Buyer Tips Category

How To Make A Buyer Happy in the Kitchen

9972204_sThe kitchen is truly the heart of the home and Realtor Magazine’s recent buyers survey proved that.

We always love peaking inside a homebuyer’s brain so here’s a look into what features are important to buyers this year in the kitchen.

56% wanted new appliances and of those 76% got it
Stainless appliances are by far the most desirable appliances in the Boulder area.

50% wanted an eat-in kitchen and of those 89% got it
Eat-in kitchens are so perfect for families. Lots of our buyers have this feature on their wish list.

42% wanted a kitchen island and of those 75% got it

39% wanted granite countertops and of those 75% got it
How about a kitchen island topped with granite? Bingo!

Happily, new appliances and granite countertops are relatively inexpensive and fairly easy to have installed. That’s good news if you are thinking of upgrading your kitchen. These are nice features for you to enjoy now and it makes your kitchen more desirable for buyers in the future.

Want to know more about the new listings that come on the market every day in the Boulder Valley?  Then sign up for our free email alerts.  Its free, easy and comes to your email box every day there is a new listing that meets your customizable criteria.  Just click here to get started.



Can I Use Gift Money for My Downpayment?

Gift Money for DownpaymentFirst time home buyers usually work hard to save up enough money for their downpayment.  It takes a focused, serious effort to put away 20% for a downpayment and we say “Congratulations” if you’ve done just that.  But some of our home buyers are realizing the low interest mortgages are just too tempting to pass up even though they don’t quite have their downpayment saved in full.

Its not uncommon for them to ask us “Can my mom/dad/grandparents give me money so I can buy this house?”

And the answer is Yes – if you follow a few carefully documented steps.

When you accept a downpayment gift please don’t randomly deposit the money into any old bank account.  There is a 3-step process for accepting a cash downpayment gift and if you follow the steps exactly your mortgage underwriter should have little problem approving your loan.  This 3-step process is the same for all loan types – conventional, FHA, VA or other. Read the rest of this entry »

UPDATE: Buyers Advice in an Escalating Market

742 Wildrose Way, LouisvilleAs promised we have an update for you on the escalating seller’s market in Louisville.  Buyers have been flocking to listings in Louisville and if the homes are reasonably well cared for and priced right sellers can probably expect multiple offers, most with escalation clauses, within a few days of going live on the market.  We posted about several of these properties last month and two have competed the sales process so the closing price is now public information that we can share with you.

742 Wildrose Way

Jeff showed this home to our clients only hours after it went live on the MLS.  The number of buyers and agents in the house while we were there made it look like some kind of party was about to start.  Our buyers really like this home and Jeff wrote an offer to buy and included an escalation clause, with their financial limit carefully factored into the offer.  Jeff’s prediction was the house would sell for $20,000-$25,000 over asking price.  You can read the full blog post here. Sellers signed a contract after only 3 days with a closing price of $530,000 based on a $509,000 asking price  That is a $21,000 escalation over asking price. Read the rest of this entry »

New-built single family homes coming to Louisville

New-build homes coming to LouisvilleLooking for something brand new in Louisville?  Your wait is almost over!

Markel Homes has made the first 26 single-family lots available in their Phase II of the North End residential development in Louisville.  Phase II plans call for about 140 homes,  80 of which will be single family homes and 60 town homes and lofts.  You can watch construction start on the model homes and first speculative homes in early August along the north side of South Boulder Road to just east of Highway 42. Model homes are expected to be ready for showing by the end of 2013 with new owners moving in by first-quarter of 2014.

The homes will range in size from 1,600 to 3,000 finished square feet and some will have unfinished basements bringing the total square footage to 2,300 to 4,000 square feet.  Prices are forecast to be Read the rest of this entry »

6 Tips for Making An Offer a Seller Can’t Refuse

9085229_sIn this tight market sellers are often getting multiple offers on their homes – IF they are priced right, in good a location and well kept.   That’s good news for sellers but can cause anxiety for buyers.

The good news for our buyers is we have years of experience representing both buyers and sellers over the past decade.  This gives us a clear understanding of what each side wants out of a contract.  Potential homeowners represented by a Realtor who exclusively brokers for buyers is missing out on this critical insight into the seller’s point of view.

