4 tips to help you negotiate price like a professional


Unfortunately for buyers in most Australian cities, it always seems to be a seller’s market. This is why polishing your negotiating skills is so important if you’re looking to buy at a private sale. If you’re heading to auction, then preparation is your best tool.

1. Act like you’ve got nothing to lose

Whether you feel this way or not, you need to act as if the sale doesn’t mean that much to you. If you can think like this, you are more likely to stay cool-headed and remain in control.

2. Find their lowest price

Many sellers buffer their listing price, so finding their lowest price is not about being unfair, but more about finding the seller’s ‘true’ price. If you can maintain an attitude of indifference towards the property, you’ll be more confident in making what seems like a low offer. Have a look at similar properties that have recently sold in the area for a gauge.

3. Not alone? Act fast

Take note at the inspection of the level of interest among other buyers. If it seems like there are quite a few other serious buyers, you won’t have as much time to negotiate. If you think it’s going to be quite competitive, assess what is a comfortable amount for you to pay and make this your first offer.

4. Never reveal your ceiling

Be clear on how much you can afford before entering the negotiation and, even better, call us on 13 62 27 to get conditional approval for your home loan before you start. Don’t let the seller know your true maximum price – otherwise you might feel yourself pushed beyond what is comfortable. If the seller refuses your initial offer, make gradual increases, but never go beyond your limit.

If your bid is accepted

You will need to pay a holding deposit right away. Following that, you may need to sign a Contract Note and then begin the conveyancing process. The deposit functions as an act of good faith by the buyer and can amount to a couple of thousand up to 10% of the purchase price. Conveyancing is the formal transfer of property from one person to another and is usually done by a solicitor.

Be prepared

Call 13 62 27 to get conditional approval on your home loan so you’re ready and armed for your negotiations.

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Unless stated otherwise, this information has been prepared by Macquarie Bank Limited ABN 46 008 583 542 AFSL and Australian Credit Licence 237502 and does not take into account your objectives, financial situation or needs. You should consider whether it is appropriate for you. All applications are subject to Macquarie's standard credit approval criteria.