Yes, a cash-offer is incredibly desirable to a seller—but guaranteeing a quick closing, offering a higher down payment or waiving contingencies are all ways for a traditional home buyer (meaning a borrower) to compete. “Sometimes just putting in the highest bid is enough,” Trapasso says. “Buyers should strive to make it as easy as possible for sellers to choose their offers.”
A lot of times this comes down to doing your research—for example, choosing a lender that can offer a quick close can put you on equal footing with an all-cash buyer. Same goes for the down payment. Trapasso says that stand-out offers that are at least 20 percent or higher can bring a traditional home buyer’s offer to the top of the pile, even when faced with those that can pay in full.
As for waiving your home inspection, this can be helpful when it comes to clinching the deal as it means the seller won’t be on the hook to pay for (or credit the buyer) in the face of significant repairs. That said, it’s a choice you want to make sure you’re comfortable with. “I don’t recommend this as there can be major and extremely expensive problems—things like a cracked foundation or plumbing, roofing or electrical issues—in a home that aren’t visible to the naked eye and can cost tens of thousands of dollars to fix,” Trapasso explains. As a work-around, Trapasso suggests opting for a structural and engineering inspection instead, which signals to the seller that you are only looking at the big things in a home and won’t nitpick over small repairs.