There are a lot of hoops to jump through when it comes to buying a home, and – with solicitors’ fees, conveyancing costs and the price of any planned refurbishment factored in – the process can be expensive too.
However, there are a few tricks you can try to ensure that you’re getting the best possible price for the property itself before you seal the deal.
In this article, experienced fast homebuyers Property Solvers provide a few of their top tidbits of advice to help you get a good deal when buying your new home.
1. Time it Right
You are most likely to achieve a reduction in price on a property that has been on the market for a while, so make sure you take this into account. If a house has been waiting for a buyer for a particularly long time, you may find that the sellers have already reduced the asking price at least once in order to secure a sale.
If you play your cards right, you may influence them to drop the amount still further, but be careful here: they may not be willing to go any lower if they’ve already dropped once.
It’s worth a try whether the asking price has changed or not; if there’s been no interest whatsoever, the fact that there is now a prospective buyer on the scene may be enough for the seller to concede and knock a little more off.
Either way, there is no harm in asking what the likelihood is of the seller accepting a lower offer if it doesn’t seem like they’ve had much success so far.
2. Do Your Research
Have any similar properties in the area sold recently? Were they cheaper, and if so, was there any clear reason for that difference in price?
If nearby homes of a similar size and in a similar condition have sold for less, it’s likely that the seller is asking too much – and you may be able to use the research you’ve done to persuade them to lower the amount.
Even if you can’t uncover any evidence of this kind, it’s worth taking a look at elements such as the property’s state of repair, the standard of the décor and the surrounding area.
Factors such as structural damage, noise pollution or difficult access can provide you with suitable ammunition to support any haggling you intend to do – particularly if you are confident that these aspects are likely to put off other potential buyers.
If you’re looking at a new build, you can also undertake a little research to see if the price can be reduced. Along with an investigation into the local area and the standard of the property, you should also take a look at the history of the developer. Have they changed their asking prices before? If so, have they gone up or down? Remember, in cases such as these, forewarned is forearmed.
3. Don’t Be Too Eager
If you’re obviously enamored of the property in question and let the sellers or estate agents know how desperate you are to own it, this will put you in a more difficult situation – as you’ll probably be expected to back down in any haggling situation as long as the other side stands their ground.
The best approach is actually to mention that you’re relatively interested in making an offer, but you’re still actively looking at other properties. This will put the pressure on the sellers to keep your interest, meaning they are more likely to consider accepting any offer you put in.
4. Put in a Lower Offer First
It’s rare that your first offer is considered your final one with no further discussion. In fact, it’s usually accepted that a prospective buyer will put in a low offer first in order to test the water – and there’s nothing wrong with doing that.
The best practice is to make an offer between 5% and 10% lower than the original asking price. If the seller is eager to get rid of the property, you may find that they are willing to accept this offer straight off.
Many estate agents list homes at a price that is between 5% and 10% above its true perceived value for precisely this reason, so it’s always worth seeing whether they’re willing to budge – as most of them will have planned to do so.
They may make a counteroffer that is slightly higher than the one you made – but this could still mean that you are making a saving compared to the original asking price if you offer the right amount to start with.
5. Be an Ideal Buyer
Sometimes, simply being organized and personable can be enough to convince a seller or estate agent to sell to you.
The complexity and awkwardness of the majority of property transactions is well known – so if you can confirm with the seller that you are ready to complete at the drop of a hat, that you have all the required information to hand and that you are just waiting for their word, you may be seen as a more attractive prospect.
In many cases, sellers and estate agents have to deal with buyers who are waiting for their own property to sell before they can confirm that they are able to complete, so the ease of working with someone like you may be enough to persuade them to accept a lower offer.
These are just a few straightforward steps that may help you significantly when trying to get a good deal on your new house. Remember, all you need to do is be smart with timing, research the property you’re considering and its surrounding area, avoid being too eager, try your luck with a low offer and set yourself up as the perfect buyer.
After that, the groundwork will be complete and all you will need to do is negotiate!