It’s no secret Austin is a hot market. Demand is high and inventory is low. And things aren’t expected to change anytime soon. With major corporations like Tesla, Samsung and Apple moving to the area—builders can’t seem to catch up. Even existing inventory is flying off the market at break-neck speed. In fact, it’s not uncommon for sellers to receive upwards of 20 offers on a single listing. So, as a homebuyer relocating to the area, how do you compete with cash-offers, bidding wars and sky-rocketing prices? Here are a few tips to keep you in the game.
1. Trust your real estate agent. Find an experienced professional who is an expert in the local market and can remain cool under pressure. You’ll need that voice of calm as you navigate the stressful purchasing process. Follow their advice, and you'll be in good shape, even in a seller's market.
2. Don’t dawdle. Do your homework. Know your must-haves versus your like-to-haves. When you find a home that checks all of your non-negotiable boxes, make an offer and consider going above asking price, if possible. And remember, in a sellers’ market, now is NOT the time for contingency clauses or concessions.
3. Secure financing early. Make sure you are pre-qualified for a mortgage and submit your pre-approval letter from your lender upon making an offer. If your preapproval letter is from an out-of-state lender, you may want to secure a local preapproval as well. Match your preapproval letter to your sales price and date it the same day as your offer.
4. Don’t be desperate. If you can wait out the market, do so. Unfortunately, many buyers don’t have that luxury and need to find a home now. In that case, be patient and don’t be tempted to make an offer on a home you wouldn’t otherwise consider. Home ownership is a long-term commitment. Plus, new homes are popping up on the market daily. Chances are, your timing will be better with the next offer. And you’ll end up with the home you love, without having settled.