Down Payment Assistance
A Realtor's Advice for Today’s Homebuyers
By Julian Addy, Realtor®, ABR, SRS
June 16, 2021

In an ultra-competitive real estate market, you need all the tools and information you can get to be able to buy a home in Massachusetts. Realtor Julian Addy shared these tips to help you find the right home and get an accepted offer.

First, understand the listing timeline

Generally, homes come on the market on Wednesdays and Thursdays. Listing agents strategically won’t show homes until open houses on Saturday or Sunday. Weekend open houses may be the only chance you get to see a home. After open houses, sellers set a Monday or Tuesday deadline to receive offers. Make sure you are pre-approved before the weekend so you can submit an offer if you’re interested in the home.

Second, know what you need to pay for

A monthly mortgage payment consists of four components: Principal, Interest, Taxes and Insurance or PITI. You may also need to pay monthly condominium fees, depending on the home. Taxes and insurance vary from property to property, so your monthly payment will depend on the property you buy. For example, the monthly payment on a $400,000 home can vary from town to town (or even within the same town) because the taxes and insurance may differ.

Third, make a strong offer that is backed by reliable financing

It is important to understand the seller’s motivation and timeline, so be sure to ask the listing agent about that. Structure dates in your offer match up with the seller’s preferences. You want to know the local market, so ask your Realtor to run a comparative market analysis. Then you will know if a home is priced above, below or in line with recent sales of similar properties.

With homes regularly being sold over asking price, make sure you have room to be competitive with your offer. If for example you are pre-approved for $400,000, look at homes priced below that. If you are making an offer over asking price, contact your lender to see how your monthly payment will be affected. Be prepared to submit your best and final offer as your first offer. There is no guarantee that you will get a second chance to submit an offer, so put your best foot forward.

Lastly, a seller will verify that your financing (your mortgage loan) is solid. MassHousing is a trusted name across the Massachusetts real estate industry. MassHousing provides some of the most competitive mortgages in the market and can help with down payment assistance. They will ensure that your financing goes smoothly.