Negotiation not Obduration

March 2, 2023

We highlight what it takes to put together property deals in 2023.

With the property market now working in favour of buyers, negotiation between parties has suddenly become very important. Through the pandemic and its aftermath full and over-price offers were the order of the day. Frankly, it often wasn’t hard to do a deal then, but now the pendulum has swung the other way. Unfortunately, many sellers across the country haven’t quite got this message yet.  That is why, with many more buyers coming to the market, there are not as many people moving as there could be.

Four things make a positive negotiation: a good attitude, flexibility, pragmatism and being seen to be reasonable. We need look no further than the recent political negotiations concerning Northern Ireland to show how previous talks broke down, when lately there has been far more progress.

As Winston Churchill said, “You cannot reason with a tiger when your head is in its mouth”. If one side is bitter and angry and the other aggressive and intransigent, there is little room for an understanding between parties. Indeed, a lot of principle taking and digging in of heels seldom gets anyone anywhere. But an acceptable deal is far more achievable with goodwill on both sides, a clear view of what may be possible, and a sympathetic attitude to the other party’s issues. Remember, the best deals are those where both parties feel they have won, or at least haven’t lost.

A good estate agent understands all these nuances and orchestrates the negotiation, smoothing out the inevitable ups and downs during an important and tense time.

Today, if you are about to sell your property, the first thing you need is a great negotiator. So, do your homework. Speak to a few estate agents and ask them to give you an example of how they conducted a recent complex sale. Don’t be embarrassed to ask. What is at stake is an excellent outcome. Having a deal maker on your side, and not an order taker, is vital. Ask yourself what is more important, a cheap estate agent or a great result?

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