In the ‘old days’, real estate negotiations were often a fairly simple process. The parties agreed to a price, identified items included in the sale, and determined when the property would change hands. These days, however, real estate negotiations can be extremely complicated. Not only are the parties negotiating on price, but they are working their way through several pages of contract items – all of which need thoughtful and careful consideration.

In today’s market, buyers and sellers need an extremely skilled negotiator on their side. While many people still believe that an agent’s primary duty is simply to show buyers houses or put a seller’s property on the market, that’s just the beginning of their job.

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Your agent needs to know how to read the subtle cues and telltale signs of what is required to close a deal. They need to know how to articulate your position to the other side in a way that fosters mutual acceptance. They need to be experienced in dealing with conflict, and how to calm emotions when they get in the way and threaten to derail a transaction.

The number one skill of being a good negotiator—a skill in which real estate agents should excel—is resolution. Your agent must be able to listen carefully to each side, find ways to resolve any objections that come up, and negotiate “win/win” solutions where both parties ultimately walk away satisfied that the transaction was done in fairness.

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If you’re a buyer, you absolutely need experience on your side when negotiating with nervous sellers, or with a bank or an asset manager who could live thousands of miles away.

If you are selling a home, hire an agent who is well-versed in your local market and can anticipate how buyers are structuring their offers.

Your agent needs a strong track record of experience in negotiating difficult transactions. The person you want on your side is someone who knows exactly how to negotiate effectively on your behalf and who knows how to successfully guide you in reaching your real estate goals.

Going it alone – or hiring an agent without the professional skills you need – is never in your best interest.

Want to know how I’ve handled some recent tough negotiations? Give me a call at (206) 391-1718 or email me at kristi@livingonbainbridgeisland.com and I’ll share with you the elements of a true “win/win” transaction, based on my own experience.

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