Many sellers are intimidated when there are distressed properties for sale in the area or foreclosures putting downward pressure on prices. However, generally, there is a 20% to 30% difference in selling prices between those homes and seller-occupied homes in good condition. You see, those distressed properties are usually in poor-to-terrible condition. In many cases, they will not even qualify for a mortgage without extensive modifications and repairs, and that’s not going to be possible for most buyers.
So, the first thing to remember is that you’re selling a “ready to move in” property and thus commands a higher price. The more “ready to move in” it appears to the buyer on that first walk-through, the better the price you’re going to get. So, I’ll make some suggestions as to landscaping, curb appeal, outdoor and indoor improvements, and possibly even “stage.” Staging is the process of moving, adding to or taking away from furnishings in the home to make it seem more spacious and to allow potential buyers to view it as “their home” in the future.
Consider the possibility of post-inspection repair requirements by the buyer(s) as well. The time to think about this is from the first offer, as you don’t want to negotiate a purchase price that leaves you little or no room for possible repairs or condition corrections. This single item is the cause for the vast majority of deal failures after a successful initial price negotiation.
Some negotiations are short and sweet, while others can involve multiple counters offers with terms and conditions related not only to price but also related to closing costs, items included in the sale, partial owner financing and more. My job is to work with my sellers to know their needs and to tailor the negotiation to those requirements to get the best deal for them.