Frequently Asked Questions
A collection of frequently asked questions regarding home purchasing and selling.
What home can I afford?
That depends, of course, on your income and other financial obligations. The best thing to do, is contact a local lender who can look at your financial situation and tell you if you do qualify for a home mortgage, and if you do, what amount you can qualify for. It is always best to sit down with a mortgage lender BEFORE you start looking at homes. Looking at homes first and then finding out you don't qualify for the price range you have been looking at can cause heartbreak. Not only will meeting with a local lender beforehand help you and your REALTOR decide what range to look in, it also makes your offer much more attractive when you can show a seller you are already working with a lender.
Can I buy a home and sell my current one at the same time?
Yes, you can. This can be a tricky and stressful move, but it is possible if you have the right REALTOR with the experience to walk you through the process. You may be worried if you buy a home before you sell the one you are in, you are overextending yourself financially; if you sell before you buy, you may not have anywhere to live. But, we have the tools and experience to look at different lending options, or writing a contingency into the contract to help you reach your final goal with as little stress as possible.
How many homes should I see before I make an offer?
That is totally up to you! You may find that the first one fits all of your criteria, it may be the 10th home. Starting off knowing what area you want to buy in and knowing your must haves will help your REALTOR assist with finding the perfect home. On average, buyers will see a total of 10 homes before writing an offer on one.
How quickly can I close?
If you are using a mortgage to purchase the property, you can typically close on the house within 30-45 days. Cash offers can sometimes close in 7-14 days depending on titlework and inspection repairs.
Do I really need a home inspection?
Yes. We will always encourage you to get a home inspection. This is one of the biggest purchases you will ever make and you need to make sure your home is a good investment. Moving in just to find out you now have to complete $15k in sewer line repairs, or the roof leaks the first time it rains, is not something you want to take a chance on. Home inspections will cost a few hundred dollars up front, but if that can save you thousands in repairs, it is worth it!
What if I change my mind?
The Colorado contract has quite a few dates and deadlines that need to be met throughout the transaction. For example, if you do your home inspection and find the house needs more work than planned, you can terminate and ask for your money back. The same if you don't qualify for your mortgage. To better understand the complexities of backing out of a deal, make sure to talk with your Broker and set your expectations up front.
How much needs to be done to my house before putting it on the market?
This really depends on a few different things. Your Broker can sit down with you to discuss your end goal. Sometimes, repairs and updates will be suggested, sometimes, it is best to market the house just the way it is.
Should I be present when buyers view my house?
No. When the buyer walks in to the house, they need to feel like they can imagine the house as theirs. If you are home during the showing, they are more likely to feel like they are intruding on your space. The buyers will want to be able to feel like they can speak freely with their Broker. It is always best to not be home during showings, or during the inspections.
How much is my house worth?
While you can get estimates of your homes value online, your Broker can give you a better idea of the list price. The condition of your home is not information available to a computer program, nor is it able to take into consideration the appeal of the neighborhood, school districts, desirablitly of the lot, etc. Most websites will have a disclaimer that tell you what their error rate is. You also have the option to get an offer from an I-buyer. While this internet purchase may be the best scenario for you, you should still have a trusted Broker give you their opinion to confirm what your home could sell for and decide if the convenience is worth the lower net amount to you.
How long will it take to sell my home?
This depends on what price range your home is in. The average days on market in our area is 21 days across all price ranges. Your Broker can give you more information based on your specific price range.
When should I sell my home?
Now! If it is winter, don't think you have to wait until spring. If it is spring, don't think you have to wait until summer. While the spring/summer time is typically busier than the cooler months, your can still sell your home in the winter for fair market value. Typically, buyers looking in the colder months are really serious buyers and they have a need to close on a property quickly.
Does the assessed value of my home have anything to do with market value?
NO! The assessed value is a figure El Paso County uses to collect the appropriate amount of taxes. They do not use the same metrics to determine value when assessing the property as Brokers use when determining fair market value.