Banks/HUD/REO sellers have a "zone" for their acceptance - a target net figure. A few other factors play a part also- how long the house has been on the market, is their special financing (in house from a bank, HomePath, etc.) and is this a preferred owner occupied sale (usually FNMA)?
My team sells a lot of Bank owned houses and we have been one bank's exclusive listing agents for over 14 years, so we are very well versed in REOs.
Feel free to contact us if you not currently working with another agent and we would be honored to help you out.
The concept of a Seller paying closing costs is called a "Seller's concession" and in most all cases is negotiated into the purchase price by your Realtor when you are making an Offer to buy a home. The "As Is" notation has nothing at all to do with the willingness or unwillingness of a Seller to consider and/or accept a Buyer's request for a Seller's concession.
Your Mortgage Banker who prequalified you should be able to help you with this based on local market customs in your area.
In addition, "be careful of a home sold as-is".. Always have the home inspected by a licensed and experienced home inspector, don't assume an appraiser is going to pick up on any and all defects of a property. And, if you're looking for closing cost assistance, the cost of some repairs may dwarf those and are in addition to any money you lay out for the actual purchase. Remember the movie "The Money Pit"?
If I can help you in any manner, don't hesitate to contact me.
Michael Bellaire, Broker, ABR