Get your finances in order and have a pre-approval letter in hand.
Research your neighborhoods. Consider travel time, schools, amenities. Those things may make the home price worth it to you.
Do not get hung up on small price differences. What is $2500 over 30 years?
Base your offer on the home VALUE – not what the seller has decided it’s worth.
Be ready to move fast. In a seller’s market, homes often sell within days.
Accept that sellers are rarely willing to negotiate repairs in this type of market. Texas is one of the few states that offers a ten-day option period to get inspections done. If you cannot live with the problem or swallow the cost to pay for it yourself, be prepared to walk away in the event the seller says no.
Find out as much as you can about the seller and why he/she is selling. Knowledge is power.
See if there are other things important to the seller aside from price. Many sellers need to lease back, especially in a tight market. If you can be flexible on move-in date, you will likely have an edge over other offers.
Limit your conditions. I would never recommend a buyer waive appraisal or inspections, but avoid coming to the table with other conditions such as having to sell another home first. And even in the case of appraisal, it sometimes can make sense if the seller is willing to accept a cap and you have the cash to cover the difference between the sales price and the appraisal.
Include a personal letter. Many sellers appreciate that someone else will love their home as much as they did.
*** USE A LICENSED REALTOR TO GET YOU THE BEST DEAL UNDER THE BEST TERMS ***