Top 5 Tips to Buying {the home that everyone else wants} in this Competitive Market!

We are excited to introduce a guest blogger this week! Check out these top tips from expert Realtor, Mandy Regel, with United Real Estate.

A great economy and low mortgage rates equal a VERY competitive housing market here in South Central, PA! Houses are selling fast. In some cases, before they even hit the market. Check out these 5 tips to buying the home you want in this competitive market!

Be Qualified

If you are asking yourself, “Where exactly do I begin?”, you are not alone. Your first (and most important) step in purchasing a home is to contact your lender and get pre-approved for a mortgage. Blue Chip FCU has many options for your home buying needs! You will want to discuss three very essential topics with your lending team:

  • How much do you qualify to borrow?
  • What loan program is the best fit for you?
  • Does your monthly mortgage payment budget align with your anticipated purchase price?

Until your Real Estate Agent knows the answer to these three questions, they cannot write a strong offer for you on the home of your dreams.  Remember the competitive market we are in. You may be competing with other offers for the home! “Knowledge is power”. And power is an important component when you are submitting an offer on a home that you love!

Saving money, home loan, mortgage, a property investment for future concept : A man hand putting money coin over small residence house and money bag with nature background. A sustainable investment.

Love your Agent:

What kind of experience would your home-buying process be with a Real Estate Agent that you are not connecting well with?  The process of house-hunting is a milestone experience. Make sure your professional support team (your real estate agent and lender) is a great fit for you, and make sure you communicate with them openly if you would like to see things happen differently than they are.  This partnership with you and your real estate and lending team is a relationship, and we all know that “communication is key” in relationships.

If you are currently looking for a Realtor and partner, feel free to contact me. I would love to work with you and your family to find the home of your dreams. And remember… have fun and enjoy the process. Be sure to surround yourself with experts who will enjoy the process with you!


Just put your signature here! Cheerful young man signs competitive home offer while sitting together with his wife and man in shirt and tie

Be Offer-Ready:

This is a big one! Be mentally prepared to write an offer every time you step into a home.  If you are not ready to do that quite yet – that is okay! You may want to stick to touring open houses until you feel ready to commit.

When a seller receives a showing request, do you know what they do? They deep clean, declutter, remove pets from their home, make alternate dinner arrangements and call all of their friends and family to tell the WORLD that they have a home showing.  It’s a big deal to them and they are delighted to have you view their home as a potential buyer! It is important that, as buyers, we respect their time and space by not creating false hope for sellers when we are not ready to put an offer in on their home, even if we fall in love with it.

So, be offer-ready.  Are your finances in line?  Is your employment stable and secure?  Are you ready to put your plans aside for the evening to sign offer documents with your real estate agent on a home that you love?  And of course, you can be assured that your real estate agent and lending team are here to help you “be ready”.

Close-up of two business people shaking hands and making a competitive agreement while sitting at the working place.

Know what you want and be ready to change it!

Make a list of “must-have” features that you are looking for in a home.  It is important that you know what you are not willing to budge on before you begin your home search.  Share these items on your wish list with your Real Estate Agent and be clear with them about what your heart is set on.

If you know that a home without a garage would be detrimental to your storage needs, you should avoid homes that don’t have a garage.  However, if homes WITH a garage exceed your budget comfort-zone, it may be time to reconsider your wish list. Perhaps you can add that garage in the future! Being realistic about your expectations, and the need to be flexible in a market that says we might have to be, will make your home buying experience a much more pleasant one.  I promise!


Beautiful kitchen room with green island and farmhouse sink sets home apart in a competitive market..

Be Yourself:

In this competitive market, don’t be like everyone else when you are writing an offer on a home.  Add an unconventional touch to your offer. Write a letter to the sellers, thanking them for allowing you to view their home.  Tell them what features of the home appealed to you most and what you will enjoy as much as they did when you make your very own memories in their home.  While some of you may have an urge to write a novel, I recommend that you keep it simple. Introduce yourself and allow them to picture you as real, live, normal people instead of just a typed up name.

Present the sellers with an offer that shows them that you are more than just the negotiations on paper in front of them. Personalization can make a positive impact on your offer and is monumental in setting you apart from the others.  Take the road less traveled and don’t be afraid to stand out!

Happy young family taking selfie on the floor at home

Keeping these important tips in mind will make your home-purchasing voyage one that is smooth, pleasant, and authentic in this competitive market!

Mandy Regel, Realtor, United Real Estate ♦ Office: 484-367-7727 ♦ Direct: 717-609-9998 ♦ Email: ♦ License #RS320440