As an estate agent, there is nothing more fun and exciting than when you finally get to write the offer. If you’re hip like me you might use some catchy phrases like “pull the trigger” or “write up the deal”. Whatever you want to call it, it’s impossible to ignore the excitement in the air when the perfect home has been found and you are hopefully about to make someone’s dreams come true.
This is the moment where all the other homes that weren’t quite right are forgotten and all the stress of the inspection, the negotiations and the closing process hasn’t yet materialized. It’s just a moment of excitement, hope and happiness. Here’s where the art of writing an offer comes in.
As the agent, the buyers are going to look to you for advice. What should I offer, is this a good investment, will I have equity down the road, how much should I put down, what is earnest money (is it the same as the down payment)? Buyers will have a million questions and quite possibly some fears so a good agent will have anticipated all of this and have their answers ready. In my opinion, the most important part of this moment is the offer price.
Many buyers will have a number in mind but some won’t. Some will ask your opinion, some won’t. Some will just ask for a number and not even care how you arrived at that number. Many will be fearful of offending the seller, some won’t.
But if you have done your homework and have a good feel of what the home will sell for and can back that up with research, you are headed in the right direction (side note: now I can provide instant comparables with my iPad no matter where I am; no more going back to the office to do the research and having to get back to my buyers with my findings!)
One thing I have learned as an agent is never to use the word “worth” when talking about a home. That word doesn’t exist; a home does not have worth. A home will sell for whatever someone is willing to pay for it so things like how many days a home has been on the market, where it’s located and what houses in the area are selling for are good indicators of what someone would be willing to pay for a home.
A seller might say “but my home was worth $50,000 more a few years ago!” Well guess what, nobody is willing to buy your home for that price today.
Ok, I could go on and on about this but one last thing I want to add is that there is more than one way to make the offer enticing. Sure price plays a large part but there is also these: how quick you can close, how much are you putting down, how solid of a buyer are you and what kinds of contingencies are you asking for (or more specifically, which ones will you waive?)
I truly love this point in the game and have learned many things along the way that I love to share with my buyers. If you or someone you know is interested in buying, send them my way. I’ll take good care of ‘em! I might bore them to death with knowledge but at least they’ll walk away knowing they had all the information they needed to make the best decisions possible!