You can certainly write an offer negotiating the closing date out further.
It may not fit the seller's timeframe, but they may be willing to agree to the offer hedging that they may not get another acceptable offer for an earlier closing date. Sometimes the certainty of a contract that isn't ideal is better than the uncertainty of remaining on the market.
It is likely the seller will request that you complete due diligence in a more immediate timeframe, however. For example, they will probably not want attorney approval and inspection contingencies to drag out for that period and request that these contingencies be satisfied within a week or two of contract execution. They will also likely want you to begin the mortgage application process and secure a commitment letter. The bank you are working with will likely want to hold on the appraisal until closer to the closing, so you may have a commitment letter from the lender subject to a satisfactory appraisal which will take place closer to the closing date.
If you are waiting because of a lease, you may find the seller may negotiate an earlier closing if they can cover part of your losses on an existing lease. If the seller has to "carry" the home until your January, it may be less expensive for them to payoff your lease liability to get you to close sooner.
Best of luck. I definitely recommend securing the help of an agent to navigate these negotiation. I help clients with issues similar to this regularly.
Whatever your circumstances are always dictates the terms to an offer. I would give the seller the offer. Let your agent put together an offer which explains your situation, This could be what the sellers are looking for. Good Luck!
Audrey "Ellen" Elliott
Keller Williams Realty - Pearland, Texas
I tell all my buyers that the intial offer you make on a place should be your 'best case scenario'. You never know what circumstances the sellers have. They may actually prefer a longer closing than a quick one. Especially around the end of the year, some sellers like to be in their homes for the holidays one last time. They may prefer to have a quicker closing but you'll never know until you make the intial offer. Another thing to consider is how long your mortgage broker can offer to lock your interest rate. Some can only lock for a short period of time in which case a longer close could cost you more if you have to extend the lock. Good luck!!
Another possible option for avoiding PMI would be a seller carryback - provided the chosen lender doesn't prohibit this option. It's always a good idea to use a buyers agent to represent you during the purchase negotiations. They can help you with these things including sellers paying closing costs, personal property such as fridge, washer/dryer etc. Please let me know if you would like a referral.
We are now looking at a different house in the same neighborhood. Hopefully we'll be able to get an offer together soon, but the terms would be the same with us not wanting to close until January. If it comes down to it though we may have to close earlier to get the deal done. We'll see.
I am curious what your Realtor says about your situation. Do you need a Realtor?
If you want the house, I would suggest that you make an offer, set the closing for whatever date in January you want. An alternative would be to buy the home and if the current owners want to stay in it after closing they can do a "lease back" for a month or two.
If you do not have a Realtor and need one, I 'd be happy to refer you to a top Realtor in your area that can help you, or contact one of the helpful agents that responded to your post.
We also want to save up some more money for the down payment, though. Right now we've got about 18%, and we want to save up the couple thousand dollars that it will take to get us over 20% over the next month or two (we really really want to avoid PMI). However with your advice I think we may instead ask our mortgage counselor about getting a piggyback loan for that 2% which we can pay off after moving in.