Buyers considering “hot markets,” or neighborhoods where it always seems to be a seller’s market, face unique challenges. You have to move quickly and confidently to land a home in areas with a lot of buyer competition.
If you’re looking in a hot market, be prepared for a longer process than a standard home search. You may find that you make several offers before finding the right fit.
Take the time to tour open houses and familiarize yourself with the listings in your target area. You my find out that homes in that zip code you desired have a horrible floor plan or no back yard.
Make sure your real estate agent has a firm grasp on the neighborhood. You want an agent who knows about listings as soon as they hit the market and can make your offer stand out.
Have all your financial ducks in a row. Don’t go looking in a hot market if you’re not ready to make an immediate offer. Be prepared to put more than the typical $500 down in earnest money with your contract. Many sellers list the homes at a lower value than they’re worth to drive up competition, and then they go with the highest bidder.
Understand your limits. Go in knowing what you are unwilling to sacrifice and your absolute budget hard line, and stick to those guidelines.
When you find a house that has everything you want, don’t hesitate, even if it’s a brand-new listing. Talk to your agent and make a tempting offer. Sellers in hot markets don’t need to consider low bids.
Keep in mind that you probably won’t get the first house you make an offer on, or even the second or third. Don’t get discouraged. It’s easy for first-time buyers to fall in love with a charming property, only to have their hearts broken. A good rule of thumb is to avoid imagining yourself living in a property you don’t own.
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The blog and its opinions are expressly that of its author and does not convey the opinions or strategies of the Credit Union and should not be considered financial advice. CommunityAmerica’s Mortgage offers are subject to credit approval and terms may vary based on conditions.