Hans Brings

How To Compete with All-Cash Offers When Buying a House

bidding on a home


A frustrating thing to encounter when getting ready to put an offer on a home is finding out that you are up against someone that has made an all-cash offer. All-cash offers often get chosen because it makes the process much faster and easier for the seller. However, don’t give up hope just yet. By hiring an experienced Waltham Real Estate Agent you’ll be able to have a chance at winning against the cash buyers! Your Waltham Realtor will walk you through some important steps that we’ve listed below that will give you a leg up on your offer. 


Get a head start on the mortgage

Waltham Realtors recommend reaching out to your mortgage lender to see if they can speed up the process a little bit. Find out what information they need from you and get it to them as soon as possible. Some mortgage companies are offering pre-commitment documents which help speed up the process. If the sellers are looking for a quick sale it’s important to be completely ready and prepared with your mortgage documents when you go to put in an offer. 


Pre-order your appraisal

It might be harder to pre-order your appraisal with larger banks, however, with smaller banks, mortgage brokers, and direct lenders you can get your appraisal put together in advance. Your Waltham Realtor will help you include this information in your offer so that the seller knows that your appraisal has already been ordered. 


Up your offer

Cash buyers often get a discount because they are offering cash. If you are able to, Waltham Real Estate Agents will recommend upping your offer on the home. To increase your chances, offering a little more on the home will help you out. If the difference between offers is decent enough, the seller will be intrigued and might not resort to automatically accepting the cash offer. 


Introduce yourself to the seller

If you believe this is your dream home, Waltham Realtors suggest writing a letter to the sellers to introduce yourself. This will help the seller get to know you better. Since I’m sure their home is special to them, they’ll want to sell it to someone who feels the same way about it. By telling them a little bit about yourself and why you love their home so much it might push them towards accepting your offer over the all-cash offer. 


Give the sellers what they want

Accommodating the seller’s needs is key!  It’s possible that they still need time to find a new home for themselves or they need to rent the home from you for an extra month or so. If either of these is the case and you’re able to make the deal and let them stay for a little longer, say yes! If it means getting your dream home, what’s waiting an extra month or so?


Contact a Waltham Real Estate Agent

Waltham Realtors are always here to give you the best advice and insight as you navigate the home buying process. You Waltham Real Estate Agent won’t let you down! Reach out today by giving Hans Brings a call at 617-968-0022.


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    What's The Difference Between a Pending Sale & a Contingent Sale?


    While searching for Waltham Real Estate online you might often come across a listing that states it’s “contingent” or “pending.” If you’re not familiar with what these terms mean you’re probably confused as to what the difference between them is and whether the home is actually available or not. A Waltham Realtor is here to give you all the insight! 


    What Does Contingent Mean in Real Estate?

    When you see that a home is contingent it means that the seller has accepted an offer on the home, however, before the home is completely off the market some specific requirements need to be met. Once certain requirements are met the status of the property will switch from an active listing to a pending status until the home is finally marked as sold. 


    What Does Pending Mean in Real Estate?

    When you notice on a listing that the home is pending, Waltham Real Estate Agents suggest moving on from that home. A pending sale means that the offer has been accepted, the contingencies are all set, and the buyer and the seller are moving forward with the sale. A pending offer is the time period between the contingencies being met and the close of the sale.


    Common Contingencies in Real Estate

    As mentioned above, when a Waltham home is contingent it means there are still some requirements that need to be met before the sale can continue. Examples of contingencies include:


    Home Inspection 

    Buyers may put a home inspection contingency on an offer to make sure the home is in satisfactory condition prior to purchasing.  Home inspections many issues such as bug infestations, foundation issues, mechanical issues, or mold issues. 


    Appraisal Contingencies

    Appraisal contingencies are also often required by lenders to make sure the house is at least worth the price of the accepted offer. The appraisal will look into amenities, location, home add-ons, or other higher-value features that might add or detract from the home's value. If the appraiser finds issues that make the home worth less than the offer that was accepted there could be issues with the sale. 


