• Michele Wright-REALTOR®

So what SHOULD you negotiate?

Whether you are a first-time homebuyer or a seasoned veteran, the negotiation part of the transaction can be a little daunting and stressful. However, it is necessary to ensure you are getting the best possible deal for your money. So, what should you negotiate when buying a home? 

  1. Closing costs. Your closing costs are determined by a variety of factors, but you can expect it to be between 2% to 5% of the purchase price. Ask the seller to cover some or all of the closing costs upfront or request a closing credit that can be used to make specific updates and fixes to the home. I commonly rely on this after we've negotiated on a contract, had the inspection and need repairs. I've used them with repairs, and in lieu of. Otherwise, this tactic can be good when presenting a full-price offer on a property that has sat on the market a while.

  2. Furnishings. Love how the seller has furnished and decorated the home? Buyers often negotiate keeping couches, fixtures, landscaping items, patio furniture, appliances, and more. And many sellers agree, wanting to make the home more appealing. This is especially common with homes that have been staged.

  3. Inspection and closing timing. Buyer offers that include a quick inspection and close timeline are often more attractive to sellers who have been going through the process for far too long. Just ensure you allow yourself ample time to get your financing in place and complete proper, thorough inspections. When writing offers, I typically put option time as 10 days, and leave the negotiating lower to the other agent and client. That way you have time to do the necessary inspections and negotiate on repairs or closing costs.

  4. Home warranty. Sellers will often agree to pay the premium on the home warranty at closing and then hand it off to the new homeowner, who is responsible for the deductible on any future claims.

  5. Repairs. Your inspection may uncover small or large repairs needed to bring the home up to standard. You can negotiate to have these items fixed before closing or ask for a price reduction to cover the costs. Be aware that with FHA and VA loans, they often have stricter guidelines for what repairs will be required and they tend to require the repairs regardless.

Wish there were more places to negotiate? With a licensed realtor, often times, you will find better ways of coming out with a better net deal. (and after appraisals, there might be a chance to negotiate again). 

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