An inevitable part of selling a house is the negotiation process. Some house sellers who like the back-and-forth drama find negotiating exciting. Others find it tedious and draining and just want to get it over as quickly as possible. Whichever camp you find yourself in, you’ll come out ahead if you’re forearmed with some knowledge and know what to expect. With that in mind, we want to examine the 6 big negotiation points house sellers should be prepared for.
1. The Price
The first negotiation point house sellers should be prepared for is the inevitable haggling over the sale price. Of course, sellers want to sell for as much as possible, and buyers want to pay as little as possible. Here’s how price negotiations typically go . . .
“It’s rare when a seller takes the first offer they get from a buyer and ends up with that same dollar amount on the contract. Typically, buyers will start with house offers that are lower than the list prices of houses when they go up for sale. Think of it as a starting point for negotiations. For example, an item on eBay is listed in an auction at a certain price and, from there, buyers start to bid more and more. A house sale happens in a similar way: You set the price, the buyers offer what they think it is worth, and the two parties communicate between their real estate agents to settle on something fair to both of them.”
How the negotiations go depends in large part on the kind of market, whether it’s a seller’s or buyer’s market. The best course foremost house sellers is to lean heavily on their agent’s expertise in negotiating price. You can consult a at 866-593-7012 to discover more about this.
2. Closing Costs
Another common negotiation point house sellers encounter revolves around closing costs, which usually amount to 2% to 5% of the purchase price. Very often, buyers will try to get sellers to pay all or some of these costs.
A seller may agree to pay some/all of the closing costs in lieu of making certain repairs or as a way to keep the sale price as high as possible. In any case, you can expect buyers to ask you to pay at least some of the closing costs.
Just be sure to consult your agent before agreeing to anything. To discover more, just call 866-593-7012.
3. Closing and Possession Schedule/Dates
A related negotiation point house sellers should be prepared for has to do with scheduling the final aspects of the transaction, that is, the closing date and when the buyer actually takes possession.
The most common influencing factors here are:
- “[W]waiting on another house to close”
- ”[T]trying to hire movers”
- “[S]shifting out of an apartment or condo lease”
- Needing “extra time to vacate due to another home purchase or construction”
Whatever the reason, “negotiating flexibility regarding closing or possession dates is actually pretty standard.”
4. Cosmetic Fixes and Furnishings
House sellers also have to contend with buyers wanting to negotiate cosmetic fixes and/or keep furnishings and household items in place.
Industry experts aren’t kidding when they say buyers will try to and can negotiate anything – “like furniture that perfectly fits a room layout, light fixtures, regrouting sinks and showers, minor landscaping, cars, appliances, and even lawn care items. Sometimes sellers say yes to such requests because they want to make a home more appealing to the buyer, they don’t want to transport certain items to a new location, or they rarely use it.”
5. Home Warranty
It’s common for buyers to ask house sellers for a home warranty, and “[i]t’s very common for a seller to pay this expense upfront. The seller pays the premium at closing, usually around $450-600, and then the new homeowner is responsible for the deductible with any claim made.”
Buyers are typically advised by their agents to negotiate anything related to safety, another reason for the home warranty request. Your agent can advise you on the best course in this scenario.
6. Mortgage Loan Points
As we mentioned early on, buyers’ negotiating down the price is pretty typical, but they may also try some additional tactics in this regard. house sellers, then, should be aware of mortgage loans points as a negotiating point.
A buyer may ask you to pay loan points on her mortgage. Buyers will often try to convince sellers to pay points on their mortgage by playing up the tax benefits, emphasizing that it is a tax-deductible expense for sellers. Really, though, most of the benefit goes to the buyer because this reduces the amount of interest she’ll have to pay. For every point purchased will lessen the buyer’s interest rate.
The Advantage of a Agent for House Sellers
Although there are others, these are the big negotiation points. And for all of them, sellers can benefit and usually come out better off by relying on the negotiation expertise of their agent. So if you want to be one of the house sellers who come out ahead in negotiations, be sure to contact us today at 866-593-7012.