    Financing Contingencies

    If you’re taking out a loan to purchase a home, Waltham Realtors will often suggest a financing contingency before the sale is final. A financing contingency allows you to back out of a sale if for some reason the loan does not end up being granted. 

    Common Pending Types in Real Estate

    There are a few kinds of pending sales in real estate, the common ones include: 


    Pending - Short Sale 

    A pending short sale means the home is awaiting approval from the bank. The bank has to approve all aspects of the sale which Waltham Realtors say could greatly slow down the closing process of the sale. Within short sales, deals often fall through because the banks take so long and the buyer ends up finding another home with a quicker closing process. 


    Pending - Taking Backups 

    When the status of a listing says “taking backups” this means the seller believes the deal is likely to fall through. Waltham Real Estate Agents say sellers may notice some financial problems or other issues and want to make sure they have some backup offers just in case. However, the offer has to fall through on its own, the seller cannot drop the offer if they happen to get a higher one. 


    Can You Make an Offer on an Active Contingent Listing?

    Until a home is officially sold you can always make an offer. However, Waltham Real Estate Agents say the best time to make an offer on a home is when there are no pending sales or contingencies in the way. The next best time to make an offer is when the pending status says “taking backups.” 


    Contact A Waltham Real Estate Agent

    If you’re looking for a reliable Waltham Realtor to assist you throughout the home buying or selling process, contact Hans Brings today! Hans will assist you every step of the way helping you get your dream home or the best possible offer on your current home. 617-968-0022


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      Buying Waltham Real Estate in 2021 - What To Expect

      Waltham Real Estate

      The process of buying a home is similar to playing a sport. You must get in shape and understand the rules before hitting the field, and then be able to overcome challenges to secure your win. In 2021, you’ll win in your Waltham Real Estate game by understanding how to stack up against lender qualifications, how to compete with other buyers, and how to navigate through a socially distanced home buying process. This article will give you some insight into what it looks like to buy a Waltham home in 2021 and how to prepare yourself for the process. 


      It’s Currently a Seller’s Market

      Lately, there have been a ton more buyers than sellers in the Waltham Real Estate market. Therefore, when you find a home you really love chances are you won’t be the only one submitting an offer. If you’re currently looking for a new home you’ll need to make sure you’re flexible and going in with an open mind. For example, in today’s market, it’ll be tough to win over a seller if you make your offer contingent on the sale of your current home. To figure out how to navigate the local market and make a strong offer on a home, talk to your Waltham Real Estate Agent


      Home Prices Expected to Increase

      Since it’s currently a seller’s market, Waltham Realtors are saying that they expect home prices to continually increase. Prices on homes also can vary by season, so if you’re on a tight budget it’s important to buy within certain months to save you money. Waltham homes are normally more expensive in the warm summer months and less expensive in the winter months. 


      Mortgage Rates Are Expected to Stay Low

      A positive fact about the current Real Estate market is that mortgage rates are expected to stay low in 2021. Even though rates are currently lower, Waltham Real Estate Agents still suggest shopping around and doing your research when looking for a mortgage lender. Contact multiple lenders and compare their offers so that you can get the best deal possible. 


      Digital Tools Are Changing the Home Buying/Selling Process

      New digital ways to sell and buy homes are taking over the real estate market. Virtual home tours, online closings, smaller open houses, and Zoom meetings have allowed people to continue to sell and buy homes during this pandemic. While the social-distancing rules have started to lift, online and digital tools will continue being used even after the pandemic is over. 

      Credit Requirements Are Still Tight

      The credit score you need in order to buy a home will depend on your mortgage type and the lender. If you have a low credit score it will be tougher to qualify for a loan. Waltham Real Estate Agents say that some lenders might loosen credit requirements as the economy improves, but it might still be tough to find a lender if you have low credit. If you’re looking to boost your credit score, here are a few tips


      Contact a Waltham Realtor

      With today’s crazy real estate market it’s crucial that you have a knowledgeable and experienced Waltham Realtor to help you along with the buying or selling process. Your Waltham Real Estate Agent will work hard to help you get your dream home or sell your current Waltham home. Contact Waltham Realtor, Hans Brings, today at 617-968-0022!


