Negotiation is truly an art and not everyone has a knack for it. Having a well-rounded agent – who is not afraid to get into the negotiation arena – is so important whether you are on the buying or selling side. In the over 30 years I’ve been a full-time real estate agent, I’ve honed my negotiation skills and want to share some of the strategies I use when working as both a buyer’s agent and a seller’s agent.
When representing my buyers, I always start with finding out if there are any interested parties. This lets me know if we need to move quickly or are safe to take a bit of time to negotiate. I also ask other questions that might prompt the seller’s agent to provide information that will help in both crafting the offer and in further negotiations. Open-ended questions can be gold if we can get the listing agent talking.
Another piece of information I’m looking for is the seller’s bottom line. This allows my buyers to make an informed decision on proceeding with an offer. If the seller’s number is unreasonable, we can save time by passing and moving on to another, more realistic opportunity.
But just because you are a little bit apart on price doesn’t necessarily mean you have to walk away from the deal. If you can’t get them to budge on the price, we can focus on other ways to minimize your investment. Maybe we can persuade them to replace the roof or fence or whatever other upgrades you’ve identified as “to-do’s” once you move in.
Now, on to my seller clients. Both sides of a transaction are looking for the other’s “number” so, in the same way as I do for my buyers, I want to know the buyer’s top dollar. Countering back in small increments will often lead the buyer’s agent to disclose that figure and allow me to advise the sellers if this transaction is viable or not.
Another tool I utilize, when the market allows, is creating a sense of urgency to compel a buyer to act within a certain time frame. The trick is to do this in a way that makes the buyer want to act, without scaring them off with the threat of competition. Providing a deadline or sharing how many other showings are booked are just some of my tools.
In the same way as the buyer, the seller also needs to consider terms to sweeten the pot and not only focus on the purchase price. Think about what needs to be done around your home and what you might be willing to take on in order to bump up the price. Maybe you have a family member who services furnaces and you can include a tune-up as part of the offer.
No matter what side of the transaction you are on, as my clients you can rest assured that all the tools I have in the trunk are being used to position you for success. Contact me if you want to chat further about your own, unique real estate needs and visit me on Facebook and Google for the latest in Calgary real estate trends and news!