Please feel free to contact us directly with any questions you might have! For convenience, we've summarized some common questions for you to consider.

Buyer FAQ's

Already know what monthly payment you can afford, but wonder what that means in terms of what homes you can afford?

  • Affordability Calculator: https://www.mortgagecalculator.net/affordability/

Here are a couple of tools to calculate what your payment would be based upon various mortgage types:

  • Standard Mortgage: http://usmortgagecalculator.org/
  • Various Mortgages: http://www.hsh.com/mortgage-calculator.html

Consider factors such as your income, expenses, savings, etc.  An affordability calculator can assist in determining what your price range should be, but will not substitute for the valuable advice of a financial consultant.

Yes, but it is a juggling act.  If you buy a home before yours sells, you may become financially overextended.  If you sell before your buy your new home, you might need to rent for a while.  You can do the transactions simultaneously by placing a “sale contingency” in your contract, but the downside is that it may be difficult to get the seller of the home you are interested in to wait to close until your property sells.

As many as you want or need to feel confident in your decision.  Some people find their dream home on day one, while others may spend months before they find the right fit.

Generally speaking, making an offer 5% below asking price won’t offend sellers.  If the property has been on the market for an extended period of time, you could conceivably offer even less.  That said, several factors including current market conditions, the desirability of the property, the seller’s ability to hold, etc. will influence negotiations.

As with any investment, there is always some risk associated with the potential reward.  The best approach is to do research on area comps, a task a Realtor will happily assist you with.

Though there are several factors that can speed up or slow down a closing, such as time needed for inspections, corrections, appraisals, etc., typically one can close escrow within 30-45 days of entering contract.

Typically a home inspection is a good idea so that you can avoid unforeseen expenses for fixing issues you might not otherwise be aware of, such as plumbing, electrical, roof, etc.  If issues arise, you can consider negotiating with the Seller to make appropriate adjustments.  Sometimes a property will sell in “as is” condition, potentially negating the need for an inspection, though such condition should be reflected in a reduction of the asking price.

Buyers can always back out of a deal before it closes, but if they don’t have a justification, they can potentially lose the earnest money deposit (usually 1%-2% of the asking price).  Contingencies provide buyers with loopholes to avoid loss of their deposit.  So, if you are concerned about unpleasant surprised that could lead you to back out and lose your deposit, consider placing contingencies related to the home’s inspection and/or appraisal to protect your deposit.

The first step is usually mortgage pre-approval, unless you are paying in cash.  Applying for a mortgage is a good way to find out how much home you can afford.

Almost everything.  A REALTOR will walk you through every part of the home buying process.  They will educate regarding of all your options, and represent you through each step of the process.

 

Most residential property can be rented. However, it is important that one check with their Homeowners Association. There are many variations as to what type of renting might be allowed. Many Subdivisions allow long term renting while short term renting is not allowed. There are so many variations, one should find out the restrictions for the individual property one desires to rent.

Typically, nothing.  Generally speaking, the sellers pay both their REALTOR® (the listing agent) and the buyer’s agent from the sale proceeds at closing.  Of course, other arrangements can be negotiated.

Usually a 620+ is necessary for favorable terms and ease of obtaining a mortgage.  However, there are many lenders who service buyers who don’t meet that criteria.

 

It depends on several factors such as your loan type, property type and creditworthiness.  Typically down payments range from 3%-10%.  To avoid having PMI, lenders may require 20% down.  VA loans require no money down.

Loan origination fees, which are typically 2%-4% of the loan amount, and closing costs, which are typically split between buyer and seller.

Seller FAQ's

A combination of several methods will be used to market your property, including the MLS (multiple listing service), Zillow, Realtor.com, signage, brochure boxes, our fully staffed office, our website and social media.  In some instances additional advertising in real estate magazines may be used.

Commission is negotiable.  That said, you get what you pay for.  Your REALTOR® is likely going to offer you a commission based upon what they believe will make their services competitive enough for you to select them, while also providing sufficient incentive for them to aggressively market your property.

