For the past several months, the Irvine real estate market has experienced what most markets around the country are going through – higher inventory and fewer sales. While this in no way means we are back in a weak housing market, the fact of the matter is that there are fewer buyers currently in the market for an Irvine home or condo. However, if you are a potential buyer thinking of buying a home in Irvine, don’t think for a second that you can take your time and still have the pick of the litter.
Unlike a few years ago when the economy was in shambles, jobs and family wealth have come back to healthier levels, so there are more qualified buyers in the marketplace. If you are serious about your Irvine real estate purchase, do not mess around with low-ball offers – those are a thing of the past. Sellers these days are not in a huge hurry to sell their homes for cheap as they were in year’s past, hence the heavy decline in the number of short sales and foreclosures on the Irvine market (out of 757 current active listings, only 17 are distressed properties – roughly 2% of total inventory). They will be patient for the right offer, so make sure that one is yours.
Come armed with a sizable down payment, proof of funds showing you have the money for the down payment and closing costs, and a loan pre-approval letter (not a pre-qualification letter…have your lender run a credit and basic income/asset check). Irvine sees its fair share of all-cash buyers, so you will have to be very competitive to convince the seller to go with you rather than one who carries less baggage on the way to closing the escrow. There is simply too much information on the Internet these days regarding current market values, so a knowledgeable seller who is serious about selling his home will price the listing based on market value rather than emotional attachment. The quickest way to get your offer rejected is by low-balling the seller; if you want that Irvine home, be aggressive and get it before someone else does.