The property market remains highly competitive, with fewer homes available, especially the type of properties often preferred by first-time buyers. Here are our tips on how to approach buying a home in this hot market, giving you a better chance of success.
Securing a mortgage in principle before you start speaking with realtors or looking at homes is vital if you want to compete. A mortgage in principle will help you understand how much you can borrow based on your finances, but it will also give you a leg up on the competition. Real estate agents and sellers will see that you are a serious buyer and ready to proceed with a sale quickly.
With a mortgage adviser such as Trussle, when applying for a mortgage in principle, they run a soft credit check meaning that you don’t need to worry about it affecting your credit score. Your mortgage preapproval will usually last between 30 and 90 days, giving you a good window for viewing properties. Even after this period expires, once you have set up your online account, you can easily go back in and update your mortgage in principle.
Work with a Realtor
You have most likely already been scanning real estate sites online for some time, even taking digital tours of prospective homes. However, in this housing market, engaging an experienced realtor is vital if you want to have a chance of actually purchasing a property. Don’t just choose the first realtor you find. Shop around a bit and find someone with experience and extensive knowledge of the area where you want to buy your home. Find a realtor who has the time to sit down with you and understand your finances and needs and who has your best interest in mind. Build a good relationship and communicate regularly, being available whenever they need.
Make Strong Offers
Unfortunately, you can easily find yourself in bidding wars in this hot market. Remember that your mortgage in principle is your starting point. It is how much you can afford to borrow, so don’t be tempted even to view properties that are way out of your price range. On the other hand, don’t be tempted to come in with a very lowball offer, as you won’t be taken seriously by a seller. Make it clear that you have mortgage preapproval and are ready to move fast, and this will strengthen any offer. Work together with both your real estate agent and mortgage adviser and carefully consider your offer strategy. Your realtor will usually investigate what other offers have been turned down or how fast the seller wants to close, giving you the best chance to build a good strategy.
Try to reduce contingencies where possible. If you have fewer contingencies that could slow down a sale, that is much more appealing to a seller. But keep in mind some contingencies like home inspections are vital.
Losing out on a property you have fallen in love with can be heartbreaking and tiring, but unfortunately, this comes with the territory when looking for a home in such a hot market. Don’t panic, keep and cool head and be patient.
Keep these tips in mind and hopefully, your next home isn’t too far away!