Why there are not so many customization options like on other ThemeForest themes?
We strongly believe that a WordPress theme should be just a template to skin your site and not a platform. It is the plugin's space. We are not using any custom frameworks to make our life easier, we just code each theme from scratch using the standard WordPress structure and coding, so we are not looking to develop a theme that you can change in any way you want since this will make it over complicated.
We are doing this because in the long term we think you as our client will gain. For example: any developer can get rid of the latest news thumbnails section in Zerif in 5 minutes ( even somebody from Fiverr at $5 ). The same goes for a particular space or color, but when a theme is really complex, you can customize it more; however, when you find something that you can't, it will cost you $500, not $5. Reason being, the code is too complex to understand.
I know that this thing is not for everybody.10-20% of the users won't like that, but 80% will love it, so we are ok with refunding users that don't like the way we are doing things. Again, this is not about that we don't care about our customers. Instead, we do care and we strongly believe that this is the best things for most of you.