Negotiating Home Price – How to Give and Take

It’s your house-buying dream scenario: you find the house of your dreams, your agent presents your initial offer to the seller’s agent, the seller accepts the offer without a counteroffer, and the house is yours. Simple! And it sometimes happens just that way.

More often, house-buying is a series of negotiations. Now let’s look at some of the key give and take of negotiating a home price.

Know the market. You can learn much about the real estate conditions of your preferred new neighborhood by doing online research with the public records and real estate listings:

  • Gather the important details about the property and the neighborhood: is the house in foreclosure, is there a divorce proceeding, when was the last time the house was on the market; Google view the street to see what the house and the immediate neighborhood look like.
  • Follow several good real estate blogs on a daily basis to monitor the available properties and the asking/selling prices of properties in your target area.
  • There generally are three types of markets: a highly competitive seller’s market, buyer’s market, or a balanced market in which supply and demand are fairly equal. Know your market! It will affect your negotiating strategy.

Line up your financing before house hunting. Getting pre-qualified/pre-approved for a loan is important (especially in a seller’s market), and it can take months to accomplish. An offer from a pre-qualified buyer carries more influence than one without pre-approval; some agents won’t even show homes to prospective buyers until they have completed the pre-approval process.

Ask questions, reveal little. Try to find out why the seller is moving. Does the seller need a quick turnaround sale? The seller may be motivated to accept a reasonable offer. Does the seller prefer a longer closing period and possibly a rent-back option? This information may give the buyer leverage during negotiations. But be mindful that the seller may choose to divulge very little about the reason(s) for the sale.

It also is prudent to reveal as little about yourself as possible. The seller’s agent could use that knowledge about you as leverage.

Have options. It helps to have other home buying options when you are negotiating on a property. Let the seller’s agent know that you have other homes you are seriously considering and avoid giving the impression of being desperate to by this house. Real estate insiders advise buyers to be dispassionate about a home – or at least appear to be dispassionate.

Be prepared to walk away. When you’ve presented a strong offer but the seller won’t negotiate or compromise, walk away. One of your other house options may be your dream home, after all.

Be prepared to act fast and make a realistic offer. Unless you are in a buyer’s market, be prepared to decide on a house, act quickly, and make a realistic offer. Your offer must be a fair one, based on the value of the property and not the list price. Don’t insult the owner by low balling your offer. You may never have a chance to make a second offer. Note that an initial offer with a price range instead of a fixed number may give you more flexibility, too.

Finally…

It can be easy to get stuck in the negotiating “game” and sometimes lose the property if neither side will give in. If you can’t get the seller to come down in price on all your requests, but the reduced price is favorable to you, you like the house, and you have negotiated well – stop while you’re ahead! Agree to the final terms or walk away.

Choose a skilled agent who will represent your best interests. Expect that the home-buying process will include compromises and being creative with your offer may help move you through the negotiations to a favorable conclusion for both parties. May you be successful in your search, the negotiations, and moving into your dream home.

How To Use Body Language To Win More Negotiations

Have you read the other negotiator’s body language at the outset of a negotiation and made instant assumptions about him? During a negotiation, a great deal of nonverbal signals are cast. You can gain insights into the other negotiator’s mindset by observing why and when such body language signals occur.

The following are insights per what you should observe and how to alter his perspective, based on his intent and how you project your body language.

What to look for in the other negotiator:

To gain ‘real’ unfiltered displays of emotions from the opposing negotiator observe his micro expressions. Micro expressions occur in no more than 1 second. As such they’re fleeting but deliver a plethora of insight and information.

  • Observe micro expressions:

The 7 universal micro expressions are…

  1. Fear
  2. Anger
  3. Disgust
  4. Surprise
  5. Contempt
  6. Sadness
  7. Happiness

  • Listen for temperament:

Someone’s temperament, the combination of their mental, physical, and emotional traits can be glimpsed to assess their attitude. During a negotiation observe the phrases used to represent a thought along with the tonality projected, to gain insight indicating a shift in perspective. If you’re astute, you’ll be able to use such insight as guidance indicating when to shift your strategies and tactics in the negotiation.

Ways you can enhance your persona through body language:

  • Observe the shadow you cast:

Everyone casts an image of who they are, as perceived by the receiver. Attempt to project the image that gives you the proper status. There in will lay how you’ll create a positive persona in the negotiation.

  • Speak with energy:

Speaking with energy is meant to convey your conviction per the points you make. If energy is not conveyed in your sentiments, the perception can be that the points don’t have the level of influence you proclaim them to possess.

  • Make a point by pointing in rhythm:

There’s a degree of symphonically being attuned when pointing at the appropriate time in a negotiation. It’s akin to melodically leading someone’s mental thoughts to an unheard cadence. You can gain subliminal influence by emphasizing a point as you jab the air in an upward or downward motion. To the degree you do so aligned with the words you speak, you appear to be more convincing and believable.

  • Challenge while displaying confidence:

There will be times when you have to challenge the other negotiator by bluffing. It may come in the form of something you don’t know, but want to convince him that you do. When doing so, state your points and questions with confidence. Don’t allow your body language to belie the fact that you’re bluffing by half-heartedly making your point or challenge.

Above are some of the ways you can enhance the negotiation process by using the ability to read, accurately interpret, and cast the appropriate body language signals. If you adopt these insights, you’ll discover how to see the unseen. You’ll improve your chances of having a successful negotiation… and everything will be right with the world.

Remember, you’re always negotiating!

3 Top Tips On CV, Resume Presentation To Help You Land That Perfect Job

When you are looking for a new job you will undoubtedly have to produce an updated CV or resume as part of the application process. These are relatively short documents that on the one hand are easy to put together but on the other they are quite complex and easy to get wrong.

One of the first things to consider when putting a new resume or CV together is its presentation. The substance of it will also matter obviously but if it is not presented well then this can work against any good substance you have there and result in you not getting the job.

Our 3 top tips for getting the presentation of your CV and resume to a sufficient standard are as follows:

1. White space – you want to make the job of reading your CV/resume as easy as possible for the recruiter and one of the ways you can do this is to ensure there is plenty of white space on the page.

CV’s/resumes that try to cram as much in as possible and present themselves as one large block of text are very difficult for a recruiter to consider. Less is more when it comes to CV’s/resumes and you should therefore ensure that they are set out in clearly defined and headed sections and have plenty of white space in the margins and around the text on the page.

2. Use bullet points – following on from the last point you can drastically affect the presentation of the CV/resume by using bullet points for the entries. This will naturally mean there will be more white space on the page and it should encourage you to make succinct points rather than ramble on in long paragraphs.

Try to use a single bullet to cover a single point and try to express them in terms of the skills you have gained from your experience and an example of your experience to demonstrate each skill.

3. Fonts – it is important to tailor your CV/resume to the type of industry you are applying to and this includes the fonts you use. If it is a profession then you should be looking to use white or cream paper with black traditional fonts such as times new roman or arial to give your application that professional feel.

Do not be tempted to use colored paper and fancy fonts to stand out from the crowd as this will often work against you unless you are applying for a job in a particularly creative industry.