Volumes have been written on the art of negotiating—with more certain to come. Especially in real estate, it will always remain an open-ended discussion because of the infinite variety of personalities, motives, and the properties themselves. Rules are useful as starting points only—especially when it comes to Chicago real estate transactions. They require weighty financial decisions rife with seemingly irreversible lifestyle consequences. That’s a combination which combines to make it a tricky proposition to keep emotions off the table.
Success in negotiating the sale of a home can sometimes result after a bad start—but it’s more of a longshot. That’s why it’s generally a good idea to let experienced agents handle the communications since we can communicate the substance of the business discussion without allowing any accidental misunderstandings to derail the proceedings. Both agents aim to conclude a deal that will represent their clients’ best interests—and both know that a win-win is the surest way to see that it happens.
That having been said, it’s also true that some negotiating tactics may inadvertently minimize the chances of success. Most have the effect of needlessly arousing antagonism on the other side. A lowball offer can easily fall into that category. The homeowner is proud of the property; the buyer would like to own the property—an outlandish lowball offer seems to imply that neither is true. Tiny incremental offer increases can have the same effect—if only because of unspoken overtones they convey: “Your time isn’t important;” “We think you will be motivated by this extra thousand dollars;” or “I have more patience than you do.”
Another dubious ploy is the “take it or leave it” first offer or first counter. No matter how skillful the agents may be in keeping tempers cool, “take it or leave it” communicates “I am the boss, here.” In some cases, it can be taken as a challenge. On the other hand, when it comes to requesting minor concessions (like that nice urn by the back gate), it’s hard to avoid them altogether. Piling on an unreasonable number of them, though—especially if they arrive without previous mention—risks creating a speed bump that can turn into a brick wall!
Negotiating your positions on your behalf in a clear and reasonable manner is just one key part of my service. I hope you’ll call!