There are many different steps in a successful real estate transaction!
Deciding to Move
The decision to move is a big decision—there are many components that come into deciding to move—work, life changes, better schools—all of these play a big factor. We fully understand that you aren’t just buying a house but you are moving. We love being a part of this process and understand that the ups and downs of buying a home. We are here to make the process as smooth as possible so you can get about your life again. Buying a home can be all consuming – here are some experiences you can expect.
Where Do We Move?
The neighborhood you move to can have a big impact on your life. Are schools important to you? What type of architecture do you like? Do you want a newer home or a more urban home? There are many questions that need to be answered by you—drive around the neighborhood, look and see what it is like during the day and night. There are great websites that discuss local neighborhoods, go to Yelp and Google + to read reviews about local venues. Immersing yourself in the neighborhood gives you a great feeling of what it is actually like. We know a lot about the Metro Denver neighborhoods and can give you the information we have.
Before you start looking, talk to a lender and find out the price range you qualify for and what you are comfortable paying. Most lenders have a pre-qualification letter they will give you that we will need for submitting offers. If you do this part of the process upfront it avoids heartache in the end by finding a house you simply can’t afford. We have several lenders we work with in Denver—we would be happy to give you their contact information and you can choose the one that fits you best.
Watching the Market
Now we know a few neighborhoods that interest you and know how much you can spend—it is time to start looking at the available inventory and seeing what you need in a house. How many bedrooms, bathrooms—do you want a basement, does it need a garage? Are these reasonable in the neighborhood you like? Are there other options—what is necessary and what is an area where you can compromise? Sign up for a saved search on our website—it is free and you will receive a daily email with the latest houses for sale that meet your criteria. Our website is directly linked to the MLS and is up-to-date.
Do You Need to Sell Your Current Home?
If you need to sell your current home before buying your next home—read the seller’s process now and we can still look at properties and keep the buying process going.
Going Out to Look at Homes
Compile a list of houses you want to see and let’s go! We recommend keeping it to 8-10 per day, other than that it can get confusing. Keep a notebook and document what you see, we will provide you listing sheets, so feel free to take notes on those so you can refer back. Keep refining your list of wants and needs and narrow it down to the short list. Usually buyers “know” when they find the “right” house—it has a certain feel to it.
Preparing An Offer
Once you have found a home you love, we will run a list of comparable homes that have recently sold in the area. This tells us if the home is priced fairly or needs some work. We generally give you different ranges—with aggressive offers or I really want this house offers.
All of our offers are electronic so we will right in the dates and amounts, discuss the different options with you about closing costs, concessions, pricing the home and the dates that work best for you and your situation. We will be in contact with the Realtor for the house so they know an offer is coming—this paves the way for the negotiations that will follow.
Negotiating The Offer
The seller has three options with your offer: accept, reject, or make a counteroffer. A counteroffer is a rejection of a buyer’s offer with a simultaneous offer from the seller to the buyer. Discuss the possibilities with your REALTOR®, your attorney, and a tax adviser. This is one of the opportunities where we can negotiate for you and come to terms that will help you move to the next stage of your move.
In most residential sales, Colorado law requires that the seller deliver a seller’s disclosure notice to the buyer on or before the effective date of purchase. This document provides important information about the seller’s knowledge of the condition of the property. We will receive a copy of the completed notice at time of offer or the specified deadline.
Lead-based paint disclosure
If the property was built before 1978, federal law requires that before a buyer is obligated under a contract to buy the property, the seller shall: 1) provide the buyer with a lead hazard information pamphlet (as prescribed by EPA); 2) disclose the presence of any known lead-based paint or hazard; 3) provide the buyer with a lead hazard evaluation report or records available to the seller; and 4) permit the buyer to conduct a risk assessment or inspection for the presence of lead-based paint or hazards. A contract for the sale of property built before 1978 must contain a statutorily prescribed Lead Warning Statement to the buyer. We will provide you with the forms necessary to comply with the law and will suggest procedures to follow in order to comply.
Accepting the Offer
Once you and the seller agree on terms and sign the contract, the ball starts rolling. You will need to get in touch with your lender and start the loan process, this could take some time so get in touch with them right away. During this time, we will also coordinate other arrangements to prepare for the final sale.
As part of the process, the title company may order a survey of the property and research the title, making sure the chain of title is clear. Clearing the title may require paying off liens–that is, any monetary claims against the property. Examples are: mechanic’s liens, unpaid state and federal tax liens, court judgments, and probate considerations (if a co-owner has died). The product of the title search can be in the form of title insurance, abstract of title, or certificate of title, depending on what is specified in the Contract to Buy and Sell.
Inspection and Repair
We will schedule an inspection of the house with you. You may hire an inspector to review many items in the property such as the structural components, mechanical items, electrical systems, and plumbing systems. The inspector will report the items that the inspector finds to be in need of repair. We will provide a copy of the inspection notice to the sellers and may ask them to complete certain repairs. An inspector is trained to see items and defects that are not obvious to you and your REALTOR®. We will ask for safety items to be repaired and review the inspection together carefully.This is another area where we will negotiate for you.
Closing the Deal
The sale formally ends at the closing table. In most transactions, the closing lasts less than an hour and often occurs at the title company office. A title company officer or escrow agent will preside and the sellers, sellers’ agent and of course your Realtor can all be present. Be sure to bring your driver’s license to the closing.
The sale actually consists of two transactions: 1) transferring the property to the buyer, and2)paying off the existing mortgage on the home. To transfer the property, the title company will present documents proving that you have the title. Proceeds of the sale may be disbursed at closing or shortly thereafter, once all the paperwork and verifications have been processed.
When you get your new house key, the sale is complete.
Now the real fun begins! BBQs, holidays, memories—all after you unpack!