You’ll probably never hear a listing agent ask a buyer’s agent, what’s the highest amount their client [the buyer] is willing to pay for a property. So why is it that some buyer’s agents think that it’s OK to ask listing agents how low their client [the seller] is willing to go on the price?
I don’t know of any good listing agents that would spill the beans anyway, why would they? When I became an Orlando Real Estate Agent, one of the first things I learned is that there are 3 things that you never reveal in a real estate negotiation…seller’s motivation, seller’s price, and the terms. It would be kind of like showing your cards to the other players at the table in a high-stakes poker game.
I guess you can’t blame buyers for wanting to feel out what the seller’s bottom line is before making an offer in writing. It’s mostly about saving time and effort. If the seller isn’t interested in accepting a lowball offer, then the buyer could save themselves the hassle of preparing a contract, pre-approval letter, etc. After that, the buyer then has to wait and see if it’s been accepted or not.
Although the seller’s “bottom line” as well as the buyer’s “best and final” is eventually revealed to each other, you can’t just skip the first part of the dance that we call negotiating. Sometimes I wish we could cut to the chase because it would save the realtor some time also.
So when a buyer’s agent asks me what my client’s bottom line is. I say “put your best and final offer in writing and I’ll present it to my client”, and that’s when the real negotiating begins.