Buyers: Battle Congested Utah Housing Market Like This

Buyers: Battle Utah’s Congested Housing Market Like This

03-18-2021 | Buying | 5 Min Read

If you’ve been following our Utah Housing Market Reports of late, you’ll already know that the current real estate climate across both Salt Lake City and Park City has been active, to say the least.

If you’ve been trying to buy a home over the past few months, you’ll know exactly what we’re talking about. In today’s market, it can feel like every home you look at already has multiple offers, and after a few failed attempts at getting your offer accepted, it’s easy to get discouraged.

You’re not an all-cash buyer or an investor with deep pockets. You’re a regular qualified buyer who can buy the home once you sell your current one, which you’re prepared to do — but why won’t sellers accept your offers?

Although this hyper-active real estate market has left us with feelings of uncertainty and frustration almost as much as anything else, there are still ways to successfully navigate our Utah real estate landscape amidst all the hysteria. So if you want to move but don’t know how to approach the chaos, this post is for you.

The Situation

Utah’s current real estate climate is experiencing more rapid changes than ever before. Although house prices have never been higher, there is a shortage of homes available for sale. And because mortgage rates are so very low (magnifying buyers’ purchase power), the competition for houses is extreme.

This has left a huge portion of the Utah housing market with their hands seemingly tied — those who are in desperate need to move but are unsure whether they will be able to buy once they’ve sold. Additionally, this same demographic is unable to buy before selling because their offers don’t match the stopping-power of other higher-cash bids.

This frustrating situation of buyers being seemingly stuck in the mud, unable to take advantage of the equity in their current homes and enticing low-interest rates is what we are calling “The Contingent Buyers’ Dilemma.”

Whatever reason they might have to move — whether it’s to upgrade, upsize, or downsize — many Utah residents face a huge reluctance to take action in the market because of very real fears of not being able to find their replacement home.

If you are like many Utah residents and are anxious to move, now is still the time to do it. Buying and selling still can be done, it just takes a little more guidance and it follows a different process.

Feel Like Your Offers Are Being Ignored?

When we say the buying market is competitive, we mean it. These days, it isn’t unusual to see 20, 30, even 60 offers go in on a single home. From a buyer’s perspective, this is disheartening, to say the least — however, from a Realtor’s® perspective, we know that not all of these offers are equal.

When we help sellers vet through such a high volume of offers, there are a few standout factors that have a major influence on their decision. And today, the most important factor is speed. Although contingent “sell before you buy” offers were totally acceptable last year, buying works differently this year.

What does that mean? For one, cash is king — offers that are conditioned upon the sale of a home or offers with lower down payments are almost instantly beaten out by bids that promise more cash upfront. As the market is red hot and moving fast, cash offers close much faster than contingent offers, which open up more opportunities for delays.

Additionally, cash also beats out regular, non-contingent loans almost every time for the same reason — fewer delays, less work required. Everyone, including the banks, is moving fast in this market.

The Selling Dilemma

Although housing prices have continued to reach record highs across both the Salt Lake City and Park City real estate markets, there is still a dilemma many of those who want or need to sell their homes face.

Yes, now is still the best time to sell your Utah home — you are almost guaranteed to receive more money for your SLC or PC home than you ever dreamed of when you initially bought it. However, how can you compete as a strong and prepared buyer on your next purchase when you haven’t sold your current home?

2021 has forced us to re-think how we approach the selling market in Utah. From bidding to negotiations to timing, the entire selling process has changed dramatically. With the market moving at a much faster pace due to low inventory and high demand, those who fall under the “sell-to-buy” category must have their ducks in a row and be ready for two quick transactions.

Before you put an offer in on a new home, your current home has to be fully prepared for sale. We’re talking landscaping, paint jobs, home improvement projects, staging, professional photography — the works. Everything needs to be all prepped and ready to go so the minute your offer on a new home is accepted, you can list your home literally the very next day.

The Solution

If you have found yourself struggling with the Contingent Buyers’ Dilemma, you must know that there are alternative options out there for you; there are ways to make moves in the current market that will not leave you homeless or vulnerable.

Between selling strategies that will earn you immediate cash-in-hand, lease agreements with eager buyers of your current home, interim pre-sale loans — there are lots of tactics that can be utilized to protect you and your best interests, you just need to know where to find them. The most important thing is to not get discouraged.

As qualified, seasoned real estate professionals, we’ve seen it all and know there’s a way to circumnavigate this scenario. At Julia Splan + Associates, we have the utmost confidence we have a solution that will work for you — all it takes is a little trust and effort.

If you’ve found yourself intertwined in The Contingent Buyers’ Dilemma, we are here to help you. Although it may seem complicated, achieving your real estate goals in this market is still possible. To learn more about how to navigate the market of today and to get our professional guidance ahead of your next move, contact us here.

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