Brisbane's sales market

5 tips for Brisbane home buyers to save on their price!

You’ve found the home that ticks all the boxes. (Or most of the boxes anyway… there’s no way you’re doing the inspections run-around anymore!) So you’re ready to make it yours. But before you call the agent to submit your offer here’s 5 essential things for Brisbane home buyers to consider that almost always lead to a lower price:

1. The seller is your friend. Some of us slip into adversarial mode when we’re buying big ticket items, but this is one time when you will really benefit from a co-operative approach. Ask the agent what the seller wants with timings and conditions and see if you can accommodate them. Be careful not to start your offers too low or you could insult the seller immediately. They’ll be less likely to open their minds and trust you (and trust is critical in a real estate transaction.) If you think the asking price is actually way too high it may be best to tell the agent you’d like to offer but don’t want to offend. That’s a soft way to get started and yes the agent will know if there’s a wide gap that needs to be dealt with!

2. It’s tempting to want to talk down the price by telling the agent all the things you dislike about the property. And it can help us explain how you arrived at your offer if you give us a few notes, including some other homes you’ve compared this to. But too many objections and you’re just at risk of upsetting the sellers again. It is their property and they can take comments personally.

3. A solid 5% deposit gives the seller some peace of mind and reassurance that you’re genuine. Ignore your well-intentioned friend/bank manager/lawyer who thinks they’re helping by suggesting a $1000 deposit – a contract is just a piece of paper and “earnest money” helps lower the seller’s risk. And that might just lower your price.

Brisbane real estate agents4. Do you really need the contract subject to Uncle Jim checking out the home? Yes there’s a lot of items you may want to check before being committed to the purchase and you should protect yourself. But consider this – the seller is locked into the contract the moment they sign. They don’t have statutory cooling-off periods, or finance conditions or the various ways to terminate that you do. And they can’t sell to anyone else until you choose whether you’re proceeding. So they’re off-market waiting to hear what’s happening with your contracts, their lives on hold. The shorter you keep the list of conditions and the time needed, the more favourably the seller will view your offer. And that can equal a price saving.

5. Move quickly. There’s a funny thing about humans – we all want something that other people want. So once you make an offer it shouldn’t surprise it can often lead to other fence-sitting buyers deciding to jump in too. One of the first things our sales team do once they receive an offer is contact other serious prospects to prompt them. And we make no apologies for this, as our job is to get our seller the best result possible. Once you’ve made your offer we recommend you keep the negotiation going at good pace to reach a conclusion as soon as you can. Sleeping on a counter-offer can be the worst decision you ever make. And an old tip: never let someone else buy the home for a price you would have been prepared to pay!!

When a buyer and seller each recognise the position and needs of the other there will be the best outcome for both. It’s simple win-win negotiation. Sellers spend marketing money to promote their sale and build momentum, and taking it off the market for your contract is a real risk to them. Regardless of the type of market you should expect the agent to probe and check how serious you are, and what your prospects will be for confirming conditions. It’s what good agents do in protecting their clients.

Sellers need buyers and sometimes as the holder of the “gold” it can be tempting to push your position too far. Working respectfully with a seller and their agent can save you a lot of money.

Please share your experiences in buying or selling? Got a story of a successful negotiation? Or maybe one that didn’t go so well?!