Home Buying

Real estate negotiating

Good real estate negotiating is built on clear, open communication. Often times two separate parties on opposite sides of an issue will worry about what the other side might want, might say, might react to. A good deal of undue stress in negotiations comes before you even begin talking to the other side. This is unneeded and unhelpful.

First, understand your own position and desires. It is difficult to get exactly what you want in a negotiation if you don’t know exactly what that is. What do you want out of this deal? In real estate transactions, “money” is most often people’s immediate answer, but you may find that there are other, more valuable outcomes you can get: time, flexibility, or maybe that antique flagpole in the front yard. Getting creative in negotiation almost always unsticks a sticking point and moves the deal along.

Then, listen. You know your own wants. The other side is no different. Often times, what two sides want aren’t even the same thing and the deal can be resolved easily. Those kind of “win-wins” happen more often than you think. In situations where all parties desire the same thing, you can all mutually recognize that fact and then think of alternative ways to make everyone happy. In the many years of real estate negotiations that I’ve seen, the owners, buyers,  and agents who walk away happy are the ones who try to make the other side happy, too. Click here to learn the details.

Read more Q&A articles about the “Negotiating” stage of the Home Buying process:

  1. We made an offer and the seller countered much higher. They are unrealistic. How can we get them to see reason?

    Question: We are dealing with an unrealistic seller. We made a good offer on a home. The seller countered with forty-thousand dollars higher than our offer. According to our agent, the house is not on the market, so they are saving about three percent with a lower commission. The house needs significant upgrades. The bathrooms and […]

    March 26, 2018
  2. I want to make an offer on a brand new house I found. Should I hire a real estate agent?

    Negotiating a new home purchase is very similar to buying a pre-owned home. There are differences. Most new-home buyers don’t think to have the home inspected by a home inspector, because the municipal building inspector has to sign off. That inspection is for code compliance. Builders, or their subcontractors make mistakes that have nothing to do with code compliance.

    November 26, 2017
  3. Dad backed out of an agreement. What can we do?

    Reader Question: My wife and I renovated a home owned by my father under the condition that the house would eventually be signed over to both of us. He does not want to sign the house over to us now that we have completed the project. He only wants it in my name and his. […]

    October 24, 2016
  4. Contractual error costly for real estate agent

    Reader Question: My listing went under contract. The seller texted me and asked if I had remembered to exclude the exterior residential flagpole. I had forgotten. What can I do if the buyers insist on keeping the flagpole? This flagpole is the seller’s keepsake. Oh dear, please advise. Thanks. Arissa D. Monty’s Answer: Hello Arissa, […]

    March 17, 2014
  5. Real estate rehab gone wild – the options?

    Reader Question: My son was buying a home that the owner/contractor was to rehab. The deal started in June 2013 and due to issues he still has not completed the building. In December, the new septic did not pass inspection; therefore we ended the deal. I put a deposit down on the house, paid for hardwood […]

    January 21, 2014
  6. Developer track record important in housing projects

    Reader Question: A year ago I bought a town home in a condo project. I asked about parking and told that each homeowner would have one additional space outside to park as well as in their garage. The garage is built into the home. Since I moved in, the municipality painted one side of the […]

    December 24, 2013
  7. Should we sue a home buyer that backed out last minute?

    Reader Question: My wife and I had a contract to sell our home for cash. The buyer gave us 3 weeks to vacate. All contracts were signed, the house passed inspection and all disclosure were made and understood by the buyer. We had a moving sale, selling the bedroom set, some furniture, garden tractor, etc. We also purchased another home […]

    September 17, 2013
  8. Buying a home? Avoid risking your earnest money deposit.

    Reader Question: We sold a home in Feb 2013. We received a pre-approval letter from the buyer’s lender in March. Because of the buyers pre-approval, we went out and purchased a home and put a $5,000 deposit down. The “old” home sale did not close on the designated closing date because the lender dragged their […]

    June 10, 2013