· Ask the listing agent why the seller is selling? If it's not a viable reason to sell, you might be wasting your time if you don't want to pay list price.
· Consider a lowball offer just to see how the seller responds. If the seller doesn't issue a counter offer, you will have your answer. Or, if the seller writes a full-price counter offer, the seller might want to negotiate further. Counter the seller's counter. Don't give up!
· Wait for another price reduction. Most agents ask for a price reduction after a certain number of days from listing inception such as after 30, 45 or 60 days on market. Check the cumulative days on market time.
· Try to find out other motivating factors. The seller might have concerns apart from pricing. It could be buyer possession, owner financing or a seller rent-back expectation.
· Ask about other offers. If the seller has turned down offers in the past, try to find out why and overcome the seller's objections to those offers. You might find out you would be pleased to offer slightly above those rejected offers.
· Your competition is more than likely completely clueless when it comes to all things pertaining to life, people, business, and diplomacy. They are approaching the prospective seller with a "what's in it for me?" attitude. When you show up actually concerned for the seller, asking him questions about his situation, questioning him as to how all those things are making him feel (which increases his motivation/desperation to sell, by the way), and what not, he will be naturally drawn to you.
Most people show up at the door with their memorized Carlton Sheets spiel and leave a bad taste in the seller's mouth. You need to not be one of these people.
Remember this - people make buying/selling decisions based on emotion. Not logic. They decide whom they are going to deal with because of how they FEEL. Then they do everything possible to drum up some type of logic to justify their already-made decision. And they do this no matter HOW illogical doing business with the likes of YOU scientifically IS.
So become likeable. You can do it. I believe in you!
Psalms 118:23 "This is the LORD's doing; it is marvelous in our eyes."