What would be the homework I should do before scheduling any home showing?

Asked by Rms, Aurora, CO Tue Feb 12, 2008

I'm looking for a 2 B/BA Condo, and would be scheduling some visits for homeshowing. What would be the homework I should do before the same and what kind of information should I ask the agents/seller to know the best about the property? How does HOA comes in picture?

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Jim Welden, Agent, Greenwood Village, CO
Wed Feb 13, 2008
RMS - I would agree with Jason - I don't think you need to do much homework before beginning your search for a new home - are there questions you will have after finding a condo that might work for you? Absolutely, but no need to do a lot of research in advance of finding a home that works for you (price, location, size, floor plan, condition, etc) - otherwise, you may spend a lot of time researching info that will be a waste of time.

Once you do find a condo that you are excited about, you can either do the research on that condo in advance of making an offer or you could get it under contract before someone else purchases it. The Colorado Real Estate Commission contract to Buy and Sell gives you provisions that enable you to have time to inspect the home, do research on the HOA, examine the title, etc before closing so you will have time to do these items - especially with a condo or town home, you do want to research the HOA to make sure you understand the financial condition so that hopefully there will not be any surprises after closing (for example, a special assessment to paint the entire complex or to re-roof all of the buildings).

I would recommend visiting with a mortgage loan officer and getting pre-qualified before you begin your search so you know whether you can obtain any financing that might be needed and to see how much you can qualify for - no point in looking at homes that are more expensive than you can comfortably afford.

Also, find a Buyer's Agent that you are comfortable with - a buyer's agent will reduce the amount of time you will spend, increase your knowledge about the home buying process, and in just about all instances, you will not have to pay for the agent's services (because for homes that are in the MLS, the Seller has agreed to pay a fee for the Buyer's Agent - most For Sale By Owner's will also pay the fee for a Buyer's Agent). The agent can assist with the research, negotiate and be an advocate for you, and help you better understand whether pricing for a particular condo is reasonable. The agent can also provide names of reputable mortgage loan officer's, inspectors, and other professionals you may need as you go through the process of acquiring a new home. Buying a home is a major purchase and there are plenty of ways a Buyer can gt tripped up - if you are a first time home buyer, then I would more strongly recommend finding an agent to help you as that person will be able to reduce the liklihood of stepping on a mine as you navigate through the minefield. Best of luck with your search.
Web Reference:  http://www.JimsRealty.com
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Wed Feb 13, 2008
If your looking for a condo in Aurora, you have a lot of choices ( over 800 for 2+bed 2+Bath). I also agree that the most important step is to look into the financing options available to you. The financial markets have seen a lot of changes in the recent past and continue to evolve on a daily basis. A good buyers agent can advise you on financing options,lenders, and First Time Homebuyers Programs. Also finding an agent the specializes in the area which you are looking can greatly reduce the search time. One issue i would like to emphasize is that the Listing/Sellers Agent job is to repesent the seller.
Web Reference:  http://WWW.HUS-PRO.COM
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Jason Burch, , Boulder, CO
Wed Feb 13, 2008
I think the best way to start the process is to get out there and look at some properties. Then begin doing your homework once you have questions. If you know which area you want to be in that can help narrow it down quite a bit. Also having some ideas as to how much you want to spend on the property and HOA fees will help too. As for the HOA, it is good to find out how the money is being spent, whether there are any special assesments coming up and how the HOA stands financially. A lender can let you know how that fee will impact your montly payments. I am a licensed real estate agent in Colorado and would be happy to answer any questions you have or show you any properties you would like to see. Feel free to contact me at 720-352-9038 or jasonb@boulderhomestead.com
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