For homebuyers, the market is very competitive. Low inventory and high demand mean that most available homes on the market are experiencing multiple-offer situations. So if you’re in the market to buy a home, you’ll need to make your offer stand out in the crowd. Here are six tips to help give your offer a more competitive edge:

1. Submit a larger earnest money deposit. If you submit a larger earnest money deposit as a sign of good faith, you’ll show the seller how serious you are about buying the property. 

2. Get pre-approved. If you’re only pre-qualified, that means that your lender hasn’t really looked at your financial history in depth. However, a pre-approval is a signal that you’ve submitted all the required paperwork for a loan and that you could potentially close on the home within a couple of weeks, as long as an appraisal is done. 

3. Be flexible with the closing date. When in a multiple-offer situation, have your agent reach out to the seller’s agent to ask what the seller may want. Do they need extra time or are they looking to move quickly? Basing the closing date on the seller’s comfort puts the seller in the driver’s seat, which will, in turn, make them more comfortable proceeding into the deal with you.

4. Shorten contingencies. Typically, that refers to the inspection and financing periods. The standard inspection period in our area is 15 days, and if you’re competing with other buyers, it’s sometimes in your best interest to shorten that time frame. However, don’t shorten it too much; you still want to be able to get the inspection done. The same is true of your financing contingency; shorten the period, but confer with your lender before doing so, as they’ve been very busy this season.

5. Make it personal. Write a ‘love letter’ to the seller that details why you fell in love with their home and what your family plans to do with it once you move in. You can even include a picture of your family to maybe tug on the seller’s heartstrings. 

6. Make your best offer first. Don’t submit an offer for less than their asking price just to leave room for negotiations. Instead, put your best foot forward from the very beginning. With as many buyers that are in the market, you can’t afford to hope that the seller’s agent will come back and ask for another offer; they’ll likely just pass you over for an offer with a better price.

If you have any questions about purchasing a home here in the Florida Keys, don’t hesitate to reach out to us. We’d love to help you.