The length of the listing contract will depend on a combination of standard practices of the REALTOR® and the preferences of the seller.  Generally the REALTOR® will suggest a length that comports with the areas selling season, while the seller may have other needs and/or limitations.  Ultimately, the term is negotiable between the REALTOR® and the seller.

Typical closing expenses for seller include the abstract and title search, survey, real estate commissions, and transfer taxes.

Many sellers believe they should overprice their home to leave room for negotiation, but this can be misguided.  A well-priced home will sell more quickly, and if it is properly valued, should sell for close to the list price.  Pricing a home too high to leave negotiating space may result in fewer showings and less exposure or interest in your property.

When selling a home, it’s important to disclose any issues you are aware of.  Honesty is the best policy.

When you decide to sell your home, one of the most important steps you should take is putting the home in “showable” condition.  You want potential buyers to fall in love with the property, not feel overwhelmed by its poor condition.  The more steps you take to clean the home up and make it an inviting space, the better off you will be.  Don’t neglect the exterior, curb appeal is of paramount importance.

Ask your REALTOR® to provide you with data on current market trends.  One effect tool they will use is consideration of the average number of days homes in the area are on the market.  Other relevant factors are market absorption rates, number of closed transactions, average sales price and list price to sale price ratios.

The best time to sell your home will depend up a number of factors, including current market conditions, seasonal considerations and the seller’s personal wants and needs.

Home Valuation and Pricing FAQ's

A list price is the price the home is listed to sell at; the sale price is the price the home actually closed at.

Assessed values are not the same as market values or appraised values.  Many homes are sold for more than assessed value, while others are sold for less.  Assessed values are used for the purpose of determine taxes for the property by municipalities.  The assessed value is multiplied by the local tax rate to determine annual taxes.  The assessed value has no impact on market value.

To get a good idea of your home’s value, ask your REALTOR® to prepare a CMA (comparative market analysis) for your home.  A CMA is an in-depth analysis of recently sold “comparable” homes in your area from the last 6-12 months.  Factors considered in determining what homes are true comparables are: square footage, number of bedrooms, number of bathrooms, upgrades to finishes and/or appliances, lot features and location, Another option would be to have your home appraised, though that would incur some expense.

Vallecito FAQ's

If you are buying a property that is using a septic one should do the following:

  • Check with San Juan Basin Health Department to make sure that they have a permit on file for your septic.
  • Have the septic located and pumped
  • Have the septic tank checked for condition & size, make sure that it is the proper size for the number of bedrooms in your dwelling.
  • Wells require permits. The State of Colorado Water Resources issues well permits. Often when a well is drilled, the people require that the water be tested. Some tests are performed by the State while others are traditionally performed by private Labs.
  • There are many folks that may have control over one’s ability to have a well, you should always be aware of who has control over the area you desired to drill. Be careful and insure it is allowed. Some of the identies you should inquire with are as follows: County, City, subdivision, Homeowners Associations

While most building activities required building permit, it is very important that you check with the planning and building departments for the requirements. Even though your project is simple, make sure your project meets the county requirements.

It is very difficult to answer for all streams. As water sources in Colorado may have different restrictions. One should check with their nearest Colorado Water Resources Commissioner in their area for the restrictions. Example of this requirement is the streams feeding in and out of Vallecito Reservoir; they require an agreement with the Pine River Irrigation District (PRID). The agreement requires an annual fee.

Most residential property can have some animals. Because of the many type of pets that people have, it is difficult to give a yes or no answer. Be sure to check with the county, city, or homeowners association to determine any restrictions that would apply to the animals you would want to keep on your property.

Yes, it was determined by the Bureau of Reclamation / PRID that a use fee is required for boating and fishing in Vallecito Reservoir. This is common in many of the lakes in Colorado that are used for recreation.

Yes. We have relationships with professionals spanning each and every aspect of home buying and selling, such as mortgage lenders, attorneys, contractors, surveyors, movers, cleaners, handymen, etc.  We will provide you with contact information so that you can evaluate which providers will best suit your individual needs.