Home Buying in Philadelphia>Question Details

Fatima, Both Buyer and Seller in Philadelphia, PA

I am interested in a property and have been preapproved for a mortgage. The realtor I am using is a friend of

Asked by Fatima, Philadelphia, PA Wed Mar 26, 2008

a coworker. She seems nice enough, but when I expressed to her that we ask the listing agent about accepting a lower offer than the listed price, she responded that the price was already low for that area. I told her that I had looked at comparable homes/sales in that area that were for slightly more than this house which is at the very least a fixer-upper. This house needs more than tlc. It is a total rehab, especially on the first floor. Can the price be negotiated before a formal offer is made?

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You control the bid or offer. Your agent can guide you, and should run more comps in the area to support her opinion. If you are not happy with the answers she gives you may want to interview more agents (if you haven't signed an exlusive agency contract) and see what answers and opinions they give on the price.

You may find that another agent is giving you the answers you need, or supporting the answers that may not necessarily agree with yours.

In any event, you and you alone control the offering price and if the agent will not agree, you need to probably look elsewhere because that agent wouldn't be serving you in your best interest!

Good Luck,
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Apr 17, 2008
To answer your specific question: Yes. The price can be negotiated before a formal offer is made.

Further, you can make any offer you want. And it's the duty of your agent (or the agent you're using) to present all offers, unless the seller has specifically requested that certain offers not be presented. So, if the house is for sale for, say, $300,000 and the owner has specifically said, "Don't present me any offers below $275,000," then an offer of $274,000 does not have to be presented. But if the seller hasn't specifically made that direction, then all offers, regardless of how low, should be presented.

Further, it sounds as if you've done enough research to have come up with what you consider to be a reasonable offer for the property. If you want to continue working with the friend of a coworker, then you might explain to the agent your rationale for the offer. And perhaps the Realtor has some information that you don't. But, in any case, you're the boss. The agent is literally that, your agent. You do your research, you receive (hopefully) informed input from a real estate professional, but, ultimately, it's your decision what you want to offer.

Hope that helps.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Apr 17, 2008
Don Tepper, Real Estate Pro in Fairfax, VA
Your realtor should present all reasonable offers to the seller. Its not up to the agent to determine that your offer is to low unless its unreasonable. The seller will accept, reject or counter accordingly. You are doing the right things complete your own research and be comfortable with the deal. This makes you a better buyer.

Good Luck!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Apr 17, 2008
Hi Everyone,

Another answer to this question can be found at the link below. The question was duplicated and I'll be closing that other thread.

Best Wishes,

Emily Gibson
Customer Service Representative
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Mar 31, 2008
The real estate agent you are working with might be entirely right that the property is already low for the area , even if only slightly below, as you suggest. Sometimes, if the neighborhood is in high demand, the amount of work that needs done does not impact as much as you may think it would .
However, that does not mean that you can't make a lower offer. The seller can accept or reject your offer. IF they reject it , they will likely make a response that will indicate whether they are willling to negotiate at all on the price, or any of the terms --and you can then respond to that 'counter-offer'. MAke your offer in writing, with a substantial 'good faith deposit', so that the seller can see that you are a serious prospect.
Good Luck
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Mar 26, 2008
Dear Fatima,
The first thing to find ou is wether or not your fried of a friend is a Buyer's Agent and if they have that in your area or not. A good buyer's agent is required to follow your instructions and act in your best interest. Each market is different and each agent works differently. In our market we can call the other agent t work out a verbal offer sometimes to see if they are open to a lower offer. A good Listing agent though, will ask for offers to be put in writing to present to their clients. A listing agent in our market is REQUIRED to present all offers in writing to the Seller, so it may be in your best interest to put your lower offer in writing in order for the Listing agent to be REQUIRED to present your offer.
If you are not comfortable with your Realtor and don't trust what she is saying to you, it may be time to communicate that to her and see if you can either work it out, or find another realtor who you are more comfortable communicating these concerns with.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Mar 26, 2008
There are several pieces to your question that need clarification to give a good answer. 1) is the agent working for you as a buyers agent or is she a seller sub agent? That is an important piece of the puzzle. You need to have a written contract that spells out the terms of your rlationship If she is 'your' (buyers) agent.
looking forward to hearing from you soon
hope that helps
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Mar 26, 2008
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