Whistler Blog

Tips for Buying a Home in a Competitive Market

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In most areas real estate is currently experiencing a boom, and Squamish is no different. With prices soaring in Vancouver, many are looking further afield to find property, which in turn is creating competitive markets across the province.

Just north of Squamish, Whistler is also experiencing record prices, and has further contributed to the limited inventory in Squamish. This means that buyers are finding it tough to secure the properties they want, and have to be extra prepared if they want to succeed.

We have put together some tips to help buyers searching in this competitive market:

Get preapproved

Preapproval is one of the first steps that prospective homebuyers should take, although it is still surprising how many buyers fail to do so. Securing a mortgage approval letter from a lender will put you ahead of buyers who are not preapproved, or may only be prequalified.

When you submit an offer with preapproval this shows that you are a serious buyer and are ready and able to close the deal faster than other buyers.

Find a knowledgeable, local Realtor

It is always important to find a knowledgeable Realtor who can guide you through the process, but in a sellers’ market this is especially the case. We would also put the emphasis here on finding a local agent as they understand the nuances of the market in which you are looking to buy, more so than an outside agent.

All of our agents are long time locals and are very familiar with the Squamish real estate market. This means they are best equipped to help you with your search and will be able to get you to the front of the pack in a competitive market.

Be patient, but ready to act

When looking for your perfect home it is important to be patient in your search, as it can often take longer than you think. Do your research and evaluate your needs and wants in order to narrow down your search.

That being said, when you do find the property that fits your criteria it is imperative that you’re ready to act immediately. In a competitive market homes will not last long and in many cases there may even be multiple offers to compete with.

Make a strong offer

Outside of typically ‘hot’ markets, buyers can often submit a price that is below asking and expect some wiggle room and negotiation. However, in a competitive market it is essential to be realistic and make a strong offer that will ensure you have the best chance of securing the property.

An experienced Realtor will help you make a strong offer that matches the sellers’ expectations, while putting you ahead of the competition.

Look for hidden gems

Every market has properties that don’t stand out, or hover just under the radar. They may not look the best, or have the most up to date technology or upgrades, however, with some attention and investment they could well be your dream home.

It can be expected that not many homebuyers want to live through a home renovation or have to carry out their own changes. But if you are serious about securing the best possible home then this is something to consider.

Be sure to evaluate the cost of potential renovations, including contractors and the impact on financing, prior to submitting an offer. However, finding a home that needs a little bit of love can often be the key to securing an amazing property in a competitive market.


For more information, and to start your property search in Squamish, get in touch with one of our agents.