I think they are saying to offer them less per point than what they are asking, and agree to pay costs + dues, rather than offer what they are asking but asking them to pay those. I had luck pro-rating the monthly dues (closed in october, offered to reimburse 3 months of dues) and splitting closing costs. Also, don't be afraid to go back to the same seller with the same or lower offer if you notice they have been listed for a while. They may figure your offer is as good as it's going to get. If they've sold for what they are asking, then, they were right not to accept what you were offering. As a PP said, it's a mind game to some degree -- just figure out the total you are willing to pay, and work from there.