(Well, excuse us! We’re just embarking on what will be the largest and most important purchase of our entire lives.)
Still, it’s good to keep those agents on your side – it means they’re more likely to go into bat for you when it comes to negotiations with the seller. The less annoying you are, the more likely they are to back your offer.
Here are the rules, according to real estate agents that spoke to CBC News and Angel Oak Homeloans.
1. It’s not about winning.
Buying a home is a huge financial commitment and sure, you want the best deal possible, right? But how far are you willing to take the negotiation? Are you happy to risk your chance of owning an amazing home by trying to argue with the agent and seller over every dollar? The “win” is the home that you can call your own – not necessarily the final price tag.
2. Open your mind.
Agents hate it when you are so stuck on one type of home or location that you won’t even consider anything else. It’s a recipe for disaster. If you’re too picky about the style of home and its location, then you’re unlikely to find a home for a very long time.
3. Don’t take anything personally.
Agents are trying to please both you and the seller. The seller is simply trying to sell their home. Competing potential buyers aren’t bidding to spite you. The world isn’t ‘against you’. Don’t approach the process of buying a home, as if you’re entering armed warfare. It’s best to try and stay ‘zen’ as you house hunt and make offers. What will be will be. You will end up in the home you were meant to have, living where you were meant to live.
Twenty somethings on buying property. Post continues below video.
4. If you snooze, you’ll lose.
If you find a home you like, jump on it or someone else will. Don’t keep waiting for something better to come along. Normally it won’t, especially in the current housing market. It’s so competitive out there, too competitive, so be ready to make decisions quickly and stick to them.
5. Respect the asking price.
A house went to auction on my street recently and was passed in. Then began a prolonged process of negotiation with buyers who thought they could get a better price after the auction. They ended up paying the asking price anyway. If a home has been valued, and is at a reasonable price, you do need to accept it. Endless counter-offers will just annoy your agent, making it more unlikely that they’ll go into bat for you. Listen to your agent’s advice on price and don’t go in too low or the seller may decide not to deal with you at all.