Get educated about the market, the comps, the background of the home itself, how much is owed, how long the property has been for sale and for how much, and it the property is priced aggressively to sell. Your realtor can provide guidance to you in these areas.
A short sale listing doesn't and shouldn' t automatically mean you should submit a lower offer than list price. Those who insist on lowball offers may encounter rejections more often than those who are realistic about market value.
Last week, I advised my client to write a higher offer than list because the value of the property, even as a short sale, seemed substantially higher. It's a good thing we did, because it received multiple offers, and we managed to squeak by a very tiny margin.
At times like this, it helps to have a professional on your side, looking out for you.