Robert Johnson, Real estate broker serving San Fernando Valley.  (E H Realty)

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Jill Murty, Realtor - Orange County, CA
Movoto - Laguna Niguel, CA

Homes are sold in as-is condition.  Repairs are a gift.

While I can see that the counter offer could be viewed as off putting, I don't see the counter as a big deal.  If the seller didn't counter that they'd do no repairs, they would have simply rejected your Request for Repair.

At that point, the buyer would have to decide if they wanted to stay in the deal or exit the transaction.

I think the listing agent could have written in the agent remarks of the listing stating no repairs will be done or they could have mentioned it in a phone conversation so you could have managed the client's expectations regarding repairs. 

Nov 23, 2015 02:44 PM
Nina Hollander, Broker
Coldwell Banker Realty - Charlotte, NC
Your Greater Charlotte Realtor

Our contracts state that home is sold "as is." An inspection is part of due diligence and buyer has right to ask for repairs, but seller has right to say no. Buyer then has right to walk from the contract without major penalty. In this case, seller is short-circuiting the process. The real question is how badly does your client want the home.

Nov 23, 2015 09:31 PM
Sandy Padula & Norm Padula, JD, GRI
HomeSmart Realty West & Florida Realty Investments - , CA
Presence, Persistence & Perseverance

I would not respond and still go back with a repair addendum if warranted to do so. If the seller refuses then your buyer has the option to cancel the contract. Simple. It is not worth getting involved in a war of words. Stick to the contract terms.

Nov 23, 2015 10:11 PM
Wayne Martin
Wayne M Martin - Chicago, IL
Real Estate Broker - Retired

If the buyer wants to pursue the transaction, insert a clause in the inspection language that allows the buyer to walk and get his earnest money back if he does not like the results of the inspection for any reason!

Nov 23, 2015 07:51 PM
Tony and Suzanne Marriott, Associate Brokers
Serving the Greater Phoenix and Scottsdale Metropolitan Area - Scottsdale, AZ
Haven Express @ Keller Williams Arizona Realty

1.  Sellers have the right to sell "as is".

2. Buyers have the right to inspect, and request repairs.

3. Sellers have a right to decline to make any repairs.

IMHO - Seller is doing the Buyer a "favor" by advising them (in the contract), that if the Buyers request repairs after the inspection, the Seller's response will be "no".  Buyers have the opportunity to move on and save the cost of the inspection, or pay for the inspection then decide.

Nov 23, 2015 11:19 PM
Susan Emo
Sotheby's International Realty Canada - Brokerage - Kingston, ON
Kingston and the 1000 Islands Area

We operate like the Seller in this instance.  Sellers do not make repairs unless it is a hidden defect and then we go back to the table.   If we want a Building Inspection, we insert this clause:

"The inspection of the subject property by a home inspector at the Buyer's own expense, and the obtaining of a report satisfactory to the Buyer in the Buyer's sole and absolute discretion. The Seller agrees to co-operate in providing access to the property for the purpose of this inspection. Unless the Buyer gives written notice prior to 6:00 pm on the 24th November, 2015 that this condition has been fulfilled, this Offer shall be null and void and the deposit shall be returned to the Buyer in full without interest or deduction."

Nov 23, 2015 09:58 PM
Roy Kelley
Retired - Gaithersburg, MD

Even when the property is being sold as is, your buyer client should have the option to opt our after an unfavorable inspection.

Nov 23, 2015 10:43 PM
Lise Howe
Keller Williams Capital Properties - Washington, DC
Assoc. Broker in DC, MD, VA and attorney in DC

I would encourage the buyer to move on. I think this one is more trouble than it is worth.

Nov 23, 2015 09:32 PM
Jeff Pearl
RE/MAX Distinctive / LIC in VA - Lovettsville, VA
Full Service Full Time Realtor

Even if seller can't afford to pay for repairs, you should still have right to cancel or withdraw offer based on results of home inspection. If the house looks fairly well taken care of, I wouldn't worry too much about it if I were the potential buyers. Sellers might change their attitude if they have no other offers, and your buyers plan to withdraw if house needs too much work. From the sounds of it, I wouldn't want those sellers doing any repairs on a house I planned to purchase.

Nov 23, 2015 07:48 PM
Amelia Robinette
NoVa House and Home - Frankly Realty - Falls Church, VA
Education, Innovation, Service

A way to write into the contract that you won't be nitpicky is to include something like this:

"Contingent on satisfactory home inspection, buyer will not pursue any single item with less than $250/$500/$1000 cost to repair" Whatever number works for your buyer.

Of course, your buyer needs to be on board with this, it gives them the out if there is a major issue, but makes it very clear to the seller that you're not going to ask for a list of 20 outlets to be fixed, or loose railing to be tightened, or some other minor issue a homeowner can easily fix or have fixed on their own.

