3 Tips to Winning Your Center City Sanctuary


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Winter might have outstayed its welcome this year, leading to a decline in the real estate market in Center City. Now that the city has “Officially Subscribed to Spring” and the first few signs of spring have finally started to appear, buyers are snapping up properties in Philly any chance they get. It’s definitely been a seller’s market. The few properties that are available and in good condition see a lot of interest from buyers and are selling in days, if not HOURS!

For example, I’ve recently sold two listings within just 24 hours. 2453 Carpenter Street in the Graduate Hospital neighborhood was listed for $425,000 and I had an offer in my hands in just 3 hours.  Next, still in Graduate Hospital, 2118 Montrose listed and sold within 24 hours with two competing buyers. This home sold for over the asking price after the bidding war! I could have sold these two dynamite homes 3, 4, maybe in 5 times over! What does the intense competition in Philadelphia real estate mean for buyers?

Buyers Should be Prepared to Offer Full Price

For sale homes and condos in Philly are scarce, which means if you’re a buyer and you see a place you want, you should be prepared to fight for it. In many cases, that means leading with a strong offer. If you bid below the asking price and another buyer offers the asking price or higher, you’ll miss out on the home, or worse, end up in a bidding war. A bidding war is great for a seller, as it means he or she will get more than expected for the home.  What does the extra thousand or so dollars really mean in your monthly mortgage payment? It equates to a few extra dollars a month in most cases and may be the reason you miss out on a chance to own a home that the next buyer is ready to make their home.

Timing is Everything

Gone are the days in Philly real estate when homes sat for days, weeks or months on the market. Some homes sell within a day of being listed, others within a few hours, and we are hearing quite a bit of multiple offer situations. That means if an agent shows you a home and you like it, you need to act quickly. Don’t go home and sleep on it because if you sleep on it you may not sleep in it! Work with a REALTOR that will help you understand the market trends, values, and pace so you can confidently make an offer right away.

Buyers Should Get Pre-Approved

Getting all of your ducks in a row is important in a highly competitive market such as Center City, Philadelphia. Do what you can to make sure you’ll be able to act quickly when the right house comes along by getting pre-approved for a mortgage before you start looking. A mortgage pre-approval lets sellers know that you’re ready to make an offer and that a bank is ready to lend you money.

As more and more buyers come out of winter hibernation, competition for condos and homes in the city will only increase. Getting organized and ready to jump when the right house comes along means you’ll have a leg up in the real estate market.

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