Profile picture for mlbuddejr

Seller not budging on asking price, advice?

We made an offer on a home in the La Grange, IL area about two months ago and negotiations stopped when the seller took a stand $5k below his listed price (about $20k above our offer) so we walked away. We LOVE the house and made another offer recently, within $10k of his previous counter offer. The seller came back and didnt budge from his previous counter. We are very disappointed because he would not even work with us. I have so many questions! How common is it to pay asking price in this market, during this time of year, in this area...all the comps compare lower by $10-15k at least. Please make me feel better by telling me that walking away from this stubborn seller is the right move...
  • December 17 2011 - La Grange
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Answers (19)

Really? I can make you feel better by telling you to walk away from a house you love over $20,000?

OK. Walk away.

Before you do - ask yourself, "would we as soon buy one of the 'comps' that are $15K cheaper as this house at the asking price?"

All the best,
  • December 20 2011
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Profile picture for tonyashworth
The house is not worth what the seller thinks, or what an agent thinks...it is worth what a buyer is willing to pay! Be and patient, and see what happens...more times than not - the first offer a seller gets will be their best!

Even in this market a seller needs a wake-up call...

  • December 20 2011
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1) Ask seller's agent for the comps they used to support the price. Maybe you are missing some comps.
2) If you are concerned about the property appraising, insert a provision into the offer, "Subject to property appraising at or above purchase price," that way you will have peace of mind that the property will appraise.

  • December 20 2011
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Unless I am missing something -  asking for a "seller's concession" is certainly not a negotiating "trick', nor is it a novel approach...... It is done all the time , all over the country.

The seller isn't dumb...if he wants X amount.....he will know to subtract the concession figure to see what he will actually net!

If he wants full asking (minus commission) in his pocket - that "trick" won't work.
  • December 20 2011
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One negotiation trick I've used successfully in the past that you may want your agent to try: keep the seller happy at his asking price but ask him to pay your closing costs - as a percentage - up to the $5,000.  This will help with your having to pay less cash out of pocket at closing and he will be happy knowing he sold the property for what he was asking.  The secret to this approach is to write the "seller to pay non-recurring closing costs up to x.xx% of the purchase price".  Including a hard number such as $5,000 in the proposal doesn't work nearly as well.
  • December 20 2011
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The home will sell for what the market is willing to bear.  Maybe the Seller is not that interested in selling?
Ania
  • December 19 2011
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Profile picture for sryan1980

If his home is priced correctly, then expecting within $5,000 of asking price is not absurd, even in this market. He likely is under no pressure to sell, except for the obvious fact that he'd like to move.

  • December 19 2011
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Even though everyone is saying that it is a Buyer's Market the Seller still makes the final decision on whether they are going to sell their home or not.  If you are taking out a mortgage and the appraised amount of comparable homes are $10,000 to $15,000 below the Sellers asking price then chances are that the bank will not provide financing on this house.  If the Seller is not budging on his price it might be for financial reasons.  The Seller might owe that amount on the house and is not going to come to the closing table with money to close.  I would continue looking - there will probably another great home out there for you. 
  • December 19 2011
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Profile picture for Bert Pope
You obviously like this home. Please dont get caught up in the emotions of the negotiations. Stop worrying about what he is doing and buy that home.
Your realtor can guide you better, but as an outsider I suggest you give the purchase price and try to get, maybe some closing costs or warranties/ allowances.
Merry Christmas.
  • December 19 2011
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Its a buyers market, don't let a stubborn seller discourage you. If you really like the property go back and negotiate with the seller; otherwise, keep looking and a new opportunity will arise!
  • December 18 2011
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I have a few thoughts on this..........No one can "make you feel better" - you have to be confident that you're doing the right thing.....the right thing for YOU.

First of all, we have no idea what price range we are discussing.....you and the seller are now $10,000 apart.....that might not be such a huge difference (not to mention it translates to under $50 a month in your mortgage)....anyway - is the house in the 300's?? 400's? 500's?  600's??

The higher the number, the less significant the difference becomes, and the more difficult it is to include or exclude the number from what a "reasonable" range is.

Comps can only take you so far...every hmoe has its own nuances....for example....no one can definitely  say a home is "worth" 575,000 but not 585,000............A  1.75 percent differential is not that big, and "worth" can be a subjective word.

It comes down to what you want to pay,  and can pay.
It's your decison to make............the seller took a stance......right or wrong.....now you can make your decision.

Houses can sell at full asking price, even in this market. Some sellers are more  motivated than others, and more negotiable...,.some not so much. You have one of the latter types of sellers!

