There is no set limit or minimum to offer as a bid to purchase a property. Sellers have different reasons for selling. Some are more motivated than others so you may be able to negotiate an offer for 30% less than asking on one property, yet another Seller may not budge even $1,000 off the asking price.
Your first step in purchasing should be to find a Realtor who you feel comfortable working with and you can trust that he/she will represent your best interests as your Exclusive Buyer's Agent. An experienced Realtor will research comparable sales and give you an estimated opinion of what the property is really worth in this market. From there you and your Buyer's Agent will discuss buying strategies.
I often start an offer 30-40% below asking price, depending on the situation. If the house is already renovated and in a highly marketable location, there may not be much room for negotiation. Same goes for condos. If it is a long established building with a strong board, price will be condition dependent and of course also depend on Seller's financial/equity situation. There seem to be many condo short sale opportunities currently on the market.
If it is a great property in the location you like, you may not want to risk losing it to another higher bid. So in some circumstances you will be better off initially offering a number closer to your highest and best offer.
Please feel free to contact me directly if you would like the professional assistance of an experienced Realtor. I'd be happy to interview to be your Buyer's Agent. I'm sure I can help you find a great house or condo and negotiate a good deal for you.
Have a great day. I look forward to speaking with you soon.
All the best,
REALTOR, Property Manager
CEll: (267) 254-7994