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        What Is A Comparative Market Analysis?

        If you’re thinking about selling your home, you’re probably also thinking about how much you can sell it for. You might try some online home value estimators, however, most of those tools won’t give you very accurate results. They might be great starting points but they won’t be able to factor in specific details about your home. The best way to determine how much your Waltham Real Estate is worth is by conducting a Comparative Market Analysis or CMA. To do this you should work with an experienced Waltham Realtor who understands the local market entirely. 


        What is a Comparative Market Analysis?

        A Comparative Market Analysis or CMA is the method of calculating the value of a home based on recent sales of similar homes in the same area. Waltham Realtors use a CMA to help accurately determine what your property is worth. They will assess all of the features of your home and compare them to similar properties in the area to see exactly how much your home should be listed for. 


        What Should a CMA Include? 

        When conducting a CMA with your Waltham Real Estate Agent, it will likely include several comparable sold properties, sale pending homes, and currently listed homes.  These properties will have similar features to your home and are located in the same or similar area to your home. The analysis will include the price these properties sold for and a proposed price for your home’s listing.  


        Is a CMA Accurate?

        As mentioned above, a Comparative Market Analysis is a fantastic way to accurately determine your home’s market value. However, it is never guaranteed that your home will sell at the exact price provided in the CMA. The best way to get the most accurate CMA is to work with an experienced Waltham Real Estate Agent.


        Can You Get a Comparative Market Analysis for Free?

        Most agents, including Waltham Realtor Hans Brings, will provide you with a CMA for free. This is a great way to get to know your local Waltham Real Estate Agent and see exactly how they can help you in your home selling process. 


        Contact a Waltham Realtor

        To get your free Comparative Market Analysis contact Waltham Realtor, Hans Brings, by filling out a form or giving him a call at 617-968-0022. Being in the industry for over 31 years has given Hans the experience and knowledge to help all home sellers determine their selling price as well as end up selling for the best amount. 


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          Features That Can Make or Break the Value of Your Home



          Some homeowners believe that the value of their home will automatically increase if they have a unique feature. They assume that they can ask for more money for their home than other homes in the area just because they have some of these features. However, a Waltham Real Estate Agent is here to tell you that’s not always the case. While yes, sometimes these features can increase the value of your home but sometimes they might decrease the value of your home. Here’s some insight on what kind of features we’re referring to. 


          Swimming Pools 

          Increase Value

          For beautiful luxury homes that have a big backyard, swimming pools can add value. If your pool includes extras like a hot tub, waterfall, is a unique shape, and maybe even features a slide or diving board it can definitely be valuable and allow you to increase your asking price. Waltham Realtors say that in order for a pool to add value to your home, it must be in great condition.

          Decrease Value 

          Swimming pools can also decrease the value of your home and here’s why. Swimming pools can take up a lot of backyard space and are often expensive and time-consuming to maintain. If your pool needs a lot of repairs and fixing, your home's value can be negatively affected. Unless the buyer is willing to put in all the work, they are likely not going to want to deal with the maintenance and cost that having a pool would come with. 


          In-Law Apartments 

          Increase Value 

          An in-law apartment that is updated and well maintained can be very attractive to buyers who are looking for just that. Waltham Realtors say that if you have a beautiful and cohesive in-law apartment you can certainly raise your asking price for people who find that a must-have home feature. 

          Decrease Value 

          Waltham Real Estate Agents also mention that in-law apartments aren’t always the most popular. Therefore, some people aren’t willing to pay more for a home when that feature is not something they need. 


          Increase Value 

          Garages and sheds that are in good condition can usually add value to a home, especially if they are attached to the house. A lot of people find value in garages and sheds because they add extra storage space to a home while also protecting cars from harsh weather conditions. 

          Decrease Value 

          However, Waltham Realtors mention that functionality and condition are two big factors when it comes to determining whether the garage or shed could take away value from the home. If it is too big for the yard, looks out of place, or is in need of great repair, buyers might be turned off and not want to deal with them. 


