Real estate negotiating in is not an everyday occurrence for most people. In fact, we don’t often negotiate in our everyday shopping experiences. We don’t stand in line at the grocery store or the clothing store and haggle with the checkout employee over the prices of the products. We either buy, or not.
On big items, like cars and houses, yes, we do negotiate. For most of us, we’re glad we only do that every few years; negotiation is not a skill that gets used by most consumers every day.
For a real estate agent, negotiation skills are one of the top skills necessary for success. [imho] Unlike the car dealership, a successful negotiation in a real estate transaction happens when all parties reach a conclusion that they are satisfied with. We like to call it a “Win-Win”. (One side beating the crap out of the other isn’t really what we call a win-win:)
Real Estate Negotiating 101
Here are some general negotiating tips that are applicable for both buyers and sellers:
- Don’t Let Emotions Rule. It’s true that often people buy emotionally; if you don’t love the house, most likely you shouldn’t buy it. But emotions need to be in check when you’re negotiating. Rational heads make the best decisions. We’ve seen people get emotionally worked up and lose sight of the end goal, while standing on principle over a small matter.
- Don’t take offers or counter-offers personally. Don’t be offended if the other party doesn’t agree with you on the value of a house. (The other party probably doesn’t know you, it’s really not personal).
- Set Baselines, but remain flexible. Decide ahead of time what you want most and what is least important, then keep your eye on your goal. Remain flexible. Sometimes a change in closing date or a problem with the home inspection or the appraisal can rattle a buyer or seller. Be ready to work together to reach the goal.
- Remember the important things, the things you really don’t want to live without in a home. Keep those items at the top of your list and be willing to let go of the less important things.
- Remember that the best situation is a win-win. If both parties can get what they want most, everyone wins.
Real Estate Agent Negotiating Skills
Your Agent, whether a buyer’s agent or listing agent, needs to be a great negotiator. That usually comes with experience, but some people just have a natural talent for it. Either way, make sure that your agent has the skills to negotiate well on your behalf in a competitive Real Estate market.
If you’re not sure how to discern whether a real estate agent is a good negotiator, ask for Referrals. Statistics say that 4 people you are acquainted with, will have a real estate transaction this year.* Call someone you trust, ask them what their experience has been. You wouldn’t pick a professional in any field without a referral, why should the biggest investment of your life be any different?
*Buffini & Co.
See our Testimonial Page.
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The Highland Group
Frederick, Md 21701