The Northern Utah real estate marekt is on fire right now. Yes - the first week of February and Weber County homes are selling more like it's March or April.
That's great right? What a way to start the year. Really - you won't hear any complaints from me because this is good for us, good for the economy and good for the general moral and well being.
Recent deals - as a seller agent and as a buyer agent - have taught me some tips for a successful negotiation. Ready?
1 - Never insult the house. If you represent a buyer and are trying to justify your offer...Do not insult the house! This line was actually said to me "What does he expect, the house is a piece of crap" ... The house is a great custom house in one of the most desirable areas in Ogden, Utah. The house is NOT a piece of crap. Had I repeated the line to the seller it would have killed the deal. They could have doubled the purchase price and been rejected outright.
2 - ALWAYS counter - I received an offer just today. The house has been on the market for a while. When the seller realized he has to answer by 8 PM tonight his first response? No - we're going to have to just turn it down.
There isn't an offer that shouldn't be countered. If the offer is super low from an investor and the gap is wide - let the buyer decide that. Let the buyer cancel.
3 - Sometimes Dates on the contract mean as much as the net proceeds. I had a multiple offer situation. The highest offer came in with the contingency of a home to sell. They were a young couple who truly loved the house. They had watched it, and kept watching as the price came down, and finally it felt within reach...and they weren't ready. They countered that by writing a letter telling the seller just what the house meant to them. Still - their house wouldn't be ready to hit the market until every other deal would have closed. Being 60-90 days out the holding costs on the house exceeded the benefit of waiting.
4 - Come to the table with concessions. If you would really like the wall behind the television patched but aren't willing to kill the deal over it - ask for it and be prepared to remove it. The more concilliatory you are, the more likely you are to experience the same.
Good luck and good neotiations. The real estate market in Weber and Davis counties in Northern Utah are cranking - I hope yours is too.