How to Find Off Market Properties

In a seller’s market off market properties are the holy grail for buyers. They provide less (if any) competition so that as a buyer you can be confident you are getting a good value and not just making an emotional decision However, like most holy grails they can be pretty hard to find.

Here are three ways we have had recent success finding potential off market properties for our clients

  1. Look for previously unsold properties: We had an investor looking to buy a condo. She had narrowed it down to three buildings that she was interested in but there was nothing available. We looked at the history of the buildings and found 6 units that had been listed in the past few years without selling that we thought might be a god fit. We reached out to all 6 previous listing agents, one got back to us (almost immediately) and within 48 hours we had a conditional offer on a condo in Drake. A week later the same floorplan was listed on MLS for $20,000 higher than the price we paid
  2. Reach out to your contacts Real Estate is a relationship business. Your Realtor should have connections they can reach out to whether this is other Realtors within their office, Realtors they know across the city or builders they have worked with in the past. A good Realtor knows how to nurture these relationships and when it’s appropriate to ask for a favour.
  3. Get out into the community: Earlier this year we had clients looking for a home in a very particular pocket of a neighbourhood. We sent 1000 letters to the neighborhood explaining exactly what the client was looking for. From these letters we got three calls, one of which fit the requirements and we were able to arrange a private. Unfortunately, after seeing the house in person, it needed more work than the buyer was willing to do but it gave them some good food for thought and we quickly found the right home shortly after.
There is obviously no guarantee these strategies will work in finding off market home but it’s worth a shot, isn’t it? Relying only on the mls to find our clients their next home isn’t enough.