Now is the perfect time to take advantage of this rocky market. Negotiating may be a foreign concept for you, but don’t worry, these simple steps will make you a pro!
- Prepare an offer that is lower than you want to pay for the home. Everyone wants to feel as though they are getting a deal; there needs to be a little “back and forth” so both parties feel as though they have gained something. Perception is key, and it will keep everyone in the deal all the way through closing.
- Whenever possible, try to present your offer face- to- face. Nonverbal cues and facial expressions can be big clues as to what the seller really thinks about your offer. Smiling and engaged would mean they like it, whereas looking down and being fidgety would mean they probably don’t. (Be careful – a smart seller will use these clues on purpose to try to get you to raise your offer instantly and negotiate against yourself!)
- Let silence be your friend. After you present your offer, stop talking and wait. There may be a very awkward silence that can go on for several minutes. If you start speaking, you will most likely talk yourself out of the sale and the seller will change their mind for whatever reason, just wait.
- Ask for more than you would ever want. The more you ask for, the more you may have to “give up” in order to get the seller to accept your price. The key here is to take the negotiation off the price and onto the other things. If the seller sees you giving up many of the items and making concessions -hopefully they will be more apt to accept your offer of the lower price.
- Don’t be afraid to walk away. There is a lot of power in saying “NO” or “The deal’s off.” This tactic works very well, often times sellers feel that if you are going to take the time to bid on their property that they can work you up on your price. If you say “No, that’s it” and walk away, willing to lose the property and the sale, a lot of times you’ll be surprised by how quickly a seller will scramble to keep you in the deal (especially in this market!) and you can probably negotiate a lower price.
- Don’t be afraid to ask. Ask, ask, ask. You’d be surprised how many people just don’t ask for something, ANYTHING. A price reduction, a new a/c unit, the drapes to stay- anything. Just ask. If you don’t, you’ll never get it. The worst that can possibly happen is they’ll say no.
Obviously the majority of people who are buying a home will be using a Realtor. If that’s the case, make sure your Realtor possesses superior negotiating skills to get you the best deal. If not, hopefully these tips will help you on your own journey to your dream home!