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Seller's Tips

How to handle low ball offers

Robert J. Ott
March 4, 2020

Selling a home can be challenging at times and one of the most challenging things can be handling low ball offers. Low-ball offers can be extremely frustrating when you have done your homework and know what your home is worth. It’s important to remember that it takes several rounds of negotiations between a buyer and seller to make a transaction work. If handled properly, a low-ball offer can turn into a good offer that you can be happy with.

Why do Home buyers’ make a low-ball offer?

While there can be many reasons why home buyer’s make low ball offers, the most common reason it that they feel the home is not worth what it’s listed for. While in certain cases they could be right, in most cases they are not. Sometimes they are “testing the waters” to see what the seller is willing to give. At other times they get bad advice from their agents, or their listening to family members or friends that don't understand real estate.

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Three Piece Real Estate - Earnest Money

How to Handle Low Ball offers in Real Estate!

The first tip to remember is to "Focus on the end game" – Selling your Home.

The end game for any home owner who puts their home on the market is to sell their home. Understanding that the sale of your home is a business decision and nothing personal, can help you stay the course to a successful transaction. Even with the frustration of a low-ball offer, it’s important for you the seller, to stay calm, stay controlled, and focus on your end game.

The second tip to remember is to "Control your emotions"

With the years of putting love and care into your home and then receiving a low-ball offer can be extremely frustrating right? While controlling your emotions is easier said then done, its important to use the logical side of the brain when dealing with negotiations. Recently while selling a home my seller received what would be considered a low-ball offer. The seller was clearly frustrated with the offer when I first presented it. Not only was the purchase offer price low, but the buyer was also requesting a number of seller concessions towards their closing costs. I explained to my clients that the most important thing to remember when entertaining a low-ball offer is that it’s where the purchase offer ends up, not where it begins and to not let emotions get in the way of making a good business decision. After a handful of counter offers, the buyer and seller were able to agree to terms and all parties were pleased with the final outcome.

A low-ball offer is a starting point.

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Three Piece Real Estate - San Antonio Buyers

The third tip to remember is to "Don't forget, You're the boss"

When dealing with low ball offers, remember that you are the boss of the transaction. A common mistake that a seller makes is that they price their home high to leave room for negotiations. This is a bad idea because the buyer and their agent know what your home is worth and will either low ball you when the price is too high or they wont even make an offer. Just remember you ultimately make the final decision on the price and you can choose whether to accept a purchase offer or not, you are in control.

The next and really important tip to remember is to "Always Counter Offer"

One of the biggest mistakes that seller’s make in real estate is not responding to a low-ball offer. Not responding to an offer more then not, results in losing that offer to someone else. Depending on your timeline and financial situation you can start with a small concession on closing costs or move a bit off of the listing price. This will show them that you are willing to negotiation but you will be holding firm to your listing price. A good agent that understands negotiation tactics will probe the buyer's agent with tactical questions, carefully listening for openings to see how much room a buyer has. Another route that agents use is to counter the lowest and final price that your willing to accept to prevent a back and forth with the buyer. In the end you decide on the price your willing to accept, just remember that if you receive a low ball offer you should always respond with a counter offer.

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Three Piece Real Estate - San Antonio Realtor

The last & final tip to remember when handling low ball offers is "Rely on your Realtor"

When selling your home, its critical during the negotiation part to rely on your realtor. Since you the seller are responsible for paying commission, you should choose a realtor who has the knowledge and skills to negotiate low ball offers. With this being one of the biggest transactions in your life, just using a family friend is a risk.

If you live in San Antonio or the surrounding areas and are thinking of selling your home, I would be more than happy to share my expertise, knowledge, and procedures on how to handle low ball offers for the sale of your home.


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