Marin Home Buying Strategy: Make like a Cougar.

Not that kind of cougar!

As the Fall market sets in and there are fewer listings and less buyer competition, the trick is to get everything in order and then be ready to pounce. Fall is a good time to be a smart buyer in Marin.

City views from Camino Alto on Corte Madera Ridge.

City views from Camino Alto on Corte Madera Ridge.

Many families who wanted to move in time for the school year have already done so. If they could not find what they wanted, they are probably waiting until next spring. So the buyer pool is smaller, and less competitive. The market is still very strong, but the totally insane multiple offer situations we saw in the spring are now more the exception rather than the rule.

As the days get shorter and homes sit on the market a little longer, price may be more negotiable. We are heading in to the holiday season, and Sellers who have not yet sold their home and want to get on with their lives may become more flexible on price. Twice this week, when talking to another agent and letting them know that the home was currently priced out of reach for our client, the agent said, “The Seller has said they will look at all offers. Please make one.”

Selection is still fairly good, and in some areas, inventory is increasing. In fact we are at our highest inventory level right now in months, with 835 homes for sale in Marin. Just this week in Larkspur and Corte Madera, there were several new listings of smaller homes on level lots in walkable locations. These properties, especially if they have a large enough lot that would permit some later expansion, are often the best deals, if you consider their long term upside.

The first trick is to know exactly what you are looking for. Then you must get your financial ducks in a row so that you are ready to pounce. next, you get out there and look at everything you can, especially as the weather gets worse and rainy (we can only hope) and all but the most ferocious and diligent of buyers have given up. And then you will be ready to pounce!

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