Frequently Asked Questions
What items come with the property?
The general rule is, “If it has to be removed with a tool, it stays.” However, some items are specifically included in the contract. The drapes, window treatments, automatically stay. The refrigerator & washer/dryer do not come with the house, unless written into the contract. The stove, dishwasher, & any attached microwave or vent hood will stay, along with all light fixtures. If you have a question about a specific item, please don’t hesitate to ask!
How do we determine what to offer on a property?
To determine Fair Market Value, we will run a Comparative Market Analysis (CMA) on the property. This shows you what comparable properties in the same or similar neighborhoods have sold for recently, so this tells you what the property is worth. After we have that information, we will determine what to offer based on the time the property has been on the market, if they’ve made recent price reductions, whether it’s vacant or occupied, & whether or not there are other offers on the property.
What is an appraisal & how does it affect me?
Your lender will require that an appraisal is performed to verify that your purchase price is the Fair Market Value of the property. The appraisal is usually performed after we’ve had the property inspected, costs roughly $500, and is paid for at closing. The appraiser will use the same process we did when we ran a Comparative Market Analysis, so we very rarely have appraisal issues. If, however, the property doesn’t appraise for value, you have the option to terminate the contract. In many instances, we will try to renegotiate the price of the property to the appraised value.
When is the best time to buy?
In general, there is more inventory to choose from in the spring & summer, but there is more competition. During the fall & winter, prices are generally lower, but there is less inventory to choose from.
What happens if there is more than one offer on a home?
There are no laws governing multiple offer situations, but there is an industry standard: Typically, the listing agent will notify all parties that there are multiple offers on the property and will ask for each buyer’s “highest & best offer” by a certain time & date. We won’t know what others are offering and they won’t know what we’re offering. You will want to put together your highest offer price & we will tighten up the offer terms to make the offer as attractive as possible, without compromising your protections. We have the expertise to help structure your offer so that it will have the best chance of being accepted.
Should I get pre-approved for a mortgage?
While it’s not necessary to begin casually looking online, it’s definitely a good idea to get pre-approved before you begin physically looking at properties. Read more about pre-approval here.
How long does it take to buy a property?
The searching process varies from buyer to buyer, but it takes 30-45 days to close on your property after you’ve gone under contract.
How much are closing costs?
Most of your closing costs will be connection with your loan & pre-paid escrow charges (property taxes, insurance, & interest.) In general, closing costs are in the 1% to 2% range, but they do vary based on the type of loan you choose. This is one of the many reasons we recommend getting pre-approved early in the process. If you’re a cash buyer, closing costs are minimal; Generally less than $1,500.
Are schools important for resale?
Yes. Schools are important for resale. Many families live in the Denver foothills community and school ratings are important. You can check out the school ratings by visiting, www.GreatSchools.org.
Should I get a home inspection?
Absolutely! Your home inspector will go through the property with a fine tooth comb and tell you exactly what condition it’s in. You will find out if there are any repairs that need to be made immediately & what repairs you can expect in the future. Your inspector will check all major & minor systems: Foundation, plumbing, electrical, roof, HVAC, water heater, appliances, windows, structural integrity, & more. While the price will vary based on the size of your home, the inspection is in the $500 range (and is paid at the time of inspection.) After we’ve reviewed the inspection, we will typically ask for the seller to make reasonable repairs or for a repairs credit.
Should I get a well & septic inspection?
Many homes in the mountains have both well & septic systems and it is in your best interest to have them inspected. This will tell you if the depth of the well, how much water it produces and if the water is safe to drink. As for the septic system it will give you an idea of the age, condition and about how many years of the life the septic system has left. Wells & septic systems are also designed to only support a certain number of people. These inspections will let you know if the well & septic will support your size family and needs.
Are the sellers required to make repairs?
Sellers aren’t required to make any repairs, but reasonable sellers will agree to a reasonable repairs request or a credit for repairs. It’s important to view repairs in context. If you’re purchasing a newer home, you would expect it to be in near new condition. If you’re purchasing a 50 year old home, you would expect it to be safe & functional, but not to be new.
When and how much money do I need in order to make an offer & purchase a property?
It doesn’t cost anything to make an offer on a property, but you need to be prepared to write a check for the earnest money & option fee. The earnest money deposit is usually 1% of the purchase price and the option fee will be dependent upon the sales price (usually $200-$500.) The exact amount requested by the seller is defined in the MLS so we know what the seller is expecting.
What condition will the sellers leave the home in?
Unfortunately, the standard contract is pretty fuzzy on this topic. Generally, sellers will have the property “broom clean” at closing. If it’s important to you that the property be professionally cleaned prior to closing, we can add that to special provisions.
What is a Home Warranty? Do I need one?
In most transactions, a seller will credit you $400-$500 for a residential service contract (a home warranty.) If the property has a pool, they will credit you $700-$800, so that you get the additional pool coverage. A home warrant picks up what your homeowner’s insurance policy doesn’t cover. An insurance policy typically has a 1% deductible, so won’t cover small items like a stove, dishwasher, or air conditioner. A home warranty does cover these items, and typically with a deductible in the $50-$75 range. Home warranties are great to have, but they’re a hassle to deal with, should you call in a claim. They typically send a repairman out within 2 days, which can be a long time if your A/C goes out in the middle of August. Like any insurance or warranty company, they tend to try and cover as little as possible. So, when you Google different companies, you usually find bad reviews on all of them. If, after researching the home warranty, you prefer not to ask for one, we can always ask for a seller credit to your closing costs in the same amount a warranty would have cost ($400-$500.)
What is a Buyer’s Representation Agreement? Do I have to sign one?
A Buyer’s Representation Agreement is a written agreement between you and an agent that you will use that agent’s services to purchase a property for a certain period of time. This defines our professional relationship and outlines which type of agency I will have with you. If at any time you are not happy with my services just let me know and I will release you from the agreement. It’s that easy, no pressure.
Contact an Evergreen Colorado Real Estate Agent
To learn more about any Evergreen Colorado homes for sale or to receive email notifications when homes are listed for sale in Evergreen Colorado, call 303-218-6926 or contact an Evergreen Colorado REALTOR®.