Why Buy With Us?
This simple question is one that needs to be answered right away. Why should a homebuyer trust you to find their dream home and negotiate the best price? What knowledge and experience do you bring to the table that will insure a smooth transaction?
We foster a company culture that values people and relationships first. We strive to understand your situation by asking questions and listening to your answers. It’s impossible to start finding solutions with understanding the problems. It’s true each house is unique. It is also true that each family and business is unique and requires a customized approach. Schedule a time for us to come to your home or place of work to understand your real estate dilemmas and ambitions.
Homes For Sale
These are some custom search parameters that can help you get started. If you’d like to set specific criteria we can create a search based on lines drawn on a map or based on many other parameters. Give us a call at 970-244-0800 to get set-up with a custom search.
- North Grand Junction Single Family Homes
- Fruita Single Family Homes
- 3 Bedroom
- 4 Bedroom
- Golf Course Homes
What is the importance of getting pre-approved for a mortgage? How do you go about getting pre-approved?
Whether you are buying a home or a business location, it is important to have sufficient money or consideration* to purchase property. A real estate contract includes a promise from the buyer to buy in exchange for a promise from a seller to sell. In order to be prepared to make that promise it is important to have your ability to back the promise lined out in advance..
So, who do you engage first when navigating the home buying process? A lender, a Realtor, or an attorney? A Realtor has specific knowledge and experience in the home buying process. This activity is what they do and have done on a consistent basis over a period of time. They have sold many properties and experienced the process over and over again. We have worked with many lenders and aware of which lenders are able to deliver on their promises. A lender will have specific understanding the products they offer, but may not be able to provide you with a complete solution for the home you want to buy. An attorney will understand the legality of the process (their specialty), but may not be the best at facilitating all of the moving pieces to coordinate a timely closing.
A Realtor can also conduct a mini pre-qualifying interview to guide you to a lender that best suites your situation. Self-employed home buyers have requirements unique from W-2 employed home buyers. Home buyers interested in buying land for future construction have different requirements than home buyers building a home through a builder. Business owners in searching for a home for their business, have a separate series of decisions to make.
While ensuring that you have the money (consideration) lined up to make an offer to purchase is the first step in buying a home, the person you turn to for guidance and direction while navigating the process from start to finish will be you real estate agent and REALTOR.
*consideration (legal) – Something bargained for and received by a promisor from a promisee; that which motivates a person to do something, especially to engage in a legal act.
With advancements in technology finding a home can be easier than ever for the home buyer. Pulling up available listings through Zillow or Trulia or from an agents website make searching online an enjoyable experience that can be accomplished from home. Your criteria for a house is an important place to start, but may not lead you immediately to the right home. I’ve learned that when buyers walk into a home meant especially for them, criteria goes out the window.
In the house hunt hiring a realtor adds the benefit of having someone on your side who knows what is available and what has sold. We can also schedule showings offered by multiple firms in a row. Whether it’s listing you find or the agent suggests, they can put them o. A list and schedule the showings, print-up comparisons and optimize a driving map so your time can be efficiently spent.
For some people the search takes 6 months and 100 houses. I recently closed on a house with a nice young family who moved to town from out of state. I assisted in their efforts to find a rental property that was close to work and in a good safe neighborhood. They started looking at houses about six months after moving in. We would look at 5-6 houses each time we went out. The husband’s criteria didn’t exactly match the wife’s. He was looking for a great price, close to work and wanted ample space while less concerned with finishes. The wife preferred a house that didn’t say “project” everywhere she turned and had a layout the worked for raising children, accommodating in-laws, and close to good schools. We looked on and off for 6 months hovering just below the $300,000 price range, when 50+ houses later I got a message that they wanted to see an address that was priced at $235,000. We took a look that night because it seemed like a great bargain, made an offer and it was accepted.
The house was a well cared for mid-century home, that certainly had projects, but it was well cared for, clean, sized right, close to work and schools and bargain. Some criteria got set aside and they knew when they walked in, it was the house for them.
Be patient with the processes and keep looking until you find what fits. Sometimes the realtor will lead you to the house that fits, but often it’s a house you come across on your own.
Tips for home buyers with children:
1. Plan for fussy children if looking at houses near meal times. Bring snacks that will help them through until the showings are over.
