Need sharper negotiating skills?
Thinking about a real estate transaction, you negotiate with every party involved, right? Whether it’s for a cut in your fees (no!), time to close, a reduction in sales price or agreement on communication terms, it’s all a negotiation.
Why the discomfort?
It’s a mindset. And, it’s also cultural. To some, negotiating may seem rude. To others, when faced in a negotiation, it feels like one party wins, while the other looses.
Here are three strategies and four tips that will help you improve your negotiation skills and drive more bottom line revenue.
An effective tactic, the cringe is used to make the other party uncomfortable. The less experienced negotiator will either offer a big concession or will attempt to rationalize what’s been offered/requested.
As a rule, people often ask for more than they expect to get. Be steadfast. Don’t back down what you offer/counter offer.
While you don’t want to present yourself as harsh, severe or hostile, the more information you have on the other person’s situation, the better. Ask questions to discover what’s really important to them.
For example, if you’re in a listing presentation, you may ask:
- “Why are you considering selling?”
- “Which other agents will you be speaking to/have you spoken with?”
- “Is there a deadline or timeline driving this?”
It is also important to know as much about the agents with whom you compete. It could help you overcome using that agent as leverage.
Tip #1: Recognize Style
We each have our own communication style. The same holds true in negotiating. To be effective, you need to understand the negotiation style to that of the person on the other side of the table.
Who are you? Dominant decision maker? Influencer? Both are extroverted. While task oriented and those adverse to change adverse are more introverted.
Why is this important?
- A dominant negotiator must practice patience with the less extroverted.
- An influencer is not terribly detail oriented.
- Task oriented types need facts in negotiations.
- Change adverse folks need to understand why.
Tip #2: Practice
In real life – practice. Get in the habit of asking for discounts.
- “What’s the best you can do on this?”
- “That seems expensive.” (shhh, wait for them to respond to gauge an opportunity to negotiate)
- “What discounts are you offering today?”
- Don’t forget the Cringe!
Tip 3: Be Willing to Walk
It’s not easy to do this, when every transaction is so important. But somehow it gives you a confidence that will provide quite a bit of leverage in the negotiation process.
Tip #4: Listen
Listen with the goal of understanding, rather than to prepare a reply. And, make it a point to not only hear the words spoken, but observe the tone of voice, inflection and watch body language.
Photo Credit: © Andrew Cooper.