No HI repairs = lower price IMO, convenience costs money.

Nov 24, 2015 09:05 PM
Barbara Todaro
RE/MAX Executive Realty - Happily Retired - Franklin, MA
Previously Affiliated with The Todaro Team

ditto to what Nina Hollander just stated.... I could not have said it better...

Nov 24, 2015 02:54 AM
Michael Thacker - Re/Max Real Estate Center - Louisville
Re/Max Real Estate Center - The Thacker Group - Louisville, KY
Your best friend who just happens to be a Realtor

We have two clauses as options for inspections, one being "normal", and one for instances where the seller will do NOTHING, and the inspection if only for info.

Nov 23, 2015 10:42 PM
Curtis Evans
Cabin Realty LLC/ USA, Licensed in Louisiana - Golden Meadow, LA

Nina Hollander got this one !!

Nov 23, 2015 10:35 PM
Joan Cox
House to Home, Inc. - Denver Real Estate - 720-231-6373 - Denver, CO
Denver Real Estate - Selling One Home at a Time

In our brisk market, we saw this often this past spring and summer.  

Nov 23, 2015 10:31 PM
Jack Lewitz
Exit Strategy Realty - Evanston, IL

Nina and Joe gave you my answer . I would also add that if your buyer uses an attorney then some items can be addressed by them in the atty review 

Nov 23, 2015 10:00 PM
Joe Pryor
The Virtual Real Estate Team - Oklahoma City, OK
REALTOR® - Oklahoma Investment Properties

I have never recommneded to a buyer to buy a house as is. I would use verbage that would be something like contingent on buyers satisfied acceptance of inspection report and put in zero repairs.

Nov 23, 2015 09:31 PM
Gita Bantwal
RE/MAX Centre Realtors - Warwick, PA
REALTOR,ABR,CRS,SRES,GRI - Bucks County & Philadel

We have forms that we just fill in the names  etc for these things. Do you have standard forms?

Nov 23, 2015 09:02 PM
John McCormack, CRS
Albuquerque Homes Realty - Albuquerque, NM
Honesty, Integrity, Results, Experienced. HIRE Me!

Looks like you have sound advice on this one.

Nov 23, 2015 07:57 PM
TeamCHI - Complete Home Inspections, Inc.
Complete Home Inspections, Inc. - Brentwood, TN
Home Inspectons - Nashville, TN area - 615.661.029

 Good Tuesday morning Robert. I've been through this drill several times. It is a negotiating tool.

Nov 23, 2015 05:05 PM
Ryan Huggins - Thousand Oaks, CA - Thousand Oaks, CA
Residential Real Estate and Investment Properties

That is standard on flips especially.  In california the purchase contract says all homes are sold as-is.  I write that language into my counters for my investor clients.

Nov 23, 2015 02:58 PM
Robert Johnson
E H Realty - West Hills, CA
Real estate broker serving San Fernando Valley.

It hit the market 9/19/15, and I forgot to mention this is a NOD sale,
notice of default. Title company is 14 days behind, however title and list
agent said there is no notice of sale yet. I spoke to the agent, he said
they would possibly accept 635k if we countered with no closing.

Nov 23, 2015 02:15 PM
Mike Rock
Complete Design - Granite Bay, CA
Granite Bay Luxury New Construction...For Less

well, 1) you stated the situation very well. clear and concise. your offer may be too far apart to get a deal. with a poor counter like the seller did. 2) you may be a straight shooter, but you cant control your buyer. they MAY try to use it as a negotiating tool later to your dismay. 3) seller saying as is , is a flag. working behind the scenes was smart. i am most concerned with the 4000 reduction. not even 1%. how long on the market?

Nov 23, 2015 01:52 PM
Katina Hargrove 352-551-0308
Stake Your Land Realty, Inc. - Eustis, FL
Broker/Owner, SFR®, e-PRO®, GRI, AHWD, REALTOR®

Good morning Robert,

Make it work, do not lose the deal, negotiate

Nov 28, 2015 09:50 PM
Evelyn Johnston
Friends & Neighbors Real Estate - Elkhart, IN
The People You Know, Like and Trust!

There may be some thing they will have to fix if discovered to be regarding the foundation, your health or safety as determined by an underwriter.  Or they will not loan money against it.

Nov 24, 2015 12:53 PM
Debbie Reynolds, C21 Platinum Properties
Platinum Properties- (931)771-9070 - Clarksville, TN
The Dedicated Clarksville TN Realtor-(931)320-6730

I don't have a problem with that. In fact I prefer it be stated up front and not lead a buyer to think that there will be negotiating of repairs later.

Nov 24, 2015 11:02 AM
Troy Erickson AZ Realtor (602) 295-6807
HomeSmart - Chandler, AZ
Your Chandler, Ahwatukee, and East Valley Realtor

Robert - I am surprised at some of the responses here. I would certainly not suggest that a buyer purchase a $645k home as-is, without a home inspection.

