You are in the process of buying a home in Los Angeles, and have gotten close to finding that ideal property only to be outbid by other buyers who were able to offer more or were all-cash buyers. It is very frustrating. So what do you do next?
You start to look at properties that have been on the market for a while. Anything that has been active for more than 30 days must have something wrong with it, right? It is either overpriced, in a less than desirable location, or needs a fair amount of work. You view the home and it happens to be just the home for you. Maybe the location doesn’t bother you or you are prepared to do the work, and they just reduced the price. There is a feeling that the seller is motivated so you make an offer below the current asking price and are sure that this one is going to be yours, especially since there are no other offers on the table.
Beware, Murphy is watching. The minute you make your offer you can almost always be sure at least another one is going to come in. Something goes out into the airwaves and if you like the home, someone else is going to also. Now you are in competition and you hope that the second offer does not come in at or closer to the asking price, or that at least the seller will counter. If the second buyer knows there is another offer already in then they are going to be more realistic about theirs.
The point is, that the present Los Angeles real estate market primarily is in the seller’s favor. If you really like the home make as close to your best offer as you can, leaving a little wiggle room in case a counter comes back. Rarely, if ever, are you going to be the only potential buyer of a property in Los Angeles, so don’t get comfortable thinking that you are going to get a deal. Make an offer with the idea that it is going to go into multiples and give it your best.
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