How I Got My House at a Good Price in a Seller's Market – The Motley Fool

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by Christy Bieber | Published on May 11, 2022
Image source: Getty Images
There was one simple move I made that helped me get a reasonable deal.
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Last year, I purchased a new home. I made this purchase during a very inopportune time, as it was a seller’s market and many houses were selling for above asking price after bidding wars. 
Fortunately, I did not have to pay more for my property than I wanted to, and I was able to get the house at a fair price even though property values were surging. Here’s why.
I was able to get my house at a good price for a simple reason. The current owners of the property needed to sell quickly, and I was able to close on the home on their schedule.
See, the previous owners did not carefully check the deed restrictions before moving into the neighborhood. It turned out that they wanted to do a number of things that were not allowed, including parking a boat and a motor home in their driveway and having more than two large dogs.
Since they were not in compliance with HOA rules, they were getting hit with fines and fees regularly. They were understandably not very happy and wanted to get out of the home ASAP. And we were able to make that happen, closing within just two weeks of the time they accepted our offer.
Since we did not have to get a mortgage and were flexible about when we moved in, as we had another house we continued to live in part-time, our offer was very attractive to them even though they received higher offers. They just wanted to be done with the house, and they were happy to find buyers who could help them get out right away. 

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For many people who have a tight timeline for when they can move, a buyer’s ability to be flexible about closing can make a huge difference. This could be the case both for people who need to sell quickly, as well as for those who want to stay in their house for a longer period of time after finding a buyer.
Of course, not everyone can offer this type of deal to a seller. If you have to get a mortgage, you’ll need to wait for the lender to be ready to close. And if you don’t have much flexibility about when you leave your current home, this could be a challenge. But there are ways to work around this, such as getting pre-approved with a mortgage lender known for quick closing or being willing to stay temporarily with family for a little while before moving into a new home.
If you can’t close on the seller’s schedule, you may also be able to find other ways to distinguish yourself from other offers, such as being willing to pay cash, or being willing to do an information-only inspection and not ask for money off unless certain major problems are discovered. 
The important thing is, if you want to get an affordable home when the market isn’t in your favor, you’ll want to be creative in looking for other ways to make your offer more attractive. Doing so could pay off big time in the end.

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Christy Bieber is a personal finance and legal writer with more than a decade of experience. Her work has been featured on major outlets including MSN Money, CNBC, and USA Today.
We’re firm believers in the Golden Rule, which is why editorial opinions are ours alone and have not been previously reviewed, approved, or endorsed by included advertisers. The Ascent does not cover all offers on the market. Editorial content from The Ascent is separate from The Motley Fool editorial content and is created by a different analyst team.
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