It's the largest purchase you'll ever make, so it makes sense to try and save money when buying your home. But many homebuyers fail to haggle effectively when they start looking for properties.
Here are some effective tips that can help you to get a serious discount on your home, which could mean saving thousands of pounds on the purchase price.
Firstly, sellers are more likely to accept your offer or choose you over another buyer if they like you.
Homes are very personal things. Sellers may have many happy memories of their time spent in the property, and as a result they may be more inclined to sell to someone who they like and who they think will care for the property.
It therefore won't do you any harm to dress smartly for the viewing and to compliment the seller on a lovely home. Don't go over the top, but do save any criticisms for later, and always be respectful of their property.
Find Faults in the Property
If you find problems with the property, you can use these to justify putting in a lower offer. You may be able to spot these yourself, so look out for problems during the viewing, which could include anything from a damp patch to problems with the paintwork.
This is also where a survey can be very useful. Use any problems your surveyor finds to negotiate a lower price, and then explain why your lower offer is reasonable.
Become a Detective
It never hurts to carry out some research into the property and the area before you make an offer. Start by finding similar properties in the area that have recently sold, and use them as a guide for how much you should pay.
The ideal question you want to ask is: why is this seller putting their home on the market? It's not always possible to find the answer, but it may be possible.
Are they expecting a baby? Getting divorced? Moving jobs? The quicker they need to move, the more room you have to negotiate.
Also find out how long the property has been on the market. If it has been on the market for a long time, this may indicate that the seller is more keen to sell, and therefore might accept a lower offer, which could give you more room to haggle.
Don't Start Too High
When you come to making an offer, don't start too high. If you start too high, you won't give yourself enough room to negotiate. So start lower than you are willing to pay, and go up from there.
But be careful not to annoy the seller. If you go too low, they may think you are wasting their time.
Remember that sellers are usually prepared to negotiate. Unless there is a lot of demand for a property, they will not expect buyers to offer the asking price, so don't be afraid to haggle.
Have a Mortgage in Principle
A mortgage in principle shows you are a serious buyer, and it makes you a more attractive buyer because there is less risk that something will go wrong if your offer is accepted.
Not being in a chain can also help. If you are in the situation where you are buying your first property, make the most of this. Make it clear that you are not involved in a chain, and use this to negotiate a better price.
Keep Emotions Out of It
This is easier said than done, but if you get emotional about a property and fall in love with it, this can cloud your negotiating judgement. It could lead you to make an offer that’s higher than it should be, so make sure you keep a cool head.
Get a Better Price on Your Property
Use these tactics to get a better price when you buy a home. There is usually room to negotiate, so don't just offer the asking price unless there is a lot of competition and you really want the property.
You could potentially save thousands of pounds on your purchase, so always look for ways to haggle.