How to make a seller reduce the price of a property

What are some tips for haggling over property prices?
What are some tips for haggling over property prices?
26 February 2018, Redaction

With the upward trend in property prices, buyers want to find their dream home without going overbudget. As such, the key is to get the seller to lower the price of the house. Most of the time, the potential buyer starts with the knowledge that the seller usually sets the prices assuming that there will be some sort of negotiation. It’s not always like that, though.

Foro Consultores Real estate agency notes that when the seller puts their second-hand home on the market, they always set a price “assuming that there will be a negotiation”. The buyer can use this as leverage to start haggling the starting price a bit.

Another way to negotiate the price of a property in 2018 is to talk to the seller about the need for renovations. “Obviously, it should be based on the true needs of the property in question and a valuation of the renovations,” comments the company. It’s best to have a budget in mind, as Francis Fernández, Director General of Comprarcasa, reminds us.

Another type of leverage the buyer has is to do some mini market research to show the seller other similar properties in the area that cost less. Bear in mind that this will show market retail prices, not the final closing prices, as Jesús Duque, Vice-president of Alfa Inmobiliaria notes.

Another option the buyer has is to get an appraisal to show the seller how the market prices are moving. Furthermore, Smerdou emphasises that the money spent on this appraisal is a good investment because if you do decide to buy the property in the end you can use it to contract a mortgage.

Similarly, Jesús Duque advises buyers to be aware of the real sale prices (very different from the prices published on real estate websites) of similar properties which that same estate agent has sold.

Duque also recommends showing the viewing statistics (for physical viewings or virtual) for the property you’re interested in compared with others in the area. Following the trail of the listing is also advisable: “If it’s been on the market for a while and it hasn’t sold, maybe now is the time to make an offer.”

Adapting to the needs of the seller is another way to negotiate the price of a property in 2018. “If the owner needs more time to leave the house but at the same time is desperate for the money to make a down payment on their next home, it’s better to give them time and pay them more money upfront in exchange for a discount,” advise Foro Consultores.

Find out the seller’s situation. “The buyer can analyse their circumstances like whether they need to sell quickly or what their family situation is. Depending on how much of a rush they’re in to sell, you may be able to haggle more,” they add.

In this sense, Duque reminds us that the estate agency gives all the information to the owner, who decides what to do according to how quickly they need to sell. “It’s always better to reduce the price slowly and surely than all at once because you’re in a rush,” he adds.

Finally, Francis Fernández advises buyers to show a budget of taxes and expenses which they have to put up to buy a house, as well as expenses for the notary, for registering the property and paying the ITP property transfer tax.

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