Traverse City Record-Eagle

Real Estate News

June 11, 2012

How to Beat Big Investors to Good Properties

Syndicated — As real estate bidding wars become commonplace, it's important to remember these adages:

1. The early bird gets the worm.

2. Always put your best foot forward.

Especially in areas where inventories are limited, three or more offers may be submitted within the first 24 hours after a property goes on the market. By the time your Day 3 offer rolls in, the deal is done - especially on short sales or bank-owned properties.

How do the early birds get in, tour the property and make offers so quickly? Chances are, they didn't go see the property. That's right. The savvy investor knows the areas in which he wants to buy, he knows what size and type of properties he's after, and he knows what he's willing to spend. So, when he sees a listing that meets his criteria - he's able to pounce. If the offer is accepted, Mr. Early Bird can go see the property; if he doesn't like it, he can back out of the deal, generally at no cost (be sure to read your contract!)

This process may be frustrating for real estate novices, but it's just the way it is. And, honestly, if you don't know enough about your target properties and neighborhoods so that you, too, can make a quick offer - you need to do more homework.

Becoming the early bird means you need to be well-versed with the offer process. Smart buyers know the standard contract terms and many go so far as to arm their real estate agents with signed, blank offering templates. If they see a listing they like, they can have their agent fill in the price and terms and forward the offer - all within hours of when the property first hits the MLS list.

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