Real estate experts share their tips for coaching homebuying clients to be successful in the most competitive markets.
It's been a seller's market for years in some of the hottest real estate markets, but that doesn't mean your homebuying clients have to settle for less than the home of their dreams. These tips from pro real estate agents will help you get your clients to the close in a seller's market.
Make certain financing is in order first
A prequalification letter from a mortgage lender is not enough for homebuyers in a seller's market, according to Mike Zschunke, a real estate expert in the Phoenix/Scottsdale area.
"Buyers must have a prequalification up to a certain price, and if they're paying cash, they should also have certified proof of funds ready to go," Zschunke says.
San Diego-based Realtor® Sandro Natale also recommends before the home search begins, you arrange a phone call to ensure buyer and mortgage lender are all on the same page.
On BBT.com, your clients can submit their financial information for review in 15 minutes or less for prequalification.
For your clients: You're prequalified: Here’s exactly what that means
Ensure buyers understand they can't play hardball
Once your clients understand that a seller's market leaves little room to negotiate, the time you spend arranging and attending showings will be more productive. Educate your clients that low offers or significant requests to remedy are futile in a seller's market; they'll have more realistic expectations of any negotiations that take place.
And when they do find that home they love, there’s no time to hesitate.
"Clients need to be ready, willing and able to purchase the home as soon as it becomes available," says Zschunke. "A buyer who is truly interested in a property should write an offer that reflects their highest and best offer."
Clients should also understand that an attractive offer isn't just about the purchase price.
"Offering a higher earnest money percentage can also show that the buyer is willing to put more skin in the game," he adds.
When presenting the offer, Natale recommends preparing a PDF for the seller's agent, with a cover letter on top of the purchase contract.
For your clients: It's a seller’s market: Here's what that means for you
Encourage clients to get personal
Selling a home can be an emotional process. Buyers can use this to their advantage.
"I coach my buyer clients to find a commonality between them and the seller," says Natale. "If both parties have a golden retriever, the cover letter of the offer should have a picture of the family with your dog in it."
Put the seller first
Most sellers are looking for a solid offer that accommodates their plans after the home is sold. "Advise buyers to be flexible on a closing date," says Zschunke. "Pick a date that's 30 days out from the date the offer is presented and include the terminology 'on or before' in the offer." Zschunke explains that the buyer's willingness to work around the seller is another indication that they are ready and able to purchase the property.
With these tips in mind, you're a step closer to turning your homebuyers into homeowners in even the most competitive markets.
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