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3 Strategies For Winning a Bidding War

Updated: Mar 14, 2019



Boston is well-known for its competitive real estate market - dense population, terrible traffic from the suburbs, and an ocean to the east that creates a natural barrier for development. The Boston Globe reports that “Unrelenting demand and a tight supply have made buying options scarce and competition ruthless, driving prices into record-high territory.”


Although this trend is showing signs of slowing, Boston is still a seller’s market, and we’re expecting yet another competitive year in 2019. Bidding wars will frustrate you if you’re in the market for property, but consider these three strategies for winning a bidding war, helping you beat out the competition, and finally landing your dream home in the city!


1. Be Personable


Redfin reports that crafting a personal letter can improve a buyer’s likelihood of success by 52%. Make a point to meet the seller and talk with her at or after the open house. Once you submit your bid, ask your agent to call and follow up. Don’t be anonymous throughout the buying process, and you’ll have a leg up in the bidding war.


2. Offer Cash


This advice is splashed across the internet because it is true - offering cash is one of the best strategies for winning a bidding war. No mortgage contingencies, no financing snafus. A cash offer with proof of funds is the strongest offer you could submit - you’re providing proof that you actually have the cash in hand to purchase the property, with no need to sell other real estate in advance of closing.


Unfortunately, it’s just not possible for most buyers. In that case, you can still add financial incentives to your offer, like getting pre-approved by your lender or bidding above market price. You can also include an escalation clause that offers X amount (usually around $5,000) above the highest offer up to a capped price.


3. Wave Those Pesky Contingencies


Selling a house comes with a lot of uncertainty. The more you can remove from the process, the more the seller will be inclined to work with you. Some common contingencies that buyers ask for are:

- Financing contingency - If the buyer isn’t approved for the loan, he gets his deposit back.

- Inspection contingency - If the inspector finds new or expensive problems, the buyer can retract his offer.

- Appraisal contingency - if the value of the home isn’t within a prespecified range, the buyer can retract her offer.


Dropping these contingencies is risky, but can have a big impact on the bidding war. Redfin reports that removing the financing contingency can increase a buyer’s likelihood of success by 58%.


Win Your Bidding War with NextHome Titletown by Your Side


Being personable, bringing financial incentives to the table, and waving some, or all, of your contingencies are great strategies for winning a bidding war, but having a real estate agent by your side is important as well.


If you’re ready to buy or invest in the Greater Boston area, our expert agents at NextHome Titletown will help you navigate the competitive market with ease. Contact us at 617.657.9811 or contact@nexthometitletown.com to find your dream home today!