The local real estate market is starting to closely resemble that of 2004/2005 where multiple offers are the norm, buyers begin to waive contingencies, and properties sell within hours of being listed. Many are even selling before they’re ever even listed for sale in our local MLS. How and why does this happen?
Every week there are new properties that are going to be listed for sale. Sometimes agents send fliers to other offices with notice of this upcoming listing. On Tuesdays, agents have the option and opportunity to go preview these homes before they’re listed in the MLS. If an agent has a client who they think would be right for the house, sometimes they take them with them or will try to arrange a private showing if the seller allows it.
Other times, it’s just by word of mouth. By networking, agents often discuss upcoming properties to colleagues and/or agents who they think may have clients for a specific property.
It helps if your agent works in the specific area you’re looking. For example, those flyers are distributed by office location. McLean listings get sent to McLean and usually Arlington offices, and vice versa (sometimes there’s overlap like Vienna and Falls Church), but I don’t get fliers from Prince William or Loudoun County being based out of the McLean/Arlington area. Makes sense.
Oh, let me count the ways! Coming from a new mom perspective the idea of not having to keep the place clean and worry about showings with kids is worth so much to keep your sanity! Other people may have the same mindset if they don’t want to deal with open houses and showings and strangers coming in and out of their house. Now that may mean they don’t get as much, but that small price may be worth it to them.
Often times if something is bought prior to market, the buyers aren’t going to haggle over the price. They know they’re getting an opportunity to avoid multiple offers which may drive up the price even more, so if they want it, they’ll make it worth while for the seller.
Now with all of that said, I don’t mean to scare you into thinking you’ll miss out on a house because it’ll sell prior to market and now you have to drive around looking for a Coming Soon sign. That’s not the case. Talk to your agent, have them put out feelers to other agents to see if anyone may have something coming on the market. You might be surprised how many agents know sellers who are thinking about it, but might not be ready, etc. etc.
It can never hurt to ask!