I wouldn't get hung up on whether the seller is "being fair" or if he is "stubborn".........look at what YOU want to do, and feel comfortable doing.

As was already  mentioned........the house must appraise out. If you go up that extra 10,000, and the house doesn't appraise out for that amount, make sure your contract allows you to  renegotiate and/or walk away.
At least the appraisal gives you a safety net, and since you're looking for encouragement here, that you're doing the right thing, the appraisal might give you that affirmation..

In summary - You have several options:
1. walk away
2. let your agent tell the seller your offer may be there if he changes his mind, but you will continue to look elsewhere with no obligation to resubmit
3. ask him to split the difference, and you go up $5000.........or
4. pay the additional 10,000 and buy the house

If you're going to lament about this........and coming to a real estate website asking if you're doing the right thing indicates you are agonizing about this........just know .there is no right or wrong answer...........if you love the house, can comfortably afford it,  and plan to live there for a long time......then buy it.
  • December 17 2011
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A home is worth what someone is willing to pay for it.  I just had a client who reviewed the offer on a home and determined that the $20/mo difference in payment monthly to come up $5000 in their offer was worth it to them since they loved the house.  

Buying a home is an emotional decision as much as a financial one.  Selling a home is both as well. If the seller knows how much you love the house, he may just be standing his ground assuming will come up to his price eventually.  Only you can determine if he is right!

Are there other homes like it in the area?  If his is updated? Maybe you can buy a fixer upper and update the parts about this home that you like...  

Also, be aware that once the offer is accepted, an appraiser still has to appraise the home.   If the comps/appraisal come in lower than the purchase price, the seller may have no choice but to lower the price.  The bank will only lend on the appraised value.  Just be sure you have an appraisal kickout in your contract, otherwise you may be obligated to pay the difference out of pocket.

Good luck in your search!
  • December 17 2011
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Apparently you  really liike the house.  If you have a realtor representing you, have him pull the comps.  If they are in line with what the seller is asking for, either raise your offer or start looking for another home.

  • December 17 2011
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Profile picture for Connie Klemme
it's very simple, if it's more than you want to pay and less than they want to take.   Walk away, if there really are more comps in the price range you want, and you aren't in a hurry, you'll find another house that fits both the price and your wants.  

The key is...make your offer based on what the house is worth to you.  If it's worth more,then offer more, if it's not, don't.    The seller has a bottom dollar they are willing to take and most likley will stick with that number too.  $20k is a big gap, they might actually be willing to come down a little but not show it with that big of a gap.  Walking is the best thing to do if that's the highest you're willing to go. 
  • December 17 2011
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Profile picture for kapyarets
The seller doesn't have to negotiate. He has asking price and this is what he wants.

If you love the house ask yourself : Will it matter in 5-10 years this money you want to negotiate? Will it change your monthly payments dramatically? Will you family happy in that house?
 
When you are buying your primary residence look in perspective and not in today ego.

If you can't afford the house, buy something else. 
  • December 17 2011
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Profile picture for the_country_hick
I made an offer on a house years ago. The seller refused to accept my offer. I never bought the house.

If the seller refuses a reasonable price they made a decision. Look elsewhere.
  • December 17 2011
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Profile picture for hpvanc
Walk, or see if they will accept a provision in the contract to cover your expenses if they can't or won't meet an appraisal price if it is lower, actually not a bad idea for a buyer in the current market anyway.  If you want the house if may be worth a shot, doesn't mean they will accept your shot.

Good luck.
  • December 17 2011
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Profile picture for Cindy Quinton
I know it sucks when you've fallen for a house, you're already decorating it in your mind. I'm looking also and fell for a house that sold before we could offer. So I get the disappointment. I agree with Wetdawgs, if you've really looked at it and that is all you believe the house is worth you shouldn't pay more. Unless....and this is a big if, you plan to stay a many, many years, and you truly don't believe anything similar might come available in the location you are want....sometimes that is worth a lot.But you have to weigh it out with "will I always resent this house since I paid too much?'
  • December 17 2011
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Profile picture for wetdawgs
I'm sorry to hear of this situation.  

Are you working with an agent?  It appears that you've worked through comps with him.her, which is great. 

It is possible the seller unrealistic, but, if they don't want to sell there is nothing you can do about it.   They may be cursing themselves in a year or two, but by then you'll be happily settled in another home.

You are making the right decision walking away, and next year you'll be laughing merrily when you hear they sold it for considerably less than your first offer.
  • December 17 2011
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