Here are our 6 tips for making an offer a seller can’t refuse:

1.  Get pre-approved vs pre-qualifed.

It’s an important distinction. Having a mortgage lender pre-approve you means he or she has verified your income and reviewed all your credit reports to determine that you can indeed afford the payments on the mortgage for a specific amount.  It’s a more in-depth process and shows strength in your ability to get the financing needed to buy the home.

2. Make your first offer your best offer.

Now is not time to test the waters with a low offer.  Its unlikely you’ll get a second chance to sweeten the deal and you’ll probably be left in the wake of the successful buyers.   But don’t just go in swinging either. Read the rest of this entry »

In Superior, CO Location Can Make or Break the Deal

While out with home buyers this weekend we found a beautifully updated, contemporary home exactly in their price range.   At first we all got excited as it had “the kitchen”  with a center island, granite counters and stainless appliances and the hardwood floors were gleaming throughout the open floor plan.

It was a gem for sure.

Excitedly we  stepped out onto the deck to admire the advertised mountain views and that’s when we saw it.  The fence line of this tiny backyard came face to face with the backside of a storage lot full of old campers, rusty machinery and an old school bus.  Once you looked over the top all the rusty metal, the dilapidated mobile home and the neglected buildings  you could indeed see the mountains.  But the mountain view could not hold your eye as it was the wreckage just over the little fence that held your attention. Read the rest of this entry »

Buyers Advice in an Escalating Market

742 Wildrose Way Louisville COBuyers are flocking to brand new listings in Louisville.  Yesterday I showed this home at 742 Wildrose Way after it had been on the MLS for only a few hours.  By evening the sellers had multiple contracts to consider – my client’s included.

This home was in terrific shape, it had been well cared for, nicely staged, and in the popular Centennial neighborhood of Louisville.  Its an easy walk to Coal Creek Elementary School and Louisville’s Rec Center.  Harper Lake and Davidson Mesa Open Space are only a few short blocks away.

The kitchen had stainless appliances and slab granite.  The hardwood floors were gleaming and the main floor family room opened out onto a big deck and yard.  It was no wonder there were so many buyers looking at this home.

Writing contracts in these high demand conditions takes Read the rest of this entry »

Face Time for Louisville Home Buyers

Jeff showing houses via Face Time on his iPhoneYesterday I showed one of Louisville’s newest listings to some out-of-state clients.  As luck would have it the potentially perfect home popped up on their Listing Alerts email the day after they flew back home. Fortunately I could still show it to them via Face Time on my iPhone.

Technology like the Listing Alerts and Face Time can be a fantastic advantage for my buyers and I’m determined to use every possible tool in my toolbox to help my clients find their perfect home.

If having timely notifications of all the newest listings is important to you too then please sign up for my Listing Alerts email service.  Its free, confidential and you personally manage the criteria.  Once you are registered you’ll get an email announcing every new home for sale that matches your personal search details.  If you see something interesting, call me and I’ll set up an immediate showing. Read the rest of this entry »

What Does “Average Days to Contract” Mean?

Superior Homes Average 6 Days to Under ContractRealtors and news reporters often talk about the average number of days to contract as if everyone knows what it means.  This statistic is a great indicator of how the real estate market is moving and since its been mentioned in the news lately I thought I’d take a minute and explain it to you here.

The Average Days to Contract statistic tells us how fast or slow homes are selling.  It tracks the actual number of calendar days from the moment a home is listed for sale on the MLS (Multiple Listing Service) to the day the contract negotiation is finalized and both buyer and seller have signed the contract.

This statistic is a great one to watch because its clean and simple.  It only tracks how long it takes for a house to “go under contract”.  The shorter the number of days the faster the market is moving. Read the rest of this entry »

3 Steps to Successful Negotiations

12161928_sI get lots of real estate related questions throughout the course of my week and I thought I’d post them every now and then just in case its something you are thinking about too.

Here’s a good one about how to navigate the negotiations required for buying a home.

Q:  I’d like to buy my own home but I’m feeling overwhelmed about all the negotiations involved in the process.  Can you help?

A:  The goal of every real estate transaction I represent is to find a win-win agreement for both parties.  If buyers and sellers both feel they have reached an equitable agreement the whole process flows much smoother.

I’ve received specialized training in real estate negotiations and earned the designation of Certified Negotiation Expert. This training has helped me negotiate dozens and dozens of successful real estate deals.

Here are a few tips to help you feel like a negotiation pro. Read the rest of this entry »

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