          Contact A Waltham Realtor

          If you’re looking to sell your home in Waltham, MA, and think that you have some features that could add value to your home, consult with a Waltham Real Estate Agent! We will help you determine the perfect asking price for your home based on the features your home offers. Give Waltham Realtor, Hans Brings, a call today at 617-968-0022 or fill out a contact form


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            How To Determine What To Offer On a Home

            making offer on home


            Once you finally find the home you want, the process isn’t over quite yet. Next, you need to figure out how much you should offer on the house. While a Waltham Real Estate Agent can help give you insight, it’s also a good idea to do some research on your own. The most important part of your offer is the price and sometimes this can be the hardest part of the home buying process. Below are 3 questions to ask yourself (and your Waltham Realtor) to guide you in this process. 

            1. What have similar homes sold for? 

            Waltham Real Estate Agents suggest that the best place to start is to research similar homes in the area and see what they have recently sold for. Gather a list of recent, similar, and nearby home sales. When comparing these homes to the one you want to put an offer on consider the following: 

            • Location Construction type 
            • How many bedrooms and bathrooms
            • Square footage
            • Condition (new, updated, or needs to be updated)


            All of this information can help you begin to put together a range of possible prices that you should offer. Your Waltham Realtor will be able to help you access all of this information. 

            2. How long has the home been on the market?

            When figuring out your offer price, a factor you should consider is how long the home has been on the market. Waltham Real Estate Agents say the length of time a home has been on the market sometimes affects how much it's worth and will help give you insight on what to offer.

            The longer a house has been on the market, the lower your offer can be. On the contrary, if a home has just been put on the market your offer price should usually be a little higher. If you offer too little on a newly listed home you are going to risk the seller turning down your offer for another one. However, if a home has been on the market for a while the seller will likely be more open for a lower price or some negotiation.

            Keep in mind that some sellers are not in a rush, even if their home has been on the market for some time. Therefore, offering a price way below the asking price may not work for all homes. If you are interested in offering a price below the asking price, make sure to consult with your Waltham Real Estate Agent first to see how far under the price you should go.

            3. What is the condition of the home?

            This is likely obvious, but the condition of the home is an important factor in how much you should offer. A home that does not need much fixing will typically get higher offers than a home that needs work. Homes that need some work can be great opportunities to save money, however, make sure to consider how much work it needs and how much work you’re willing to put into it. Pay attention to these factors when evaluating a home:

            • A damaged roof
            • Cracks in the foundation
            • Rusted plumbing fixtures
            • Water damage on floors or walls
            • Uneven floors 

            Contact A Waltham Realtor


            At the end of the day, the ultimate goal is to come up with an offer that will win over the seller. Figuring out the right price to offer can take some time but it doesn’t need to be too difficult. With the help of a Waltham Real Estate Agent you’ll be able to figure out the perfect price to offer that will give you the best chance at getting your dream home. Contact Waltham Realtor, Hans Brings, today to get started in your home buying process! 617-968-0022


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              4 Mortgage Myths You Often Hear


              When it comes to purchasing a new home and getting a mortgage it could be a little bit of a stressful process. It’s especially stressful if you’re a first-time homebuyer. However, there is a lot of false information out there about the process of obtaining a mortgage. Within this article, a Waltham Realtor explains 4 of the most common myths around mortgage and why they are indeed not true! 


              Myth #1: “Buying a home is no longer affordable.”

              With inventory low and demand high, many homes on the market are selling fast. Not only are they selling quickly but they are selling for a lot over the listing price. This is why many people believe that it’s becoming too expensive to afford a home. However, a Waltham Real Estate Agent is here to let you know it’s very possible to afford to buy a home right now. With today’s low interest rates people have more buying power because rates have come down faster than home prices have gone up. With a lower interest rate, your monthly payment will be lower. This allows buyers to have a larger home price budget to work with. 


              Myth #2: “I can’t buy a house if I still have student loans to pay.”

