The 4 Phases in Home Buying
1 - IDENTIFY AND UNDERSTAND YOUR NEED AND WANTS
Every successful purchase begins with defining what you need (a home for you and your family) and what you want (everything else!). Combining both definitions leads to the best possible outcome.
2 - PINPOINT OPTIMAL FINANCING
3 - FIND THE RIGHT HOUSES FOR YOU
4 - NEGOTIATE AND COMPLETE A FAVORABLE DEAL
You're ready to buy—now what? As your Buyer Agent, this is when I roll up my sleeves and advocate for you throughout contract negotiations all the way to closing. I provide you with detailed information on the property to help ensure you get the best possible price and terms.
Buying a home requires striking a deal beyond price — possession terms, inclusions, inspection contingencies, appraisal, and much more. The Buy and Sell Contract typically requires over 200 information items, and sale price fills in only one “blank”. The other represent significant opportunities to make the contract safer and more favorable for you.
Promoting your best interests every step of the way, I help you separate your “must-haves” from “nice-to-haves”. I lay out your options on every negotiated point — from the most aggressive stance to the position least likely to raise a red flag from a buyer.
Then, fully informed, you decide on the best strategy for you.
Envision the Lifestyle You Want
BASIC HOME FEATURES
- Do you prefer a single-family detached home, or an attached townhome or condominium, or another type of property?
- Desired number of bedrooms and baths?
- Preferences regarding kitchen, dining, family rooms, etc., and preferred home layout?
- High-priority home features, such as kitchen appliances, fireplaces, etc.?
- Other types of rooms needed (a home office, or hobby space)?
- Storage spaces (closets, basement, outdoor shed, etc.)?
OTHER HOME PREFERENCES
- Ranch, 2- story, multi-level, etc.?
- Age of construction?
- Remodeled or renovated?
- How important is energy efficiency or other “green home” features?
NEIGHBORHOOD / LOCATION
- Commuting considerations (to work, school, shopping, recreation, etc.)?
- Proximity to desirable features (community center, gym, hospital, light rail, highways, etc.)?
- Views – how important is it to find your ideal view (the mountains) or avoiding a bad one (the highway)?
- Homeowner Association Fees
- Property Taxes
- Size and shape, including the back, front, and side yards?
- Landscaping considerations – the need for open play areas, privacy, patio space, decking, garden, extra parking, etc.?
- Home orientation – is it important for you home to face in a particular direction?
LIFE AT HOME
- If you'll be sharing your home with children, pets, live-in parents or other adults, how does this impact your housing preferences? Both now and in the future? (For example, pets may require a fenced-in yard; older parents may dictate one-floor living.)
- Hobbies or leisure activities to consider?
- Proximity to neighbors?
- How much do you want to invest in a home beyond the purchase price, either in terms of renovation and “sweat equity”, if you can't find exactly what you want?
- Are you willing to consider other neighborhoods that provide better affordability?
- How long do you plan to live in this home? How does this impact the type of home you will buy, how much you'll spend, and your choice of location?
Home Shopping Strategies
ONLINE HOME SEARCH ON DOUGMOVESYOU.COM
This automatic search is your very own “portal” to the Multiple Listing Service (MLS) with instant and accurate data on available homes.
ONLINE HOME SEARCH FEATURES
- 100% Mobile Friendly
- Access anywhere you have an internet connection
- Search using any criteria
- Save homes
- Share homes
- Rank homes
- Keep notes
- Save Searches
- Create your own Just Listed Email Property Alerts
- See Property Recommendations from Doug
ALL OF WHICH I REVIEW AND USE TO ASSIST & EMPOWER YOU ON YOUR HOME SEARCH JOURNEY!
HOME FOR SALE SIGNS
INTERNET & ADS
OPEN HOUSE VISITS
Denver Metro Schools & Crime
Public School Districs
The Best School Districts ranking provides a comprehensive assessment of the overall experience of a school district. This grade considers key factors such as the strength of academics, quality of teachers, school resources, the quality of student life, as well as student and parent reviews, to measure the overall excellence of the district.
To see all the rankings and to get more information: https://k12.niche.com/rankings/public-school-districts/best-overall/m/denver-metro-area
Decisions are yours as to where you live or where your children attend school. It is important that once you locate a house, neighborhood, or area that you determine if the school system is satisfactory to you.
It seems all areas have some level of crime. How much crime is too much crime for you? The local police department has statistics on crime rates and types in various areas. Two helpful websites to answer questions and many others about particular communities are www.crimereports.com and www.homefacts.com.
There is a federal law called “Megan’s Law”. Megan was a small child who was molested and murdered by a convicted and released sex offender who resided in her neighborhood. The law stated that people living in a neighborhood have the right to know if such a person is residing in the neighborhood. You may want to check this through the local police jurisdiction, who are required to keep lists of these people.
