Home Buying in Medford>Question Details

Anthony, Home Buyer in Stoneham, MA

If a house is around 280k, what is the lowest one would offer without being insulting?

Asked by Anthony, Stoneham, MA Fri Apr 8, 2011

Offer on houses

Help the community by answering this question:


in the past 90 days 36 single family homes have sold in medford. the avg. list price was $357,044
the avg. sale price was $ 338,538. or 94.8% of asking price. 6 sold over asking price and several sold well below asking.
It all depends on the property if its priced to sell or has been lingering on the market at the same price. if you have looked at enough homes you should be able tob gauge what to offer. ask your buyer agents opinion and for a market analysis on the home.
good luck
1 vote Thank Flag Link Fri Apr 8, 2011
I prefer to ask, "at what price will the seller feel grateful?" That is the price that will close the deal. If the property can't handle that price find another property. There are very few one-of-a-kind properties in any town. There are many properties with uniqueness and desireability, but most properties are comparable, thus the term Comparable Sale. Use an experienced local pro to help you with value. They'll have the most current data, and will know properties that may not have been sold through the MLS.
Web Reference: http://www.capegroup.com
1 vote Thank Flag Link Fri Apr 8, 2011
If it were only that easy Anthony. More information about the property, seller and you would all go into the mix.

What you are willing to spend?, do you need money back towards closing costs?, if you are using FHA finacing, will the property qualify?, Is it a short sale, REO, Estate Sale? What does the Seller owe on it? are just a few things you can research to make a competitive offer.

The bottom line is... as long as you can justify the offer, you can't worry about how they react to it.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Fri Apr 8, 2011
Is it the price or the home you don't like? So will you pay less for a house you don't like or more for one you do like. Will you feel bad if you lose the house? My suggestion is to follow what your realtor suggests, if you don't like it, then go with your gut. You should have a good idea of values in the area based on other homes you have seen. It is always easier to get out of a deal than into one.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Jan 7, 2016
yes, I would like the house in Santa Maria area in California
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Dec 19, 2015
There is no hard and fast rule. I would ask your buyer's agent, if you have one, to do a CMA on the home and see what the numbers say it is worth. See what the competition is. Only you the buyer can determine what the home is worth to you. But if you don't want to insult the seller have some concrete numbers as to how you came up with the offer price.
Good luck.
Margie McShane
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Apr 10, 2011
A better way to look at this question isn't so much what would be "insulting" but what would let the seller know you are serious and they would want to continue to negotiate with you.

Your agent is your best source to give you the market pulse on the homes values, what homes are selling for. I've experienced buyers making offers 50% of asking and being completely ignored and the sellers not entertaining anything further negotiations from that buyer. I've seen buyers offer below asking on a home which was obviously priced for multiple offers and they loose out.

In the end the home is worth what a ready, willing and able buyer is willing to pay and the seller is willing to accept.
Web Reference: http://terrivellios.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Apr 8, 2011
Hi Anthony,

I wouldn't worry to much about "insulting" the seller. If you don't already have an agent feel free to contact me and I can do a free comparative market analysis for you to see what similar homes are going for in the area. Otherwise, offer what you think the home is worth and what you're willing to spend.

Please feel free to contact me night or day if you need any help. I live right in Stoneham so I'm very local to Medford.
Web Reference: http://www.kimsolio.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Apr 8, 2011
I agree with some of the others. Why worry about the sellers' feelings? You have your best interests in mind and want to buy a house for as little as possible. Put in an offer for whatever you want. If the sellers don't like it, then so what? You'll never know how far a price will come down if you don't make the offer. If they really want to sell, they'll counteroffer and how far they come down will give you an indication of how badly they need to sell. Go get 'em! Good luck!

Sharleen Davis
Real Estate Agent/Attorney
EXIT Premier Real Estate
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Apr 8, 2011
I find it amusing that people still use the phrase "insult the seller". That's purely a real estate professional expression. An offer is an offer. There shouldn't be "insult" fealt with the writing of or recieving of any offer. An offer on a property can encompas so many variables & buyers/sellers motivations can vary widely also.

