What is the best way to present an offer on a home?

The best way to present an offer on a home is to make sure it has enough details and is flexible to the needs of the seller.

Buying a home in Pennsylvania can be a very exciting experience. However, many buyers may miss out on great opportunities because many homes in the area are only on the market for 65 days according to Realtor.com. Buyers need to put their best foot forward in such a competitive market.

Include valuable information

While a purchase offer may be countered several times, it is still a good idea to make the original offer as complete as possible. This means buyers should include important information, such as the following:

  • Special terms of the offer, which can include contingencies or special provisions.
  • Unique characteristics of the buyers, such as making an all-cash offer, being a first-time buyer and being preapproved by a bank.
  • A time limit for the offer to encourage the seller to quickly decide whether or not it will be accepted, rejected or countered.
  • The target closing date to give the seller an understanding of the buyer's sincere interest in the home.
  • A description of how utilities and taxes will be prorated between the buyer and seller.
  • Important legal details, such as the address of the property, the type of deed that will be given and how much earnest money will be deposited.

Creating a legally binding document from the start will make it easier to transition to a sales contract should the offer be accepted. This efficiency could appeal to sellers who are eager to get rid of their house.

Realtors may encourage their clients to include more paperwork than the purchase offer. For example, some buyers may write a cover letter or include their mortgage preapproval letter. These extra documents can highlight personal details about buyers and show they can afford to buy the house.

Be flexible

Buyers can also make themselves standout to sellers by catering to the seller's needs. For example, some people want a longer escrow, so they can find a new home. Others may want to sell a house quickly because they already purchased a new place. Buyers and their realtors should learn as much as they can about the ones selling the house to figure out what type of timeframe would be most sought after. Being flexible on the closing date could make a lower offer more competitive.

Some buyers may think a competitive offer for a Philadelphia home simply has to include a number at or above the asking price, but including important information in the offer and being flexible can make a buyer with a lower budget a top contender. It is often beneficial to work with an attorney familiar with real estate law whenever a home is bought or sold.