By Jennie Runevitch

Is your house on the market or are you looking to buy? With mortgage rates on the way up, many people are rushing to buy and sell their homes. How do you come out ahead?

When it's time to sell your house, Martin Latz says, don't trust your instincts.

“The last thing you wanna do is put a price out there and within an hour of putting your house on the market, you've got a full price offer,”says Author Martin Latz.

Latz wrote gain the edge a book he wrote about his experiences as a professional negotiator.

“The first thing you want to do in any negotiation is get information,” Latz adds.

One place to get more information is

“Looking at real estate properties in the area and gauging their relative values to one another is one way to assure that you're not paying a price that's too far above market, too far above what other homes in the area are selling for,” says Greg McBride, analyst,

Second, realtor Vladimir Golik says, spruce up.

Golik says, “You want to have that property as fixed up, as clean, as cosmetically as possible. As a rule of thumb, buyers will pay more for a property they need to do less to. If they need to do more to it, they'll pay less.”

Also start listening to the feedback you get on the house.

Latz says, “Don't argue and try to persuade. Ask and listen. Negotiation power goes to those who ask and listen and get information, not those who try to go in to try to argue and persuade and convince the other side they're right.”

latz says, when you're shopping, never let on what your real feelings are. “You wanna go in, you wanna be interested, but you don't want to express too much interest because if you go into that house and in front of the other real estate agent and say i love this house, they have no incentive to move.”

Finally, Latz suggests, have a great alternative. “If you're selling your house, you're selling your car, you have one potential purchaser, don't take it off the market yet. You need to get several others. Hopefully you'll be in a situation where you can get them bidding in fact to purchase what you're trying to sell.

Martin Latz was once a negotiator for the White House Advance Teams, and now runs his own negotiation consulting company.