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How to negotiate a house price in the UK

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Now that you’ve found the perfect property that meets your needs, wants and budget, it’s time to make the next move and lock in the selling price. This is a crucial stage in the deal as both parties are looking out for maximum value. As a buyer, you’ll want to acquire a rewarding investment at a discount, while the seller wants to get the best price for their asset. This dynamic tussle between each side’s expectations and the flexibility to negotiate and reach a handshake at the end is what makes a deal successful. However, to proceed with a good negotiation, prior preparedness is needed, for which your estate agent is there to help you.

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Factors to consider when making an offer

Execute the offer

While your estate agent will support you with an unbiased opinion and helps execute the offer, you have to decide if the asking price is worth the asset or if you feel there are adequate reasons to negotiate for a fairer price. Transparency with your agent regarding your financial preparedness and expectations is the best way to move forward. Another way to gauge whether you have an upper hand is to understand if it’s a buyers’ or sellers’ market and how keen the seller is to get the property sold.

Your estate agent would have already informed you about the prices of similar properties in the area, so you have a fair understanding of the immediate and long-term value of your investment. Also, you will be informed about how long the property has been on the market to know if an offer is good to go or if there is room for a better bargain. Time is another ally when negotiating the property price and other terms. If the seller is convinced of your financial and overall preparedness to fast-track the deal, you may also get the property on your terms.

Common tactics used while negotiating

Common tactics used while negotiating

Negotiations in the UK are done respectfully through fair and justifiable dialogue. Whether it is a 5 to 10% discount or slightly more, you have to be realistic about what is a fair price and explain why you need it. There could be pending maintenance bills or repair work before you or a tenant moves into the new house. These factors are probable grounds for negotiating the price. A good rapport with your agent will help you make the right offer and cover most of your interests in securing the deal.

Dealing with counteroffers

Dealing with counteroffers

It is very likely that after you’ve made an offer explaining the grounds for seeking a discount, the seller puts in a counteroffer by reducing a portion of the earlier ask or offering more value for the same price, such as a parking space or any other add-on service. It is also possible that the seller accepts your offer on condition of a larger deposit. The possibilities of a counteroffer may not be limited to only the cash value but many other factors affecting the sale. While Your agent will advise you on making the right offer, they will also tell you whether a counteroffer is worth moving ahead with.

At Benham & Reeves, we have a legacy of over sixty years of negotiating the best property deals for our clients from all over the world seeking exclusive and rewarding investments in the UK. With 21 branches across London and 14 international offices, we have the expertise to deliver more than just property buying and selling assistance. Our suite of lettings services can help make your investment successful by leveraging the robust rental market and taking care of all tenancy requirements.

So, whether you’re looking for an expert negotiator to help with buying a new property or selling an existing one, or if you need a trusted partner to secure, maintain and generate earnings from your properties in London, contact us today.


About the Author

Established in 1958, Benham and Reeves is one of London’s oldest, independently owned property lettings and sales agents.  With specialism in residential sales, corporate lettings and property management in prime areas of London, the company operates from 21 prominently located branches and 15 international offices.