A Brief Guide to Making an Offer On a Home

To follow up on yesterday’s post of negotiating a home price, we’re offering suggestions on how to make an offer on a house (and win!).

Once you’ve found a home that you love and have all of your finances in order, you’ve hopefully reached the time where you feel ready to make an offer on the property. This part of the process is more technical and less of the daydreaming involved in looking at houses. The first, and possibly most important, piece of advice we can offer is to act quickly. Nothing is much worse than falling in love with a house just to realize someone has swooped it out from underneath you at the last moment. It may be wise to order a Comparative Market Analysis with your realtor to be certain that you’re not putting in an offer far above or below the property’s value. The CMA will give you an up to date analysis on the similar homes in your local market and what they sold for.

Following all of this information, it may be wise to get a feel for the other offers being made. This will prevent you from being blindsided by a better bid once you’ve already submitted your purchase offer. Your purchase offer, or letter of intent to purchase, will become legally binding once the seller has approved it. Many sellers will often not consider a buyer if they do not have a letter of pre-approval on their finances, so always be sure that you speak to your loan officer so that you don’t find yourself missing any of the required documents.

After you’ve come up with an offer that you’re comfortable with, keep in mind that some closing costs are non-refundable. These could cost hundreds if not thousands of dollars, so consider these if they have the potential to impact your offer. This is why it may be important to find out more information on the other offers being made, so that you don’t pay for these costs and then still wind up not winning a bidding war.

All in all, we’d always advise that you speak to the team who has been with you throughout the whole process. Find a realtor whom you trust, along with a loan officer that can guide you through the financial process. Good luck!