Can I ask the seller to pay my closing costs? How does that work? - Reid Real Estate Group
September 5, 2017

Can I ask the seller to pay my closing costs? How does that work?

Yes – it is quite common for home buyers to ask sellers to contribute money towards their closing costs.

An example of how this works is:

John and Mary want to buy a Woodbridge, CT home for $200,000.

John and Mary anticipate $8,000 of closing costs to be due at closing. They offer the sellers $208,000 with the seller crediting the buyer $8,000 towards their closing costs, and the sellers agree. At closing the $8,000 over the $200,000 goes towards paying John and Mary’s closing costs, so John and Mary avoid having to pay the extra funds out of pocket.

  What happens if there is only $6,000 of closing costs? Can the buyer pocket the extra funds? Usually not. If you dont use up the funds, they are generally lost.

Can we ask for the sellers to pay our downpayment too?No – lenders will generally not allow this. You will have to bring your own funds for the downpayment.

Is there any downside of having the sellers contribute towards the closing costs? 

  • The property has to appraise at the higher value. If the property doesn’t appraise the sale will have to be renegotiated.
  • The buyer is essentially financing the closing costs, as the loan will be for a higher value than if there were no seller concessions involved.
  • Lenders may have limits to what concessions are allowed, and some won’t allow them at all. Make sure to discuss this with your lender prior to making an offer.
  • Seller concessions may be limited in some short sales or REO sales.
  • Commissions and conveyance taxes will be calculated at the higher sales price.

Last Updated on September 15, 2017 by Minna Reid

Minna Reid

Minna Reid is The Broker - Owner of Reid Real Estate Group. Reid Real Estate Group is a full-service Connecticut residential real estate brokerage, specializing in helping homeowners with legal and financial challenges including short sales, probate sales and tax lien complications.

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