Real estate negotiation tips that pay off

While compromise is key, don't show all your cards at once

Find out as much as you can about who you’ll be negotiating with before you start the process. Sellers need to know if the buyers are financially qualified to close a deal. Most sellers get hung up on the price. But, the highest price doesn’t always come from a buyer that can actually close the deal.

For example, if the buyers make a low cash down payment and the lender’s appraised value is for less than the purchase price, the lender may not give the buyers a large enough mortgage to close the sale unless the buyers come up with more cash. This can lead to further negotiations and a failed transaction.

You’ll also want to know how long the buyers have been looking for a home. Have they made other offers? Were any accepted? If so, why didn’t they close? Did the buyers back out or was the seller unreasonable? Your agent should be able to get answers to your questions by talking with the buyers’ agent.