Finding and buying a property can be extremely exciting, but it can also be very nerve wracking for buyers who must try to navigate the process, especially if they haven’t done so before or aren’t sure what it entails.
Price is a huge part of buying a home and offering below asking price is not uncommon, but it is important to know how and when it is appropriate to haggle and the unspoken rules behind it.
We spoke to some experienced West London estate agents who gave us their top tips, guidance and advice for negotiating property prices.
Do Your Research
It’s a good idea to research the local property market and have a good understanding of how much comparable properties have been selling for nearby. Check sold prices on websites or apps such as Rightmove to see how much properties that are similar to the one you want, have successfully sold for recently.
There are a few things you should find out about the property you want to buy that will help you to establish if there is any room for negotiation.
- How long has it been on the market?
- Is the seller in a hurry to make a sale?
- Have they had any other offers?
If you can ascertain these points, then it can give you an indication of if and how much room there may be to haggle. A property that has only been on the market a short while and has had lots of interest will be much less likely to accept lower offers than one that has been up for sale for several months or has owners that are keen to move quickly.
Estate agents can play a big part in the home buying process so there are a few things to remember.
- The estate agent will be working on the seller’s behalf, not yours so be careful what information you tell them such as how interested you really are, your max budget etc.
- The estate agent will want to get the property sold so get them on side and convince them you are serious and ready to make it happen.
Play It Cool
Although you want to register your interest you never want to appear too keen. This means during any viewings to see the house play down your interest, don’t be rude but be reserved and don’t be afraid to gently point out any drawbacks or work that needs doing which you will have to factor in such as a new kitchen.
You want to present yourself as an attractive buyer who they want to deal with so be sure to make sure that they know why you are the best person to sell to such as if you are – a cash buyer, chain free, the deposit is easily accessible, you already have a mortgage in principle agreed with a lender or you have sold your property as these are all plus points.
Don’t Get Greedy
Some buyers make the mistake of trying to ‘get a good deal’ by making an offer that is unrealistically low. This can not only leave the seller feeling insulted but means they are less likely to want to deal with you further and will feel like you aren’t serious about buying their property.
Be Ready To Walk Away
You may have found your dream home but if the sellers simply aren’t willing to accept an offer that you can afford then it’s time to accept that maybe it wasn’t meant to be and walk away. There are always new properties being listed and although it might feel like you’ll never find one better you will, and it will be worth the wait.