Winning Boston Area Real Estate Bidding Wars

With Boston area real estate bidding wars starting to heat up with the coming of the spring buying season, it’s more important than ever to get your ducks in a row before you start submitting offers on any Boston area real estate. Diana Olick covers six ways to win a home bidding war in this red hot housing market…

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Boston Real Estate Prices Continue to Rise

Because interest rates are still hovering near all time record lows, it’s a good time to get into the market before those rates start to rise as everyone is forecasting them to do. But as Boston area real estate prices keep rising, and then when rates start to rise, home buyers will have to settle for a lot less house for the same monthly payment later versus what they can get now, IF they have good enough credit to qualify.
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The Boston area real estate buying process doesn’t have to be ugly or adversarial. You and the seller are both trying to come to an agreement that will make the transaction a success for both of you. If the Boston area home you’re making an offer on is the one you feel is 100 percent right for you, make it clear you want to get the deal done. Follow the pointers Diana listed in the video in order for the deal to happen. The savings from a successful real estate negotiation are well worth the time and effort you’ll commit.
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Don’t forget, we post tips daily on Twitter and Facebook, sometimes pertaining directly to Boston area real estate and home buying tips, including other ways to negotiate prices. Find us there as well.
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Winning a Boston Area Home Bidding War

Boston area home bidding wars have become increasingly common since the housing market turned around. Here are a few tips for buyers and sellers on handling multiple offer situations.

Tips for winning a Boston area home bidding warTips for Winning a Boston Area Home Bidding Battle

Keep it Clean

The cleaner the offer, the better. That means fewer contingencies or no contingencies. Cash buyers almost always have an advantage.

Don’t Overpay

Sometimes losing is winning, if that means not overpaying. Do your homework, and know what a property is worth. Never fall in love with a property to the point where you lose a grip on your common sense.

Be Quick

It pays to snag properties before others make offers. Get out there, beat the bushes and find something others aren’t seeing. Make sure your real estate agent knows all of your wants and must-have’s so they can keep a keener eye out for your perfect Boston area home.

For Sellers

Pricing a property correctly can generate a lot of interest and potentially spark a bidding war. Overprice your property, even a little, and that will almost guarantee that this article won’t apply to you, because you won’t have multiple offers coming in if you’re overpriced.

Make It Human

Sometimes what wins sellers over is a personal letter saying who you are. Try to connect with the seller and not just be a number on a piece of paper. Some sellers take the offer with a letter which was less money than the one without a letter.

Be Ethical

Go back to everyone and give a deadline for all bidders to turn in their highest and best offer. But be honest and ethical. Buyers will recognize a shyster and run for the next Boston area home for sale.

We encourage our Boston area home buyers not to engage in bidding wars. Let Buyer’s Choice Realty help you do your homework so as not to find yourself in multiple offer situations. Call us today for a no-obligation consultation on the current state of the Boston area home market. 1-800-252-8937.

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Boston Real Estate News – May 2012

Real Estate News - March 2012

In this Issue:*

Home Buyers Find Bidding Wars Again

Mortgage Rates Remain Near Record Lows

Spring Cleaning For Your Finances

(Your comments are welcome at the bottom of our newsletter)

Home Buyers Find Bidding Wars Again

Bidding Wars Return to Real Estate

Home buyers nationwide are being caught by surprise as the spring selling season swings into high gear. Bidding wars are back!

Many buyers are finding themselves competing for the same house. Unlike the bidding wars of the past, these recent bidding wars are the result of a shortage of inventory.

Sellers, meanwhile, are not seeing huge price increases or hefty profits, like some did during the boom years when prices were going through the roof. Competitive bidding in this current enviornment is being caused by tight inventories. More evidence that housing demand is starting to pick up again after a six-year slump.

According to a Wall Street Journal quarterly survey, the inventory of homes listed for sale declined sharply in all 28 markets they track. At the height of the housing crisis in 2008, there was an 11.1 months’ supply of home for sale. In March, there was a 6.3 months’ supply. Real estate agents normally consider a market to be balanced when there is a six month supply of homes for sale.

An index recently reported by the National Association of Realtors measuring the number of contracts signed to purchase previously owned homes rose in March to its highest level in nearly two years, up 12.8% from a year ago, and 4.1% from February.

Market inventory varies in different parts of the country, but the general consensus nationwide is, the number of houses for sale is edging down.

Inventories seem to be declinging for several reasons. Some sellers have taken their homes off the market to wait for prices to increase and market conditions to improve. Investors, meanwhile, have been outmaneuvering consumers for the best properties, often making cash offers that are quickly accepted by anxious sellers.

Improvements are obviously investments in your home, and most homeowners have a list of things they’d like to do to their home to make it their dream home. Things like: gutting the kitchen, reconfiguring the bathroom or repainting the entire outside of the home.

Some economists say inventory levels are artificially low because Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, and the nation’s largest banks have been slow to list hundreds of thousands of foreclosed homes they own. Lenders slowed down the foreclosures after record-keeping abuses came to light 18 months ago.

If those same banks and lenders step up their efforts to unload their properties, inventories could quickly rise, putting pressure on prices again.

Even with bidding wars popping up again, pushing prices higher in some areas, many homes are still selling for prices much lower than they were a few years ago. Meanwhile, rents are rising at a time when mortgage levels have fallen to or near record lows. Many renters are finding rates so low they can now afford a house that was out of their price range just a year or two ago.

Housing markets face another danger. More than 11 million homeowners owe more than their home is worth, causing the trade-up market to completely stall. When homeowners can’t sell their home, let along come up with the down payment for their next home, move up buying tends to dry up.

Mortgage lending standards remain very tough. Many “deals” fall apart because homes won’t appraise for the price buyers have agreed to pay, and sellers are not willing to come down even more than they already have.

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Mortgage Rates Remain Near Record Lows

Mortgage Rates Remain Near Record Lows

Mortgage rates have dipped to near record lows again, keeping home buying and refinancing very affordable.

Last week, mortgage buyer Freddit Mac reported the rate on the 30-year fixed rate loan had dropped to 3.88%, down from 3.9% a week ago. The rate hit 3.87% back in February, the lowest long term mortgage rate in history.

The average on the 15-year fixed rate mortgage dipped to 3.12%, down from 3.13% the previous week. The national average hit an all-time low of 3.11% just two weeks ago. Average rates do not include extra fees, aka points, which most borrowers have to pay in order to get the lowest rates. One point equals 1 percent of the loan amount.

So far, record low mortgage rates have done very little to boost home sales. Analysts suspect that a record warm winter may have something to do with that, as many sales that would have normally taken place during the spring buying season, actually took place in January and February.

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Spring Cleaning For Your Finances

With Spring in full force most everywhere now, and tax season once again behind us, now is a good time to do some “spring cleaning for your finances” to help you eliminate some of the paper clutter, and get better organized.

Here are some tips on Spring Cleaning for Your Finances and your office record keeping…

We welcome your comments and suggestions below.