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Columns : Let's Talk Real Estate - James Sarles Last Updated: Feb 6, 2017 - 2:32:04 PM

Negotiating Deals in This Market
Nov 30, 2008 - 4:46:30 PM

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Despite the current economic situtaion,  this is a good time to buy believe it or not, but the trick is in the successful contract negotiations. There are motivated sellers in this buyers market but selling price for a home or investment property is only one factor in determining whether the buyer and seller reach an agreement.  The sales contract (Purchase/Sale Agreement) has many facets that must be considered, understood and accepted by all.  An experienced broker is a solid advantage to both buyer and seller, because they have been through countless transactions and understand the principles of successful negotiations. At James Sarles Realty we have seen deals fall apart over very minor, petty issues and we have saved deals where parties have walked away from the closing table.  As the old say goes “It aint over till the fat lady sings”.  We don’t look at deal is done until the checks clear, you have keys in your hand and you move in the house.


The issue of price or consideration in your deal is only one aspect of the finances. The contract should specify who pays for stamp tax, legal fees, and real estate fees.  A typical gross offer or list price that you may see advertised implies that stamp tax is customarily split between buyer and seller, whereby each party pays for their own attorney fees and seller pays for the real estate fees. HOWEVER, any of these costs can be negotiated with either party paying any of the fees as the closing costs are NOT mandated by law.  Its real estate and its negotiable as long as it is clearly stated.  Sometimes the purchaser makes a net offer which means that the seller receives whatever is offered and the purchaser agrees to pay ALL closing costs including ALL legal fees for both parties, ALL real estate fees, and ALL Real Estate Fees.  In a net deal the percentages of the legal fees, the real estate fees and the government stamp tax are based on the Net price.


An important clause that is left out of many contracts is who pays for conversion fees. If a foreigner is purchasing property from a Bahamian or if a Bahamian is purchasing from a foreigner there is a conversion charge from US dollars to Bahamian dollars (.995) or Bahamian Dollars to US (1.0125) as Bahamians can’t accept or hold US dollars based on Exchange Control Regulations or purchase with US dollars.   There is no hard and fast rule of who should pay for these charges.  They can be paid by either party or split but MAKE SURE IT IS CLEAR WHO WILL PAY WHEN YOUR ARE NEGOTIATING THE DEAL!


A real estate professional will make sure that there are no surprises in the transaction and that all aspects of the deal are covered.  The team of a professional competent attorney, a professional competent real estate broker and a buyer who wants to buy and a seller who wants to sell makes for a smooth transaction.


If you have been thinking about getting in the market this may be your opportunity to buy that property at the right price with sellers who are motivated.


Good Luck with your negotiations.  Until next week.

Contact James at Coldwell Banker - James Sarles Realty  james@sarlesrealty.com

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Let's Talk Real Estate - James Sarles
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