Posted to Boston.com forum

Very interesting discussion, but don’t forget some real estate agents represent buyers, and you may be surprised how far below asking prices offers are being submitted these days.

It is TRUE that an offer we submitted yesterday was the ONLY offer a seller had received in nearly six months. I just wish our buyer had waited one more day until the listing EXPIRED. Then they could have approached the seller with an offer 5% to 6% less than their last asking price and they would have netted the same profit.

For nearly a month, we’ve been running a survey on our blog (RealEstateCafe.blogs.com). We plan to release the results soon, but if anyone would like to “graph” where housing prices will be in Greater Boston between now and 2010, we’d love to include your opinion. (All results are confidential, and unlike this forum, we don’t even ask for any kind of user name or email address.)

We also have collected lots of MLS data substantiating downward trends, but markets can correct themselves and some in the industry will look to spin that as a “bounce back” this Spring. As another recent post stated, sellers are getting pressure from listing agents to adjust their price expectations so there could be some interesting homebuying opportunities BEFORE the Spring market starts, and then again after the 4th of July and after Halloween.

Rather than using standard offer forms, buyers should put some creative thought into how to present their own powerful arguments, mapping MLS data where it supports your price and attaching it to your offer. But don’t trust a listing agents to present that kind of hard hitting data, it’s not their job (even if, as one recent poster correctly wrote, price trends over the past six months have been quite different from the 1st six months of 2005).

The trick is getting those facts in front of a seller who is willing to listen to your arguments and accept your offer, rather than risking a more uncertain market in coming months. Forums like this can help you build the case for the price you offer, so keep the highly intelligent debate going. Collectively, the depth and breath of arguments can really help buyers maximize their negotiating positions in a falling market.

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