How To Make Lowball Offers
Without Offending Sellers
Experts say, few events can potentially upset a seller, like a lowball offer from a buyer. However, sometimes a seller can be so overpriced, that a lowball is your only option if you're going to buy. But, there are risk.
THE RISK of LOW-BALLING
While a blunt lowball may work in rare cases, they seldom do. They also carry the risk of shutting down negotiations entirely. Because a seller may get so offended, they never want to hear from you again.
- VIDEO - Seller NOT-OKAY with Lowball
However, not all sellers are offended by lowball offers. More seasoned sellers might consider a lowball simply a starting point for negotiation.
- VIDEO - Seller Okay with a Lowball
Regardless of who you're buying from, or whether you're buying antiques, homes, or vintage collectibles. Experts recommend using strategies that will help soften the blow, to lower the risk of offending a seller.
LOWERING the RISK
One of those strategies involves preparing a seller for a low offer in advance, before you ever make the offer. And doing so without pressuring the seller in any way.
How is that possible? Brandon Turner, from BiggerPockets does an excellent job explaining the process, using several examples in the video below.
Situations where a seller overpriced their item, or they want you to take risk, without being able to verify the items authenticity, value, or extra cost (restoration, repairs, etc.). Can actually be ideal situations for a low offer.
Why? Generally people are fair, and often a seller is simply unaware of their items true value, extra cost, or the risk they're asking you to take on.
Because of this, a reasonable seller may be willing to lower their price substantially, if you're willing to take the time to educate them, in a thoughtful and positive way.
Strategies used by price negotiation experts, often appeal to a sellers sense of fairness, to negotiate better prices. The following steps may help you with the process.
THE 12 STEPS
1. KNOW PRICES - Always research recent sold prices of items before making an offer. This is key to smart negotiations and knowing if you're getting a good deal. This free tool can help you research prices.
- Tool - Research Sold Prices
2. BE FRIENDLY - Your best possible results will always come from keeping your interactions respectful and friendly with sellers. This video demonstrates how you can keep the negotiation positive, and working in your favor.
- Video - Be a Friendly Haggler
3. KNOW HIDDEN COST - Extra cost are often involved in a purchase. For example, professional services required for authentication, repairs, restoration, or the reselling of an item, can quickly add up. Knowing those cost in detail, then sharing them with a seller, can be an important step in educating the seller, and negotiating a good deal.
4. MARGIN OF ERROR - Keep in mind a fair margin of error, whenever buying items with repair or resale cost. Because there will always be situations where repairs cost more than you estimated, or you may have to discount an items price more than expected, to resell it.
5. PREPARE PROOF - Anyone can blurt out a lowball price. However, if you take the time to find multiple examples of similar items sold for less, and share them with the seller. They may be more open to negotiating a better price with you.
6. COUNT YOUR TIME - Tracking your time as part of a purchase is important. If your buying an item that requires extra work on your part, you need to count that time as a bargaining point. The next step will explain why.
7. EXPLAIN THE OFFER - A seller, asking $500, may balk at a blunt offer of $200 with no explanation. However, if you can legitimately demonstrate how you might be able to resell it for $500, after investing $150 for parts, and 6 hours of your time. Your $200 offer may seem a lot more reasonable.
8. STUDY HAGGLING - Professional hagglers are experts at negotiating the best prices possible, in a wide variety of situations. We have a free article filled with step-by-step strategies, and video tutorials, created by some of the world's best hagglers, here.
- Video - Haggle like a Pawn Star
9. DON'T GAMBLE - If you're uncertain of the authenticity and/or value of an item. And, there isn't time to make an informed decision by getting advice from a reputable, third-party expert. A low offer, if you make one at all, would be completely justified. However, that offer should never be more than you're willing to lose.
10. WALK AWAY - If a seller's unwilling to meet your best price. Having the willingness to walk away and not look back, can be your best option for getting the deal you want. This video explains why it works so well.
- Video - Why Walking Away Has Power
11. BE FEARLESS - Buyers often avoid items that seem overpriced. However, if you're willing to give haggling a try, you may be surprised by the discounts you receive. This video demonstrates a real-life example.
- Video - From Overpriced to 70% Off
12. USE A HIGHER AUTHORITY - Sometimes it helps if you're buying on behalf of someone. This video shows why it can help you negotiate a better deal.
- Video - The 'Higher Authority' Strategy
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