Home Buying: What Is a Blind Offer?

There are many home-buying strategies, and some are riskier than others. One of the trickiest options is the blind offer. In the right situations, a blind offer makes sense, but it can easily backfire. 

blind offer

Here’s what a blind offer is, and when you should (or shouldn’t) attempt one.

Are Blind Offers the Right Home Buying Strategy for You?

The definition of a blind offer is simple: It is drafting a purchase contract for a property without having inspected the property in person. In other words, the buyer is going in “blind.”

When making a blind offer, you may not be completely blind. If there are photographs of the property or an online virtual reality walkthrough, you may be able to get some idea of the property’s condition. However, because you’ve never visited the property personally, you must rely on other sources.

The primary benefit of a blind offer is that it’s quick and can potentially speed up the purchasing process. There are several scenarios where this makes sense, including:

  • Flipping – You may have no intention of utilizing the property yourself and are simply looking to flip it on the market, there may be no reason to give it a thorough inspection in person.
  • Long-term investment – Some operations, such as property management groups, may simply want to buy land for the sake of longer-term plans. As with flipping a property, if don’t care what’s currently going on with the property, a blind offer can make sense.
  • Low housing availability – If you need a property in a particular area with low volume and high demand, blind offers can be a way of improving your chances of a successful purchase. 

The Dangers of Blind Offers

The main risk of a blind offer is obvious: You will not likely know about problems with the property, such as neglected maintenance resulting in repair issues. The seller is required to disclose many problems as part of the sale, but there could easily be others that aren’t disclosed.

Also, keep in mind that in most states a property’s seller is only required to disclose issues they are personally aware of. If they haven’t conducted a property inspection lately, there could easily be hidden problems. These problems could lead to expensive repairs.

Blind offers are typically a home-buying strategy for investors only. If you’re buying a home to live in or to utilize as a rental, be sure to inspect it in person.

Closing Costs for Sellers: Four Things To Know

closing costs for sellers

When selling a house, it’s important to keep in mind that you will have some fees to pay to complete the transaction. Depending on the situation, these fees will probably be around 5%-10% of the final closing price. Fortunately, you don’t have to pay out of pocket – the fees will be deducted from the proceeds of the sale.

In this article, we’ll discuss the most common closing costs you can expect to pay when selling a house.

What Closing Costs Will a Seller Need To Pay?

1. Real estate agent fees

The largest fee you’ll pay will most likely be the agent fee. In most situations, the seller pays the fees for both the selling and purchasing agents, which are typically 3% of the closing price for each agent. So, you’ll likely pay 6% total.

It’s possible to avoid half of those fees by selling the house without an agent. However, that opens the possibility of getting a lower-than-desired price for the home. Plus, that leaves you with the responsibility of doing the seller’s paperwork yourself.

These fees are theoretically negotiable. However, you would have to be in an excellent bargaining position – such as having a highly-desired property and multiple bidders – for this to be an option.

2. Taxes and fees

Your city, and possibly your state, will also require a percentage of the sale. The exact nature of the fees and who pays them will vary between areas, so be sure to do your homework.

In rare cases, you might be able to negotiate for the buyer to pay your taxes, but this would again require you to have a very advantageous bargaining position.

3. Title search and insurance

In nearly all areas, sellers need to prove they’re the legal owners of a property. This will require a title search through government records and may require an attorney’s oversight as well. 

You will also be expected to take out title insurance, which is insurance against any unexpected complications regarding the property’s ownership. This insurance is inexpensive and shouldn’t add much to the costs.

4. Existing mortgages or liens

If your home is under a mortgage or has a government lien against it, you will most likely have to pay those. This might happen before the sale or as part of the overall sale negotiations.  

In short: Do your research and know what fees you’ll need to pay before selling a house. This will avoid any unexpected surprises!

New Home Buying Tips for 2024

buy a new house

Are you planning to buy a new house in 2024? You must stay on top of the rapidly changing market. Housing prices are fluctuating and are currently higher than normal. Mortgage rates are high as well. You’re going to need to be savvy to get a good price for the home you want while getting a mortgage at the rate you want.

Here are a few home-buying tips that might make the process a little easier.

Four Critical Home Buying Tips in 2024

1. Look into new construction

In years past, the recommendation was to buy an existing home, but the situation has changed in the 2020s. The supply of existing homes on the market is currently quite low, and prices on them can be high; possibly too high when compared to the real value of the property.

Meanwhile, many construction companies are hurting for work. This has created a situation in which you may be able to get an excellent deal on new construction, especially if you’re willing to forego fancy amenities such as granite countertops. 

2. First home? Make the most of incentives

Many states have programs in place to incentivize home purchases for first-time buyers. Depending on the state, these may come as a financial rebate on the home, tax credits, or special low mortgage rates. Right now, it pays to do some research and see if there’s any way you can qualify for government assistance.

