Skip to main
Go Back
Strata Logo

    10 Tips For Negotiating The Price Of A House

    From pre-approvals to playing it cool, here's how to navigate the art of a real estate deal

    Written By Robert Van Rhijn

    So, you've found your dream home — the one that checks all the boxes and maybe even has that perfect nook for your collection of vintage comic books. But Toronto's real estate market can be especially competitive and fast-paced. Homes here often receive multiple offers, and bidding wars are not uncommon.

    To negotiate effectively in Toronto, you need to understand the nuances of the local market and be ready to act quickly.

    That’s why we have 10 tips to help you navigate the art of the deal like a pro!

    1. Do Your Homework

    First things first, know the market. Research similar homes in the area to get a sense of what's fair. Sites like Strata have tons of historical data and price trends in the neighbourhood. And as they say, knowledge is power.

    In this case, it can save you some serious cash. So definitely check out recent sales for comparable homes as well as active listings.

    2. Get Pre-Approved

    Showing the seller you're serious about buying can work in your favour. Getting pre-approved for a mortgage not only speeds up the process, but also makes you a more attractive buyer whom sellers can take seriously. Plus, knowing how much you can realistically afford is important when negotiating.

    3. Hire a Rockstar Agent

    A savvy relator can be your secret weapon. They know the ins and outs of the market and can offer invaluable advice. They also do the heavy lifting in negotiations, which means less stress for you. Find someone who knows the area well and has a track record of successful deals.

    4. Play It Cool

    Don’t let your excitement show too much. If the seller senses you’re head-over-heels for the property, they might hold firm on the price or even try to start a bidding war. Keep your poker face on, and let your agent do the talking.

    But if you do end up in a multiple-offer situation, remember that even though bidding wars can be intense, they're not unwinnable. To come out on top, first know your limits. Decide your maximum price beforehand and stick to it.

    If you can’t compete on price alone, consider sweetening the deal with other perks. Offer a larger deposit, flexible closing dates, or a personalized letter explaining why you love the home.

    And of course, lean on your agent. A seasoned realtor will have experience with multiple offers, and can offer strategies tailored to the specific situation. Trust their advice and expertise.

    5. Ask For Extras

    When negotiating, it’s not just about the price. Sellers might be willing to throw in extras like appliances, furniture, or even covering closing costs. This is especially true in a buyer’s market.

    6. Be Ready to Walk Away

    Look, we know this might be your dream home. But one of the most powerful negotiation tactics is being prepared to walk away. If the price isn’t right, don’t be afraid to step back. There are always other homes out there, and this approach can sometimes make the seller more willing to meet your terms.

    7. Timing is Everything

    Consider the timing of your offer. If the house has been on the market for a while, the seller may be more eager to negotiate. On the flip side, jumping the queue and making an offer that’s too good to refuse can work too. Don’t be afraid to ask your realtor which timing strategy is best.

    8. Inspect and Reflect

    Before putting in an offer, get a thorough home inspection. If the inspection reveals issues, you have a perfect reason to negotiate the price. Use the inspection results to your advantage to get a lower price or request repairs.

    9. Be Polite and Professional

    Keep the negotiation process respectful and professional. A positive relationship with the seller can sometimes lead to a better outcome. Being polite and understanding can go a long way in reaching a mutually beneficial agreement.

    10. Stay Within Your Budget

    Most importantly, stick to your budget. It’s easy to get caught up in the excitement and stretch your finances too thin. Remember, real estate is a significant investment beyond just the purchase price. There are closing costs, land transfer taxes and legal fees. So no matter how perfect that home is, it shouldn’t come at the cost of your financial well-being.

    Starting your search for a new home? Click on any of these links to access active listings, sold listings or contact a Strata agent.

    For any questions about this article or media inquires, please email