At the end of every show, Deborah asks listeners to call her at (719) 641-1357 to start the process of home ownership and to ask questions. Today, she discusses a few of those questions.
- What difference does it make whether I hire a local or out-of-town Realtor? First, a local Realtor knows the area and subareas. Second, a local Realtor belongs to the local association, giving them access to the Century Lockbox program. This program is great because it provides Realtors with an app that allows access to homes that provides real-time information about who is in your home and at what time. Providing sellers with an extra degree of protection.
- What’s the difference between a Real Estate Agent and Realtor? Well, for starters, both designations mean a person has taken the Real Estate Agent Exam and the State exam. A Realtor goes one step further and agrees to abide by a local, state, and national Code of Ethics (you can find the Code of Ethics here: nar.realtor/about-nar/governing-documents/the-code-of-ethics) You can also visit Realtor.com or call the Pikes Peak Area Realtors at (719) 633-7718 to get more information about the differences.
- If I move into an area that has an HOA, do I have to belong to it? Short answer is “Yes!” A homeowner’s association (HOA) and their covenants are attached to the property, not the homeowner. Information about whether or not a home is in an HOA community can be found on the MLS. You’ll want to discuss with your Realtor about your preference.
- How do you qualify for a home loan? You’ll want to check with three different lenders to see what their fees are and how much you qualify for. Mortgage lenders will pull credit reports, job history, paystubs, taxes, etc. to determine your qualifications and amounts they are willing to lend you. Deborah has a list of lenders that she frequently works with and also highly recommends Ryan Herbig of American Liberty Mortgage (719-228-6055).
- How can I prevent anyone who doesn’t qualify from seeing my home? First, an experienced Realtor will generally not show homes to someone who has not pre-qualified. But newer Realtors might not yet have the experience to know this. Once your home is listed, it can be shown to prospective buyers. However, if there is a legal reason for certain, specific people to not be allowed in your home (such as a restraining order), there are things your listing agent can do.
- Can I pack my boxes and leave them in the garage? Please don’t. It’s a big mistake because a lot of people want to see the garage to make sure their vehicles, tools, etc. will fit. It is far better to rent a storage unit than to kill the deal by having boxes in your garage.
- Do I have to take family photos off the wall? Not necessarily. Family photos and pictures of pets show that their looking at more than a house…it has been a treasured home. However, if you have intimate or “boudoir” photos, these are extremely intimate and make prospective homebuyers uncomfortable, and you’ll need to take those down for showings.
- What’s more important, area or school district? This is a question best left up to the homebuyer, so have a conversation with your Realtor to discuss the pros and cons of where to buy your home.
- How do I decide on a new home builder in a new development? Take your Realtor with you when you go look because they will be able to tell you what they do and do not like about certain things. They’ll also be able to let you know about their previous working history with the builder. You will also want to run an internet search on the builders to see what people are saying about the builders and the homes they offer.
Deborah enjoys answering your questions and interacting with people! If you have other questions or are interested in finding a home, call Deborah at (719) 641-1357. Plus, check out the cityofcs.com for more information about buying homes, the Colorado Springs area, and so much more.