How to Negotiate with Sellers

Ronnie Corley
Cell: 760-382-7664
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Here's a few tips to help you negotiate with the seller.
  • Know the market and negotiate accordingly.  Your agent is the best source of advice in this area.
  • Never negotiate directly with the seller. That's what your real estate agent is for!
  • Always provide a prequalification letter from the lender with your offer if you will be getting a loan.
  • Always have your agent prepare a Seller's Net Sheet to present with the offer.
  • Make a list of things that will need to be fixed, replaced, or that are damaged.
  • Find out as much as you can about the seller's motivation and reason for selling.
  • Never let the seller know how much you like the property.
  • In a hot market, ask for an acceptance/counter upon presentation of offer.
  • The more you put down as earnest money (without conditions) the easier it is to negotiate terms.

Doing Your Due Diligence

Once you have an accepted offer (hopefully with a due diligence clause), you should consider hiring a property inspector to inspect the property. You can also do a walk through to visually inspect the property. During the due diligence period, you should check all appliances, water faucets, hoses, toilets, AC, Heater, Hot Water, etc. You will also be able to review a Seller's Disclosure with your agent to see what the Seller knows about the property. By law, the Seller must disclose in writing any material fact that would adversely affect the value of the property. You should also meet with a title company or escrow officer and review the title to make sure that the person selling the property is the legal owner and that there are no unknown encumbrances or problems with the title.