A Brief Guide for Making an Offer On a Home

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

After you’ve found a home that you love and have all of your finances in order, you may have reached the point where you feel ready to make an offer. Less of the daydreaming involved in looking at houses, this part of the process is more technical. The first piece of advice we can offer is to act quickly if you are set on the property. Nothing is worse than falling in love with a house just to realize someone has swooped it out from underneath you. Initially, it is wise to order a Comparative Market Analysis with your realtor if you haven’t done so already. This will show you an up to date analysis on the local market, and what similar homes sold for, just so that you’re certain you’re not putting in an offer far above the property’s value.

Following this, try to get a feel for the other offers being made so that you’re not blindsided by a higher bid. Your purchase offer, or letter of intent to purchase, will become legally binding once the seller has approved of it. Often times, sellers will 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 needed documents.

Before you’ve come up with an offer that you’re comfortable with, consider the closing costs, and that some are non-refundable. These could cost hundreds if not thousands of dollars, so keep these in mind if they have the potential to impact your offer. This is why it may be wise 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.

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!