As the buyer, you can always ask the seller to pay a certain percentage of your closing costs for you. Generally this is done by asking for a certain percentage of the purchase price (1-3%) towards your closing costs. As the previous agent mentioned, be aware that whatever amount you ask the seller to pay will reduce his net proceeds, so if asking the seller to pay your closing costs, it may be wise to increase your offer to offset what you are asking for. In general your loan payment will only increase by roughly $6 per $1000 in additional loan, if you are cash strapped this might be the better way to go.
As to what closing costs are negotiable in regards to what must be paid, the following may be negotiated: Loan Origination Fee (fee you pay the lender) can be reduced to zero if you choose a mortgage broker. Loan Discount - you can choose to â€œbuy downâ€ your interest rate. Appraisal Fee - you may safe a few dollars by hiring your own appraiser. Certain programs (HomePath for example) do not require an appraisal so if you qualify for a HomePath loan, this may be an option. You can prevent having to pay â€œpointsâ€ by choosing a slightly higher interest rate. I recommend you call more than one lender and â€œshopâ€ for a loan, then choose whoever will give you the best service, the best rate, and charge you the least amount of fees. Also find a good Title Agency and a good Escrow Officer who will explain things to you in detail and who charge the least amount of fees.