When you purchase a home, the seller will most likely expect you to negotiate the asking price. In fact, to account for negotiations, most sellers price their properties somewhat higher than market value. Negotiating may be intimidating, but knowing what to anticipate can help make the process less daunting.
What To Prepare Before Negotiating?
Negotiating the home’s price takes effort, planning, and sometimes compromise. Before you sit down to negotiate, consider putting the following items in order.
Work With An Agent Or REALTOR®
Many home buyers assume that because real estate listing sites are available at the press of a button, they no longer need an agent. However, an agent is more than simply someone who shows you houses; they are also advantageous when negotiating the best price and determining how much to offer.
Real estate agents are professionals in your local housing market. They understand how interest rates change which properties are expected to appreciate in value, and how much property taxes you could expect to pay. Furthermore, your real estate agent can assist you in drafting the best offer letter possible, complete with all the conditions you require to protect yourself.
Contact a local real estate agent before you start shopping for homes.
Prepare Your Finances
You must be able to prove to the seller that you can obtain a mortgage. When you make an offer on a house without providing proof of finance, you risk losing out to the next buyer.
Make sure you can get pre-approved for a mortgage loan before you submit an initial offer letter. Your lender takes a look at your income, assets, and credit before issuing your preapproval letter. This allows your lender to give you the most accurate estimate possible. Remember always to include a preapproval to submit the strongest offer possible.
Know The Market
The amount of negotiating room you have is inversely related to the amount of interest in the home and whether we are in a buyer’s or seller’s market. You’ll have less negotiating power if numerous buyers have indicated interest in the house. If your local real estate market is cold, you have greater leeway in negotiating concessions, lower pricing, and repairs.
This is another area where your real estate agent will come in handy. Your agent may examine the local market and speak with the seller or the seller’s agent, providing you with a more personal understanding of the seller’s willingness to negotiate the sales price.
If the house has been on the market for a long time and the seller is desperate to sell, you might be able to obtain a good deal. If the seller has already received many offers on the house, it’s a good idea to make a more significant offer immediately.
Tips For Negotiating A House Purchase
When you feel you have everything in order and are ready to start talking about prices, consider some of the following tips you can use at the negotiation table.
Be Sure To Get An Inspection
The results of an inspection might be crucial in negotiating the ultimate selling price of a house. An inspector will travel around the house and look for concerns such as foundation cracks, problems with the heating, ventilation, and air-conditioning (HVAC) system, and so on. After that, the inspector will give you a copy of the report.
If the house inspection shows any flaws that are deal breakers for you, you can ask the seller for concessions. You may wish to request that the seller repair a defect, reimburse you for closing fees, or lessen the price. If your offer contains an inspection contingency or the inspection shows a severe house concern, you can even use the inspection results to cancel the transaction.
Remember that an inspection isn’t the same as an appraisal. Your appraiser will only give you a rough estimate of what the home is worth. Your appraiser won’t let you know that your roof has a few shingles missing or that the upstairs closet has broken lights. An inspector gives you a much closer look at the home and the problems you’ll have to deal with if you buy it. Be sure to get both an appraisal and an inspection before you commit to a home purchase.
Communicate Through an Agent
You may already be aware that there is a lot of real estate lingo to learn. Remember that several of these phrases have legally specific definitions and are frequently used interchangeably. Many purchasers, for example, do not completely comprehend the distinction between an appraisal and an inspection.
Request that your agent handle any conversations between you and the seller. Your real estate agent understands how to phrase queries and demands in a way that protects your interests. Never make direct contact with a vendor.
Ask For Closing Costs
A down payment isn’t the only thing you’ll have to pay to complete the transaction, you must also cover closing fees. Closing costs are fees paid to your lender in exchange for servicing your loan. Some of the most frequent closing charges include appraisal fees, inspection fees, and credit check fees.
The closing fees on a home are generally 3 to 6% of the entire loan amount. This means that these costs might be a significant hurdle to your home purchase. You may be unaware that you can request seller concessions in addition to the purchase price. For example, you can ask the seller to cover a portion of the closing costs.
The seller may agree in order to expedite the deal. However, if the property is in high demand, you may want to postpone asking for closing costs. Inquire with your lender whether you may roll your closing fees into your loan.
Know Why The Seller Is Moving
The more you know about a seller, the better your negotiating position. For example, if your seller is relocating because they have purchased a new house, you may be able to get a better offer by asking for a discount. You won’t be able to get repairs or improvements done before the closing date since the seller will most likely want to be out of the house as quickly as possible.
Request that your real estate agent conduct some research on your seller. Determine whether the seller desires a quick or lengthy closing procedure. If your seller is divorcing or wants to relocate to a better school district, they will most likely be more willing to sell.
Don’t Be Afraid To Walk Away
In some cases, the seller will refuse to negotiate on the price of the house. They may have several offers or be emotionally tied to the house. In these situations, it might be tempting to throw caution to the wind and offer more than you can afford in order to win the bidding war.
Assume that you will have to walk away from every home you visit during the home-buying process. Attend many showings, request that your real estate agent schedule a range of viewings for you, and avoid becoming overly attached to a particular house. This will allow you to bargain more successfully while staying within your budget.
How Much Can You Negotiate?
The amount you offer below the asking price might be totally determined by the condition of the home and similar sales. In a buyer’s market, it may be appropriate to offer up to 20% less than the asking price if the property requires substantial repairs, such as roof replacement or foundation difficulties. Offers ranging from 5% to 19% off the asking price are also acceptable, depending on the need for renovation or upgrading of appliances.
Your greatest asset here will be comparable homes in the area sold for a similar price, and how their conditions and features compare to the home in question. Comps alone can sometimes encourage a seller to reconsider their original asking price.
Negotiating a house purchase price may be nerve-wracking, especially for first-time buyers. Before you begin looking for a property, be sure you have a pre-approval letter. Before you begin comparing properties, you should also pick an agent to interact with sellers and submit bids.
When you locate a home you like, make sure to get it inspected. You might request that your seller give you a discount, make repairs to the property before the sale, or assist you with closing fees. If you are unable to reach an arrangement with the seller, do not be afraid to walk away and continue shopping.