Is Someone Trying to Give You a Low Ball Offer? Don’t Sell Your Home for Less Than It’s Worth

For most people, buying or selling a home will be the most expensive transaction they will ever engage in. As a seller, the goal is to get the highest asking price possible. For the buyer, it’s to get the best house within the budget at the lowest possible amount the seller will accept. The intersection of both interests is the point that both parties can feel satisfied with their agreement.

The problem is, when a house is on the market, there’s no way of knowing if or when better offers will come in. There might be a contract offer below what the seller is comfortable with, but that seller has no guarantee that a better offer is forthcoming. So, unless there are multiple offers on the table simultaneously, it becomes a gamble as to whether the low ball offer should be considered. When selling your house, keep these tips in mind to get your best possible contract price:

1. Pricing Is Subjective

Pricing real estate is much more of an art than a science. The original asking price is often determined by comparing the property’s specifications to other similar properties currently on the market or those that have recently sold. The pricing is subjective for everyone involved. What one person may deem overpriced, someone else could call a steal.

Both parties are eager to keep or get as much money in their pockets at the end of the sale as possible. This can cause stress, anxiety, and tension. Go into the process understanding that a savvy buyer will attempt to get the lowest price possible. It’s fairly standard for a buyer’s representative to advise making an offer below the asking price. It is often expected that the seller will have leeway to reduce the price if there are no initial takers.

2. Negotiate All The Terms

If you’re disappointed with the low offer, consider another area in the contract that you can use to offset the lower selling price. Most real estate transactions include fees to agents or companies. Even partial percentages can result in thousands of dollars difference. Closing fees are frequently attributed to both parties, but there’s often flexibility for determining whose side of the balance sheet is actually debited with the expense. These are two of the areas that may offer some room to negotiate, resulting in a higher proceeds at the closing even if the offer on the property is less than its anticipated worth.

3. You Hold The Key

With every offer, you will have the option to accept, reject, or present a counteroffer. As it stands, it’s your house, and no one can force you to sell. Your circumstances may be adding pressure to be somewhere else by a certain time, clear a certain amount of proceeds, or off-load the property quickly but, ultimately, the decision is yours. If the buyers want the house, you are the gateway for making that a reality.

Above all, keep in mind that buyers can propose low-ball offers all they want, but you don’t have to accept them. Don’t take the offers personally. Keep the negotiations going as long as there is a willingness to work toward that mutual benefit equilibrium. After all, if you plan to reinvest your proceeds in your next property, it’s doubtful that you’ll be eager to offer the full listing price when you make that initial offer.