Tips for Negotiating an Offer

Real Estate Agent with Atlantic Bay | Sotheby's International Realty

Negotiating an offer can be very stressful for both buyers and sellers.  Although a real estate transaction is a business deal, it is very often driven by high emotions of all those involved.  Keep in mind that buyers and sellers have the same goal in negotiating an offer.  Both parties ultimately want the deal to come together.  Here are some helpful negotiation tips for buyers and sellers:

  1. Cooperation:  Throughout the entire process, both parties need to work together to reach the finish line.  Toward that end, keep the lines of communication open and positive.  Make a point to find out what the important issues are for the other person, and respect the other party’s needs.  Being combative can slow or halt the process.
  1. Price:  Both buyers and sellers have access to comparable sales figures.  Sellers, price your property competitively to attract offers.  Buyers, if you see that property is priced fairly, let your offer reflect that knowledge. Making an offer that is far less than the asking price only serves to alienate the seller, especially if you are aware that the asking price is in line with comparable sales.
  1. Compromise:  You may not get everything you want, but neither will the other party.  If each side gives, then each side will have a win.  Remember to keep your emotions in check. Feel good about your wins and don’t dwell on the things you had to give on.  If there are issues on which you simply cannot agree, think about meeting in the middle and splitting the cost of whatever repair you are stuck on.
  1. Keep it simple:  Try not to complicate the transaction with items external to the property, like furnishings and fixtures.   If the basics of the deal work for both parties, don’t derail the process with issues of minor importance.
  1.  Ask your broker for advice:  Chances are that he or she has encountered stumbling points like yours in previous transactions and can share relevant insights with you.  Experienced brokers know how to bring buyers and sellers together, and can guide you through most obstacles.

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