3. Shop around for mortgage rates

With mortgage rates so high in 2024, you should do at least as much shopping for your mortgage as you do for your new home. Don’t automatically use the lender with which your real estate agent partners. Contact every bank and lender you can find and spend plenty of time exploring your options. Having a pre-approved mortgage in hand can also be a big help when bidding for homes!

4. Consider waiting until later this year

It might be a good idea to simply wait for a few months before getting serious about your purchase. It isn’t guaranteed, but many market watchers think the Federal Reserve will lower prime rates in a few months, which would lead to mortgage rates dropping as well. You may be able to get a much better deal if you hold off on purchasing.

Finally, as always, be sure to look for a great real estate agent who will help you find the best deals! Click here to learn more.

Four Home Selling Mistakes to Avoid in 2024

Home Selling Mistakes

You’re in a better position than you think if you want to sell your home in 2024. The current volume of existing homes on the market is low, which makes it a seller’s market. Still, you need to be smart. Several home selling mistakes could cost you big money, or even prevent a sale from going through. Avoid these missteps.

Don’t Make These Home Selling Mistakes

1. Failure to disclose property issues

Few things can tank a home sale faster than if the buyer discovers you’ve tried to cover up issues that must be legally disclosed. Know the disclosure laws for your area and be sure to follow them to the letter. Also, with the market volume so low, buyers may be more willing to buy homes with issues.

2. Overlooking the costs of long sales periods

Cash buyers are more common on the market today than in years past. They typically offer less money than you may be asking but offer the assurance of a fast sale with few chances of complications.

Don’t be too attached to your initial asking price. Think about how much it costs to maintain the home month after month while keeping it in sellable condition. Those costs directly cut into your profits. Selling now for a lower price could easily be more profitable than holding out for months hoping for a better offer, so do the math before deciding.

3. Poor photography

Bad photographs are a major turn-off to buyers. Even if the home itself is in bad shape, people can spot cellphone snaps and will be wary if they look low-quality.

If you want your home to be more attractive to buyers, hiring a professional home photographer is an investment that is easily justified. Great photographs will do a lot to sell your home, even before a potential buyer steps foot inside. 

4. Poor staging

Finally, if you want your home to sell, you need to make it look as presentable as possible. It should look like a “model home.” Keep the rooms immaculately clean and try to remove all signs of habitation whenever someone comes to visit. Buyers want to imagine themselves in your home, and seeing your stuff all over the place will create a psychological barrier for them.

Plus, don’t forget that a great real estate agent can help you get better prices. Click here to learn more!

Does It Make Sense To Buy a House in 2024?

buy a house

The new year is here, and for many people, that will bring the question: Is 2024 a good year to buy a house?

The housing market is in flux, which is leading to a lot of uncertainty among would-be buyers. The current mortgage interest rates are a particular sticking point, having hit a high of 7.79% on 30-year-fixed mortgages by the end of 2023. That will add considerably to monthly payments for a new home.

However, interest rates alone shouldn’t be a reason to avoid buying. There are some unique aspects to the housing market right now which means it could still be a great time to buy.

4 Reasons To Buy a House Despite High Interest Rates

1. Home prices are continuing to (slowly) rise

While the upswing hasn’t been dramatic, home prices have been creeping upwards by a few percent a year for a few years now. Much of this has been driven by investment groups buying property in bulk, which creates demand and pushes prices up. Nothing suggests this trend is likely to change any time soon. Pushes to limit corporate property investment are limited to a handful of regions. This means even with higher interest rates, waiting another year could end up costing more than you’d be paying today.

Also…

2. You can refinance later

Just because you have a high interest rate on your mortgage doesn’t mean it has to stay that way. Rates are likely to decrease again over time, so after a few years, you will probably be able to refinance at a lower rate. 

3. You’ll have less competition

Another major point in favor of buying this year is that many people won’t be buying. The high interest rates are scaring some people, and that’s good for those who have the fortitude to buy. You’ll have less competition for prime homes, and may even end up in a better negotiating position because of it. Homeowners who are highly motivated to sell but unable to find buyers due to higher interest rates may also be more flexible about pricing.

4. If you need a house, it’s not worth waiting

Some people buy property as an investment, but others simply need a new home. If that describes you, the interest rates aren’t nearly high enough to make buying prohibitive. Buy the house you need now and look for better financing options down the line.

Need help finding a house you can afford? We can help! Just contact us for a free consultation.

MY BIO

Randy has enjoyed over 32 wonderful years in the Real Estate industry making dreams come true for homeowners.

Superior customer service is #1 to Randy and he provides this to all of his clients using knowledge, professionalism, integrity and persistence.

Randy is a successful and experienced real estate agent who expertly represents both buyers and sellers. Scores of Charlotte area residents have trusted Randy in the process of listing their homes to sell.

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