How did we figure out our counter offer? We got a bunch of ball park estimates from various contractors and electricians. There wasn't enough time to schedule them in, so we got some general quotes. We added all those things up for the Main House and decided to be nice and not mention the problems in the Crooked House. Aaron, our agent, and I all separately came up with the same number - $165k to counter offer our initial offer at $200k. The seller priced out the Main House as if the electricity was safe, the HVAC worked great, and pests or structural issues. We had ALL of those things, hence the price concession to fix them.
WOW - Never imagined the negotiations and closing to be so stressful. We sent in our counter offer price to the seller about 5 days before Due Diligence was up, but hadn't heard a PEEP. We were driving back from Pennsylvania for a cousin's wedding on the day that DD would end, and it was getting to be a few hours away.
We finally got a call from our agent who was pushing us to go ahead and sign the termination agreement to enact if we wanted to save our "earnest" money. The earnest money we agreed upon at the start of this process was $1000, and at this point we have spent close to $3000 on inspections, appraisals, and other things on the Main House and the Crooked House. The earnest money gets rolled into the final purchase price at closing, so it won't be wasted IF we actually really wanted the house. Aaron and I had a serious conversation in the car while sweating profusely about the thought of losing the chance on the house. We decided that we really wanted it and would gamble the earnest money since we would lose the DD advantage at 5:00pm that day if we didn't hear from the seller.
It was like 3:15pm when we finally got word that she didn't like our pricing and countered our counter offer at $185k. Aaron was immediately thrown back, but we had to remind ourselves that they are trying to get as much as they can AND they know they have a backup offer. We spoke with our agent to meet her in the middle at $175k. That's when we got REALLY nervous. She didn't get back to us by 5pm. We lost our DD advantage. We grew angry and resentful for an hour. We started to calm down and accept the situation and just hoped we could come to an agreement when our agent text us that the seller would be chatting with the selling agent at 6:45pm, and tension drove us over the edge watching the clock again. We waited and waited. She came back with another offer at $180k and she would extend DD until the next day at 5pm for us. Aaron and I then felt badly about some of the resentments we had earlier.
We ended up taking the $180k offer, but if she would treat the current flea problem AND remove the garbage from the house and property. She agreed and we signed something that said this is the concession and this is new closing date since DD moved.
Well, it's two days after when closing was supposed to be from that agreement. The seller pushed a day due to schedule issues, and we are now pushing closing until all the garbage is off the property. Since the seller is older, we offered to do the actual clean up if she provided the dumpsters for us. Our agent is pitching in as well too! We received the dumpster yesterday, so we spent the evening filling it up to the top. As of right now, we are hoping they will take it away today and replace it with a new one for the weekend.
There are still fleas in the Main House, but a whole lot less of them. We are waiting on the documentation on the flea treatment and schedule for the next treatment. It needs about 1 or 2 more rounds at least.. Aaron's really upset about the fleas, but I have faith!