Are You Planning to Buy a House Soon? Here Are 4 Tips You Can Use to Get the Home of Your Dreams in a Red Hot Housing Market
In a normal year, finding the right house can be tougher than trying to chew through old beef jerky. But when you consider the housing shortage Forbes reported on in April 2021, landing a home in the almost-but-not-yet-done-with-COVID real estate market is like trying to run an oxygen-free marathon up Mount Everest.
So how can you make the most out of these difficult homebuying circumstances? What can you do to tip the odds in your favor?
Here are some tips and tricks that you can use to land the house of your dreams in a housing market that’s going nuts.
Tip #1: Check Out the Distressed Housing Market
In a competitive real estate market, you can easily end up in a situation where houses get taken off the market faster than you can text your real estate agent to say “I would like to take a look at this one!”. One way to avoid the stress and frustration of watching good houses sell before you can make a bid is to check out the distressed housing market.
Although many people hear the words “distressed housing market” and start picturing a bunch of boarded-up fixer-uppers, there are many reasons why sellers may be forced to sell. The house could have belonged to a recently deceased relative or maybe the seller accepted a job in another state and is pricing the house to sell quickly.
If you keep an eye on distressed properties, you just might find a gem that the other buyers aren’t aware of.
Tip #2: Look at Houses that Have Been on the Market for a While
This one might seem counterintuitive when the real estate market is hot enough to make a heated stove look like an ice cube. After all, if the house is still on the market, that means that there’s probably an issue that’s scaring off buyers, right?
Sometimes sellers list their homes prematurely or are victims of incredibly bad timing. And, more importantly for your house-hunting efforts, a seller who has been trying to offload their property for a few weeks or months may be a little more willing to entertain a slightly lower offer.
Of course, this isn’t to say that you should jump on every house that’s been on sale for more than a few days. But if you want to expand your options, you may want to approach these longer-on-the-market properties with an open mind.
Tip #3: Visit the Auction House
Why do Antique dealers, business owners, and collectors of all sorts attend auctions?
Because auctions are a great opportunity to land a bunch of high-quality items at surprisingly low prices.
You see, part of the problem with trying to buy an in-demand home in the open market is that prices often start high and go up even higher. When you throw in the bidding wars that naturally happen when you have a bunch of homebuyers and not enough houses, the prices just go up from there.
If you’re house hunting and you’re looking to bring the price down just a touch, auctions are a great way to get exactly that.
Tip #4: Get Your Mortgage Preapproved
Imagine you’re watching the Summer Olympics. If you were watching a track-and-field event and you saw a sprinter stop in front of the finish line to tie their shoes and straighten their uniform you would be shocked at the lack of preparation, right?
But while nobody would dream of competing for gold with their shoelaces untied, that’s effectively what happens to homeowning hopefuls who wait to get their mortgage preapproved. When you’re in a hot housing market, every hour of “We have to wait and see what the lender says.” is another opportunity for you to be outbid.
This may take some time if you have to build up your credit score and pay down debts before making your mortgage application. But once you have that approval in hand, you can place a formal offer much faster.
Is It Possible to Get the House You Want in a Competitive Market?
AP reported in May 2021 that the Federal Reserve expected to see interest rates remain low until 2023. Because borrowing is cheaper than ever so it’s not a surprise that the real estate market has been booming ever since the pandemic.
But with buyers snatching up properties faster than sellers can put them on the market, it’s important to dot your i’s and cross your t’s if you want to find the right house.
We’ve just given you a list of strategies you can still land a fantastic house despite all the competition in the housing market. If you use these tips to your advantage, you could be moving into your dream home sooner than you think.