2. Limit the number of showings to 3 or 4, if you can.
3. Allow your children to enjoy the wonder of seeing other homes, they can find it as enjoyable as you if allowed.
Making an Offer
Once you walk into a house and start making every excuse possible to make it your own, you’ve found the one. Now is the time to make an offer. As soon as you are interested in a house, inevitably another house hunter will be too. Waiting to put in an offer could mean provide a window for another and you’ll miss your opportunity to purchase. Some buyers wait with the attitude that if the house is still there when They are ready to make a decision then it is supposed to be. That’s fine too as long as you understand that it really might not be there and the house hunt will continue.
Your goal in writing an offer is is to write an offer that has hopes of being accepted. This depends on your reasonableness. There is a difference between “I want to write an offer” and “I want to write a winning offer” and can be found with important knowledge and accurate information. You need to dig for everything you can about the property and the seller’s motivations. Not because you want to take advantage of them, but because in a negotiation you want to understand each parties interests in making the deal. It is your decision what price and terms to offer and you need to make it an informed decision. Here are a few things you and need to know about the seller and the property.
How long has the seller been on the market? A longer period could signal an initial stubbornness or a current willingness to deal.
What was their starting price and have they reduced?
Were they listed before and failed to sell?
All this and much more may be researched on the MLS.
Call the listing agent and get more information. Always start by asking if the property is still available. If you cannot have this particular dream home, the earlier you know the better.
The second question should be the least significant and you always want to have insignificant questions. Maybe you want to know how long ago the seller replaced the air conditioner or if the pool has ever been acid washed. These questions lead into more significant property information such as the sellers timetable for moving, and if they’ve had other offers.
Now that you have the knowledge and information, your REALTOR will run comparable listings (comps) on the MLS and share with what other homes have sold for, what other homes are on the market, and what homes are currently pending. A word about comps: only so much can be inferred from what has happened on other homes between other buyers and other sellers. Regardless of the comps, this deal is going to be what your are willing to pay and what the seller is willing to take. I’ve worked with buyers who believe that a seller must take a certain number because that is what the comps say. This is untrue. A seller may do as they please. It is their property. Bear this in mind while negotiating.
Once you’ve decided on a price, terms, and timing for the offer, your agent will write it up using the Colorado approved forms along with the appropriate disclosures of necessary and submit it.
Generally acceptance or counter proposals can be expected between 36 and 48 hours. For institutional or governmental agency sellers this time frame will be closer 72 and 96 hours.
Acceptance and Escrow
In order to go under contract both an offer and acceptance of that offer are required. The offer will state an acceptance deadline which allows the seller a period of time, usually between 1-3 days to review the contract and either accept or present a counter proposal. There are both simple and complicated reasons the seller may object to the contract.
The most important item that will counter balance every other term of the offer is the price, and the level of risk the seller takes on by accepting the offer. If the offer is full price, there will likely be some other contract terms that can be easily overlooked. Some common simple objections the seller may include: 1) seller unable to be present at closing on the date proposed in the offer, 2) other proposed timeline items such as a prolonged inspection period, 3) buyer is asking for seller concessions (amount asked for to help pay the costs of buying the property)., 4) selected Title Company, 5) specific survey requests, or 6) requested property inclusions. Any of these items could be overlooked based on the offered price.
Because buyers are often getting a loan to purchase a property, they present a risk of inability to close to the seller. If a contract is accepted and the buyer is unable to secure financing, the seller will lose precious time on the market, and another potential buyer may be lost. It is a good idea to present a solid pre-approval letter from the bank with a personal cover letter with any information that may persuade the seller to take a risk on you. Buyers frequently need to sell another house in order to buy a house. If a seller accepts a contract from a buyer who needs to sell, then the contract is at risk if the buyer is unable to sell. If you are in this situation it is best to have your house on the market before presenting an offer. The listing agent will be sure to check that the house is offered at a market price and is likely to sell before recommending that the seller accept the offer.
If the seller agrees to the terms of the offer without any changes, he or she may accept the offer by signing it and delivering it to the offeror. If there are minor changes that don’t materially affect the contract, the seller may modify the contract then accept. If no objection to the minor changes is made by the offeror then it is still a contract (Under the U.C.C., an acceptance may slightly modify the offer and still produce a contract. If the parties fundamentally intend to contract and do not intend to insist upon their own terms, then a contract exists, even if the offer and acceptance are not identical. If the acceptance contains additional terms, they become part of the contract, unless the offeror promptly rejects them or they materially transform the offer.) . It is a good practice to have each modification initialed by all parties to the contract.
If the seller does not agree with the terms of the contract, they will either reject the offer, or prepare a counter proposal to the offer. If the listed price is 250,000 and the offered price is 200,000, the counter proposal may simply state that all terms of the contract are to remain the same except for the purchase price, which will be changed to 235,000.
