Sponsored: 8 Tips for Winning in a Multiple-Offer Situation

  • May 31, 2012

by UrbanTurf Sponsor

DC is experiencing major population growth and the real estate market is (once again) becoming incredibly competitive—particularly while inventory is low.

Sponsored: 8 Tips for Winning in a Multiple-Offer Situation: Figure 1
Holly Worthington, Long & Foster's expert on multiple-offers situations

Most of the city’s properties listed at under $1 million are now getting multiple offers. And to complicate matters, interested investors have an edge on the average buyer, as they are more willing to pay cash and more likely to write offers with few or no contingencies.

Holly Worthington, Long & Foster’s managing broker and an expert on multiple offer buying situations, offers some tips on how to compete in this environment.

Worthington has nearly 30 years of DC real estate experience and currently manages Long & Foster’s Chevy Chase and Woodley Park offices. In 2005, she chaired a committee on multiple offer buying situations for the Greater Capital Area Association of Realtors (GCAAR). She then co-wrote a Realtor’s guide on how to handle multiple offers and, later, taught a GCAAR course on the topic.

Are you in competition to buy a home in DC? Heed Worthington’s advice…

1. Make the strongest offer you can. Use an escalation clause with at least a 3 percent increment of the sale price, and cap your bid at the highest price you can comfortably pay.

2. Give a large earnest money deposit. Ten percent of the sale price is compelling.

3. Have a very short (2-3 day) home inspection contingency. Or, with permission from the seller, do a pre-contract inspection so you can submit your offer without a home inspection contingency.

4. Include a very short financing contingency. If you are financing your purchase, tell your lender you are in competition and ask for the shortest financing contingency period possible. Of course, an offer without a financing contingency is best, but be sure to ask your agent and lender about the risks.

5. Consider removing the appraisal contingency. In a multiple offer situation, the seller may be reluctant to accept a high-price offer that has an appraisal contingency. This is because the language of an appraisal contingency allows for price re-negotiation if the appraised value is lower than the contracted price. If your offer has a financing contingency that includes a low down payment then your financing is most likely already contingent on appraisal. Removing this contingency is a way to potentially set your offer apart from the competition, but ask your lender or agent to explain the risk.

6. Get a feel for the competition. Ask the listing agent if he/she plans to write an offer for the property as well. (The listing agent may have either a buyer or been approached to write an offer.) If so, ask the listing agent whether his/her broker will be presenting the offers to the seller. Also ask daily—until the offer deadline—about how many offers are registered and if more are likely to come in based on the interest level.

7. Personally presenting offers to the seller, though uncommon, is effective. Some sellers are willing to let buyer’s agents present offers in person. This can give the seller an idea of who is working on the other side of the transaction. It can also give the seller an opportunity to get a broader picture of the buyer. If an in-person presentation isn’t possible, couple your offer with a letter explaining your interest to the seller.

8. And finally, if your agent tells you to write a strong offer because you are competing, do it—especially if you’d be heartbroken to lose the property. You usually have only one chance to be chosen as the buyer, and most buyers regret not being aggressive in this market.

If you are interested in contacting Holly Worthington, click here; or get in touch directly by phone (202-363-9700) or by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

This article originally published at https://dc.urbanturf.com/articles/blog/sponsored_8_tips_for_winning_in_a_multiple-offer_situation/5591

DC Real Estate Guides

Short guides to navigating the DC-area real estate market

We've collected all our helpful guides for buying, selling and renting in and around Washington, DC in one place. Visit guides.urbanturf.com or start browsing below!

Northern Virginia

Profiles of 14 neighborhoods across Northern Virginia

Looking to Give People A Reason to Stay Past 6pm
Happily Straddling the Line Between City and Suburb
Columbia Pike
Arlington’s Neglected Stepchild is Getting a Makeover
Crystal City
Turning Lemons into Lemonade
Lyon Village
Developing An Air of Exclusivity?
Hitting Its Growth Spurt
An Urban Village Hitting Its Stride
Del Ray
Virginia’s Small Town Near the Big City
Eisenhower Avenue
The Vibrancy Might Take a Few Years
The Quiet Neighborhood By the Beltway
Old Town
Mayberry By The Potomac
132 Commerical-Free Acres
Downtown Falls Church
Staying the Same in the Midst of Change
Tysons Corner
Radical Change Could Be On The Way

