Buying and Selling a HomeAs we begin the last month of 1st Quarter, the housing reports have continued to boast favorable real estate conditions throughout the nation. In the Denver metropolitan area, the conditions appear to be gaining more rapidly than most of the U.S. 

1st Quarter news reports have indicated that the Denver Market ended up over 8% in 2012 vs. earlier reporting that estimated between 6-7%. Mortgage interest rates continue to hover around the 3.5% level, with another small decline this past week after a few weeks of slight increases.  Inventory remains at the lowest levels in the last 20+ years making it a great market for Sellers who are considering selling their home.  Not to sound like a broken record, but all of these points are accurate.

So, if 2013 IS the year to finally buy a home for many buyers, what can buyers do to strategically place themselves at the top for consideration of their offer?  The Wall Street Journal recently published an article that offers some good points about how to strategically place themselves at the top of the list for the Seller considering multiple offers.

1. Stay calm.  Don't spend more than you can really afford.  Buyer's can get gaught up in the hype and that can mean spending too much.

2. Make your best offer.  Be realistic.  When bidding on a home with multiple offers, you need your offer to stand out.

3. Check credit.  Before setting foot in an open house or lender's office, check your credit reports.  You can get one free annually.

4. Account for assets.  In competitive markets, buyers need a lender's pre-approval in hand before looking at homes.  A gift of funds or wire transfer must be well documented and can affect the buyer's pre-approval.

5. Bring a big down payment.  If possible, bringing more than 20% to the closing table will help your offer remain competitive.

6. Be nice.  If you are competing for a house with other buyers, stand out by making life a little easier for the seller  -such as being flexible closing date.

7. Find a good agent. An experienced real estate agent may alert you to homes before they come on the market.