No buyer wants to face a “bidding war” on the house they love. The thought of being outbid is daunting. Use these strategies to stack the odds in your favour, even if you don’t have the highest price or an all-cash offer.

1)Go subject-free: If you have the means make an unconditional, subject-free offer. You don’t have to have the purchase price all in “cash”, but be ready. It does take some planning to be prepared to make an offer without subjects.
2)Involve your mortgage lender early: Make sure your pre-approval is totally in order and, if at all possible, get a firm approval for the property you are making an offer on. Your offer will be more appealing to the seller if you can remove the financing contingencies.
3)Get a pre-offer inspection: Although the home inspection is in place for the buyer’s peace of mind and protection, the home sellers will feel more confident knowing the buyers have done their due diligence.
4)Accommodate the seller’s dates: For some sellers having a week between completion and possession is ideal if they are lining up a transaction chain or have a firm date which they need to move by. Dates could very well make or break the transaction.
5)Be the first offer in: Conventional wisdom says “Wait until the last minute. Let all the other competition go first.” But if you are the first offer you can guarantee yours will get more careful attention and be more memorable.
6)Don’t bank on a counter offer: Some buyers don’t go into the bid with their highest and best, assuming there will be a second round and an active bidding session. But that’s not always the case. The seller is not obligated to counter an offer, give a second chance, or allow bidding.
7)Include a copy of your bank draft: Go get your deposit draft ready to show you are a serious, ready, willing, and able purchaser and attach a copy of your deposit draft with your offer.
8)Offer a deposit upon acceptance: Even if you can’t go in completely subject-free with an “all cash offer” put your bank draft in trust so the sellers know how serious you are. If the transaction does not go through you would get your deposit back.
9)Write a personal letter: Chances are the sellers love their home just as much as you do. Write a personal note to include with your offer to show the sellers how important it is to you.
10)Be there to present in person: If the sellers will allow it, be there during the offer presentation with your agent. If there are any changes or counters, being there in person would allow you to react faster and make it more convenient for the sellers to accept your offer.
11)Attach a copy of the signed disclosure: most sellers will provide a seller’s disclosure statement when they list their home for sale. Review the disclosure and sign it in advance to be provided to the seller with your offer.
12)Attach a copy of your pre-approval letter: If finalizing your mortgage financing is not possible before presenting an offer attach a copy of your lender’s approval to show the sellers your approval is official.

Many buyers believe that the winning bid always comes down to the highest price but there are many other factors that will influence a sellers decision and some that could even be more important than the top dollar figure. Its important to take everything into consideration when competing in a multiple offer situation and not to get carried away in the competition for the sake of itself, for both buyers and sellers.

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