Pending sales have been increasing for three consecutive months, remaining at their highest level since June 2013, according to the National Association of Realtors®. Here in the South, pending home sales have increased 4 percent, which if the trend continues will have a significant impact on the home buying community.
What does this housing demand mean for potential home buyers?
It means that demand for homes is stronger and that the activity is driven mainly by long-term homeowners. According to the March Realtors Confidence Index, about 15% of first-quarter 2015 home sales were made to investors, down from 19% in the first quarter of 2014. This poses both good and bad news.
The good news: It looks as though the housing demand is driven by increased job opportunity and economic growth. Where it was once difficult to secure a home, now traditional homebuyers are able to win bids over investors.
The not so good news: The housing market is hot right now and high demand means an increase in competitive offers. Now, it may not be enough to simply bid on a home. You may have to go a little above and beyond to secure that home you’ve always wanted.
But don’t give up just yet. Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Beazley , REALTORS® is here to help!
So how do you make your bid stand out among the crowd?
Here are 3 competitive strategies we love!
Write a cover letter: 43 percent of winning offers used a cover letter in March, up from 35 percent from last year. Appeal to the seller’s emotions, but sound professional. Add a family photo and explain how owning the home will affect your life. Tugging on the seller’s heartstrings could be what wins the day.
Have your finances in order: Demonstrate to the seller that you’ll be able to seal financing and close on time. Get pre-approved for a mortgage in advance. Have all your paperwork in order, and be ready to document the funds you’ll use for your down payment.
Pay your seller’s closing fees. In a bidding war, offering to take care of closing fees may satisfy the seller more than increasing your bid. The seller’s costs aren’t much, but covering the expense does make the seller feel really good.
Remember: You don’t have to have the highest bid or pay in all-cash. You just have to make the seller’s life easier, and these three tips will help do that.
While inventory in some areas may not be able to keep up, we have plenty of homes available in the Augusta metro and Aiken, SC area. Summerlin, Woodlief, Gregg’s Mill, Cornerstone, and The Retreat at Storm Branch have a variety of floorplans to choose from with prices to fit any budget.
Aside from the highly rated Greenbrier Schools and great Columbia County Location, Summerlin offers all the advantages of living in an upscale community without the upscale prices. The neighborhood is convenient to shopping, medical facilities and recreational facilities as well Clarks Hill/Lake Strom Thurmond. Homes here range from $169,900 to $219,900.
This community is located in beautiful Evans, Georgia. Homes at Woodlief are tucked away on large wooded lots, making the scenery of the neighborhood tranquil and spacious. If you are looking for a home with a basement, large deck, and crawl spaces, this is the neighborhood for you. Homes range from $254,900 to $304,900.
Gregg’s Mill is located in Graniteville, SC. 100% financing is available and the builders are offering as much as $5,000 in buyer incentives or closing costs.
The neighborhood is equipped with a resort style swimming pool, sidewalks and large spacious lots that are priced to sell. Homes at Gregg’s Mill range from $157,500 to $238,900.
This Aiken, South Carolina community offers single story homes, two-story homes, and townhomes at great prices. Highly rated schools, parks, and shopping just around the corner are just a few of the benefits you’ll receive living here. Homes here range from $155,900 to $274,900.
The Retreat at Storm Branch:
The Retreat at Storm Branch is an estate style community in Beech Island, SC with beautiful tree-lined streets, walking and hiking trails, and large private lots which reach up to 3.56 acres. Here residents enjoy the convenience of being close to major metropolitan areas while still feeling secluded from the hustle and bustle of city living. Homes range from $257,900 to $319,900.
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Beazley, REALTORS® also has real estate in North Augusta, SC, Grovetown, Columbia County GA near Fort Gordon, Evans, Georgia, Augusta, GA, Hephzibah, GA,>Aiken County, SC, and Grovetown, GA.