What does it actually mean when the house of your dreams is offered directly by the owners? Is it a good sign, or should you beware? We are going to figure this out together.
Selling a house is a complicated and comprehensive process which requires significant effort. Because of this, most sellers decide to delegate this task to third parties. In fact, only 6.2% of all sales are made by owners independently. If you were lucky enough to find your desired property offered for sale by the owner, you need to be aware of little differences which we will discuss further on.
Houses offered for sale directly by the owner are priced 2% higher than agent-listed properties on average. This could be explained by either owner’s optimism or lack of expertise. Therefore, you should check comparable sales in order to determine whether the price is accurate and reasonable.
Apply for third-party assistance in order to secure the deal
While attorney representation is imperative in some states, you have to apply to the attorney of a title company to ensure earnest money is placed in escrow (which typically is under the competence of a real estate agent).
Study disclosure regulations of your state
It is very important to know what type of information regarding the property condition the seller has to provide by law. Expecting that the seller will not hide any deal-stopping issues is very naive. Conduct self-driven research and find out what are you supposed to know, from structural problems and past flooding issues to the use of lead paint.
Get ready for emotional distress during the negotiations
As owners take direct action in negotiations, they might behave emotionally because of their feelings for the house where they have spent their whole life, for instance. Of course, it can affect the deal in several ways, so we highly recommend you to apply for qualified assistance of real estate agents from our team.
Consider hiring a buyer’s agent
Despite the seller’s decision to forgo the advantages of third-party services, you can hire a buyer’s agent who will represent your interests. Depending on the agreement concluded with the agency, you can even share commission costs with the seller as part of closing costs. In addition, the real estate agent can be significantly useful for making the purchase agreement, which covers all details of the offer.
Shop for a mortgage and get pre-approved
Regardless of the party selling the property, getting pre-approved means a serious desire and readiness to close the deal, so sellers might make some concessions in their turn.
Get your loan approved and hire a housing inspector
Order an appraisal from a lender and do some paperwork. As a result, your loan application will be processed pending for approval. As for the housing inspector, it is just a part of preventive security measures, so do not neglect due diligence, because the inspector can find some problem areas that can put the transaction into question.
Make an offer and negotiate
Of course, there are many cases when sellers initially agree with the offered price, which considerably facilitates the process, but in the competitive market sellers usually choose among several buyers on a variety of criteria: someone wants a greater bid, while another does not care about money that much and simply wants to find the buyer who will treat his house with the same respect. Real estate agents in these cases recommend buyers to write a personal note to the seller explaining the pros of selling the house to them.
Summing it all up, buying a house put out for sale by the owner does not really differ from buying one listed by agents. All you have to do is pay more attention to each step of the deal and be more cautious. For everything else, contact our team for assistance. Choosing us to work with, you choose professionals with 20 years of relevant experience and a team that appreciates the trust of each client and believes that the only way to win it and maintain such relationship is to work for the maximum favor of our clients.