Tips for Making an Offer on a Home Below Asking Price

When you and your family decide to buy a home in Elizabeth, New Jersey, you will have a lot of choices to make and factors to consider. Figuring out things like the number of bedrooms and bathrooms you will need, how much square footage is appropriate for your family, the area of the city in which you want to live, the amenities you would prefer the home to have, what proximity to schools, work, and grocery stores is best, and (most importantly) the price you are willing to pay. 

The asking price a seller wants and the amount of money a buyer can afford for the home may be two completely different numbers. There is a delicate balance that must be found between the buyer and seller when it comes to price to ensure that both parties are satisfied with the deal that is made. An asking price that is too high will likely drive buyers away from a home, but an offer that is too low may feel like an insult to the seller, especially if there is more than one offer in play. 

As a potential home buyer, you know what your budget is (or you certainly should know), but this is not always easy to stick to when you find a home that is perfect for you and your family. When you have an experienced real estate agent such as ours at Century 21 Real Estate Group working for you, it may be easier to put in an offer on a home that is below the asking price but will not be laughable or insulting. You need to be competitive with your offer, especially if there is already interest from other potential buyers on the same home. The key is figuring out how to make an offer on a home that is below the asking price, given the particular housing market at the time of your offer.

How Low Is Too Low?

As with many aspects of the real estate industry, the amount below the asking price that you can offer depends on the market at the time of the sale. If the market favors sellers at that moment, you may have to make an offer that is actually (well) above the asking price to even be considered. The seller, or the realtor representing the seller, will know what the house is worth and is unlikely to accept anything below the asking price, especially if there are other offers to be considered. 

If, however, the market favors buyers at that moment, you may be able to start with an offer that starts approximately 10% below the asking price. It all depends on the demand for houses at any given moment. Sellers want to get the most out of their homes, and when the demand among buyers is high, the sellers have no reason to take offers below the asking price. 

Additionally, the offer you ultimately submit will largely depend on the condition of the home. In the extreme, for example, when the home needs serious structural repairs or if it has been on the market for several months with no interest, you may be able to make a reasonable offer that is more than 20% below the asking price. However, if the seller has multiple offers, anything within the 1%-5% below the asking price range may still be too low. Our realtors at the Century 21 Real Estate Group in Elizabeth, New Jersey, can advise you on their recommendation for what your best offer to make would be and why a particular amount is too low to be successful.

Tips for Making a Low Offer on a Home

If you are planning to make an offer on a home that is below the asking price, here are some real estate tips to help you have the best possible chance for a successful home buying process in New Jersey:

  • Add non-monetary benefits to your offer to make it more attractive
    • Removing unwanted items from the house for the seller
    • Allow the residents to stay a bit longer in the home rent-free while they move
  • Be flexible with closing dates
  • Waiving home inspection contingencies or shortening the time frame to complete them
  • Increase your down payment
  • Pay in cash
  • Research comparable homes (comps) to find out what a reasonable low offer would be 
  • Find out why the seller may be firm in the asking price – if there is a high mortgage still outstanding, the seller will be unlikely to take a low offer
  • Hire an experienced real estate agent


Making a low offer on a home takes finesse and can be a challenge without the right experience and knowledge of the housing market. When you are thinking of buying a home and want to make a low offer, consider first contacting our professional real estate agents at the Century 21 Real Estate Group for advice and assistance in buying the home of your dreams.

Contact Our Elizabeth, New Jersey, Real Estate Agents

Buying a home is an exciting and nerve-wracking experience, but having an experienced realtor by your side guiding you and your family through the process can remove much of the stress and anxiety. When you have found a home and want to put in an offer that is below the asking price, you should contact our real estate agents at the Century 21 Real Estate Group to review your offer and help you negotiate the terms. 

Our team has the knowledge and experience in the New Jersey housing market that will be invaluable to your home buying process. When you do not have the right guidance and assistance from effective professionals in the real estate industry, you may find yourself with lots of questions, a declined low offer, and potentially a bad deal on the table. We know how to deal with governmental requirements, mortgage requirements, and your personal preferences to find you a home, put in a reasonable offer, and close the deal. Contact us today at  (908) 322-2901 for more information and find out why we guarantee 100% customer satisfaction.