At the end of the day no matter what the offer is it still takes a meeting of the minds of both the buyer & seller. What needs to be looked at is: the qualifications of the buyer & their ability to close the sale as well as the price and conditions of the offer and what properties of like type are selling for recently and in close geographic location. No one knows the motivation of the seller one day to the next or the specific motivations for the seller to be selling.

Sellers have to be able to take an objective look at the features of the property they are selling, the market conditions of where their property is and the reasoning for the offer (price, conditions) and how it relates. There is no cookie cutter answer to your question, you as a buyer need to make the strongest possible offer you can given the market conditions of where the property is, the features & condition of the property as well as what comparable properties are selling for and also the resuts of your due dilligence in researching the property.

There is no "insult" both parties need to look at the offer and decide if it's 1. acceptable, 2. not acceptable or 3. negotiable.

Hope that helps,
Web Reference: http://www.MedfordHouse.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Apr 8, 2011

There are so many missing factors that making a broad generalization wouldn't serve to benefit anyone. The homes condition and locatio are important factors as well as the sale prices for recently sold similar homes in your identified location.

Applying a 5, 10,15 % formula to arrive at a non-insulting number may only deminish the chance of the seller considering you as "serious" buyer. If the home is priced right, a reasonable offer may be $280,000 or something very close to it.

Keep in mind that most sellers in today's RE market don't expect to get a full price offer but if the feel they are being reasonable, a number too much lower will likely not gain you any favors. Our best advice is to forget about "magic numbers" and investigating and deal with real numbers that will validate your offer amount.

Hope this is helpful,

0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Apr 8, 2011
Who knows? And, more to the point, who cares?

I've seen some sellers who are grateful at an offer 30% under what they were initially asking. Unusual, but it does happen. And I've seen plenty of sellers who are insulted at an offer even 1% under the listing price; they already feel they're "giving their home away."

So, unless you're the Amazing Kreskin, there's no way to know.

But beyond that, you signed your question "Anthony." Unless that's a pseudonym for Amy Vanderbilt, it doesn't much matter if the seller is insulted. Let the seller be insulted at all the people who looked at the house and didn't make an offer at all. At least you're making an offer. Beyond that, the seller has 3 choices: (1) accept your offer; (2) counter your offer; or (3) reject your offer. If the seller accepts, you got precisely what you wanted. If the seller counters, you know you're in the ballpark. And if the seller rejects your offer, then the two of you were far enough apart that there was no deal that was going to be done that would have satisfied the both of you.

Finally, based on the phrasing of your question, there's an implication that a house priced at $280,000 is worth about $280,000. Untrue. Listing prices sometimes reflect the approximate worth of a property. Lots of times, they don't. Hypothetically, let's say the house is actually worth $240,000, based on the comps. But the seller is one of these folks who says, "If I get my price, I'm willing to sell." But you look at $280,000, decide to make an offer that "won't insult the seller," and offer $270,000. The seller counters at $274,000, and you accept. Congratulations! You just overpaid by $34,000.

The point is: Always start off by knowing what the house is actually worth. Then don't pay more than that. Probably offer less.

But, for gosh sakes, don't worry about insulting the seller.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Apr 8, 2011
Don Tepper, Real Estate Pro in Burke, VA
Review comps with your agent, recently sold similar properties in the immediate are, see what the data suggests as to a fair price--there areally are no set standards as to how much below list price to offer on any property--do keep in mind that if a property is listed on target for today's market, or slightly below, multiple offers may occur.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Apr 8, 2011
It is not a question one can answer without additional knowledge of the house, neighborhood, information about the seller and why they are selling and other houses that sold recently. A good buyer agent can assist you with this analysis and suggest a reasonable offer range.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Apr 8, 2011
Unfortunately there's no way to know a sellers response to an offer. Best idea is to have your buyer agent do a market analysis to see what a fair price is. Also, you need to determine how much you want the house, and would you be upset if you lost out over an amount you actually would have paid.
Jay Juliano re max leading edge
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Apr 8, 2011
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