These negotiation tactics have proven themselves to be some of the most effective when dealing with residential real estate. Buying someone’s home is almost always a sensitive negotiation because of the strong feelings people have about their home.
Get personal. Submit an introduction letter with your offer telling the seller anything positive about you and the home. An example would be what your job is, what you like about the area, how you appreciate what the seller has done with the home, landscaping, etc. This “softens up” the seller in many cases because they want to sell the home to someone they like.
Don’t bother sending an introduction if the seller is a bank, they won’t see it and don’t care!
Don’t get too personal. One tactic that almost never works is to “beat up” the seller over their price or the condition of the home. Giving the seller a list of comparable homes with lower prices or a list of repairs needed will make them LESS willing to negotiate with you! Remember, this is their home and people will negotiate based on emotion.
If you get the seller to accept a much lower price, they will typically not budge much on doing repairs.
Make it about you. If you come in with a low offer, you’ll get much more flexibility out of a seller if you use this tactic. Tell the seller “This is how much we can afford to pay for the home. We did not want to offend you, we just wanted to give you this offer in case you can flex on your price now or in the future. Thank you.” This tactic has worked many times for our clients because even if they won’t come down today, they often will later on.
A seller is allowed to accept another offer while they are negotiating with you so don’t drag out negotiations for too long.