When you’re house hunting, one of the most important things to consider is the price. It’s essential to be realistic about what you can afford and to negotiate a fair price with the seller. But many home-buyers don’t know how to negotiate or even where to start, leading them to pay more than they should.

If you’re looking to buy a property and want the best price possible, here are a few tips to help you negotiate the best price on your new home.

1. Do Your Research

One of the best ways to prepare for negotiation is to do your research. This means knowing what comparable properties in the area have sold for and the current market conditions. This will give you a good starting point for negotiation and help you determine a realistic price. Start your research online, and then talk to a local real estate agent to better understand the market.

You should also be aware of any repairs or renovations to be made to the property. This can impact the price you’re willing to pay and can also be used as leverage in negotiation. Your research should also include an inspection of the property to ensure no hidden problems could impact the price. Some home-buyers hire a professional inspector, but you can also do it yourself if you’re familiar with a home inspection.

2. Get Pre-approved For A Mortgage

Before starting a negotiation, getting pre-approved for a mortgage is essential. This will give you a better idea of how much you can afford to spend on a property and show the seller you’re serious about buying. When negotiating, you can use the pre-approval of your mortgage company as leverage to show the seller that you’re able to afford their asking price.

You should also be aware of any mortgage contingencies that could impact your ability to buy the property. For example, some mortgages require that the property be appraised at a particular value before the loan is approved. If the property doesn’t appraise for the required amount, you may have to renegotiate the price or walk away from the deal.

3. Make Your First Offer Low

When you’re ready to start negotiation, you must make your first offer low. This doesn’t mean you should lowball the seller, but you should start the negotiation below the asking price. Doing this leaves room for negotiation and increases the chances that you’ll get the property for a fair price. A good rule of thumb is to start the negotiation at about 10% below the asking price.

Depending on the market conditions and the seller’s motivation, you may be able to get away with a lower starting offer. However, in a hot market where homes sell quickly, you may need to start closer to the asking price. You’ll need your best judgment to determine where to start the negotiation.

4. Know Your Bottom Line

Because negotiation can be emotional, it’s essential to know your bottom line before you start. This is the maximum amount you’re willing to pay for the property. Once you reach your bottom line, you should be prepared to walk away from the deal if the seller isn’t ready to budge.

You can calculate your bottom line by considering the property’s price, any repairs or renovations needed, and your mortgage payments. It’s also important to factor in your own financial goals and objectives. For example, if you’re looking to buy a property as an investment, you may be willing to pay more than if you’re buying a property to live in.

5. Be Prepared To Walk Away

Finally, it’s essential to be prepared to walk away from the negotiation if you can’t reach an agreement with the seller. If the seller isn’t budging on the price and you’re not willing to pay more, it’s time to walk away. There are other properties out there, and it’s not worth overpaying for a property just because you’re emotionally attached to it.

If you’re not sure whether you should walk away or not, it’s always a good idea to consult with a real estate agent or financial advisor. They can help you make a decision based on your unique situation. Some situations may warrant paying more for a property, while others may not.

When you’re ready to start a negotiation, it’s essential to keep these tips in mind. By following these tips, you’ll be better positioned to get the property you want at a fair price. Always stay calm and be prepared to walk away from the negotiation if you can’t reach an agreement.