See more Northern Virginia »


Profiles of 14 neighborhoods in suburban Maryland

Small-Town Living in the State Capital
Bedroom Community Gets Buzzing Cache
Cabin John
In With The New While Maintaining the Old
Chevy Chase
Affluence, Green Lawns and Pricey Homes
Downtown Silver Spring
Experiencing a Resurgence After a Bumpy History
A Suburb on Steroids
Rockville Town Square
Despite the Dynamism, Still Somewhat Generic
Takoma Park
More Than a Little Bit Quirky
A Foodie Magnet on the Verge of Change
Capitol Heights
Kudzu, Front Porches and Crime
Glass Half Full or Half Empty?
Mount Rainier
Artists, Affordable Homes and A Silo Full of Corn
National Harbor
A Development Rises Next to the Potomac
Riverdale Park
A Town Looking For Its Identity

See more Maryland »

Northwest DC

30+ neighborhood profiles for the city's biggest quadrant

16th Street Heights
DC's Sleeper Neighborhood
Where (Almost) Everyone Knows Your Name
AU Park
One of DC’s Last Frontiers Before the Suburbs
DC’s Northern Neighborhood on the Cusp
DC’s 535 House Neighborhood
Cathedral Heights
Do You Know Where That Is?
Chevy Chase DC
Not to Be Confused With the Other Chevy Chase
Cleveland Park
Coming Back After A Rough Year
Columbia Heights
DC’s Most Diverse Neighborhood, But For How Long?
An Island of Serenity East of the Park
Dupont Circle
The Best of DC (For a Price)
Foggy Bottom & West End
Where the Institutional Meets the International
Forest Hills
Ambassadors and Adventurous Architecture
Foxhall Village
350 Homes Just West of Georgetown
Friendship Heights
A Shopping Mecca With a Few Places to Live
History, Hoyas and H&M
Glover Park
One of DC’s Preppier and More Family-Friendly Neighborhoods
A Posh View From Embassy Row
LeDroit Park
A Quiet Enclave in the Middle of the City
Logan Circle
Trendy Now, But Not By Accident
Mount Pleasant
Sought-After Homes Surround Main Street in Transition
Mount Vernon Triangle
From Seedy to Sought-After
The Long, Skinny Neighborhood at the City’s Northwest Edge
Park View
It’s Not Petworth
Penn Quarter/Chinatown
DC’s Go-Go-Go Neighborhood
Getting a Vibrancy of Its Own
The Duke’s Former Stomping Ground
Shepherd Park
DC’s Garden of Diversity
Spring Valley
A Suburb With a DC Zip Code
Not To Be Confused With Takoma Park
Not Quite Like Its Neighbors
U Street Corridor
The Difference a Decade Makes
Woodley Park
Deceptively Residential
Adams Morgan
No Longer DC’s Hippest Neighborhood, But Still Loved by Residents

See more Northwest DC »

Southwest DC

The little quadrant that could

Southwest Waterfront
A Neighborhood Where A Change Is Gonna Come

See more Southwest DC »

Northeast DC

Profiles of 10 neighborhoods in NE

New Development Could Shake Up Pastoral Peace
A Little Bit of Country Just Inside the District’s Borders
Not to Be Confused With Bloomingdale
Fort Totten
Five Years Could Make a Big Difference
H Street
A Place To Party, and To Settle Down
The Northeast Neighborhood That Few Know About
Michigan Park
A Newsletter-On-Your-Doorstep Community
Evolving from a Brand to a Neighborhood
Ripe for Investment Right About Now
The Difference 5 Years Makes
Big Houses, A Dusty Commercial Strip and Potential

See more Northeast DC »

Southeast DC

6 neighborhoods from Capitol Hill to East of the River

Capitol Riverfront
Still Growing
Hill East
Capitol Hill’s Lesser Known Neighbor
Congress Heights
Gradually Rising
Notable for Its Neighborliness
Historic Anacostia
Future Promise Breeds Cautious Optimism
Eastern Market
A More European Way of Living

See more Southeast DC »