REThink Real Estate
Set yourself up for success by being strategic when you know the seller is stalling:
1. Make a pre-emptive offer, if the seller will look at it, but make sure it's enticing enough to warrant the seller's reversal of their stall tactics.
2. Offer more than asking -- even if you're the only offer. The seller will be more likely to accept it without stalling.
3. Get clear on the list-price-to-sale-price ratio of recent, similar listings so you can know what the place is likely to sell for and what price is justified. Then, make your personal highest/best offer up front.
4. If there's an offer date set, and the seller doesn't want to look at pre-emptive offers, don't make your offer until the scheduled date and time. You want to have the most up-to-the-minute information about how many other offers there are before you make a final decision as to your offer price and terms.
5. Be aggressive with every element of your offer, every time (e.g., shorten your contingency periods as much as possible; sign off on advance disclosures in advance; submit proof of viable financing, etc.).
6. Don't get your heart set on any property until you have a signed contract in hand!
Tara-Nicholle Nelson is author of "The Savvy Woman's Homebuying Handbook" and "Trillion Dollar Women: Use Your Power to Make Buying and Remodeling Decisions." Ask her a real estate question online or visit her Web site, www.rethinkrealestate.com.
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