Make sure your agent can negotiate
Because buyers know they have the upper hand in the residential property market at the moment, many are making offers that seem ridiculously low to sellers and their agents.

“However, in most cases – especially if the buyers are not first-timers - these offers are really only intended to be opening gambits in a negotiation, and expected to draw counter-offers from the sellers,” says Berry Everitt, CEO of the Chas Everitt International property group.

“This is why it is critical now for sellers to work with an agent that will submit all genuine offers to purchase – no matter what he or she may personally think of those offers – and can properly assist them to negotiate with the buyer.”

Sellers often regard low offers as personally insulting and may even blame the estate agent – which is why a lot of agents will actually refuse to even write offers they think their clients won’t like, he notes.

”But it is still up to the property owner to accept, counter or reject an offer – not the agent – and in the current climate, sellers need to know that even a low offer is better than total lack of interest, because it at least has the potential for negotiation and a satisfactory outcome.”

Writing in the Property Signposts newsletter, Everitt says home sellers also need to know that, given the fact that the market is still oversupplied, buyers who are ready to make a commitment now will most likely just move right on to the next property if their first bid is flatly rejected. They will not try again with a better offer.

“Consequently, home sellers must be especially sure now that the agent to whom they give their mandate has superb negotiating skills as well as excellent marketing capabilities.

“After all, it’s no good hooking buyers unless you can also skilfully land them.”

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