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Negotiation in a Declining Market: Tips for Sellers and Buyers

A group of people signing a document related to the housing market in a living room.

The recent slowdown in the housing market has left many sellers feeling frustrated. After years of rapidly rising prices, they're now faced with a market where buyers are more hesitant to make offers. This can be a difficult situation to navigate, especially if you're expecting to sell your home for a high price.

The property market is a cyclical industry, and it's not uncommon for prices to decline from time to time. When this happens, it can be a challenging time for both buyers and sellers. Buyers have more leverage, as there are more properties on the market and sellers are more likely to be willing to negotiate. However, buyers still need to be prepared to act quickly, as other buyers may be interested in the same property.

Tips for Sellers

  • Set a realistic price from the outset. This is the most important thing you can do to ensure a successful sale. If your property is overpriced, it will likely sit on the market for a long time, and you may eventually have to sell it for less than you would have if you had priced it correctly from the start.

  • Find a real estate agent you trust and act on their advice. A good real estate agent will have a good understanding of the current market conditions and can help you set a realistic price for your property. They can also help you market your property effectively and negotiate with potential buyers.

  • Take extra care with presentation. When the market is in decline, presentation is more important than ever. Make sure your property is clean, well-maintained, and staged to show its best features.

  • Be prepared to negotiate. Buyers are likely to be more aggressive in their negotiations when the market is in decline. Be prepared to compromise on price and other terms in order to sell your property.

  • Don't be afraid to walk away. If you're not happy with the terms of an offer, don't be afraid to walk away. There are other buyers out there, and you don't want to sell your property for less than it's worth.

Tips for Buyers

  • Do your research. Before you start looking at properties, it's important to do your research and understand the current market conditions. This will help you to determine a realistic price range for the type of property you're looking for.

  • Be prepared to act quickly. Properties tend to sell more quickly in a declining market, so be prepared to act quickly if you find a property that you like.

  • Don't be afraid to negotiate. Sellers are more likely to be willing to negotiate in a declining market, so don't be afraid to ask for a lower price or other concessions.

  • Be prepared to compromise. You may not be able to get everything you want in a declining market, so be prepared to compromise on some things.


Negotiating in a declining market can be challenging, but it's not impossible. By following these tips, you can increase your chances of getting the best possible price for your property.

Additional Tips

  • Be patient. It may take longer to sell your property in a declining market, so be patient and don't get discouraged.

  • Stay positive. A positive attitude can go a long way in the negotiation process.

  • Trust your gut. If something doesn't feel right, don't be afraid to walk away.

Want to learn more? Talk to our brokers today!

DISCLAIMER: This article provides general information only and may not reflect the publisher’s opinion. None of the authors, the publisher or their employees are liable for any inaccuracies, errors or omissions in the publication or any change to information in the publication. This publication or any part of it may be reproduced only with the publisher’s prior permission. It was prepared without taking into account your objectives, financial situation or needs. Please consult your financial adviser, broker or accountant before acting on information in this publication.


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