The market is HOT HOT HOT.
There aren’t enough homes.
There just isn’t any great listings.
These are just a few of the things that we are saying and hearing over and over again in the Greater Seattle Area market. I’ve written before 10 tips to make an offer that wins you the home in a multiple offer before. Today, I want to talk about what your Broker should and should not be doing.
Tell you the truth!
As a Listing Broker, I have Buyer Brokers calling me and they say to me, “My buyer doesn’t want to be in a bidding war” to which I have to bite my tongue hard just to keep myself from blurting out, “Duh” Seriously, I’ve never had a Buyer client say to me, “I’d like to compete for a home.”
It’s tough out there and I get it. The Buyer has no control over the number of offers that might be submitted on a home in any market, let alone this market. Additionally, the best homes are going to get the best response. You might as well say to yourself, “I’m only looking at homes that are both run down and overpriced to ensure I don’t have to compete” and I’m fairly sure that’s not what the Buyer wants.
If your Broker hasn’t told you and demonstrated to you how tough the competition is; get a new Broker fast.
Help you understand the pros and cons of each contingency
As a Listing Broker, I sometimes am baffled by the offers I get and the contingencies they sometimes include.
One of the most ridiculous contingencies is called a “Neighborhood Review” where the Buyer basically asks the Seller to take the home off the market for 3 days so that they can walk around the neighborhood to decide if they want to live there. Obviously in a competitive market, the Seller is going to choose the offer that is not contingent on the Buyer walking around the block to check things out.
Let’s talk about this. When a Seller accepts your offer based on contingencies, what they are really doing is agreeing to period of time where there is absolutely no risk to the Buyer to check either the home or their own finances out. Why would you make such an offer based on retaining a small earnest money deposit?
Think about this from the Seller’s perspective, they are going to accept your offer and almost immediately they will start to incur expenses in securing their next home. They might be putting deposits down on a future home, with movers, signing binding contracts to secure their next home or a host of other expenses. Don’t expect a Seller to be excited about your offer when you as a Buyer are asking the Seller to assume all the risk.
Either accept some risk in the transaction by waiving contingencies and/or make the earnest money high enough to be of interest to the Seller.
They should present a well put together offer
Many times as a Listing Broker I receive offers in pieces. Meaning I’ll get 2 to 3 emails all for one offer. The pre-approval letter is one email, the seller disclosures are in another and the offer is in a 3rd. Imagine if there are 10 offers and every broker sent such disorganized offers in.
Your real estate broker should be a rock-star when it comes to using email or any other means of communication. A hap-hazard offer can increase the chances that something gets missed and your offer gets glazed offer.
They should be professional and extremely polite when they communicate with the Listing Broker or Seller.
The last thing anybody wants is to work with a nightmare broker on the other side of the transaction. Because I can’t control the other broker in a transaction, I have learned to be very transparent with my client. I’ll call the other broker in front of my client so they can hear for themselves how the other broker represents themselves and their clients.
Make sure your broker represents you well at all times by being professional in all types of communication.
Most brokers are wonderful. It’s the few that don’t take the job seriously that give a bad reputation to the lot. I’m here to help, and I don’t want you to lose your dream home because of what your broker did or didn’t do.