Q: My husband and I are planning to by a home from a well-respected but expensive builder. He has five home plans in his newest small community. Do we just pay what he says, do we negotiate ourselves or do we hire someone to negotiate for us — and if so, who? –D.J., Florida
A: Congratulations on finding a home you like enough to buy! Very generally speaking, new-home buyers often pay what the builder is asking for the property. However, as the market has shifted to much more of a buyer’s market over the last few years, it has become much more common for some negotiating to take place between buyer and builder.
I haven’t heard of many buyers who say they haggled a builder down significantly on the home’s sale price, but I have heard of many deals on other aspects of the transaction, whether it be getting the builder to cover a buyer’s material upgrades, pay for several months or even years’ worth of the buyer’s homeowners association (HOA) dues, or throw in additional features or a closing cost credit.