The Family Watchdog website allows you to type in a street address to see if there are any registered sex offenders in the area: www.familywatchdog.us.
Lender Interview Cheat Sheet
GETTING PRE-APPROVED AND WHICH LENDER SHOULD YOU USE?
The mortgage industry is heavily regulated and it is imperative that you select a competent and reliable lender that will work meticulously with you all the way through closing. Local lenders are best able to do this.
A quoted interest rate should not be your only consideration.
TAKE 15-20 MINUTES AND CALL A LENDER BEFORE FILLING OUT AN INITIAL APPLICATION. HAVE AN IDEA OF YOUR CREDIT SCORE AND YOUR AVAILABLE FUNDS.
You are interviewing them to see what they have to offer you. If you are comfortable working with them, then move forward with completing an application. You can do more than one application without impacting your credit. Your lender selection is critical and the wrong decision could cost you extra money. If possible, meet the lender in person.
HERE ARE SOME QUESTIONS YOU CAN ASK:
- What kind of loans do you offer
- Do you understand a Colorado real estate contract, and the importance of deadlines?
- What are your specific Lender costs and fees?
- Are you equipped to approve loans in-house?
- How much time do you need to fund a loan?
- What is your availability and how do you communicate?
- What kind of loan would you recommend for me?
- What are the advantages and disadvantages of this loan program?
- What is the current interest rate?
- What is the Annual Percentage Rate (APR)?
- What are the discount points and origination fees?
- What are all the other costs of the loan?
- If the rate is adjustable, how will the rate and loan payment vary?
- What are the qualifying guidelines for this loan?
- What is the required down payment for this loan?
- Is there a prepayment penalty?
- Will mortgage insurance be required?
- What documents will I need to provide?
- Will the lender guarantee the Loan Estimate of settlement charges and loan terms?
- When is the loan rate locked? Is there a fee for the rate lock?
Helping You Get Home
PARTNERS SERVING YOU
As you proceed through your real estate purchase, professionals in other fields may be necessary. Decisions of the specific professionals are yours to make. We gladly give you names of professionals in various service areas for which we have some knowledge – those used by other clients or been suggested by other brokers or other sources. This list is a starting point. You may hire any professional of your choice. Be sure they are licensed and qualified. We cannot guarantee the outcome or level of any services provided. You need to be comfortable with the professionals you select, whether from this list or any other source.
THE RIGHT LENDER WILL MAKE – NOT BREAK – THE DEAL FOR YOU
- MICHELLE ODDO | LEADER ONE | 720.738.1080
- BRENT OSLAND | MODERN MORTGAGE | 303.956.5993
- JEFF ARONHEIM | CITYWIDE HOME LOANS | 720.200.5464
- REBECCA HANSEN | GUILD MORTGAGE | 720.746.4066
SEEK COUNSEL EARLY IN THE PROCESS TO BE SURE THE PROPERTY IS INSURABLE AT THE LOWEST COST
- JEREMY BURKETT | TOWN & COUNTRY INSURANCE | 303.388.7216
- RICHARD WHITE | FARMERS INSURANCE | 303.988.8300
THE LENDER NORMALLY ORDERS; IF BUYING WITH CASH OR SELLER-CARRY FINANCING, BUYER SELECTS
- MATT GEORGE | EAGLE APPRAISALS | 303.721.7007
- MARK WHITMAN | WHITMAN APPRAISALS | 720.870.3585
- ROBIN ANDERSON | ANDERSON APPRAISALS | 720.363.1776
SELLER OFTEN SELECTS – TO PROVIDE A TITLE INSURANCE POLICY FOR YOU
- LAND TITLE GUARANTY COMPANY
- FIDELITY NATIONAL TITLE COMPANY
REAL ESTATE ATTORNEYS
LEGAL COUNSEL FOR THE TRANSACTION AND INSPECTION OF TITLE
- BUDDY NOEL | NOEL LAW OFFICE | 303.882.1408
HOME WARRANTY COMPANIES
WARRANTY POLICIES FOR CERTAIN MAJOR & MINOR SYSTEMS; RESEARCH CAREFULLY
- FIDELITY NATIONAL HOME WARRANTY
- BLUE RIBBON HOME WARRANTY
- COLORADO HOME WARRANTY
HOME / OFFICE ORGANIZATION
TAKE CONTROL OF YOUR NEW SPACE
- MICHELLE SANTAFERRARO | ORGANOMICS | 720.252.4533
- KAREN GILMORE | ORDEROLOGY | 503.516.5160
** PROPERTY INSPECTION RESOURCES CHANGE FROM TIME TO TIME; ASK ME FOR REFERRALS **