With so many buyers willing to reduce contingencies or offer all-cash, home buying in the Bay Area has proven to be a daunting experience for many. The highly competitive environment coupled with a dearth of inventory has culminated in a record-shattering surge in home values.
Following are tips to provide a buyer advantage when competing in a multiple-offer situation:
Get "pre-underwritten" by a local lender. While this may seem like overkill compared to pre-approval, you're going to have to do this anyway to finalize your loan. Going the extra mile NOW will provide a seller with the increased certainty that your loan will indeed fund.
Expand your areas of interest to include adjacent, less trendy areas;
Lower your home price search parameters to allow for wiggle-room;
You might consider PMI (private mortgage insurance) to allow you to put less than 20% down and more towards covering an appraisal gap. Even with PMI factored in, you may still have a reasonable monthly mortgage payment with today's low interest rates. A savvy mortgage lender will advise if this is feasible with your loan and will match you with the best product for your unique situation. Recall: Buyer's earnest money deposit is a promise to the seller; the down payment, a promise to the lender.
Download our Buyer's Guide to review our "8 Most Frequently Asked Questions" and for more insight into the home buying process.
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