As your partner and ally in the buying process, I preview properties,
show you selected homes or lofts, write an offer, and negotiate
on your behalf. Once you are under contract, I’ll continue
to assist you from inspection to appraisal until we meet at the
closing table and you receive the keys to your new place!
First, we dialogue — you talk, I listen. Second, we select
properties that fit your criteria and budget — from the multi-listing,
the Internet, and other sources. Third, we tour — you look,
I listen and observe. Fourth, we dialogue some more — your
impressions and feedback are crucial in narrowing the field. Fifth,
we tour more properties — we tour until we find just the right
“Nina found the perfect oasis in the
city for us, and she's a joy to work with. We recommend her to everyone.”
~ Lydia, writer
The Purchasing Process
This section will familiarize you with the overall steps involved
with purchasing a home. I provide links to helpful websites and
encourage you to peruse them. For experienced buyers, these resources
are a refresher; for first timers, they’re invaluable.
Get a Loan
An important first step in finding a home is to know your price
range. In the Denver area, there are many wonderful neighborhoods
and different price points. Assuming you want a loan, talking to
a Lender early is the process is helpful. You can get a better picture
of your financial leverage and gain a better understanding of the
criteria for loan approval.
Here are some of the things your Lender will do:
Run a credit report to make sure there are no surprises in
your credit history and see what your credit rating is.
Analyze your current financial situation: where the money comes
from and where it goes to.
Assess how the home purchase will affect your budget.
Aspects of the Process:
“Pre-Qual” Letter or “Lender letter”
Your lender will write a pre-qual letter stating that based on what
you have told him/her over the phone, you are prequalified for “x”
dollars. This letter is sufficient to accompany an offer to buy
a property, but it is not a loan approval or loan commitment.
After you've gauged your financial situation and spoken with a Lender
a “pre-qual letter”, it's time to shop around for a
mortgage that suits your needs. A mortgage is a loan which will
be secured by the property you are purchasing. There are also many
different types of mortgages, such as an “ARM”, 15-
and 30-year fixed, second mortgages etc.
The mortgage company will help you determine the most suitable
financial arrangement for you: perhaps buying a house with no money
down, or obtaining the lowest interest rate, or finding the right
time-frame in which to pay off this loan. I suggest that you review
online resources for more information. Use this mortgage
calculator to help estimate your monthly payment.
Gather items such as: tax returns for the last three years,
current pay stubs, records of paid off credit history, and any
supplemental income. If self employed you will need business records
and tax returns for the last three years.
Do not incur any new debts. Mortgages are based on debt-to-income
ratios (the amount you pay monthly versus the amount you bring
in) and a new debt can lower your chances of obtaining the mortgage.
“Loan Approval” or “ Loan
After an evaluation of your credit history, work history, assets
and liabilities (debts), your lender will approve you for a specified
loan amount. One of the stipulations will be that the property appraises
at a level high enough to justify the loan, so the lender will hire
an appraiser to ascertain the fair market value of the home you
hope to buy. Once the appraisal is complete, the loan request goes
to under-writing. Final approval and loan commitment can take ten
days to a month. In making the loan commitment the financial institution
states that it is willing to lend you the funds necessary to purchase
After finding the right property, we’ll put together an offer
— a document that includes your offer price, your terms and
conditions, and mortgage information about your loan. Along with
this offer, you will supply a “Lender Letter” from your
lender stating you are pre-qualified for the purchase price plus
an Earnest Money Check. This check is proof of your “earnestness”
— or seriousness in purchasing the home.
After the offer has been accepted, we begin our “due diligence”
in buying the home. This includes:
Having the house or loft appraised: An appraisal is an opinion
of the dollar value of the home you want to purchase. Virtually
every lender requires an appraisal before the loan is approved.
The Lender hires the appraiser. (No appraisal is necessary for
a cash transaction.)
Having the property inspected: An inspection evaluates the
structural and mechanical condition of a property. You hire an
inspector. I can recommend competent ones.
Reviewing the title work and Public Records
Reading and accepting any Home Owners Association (HOA) Rules
and Regulations and other non-public records.
Reviewing your closing costs: These are charges paid to different
entities associated with your home purchase. They are usually
2 - 2.5% of the total sales price of a property. Closing costs
may include: application fees, appraisal fee, county taxes, credit
report, discount points, documentation fee, escrow fees, homeowners'
association fees, loan fees, mortgage insurance, original fees,
tax registration and title insurance premium. Your Lender can
specify in advance all the closing fees.