It’s no secret that Austin is a highly competitive real estate market. The Austin Board of Realtors’ most recent report shows that, on average, Austin-area homes spend less than 33 days on the market. All of this to say, if you’re searching for a home in Austin, you need to be prepared to make a competitive, aggressive offer to score your dream home. Here are a few tips and steps you can take to ensure your offer will outbid the rest. 

Get pre-approval

If you’re not able to make a cash offer and need financing, always go to your lender for pre-approval. Pre-approval is an official approval from a lender for the amount you can borrow for a mortgage. We recommend you obtain this 30-60 days prior to beginning your home search. Although pre-approval won’t always guarantee your offer will be accepted, it does make you more appealing to sellers as it eases their concerns that you will have issues with financing during the transaction. 

Limit Contingencies 

Although contingencies are standing in most real estate transactions, a seller with multiple above asking price offers may favor a bid with fewer strings attached. If you’re able to, avoid placing contingencies on your offer by being flexible on the closing date and not making the deal dependent on the sale of a current property. 

Make a competitive offer

This sounds like a no-brainer but it is really dependent on the expertise of your realtor and their resources. Before making an offer, consult your realtor to perform a competitive market analysis which will inform you on what comparable homes are selling for in the neighborhood and surrounding area. Once you’ve submitted your offer, have a counteroffer prepared as negotiating can happen quickly, especially with multiple offers on the table. 

Increase your earnest money

Earnest money is intended to insulate a seller from non-serious buyers. Typically, earnest money is 1-3% of the purchase price or can be a set rate of $500-$1,000. By agreeing to pay this, you’re letting the seller know that you’re a serious buyer. As a buyer, it is a win-win situation since you’ll get the money back if they decline your offer and if you win the bid, it’s applied to your purchase price of the home. 

Submitting a competitive offer can be extremely challenging, especially in such an oversaturated market. Build a relationship with your realtor and give yourself time to find the perfect home. Make sure your finances are in order and be prepared to negotiate. If you’re ready to begin your Austin home search, contact our team of experts today at Roxan Coffman Properties.