Searching for the right house can be like looking for a needle in a haystack. If you stumble upon one that seems like it checks all the boxes, you may be tempted to immediately make an offer. That may be a smart move in some cases, but not in others.
When to Make a Quick Offer
If a house was just listed recently, it’s safe to assume that you’re not the only person interested in buying it. Under those circumstances, it may be wise to make an offer as soon as possible, especially if it’s a seller’s market or if the house has amenities that aren’t widely available. If the current owner needs to move soon, that should motivate you to make a quick offer.
When to Hold Off on Submitting a Bid
If a house has been on the market for several months, there is a reason for that. It may be that the home was initially overpriced, or it may have serious issues that will require expensive repairs. Your real estate agent may be able to tell you why the house has been slow to sell. If it needs a lot of work, you may decide to submit a low offer, or you may choose to pass on that house and look at other properties.
Why You Shouldn’t Jump at the First House You Like
Houses come in a wide range of sizes and styles. When making such an important decision, it’s important to weigh your options and to look at a variety of houses so you have a good sense of what’s out there. You may think you have found the perfect home, but your feelings may change if you look at a few more properties.
How the Sale of Your Home Can Factor Into the Equation
If you have to sell the house where you’re currently living, but you haven’t received any offers, that may complicate things when it comes to buying a new home. If you purchase a new home before selling your old one, you may wind up having to cover two mortgages, plus insurance and property taxes on two homes, for several months. Think carefully about whether you could do that. If not, it may be better to wait to make an offer or to consider a different house after you have found a buyer for your current home.
Your Agent Can Help You Craft an Offer Letter
Once you have found the house you want and decided that it’s time to make a bid, you will have to choose an amount. You may offer the asking price, or more or less, depending on the condition of the house, how long it has been on the market and other factors. Your agent can help you make an offer that is reasonable but will also leave you room in your budget to negotiate.