The housing market right now is competitive. Multiple potential buyers are jumping on houses hoping to land a deal, and it’s projected to only heat up moving into the spring home-buying season.

Sixty-one percent of offers written by Redfin agents faced competition from other buyers in March. While it is down slightly from 63% in March 2014, it’s up from 57% in February, the latest housing report from Redfin said.

However, the report cites that the housing market feels more competitive this year compared to last year because there are more homes for sale.

In March 2014, there were 9% fewer new listings added than in March 2013. This year, 9.2% growth in new listings has kept bidding wars below 2014 levels despite a 46% surge in home tour requests and a 36% increase in signed offers.

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Redfin

Source: Redfin

So how are buyers standing out?

The number one answer is cover letters. Cover letters are becoming commonplace again, with 43% of winning offers using them in March, up 35% from last year.

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Redfin

Source: Redfin

Minnesota Realtor Craig Kamman recently put together these tips on how to help win a bidding war

Click the next page for a chart of the most competitive markets.

While the majority of the nation reports that bidding wars are down from last year, California remains an anomaly.

Both San Francisco and Ventura County not only fail to follow the trend but are also surging higher.

San Francisco’s bidding wars are nearly at 100%, rising from 88% last year to 94%, with 32% of homes selling over the asking price.

Although Ventura’s bidding war percentage is one of the lowest in California, it is one of the fastest growing, moving from 33% last year to 54%.

Click to enlarge

Redfin

Source: Redfin

3d rendering of a row of luxury townhouses along a street

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