Your real estate agent can make a significant difference in your success in getting an accepted real estate purchase contract. For the most part, buyers believe that it is the offer price that drives the contract. While the price is significant, I’ve seen full-price offers rejected because the buyer’s terms were “questionable.”
Purchase contracts are a written document detailing the terms and conditions that both parties agree to perform or close on. It is not unusual to consider these parts when preparing an offer: price, terms and conditions.
As REALTORS, we must strive to keep this in perspective and prevent emotions from entering the equation. It is useless to let the emotions of the buyer and the seller run wild. We have to keep the playing field level and try to keep this as a business decision between both parties.
Each party has to be satisfied to gain acceptance. The terms and conditions are significant factors in achieving acceptance. But, the tone you set for the initial offer to the seller goes a long way toward gaining acceptance. The role most REALTORS play in preparing and structuring the offer is to present an offer that is so attractive that the seller wants to consider it and, if necessary, make a counter offer. Meaningless offers only frustrate sellers and make them antagonistic to any response. The offer should be written clearly enough that the seller and other parties to the transaction have few questions about the outcome. In other words, it is a solid offer with proof of the buyer’s ability to buy and perform according to the contract.
Buyers have influence only if they have done their homework. First things first, get pre-approval from a “reputable” lender before submitting an offer. Please have a copy of the pre-approval to provide with your offer. Remember, sellers have a goal! Your goal is to sell to the best buyer who can close the transaction according to your expectations. The pre-approval letter goes a long way in providing proof that you have the ability to purchase.
Do your homework with the REALTOR who is representing you. Validate that the price you are offering will be the current market value. In today’s market, a difference in a few months can make a big difference in the value of your home. For many years, as sales agents, we have tried to predict where the market value might be in the coming months when an offer comes in. Today, we try to predict when and where the market could bottom. A realistically priced property six months ago could have depreciated more than 5%. That means $100,000 would have lost $5,000 in value in the last six months. Be sure to compare apples to apples too. Compare similar properties in the closest possible proximity to the property you are considering making an offer on.