There’s more than the listing price to look at when buying a home. Other things are negotiable and can help make a house more affordable to buy.
Some costs are common for sellers to pay for as part of the process to negotiate a home sale, such as closing costs, repairs and some home improvements.
But there are more unique ways to negotiate for savings when buying a home, such as the following:
Cars, football tickets and personal belongings
Tickets to football games, and home furnishings that go beyond the couch and appliances can be incentives to buy. A refrigerator, washer and dryer set and other appliances may be included in a home sale, but if they’re not, ask for them.
Negotiate personal items outside of the home-purchase contract so that the personal property isn’t included in the home appraisal.
Always check the age of the appliances, especially the furnace, air conditioner and water heater. If an appliance is old or close to dying, ask for some money off the purchase price of the home so you can buy new appliances soon.
While touring a home, turn on the stove, air conditioner, heater, shower and faucets to make sure everything works.
If you’re buying in a buyer’s market, you may be able to negotiate for the seller to pay for a specific type of insurance you need, such as flood insurance.
Home warranties are another good thing to ask for, giving first-time homebuyers peace of mind if they don’t have much of an emergency fund left after buying a home.
Pay a credit card
Seller assistance in paying closings costs is a common request in home purchases, and sellers can ask for more than they might need for the actual closing costs.
After paying all loan and settlement costs, additional money in a home loan can be put toward a better home warranty, additional condo or homeowners association fees, or an advance to pay your local property taxes.
A VA loan is the only type of loan that allows such funds to be put toward the buyer’s credit card balance.
Remember that negotiating these things can be difficult if you’re in a seller’s market. But being in a buyer’s market of more supply than demand can give buyers more leverage. Local market conditions such as a home being on the market for more days than average, and fewer offers for a home, can also give buyers leverage. Use them to your advantage.