Dec. 5, 2019

Is A Bigger House Within Your Budget?

Steps to owning a bigger home

 

At this time of year, families come together to celebrate the season. This is also a time when many recognize that their homes are just not quite big enough to comfortably host all of their guests and loved ones. Are you one of those homeowners dreaming for a large space to call home?

The good news is that you may have enough equity in your current home to move up. According to the 2019 Q3 U.S. Home Equity and Underwater Report by ATTOM Data Solutions,

  • "14.4 million residential properties in the U.S. were considered equity rich, meaning that the combined estimated amount of loans secured by those properties was 50% or less their estimated market value."

This means that one in four of the 54 million mortgaged homes in the U.S. have at least 50% equity. If these homeowners decide to sell, they can use that equity towards the purchase of a new home.

The National Association of Realtors released their 2019 Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers showing,

  • "This year, home sellers cited that they sold their homes for a median of $60,000 more than they purchased it, up from $55,500 the year prior. This accounted for a 31% price gain, up from 29% the year prior."

Here's the equity gain breakdown based on the number of years that the homeowner lived in their homes:Home Equity ChartIf you're one of the many homeowners with dreams of owning a larger home, let's get together and discuss options. Working with a trusted advisor to find out how much equity you have is a great 1st step of the plan in motion to owning that dream home. Give us a call today, (720) 305-0757.

 

 

Dec. 2, 2019

Is your home priced to sell immediately?

Price your home correctly to sell fast and best priceEager buyers are searching for their dream homes and pricing your home right is one of the most important things you can do.

According to CoreLogic, home values have risen over 6% over the past 2 years, but have started to slow to 3.5% over the last 12 months. By this time next year, CoreLogic predicts home values will be 5.4% higher.

With prices slowing from their previous pace, homeowners must recognize that pricing their home a little over market value to "leave room for negotiations" will dramatically decrease the number of buyers who will see their listing. 

Instead of the trying to "win" the negotiation process with one buyer, price your home so that demand is higher. By doing so, you will not be negotiating with a buyer over the price, but will instead have multiple buyers competing with one another over the house.

The secret is making sure that your house is priced to sell immediately. That way, your home will be seen by most potential buyers, selling at a great price and before other homes (and competition) hit the market. 

If you're debating on listing your house for sale, let's discuss how to appropriately price your home and maximize your exposure. Give True Realty a call today @ (720) 305-0757.

 

 

Nov. 25, 2019

Many Are Wrong About Down Payments

Many potential buyers shy away from the real estate market because they’re uncertain about the buying process – particularly when it comes to qualifying for a mortgage. For many, the mortgage process can be overwhelming and scary, but it doesn't have to be!

Many buyers (more than 62%) are wrong about a down payment and many think that they need 20% down in order to purchase a home. They also often think that they need to wait several years to to buy their dream home. 

The truth: 32% of current U.S. homeowners placed 5% or less down on their home.

Downpayment history

In order to qualify, you'll need a down payment, (the average down payment for homes last year was 5% with many putting down 3% or less), a steady income and a solid credit history. Once you are ready to apply, are are 5 steps that Freddie Mac suggests to follow:

 

Home Loan Process

 

Unfortunately, the lack of knowledge is keeping many motivated buyers on the sidelines. Don't let this happen to you and your family. Give True Realty a call today to discuss your options, (720) 305-0757.

Nov. 24, 2019

Economic Recovery

 

US Economy

The economy is currently experiencing the longest recovery in our nation’s history. The stock market has hit record highs, while unemployment rates are at record lows. Home price appreciation is beginning to re-accelerate. This begs the question: How long can this economic recovery last?

The Wall Street Journal Survey of Economists recently called for an economic slowdown (recession) in the near future. The most recent survey, however, now shows the economists are pushing that timetable back. When asked when they expect a recession to start, 42.5% of the economists in the previous survey projected between now and the end of 2020. The most recent survey showed that percentage drop to 34.2%. Here are the most current results:

When will the next recession hit

Like the economists surveyed by the WSJ, most experts are still predicting a recession will likely occur sometime in the next few years. However, many are pushing back the date for the economic slowdown. Real estate is impacted by the economy (and the consumer’s belief in the strength of the economy). The fact that most economic experts are calling for the recovery to continue through 2020 means the housing market will also remain strong for the foreseeable future. It's still a great time to sell your home and inventory is low. Winter is a great time to list. Give us a call today to discuss options and see if now is the best time for your personal situation. We will offer free, non-obligatory and honest advice. Call today - (720) 305-0757.

