Do You Recognize the Early Signs of a Bidding War?

The Ann and Melinda Group


Do You Recognize the Early Signs of a Bidding War?

In today’s low inventory housing market, it can be a mission in and of itself just to find a new Ho Ho Kus home for sale that fits the needs of you and your family — and much more of a challenge to close a purchase among a sea of competition. It is not uncommon for homes on the market, especially those in growing cities, affluent neighborhoods, or with unique selling points, to end up in a bidding war, quickly running up the tab for buyers. Here are three signs of a forthcoming bidding war and tips to help you navigate the process.

1. Compare the Asking Price to Other Properties

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There’s hardly anything more exciting than finding a good deal on a major purchase like Ho Ho Kus real estate. Ironically, a relatively low asking price — because of how attractive it can appear to buyers — can spark a bidding war on a property. Use whatever resources you have available to do research on comparable properties, but also get your agent’s opinion quickly. Homes in the same neighborhood as your target home and a similar size will be the best comparisons. And the sale price of those homes will be the best indicator of how much money other buyers will be willing to spend on a home. Good deals can be deceptive in that they invite bidding wars, and if you find one, your goal should be entering into a contract, completing inspections, and closing the deal as quickly as possible.

2. Communicate With Your Agent

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As a buyer represented by a real estate agent in your search for a new home, it is critical to have a clear line of communication open and available. Go through your finances, your timeline for purchase, and a hard cap for how much you are willing to spend. Your realtor will be your best friend and resource for learning about the real estate market in your neighborhood. Ask questions about sale prices for comparable properties, growth rates, and their feel for the development of the real estate market in their area.

Your agent will also likely know the listing agent and can have a meaningful dialogue to uncover certain terms that are most important to the seller. Having that information can make the difference in your success, as sometimes there are terms beyond price that are critically important.

3. Research the Market

Trends in the economy can have a massive impact on the housing market and your competition. Understanding the current state of the market, both nationally and locally, can give you a good sense of what to expect when you begin putting in offers for your new home. Take some time to learn about the housing market at multiple levels — nationally, within your state, and, most importantly, in the city and specific neighborhood where you are looking to purchase.

Are you looking to buy a home in an area with a booming industry? A developing, metropolitan city? A growing urban landscape? Any kind of significant growth is a sign that property values are increasing — and with it, the competition for buying property in that area. The local economy is often one of the best indicators of what to expect when looking to buy a new home.

If you are searching for a Ho-Ho-Kus home or real estate in any other part of Bergen County, know that being in a New York City commuter area typically keeps prices and demand higher than the national average. The area always remains more insulated from deep shifts that are felt in other parts of the country, so don’t rely on national trends to predict what’s happening locally.

Nationally, pending home sales fell by about ten percent in September 2022, which has a major effect on the level of competition you will encounter when trying to purchase a home in some areas, but not as much in our local area. Speak to a local realtor to learn more about the market in your specific area and how it will affect your journey in purchasing property.

Tips for Success When Avoiding A Bidding War

Here are a few tips to help navigate the purchase of property — whether you’re trying to avoid a bidding war or win one.

Get prequalified or preapproved for a mortgage

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One of the most important tasks of purchasing property is working with banks and lenders to get a loan. If you are in good financial standing, getting prequalified for a mortgage will help you close your deal sooner and minimize the amount of time it takes to navigate the purchase process. Even better, get a preapproval letter, a more accurate assessment of your credit and financials, to accelerate the buying process and show sellers that you are a serious buyer. Getting preapproved for a mortgage will vastly speed up the transaction time and minimize the number of days between sending an offer and closing the transaction.

Stick to your budget

Navigating the landscape of the real estate market can be an emotionally tiring process for any buyer. Before formally beginning your search for a new home, always take some time to take stock of your financial situation and devise a budget that makes sense for you. In the heat of a bidding war — especially with a home you have fallen in love with — it can be easy to forget the importance of your budget. Don’t blast past your budget in fear that you will lose your dream home in a bidding war. Keep in mind that there are countless other homes that are just as wonderful, and don’t let your emotions dig you into a financial hole.

Make an attractive offer

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As a buyer, there are a few ways you can make your offer stand out from the rest without offering more money. If you don’t need a loan or mortgage to complete the purchase of the new property, making a cash offer can be incredibly attractive to sellers. If you’re confident with the quality of the home, you may also consider limiting inspection requests on the home so you can close the deal as fast as possible. Attaching few or no contingencies to your offer will always help you stand out.

Start Searching For Homes

Are you ready to begin searching for homes for sale in Ho Ho Kus? This quaint New Jersey borough has seen a 4% growth in property value in the past year and is a popular place for those looking to settle in a tight-knit community. To learn more about this scenic town reach out to The Ann + Melinda Group.

*Header photo courtesy of Shutterstock

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