Home Buying in San Jose>Question Details

Sara Hill, Home Buyer in San Jose, CA

Counter offer from the seller - as is on conditions?

Asked by Sara Hill, San Jose, CA Mon Mar 10, 2008

Need experts advice please:
I accepted a counter offer from the seller “as is" on conditions (this was not the original posting for the house) which means no negotiations after inspections. I am a little afraid that the house would need a lot of repair and I want to ask the seller for some help. I know that I can walk out of the deal during contingency period if the inspector will find something major or more things compare to what is on the seller's original inspections - how I can approach the negotiations later with the seller and be successful with getting some money back? Thank you!

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I have been in many home-sale situations, where the seller called it an "as is" sale, and then after inspection was asked to contribute to discovered inspection-issues, and decided to contribute.

Sometimes, I feel as though sellers like to say "as-is" as a tactic to put potential buyers and buyer's agents on notice that "we will NOT be paying for, nor doing any repairs!" Sometimes it works (see Jackie's answer... the buyer's agent incorrectly tells the buyer "We can't even ask") and sometimes the inspection issues are such that the buyer still requests help, and the seller agrees.

Everything is negotiable, and since you can still walk away due to issues uncovered during inspection, you still have leverage to request "reasonable" assistance with inspection issues. Don't throw in the "kitchen sink".
2 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Mar 10, 2008
Alan May, Real Estate Pro in 60201
MVP'08
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Sara - I also agree with Elvis. "As-Is" doesn't hold - especially when you are in the contingency period and are awaiting inspections. So many agents add "As-Is" clauses but remember that almost everything is negotiable. Blythe
Web Reference: http://www.blythelkern.org
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Mar 10, 2008
My apologies Sara,

Elvis is correct.
I should have said if you find large repairs the seller might be willing to add in some money for repairs, esp if it is a deal breaker.
I have been working with so many bank owned homes lately it must have gone to my head.
Thank you for reminding me Elvis.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Mar 10, 2008
I'm not a lawyer. Legally, at least, you're bound to the terms of the signed agreement.

Everything's negotiable, of course, and (again, I'm not a lawyer), if the seller were to agree to help in some way, that's fine.

However, why would you accept an "as is" counter if you really weren't prepared to accept the house in "as is" condition? I'd certainly be irritated as the seller if a buyer accepted my "as is" counter, then decided he really didn't want it "as is" after all.

Also, I'm unclear from your question as to whether (depending on the inspection) you'd prefer to go ahead with the transaction (with help from the seller) or back out (and "get some money back"). If the home inspection turns up problems and the contract does allow you to cancel, then you cancel and (per the terms of the contract--check with a lawyer) you get your deposit back.

But there are reasons why sellers attach "as is" to a sale. Often, it's not to hide anything specific, but rather to make the sale clean, quick, and simple. You accepted the counter knowing it was "as is." Some would say that you should live up to that obligation.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Mar 10, 2008
Don Tepper, Real Estate Pro in Fairfax, VA
MVP'08
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Sara,

Once you accepted the terms of the home coming "as-is" condition, you cannot get money from the seller for repairs. You have 10 days( if this is what your contract states) to have your inspections done, you either can accept the repairs and fix them yourself or walk away. The seller probably has accepted your price on the home, knowing he won't have to come up with any money for repairs.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Mar 10, 2008
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