Categories: Real estate news

Bidding blind: Nearly one in five homebuyers made an offer before seeing home in person

19% of people who bought or sold a home in the past year made a bid on a home before viewing it in person, according to a recent survey conducted by Redfin. Could this be the start of a new trend in the way people buy their homes? Find out more about this type of home buying in this recent Redfin article by Alina Ptaszynski. 

When Jason Wooten decided to buy a home in Denver, he knew it might be an atypical experience. Jason lives in Alaska. Knowing that Denver is one of the most competitive real estate markets in the country, Jason was prepared to move quickly when a property he liked hit the market. He realized that he likely wouldn’t be able to see homes in person before making an offer.

“If I wanted to see every property in person, it might take days to arrange for travel there and the property would be gone by then,” said Wooten. “When my condo came on the market, the seller provided good photos and I did a tour via Facetime with my Redfin agent. I felt comfortable with everything and had an offer in that day.”

Jason was under contract that evening. He closed on his home last week and will see his home for the first time when he flies into town this week.

Buyers of high-end homes were almost twice as likely to have made offers on homes sight unseen. Thirty-nine percent of people who bought homes for more than $750,000 made offers without seeing homes in person.

For overseas or out-of-state buyers like Jason, bidding sight unseen is the only option. But offer deadlines and competition from other buyers are additional factors that can drive blind bids. Investors who purchase multiple distressed or foreclosed properties as an investment often do so without seeing homes first.

When possible, many buyers will send a friend or family member to tour the home in their place before making an offer. Karla advises having an inspection and including an inspection contingency in the offer, if possible. The agent or inspector can video stream the inspection so that the buyer can follow along and ask questions and feel confident that they know about any issues or problems with the home. The inspection contingency and other contingencies provide an “out” for buyers should they find something out about the home that makes them not want to move forward with the purchase.

[Read the full article here]

Anna Young

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