How do you negotiate an offer?(16 Posts)
I'm 'in charge' of our selling process as I'm on maternity leave. We're kind of expecting an offer tomorrow (estate agent thinks so anyway) and have been on the market about 6 weeks. We're desperate to sell as have to move in January of DH's job and have found a house we like. I know I'll be tempted to accept any offer that comes in, just to get shot of the house! Obviously this is a stupid idea and DH would kill me. But what do I do/ say when the inevitably too low offer comes in?
Sorry if I sound stupid!
I think it is expected that the first offer will be declined so don't be nervous.
Tell the EA that you are expecting more and I'm sure he'll indicate whether the bidder has more to offer.
When we sold our house the EA declined the first offer (9% off an already reduced asking price) on our behalf because he knew it would be declined so the first offer he formally presented to us was 6% off the asking price. We declined this because we knew someone else was going to offer that day anywyay. The final offer (from both parties) was 3% off asking price and the EA indicated to us that this was as far as both bidders would/could go so we comfortable that we'd got as much as was possible.
Of more importance is the bidder's position - chain free or not given that you need to move quickly.
I found that the estate agent does all the work tbh. Saying things like "it's a bit low, but it's up to you if you accept it" remember that they want you to get the best price as they're on a percentage. You can always ask what they think of any offer too. It does help tho if you and your DH/DP talk about what you want/ would accept for the house before you start negotiations, just so you agree and a round about figure.
When you get the call, don't do anything. Just say you will think about it. The EA will try and get you into a conversation to gauge your interest. Don't get into it. Just politely say you want to discuss with DH.
Then when you have a jont decision just go back and say yes or no. There is no magic formUla. It is the price you want and the offers you get that matter and no tactics are going to change that.
You will want to ask the EA about the real firmness of any offer in terms of whether the person offering has sold or is close to selling their house yet. If they have no offers on their house yet or a mortgage organised then frankly it is worth nothing and just tell them you wil keep marketing the property until they have a reasonable chance of proceeding to contract.
If you've only been on the market for 6 weeks and the offer is substantially lower than asking price, and you really want more, just say you are looking for something closer to the asking price and then leave the agent to contact the buyer again.
Buyers rarely show their full hand with their first offer so will expect to be knowcked back and have to find a bit more IME.
As ABetaDad says, make sure your agent is working properly for YOU and has established the validity of the buyer's position before asking you to consider offers from them.
Silence is powerful. If you get an offer, leave it a day or two before giving your response. Make them sweat a bit. Repeat, until you get an offer you think you can live with! Takes a bit of nerve, but quite exciting!
With the 1st offer just say to the ea that you obviously need to discuss it with DH before you can comment. Call back at end of day or next day and give your answer. If it is no I expect the ea will ask you want you will accept. DO NOT answer that question with a number!! The answer to that question is along the lines of much higher than that.
The ea will then come back to you either with them saying its the highest that they can go to or with another figure. You go through the whole process again. Never show your hand in this negotiation. Never reveal your lowest price that you'd accept. Thats for you to know and them to find out with an offer.
If you find they are making big jumps in their offers I'd be tempted to say they have more money than they're letting on.
If they walk away from the negotiation then let them sweat for 24hrs. They might be calling your bluff. If you feel that the offer is acceptable after 24 - 48hrs of them not coming back with another offer then I guess its time to decide whether you'd accept it.
You always know when someone hasn't got the means to go higher, they walk away. Invariably they'll come back if you go back 24hrs later and say you'll accept it afterall.
I'm sorry but I have to disagree with everyone above. If you know what your bottom line is for moving then as long as someone offers above that you might as well accept instead of all this fannying around making people wait 24 hours.
I can't understand why your EA shouldn't know what your bottom line is, the more money someone offers the more commission they make so of course they will want the highest offer they can get.
Your DH will have to go in January, if you haven't completed by then because of delays or a chain, what will you do?
Will you go with him into rented? Will you stay behind and do the whole single parent in the week bit?
Any messing around for up to a week making people wait 24 hours massively delays your move. Then hopefully karma kicks in and you are made to sweat it out while someone does it with your offer. Bear in mind all the closed offices over Christmas and New Year.
We lost the house we wanted by 1 day because our buyers didn't come back with their next offer which they now have done. This means we now have no house to go to. So it holds everything up.
My advice is don't mess around, any offer below what I wanted I would immediately tell the agent they need to increase their offer. When it starts getting close to where you want them to be, name your price slightly above what you want, then their counter offer should be at your bottom line price. Or you may get lucky and they are way over
Good luck. I was left behind in a house waiting for all the paperwork to get sorted with the solicitors while my DH lived with his parents for 6 weeks I did the single parent bit and it wasn't nice. We completed and moved but it was stressful.
Fizzy - you'll find not all of us "above" advocated the 'leave it 24hrs' strategy. I also believe that if the offer is lower than you want, then get right back to your agent to tell the buyer it's not high enough - pointless waiting 24hrs before telling them, because it won't make them sweat, it'll just suggest you're actually considering their low offer! The time when it's worth leaving the buyer to stew is when your buyer comes up with a final offer that still falls substantially short of what you've told them is your bottom line and in this instance, it's best to tell them it's too low, give them your bottom line and THEN sit on it and wait to see if they offer more (if they want the house) or tell you they're walking away (if they don't really want the house).
As long as you're realistic about what figure you'd accept, there's nothing wrong in holding out for a price you need to be able to move on yourself.
Well, we got an offer but it really is too low for us to accept. Have said so and hope they'll come back having found a little more money somewhere!
You'll be surprised how much money buyers can find even when they give a "final offer" and then find it's rejected!
Your agent is working for YOU so make sure s/he makes it clear to the buyer that you are looking for a substantially higher offer to avoid any unnecessary back and forth with the buyer.
Fingers crossed for you getting a decent offer.
If the offer is too low then go back with a counter offer. Negotiating the price you'll accept is a bit like a game of tennis. You bat the price back and forwards until you agree.
Also, try to be realistic on the price. We had our offer accepted on a house only to find out several weeks later that the mortgage valuation came in lower than our offer price - £15k to be exact. It's a bit of a long story so I won't bore you with it but the vendor wouldn't lower his price so we pulled out. We were chain free, had our mortgage arranged and were already part way through the conveyancing. The stupid fool is still trying to sell it now.
Haven't come back to us yet, but EA thinks they will. Have made an offer on the property we want. Just waiting to see if they'll accept. If they do, we can accept the low offer on ours anyway, but still hoping for a bit more!
Well, he's just withdrawn the offer he made! Wife changed her mind about the house. Got to start all over again now.
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