Buying a Home in 2019

Welcome to the crazy 2018 Real Estate Market! As some of you may have already realized, living in the MetroWest and Worcester County can be a real challenge if you're looking to buy a house.  So, why are there so little homes on the market and so many buyers? In our professional opinion, it comes down to the simplest of explanations, Supply and Demand. As a result of the short supply, we are experiencing rising home values due to sellers receiving multiple offers well over list price. Truth be told, you are going to receive varying opinions from different professionals, but we here at Custom Home Realty are happy to share our thoughts. Read on for our input and please don't hesitate to leave feedback or get in touch with further questions. 

Over the years, Massachusetts has seen immense growth in the tech, science, pharmaceutical, medical and education fields. The schools in the Metro West are beyond superb. The shopping and transportation services are exceptional, and the proximity to major cities such as Boston, Providence and Worcester are all with-in reach from so many Massachusetts locations. Depending on the town, the taxes are relatively affordable and our police and fire departments are exceptional. Did I mention Foxboro Stadium and Fenway Park? Who wouldn't want to buy a property in Massachusetts? So, now you have our brief explanation for the demand. As for the shortage, well that's a whole other story. We'll get into that in my next post. 

So what does this mean for buyers looking to purchase a home in the MetroWest and Central MA areas? As a buyer, you'll need to be ready to join the mad dash for the open house, have a skilled buyers agent, and secure an iron clad pre-qualification. Don't just walk into an open house and tell the agent hosting you want to write an offer. You'll want to do some research and find an agent with stellar reviews, and be sure she/he is versed in bidding war strategy. Honestly, when it comes down to the sellers nitty gritty review of five similar offers, money usually talks. The amount you finance in combination with your offer amount will generally be the determining factor. Please see our list of tips below to help ensure your offer stands out above the rest:

1. Sell your home before placing an offer on a property. This removes the need for a home sale contingency, thus making you less of a risk to sellers. Not sure what your home is worth? Get in touch with Custom Home Realty and we can help.

2. Keep an open mind when it comes to adding an escalation clause to your offer. Some agents will suggest this, but understandably some buyers are weary. However, an escalation clause can work out well when you are bidding against 5 other buyers. As long as you keep the appraisal contingency, "property must appraise at or above purchase price," and you are comfortable with the max escalation price, it will generally help your offer stand out above the rest.

3. Review the local comps with your agent before writing an offer. This helps to ensure you are not offering more than the home is worth. Occasionaly, buyers are desperate and willing to pay more than the market value. In this situation, it can prove to be difficult to resell in the future should the need arise.  

4. Remember to be flexible when it comes to close dates. 

Once you've made it past the offer acceptance, you'll then need to make it past the home inspection, p&s and appraisal hurdle. After that, it's generally smooth sailing to closing..  as long as you are working with a good lender, and great realtor. Good luck out there!

Stay tuned for our next blog on Low Inventory and Seller Benefits.