I never thought that I would hear the words “I can’t find a home” from a buyer, but five years after the nationwide real estate crash, this seems to be a reoccurring theme. In April and May, there were only about 5,000 single-family homes on the market in the entire Denver MLS. That is historically low and shockingly sparse for a city of three million plus people. As the saying goes, “it is what it is,” so how do we handle it going forward?
If you are buyer in a seller’s market, you need to find a top-notch agent. Listen… when it really gets tough to find a home and you have to buy, a rock star real estate agent will be worth his or her weight in gold. This is where I believe agents provide real value and significant service to their clients. I am not sure how all realtors are doing it, but I can tell you what our team is doing to help buyers. Here is an excerpt of an email we sent to buyers who were desperate to find a home:
Step One: We realize that this inventory shortage problem is not going away, at least not this year. Finding a home that hits the MLS and getting that under contract is a real challenge. So we have started accessing a database we have of homes that are not listed. These people are thinking about selling. We are calling them daily to see if we can show their home, if they would sell, and at what price.
Step Two: We are looking in the MLS at all the homes that have been withdrawn or have expired. These are homes that did not sell for whatever reason and were taken off the market. We are starting to call these people to find out if they would be willing to sell again.
Step Three. We are setting up all our clients on listing alerts. It means that the minute a house hits the MLS and matches your criteria; it gets sent to your email. Don’t assume that we are seeing the same email on the same day. If you see a home that got emailed to you and you want to see it… email us or call us right away.
Step Four: We are contacting other real estate agents whom we know and have done business with. We are sharing with them what our buyers’ needs are and are asking them if they know of something coming on the market in those areas, or if they know of someone willing to sell.
If a good home that is priced right hits the MLS, we need to go see it right away (usually that same day). We have brought on some additional showing agents to help accomplish this. If you find that you like the house and want to make an offer, expect to compete with two or three other offers. That might mean you having to offer more than the asking price. We have started using escalating clauses in our contracts in an effort to make sure that our clients win the house. If you would like me to explain how these work, feel free to contact me.
If you have a home to sell after you buy, the good news is that you’ll be on the receiving end of seller’s market.
If new home construction is an option, then let’s start talking about who is building where, the costs, the timing, etc.
If your realtor is not doing this for you, maybe you should consider talking with us.
Start your Colorado Dream Home Search now!