Garrington Property Finders: How to buy well in a tough market

A red brick house situated behind a lake and trees

There are ways buyers can boost their chances in the current market - Credit: Garrington Property Finders

Jonathan Hopper from Garrington Property Finders describes some of the difficulties homebuyers are experiencing and how buyers can improve their chances in this challenging market

Ever since the first signs of spring emerged and release from lockdown became a reality, an already busy housing market has further accelerated. At Garrington we hear daily stories of buyers’ frustrations, struggling to find what they are looking for, missing out to other purchasers, and some feeling fearful of the repercussions of the ambitious prices being demanded by sellers – and often being paid. Despite this, the cards are not all stacked in the seller’s favour. It’s good to remember that while achieving the highest price may be a priority for most sellers, other factors do come into play and these can be explored by buyers to increase their chances of buying well. We are often asked if it is a sellers’ or buyers’ market and, at the moment, it is largely the former. So, how do you buy well in these turbulent times?

Here are a few top tips if you are struggling to buy:

Become an attractive buyer

Extreme competition in the market and a continuing shortage of stock means quality properties launched onto the market receive considerable attention. As such, some selling agents have moved into a gatekeeper role, restricting requests to view a property based on their perception of the ‘quality’ of the buyer. There are no hard and fast rules, but if your current home is not under offer, or even on the market, you likely won’t be seriously considered. A buyer with nothing to sell is the most attractive, so if you are willing to adopt a longer-term strategy, moving into rented may well be worth the additional upheaval. Offering flexibility on dates can be viewed favourably and cash buyers will often trump those who need financing, but ultimately it will likely be a combination of factors that garners success, so aiming to fulfil as many as possible will make you a more attractive buyer.

Do your homework

Selling agents’ property details have largely improved in quality and include far more detail and it is important for buyers to study these before arranging a viewing. However, the smart buyer also researches the information that isn’t usually included in the agent’s particulars. Good broadband connectivity, mobile reception and an educated assessment of the asking price in the context of other similar recently sold properties are all essential factors to consider before viewing a property. It may be worth doing a ‘drive by’ if you’re local or using online street-view and satellite maps to assess the immediate area and the outlook of the property, if online be sure to check the date stamp. Selling agents are busy and appreciate buyers who have done their homework. Of course, having viewed a property you may decide that you simply don’t like it, but discounting it because, for example, there aren’t enough bedrooms, is frustrating as that information was available beforehand. Perceived time wasters may not get a look-in when the next property is launched.

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Don’t get carried away by the competition

Doing your homework, putting yourself in the best position, and knowing what you are willing to spend, will help you to resist the pressure from other buyers and any inflated asking prices. As a long-term investment or for a particularly special property, you may decide to pay a premium price, but it will be an informed choice, made with your eyes wide open.

Get help

If this all sounds rather intimidating, a professional property finder can help you cut through all the noise and help you find suitable properties, assess their relative worth, carry out due diligence, negotiate the deal, and guide it through to exchange and completion. In the current market it pays to have an expert on your side.

Garrington’s consultants help buyers find and purchase properties that meet their lifestyle requirements. Their local expertise and in-depth knowledge of the property market helps homebuyers to consider a wider choice of properties and purchase more effectively.

If you are considering your moving options in 2021 and would like further information on how Garrington can save you time and money making the right decision, contact

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