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Buying a house: 4 points to negotiate with the seller

#Buying a property

Last update : 2023-01-30 09:57:13

Are you interested in becoming a first-time or new homeowner? This ambition should not be achieved at the expense of your well-being or your financial capabilities. That's why you need to make sure you negotiate the best terms with the seller before you commit to becoming the future owner of a home.

When drafting the Promise to Purchase, the buyer and seller must enter into discussion in order to agree on different terms of the transaction. It is then possible to negotiate certain points in an attempt to make the situation beneficial for both parties involved. Obviously, the aim is not to favour one individual at the expense of the other, but to find common ground so that everyone is satisfied.

Stay objective, keep a cool head and use your negotiating skills: here are four things you can negotiate on when buying a property.

Negociate the sale price of the house

1. The sale price of the house

The sale price of the property is undoubtedly the point on which potential buyers are most likely to negotiate. Because of its large financial burden, it is only natural that this aspect of the transaction be at the heart of the buyer/seller conversation. The buyer is looking for a good deal and the seller is hoping to get the best possible price. In this context, it is not always easy to find common ground!

To negotiate skillfully and give yourself the best chance, the most effective strategy is to justify the asking price with solid and verifiable arguments. For example, you could look at recent transactions of similar properties in the area. You could also base your negotiation on the results of the inspection report, produced by a qualified building inspector.

Relying on facts rather than a simple opinion will always have more impact, especially when it comes to negotiating the selling price of a home.

You can also use a real estate broker to support you throughout your purchase project, from the beginning to the conclusion of the transaction. With their knowledge of the real estate sector, this expert will not only help you find your next home, but will also be able to negotiate alongside you the various points of the purchase offer.

Want to know more about negotiating the sale price of a property? Discover our 10 tips for negotiating the sale price of a house.

Negotiate inclusions

2. Transaction Inclusions

If, for various reasons, you do not want to negotiate the sale price, or if the seller refuses to lower the amount, you should know that other options are available to you. For example, you can negotiate inclusions.

Inclusions are items that are included in the transaction, but are not constituent parts of the property. Curtains, blinds, light fixtures, furniture, appliances and the hot tub are just a few examples that can be included in the promise to purchase.

Inclusions can be negotiated between the buyer and seller to allow them to find common ground. The individual interested in acquiring the house could thus agree to offer the amount requested by the owner, provided that the latter leaves behind the dishwasher and the curtains.

Although inclusions can sometimes seem trivial, they can be a good source of savings for the buyer, who will not have to pay hundreds or even thousands of dollars more to get the items and facilities included in the sale. This type of negotiation usually results in a win-win situation for both parties.

Negociate the terms of the purchase offer of the house

3. Terms of the purchase offer

The terms of the Promise to Purchase are also something you can try to negotiate. This will not give you more bang for your buck or lower the purchase price, but it will help you tailor the transaction to your circumstances. Not only can you add or remove certain conditions, but you can also negotiate the time frames associated with them.

The conditions most often included in the purchase offer are:

  • The financing condition, which requires that the buyer be able to obtain the funds required for the purchase of the house before officially acquiring it;
  • The inspection condition, which provides that a pre-purchase inspection must be carried out before the purchase and demonstrate the good condition of the property;
  • The condition of sale, which states that the purchase offer will be valid only if the buyer manages to sell his own residence.

The interested individual can discuss these different conditions with the seller to try to find common ground and establish the timeframe within which the chosen conditions will have to be met.

When will you take possession of the house?

4. Date of possession

If you're not happy with the date the seller proposes for you to take possession of the house, you can try to negotiate this aspect, either by advancing the date or by asking for an extension - whichever is more convenient for you.

Keep in mind that there is a good chance that you will have to compromise on this, as the date of taking possession has a significant impact on both parties. The owner will have to find a new home, while provided it's not your first purchase, you will most likely have to sell your home before occupying your new place.

Both parties will have to negotiate, taking into account the constraints and obligations of each party, to find the ideal compromise. 

No matter what aspect of the offer you want to negotiate, make sure you are prepared and know your negotiation limits. Before you even submit your promise to purchase, think about what you would like to discuss with the seller. This will increase your confidence and maximize your chances of finding common ground with the owner.

Looking for a real estate agent to help you find a home? can help you find a real estate broker. When you tell us about your project, we put you in touch with qualified resources for free. Simply fill out our form (it only takes a few minutes) and we will connect you with professionals.

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