Can You Still Buy a Home in Los Angeles in This Sellers’ Market?

In this tight Los Angeles seller’s market Los Angeles home buyers are becoming more and more disillusioned and ready to give up.  Don’t.  You can still get the home you want with a little preparation and  stick-with-it-ness.

When a buyer is just starting their search things may look hopeless. They will wander into an open house and go home and think about it for a few days and then ask the Realtor® about the possibility of making an offer. When the Realtor® calls on the home they find that it already has offers on the table which are being considered. Or the buyer will have had a cursory discussion with a lender and not provided the information for the lender to be able to provide the pre-approval to accompany an offer.

You can still buy a home in Los AngelesThe longer the low housing inventory continues, the more buyers will drop out of the market, reducing the competition somewhat. This is your chance to move in and make an offer which may be accepted. How can you be successful?

  • Make sure you have worked with a lender and know your buying power and provide everything necessary for the lender to write the pre-approval letter.
  • Make sure you are able to make  20% down payment because anything less in a competitive situation will not fly, especially when cash buyers are involved. And yes, you can compete with cash buyers since often they don’t offer full price and you may be able to compete on terms.
  • When a home comes on the market which looks like a possibility, get in in to see it as soon as possible.
  • Make your decision to move forward as soon as possible. Sometimes offers will not be accepted until a certain date, but if there is no mention of a date, make your offer. Sometimes when you take a couple of days to think about it the home is already under contract when you decide.
  • If you love the home and it is well-priced, make a full-price offer, because you know that if you like it the other buyers left out there will also like it. Hopefully you are not at the top of your price range because you will not be able to compete in a counter offer situation.
  • Make the offer as clean as possible. Don’t ask for too much. You will still have the chance to do a home inspection during escrow and if there is something major wrong you can ask for repairs or back out.
  • When the counter offer comes in the seller will probably have countered other buyers also. They may give the terms on the counter such as the price they want, terms to be changed, etc. Try and meet that price and the terms as best you can.
  • You may also want to write a letter to the seller telling them a little about yourself and how much you are looking forward to making their home your home.

The bottom line is, not every buyer is the same. Work with your Los Angeles Realtor® to make yourself stand out. The more solid you appear and the less problems it looks like you are going to cause during the escrow process, the stronger your offer will be considered.  There is a home out there for you. Don’t give up.

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Jane Peters

Jane Peters is a Los Angeles Realtor®, specializing in absentee owners, out-of-town-buyers and those needing that extra personal touch to make the buying and selling of Los Angeles real estate a smooth and, believe it or not, fun process.

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