Buying a Home: The 3 Do’s of Putting in an Offer


So after months of researching, assessing and looking, you’ve finally found it – the home you want to buy. And now that you’ve found it, you need to strategize about how to successfully purchase it while not overpaying for it. This can be a tricky process, but if you keep these 3 essential Do’s in mind while journeying down the offer road, your path should be smoother and easier (fingers crossed):

1. Do make your initial offer as high as you can. In other words, as much as possible – do not lowball. It’s crucial that you start the negotiation in a positive way – it will influence the rest of the process. Starting off on the wrong foot will have dire consequences. I’m not suggesting that you overpay for a house or start the offer at a price with which you are uncomfortable; just remember in the back of your mind how important and significant your initial offer is. It will influence the rest of the entire negotiation, interactions and process, which as you know, can take months from start to finish….

2. Do talk about your love of the house. In other words, don’t trash the house in an attempt to justify your initial offer price. Focus on the positives instead of the negatives. Of course, you may need to mention some of the work that you’ll have to do or the drawbacks to the house to explain your price, but do this as politely, gingerly and lightly as possible. I can guarantee you that a seller won’t want to sell his house to someone who talks endlessly about the flaws and shortcomings of his home.

3. Do complete all of the necessary paperwork. In other words, don’t put in the offer with half of the documents missing. Yes, buying a home is an emotional process, but it is also a business transaction and having all of the paperwork completed, legible and organized will make the seller – and the listing agent – think that you cared enough to take the time to make the process earnest and professional. The seller will likely take your fully-documented, typed, buttoned-up offer more seriously than one that appears to be “thrown in” and that is sloppy, careless and missing necessary documents. Furthermore he may interpret your professional offer as an indicator that you want the house, whereas he’ll question the motivations of the buyer who presented a sloppy, off-the-cuff, haphazard offer.

What are your thoughts on the subject? Were there certain do’s or don’ts that you followed as you were making your initial offer on a property? Did they help or hurt you and your ultimate goal of purchasing the home? I can’t wait to hear….

And last but not least…please check out my corresponding blog – Selling a Home: The 3 Do’s of Responding to an Offer.

For more information on this or about the real estate market in Weston, Wellesley, Wayland and the surrounding towns or if you are considering selling your home, please contact me, Lisa Curlett (, 781-267-2844 or, to answer any questions or for a complimentary home appraisal.