where you live is your castle

The Scoop on DC Living
March 2016
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DC, Maryland, Virginia


Competing in a Hot Market

Where real estate is concerned, I often hear people say, "I don't want to get into a bidding war, so I'm going to sit this one out." The truth about DC is that we are a competitive city in nearly every way. So, there is no sense in giving up the fight when it comes to finding the right home. Rather, enlisting the appropriate strategy is key. And as they say in Lottery terms, "you can't win if you don't play."

This week, I presented a highly competitive offer that was not chosen by the seller. My buyers are perfectly financed and I presented an offer that allowed for plenty of leeway where their maximum price was concerned. When I asked for some feedback from the listing agent - as often I do in order to create some education for myself and my buyers - I was told our offer lost on two items:
1) Home Inspection; and
2) Appraisal Contingency.

We had written in a General Inspection, when buyers with the winning offer had providing no home inspection contingency whatsoever. They had chosen instead to pay a home inspector for a pre-inspection, which allowed the to determine whether or not they wanted to make an offer ...and because the inspection went well enough, the buyer put forth an offer without a Home Inspection Contingency.

My buyers' offer also included an Appraisal Contingency, which nearly always is included in the offer to purchase real estate, whereas the winning offer did not. The Appraisal Contingency allows buyers who finance that comfort of knowing their lending institution will underwrite the mortgage on their up up to the home's current fair market value.  In competitive situations, buyers are coming to the table with a bucket of cash just in case the appraisal comes up short of the contract price in order to bridge any gap between the appraised value and the contract price.

This is certainly something to chew on. But in the end, each buyer is the boss of making the decisions that make best sense for moving forward on a home or walking away from a potential deal.

The above are merely tools that some are using in order to accomplish their home buying goals.

If information is power, my mission is to help create the most powerful consumers of real estate on the market!

- Brett
Featured Property!
This beautiful loft-style #UrbanCastle featuring 2 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms is available to a good new owner!  Click here for the virtual tour...

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So You Wanna Buy a House? Step 4: Find the Right Realtor (feat. Brett West)
If you've been following our weekly, step-by-step 2016 Home-Buying Guide, you know that purchasing a new home takes some serious prep work-from cleaning up your credit score to amassing a down payment.

What's In and Out in Home Design
While your furniture, finishes and accessories should be a reflection of your personal taste, there's no question that fads come and go in home decorating. After all, you rarely see avocado green appliances these days unless someone is going for a retro look.
#UrbanCastles on the Market


As of February 4, 2016, DC boasts 1,130 properties actively on the market for sale - approximately 50 more than a month ago. This excludes FSBOs (For Sale By Owner) and pocket listings. Here's a look at inventory by price range throughout the hot 20011 DC zip code, which includes 16th Street Heights, Brightwood, Crestwood, Petworth and the northern reaches of Columbia Heights, where there are currently 95 active properties:


$0 to $350k

(12 total units available)


$350k to $500k

(22 units available)


$500k to $800k

(52 units available)



(11 units available)


Not finding exactly what you're looking for in the selection of inventory in DC? Feel free to check out plenty of inventory throughout the DC Metro Area, or drop me a line to schedule a time to talk with you about your goals.




202.552.5604 direct

202.744.0576 mobile  



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