Buyers Are Looking For Homes. Are You Ready To List?

 

Nov. 23, 2019

Ready To List Your Home

Is it time to sell your home

 

Buyers are looking, are you ready to list your home?

The inventory on the market today is low, particularly among existing homes in the entry and mid-level tiers of the market. Homes for sale are hovering well below the 6-month supply typically found in a more normal market, as shown in this graph:

With inventory being one of the biggest housing market challenges, finding a starting home isn't easy. Q3 Housing Trends Report from the National Association of Home Builders, 68% of those searching for a home think their search will get harder or stay about the same over the next 12 months.

What does this mean for homeowners?

If you are thinking about selling your home, buyer demand is high. The majority of potential buyers who are still searching for their dream home are eager, willing and ready to buy, so  maybe it is time to list your house and make your move.

Bottom Line

With buyer demand as high as it is today, and inventory remaining low, it's the perfect time to reach out to determine if now is the right time for you to sell. Give True Realty a call today for your free, non-obligatory consultation. We'll give you an honest opinion and provide advice that will best serve you. Call today, (720) 305-0757.

 

 

Nov. 22, 2019

VA Home Loans

VA Home Loan  Benefits

This year marks the 75th year of VA Home Loan Benefit offerings through Servicemen's Readjustment Act, also knows as the GI Bill. Since 1944, this law created opportunities for all who have served our country and helped thousands of veterans to realize their dream of home ownership. 

Facts About VA Home Loans:

  • Nearly 24 million home loans have been guaranteed by the Veterans Administration
  • Nearly 82% of VA home loans are made with no down payment
  • The VA also provides grants to help seriously disabled Veterans purchase, modify, or construct a home to meet their needs. Last year VA provided 2,000 grants totaling $104 million.

Click here for more info.

Benefits of a VA Home Loan:

  1. No down payment
  2. No Private Mortgage Insurance
  3. Lower credit score requirements
  4. Limitation on closing costs
  5. Lower average interest rates

Click here for more info and here for additional info on loan fees.

For more information, or to find out how to qualify to use a VA Home Loan Benefit, give us a call to help navigate through the process. Call (720) 305-0757. Be sure to share this information to with those who can benefit from these opportunities.

 

 

Nov. 18, 2019

Holiday Safety Tips

tips on a safe home during the holidays

The holidays are busy with plans to visit family, decorating and shopping. Many plan to go out of town, leaving homes vulnerable. We have compiled a few tips for you to keep your home safe and secure over the holiday season, including maintaining your home for the cold weather and safety tips while you’re away.

HOLIDAY TRAVEL

If you’re planning on travelling through the holidays, keep your travel plans off social media. Social media networks are prime hunting grounds for those who are scoping out properties for ill will. Even with the highest level of security on your social media accounts you could be exposing yourself and your home and you’d be surprised who else may come to the realization that you’re out of town. While it is tough to avoid sharing this info and photos. Sometimes the criminal activity is committed by a not so unfamiliar acquaintance of a family member or friend. Save the photos for after return.

Before you go on vacation, alert the local police that you are will be leaving. They will often add an extra round of patrol in our neighborhood to keep an eye on things and check on your property. Even if there is no hint of suspicious activity, the sight of a police car in a neighborhood can be an effective deterrent to criminal activity.

Make your home “look” occupied. Use timer for your lights. Stagger the on and off in each room to mimic your natural behavior and leave curtains where they normally are. Don’t forget to unplug unnecessary items and adjust your thermostat.

Delegate someone that you trust for help to pick up your mail and newspapers and set out / bring in your trash cans. Nothing says “we’re not home” better than a trash can that sits out all week. Another obvious empty home is a driveway full of snow and no evidence of tire tracks. Ask a neighbor to shovel your driveway while your away.

Before you leave, make sure that your security system and smoke detectors are working properly. Refer to your home security booklet or website for specific instructions. To test your smoke detector, hold the test button for a few seconds until the siren sounds. If nothing happens, you probably need new batteries.

Protect your pipes from freezing while you are away. Water damage is the 2nd most filed insurance claims in the US, averaging nearly $10,000. Before you leave, open kitchen and bathroom cabinet doors that have exposed pipes and leave a drip going on faucets fed by exposed pipes. Set your thermostat to at least 55 degrees while you’re gone.

