So Many Buyers, Too Few Homes: How to Win the Home Buying Bid During the Pandemic

While much of the economy crashed during the beginning of the pandemic that has so far claimed 170,000 American lives, real estate is booming. The average U.S. home price rose 4.2% in May, compared to the same time last year.

Buyers are concerned about the unstable rental market, and are seeking security in the form of a home they know will always be theirs. This means an intense buying market, and many people are finding homes sold out from under them again and again. If you’re finding getting in a home difficult during these trying times, you’re not alone. Here are a few tips to help you win the bid.

Sold sign

Real Estate “sold” sign with red brick building and trees blurry in the background

Be prepared before shopping

Homes are selling fast. By the time you see your dream home and fall in love with it, chances are half a dozen other people have done the same thing. You can give yourself an edge in this race by having all of your documents together before you begin home shopping.

That means having a pre-approval letter in hand if you plan to have a mortgage so that if you find a home you can move the second you find “the one.”

Have cash? Now’s the time to use it

Even faster than a pre-approval letter is to offer cash upfront for the home. Many buyers prefer cash over credit, and may even be willing to accept a lower price in exchange for a cash payment upfront. If you can’t swing this, don’t sweat it; but if it is an option, don’t be afraid to use it as a way to help get to a close faster.

Improve safety with zoom meetings

Getting to the purchasing point isn’t the only hitch on the road to buying a home. With concerns about the virus spreading, the idea of getting together in person can be frightening. You can reduce your risk by taking meetings online and to meet outdoors whenever possible.

pre-approved image

Printed document with rubber stamp and the word pre-approved. Concept of mortgage or loan pre-approval. 3D illustration.

Don’t skimp on the important stuff

In the rush to offer a deal faster than anybody else, it’s tempting to forgo an inspection or drop your right to choose a title company in order to hasten along the process. This is one area where you don’t want to forgo your rights, even if it will close the deal faster.

Inspections are critical to protecting your interests. Without an inspection, you may find yourself with a beautiful home that you can’t live in, due to an invisible problem behind the walls of the home or in the roof.

Likewise, the title company also protects your interest. Title companies check to make sure the person selling the home is actually the owner of the home, and there are no problems that could cause you to lose your house, unable to recoup the costs, later.

Even if you miss out on an opportunity for a home, this is an area you certainly don’t want to put at risk for the sake of a fast deal.

Pandemic buying is difficult. Not only is it harder to look at homes safely, but it’s also harder to get in a home in the first place. If you find your perfect dream home slipping between your fingers, again and again, try these tips to make the process a little smoother.

At Millennial Title, we work with home buyers and sellers to help them close on their home in a timely and efficient manner. Reach out to us today for expert experience and guidance you can trust.