James Valletti and Andrew Britt here with the Paul Kaplan Group/Bennion Deville Homes in Palm Springs.  It’s a seller’s market here in the desert – high demand, and record low inventory.  We’re seeing numerous multiple offer situations, and plenty of homes selling above-ask.  But it’s not always the highest purchase price that wins out.  In such a competitive market, we wanted to share a few ways to help make YOUR offer stand out other than paying the most money…

  1. Cash Is King.  It’s an old cliche, but it’s true.  If you have the resources to pay cash, you can offer a quick close and don’t have to worry about getting a loan.  This is all good news to the seller!  If you have the funds on hand to make a cash offer, but still prefer to borrow, consider making an offer with no loan contingency.  This is the next best thing, and signals to the seller that even if you get denied a mortgage, you’ll still go through with the sale.
  2. Shorten or Eliminate Your Investigation Periods.  In California, 17 days is the standard buyer’s investigation contingency.  But if you know a home inspector who works fast, a pest inspector you trust, or other vendors who can quickly make sure the property you’re buying is in tip-top shape, why not think about a shorter contingency window?  The less time the seller has to wait to know you’re ready to proceed with the sale, the better!  
  3. If You’re Financing, You Could Consider Waiving Your Appraisal Contingency.  An appraisal is an estimated valuation of a home, often required by lenders to make sure they’re not over-lending on a property.  Like the investigation period, the standard appraisal window is 17 days, and if a home doesn’t appraise at its agreed-upon purchase price, the buyer may be able to pull out of the deal.  That’s bad news for the seller.  If you have the means to eliminate this risk altogether, it may be worth thinking about waiving your appraisal contingency.  This shows that you’re willing to go through with the sale regardless of what the home is independently valued at.  It’s not without risk, and you’ll want to be prepared to make up the difference between the appraised value of the home and your agreed-upon purchase price, but it’s definitely one way to stand out in a sea of offers.
  4. Find Out What’s Important to the Seller.  Is it a quick close, higher purchase price, rent back situation, or furniture purchase that makes life easier for the seller?  Build that into your offer, so they has some incentive to pick yours.
  5. Include A Personal Note About Why This Particular House Is Special To You.  It may seem cheesy, but the old-fashioned art of letter-writing could work wonders.  Sometimes, the way to a seller’s keys – is through their heart.

We love working with buyers, and would be happy to help you write an offer on your dream home.  Send us a message on here to get started, or visit our website at escapetopalmsprings.net

This content is not the product of the National Association of REALTORS®, and may not reflect NAR's viewpoint or position on these topics and NAR does not verify the accuracy of the content.