Attention Snohomish County Sellers – Tactics That Can Backfire!

Snohomish County home sellers should not become overconfident in a seller’s market, or they might end up sabotaging their sale.® recently featured common home seller negotiation tactics that can backfire, including:

Starting a Bidding War

If mishandled, people may assume the worst, and the best offer may walk away. For example, bidding war problems can surface when failing to clearly explain up front how you intend to handle multiple offers. If your offer deadline is too many days away, some buyers may just move on. 

Also, the seller should consider other terms within the contract besides price.  The offer with the highest number does not always mean it is the best offer! Items that may be important to a seller are the other contingencies contained in the offer, and the closing date. All items that are written into an offer have an effect.

The type of financing can be an important part of the offer. As a seller, do you take less money and go with a financing option that has a bigger down payment? Or, do you take the higher offer with a low down payment type of financing? These scenarios are common in many multiple offer situations. One reason why it's best to have a seasoned broker to help guide you through the offers!

Arguing over Repairs

Buyers may walk away if sellers refuse to make repairs that turn up during a home inspection. The seller needs to carefully consider how good the offer is before refusing to make repairs. When the buyer’s offer is high, and the seller tries to negotiate away from legitimate repairs, the buyer may feel the seller is taking advantage of them. 

There is no such thing as a perfect house. There are usually items that need to be addressed after the inspection. The question is, what items are important to the buyer? All items of concern can be negotiated. It is best to have your broker go over the items one by one & work with the seller to make the buyer feel good about moving forward with the sale. This is another example of a step where a real estate broker adds value to have representing you & your interests!

Staying Adamant about the Closing Date

Sellers may try to make the closing date so it perfectly aligns when they are moving into their new home. But buyers may have scheduling issues of their own, too. “Sellers need to understand that they may have to move twice, since buyer and seller schedules seldom work out perfectly,” says John Powell, chief development officer at Help-U-Sell Real Estate in Tucson, Ariz.

 Most items written into a contract are negotiable, including the closing date. The representing real estate brokers can work together to make it a “best for all” situation. There needs to be room for compromise on each side.

Getting Greedy over Fixtures

Fueds about fixtures are definitely common. Before they list their homes, sellers and their real estate agents need to carefully review what stays and what the seller wants to take with them. The seller may even want to remove the items before they list the home. Otherwise, the buyer might get so upset that a fixture they fell in love with is now missing that they won’t buy the home.

So, in short, the house should sell with all attached fixtures as when it is shown to buyers UNLESS it has been stated in the listing that certain items go with the seller. That being said, it still doesn't protect from items being asked for in an offer anyway. Look at it this way, if a buyer is making a great offer at or above full price, they may feel it is fair to ask for some item(s) that the seller has no intent on leaving. They could become a negotiating item that can delay the sale.

Let’s take the example of a washer & dryer that are in the house but not included in the sale. This is one that comes up all the time between buyers & sellers. Does either party really want to take the chance of an issue that can stop a transaction in its tracks because of a couple of appliances? Of course the answer is no, but it something that both the buyer & sellers need to be made aware of by their broker before it becomes an issue of contention.

Each home sale is unique, but keeping flexible throughout the whole process should help move it through closing.