Are you Telegraphing too Much Motivation in Your Real Estate Negotiations

April 3, 2008 | By | Reply More

Are You Telegraphing too Much Motivation in Your Real Estate NegotiationsWe had a lead come in the other day from an out of town seller. It’s a property in Sumter, South Carolina about an hour and a half away. It’s a 2/2 house that sits on two acres. It was originally 3 bedrooms but they turned one of the bedrooms into a dining room.

Inside Tip: 2 bedroom houses are much less marketable than 3 bedrooms. Anytime that we come across a 2 bedroom, we look to see if there is any way to add a third bedroom. If not, we want to make sure that we get an even better deal than usual. 2 bedrooms have always taken longer to fill with a tenant or sell outright.

Anyway, she was looking to sell fast, and I found out that the property was free and clear. Always a good recipe for a deal. She said that at this point, she would take $45K. She was asking around $60K. As I was talking to her on the phone, I jumped onto Zillow to comp out the property. Anytime that a property is out of town, I use Zillow to get a quick idea of value. As Zillow would say, the “Zestimate” came to $77,500. Another positive sign that we might be onto a deal.

I told her that we would do some research and get back with her. I passed the info onto Dusty so that he could take it from there. He spoke with her a couple times and took his usual casual approach. After she didn’t hear back from Dusty yesterday, she called and left a message this morning. She said that if we gave her an earnest money check for $500, she would let it go for $35K.

Now, we haven’t even seen the house or met the seller in person, and we already have her down to $35K. By remaining in the unmotivated position, we’ve got the seller down $10K from her asking price, and this is before we make the drive out of town to check it out. $10K might not sound like much of a discount but it is relative to what is being asked. That’s almost 25% off her asking price before Dusty goes in for the close.

The unmotivated role is a powerful position in negotiating. The least motivated person is always in control.

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Category: Marketing, Negotiating

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