We waited with baited breath Friday afternoon and never heard anything back from Monica. Friday turned into Saturday and Saturday turned into Sunday. Still, we had no answer from the sellers. Sure, we understood that it was over the weekend and they needed time to consider our offer, but in today’s modern age of email and cell phones, and even home phones, you would think that a negotiation would be able to move along pretty quickly. Monica would text and email both Jason and I to keep us updated on the fact that there were no updates.
Finally Monday morning arrived and we fully expected to hear back with from the sellers that they accepted our offer. Or, at least I did. Jason had discovered that the offer was an extreme low ball. Turns out, the tax value put on the MLS listing was for the lot that the house sat on only. It didn’t incorporate the tax values for the 2 extra lots they were selling with the house. Jason found out that the real tax value for the entire property was somewhere in the range of $118,000. So our $94,000 offer was substantially off. But I kept telling Jason, and myself, that we were still okay and that you never know; they may accept our offer. Or they could come back with a counter around $100K, somewhere in between the two prices.
At about 12 pm on Monday Jason and I were each copied on an email from Monica. THEY FLAT OUT REJECTED OUR OFFER!! To say that there were numerous explicatives running through my head at the time is a massive understatement! I was so mad! I mean, I know we low balled them, but they didn’t even counter. It felt very rude to me.
|This is very much how I felt and had I been her age...it very well may have sent me into a full tantrum!||Image credit: Daniel Hughes via Flickr, Creative Commons.|
But we wanted the house and were willing to work. They requested full price again but at the very least agreed to pay up to $5000 in closing costs, but were not putting the home warranty in either.
I quickly called Jason and we discussed our options. I still was not really willing to put in full price. It seemed a little unreasonable to me that a seller would not want to accept an offer on a house that has been on the market for almost a year that was less than the asking price. Why would you put something on the market if you weren’t really ready to let it go?
Jason and I contacted Monica and asked her to check with the seller’s agent about accepting $104,900 with seller paying closing, since they weren’t willing to put in the home warranty. We asked Monica to check without putting in a formal offer on paper as it seemed to be a lot of leg work for everyone involved if they were going to flat reject it again.
By Tuesday around 11 am, we had our answer. They were still unwilling to come off the purchase price and said they would only accept $107,900. I mean, $100 off of your asking price? Stingy much? In today’s market….let’s just say they were lucky they had this particular house and not much else was out there. They would still do $5000 in closing and finally decided that the home warranty was an acceptable factor in the negotiations. Oh…one more thing…they said there was another offer on the table, so in order for us to secure the house, we had to have this offer formally wrote up by 10 am Wednesday morning.
Sheesh! We were really starting to get peeved by these people. Did we believe them that there was another offer on the table? Maybe; maybe not. The house had been on the market for a year and as far as we were aware, no offers had been submitted. And then, within two days of us submitting an offer, someone else decides they want the house too? Very convenient, don’t ya think? In reality, we think they may have been trying to fool us into putting in the offer they really wanted and by telling us there was someone else interested, tricked us into doing just that. Did it work? Yes. Was it conniving and probably a fabrication to get more money out of us? Yes.
So we were back at the house with Monica, again, meeting in the kitchen, ready to submit our formal offer that we knew the sellers would accept, if we submitted it by 10 am.
And here’s where things get really tricky. Because of the flat out rejection on the first offer, Monica decided to take a very close look at what we were doing. It’s not that she had neglected to do this before, but with the stakes at the level they were currently at, we really didn’t want anything else getting in the way of our offer being rejected again.
Monica noticed that the house was being sold as three separate lots. USDA has a gargantuan amount of restrictions. Put two and two together and you get a sticky situation. Because Monica was aware of who we were working with (C-S lady), she had been doing some leg work between noon and our 5 pm meeting. Turns out, USDA would not loan us the amount needed to purchase all three lots together. Upon further digging, C-S lady advised that FHA wouldn’t either. That last bit of info wasn’t available to us until we were actually standing in the kitchen with Monica. Finding that to be unlike past transactions she had handled, Monica phoned two different banks and asked if the FHA loan would approve us for the 3 lots. Both of those bankers advised that FHA should in fact qualify that house for a loan.
So the three of us, Monica, Jason and myself, decided that our best bet was to meet with SunTrust in person to make sure that the loan type that was wrote into our offer would be the viable financing for the house and there would be no little detail that could ultimately disqualify us from getting the blue and yellow house.
So I called my boss and asked if I could have the morning off and then we were set to get everything going and get our offer accepted!
Love as always