Seller won't budge

9 Replies

I'm working on my first purchase in SD, CA but it seems like sellers in this market are very stubborn. I placed an offer on a SFR listed at $400k. My offer was $390k and i asked for $6k for closing cost. They countered with $399k and $5k back. The house has been on the market for a few months (2 or 3) and the agent I'm working with says the house should appraise near $400k. I'm using a conventional loan with down payment assistance so I was told that my lender couldn't help with any type of closing costs. Do I have any other options other than raising my offer or walking away?

You are only $10k apart. There is no substantiative difference between where you are and they are from your end. So if you want the property buy it. If you don't want it then don't. Passing on a property you want though for such a small amount will come back to haunt you.

@Mauricio Salom

If you're financing, $10K do not make that much of a difference in your monthly mortgage.

What is your goal? buy to move in? 

How much work is needed? You might be able to ask for more seller credit if the home inspection comes back with items that you didn't expect. But be prepared for them to walk away.

Sellers are stubborn because

1. It is a seller's market

2. They probably priced it right

Originally posted by @Mauricio Salom :

I'm working on my first purchase in SD, CA but it seems like sellers in this market are very stubborn. I placed an offer on a SFR listed at $400k. My offer was $390k and i asked for $6k for closing cost. They countered with $399k and $5k back. The house has been on the market for a few months (2 or 3) and the agent I'm working with says the house should appraise near $400k. I'm using a conventional loan with down payment assistance so I was told that my lender couldn't help with any type of closing costs. Do I have any other options other than raising my offer or walking away?

 Don't get in your own way. $10,000 on a $400,000 purchase is an irrelevant sum of money. If you want the house just buy it. $10,000 on a 30 year mortgage is only about $70 per month.

Lower your offer :) THEN walk away.

You are obviously searching for a primary residence, Mauricio? Oh the skinny value world of agents and the MLS.

Next time offer an odd number like $381,462. At least appear like you did a detailed analysis. Large, round PFA offers with lots of zeros pretty much always get countered.

Yes I will be house hacking. The home is in good condition it's move in ready just a bit outdated so I don't see it being a huge rehab. I realize 10k won't really make a difference on my monthly mortgage I guess I just figured after 2 or 3 months on the market I wouldn't have to pay the full asking price.

Try 395k with 6k back. If seller really wants to sell it bad enough,  they'll work with you at least a little more.

Take the others advice. Don't let 10K stand in the way of a 400K house. If you wait too long, someone else may come in at full price. 

I've had deals where the seller countered with the original full asking price and I'd go a little higher on my offer (just a tad) and just go from there.

I've had deals where the seller countered with a slightly lower price and my counter offer would be the exact same as the first.

even if it's been on the market for 2-3 months, has the seller been aggressively dropping the price or has it been 400k for the duration? Once you understand the seller's motives you can revisit your offer strategy.

I've had it happen all ways. I have held on offers and someone else bought the property, I have held on offers and got my price, and I have held on offers and bought it for less later. It all depends on what your numbers look like and if you've got an upper line. If your upper lines are nebulous, then as stated $10k is peanuts. But if $390 was already your upper line, and it was arrived at judiciously (i.e. being over that line would be financially difficult), then you should not exceed the line. 

I have made final offers and been bested by a few thousand dollars. I'm not willing to accept returns below a certain level, so when I hit that line it's almost guaranteed I will not be crossing it. Most (but not all) of my offers, I end up settling at my number or less. I leave myself room so that I have somewhere to go to get to that "do not cross" line. If $390 was it for you, then you either needed to work with cheaper housing, wait it out, or accept that $390 wasn't your line and $399 is. 

My experience has been that most sellers come to me, and not the other way around, but that is specific to my market. 

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