Special offer

Will the 14th Offer Be the Charm?

Reblogger Betina Foreman
Real Estate Agent with WJK Realty 0570241


Here is some great advice for buyers looking to purchase a home in a "hot" market. This information is valid in Austin or any other "sellers market". A sellers market is one where there are more buyers than available homes, therefore competition is fierce. So be prepared!

Original content by Patricia Kennedy AB95346

I recently met a couple who had written 13 offers on various homes in Northern Virginia - with no luck at all.  And they sounded really, really motivated.  Right now, they are living with the in laws.  Not great. 

They were working with an agent who I know is good at what she does.  She works hard, knows the territory and plays well with others.  So what was going on here?  Their plight is not unusual.  Around the DC metro area, inventory is tight, especially in the under $700,000 price range.  But it's possible to find a great place, whatever your budget.  Here are some of the things I tell my own clients looking for their first homes:

  • Don't look over your price range.  Chances are strong you will be in a multiple offer situation, and you need some space to go up.  If, for example, you have been pre-approved for $700,000, try to keep your search to under about $675,000.
  • Instead of going for the homes that are ultra-staged with universal appeal, consider the Plain Janes that, with a coat of paint and a little imagination could become your dream house.
  • If you are going into a bidding war, remember that you need to be green and clean.  The price (the green) is important, but so are the terms of your offer (the clean).  The sellers will be looking for the buyers who look the most likely to complete the transaction.
  • Lots of buyers try to be the first in the door as a new listing goes on the market.  But don't ignor the wallflowers who have been sitting with no suiters.  A lot of the time, they'll have some fixable flaw that has scared off other buyers.  Other times, the prices are way too high, but you can catch the sellers at a point where they are sick of making the beds and ready to deal. 
  • If you try to find the smallest, least expensive house in a great neighborhood, you could be competing against the professionals who are looking for renovation or rebuilding projects.  They are likely to be a lot more agile than you are when it comes to financing the deal and eliminating contingencies, especially for home inspections, financing and appraisals. 
  • Make sure your agent finds out what the sellers need in terms of a settlement time frame and if there are any other conditions that could make your offer more attractive to them.
  • Keep an open mind about where to live.  Here is Washington, there are many first time buyers who just can't afford the old favorite neighborhoods, and they are turning formerly funking areas into the new cool places to live.  And if you don't have to be in town, there are some wonderful values in the Maryland and Virginia suburbs. 
  • If you started out looking for a detached, single family home, reconsider whether a townhouse or even a condo could work for you. 
  • It sort of goes with saying that you need to be pre-approved for your mortgage.  And if you are smart, it will be with a small local lender rather than one of the big guys.
  • Keep it simple.  Don't ask them to leave their Labradoodle or grand piano. 

So I really wish these kids, not to mention their agent, good luck.  August might work.  It's hot and most buyers are at the beach, so if they stay home and househunt, there might be less competition! 



Laura Cerrano
Feng Shui Manhattan Long Island - Locust Valley, NY
Certified Feng Shui Expert, Speaker & Researcher

I admire that kind of persistance! :)

Jul 20, 2013 04:56 AM
Lou Ludwig
Ludwig & Associates - Boca Raton, FL
Designations Earned CRB, CRS, CIPS, GRI, SRES, TRC


Pat's blog is a great choice for a re-post.

Good luck and success.

Lou Ludwig

Jul 20, 2013 06:06 AM
Betina Foreman
WJK Realty - Austin, TX
Realtor, C.N.E., with WJK REALTY


In a tight market like we currantly have, persistant is the only way to be.




I was going to write a blog on this topic and stumbled across Pat's post. I thought there is no point to reinvent the wheel. Pat did a great job and I felt it was VERY worthy of a re-post.


Thank you for being so inspired and writing such a timely post! I could not have said it any better myself.


Jul 20, 2013 06:30 AM
Doyle Davison
Hawaiian Beaches Hawaii - 714-968-6767 - Huntington Beach, CA
30 years as your Concierge services listing broker

great persistence and motivation.. I worry about the buyer giving up..

Jan 07, 2015 12:55 PM
Inna Ivchenko
Barcode Properties - Encino, CA
Realtor® • GRI • HAFA • PSC Calabasas CA

I remember those days when I had to write offers for the same buyer over and over again. When the market is hot, the winning offer is usually the highest with min contingencies.

Jun 10, 2015 05:00 PM
Betina Foreman

In the Austin area we are seeing offers $25k over list price being rejected. Multiple offers can often be a competition of 20 or more offers for one home. It's very discouraging, because it also drives up property taxes of the existing home owners that are not presently selling.

Jun 11, 2015 01:21 AM