7 Common Selling Doubts to Ignore and One to Consider

Monday, October 10th, 2016

Selling a house can be downright stressful. Here are seven such doubts that most sellers experience and should be ignored, and one to consider when placing your house on the market.

selling a home

  1. My home won’t sell. It’s not the right season.

The housing market doesn’t slow down in the fall or winter. In fact, some research suggests that this time of year is optimal to purchase a property. There are fewer buyers to compete with, sellers are motivated, and prices are generally lower.

  1. I need to do renovations in order to get it into selling condition

Many homeowners are embarrassed about their home’s condition when they first put it on the market. What is more embarrassing, however, is missing out on an opportunity to capitalize on your investment. Selling a home requires work and that work directly correlates to the sale price of your home.

  1. I don’t like strangers walking through my house when I still live here

Making an offer to buy a home: Art or Science?

Friday, August 12th, 2016

Have you ever wondered if making an offer to buy a home is an art or a science? The bottom line is that it is both. Nonetheless, for many, handling an offer can be a mysterious and frustrating process. There is an age-old saying that the seller thinks their home is worth the price of a castle, while the buyer wants to offer the value of a cabin. We work with both buyers and sellers in a number of different types of transactions.  Obviously, the advice we give for making an offer will differ depending on what your goals are, the market conditions, and the type of sale (a bank-owned property, a short sale, non-distressed sale, etc.). There are a number of fundamental principles that we can pass along. These fundamental principles are tied to affordability, market conditions, insight, and expertise. Always remember, “Knowledge is key.” Or, said another way, information is power.

making an offer


Using a Reverse Mortgage to Purchase a Home

Tuesday, July 5th, 2016

The other day, a client came into my office and asked me about a using a reverse mortgage to purchase a property. They said they had heard some negative things from relatives but had recently seen articles that painted a very different picture.  They asked for my opinion. I told them that it is critically important to hire a trusted mortgage advisor. We set about to get the facts and become educated on using a reverse mortgage for purchase.

reverse mortgage

We made contact with Reverse Mortgage Planner Kent Montavon from Fairway Independent Mortgage Corporation. He and his business partner Bill Niehus help buyers and homeowners exclusively with reverse mortgages. They arrange reverse mortgages that are called Home Equity Conversion Mortgages (HECM). It turns out that, for folks over 62 years of age, reverse mortgages could become a “go to” product for purchasing or refinancing a home. Here is what I learned:

Millennials Still Living with Parents

Friday, September 18th, 2015

family quarrels with the husbands mother

According to a new Pew Research Center analysis of U.S. Census Bureau, more millennials are living with their parents today than at the depth of the recession, despite an improved job market.

The amount of young adults living in their parents’ homes has increased from 24 percent in 2010 to 26 percent in the first quarter of 2015.

During that same period, the unemployment rate for adults ages 18 to 34 dropped from 12.4 percent in 2010 to 7.7 percent this year.

Despite the fact that there are 3 million more Americans in the 18-34 range now than there were in 2007 (Millennials now outnumber Baby Boomers), the number who are living independently has fallen from 42.7 million in 2007 to 42.2 million today. This is directly related to the fact that because of skyrocketing home/apartment prices and wage stagnation, millennials are being priced out of urban living and home ownership.

Denver in Rent Territory

Wednesday, July 15th, 2015

House RentalIs it better to buy or rent a home in the Denver market right now?

According to a recent study by the Beracha, Hardin & Johnson Buy vs. Rent Index, Denver is in rent territory, which means that property pricing is out-pacing rents. At the same time, depending on your tax situation, credit score, amount of down payment available, a mortgage could be less than rent. That is why it is extremely important to work with a knowledgeable Reatlor®.

The study looks at 23 U.S. markets and determines whether it’s smarter to buy or rent.

Denver joins Dallas and Houston as the three top markets in rent territory, according to the study. However, keep in mind that if you want to rent, it’s still not going to be cheap. Last month, house rental rates jumped 12 percent compared with the same quarter a year earlier.

Millennials: Priced Out of Home Ownership

Monday, July 13th, 2015

Denver has been ceaselessly trying to lure millennials with projects like the Regional Transportation District’s rail system and transit-oriented developments. Why? Millennials now outnumber Baby Boomers. Also, Millenials are the most diverse population group.