DECORATE SMARTLY

While Christmas Tree fires aren’t common, they do occur and tend to be more life-threatening than other home fires. Keep your live tree well hydrated and away from heat sources. Make sure that your tree has fresh green needles when you purchase it and cut at least 2 inches off before your place it in the stand. Make sure the lights are specifically for indoor use and keep the tree at least 3 feet from vents, fireplaces and candles. When decorating, make sure that your glass ornaments are not within reach of little ones and curious hands. This also applies to ornaments that resemble food as small ones will attempt to place those in their mouth.

Safely hang your outdoor lights with a sturdy ladder. Same rule applies indoors when adding the tree topper or décor that stretches above your reach. Take an extra second or two and grab something sturdy to stand on. When decorating the outside, make sure that you are using lights and electrical cords marked for outdoor use and check for cracks, exposed cords or frayed ends. To be sure not to overload an outlet and for information on how many strands of lights can safely be connected, visit Energy Today’s helpful tips.

We hope that you’ve found these tips to be helpful. If you are in need of assistance over the holidays, please reach out to True Realty @ (720) 305-0757. We have resources that could be of use, including ones that can help you decorate and maintain your home while you’re away.

Nov. 3, 2019

Price Your Home to Sell


How To Price Your Home To Sell

 

Whether you are listing your home for sale yourself or utilizing a real estate agent, it is always a good idea to think about how to price your house to sell. Pricing too high will turn potential buyers away and pricing too low will leave money on the table. How exactly do you determine what is the correct price for your home to sell?

 

Leave emotion out of it and compare it instead. Everyone feels that their home is the best due to the sentimental attachment to it. If you use that feeling of pride, you can easily price your home too high and quickly lose time on the market by turning away potential buyers. By comparing your home to similar homes around you that are currently for sale and have sold, you can quickly get a good idea as to what price market your home should be in. When comparing, you may be able to price your home higher if you have:

  • Extra features, such as a finished basement or attached garage
  • More bedrooms or bathrooms
  • A larger lot

The current market also affects comparisons. If there’s low market competition or if you’re selling in a seller’s market, you may be able to price your home more than your nearby comparisons. If you are in a neutral market, you can expect to sell around the price that your comparisons sold at. Then if you are in a buyers market, be sure to save some wiggle room when looking at your sold comparisons. You can still price around the same but expect more negotiations than you would receive in a seller’s market.

 

When you have determined around what price you want to be around, try to list your home in $5,000 to $10,000 increments. People naturally search in $5,00 to $10,000 increments. Also, if you stay $100 under the next $1,000, your price will come off as more appealing. People are naturally drawn towards a $9.99 price over a $10 price. Real estate works the same way. It’s nearly the exact same price but the lesser dollar amount at the beginning of the price makes the total price feel as if it’s significantly less. If you’ve determined that you want to list your home for $327,900, you have two options that will help you in your sale. Instead of $327,900, you can list at $329,900. You will likely get the same number of inquiries as you would with your initial number but you will also get $3,000 more which can be put into your pocket or go towards closing costs that you may have agreed to in negotiations. If you list your home for $324,900 instead of the $327,900, you will lose $3,000 but you will also open up your potential buyer pool which may help you sell your home faster. 

 

If you are lost at where to start or having trouble with finding comparisons due to circumstances such as living in a rural area or having an outdated market, you can always have a pre-appraisal done. Not only will this help you determine what to list your house for, but it will also help you sell at asking price due to having proof that your home is worth what you’re listing it for.

 

If you have been thinking about selling your home and are ready to take that next step, we'd be honored to chat. Give us a call @ (720) 305-0757. 




Posted in Selling
Oct. 30, 2019

Tips On Saving For A Down-payment

 

Tips On Saving For A Down Payment On Your Home

 

So you’re working on buying a home but lost as to how to get that down payment saved up. Maybe you’ve been trying to save but whatever you’ve run out of ideas past putting a bit of money into savings here and there. Regardless of what position you’re in, what ideas you’ve already tried, or how long you’ve been trying, here are some tips that will help you get that down payment into your savings.

 

First, let’s discuss the steps that you need to take before starting your down payment savings.

 

Step 1: Determine how much of a down-payment you need.

There are multiple factors that play into how much of a down payment that you will need to be saved. The easiest is what exact amount or percentage you would like to take off of the purchase price. For example, paying $60,000 down on $150,000 or 20% down on $400,000.

Two other factors can vary in every situation. What amount your lender is requiring you to put down and the cost of the home factoring into how large the down payment must be.

