Palm Trees Los Angeles

Using Creative Tactics to your Advantage While Selling in a Down Market

The real estate crash of 2008 appears poised to make the downtown of the last couple of years look like nothing at all. While the market crash is certainly disturbing, real estate market crashes are really not anything new. The real estate crash of the late 1980s certainly caused plenty of concern. During that time; however, many investors learned to use creative marketing strategies in order to survive the crash. Whether you currently have a property in a market where sales have slowed down or you need to move your property off the market quickly, there are strategies you can employ in order to avoid becoming a victim of current market conditions.

During the market crash of the 1980s many sellers found it helpful to offer to pay some or even all of the closing costs for the buyer. In many situations this can be a highly successful tactic; however, it does not work in all situations. In some cases, the lender may place limits on the concessions the seller is allowed to make. This is often the case if the buyer is purchasing the property using a Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac loan.

These loans are often attractive to many buyers because they are able to make a lower down payment. In return; however, sellers are frequently limited to concessions of 3% of the total amount of the sales price if the buyer is making a down payment of 10% or less.

In this case, you may need to come up with an even more creative strategy in order to sell your property. One option that many used during the market crash of the 1980s was to raise the price of their property. At first glance, this strategy may certainly seem as though it would be counter-productive. In reality; however, it is a very creative way for you to provide assistance to the buyer with their closing costs.

Here is how this strategy works. Basically, you agree on a price with the buyer and then raise the price by a certain percentage. That money is then given back to the buyer during the closing. On a $150,000 home with a 3% price increase that would amount to $4,500. This money would go directly to the buyer and help them in paying their closing costs. In return, the buyer would obtain a loan for $154,500 and essentially be able to cover their closing costs using their mortgage.

For this tactic to work the home must be appraised for the higher price in order for the buyers to be able to obtain the mortgage loan. Of course, the buyer must also be willing to pay the higher asking price and understand that their monthly mortgage payment will also be slightly higher as a result.

Many sellers are reluctant to make any concessions at all, preferring to try to obtain as much money as they can from the asking price for their property. In a down market; however, it is important to keep in mind that basically every month the property sits on the market is costing money. Over a period of several months this could ultimately amount to far more money out of your pocket than you would give up by making concessions early on in order to sell your property as quickly as possible.

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