Negotiating starts the very moment you list your home for sale, when you're deciding what the listing price will be set at. You will need to check all the recent sales of similar homes in your neighborhood. This will help you get a good idea of what your property is worth right now. Once you've set the sales price, you have established where the initial negotiations will begin.
Real negotiating begins when the buyer presents you with an offer. Unless you in the midst of a red hot market, chances are that offer will not include your full asking price in cash, so now you've got to negotiate for the best prices and terms you can get.
You must keep in mind that whenever you make any kind of change to a purchase offer you are basically rejecting it. The buyer is no longer committed to the offer they have made. Negotiating means you are willing to take a chance of losing the buyer to get a better deal, so make sure it is worth it.
If you negotiate well you can usually expect to get a buyer to up his or her offer in terms of price and terms. You can also expect to get what you wanted out of the deal. If you negotiate well at the end of the day you should have gotten the highest price possible, as well as the best terms from the best buyer.
Sellers often feel inadequate when going into negotiations on their property. They might feel that since their so seldom sell a home that they really don't know the rules of the game. Most are inexperienced at negotiating and don't feel comfortable with a deal as large as their home. As a direct result of this feeling, sellers often determine a bottom price that they are willing to go. So if a buyer offers less, they automatically say no. By not going below that certain line, sellers think they are being rational.
This idea couldn't actually be further from the truth. By setting a minimum price you could be losing out on a potentially profitable deal, possibly one of the only ones for a while.
You must keep in mind that in real estate cash deals are rare. Consequently, the terms of a sale are often as important as the price. The message here is to not be so afraid of negotiating that you put yourself into a losing position. Keep yourself open to any options, offers, or deals.
The worst mistake a seller can make during negotiations is to cut the buyer off too soon. If the buyer makes an offer way below your expectations in price and terms you turn them down immediately. This is often a bad move. Buyers who are willing to pay much more will sometimes come in with an initial low offer to test you.
Published by Joe and Colleen Lane, Realtors(R). The Lane Real Estate Team services Tri City Wa Real Estate, Kennewick Wa Real Estate, Pasco Wa Real Estate, Richland Wa Real Estate, and surrounding Southeastern Washington Communities.