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The Art of Negotiation

Buying a house or selling one? Then, take a deep breath and get ready to negotiate.

Never the same deal twice!

I often get asked the same question over and over by both buyers and sellers while negotiating a deal ... "What is normal?”

I have to chuckle, under my breath of course, because I have learned over my 20 years in this business that nothing is normal.

In fact what is normal anyway? Webster’s’ says normal means in conforming or standard but we are all created with our unique ways making the word normal seem almost strange. In fact every transaction takes on a life of its own and is almost like a strand of DNA, never to be duplicated twice.

Remember you always have a seller and a buyer each with his or her own needs and characteristics and together they make a unique negotiation for each transaction or deal.  Therefore, when you are negotiating your own sale, whether you are the buyer or seller, please please, please do not start asking Uncle Fred how his transaction went in 1972 or start taking advice from your college buddy, who just bought his or her first home in another state. Your transaction is different so focus on your own personal facts and home purchase statistics. Here are some tips to help keep you grounded during your transaction.

* Focus on local comps of like kind homes if you are considering a counter offer.

* Sellers, do not be emotional about the initial offer. If it is lower than you anticipated make a stronger counter but make one, the buyer may surprise you.

* Buyers be prepared when making your offer that you may have to give to get, and go over the comps with your buyers agent prior to making the offer so you know what to realistically offer.

If an asking price is $300,000 and the comps show like homes sell for $290,000 don’t expect that an offer of $225,000 will be accepted. Sellers don’t just give it away under any circumstances.

Buyers if $300,000 is your highest limit then stop looking at homes for $375,000; chances are you are just setting yourself up for disappointment.

* Sellers don’t talk to friends and family about your negotiations, stick to your guns and converse with your Agent, that is why you hired her in the first place. Chances are they have sold more homes in the last year, than your parents.

Mostly, remember that everyone has a different negotiating style so be patient with the other party, perhaps they are not like you but you can both come to a happy NORMAL medium!

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