Blog Stories Making a 5% down payment work in a seller's market

Making a 5% down payment work in a seller’s market

By Carson Mead, April 30, 2021

My clients Adam and Natascha have been fixing to get into their first home for a couple of years now. We’ve been keeping in touch, and recently I encouraged them to reach out to a lender and see what kind of options they might have. They are qualified for a purchase, but only have 5% down, which can be a challenge when competing against so many other offers in this market. One strategy that I often recommend is to keep an eye out for listings that are sitting on the market. Sometimes this is because the house has a very challenging flaw, or needs a lot of work. Sometimes it’s because it’s overpriced, and catching it with a lower offer right before the sellers drop the price is a strategy that I’ve found to be successful.

We found a house near Alberta that had recently come back on the market, but it was receiving a lot of attention. Undeterred, we pushed forward with an offer. My clients really wanted this house, and so I worked the phone lines/text lines and stayed in close communication with the listing agent. We sent addendums adjusting the terms to stay competitive: tweaking the price, inspection terms, appraisal language, and generally pulling the levels of the offer until we finally got it. My buyers beat out 4 other offers, including one with similar terms and 25% down. It doesn’t always work out this way, but a combination of tenacity and their willingness to stretch and be flexible made for a winning combination. I’m so thrilled for my buyers they got their house, and we close on it this Monday.

Please reach out to me and we can talk about how to get you qualified, off and running, and into your next home!

Carson Mead

Broker | ADU Specialist

My first introduction to the world of real estate came in 2004, when at the age of 22 I bought my first home in NE Portland with my sister. I still remember what a monumental life transition that was. Buying my own home laid the foundation for a lifelong love of all things related to houses. I enrolled in a year-long Building Construction program to gain more knowledge in housing systems and techniques. I have used those tools to enhance my own home both inside and out. I joke that my favorite part of a house is the basement, as that’s where I can see the health and maintenance of a home’s systems: plumbing, electrical, HVAC, foundation etc. While a home inspector is the professional on helping to understand the story of a home, I like to provide as much due-diligence as possible up front before you spend the money and get into contract. Ultimately my goal is to meet you in any endeavor that you are wanting to undertake. If you are looking to sell, I will develop a strategy that makes sense for you with your goals, timelines and marketing strategy. If you want to invest in your home before going on the market, we’ll look at what you can do to maximize your profit: be it refinishing floors, painting, modifying light fixtures, and getting it staged. If you need to stay in your home while selling, I’ll bring in my stager to help get perspective on how to pare down the feel of your home and have tangible goals to achieve in getting ready to go on the market. If you are looking to invest in Portland real estate, we can talk about the big four in analyzing properties. Rental income, principal reduction, equity growth and tax benefits. I work with spreadsheets to outline these assets so you can see the short and long term performance of your investment. Once last piece of my professional and personal life that I spend a lot of time thinking about are ADU’s (Accessory Dwelling Units). Also known as mother-in-law units and granny flats, these can be detached or attached. When I see a home, I look at the property in detail to see how the home is oriented on the lot and if it is ripe for a detached ADU (new construction), or if it is a good prospect for creating an attached unit (a basement apartment). I also look at the zoning to see what kind of potential this could add. I am in mid-process building my own detached ADU. The structure is going to be modern with clean lines and open concept. I live on a corner lot, which means the ADU can have it’s own street entrance. I also have zoning which will allow me to split the lot if I choose and sell it separately at some point. My plan is to keep it as a rental, but this will create a lot of flexibility both short and long term. I am a cooperatively focused broker, with a passion for helping people achieve their goals and succeed in their endeavors. I am patient, understanding, trustworthy, and truly care about your best interests. I serve on my neighborhood association board and the larger Northeast Coalition of Neighborhoods. Please let me know if you'd like to share a beverage, coffee, tea, beer/wine to talk about what’s important to you and see if it would be a good fit to work together. All the best— yelp
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