It’s best to be objective about the offer and acceptance process. Emotions can run high when dealing with homes in particular, so a cool head and evaluation of the facts will help guide the process. Real estate contracts carry a lot of provisions, timelines and conditions, that need to be satisfied in order to remain under contract. Violating the terms of the contract can result in default and potentially derail a deal. Your REALTOR will help guide you to closing and keep you from defaulting.
Now that the house or investment property is under contract, the lender will be asking for all of the documents necessary to satisfy their underwriters. This will be a good time to practice patience as lenders ask for things that can seem tedious, nit-picky, and seemingly unnecessary. Underwriters are paid to cover every detail to comply with the many laws governing the lending of money, so take a deep breath and get them the paperwork they ask for and you’ll get the satisfying words “clear to close” from them.
While the bank is asking for your financial life history, your will have time to inspect the property. A property is made up of many systems and home inspectors are trained to look at all of these systems and identify areas that could need to be repaired or replaced. This doesn’t mean that the seller should be responsible for the repairs. If you find items that come-up during an inspection that you feel need to be repaired prior to purchasing, these can be written into a document called the inspection objection. The seller will then have the opportunity to present a resolution to the items listed in the objection. Should the seller refuse to repair any or all of the items listed you, as the buyer have the option to either terminate the contract or withdraw the objection. The seller however, does not have the right to terminate the contract based on the objection, just the right to refuse.
Once you’ve inspected the property and resolved any issues that arose during that process the lender will be ready to order the appraisal for the property. Since the real estate crash of 2008 the Federal Government has placed restrictions on the appraisal process to prevent appraisers from being influenced by brokers and lenders to suit their personal interests. These regulations limit a REALTOR’s ability to influence the appraised value. Depending on the availability of an appraiser in your area, they can take between one to three weeks to complete. Once complete and the property appraises, you’ll be one step closer to closing. If it doesn’t appraise, then you will have another opportunity to back-out of the contract. At this point you can begin a negotiation with the seller to reduce the purchase price of the home or figure out how to come up with the additional cash needed to close. The lender will have loan to value ratio restrictions. For example they will only lend 80% of the appraised value. So if your purchase price is $120,000, and the appraisal comes in at $100,000. You were planning to pay 20% down on 120,000 or 28,800. Now that the appraisal came in at 100,000 you’ll have to pay 20% of 100,000 or 20,000 and the difference between the appraised value and he purchase price, an additional 20,000. So 40,000 instead of 28,800; a significant difference.
This is a good time to start packing if you haven’t already, especially if you have a short contract to close timeline.
After the appraisal is complete or resolved, the settlement company or title company may contact you to get documents necessary to satisfy title insurance requirements (to be covered in a separate post). They will be ordering a pay-off if there is an existing loan and preparing the final settlement documents. The final settlement usually will be ready three days prior to closing. The settlement statement will detail every expense of the sale, which typically includes lenders fees, title fees, recording fees, closing services fees, pro-rated utilities/taxes, water transfer fees, and credits due to concessions. The lender must ensure that the buyer receives the closing disclosure (essentially the lenders portion of the settlement statement) no later than three business days before the closing.according to the Truth in Lending RESPA Integrated Disclosure Rule (TRID 11/2013)..
Once the numbers have been provided, arrange with your bank, lender, and title company how you will bring funds to the closing. This is typically in the form of a cashiers check, but can sometimes be provided with a wire transfer.
A day before or the day of closing you’ll have a contractual right to have a final walk-through of the home to make sure that the refrigerator that was included in the contract didn’t accidentally get moved by the movers, or that the floor didn’t cave in.
Closing often takes place at the title company, but can be arranged at a different location if all parties agree. You will need to bring the funds, and your drivers license. All buyers who are listed on title or the contract will need to be present unless otherwise arranged through power of attorney, advanced signing, or mail-out to out of town sellers/buyers.
After signing the mountains of documents the property will be yours. Don’t forget to pick-up keys.
We manage and broker commercial real estate investments. Finding solutions to investor dilemmas is my primary focus. I model strategies that address your business objectives at any phase of the real estate cycle, and think creatively beyond your existing set of facts.
Real estate is a straightforward and proven investment vehicle, yet can be complex and nuanced. To be successful and realize extraordinary returns, investors must be skilled and strategic with their decisions. Having a good agent or consultant is a crucial piece of the puzzle. We have agents with the CPM and CCIM designation.
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