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Sellers' market is here
By: BJ Matson

Montgomery County, Maryland
Montgomery County, Maryland


I'm here to tell you that ideal circumstances are making it a great time to sell in Montgomery County, Maryland.
If you haven't heard, Inventory is at a historical low in our area. There is a serious lack of homes available.
When one finally does hit the market, it's gone in a few days.

My client today just lost out on our 2nd attempt to buy a home. We lost out on our 1st property that was listed for a week and we had offered full price.

Today we put in an Offer on a home that was only on the market for 3 DAYS.
Tonight the Seller's Agent had 6 OFFERS ON THE TABLE. 6. Two of them were all cash offers.
Our Offer was at FULL asking price and we asked for $0 seller help.
Needless to say the Seller jumped on the all cash, full priced Offer.

So now we're back to the drawing board again. This is not an isolated case. 2012 this happened all the time... but it's continuing to get even tighter. I have added her to my Buyer clients who are waiting for their potential home to hit the market. She has been fully approved with Lender Letter in hand. We know her price range, and exactly what type of property she's looking for in the AREA she wants. Twice a day, every day, I check the mris database to see what has hit the market.
When we see a home that fits, we go out same day. Still, a Seller will wait a couple of days before reviewing Offers which gives time for other offers to come in.

Buyers
Just to have a shot right now you must be fully prepared.
-- Get approved by your Lender first and have your letter in hand.
-- Complete the Financial Information Worksheet with your Realtor. Many Sellers are asking for this. With multiple offers on the table, they want to see how strong the Buyer is financially. What if the house doesn't appraise? With home value appreciation, it will be harder to find recent sold comps to support this higher asking price or even higher agreed-on price. Does the buyer have some savings where they can come up with the difference between the appraised value & the agreed price?
-- Give a strong Earnest Money Deposit. This is where you show your commitment to buying the home. You will still be protected with contingencies; inspection, appraisal, financing... Don't give the typical 1%. I highly recommend 3% to 5%.
-- Be ready to close soon. There are still Lenders out there who can finance in 30 to 45 days. Be prepared for this time frame.
-- Be careful not to load too many contingencies on the Offer.

I can't tell you how many of my buyer clients learn the hard way. It takes losing the first couple of deals we make an Offer on... to realize our FULL price Offer still isn't cutting it. We need to be prepared, quick to act, and write our Offer at full price just to have a chance. An Escalation Clause is a great idea if you're not ready to go over asking price with initial offer.

Sellers
There is a very strong Sellers' market right now, and this puts upward pressure on the pricing of your home. There hasn't been a better time to sell for many years. Combine this limited inventory with the very low interest rates, and this gives you an increased pool of potential buyers who can afford your home.
Starting the process;
-- Set a target date to list your home. We work backwards from there.
-- have me pull data for you. Recent sales, combined with what's listed and what's under contract
-- Let's tour your property and discuss. What should be addressed? Where will you get return on $ spent. Together we formulate a game plan to prepare & meet our target listing date.
-- the marketing begins. I sell your home!

Last month 163 of the 753 closed transactions in Montgomery County were paid with ALL cash. That's 1 out of every 5 homes.

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Sellers' market is here
By: BJ Matson
   
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