Should We Offer Over List Price—and by How Much?

Dear Monty: We live in an area where it has become common to hear of bidding wars. We are ready to start looking to buy in the next couple of months. The very idea of paying more than the seller is asking grates my intuition. But we also want to buy. Is it a good idea to pay more than the list price? And if we do, how much over the list price should we pay? Monty’s Answer: You are not alone in resisting the bidding wars. While no one can predict the future, the market will be changing. The Federal Reserve controls the interest rates that mortgage lenders charge on mortgage loans. It recently signaled that it would soon begin modifying its rules to allow interest rates to rise. Some country areas are reporting that the bidding wars have faded considerably. And finally, as COVID-19 fears disappear, more listing …

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