The best strategy is to shop various neighborhoods and get the best prices from each builder. Than shorten that list and go on a 48 hour purchase program and let each builder you are looking for the best home and price and lot and that you are buying that weekend. Let them know that it is between their home and one other home. Do this during the week so the head of sales can be available to make a decision. They will want to compete to get your sale.
More than anything get a home that you like and enjoy it. That is a nice area!
"The Real Estate Doctor"
Priya, you've probably long since gone, but I'll post for the benefit of others. Most of the new home builders in the Tri Valley area require your agent to accompany you on the first visit or the Builders agent defaults to dual agency. Yes, that nice person in the builder's office is a realtor and the moment you fill out the "information card" you have waived independent representation and triggered dual agency; the builder is now your realtor.
This can be okay, if you know what you are getting into. I've visited all the new builds in the East Bay and the pricing policies vary. At Fallon Village they are pricing very aggressively and building very few homes on spec, so the there may not be much wiggle room. The other builds seem to still be practicing the ridiculous policy of listing the home for about 15% over what they are willing to sell it for and then giving you a bunch of discounts and credits towards upgrades, which ultimately get to the "real" price anyway.
I've called them on the BS with comps in hand and for the "real" price, which they usually will give. One example was a home listed for $960K, but had a 8% "Valentines" day discount, plus $40K in so called "upgrade credits". Skip the vastly overpriced upgrade credits and the "real" price is ~ $830K. And if you don't have a buyer's agent, make sure they give you back the 3% commission as a credit of the adjusted base price (or credit it for closing costs).
Also, do not forget the 1.75% property tax at Winderemere. Basing on my calculation, comparing with Gale Ranch (1.27% and $40 HOA), it translates to about 8% more to home price.
I suggest that you look at the list prices for homes in the neighborhood and offer below their asking price. I think Jennifer gave some examples.
I would not go above 800K for the house but then I am not personally in the market. You should make an offer that suits your conditions.
BTW, I heard from one of my friends who lives in windemere, that one of the builders initially refused a really low offer and a day later the builder's rep called back accepting that price. This may or may not be true and the conditions may be specific to the house (last one in the lot...) but it shows that you should make an offer that you like and wait for the builder to respond.
Good luck with your search.
From my past experience I can tell you than no builder has ever refused to negotiate with me for any one of my clients, NO MATTER THE MARKET CONDITIONS!
Hope this helps, good luck.
They're often more inclined to offer discounted or free incentives (like upgraded wood flooring, or free granite, a free dug-out basement or finished basement, maybe even a larger garage)... that way the listed purchase price, that the public will see, is the same, but most are not privy to what extras you purchased, and that can save the developers reputation with his other buyers.
When you have an agent you have a sounding board. Your agent works for you, to get you the best price. Your agent is not bound to share your comments or postion with the seller's agent.
Most builders have agents, so what does that tell you? On average the agents usually earn the builder more money. Builders do not look at seller's agents or buyer agents as an extra expense. When a builder gets a loan to buy the land and build the homes the commision has been built into the business model as an operating cost. Heck, if the builder failed to put this in his business plan to the bank it would be a red flag.
Even if they are running with all cash, they know that an agent will be that site 7 days a week, 12 hours a day answering phones, showing models, sending emails, writing contracts..etc.. What a no-brainer. He is out looking for his next land grab to do another deal.
Your job as a buyer is to know what the builder's finacial situation is at that moment. That is what determines how willing or able anybody is, a bulder, a private owner or you mom and dad are to sell at a price. That could change day to day. On Monday he could have a huge bank note comming due. So he will do anything to sell a home. On tuesday, a builders office building across town gets a cash contract, so now he his not in such a hurry.
> Don't over think it. No what your bottom line is, find out what the other side's bottom line is, then hash it out. Always be ready to walk away, really really walk away. Never invest more time or money before the deal is done that prevents you from being able to walk away... even if you have to limp away.
> Don't go it alone, it just reduces your bargining power. Anything you say to the sellers agent becomes fair game. The seller's agent's job is to get any information helpful to getting the highest price. For example, if you say "boy I would probably pay full price for this house" or "if they would agree to just put hard wood in the foyer they would have a deal"
Guess what? The sellers agent tells the builder, and they have good info to use to get you to close.
> Don't try to be the smartest person in the room. Builders may wear jeans, drive trucks and chew tabacco but they are shrewd business people. At the end of the day "you don't get what you ask for, you get what you negotiate.
Tell the builder that you are willing to negotiate yourself and not bring in an agent and he should knock of 3%, just like that?
I work as Real Estate agent in San Ramon area and well versed with the prices and inventory of homes.
You are welcome to call me at 925-997-3503 if interested to discuss your requirement. It will be my pleasure if I can help you with your home search.
Hope you're doing well. If you're interested in the Paloma community at Windemere, there is a Residence Two with pre-selected granite and flooring being offered at a great value ~ August move-in.
Please give me a call at (925) 984-7671 for more information.
We took a look at similar homes by Lennar today and are interested to know if you made any offer/deal and if you were able to negotiate. Also, we heard that the elementary close by hidden hills elementary is overflowing is on a lottery system. Do you have any infor on this and what the alternative schools might be.
The builders make decisions basd upon how that particular project is performing, as well as how the builder is doin in gneral. Lenar may be very flexible with one project and not on another.
Without someone with up-to-the-minute local knowledge, you might leave something on the table.
There is frequently greater flexibility in negotiating the extras vs. the base price. Your question that asks if 880000 is reasonable depends upon the market condiditons, and what is included in that base price. I wish I could be more helpful, and I do provide much detail in my answers where and when I can. Your question can really only be answered with the input of a local RE Pro who knows that development.
I am a Realtor in San Ramon and please be advised that Lennar is negotiating with their buyers and also paying for a Realtor to represent you.
If you do not have a Realtor representing you please get one. If you have already started the process with Lennar please allow for the brokerage fee in your negotiations. The builders many times they will negotiate the upgrades in lieu of a price reduction. Good luck.
Your milage may vary, but I have been told by buyers in my area (Philly) that it is near impossible to get builders down below a certain price point (the base asking price for a given model). They may, however, get creative with financing, offer to pay closing costs, offer free upgrades, etc. - all items that will not show up when anyone searches for the sale price of your home.
Remember, they have to sell more homes in that community and discounting yours, means that they just discounted everyone sold after yours (assuming the buyers do their homework). It also means that they have to answer to a lot of PO'd owners who bought just before you and were told that the base price is the lowest the homes would go for.
Enormous pressure on the builders may motivate them to drop the price, but I wouldn't count on it. Here, I am doing about 1 or 2 new construction inspections per week, so the market isn't as dry as many are being lead to believe. Granted, fewer are at the framing stage, so these deals were signed a while ago, but I still get framing inspections too, so there are new home buyers out there still.