What is a realistic bid?

Asked by Kathleen, Frederick, MD Tue Feb 3, 2009

I am thinking of buying a house in the Fairfield area. Right on the traintracks. Listed for 189. A little for that area, but not too bad. House is in excellent condition.. What would a good starting bid be? I am a first time home buyer. Can I ask for a fridge if it came with all new appliances except for a fridge?

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Bill Eckler, Agent, Venice, FL
Tue Feb 10, 2009
These are issues, that as mentioned by my colleagues, could be resolved through working with a local real estate professional.

Good luck
0 votes
Erik Immel, , Fairfield, CA
Tue Feb 10, 2009

Don't by a house near the train tracks! If its an objection to you...it will always be some other Buyers concern later on. You are buying a home not just for you but the next Buyer later on!

Erik Immel
Century 21 Distinctive
Fairfield, CA
0 votes
Herman Rod, Agent, Benicia, CA
Wed Feb 4, 2009
Hi Kathleen,

Do you already have an agent? If so, he/she should be very well qualified to answer these questions and guide you along the way. If you don't have an agent or if that agent isn't counseling you properly and is simply opening the lockbox and leaving you to figure everything else out on your own, then it might be time to consider using an agent who will guide you and advise you properly. You deserve that level of care and should expect it (by the way, if you are indeed looking for an agent, Fairfield is in my market area and I'd be happy to assist you -- feel free to contact me via my Trulia profile or my web site -- see below).

More importantly than the refrigerator should be the location. A home right on the train tracks may be more affordable for you than other nearby homes, but you should also consider the impact that such a location will have on your ability to sell that same home later on. Realize that it could take much longer and require a very aggressive pricing strategy to sell it some years from now.

Most importantly, if you buy a home with certain inherent shortcomings (i.e. location or condition) you should make sure that the price you're paying has those shortcomings factored into it. In other words, if you buy at a big discount today because of the proximity to the train tracks, then you can afford to offer a large discount five or 10 years from now when you sell. But you certainly don't want to pay a premium today and then have to discount the price substantially five years from now over something you overlooked when you purchased it.

Finally, with regard to the refrigerator, everything is negotiable. A refrigerator is personal property and is usually not included, but some sellers will include it in order to facilitate a sale even if they intended to take it with them. In other words, unless the MLS listing remarks show that it's included, if you don't ask, the seller's probably not going to volunteer it.

Good luck...and if you're still looking for an agent, please contact me. I'd be happy to assist you!

- Rod
Web Reference:  http://homesection.com
0 votes
Maria Morton, Agent, Kansas City, MO
Wed Feb 4, 2009
Kathleen, you can ask for anything but please don't buy a whole entire house just to get a fridge. Excellent condition is always good; railroad tracks not so much.

As Cindi Hagley says, the best thing to do at this point is to have your agent do a CMA for you. Make sure you sign a Buyer's Agency with the agent you choose to represent you. This obligates the realtor to act in your best interests. Many buyers today are making the mistake of using the listing agent and the listing agent represents the best interests of the seller. Your agent can help you determine the terms you want to initiate the contract with including price, appliances and closing date. Your agent can also show you homes that are similar to the one you are considering that may have attributes that this one does not. Ask your agent to show you what homes in the area, in your preferred price range, are in good condition and how they compare from one neighborhood to another in value.
0 votes
The Hagley G…, Agent, Pleasanton, CA
Wed Feb 4, 2009
Have your agent pull comparable sales in the area...that's a good starting point
Web Reference:  http://www.cindihagley.com
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David Rivas, , Sunnyvale, CA
Tue Feb 3, 2009
This really depends on how bad you want the home. A realistic bid that will at least get you a counter offer would be no more than 10% below the selling price. In this case 170,000. If you like the home you should offer 5% off the price or 180,000 and if you really want the home offer 185,000.
As far as the fridge goes, you will never know if they will put one in if you don't ask. So ask. If you need any assistance, I am very close to you and can help negotiate all of the above.
David Rivas
Century 21 El Camino
(408) 431-7202
0 votes
Jerry Flynn, Agent, Clayton, CA
Tue Feb 3, 2009

It depends if it is a REO property, or not. If it is a REO, then the banks usually sale the homes as is. I would have to see the listing, and talk to the listing agent to find out what the seller is willing to do.

If you would like my assistance, you can contact me at:

Jerry Flynn
Old West Realty Inc.
0 votes
Dallas Texas, Agent, Dallas, TN
Tue Feb 3, 2009
It sounds as though you need a buyers agent assist you with determine true value of home and submitting a sales offer benefit for all parties. Your realtor needs to investigate history of home compare to other like properties. Prior submitting an offer you need pre-approval from lender.
Web Reference:  http://www.lynn911.com
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