ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Seven Magic Words to a Better Price

Updated on July 13, 2020
LarryDMiller profile image

Larry has bought and sold numerous properties and has learned a few things that help get a better deal, whichever side of the table he is on

Many years ago I attended a conference held by one of the masters of the real estate industry, Ron LeGrand. There is very little this guy hasn't done in the business and very little he doesn't know. I picked up quite a few bits of information that week, but one, in particular, has stuck with me over the years, and I've used quite often to my benefit.

High and Low Anchors

When you look to buy a property you will, many times, run into a high anchor. A high anchor is a price a seller knows is more than a property is worth. They do this with the idea of coming down some to give the buyer an impression that they got a good deal and also to discourage all but the most confident from coming in with a low-ball offer. It is a negotiators mental game. They take you from what you think is a reasonable price and often suggest you split the difference... and you lose.

Conversely, often a buyer will come to a seller with a low anchor – a price that is obviously unreasonably low, but helps put the negotiation in a downward direction. Again, they don't necessarily expect to get the low price, but use it as a place to start and adjust the sellers thinking.

Other Factors

Obviously, there are other factors in negotiating a sale or purchase, and understanding these factors can only help you come to a more satisfactory outcome. For instance, when Pete Fortunato, another real estate wizard from Tampa Bay area, looks to buy a property, he will often ask the seller, “Why would you sell a beautiful house like this?” This gets people talking and often reveals the strength of their motivation and other needs that let you, the buyer, make a more informed offer that best meets those needs.


Sometimes you can get this information from an agent, but keep in mind that even the guy showing you the house is working for the seller – the one who pays them. Beyond that, there are some things the agent is not aware of, and they are trained to deflect some of these information gathering questions.

The Magic Words

The magic words work best when you are dealing face to face with the buyer or seller. When you are talking about price, which ever side of the table you are on, listen to the number thrown out. Think about it with no reaction and ask in a non-confrontational tone, “Is that the best you can do?” Then close your mouth.


The other party may try to justify the price as you listen quietly or will say they can take less if they are selling or pay more if they are buying, One of the largest drops, percentage wise, I got right off the bat was a probate condo that needed some work and the heirs were looking to get rid of. I knew what the asking price was because I saw it in their Craigslist ad. However, after looking the place over, I asked the lady about the price.


She told me they were asking $35,000. I paused and looked around the room and asked, “Is that the best you can do?” She thought for a moment and came back with, “we can take $30,000”. That was a 15% price drop just by asking one question... and the negotiations were off and running.


This works best when you are working with individuals, but variations can be used with agents, but with lesser impact. It's always worth a try, except when they try to get you into a bidding war with escalation clauses and other people bidding against you. If it's a place you really want to live in and are willing to pay top dollar – go for it. If it is an investment, you probably want to keep looking.

Other Uses

This magic phrase is not restricted to real estate negotiations. It can be used anytime you deal directly with a seller or even a business with variable prices,


Years ago I used to make several trips a year up and down the east coast on I-95. I would drive for a while until I felt myself getting too tired to go on safely. I would get off at one of the exits surrounded by hotels and motels. I would pick on of the mid-range to nicer places and ask the clerk about the price. Whatever they told me, I would ask, “Is that the best you can do?” and more times than not, they would give me a lower price, just for “wagging my tongue” as Ron would say.


There is nothing wrong with places like Motel 6 or Super 8, but don't expect to get much of a discount there. They just don't have that much room to adjust.

Biggest Takeaway

A lot of people are put off by the idea of negotiating a price – that is why many car dealers advertise a “no haggle” price. There are many skills involved in getting the absolute best price, whether you are buying or selling. This is a good place to start and the worst that will happen is you will be told, like I often told realtors, “That IS my highest and best price.” No one has smacked me upside the head yet.


As they used to say on the old TV commercial, “Try it, you'll like it.”

© 2020 Larry Miller

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://corp.maven.io/privacy-policy

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
    ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)