              Lender’s definitely take debt into consideration before approving a mortgage, however, it’s unlikely that everyone who buys a home is 100% debt-free. So while you may have student loans, car payments, etc. what matters most is your debt-to-income ratio. A Waltham Realtor can assist you with figuring out your debt-to-income ratio and then take it from there! 


              Myth #3: “I have to put 20% down to buy a home.”

              This statement is a myth Waltham Real Estate Agents hear all the time! But did you know that about 80% of first time home buyers make down payments that are less than 20%? If you aren’t able to put 20% down, there are a lot of mortgage products that will allow smaller down payments. 


              Myth #4: “I should go with the lender who has the lowest rate.”

              It might sound ideal to find the lender with the lowest rate, however, there are many other factors to consider when searching for a mortgage lender. Waltham Realtors also suggest finding a lender that has experience, is reliable, can get things done quickly, and can help educate you on the whole process. When it comes to making an investment this big, it’s important to go with a lender you trust and that has been successful in the past. 


              Contact a Waltham Real Estate Agent 

              If you’re looking for someone to assist you during every step of the home buying process, choose an experienced Waltham Realtor! We will help you communicate with lenders and get the best loan possible. Even if you think buying a home is too expensive, we’re here to help make it happen on your budget. Contact us today by giving us a call at 617-968-0022 or fill out a contact form and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible.


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                Should I Move to Waltham, MA?

                Waltham Real Estate


                Have you been toying with the idea of moving to Waltham, MA? If so, now is the time because the Waltham Real Estate Market is hot! Waltham, MA is a great place to live as its beautiful suburban feel and historical background has kept it a popular place to both reside and work for many years. 

                Waltham, MA is very diverse. Whether you’re looking for an apartment, single family home, duplex, etc. you’ll be able to find it in Waltham. Waltham is also a great place to start a business as it offers a wide range of retail, office, and industrial spaces. In this article a Waltham Real Estate Agent guides you through all the details of living in Waltham so that you can get confident and ready for your move to this awesome city! 


                Waltham, MA Real Estate - Population & Demographics

                Waltham, MA is a fairly big city with a population of almost 63,000. It is located in Middlesex County. Waltham Realtors always make sure to let clients the many attributes of living in Waltham. 

                Living in Waltham you can expect very friendly people/neighbors and many families. The median age of residents is about 35 years old. This makes it a popular area for people to buy a home, settle down, and start a family. 


                Waltham, MA Real Estate - Neighborhoods

                Waltham Real Estate Agents of course always know the best areas and neighborhoods for our clients. Some of the most popular neighborhoods in Waltham are Warrendale, Highlands, Glenmeadow, Lakeview, South Side, and Cedarwood just to name a few.


                Things to do in Waltham

                As mentioned above, Waltham has a rich historical background. Because of this there are some great museums in the area such as The Charles River Museum of Industry and Innovation and the Golden Ball Tavern Museum. Waltham is also filled with many parks and fields for fun family activities and picnics. 

                For a fun night out in Waltham, Waltham Realtors suggest a delicious meal at any of the amazing restaurants downtown. Downtown Waltham comes to life at night as it is filled with vibrant music scenes and some of the most delicious food. 


                Contact a Waltham Real Estate Agent Today

                Have we made you more confident to pursue a move to Waltham, MA? It’s a great time to buy one of the Waltham, MA homes for sale! Get yourself a knowledgeable and experienced Real Estate Agent like Hans Brings and start the process today. If you have more questions about Waltham and its Real Estate Market don’t hesitate to reach out! Fill out a contact form or call 617-968-0022.


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                  4 Things That May Be Impacting Your Credit

                  When it comes to buying a home, having a good credit score is extremely important. Figuring out your credit score can be confusing if you’re not sure what causes your score to grow or drop over time. A Waltham Realtor put together a handful of reasons why your credit score might not be where you want it to be. Read through these reasons so that you can work to improve your score and be able to purchase the Waltham home you’ve always wanted! 

                  1. Late or Missed Payments

                  Your payment history has about a 40% impact on your score, which is huge! This means if you’re late or miss any payments, it’s going to greatly affect your credit score and not in a positive way. Waltham Real Estate Agents encourage you to make your payments on time so that you can build your score and be able to successfully receive a mortgage loan from the bank. 

