The Offer

Think of the negotiation of the offer as a conversation rather than an argument.  In determining your negotiation strategy your agent will work with you to help you understand the facts surrounding your offer such as:

  1. The real estate market at the moment
  2. What we know about the seller’s needs
  3. How long the property has been on the market
  4. How the price compares to other similar homes
  5. What we know about the seller's motivation

The facts surrounding these factors will influence what you decided to offer for the purchase price as well as for other negotiated areas such as determining who will pay for closing costs, title insurance, survey, and property inspections.

Once you submit the offer to the seller, the seller will either accept the offer, counter with better terms, or reject your offer without making a counteroffer.  If your offer price is based on facts, then mostly likely the seller will accept your offer or at least make a counter.

When both parties have signed the purchase contract, it’s legally binding and the amount you offered as earnest money as specified in your offer must now be deposited with the escrow agent.  The only way the buyer can walk away from the deal now  without losing their earnest money is if the terms of contract can’t be met.  Terms of contract you may what to consider for your purchase contract to protect yourself could be making the contract valid only upon:

  1. Review of results from a professional inspection
  2. Finding affordable financing and insurance
  3. Passage of specified option period providing unlimited right to cancel
  4. Selling your current property
  5. Approval of all repairs the seller has agreed to make

Each term in your purchase contract that allows you to cancel that contract will make the deal less attractive to the seller because their property will be tied up by a contract that might fall through.  You can make your purchase contract more attractive while still retaining the necessary terms by simply shortening the compliance times for which the terms of contract must be met.