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  • Writer's pictureDave Fuller

Tips for Negotiating the Purchase of Your Next Business or Commercial Property!

Jay reached out to me recently to purchase a property that wasn’t actually listed on the market. “Dave, can you set up a meeting with the property owner to see if they are interested in selling the property to me?” Within hours we had scheduled a meeting and Jay had started the process of negotiating a purchase.

Once you find a great possible investment, you may need a opportunity analyzer to set up your criteria (email me for yours). Working a deal that sets you up for success and future wealth is critical. Negotiating the deal is often thought to be something that happens organically. However, savvy investors know that there is considerable work that needs to be done for the successful completion of any deal.

Here are some best practices for negotiating the purchase of a commercial property or a business:

Prepare Thoroughly:

  • Before negotiations begin, conduct thorough research on the property or business, including its history, market value, potential income, and any issues or challenges it may have.

Understand Your Budget and Objectives:

  • This goes back to your opportunity analyzer, Define your budget constraints and investment objectives clearly. Knowing your financial limits and what you hope to achieve from the purchase will guide your negotiation strategy.

Build a Strong Team:

  • Work with professionals, including real estate agents who specialize in Commercial properties and businesses, lawyers, accountants, and appraisers, who have experience in commercial real estate transactions. Their expertise can be invaluable in negotiations.

Gather Information:

  • Obtain as much information as possible about the seller's motivations, the property's history, and any competing offers. Understanding the seller's perspective can help you tailor your negotiation strategy.

Determine Your Leverage:

  • Assess your bargaining power. Factors like market conditions, the property's condition, and your financial strength can influence your leverage in negotiations.

Set up an Initial Meeting with the seller if possible.

  • Whenever possible, try to set up an initial face-to-face meeting or through direct communication channels. Building a personal relationship with the seller can make negotiations smoother.

Identify Seller's Motivations:

  • Try to uncover the seller's motivations and pain points. Understanding their reasons for selling can help you tailor your offer and concessions to their needs.

Initial Offer:

  • Begin with a reasonable initial offer that takes into account your research and market conditions. An extremely lowball offer may be counterproductive.

Focus on Value, Not Just Price:

  • Negotiate based on the property's value, not just the asking price. Consider factors like potential income, property condition, and future value appreciation.

Be Patient:

  • Negotiations may take time, and it's essential to remain patient. Avoid rushing or making hasty decisions that could be detrimental to your interests.

Use Subjects Wisely:

  • Include contingencies in the purchase agreement that protect your interests, such as due diligence periods, financing contingencies, and inspection clauses.

Negotiate Terms and Conditions:

  • Apart from the purchase price, consider negotiating other terms and conditions, such as financing terms, closing date, seller financing, or leaseback agreements.

Leverage Inspection Reports:

  • If inspections reveal issues with the property, use this information as leverage to negotiate repairs or a reduction in the purchase price.


  • Be prepared to respond to counteroffers with a well-thought-out counterproposal. Each counteroffer should bring you closer to a mutually acceptable agreement.

Maintain Flexibility:

  • Be open to compromise and creative solutions. Sometimes, concessions in one area can lead to favorable terms in another.

Negotiate in Writing:

  • Formalize all agreements and concessions in writing as part of the contract for purchase and sale. This ensures clarity and helps prevent misunderstandings.

Seek Legal Advice:

  • Have your lawyer review all contracts and legal documents to protect your interests and ensure compliance with local regulations.

Stay Professional and Respectful:

  • Maintain professionalism and respect throughout the negotiation process. Building a positive rapport with the seller can lead to better outcomes.

Know Your Walk-Away Point:

  • Determine in advance the point at which you are willing to walk away from the deal if negotiations fail to meet your minimum requirements.

Finalize the Deal:

  • Once an agreement is reached, work diligently to finalize the deal, complete due diligence, secure financing, and meet all contractual obligations.

Jay is still in the process of negotiating his deal and I have no doubt that he will be successful or at a minimum come to terms with the value that he is prepared to offer. Having a framework for negotiations enables you as the investor to be successful and play ball with even the seasoned professionals who are at a point where they are selling their business or property. Negotiating a deal is both an art and a science and being prepared will help you when the right deal arises for you.

Dave Fuller, MBA is a Licensed Realtor with Team Powerhouse Realty and long time business author. Comments or questions about real estate investing? Email


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