Corey Crocker

Question: My family and I are looking to buy a new home, but as we all know, it’s a very competitive market. I want to set myself up for success. How can I best prepare to buy in such a competitive market and make my offer stand out?

Answer: That’s a great question and one I’m getting often, especially right now. Inventory is low and demand is high. Right now, people are not only getting multiple offers, they’re getting offers above asking price, as well as cash offers. That is hard to compete with. To buy in such a competitive market, not only do you need to know what you want and act quickly, but your offer needs to stand out right from the start. Here are a few tips to help you do just that.

1. Get your finances and loan organized

Before doing anything else, meet with lenders, find out what you can afford, and get a pre-qualification letter. Gather your ­financial statements and prepare any family gifts or investment liquidations early so you are prepared to get competitive if you need to.

2. Find a broker who you trust and can rely on

In a seller’s market, having a reliable broker is vital. Experienced brokers have the connections and know how to find great places as soon as they go up for sale (and sometimes even right before). Don’t be afraid to interview more than one — finding a partner who you can trust and rely on is very important, especially when housing inventory is low. During your research, reach out and talk to previous clients. This gives you a first-hand experience on how well a broker performs.

3. Find your perfect — or close to perfect — place

Throughout the entire Roaring Fork Valley, there are less than 350 residential listings on the market right now, so finding your absolute dream home might be challenging. Before you start looking, determine what’s important to you. In a competitive market, there may not be time to debate that preferred location/neighborhood or how many bedrooms you need once you’ve found a home that has caught your interest. Knowing your must-haves, nice-to-haves, and what you’re willing to be flexible on will allow you to move quickly when the best place comes available.

4. Stand out

Right now, sellers are in the driver’s seat. But there are little things you can do to sweeten the deal.

Properties are selling over their asking prices, so agree on your comfort range ahead of time.

Understand the terms of the contract. There may be contingencies you can waive to strengthen your offer.

Consider bringing extra cash to fill appraisal gaps. If you need to sell in order to finance your new home, have that done or in process.

Include a strong down payment in your offer. This shows the seller that you are financially able and ready to purchase their home. It also suggests that the loan process should go smoothly, which gives the sellers even more confidence in your offer.

Corey Crocker’s local connections and broad client base allow her to present unconventional opportunities by personalizing her service based on individual clients’ needs. Whether you are putting down roots for the first time or growing your real estate portfolio, she is committed to thorough consideration and impeccable service. CCrocker@sliferrfv.com