The Pain in my Neck: Seller Assist

Real Estate Agent with Smart Green Realty

It is a tough world out there and I feel like a self-rightous jerk saying this but "Why are there so many buyers out and about who don't have a realistic amount of cash?" I'm finding two kinds of buyers: Buyers with savings who are prepared to make downpayments and Buyers who are valiantly making offers and expecting the sellers to pay their closing costs for them. Their agents are chewing me out because I'm fighting for my seller. He has taken good care of his house for 15 years. Why should he have to hand over a big chunk of his equity in order to make a deal?

My listing is a modest, 60-year-old Philadelphia row house (Not from Philly or Baltimore? A row house is like a townhouse.) for $115K. It is a starter house in a pleasant, moderate-income neighborhood. I keep getting calls from agents who expect the seller to give buyers $7000 in "assist" to help them buy. WHY? It is making me nuts. Believe me, I know how hard it is to build savings. I get it that moderate income buyers need a hand. So I found a loan from a big bank that offers an outright grant of $7500 to buyers--even buyers with crummy 630 credit scores. That is $500 more than the maximum FHA seller assist of 6%. The loan is Conventional--not FHA. That means no $65 a month PMI (private mortgage insurance), a significant monthly savings. That should solve the problem--right? NO. Agents keep calling me with buyers who have grant money and still want seller assist. Geez. I'm just asking "What is reasonable?"

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