                  2. Poor Debt to Income Ratio

                  Your debt-to-income ratio is the total amount of debt you have compared to your annual income. So in this case, your credit score will drop if the debt you owe is greater than your income. A Waltham Realtor's best advice for this issue is to focus on paying down your debt before acquiring new debt so that you can improve your debt-to-income ratio.

                  3. Too Many Credit Inquiries

                  Every time you apply for or open a new credit card the creditor pulls your score. When they do this, it actually lowers your score. If it’s only a couple inquiries it won’t lower your score too much, however, if there are too many inquiries you score will be negatively impacted. Waltham Real Estate Agents say to avoid credit inquiries for a period of time and be particular about how often your credit is being pulled in the future. 

                  4. Closing Credit Cards

                  Around 20% of your credit score is determined by the length of your credit accounts. If you close credit cards that you’ve had for a while, your score will drop. Keep your accounts open even if you’re not using them too often. Even just using them periodically will help your score. Waltham Realtors say to focus on keeping your credit usage below 30% and keeping your accounts active rather than paying the credit card off completely and then closing the account. 

                  Contact A Waltham Realtor

                  To learn more about your credit score and how it can impact your ability to purchase your Waltham home, contact a Waltham Real Estate Agent today! Waltham Realtor’s have years of experience working with clients who have a wide range of credit scores. We’ll assist you in every way possible so that you can purchase the Waltham home you’ve always wanted! Give us a call today at 617-968-0022 or fill out a contact form and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible.


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                    Should I Price My Home Higher to Leave Room for Negotiations?


                    Waltham home sellers often ask, “should I price my home higher to leave room for negotiations?” While we, Waltham Realtors, understand the thought process behind this, the short answer is no! For real estate sales, pricing your home higher does not work the same way overpricing a car or piece of furniture does. Let’s dig a little deeper as to why Waltham Real Estate Agents say that overpricing your home to leave room for negotiations is not the right move. 


                    Buyer’s Agents Will Ignore Overpriced Homes

                    The first step in the home selling process is getting people to come to see your home. If your home’s price is listed too high, that’ll do just the opposite. Buyer’s agents will likely advise their buyers that your home is overpriced. This will lead to the buyers not even wanting to look at your home at all. Keep in mind that Waltham Real Estate Agents have years of experience and know the market exceptionally well, if you’re overpricing your home they will not advise buyers to give attention to your property. 

                    Overpricing Eliminates Eligible Buyers

                    When selling your Waltham home you want as many people interested in your home as possible. If you list your home at a higher price, you might be eliminating many people who are eligible to buy your home at its correct price. A buyer might not qualify for that higher price or it may be out of their ideal budget. In this case, you once again won’t get people to even look at your home.

                    Waltham Realtors state that one thing you might do is succeed in getting buyers into your home who are looking in that price range. However, the problem is that they will be looking for more since the home is priced so high. They will be comparing your home to other homes in that price range and they will likely notice that your home does not compare to the others.

                    Overpricing Lengthens Time on the Market

                    Waltham Real Estate Agents say that overpricing your home can lead to it staying on the market longer because you’ll have trouble selling it. And did you know that the longer your home stays on the market the less money you’ll eventually get for it? If the average selling time is 60 days and your home has been on the market for 120 days, the buyers and buyer’s agents will think there is something wrong with the home. They will wonder what is wrong with the home and also believe that the seller must be desperate. If they believe you are desperate to sell (which you might be) they will start lowballing offers and you will get even less than your home is worth.


                    Contact a Waltham Real Estate Agent

                    If you’re looking for assistance in selling your Waltham real estate, contact a Waltham Realtor today! We have the knowledge and experience to help you properly price your home so that you can get as many people as possible interested in your property. This doesn’t mean we will underprice your home, we’ll make sure you get exactly what your home is worth if not more (as long as we initially list it correctly!) Contact Hans Brings today for all your Waltham real estate needs. Call 617-968-0022 or fill out a contact form.


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