How Much Room for Negotiation is there when Buying a Los Angeles Home?

It is only human nature to want a deal, right?  But when buying a Los Angeles home in this present sellers’ market, I wouldn’t hold my breath looking for one.

A home is not going to sell if it is overpriced and with the shortage of inventory in the market, if a good real estate agent is involved, then it will be priced close to current comparables.  That means homes that are similar in size, condition, neighborhood, etc. which have recently sold.

When making an offer on a home you like your Los Angeles real estate agent will advise you on the best course of action.  They will be in touch with the listing agent and will have a feel for the competition on that home.  In this crazy market it would be wise to listen.

There are probably going to be others offering on the home, and although it is not allowed to divulge the details of other offers the listing agent will probably provide an idea of how close those offers are to asking.  In any event, once you know other buyers are interested in “your” home you will want to come in with as close to your best offer as possible and give yourself some wiggle room.  This is not the time to come in low.  It is almost guaranteed that other offers will be at asking or over.

Do not make the mistake of thinking that the listing agent is just telling your agent that there are other offers just to get you to raise yours.  That is “illegal” and when a counter offer comes it will be in the form of a Multiple Counter, meaning that other buyers are also being countered.

Now you will be making use of that wiggle room to come up with your best offer if you do indeed receive a multiple counter offer. (Presenting a low offer in thebeginning will probably not get you a counter.)  The counter offer will often ask for “highest and best”, but sometimes will suggest a price.  This will probably be your last chance, so if you really want the home, then you will need to pull out all the stops.

Also, don’t think that if you are the successful bidder you can somehow get money back during escrow, there will probably be other buyers in backup position who would be happy to see you cancel.

When buying a Los Angeles home, there is plenty of room for negotiation.  Unfortunately, it is more likely to be up than down.

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