If the seller doesn't have money for repairs, then that certainly should be a negotiating factor. After all, isn't a home inspection to help protect the buyer from potential hidden issues?

If buyer accepts counter as-is, and discovers a $15,000 roofing issue during the inspection, are they just supposed to eat that amount, or have the ability to negotiate the sales price since the seller has no money to pay for repairs.

I like the response Wayne Martin gave. Perform the inspection, and if there are no issues, then proceed. If there are issues, make sure there is a clause in the contract that buyer can still back out and get their earnest money back.

Nov 24, 2015 09:34 AM
Fred Hafdelin
Weichert Realtors - Mountain Lakes, NJ

I like Wayne Martins answer.

Nov 24, 2015 05:36 AM
Bob Crane
Woodland Management Service / Woodland Real Estate, KW Diversified - Stevens Point, WI
Forestland Experts! 715-204-9671

I can understand the sellers point nothing more irritating than somebody trying to renegotiate the price

Nov 24, 2015 04:52 AM
Ron and Alexandra Seigel
Napa Consultants - Carpinteria, CA
Luxury Real Estate Branding, Marketing & Strategy


I think everyone has given you wonderful answers, and I have nothing to contribute.  Happy Thanksgiving. A

Nov 24, 2015 04:50 AM
Caroline Gerardo
Licensed in 20 states - Newport Beach, CA
C. G. Barbeau the Loan Lady nmls 324982

You saw the property- how well is it maintained? With NOD seller doesn't have money to do repairs. Make sure there are carbon monoxide and smoke detectors to meet California law before you get to appraisal. Don't add more wording. Counter that buyer is paying for inspection only. Buyer pays for inspection and finds out whats good or bad and then decides to walk quickly or move ahead. You need tight turn times to manage

Nov 24, 2015 04:13 AM
Gabe Sanders
Real Estate of Florida specializing in Martin County Residential Homes, Condos and Land Sales - Stuart, FL
Stuart Florida Real Estate

Hi Robert.  I would be very wary of writing more into this counteroffer.  If the buyer is not comfortable with this request, he can move on to another home, but he may miss an opportunity that won't come again.

Nov 24, 2015 03:43 AM
Eve Alexander
Buyers Broker of Florida - Tampa, FL
Exclusively Representing ONLY Tampa Home Buyers

I don't believe for one minute that the seller came up with that...that agent did.  Sellers take on the attitude of the agent. Period.

Counter offer that the buyer will not nit pick? You want the listing agent to check your reputation?  Are you serious? Who are you representing, yourself?  Neither of you or the listing agent are party to the contract so who cares what you think or the listing agent thinks of you?

I think that the cards are on the table...face up.   This transaction will be a nightmare because you have an unreasonable seller and an agent that think they have a palace.

You bet this counter offer is a turn off.

If this were my buyer I would give them all their options...if they really want the house, then do inspections and if that is not satisfactory to them, walk from the deal and go buy another house.  

You will see how quickly the seller is willing to re-negotiate some repairs.


Nov 24, 2015 03:38 AM
Michael Jacobs
Pasadena, CA
Pasadena And Southern California 818.516.4393

Actually not uncommon --- the California purchase agreement states all sales are "as is".  In my opinion, it's better for a buyer to know upfront -- often it seems the inspection begins a new round of negotiations.  

Nov 24, 2015 03:33 AM
Praful Thakkar
LAER Realty Partners - Andover, MA
Andover, MA: Andover Luxury Homes For Sale

Robert Johnson , this is seller's market - specially I think where you are.

Now if the buyers have liked the home, they can still go ahead with the inspection and back out if there are major concerns.

Now I have been in such situations as buyer's agent as well as listing agents - and believe me, repairs were DONE!

Nov 24, 2015 02:35 AM
Lyn Sims
Schaumburg, IL
Real Estate Broker Retired

Maybe you WILL nit pick the seller to death. I'm sure that a seasoned listing agent can smell it in the water. 

We have properties all the time with that type of verbiage & that's the way it is. I would suggest that you tell the buyer thoroughly what an inspection is for - not renegotiating of the sales price nor to fix every defect in the property. 

Nov 24, 2015 12:13 AM
William Feela
Realtor, Whispering Pines Realty 651-674-5999 No.

Selling "as is" is just that.  If I have a listing I make she that the buyers agents understand that and that the seller are not able to repair.

Still  a good idea for the buyer to ispect for their own peace of mind

Nov 23, 2015 11:29 PM
Michael Setunsky
Woodbridge, VA
Your Commercial Real Estate Link to Northern VA

Robert Johnson The property is being sold "As Is". The buyer has the choice to accept the counter, reject it or counter back. Your reputation doesn't play in the negotiations. This is between the seller and your buyer.

Nov 23, 2015 10:54 PM