1. Remove the uncertainty that you may not be approved for a mortgage by having a pre-approval letter from your mortgage company.
2. Show your sincerity by increasing the normal amount of earnest money customary for the area and price of the home. The earnest money will be applied toward your down payment and closing costs.
3. Specify a closing date in the contract but acknowledge that you can be flexible to accommodate the sellers moving date. If it becomes an issue, it still must be mutually agreed upon.
4. Make the contingency periods shorter if possible to make the seller feel that they’ll know sooner that the offer is solid.
5. If the contingency really isn’t important to you, leave it out of the offer. The more contingencies included in a contract, the more the seller will feel might happen to keep it from actually closing. However, do not waive contingencies if it means risking your deposit. Even in a hot market, be careful.
6. Write a personal note to the seller explaining why you like and want their home. Consider including a picture of your family and pets.
7. Physically sign the offer with a felt tip pen of contrasting color. You’d be surprised how this adds a personal touch to the offer.Offer a fair price for the property in your initial purchase agreement. It shows sincerity and good faith that you’re actually trying to purchase the home and not trying to take advantage of the seller. The old adage that you can always go up later may never happen if there are multiple offers on the property in the beginning.
And, remember as a buyer you are entitled to have your own agent represent you and negotiate on your behalf. Sometimes buyers either don't understand what a buyer a can do for them or else they think going directly to the sellers' agent will benefit them. This could not be further from the truth - the sellers' agent is legally bound to act in the best interest of the seller.
Marilyn Messenger is an Accredited Buyer Representative (ABR) and a Certified Residential Specialist (CRS) who has been representing buyers and sellers in Wayland, Sudbury, Maynard, Stow, Concord and the suburbs west of Boston since 1993.
Call Marilyn at 508-596-3501 or visit www.marilynmessenger.com for more information about buyer agency.
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