Are you looking to buy a home this year? Here is the phased approach I take my clients through to ensure a smooth, streamlined and less stressful process!
Things to Know Before You Start Your Search
Before you start actively looking at properties, I recommend that you first identify your goals with this purchase. Ask yourself the following questions:
- Are you looking for your forever home?
- What’s your 5-10-year plan with the property?
- Are you focused on long-term investment?
- Do you prefer a neighborhood/property that’s investor-friendly?
Next, I suggest you review your financial situation and have an introductory call with a mortgage lender to see what you are pre-approved for. I am happy to share recommendations of mortgage lenders who I have worked with in the past and trust. Given how hot the Denver market is, it is very important to be pre-approved and understand what you can afford or are comfortable spending before you start viewing properties so that you can act quickly when you find one you’d like to submit an offer to.
Getting to Know You and Your Needs
I always like to meet with my clients to discuss their needs and goals which include the type of home, price range, location, etc. This helps me personalize the search I set up for you and how we tackle the home search process. Some questions I ask clients may include:
- What style properties do you like? Modern, traditional, contemporary?
- Are you looking for a fixer or move-in ready?
- What locations are you considering?
- Are you looking for a single-family or multi-family/townhome? Open to condos?
- Are you looking for certain amenities nearby like a park, lake, restaurants, grocery store, etc.?
- What is your price point?
- When would you like to close?
- What is your timeline for moving?
Speaking of timelines, let’s briefly touch on how long it takes to close from an accepted offer. If you go under contract on a property with financing the typical timeline to closing is about 30-35 days in the Denver area. Closing can be expedited or extended a little depending on the situation and needs of the seller or buyer, and can particularly be expedited if you are buying with cash (no financing). Given how quick the market is moving right now though, I always encourage my clients to be prepared to move as quickly as possible and remain flexible to get the deal done or to be competitive in a multiple offer situation (which is happening a lot given our low inventory!).
Time to go Shopping!
Now that you know where you stand financially and I have a better understanding of your goals – we are ready to search for properties that fit your needs. At this point, I recommend that you have your pre-approval letter at the ready (or proof of funds if you’re purchasing all cash) as we’ll need to submit it with any offers we move forward with. This helps us submitted an offer quickly and easily when we find the right property.
As your buyer’s agent, I will source all available or coming soon options by creating a search via the MLS system so that you receive properties directly that fit your criteria. Also, as a MODUS Real Estate agent, I also have access to off-market opportunities that we can review. I will manage all communication and outreach to each listing agent to centralize the process for you. This way, you don’t have to do any work and I’ll be the only agent you deal with directly. This is how I represent you and your needs best from start to finish. Always remember if you are looking at homes online and like anything just send the property address or listing link my way and I’ll handle the rest.
Make an Offer
We found a property that you’re excited about. Now, let’s submit an offer!
I will take your pre-approval letter and draft up an offer. As part of this process, we will review comparables in the neighborhood along with market analytics. This data will help us land on a strong initial offer that you feel comfortable with and that puts you in a great position to get accepted. I best advice I can give during this phase is don’t assume what a seller will respond with, you never know! Every seller is in a different situation and has their own motivations. All we can do is our homework on market trends, look at comps and put our best foot forward. Sometimes you’ll receive a counter, which we’ll discuss before resubmitting a second offer.
Once we have an accepted offer, you are under contract and the timeline to closing kicks off which includes earnest money deadline, title, loan and credit and the due diligence period (home inspection, appraisal, etc.). I will be with you every step of the way to ensure you understand what the next step is and that no deadlines are missed. I will also remain the main point of content to the seller’s agent so that everything is streamlined for you.
As we approach closing day, I will work closely with your mortgage lender and the title company to get all documents ready and clear to close. When we arrive at closing all parties are available, and buyers/sellers sign off on all relevant documentation for the closing to officially happen and ownership of the property to be transferred to you. Closing can take up to an hour or two, so I always suggest you take the day off or at least half the day off from work so that you are not stressed and can focus on this very exciting life milestone! Congratulations, you are now a homeowner!
I take pride in helping my clients navigate the Denver real estate market, which can be challenging – purchasing a home, whether it’s your first, for investment or your forever home is a major purchase. Don’t hesitate to reach out to me to discuss your needs and how I can best support you in your home search.