According to a new analysis by Bloomberg Business, there’s a big problem. Because of skyrocketing home/apartment prices and wage stagnation, millennials are being priced out of urban living and home ownership.

In Bloomberg’s “The 13 Cities Where Millennials Can’t Afford a Home”, Metro Denver is the 12th area where the typical millennial worker doesn’t earn enough to buy a home.Capture

Bloomberg used U.S. Census Bureau, Zillow Group Inc. and Bankrate.com data to calculate the earnings gap (defined as the difference between the median home price and the median millennial salary) in 50 major metros across the country.

The U.S. Census Bureau lists the median annual salary of 18-34 year olds in Denver at $39,492. With the median price of a home in metro Denver standing at over $361,000, the absolute minimum salary required for purchasing a home would be $42,112. That’s a $2,620 earnings gap.

Job Seeking Millennials

Monday, June 29th, 2015


For those who are determined to live here anyway, there is hope.

A new NerdWallet study analyzed the best places for millennial job seekers in Colorado, and found that jobs are plentiful across multiple sectors.

The financial website ranked 10 Colorado cities as the best for millennials seeking a job:

  1. Evans
  2. Englewood
  3. Golden
  4. Louisville
  5. Boulder
  6. Broomfield
  7. Denver
  8. Lone Tree
  9. Littleton
  10. Fort Collins

Eight of these communities are in metro Denver, and five of them are home to an RTD rail station. Two more cities outside the immediate metro area are within a 90 minute drive of downtown Denver. “Denver holds great pull as not only the state capital, but also as the largest city in a 600-mile radius,” the study said.

To compile the study, NerdWallet looked at three key metrics:

  1. Are there jobs in the area?

Monthly Rents Keep Climbing

Tuesday, May 27th, 2014

Thousands of apartment renters across the Denver area are getting the news that their next rent check will cost a little more.

The increasing supply of new apartments in metro Denver isn’t yet affecting low vacancies and increasing rents.

Average monthly rents climbed for the third consecutive quarter to $1,074 across metro Denver. Every county in metro Denver (Adams, Arapahoe, Boulder/Broomfield, Denver, Douglas and Jefferson) saw its average rent climb within the last month.

If you’re tired of rent increases at your current location or want to move but will experience a spike in rent, consider the benefits of buying a home instead. You may be able to secure a great rate and end up paying the equivalent or less in monthly payments as you build equity in a home. Renting can be a more affordable option for the short term, but renters still have to face rising rental costs year after year. Check out Trulia’s rent vs. buy calculator to find out what’s better for you.

Closing At The End Of August? Plan Ahead For Labor Day Weekend.

Friday, August 17th, 2012

Labor Day ClosingPlanning to make a late-August purchase closing?  Keep an eye on your calendar.  The last Friday of this month coincides with Labor Day Weekend, which may make for a complicated, end-of-month closing.  If you’re planning to close on, or around, August 31, 2012, plan ahead.  Leaving anything to the proverbial last minute could delay your closing by hours in a best-case scenario, and by days in a worst-case.

This is because Labor Day is among the most popular vacation times of the year in the real estate, title and mortgage industries and, as Labor Day approaches, it’s increasingly hard to resolve “issues” related to settlement — not all parties are readily available for resolution.  A small closing issue, therefore, can spiral into a major one when you can’t reach your attorney; or, when the title company is short-staffed, for example.

For home buyers currently under contract, and for homeowners with a refinance in-process, the best defense at a time like this is a good offense.  Get proactive with the mortgage process.

Home Purchasing Power Jumps To New Highs

Friday, August 3rd, 2012

Purchasing power grows in Q2 2012

With mortgage rates down to all-time lows, you can buy a lot more home for your money.  Home affordability is at an all-time high.

According to last week’s Freddie Mac mortgage rate survey, the average 30-year fixed rate mortgage has dropped to 3.62% nationwide.  This is down from 4.08% in March, and down from 4.60% from one year ago.  Mortgage rates are “on sale”.

Falling mortgage rates can make one of two changes to the way a home buyer looks at properties.  They can either make a given home’s monthly housing payment that much more affordable to a buyer, or they can expand that buyer’s home purchasing power to a higher, maximum price point.  Since July 2011, that maximum price point increase has been significant.

Assuming a principal + interest payment of $1,000 per month and a 30-year loan term, a category that includes 30-year fixed rate mortgages and most adjustable-rate mortgages, here’s a maximum loan size comparison of the last 12 months :