Ways to Write a Winning Offer

15 ways to write a winning offerIf you're buying in 2022, your offer to purchase will likely be up against offers from other motivated buyers. Below are ways you can make your offer stand out from the competition and be the one that gets accepted. Of course the strategies you use will depend a lot on the type and condition of the property, your level of motivation, and how much competition you have from other parties. 

Submit your mortgage pre-approval from a reputable, local Hawaii ender. A pre-approval from an out-of-town or big box lender can create doubt in the mind of a seller. For example, we've seen sellers disregard offers from buyers who are pre-approved by an internet lender. Give your seller every reason to believe your pre-approval is solid by working with a local bank or credit union. 

Even better, work with a local lender who can deliver your loan commitment in a week or less. Yes, some lenders can get the job done this quickly. For more info, please ask tyour lender or speak to me about lenders I use.

: Ask your mortgage lender to email your agent regarsding your ability to get a loan. This simple touch gives the seller an extra boost of confidence that you'll close without any problems. 

 Write the seller's preferred closing date into your offer. In a competitive situation you want to do all that you can to reasonably address the seller's preferred terms. Giving the seller their preferred closing date is a great way to tip the scales in your favor. 

Write an above average amount of earnest money into your offer. The typical earnest money check is about 1% of the offer price. Make your offer stand out by submitting a higher than average earnest money amount.

 If your finances allow, specify a down payment amount of at least 20%-25% in your financing contingency. This will help you gain an advantage over other buyers who are putting less money down. 

Consider whether you really need to include an appraisal contingency in your offer to purchase. Right now many winning offers don't include this contingency. Talk to your buyer agent about the pluses and minuses of including an appraisal contingency in your offer to purchase. 

Consider a modified appraisal contingency which gives the seller peace of mind that you will not cancel your offer if the appraised value comes in under the contract price. Contact us for more specifics on this contingency.   

Make your offer stronger by making it a cash offer - even if you end up purchasing with a mortgage. If you have accounts which demonstrate sufficient cash to close, you can use these accounts as proof of funds and submit a cash offer. Once your offer is accepted you can choose to finance with a mortgage instead. Contact us to learn more about the steps involved with this type of offer. 

Don't make your offer contingent on the sale of your current home. Instead, work with your lender to get pre-approved for financing which doesn't require you to sell in order to buy. Of course you can still work with your agent to sell your current home and buy your new one on the same day. 

Give your seller the peace of mind by not requesting repairs of defects of the home in your home inspection contingency. Don't allow the seller to think you might back out of the offer by specifying the inspecition is for information purposes only. 

 Don't ask the seller to pay for any other extra fees. Closing costs and other extra fees affect the seller's bottom line and could cause you to miss out on your dream home. 

Don't make your offer contingent upon the review of deed restrictions and covenants. Instead, do your homework up front and review these documents when you do your home inspection.. If you're satisfied with your review, then you can move forward.  If not, you cancel during home inspection.

 Consider other offer strategies such as an "escalation clause"  Contact us to discuss how these two strategies can be used to your benefit in a multiple offer situation. 

As much as possible, shorten each contingency deadline (financing, inspection, etc.) to the fewest number of days possible. Talk to us about an appropriate number of days for each contingency. 

Hand deliver your offer. This can be especially helpful when writing an offer on a For Sale By Owner property. This gives your agent a face-to-face opportunity to clarify your interests in the property and establish rapport with the seller. 

Consider a modified inspection contingency that limits credits or requests for repairs that are a result of the home inspection. Talk to one of our agents for more information on this contingency.  

If you include a modified appraisal contingency or waive the appraisal contingency, provide "proof of funds" which shows you have the ability to bring more cash to closing if the appraised value is lower than the contract price.  

Write your offer before showings are allowed, in other words "sight unseen". Talk to your buyer agent about the nuances of this type of offer and how to structure it. 

Make the seller's move easier by allowing the seller to rent back the property from you for a few days or a week after closing. 

Offer to pay some or all of the seller's closing costs. This can be a nice way to appeal to the seller's financial interests without causing the appraised value of the home to come in under the contract price. 

Offer to pay some or all of the seller's property tax at closing. This strategy is recommended for very competitive offers only. 

More Thoughts on Writing a Winning Offer

Your chances for success go up for every winning strategy you include in your offer. And very often it's not just the price that determines the winner. Usually it's about the offer as a whole, the overall tone of the negotiation, and who the seller trusts is the best fit for their home. 

Please note these strategies are intended for a hot seller's market and negotiations with multiple competing offers. Market conditions and strategies will change over time. Every offer is unique. In no way should this article be treated as legal advice or as a substitute for the advice you should be seeking from your attorney.