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5 Top Negotiating Tips

Hi there!

I know. Why on earth is a property consultant telling you how to buy and sell a house on your own? Without their help. It’s a little…unconventional. Truth is, that’s me. I pride myself on being open, honest and upfront with all my clients. 

Because let’s be honest, buying and selling houses is stressful. Or is it? Below you’ll find a step-by-step guide to buying and selling a house. 

Tip 1: Don’t get too involved

When a genuine buyer comes along, there can be a tendency on the part of sellers to empathise with the reasons why they are selling e.g. divorce, mortgage arrears, moving to another country. These reasons create (unnecessary) urgency and may provide your prospective buyer with leverage during the negotiation. Keep the ball in your court.

Tip 2: Alleviate anxieties

When selling your home, it is more advantageous for sellers to alleviate pressures which are pushing the sale. What does that mean in practice? Talk to lenders about the sale process, update them on progress. These are all positive steps for putting sellers in better negotiating positions. The ability to do most things is restricted when the weight of the world is upon your shoulders – the ability to negotiate is no different. Remember, you are NEVER in a hurry to sell.

Tip 3: Silence is golden

Silence is such an under-utilised technique during negotiations, yet it is highly powerful. It demonstrates control, assurance and gives the impression that you are entirely within your comfort zone. If you find yourself with nothing to say then just be silent. Use the time to pause, think, and consider your next move. We’re not talking about giving someone the “silent treatment”, but where and when appropriate, your moments of silence could be your crowning glory.

Step 4: Let your home do the talking

When a prospective buyer comes to view your home, they’re searching for a home for themselves. You may have countless stories of how your home appeals to you, however, it’s important to allow your viewer space so that they can allow your home to tell them what appeals to their desires. Allow the viewer to walk through the house alone, or simply show them around and introduce each room while largely remaining silent. Allow you viewer to ask you the questions.

Step 5: Know your bottom line

Prior to any negotiation, whether real estate-related or otherwise, always know what you’re prepared to settle for. The negotiation is the time for informed thinking. You will find that the tone of the conversation changes, as does the language. It’s important to hold your nerve and qualify all elements of the negotiation. Know if there are any incentives which you’re prepared to relinquish to agree a sale e.g. fridges, freezers, furniture. Understand that buyers are trying to get a good deal as much as sellers are, so take your time and don’t be intimidated or pressured by time limits on offers or by assertions that they’re looking at other houses. 

As a chartered surveyor, I’ve seen it all. I understand that from the outside looking in, the process seems intimidating. Perhaps you’ve gone through it before and were let down, or left out of the loop by your estate agent. Whatever the reason for your hesitation, I hope this email gives you a bit of courage and reassurance that it can be different, even….dare I say it….enjoyable! If you have any questions at all, just reply to this email. I’m here.

Sign up for our next newsletter: Five questions to ask your estate agent (and how to tell if you need one)

Happy house hunting!

Ursula 

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