 

Step 2: Determine your time frame.

Do you have a specific time when you absolutely have to purchase your new home? How far out is your goal of owning a new home? Will you need to sell your current home before buying a new one? There may be many aspects that determine your time frame and each season of life will change those aspects so be sure to take into account how the future may change.

 

These two big steps will help you be more productive in saving your down payment since you will be working towards a defined goal instead of a general idea of a goal. Once you have created your down-payment goal, it’s time to start saving.

 

The first method to use when saving money is to set up an automated savings plan. This will automatically take a portion of your income each pay period and automatically place it into a savings account. An automated savings plan is an easy to use method since you only have to set it up once then let it do the saving for you. 

 

You may have the ability to put a large amount of your income aside every pay period or you may only have a little wiggle room (or none at all) in regards to your income. If you are only able to put a small amount of money into an automated savings plan or you’re not able to utilize that method, here are a few more to try out.

  • Pick up a side gig or pick up overtime at your current workplace.
  • Cut expenses from your budget, such as not eating out and getting rid of cable.
  • Instead of vacationing, stay home and put vacation money into savings.
  • Save everything from tax refunds, gifts, bonuses, etc.
  • Sell things that you don’t use or want anymore, such as clothing, home goods, etc.
  • Instead of putting money into your retirement plan, put that money into savings.
  • Borrow from your retirement plan. Check with HR to see if your company’s 401K has a profit-sharing plan.
  • Check into down-payment assistance programs. The FHA, Department of Rural Housing Services, the VA, and local housing authorities may have programs that you can benefit from. 

The biggest key in saving for your down payment is to be flexible but consistent. Life is always changing so one method that is working now may not work later in the year. Be flexible in finding different ways to save that works with your life’s current situation. If you find a method that works and life’s ever-changing ways does not affect it, be consistent with it and do not stop. Having consistency and flexibility will help encourage your savings plan to grow at a faster rate.

 

If you are ready to begin your journey towards saving for your down-payment and would like to set up a free one-on-one consultation, please give True Realty a call @ (720) 305-0757.

 

 

 

 

Posted in Buying
Oct. 28, 2019

Help kids ease into the upcoming move

Tips For Moving With Children

 

Sooner or later, families are faced with the prospect of moving. While the process can be disruptive for parents, moving with children is never easy no matter how much preparation you do. Here are some tips to help the move and transition easier on your kid(s).

 

When you are breaking the news of moving to kids, it is best to be as detailed as possible, to tell them the timeline of when things will be happening, and to answer all questions they may have to the best of your ability. The details will help them be less fearful of the unknowns of moving and the timeline will help prepare them for when to anticipate different events during the move.

 

Have them involved in the planning and let them make some choices. When kids are involved in the planning of the move, it gives them the feeling of having some sort of control in a situation where they will likely feel like they have none which may make life itself feel out of control. Involving them in decision making will also help with giving them stability in the situation.

 

Take them to visit the new home and the neighborhood. Let them walk around the neighborhood instead of just driving through it. Knowing where they are going will help the transition be less scary since it’s not an entirely new place that they’ve never been to before. Learn about the community if you’re leaving your current community. Look into different activities for them to participate in, parks to visit, and other things your kid(s) will enjoy. Visit the new school beforehand so that excitement builds and your child(ren) will look forward to their first day with their new teacher. Many schools will pair your child with another student to introduce them to others and help show them around. Seek out opportunities such as this and encourage your child to try something new at their new school. Might be a great time to venture into performing arts, woodworking and / or other specialty classes.

 

When moving with school-aged children or teenagers, visiting the old neighborhood and old friends (if possible) will help make the transition easier. Moving in the summer will also be easier for the child than moving during the school year.

 

Once you’ve made the move and are unpacking your new home, try to focus on the child’s room first. This will help them begin to feel at home faster by giving them a safe place where things are familiar to them. Also, try to maintain the same daily schedule that you had prior to the move. For example, keep bedtime and dinner at the same time of the day as they were prior to the move.

 

Allow teenagers the space to explore their surroundings. While children adapt at their own pace, experts state that it takes about 6 months for a child to adjust to their new home. Moving with a family may present challenges, good things always come from this sort of change. You’ll find that your family will grow closer and you might learn something new about one another. 

 

If you’re moving out of the Colorado area, know that True Realty is able to locate the best team for you to work with in your new / prospective location at no cost to you. Just give us a call @ (720) 305-0757.

 

 

 

 

Posted in Buying, Selling