Posted by Steven Sawyer on 2/16/2020

Image by Lisa Johnson from Pixabay

So you've always wanted your own ranch land out west. Is now the time to buy? According to the Wall Street Journal, it could be -- but only if you feel confident. There are plenty of luxury, sprawling ranches to be had at rock-bottom prices, but the upkeep and ownership of a mega-ranch in Colorado can stretch upwards into the millions each year, say the pros. And not many average American home buyers are truly prepared for the financial hardships that await them west of the prairie. 

The Trend Toward Recreational Ranching

While many home buyers dream of owning massive acreage out west, only a very few ever achieve that dream, says Mansion Global. Mostly, it's the uber-wealthy who buy up those multi-million-dollar ranches that the baby boomers are leaving behind to children who have no desire or means to maintain them. These are the recreational ranchers -- businessmen and women who vacation or retire out west when they can and who typically pay between $10 and $30 million for the privilege. 

What's the draw? Mostly it's the pristine views, the fly-fishing and the feeling of being among the chosen few to live like royalty with only the natural flora and fauna of the Rocky Mountains to bow down to. 

Recreational Ranching & the Foreign Market

But while owning and operating a working ranch out west is a dream for many Americans, for international buyers, it's mostly a no-go. Ranching, it seems, is strictly a U.S. thing, and donning a cowboy hat and chaps holds little appeal to foreign investors who didn't grow up with a yearning for farming and running cattle. 

What does this mean for those who ARE in the market for a big slice of American pie? It means lots of land from which to choose, selling for less-than-premium prices. And if you have the wealth and the means, 2020 could very well be the year you pick up your dream ranch out west for a song. 

Features of the Recreational Ranch

The ranches that are most in demand are those that feature sweeping, breathtaking vistas, yet are in close proximity to skiing, fishing and other popular amenities. Ranches that nestle up against national parks or forest land, but that are still close enough to civilization to be considered convenient living, top the list. 

If you're in the mood and the market for recreational ranch living, you can pick one up for a song right now, so long as you have a spare million or two lying about. But for average home buyers, the act of picking up stakes and taking on a sweeping expanse of ranch land in Colorado this year is probably ill-advised.  





Posted by Steven Sawyer on 2/9/2020

A home inspection is a crucial part of the homebuying process. At this point, a home inspector will walk through a house with you and examine the property inside and out. If a home inspector identifies underlying problems with a residence, these issues could put your purchase in jeopardy. On the other hand, if a home inspection reveals that there are no major problems with a residence, you may feel comfortable proceeding with a purchase.

Ultimately, how a homebuyer approaches a property inspection can have far-flung effects. For those who want to achieve the best-possible home inspection results, we're here to help you get ready for a house inspection.

Let's take a look at three tips to ensure you know exactly how to approach a house inspection.

1. Prepare for the Best- and Worst-Case Scenarios

Regardless of how a home inspection turns out, you need to be ready. That way, you'll have a plan in place to act quickly, even in the worst-case scenario.

In the best-case scenario after a house inspection, you likely will take a step forward in your quest to complete a home purchase. Conversely, in the worst-case scenario following a home inspection, you may rescind your offer to purchase a house and reenter the real estate market.

It also is important to remember that you can always walk away from a house sale if an inspection reveals there are significant problems with a residence. For a homebuyer, it is paramount to feel comfortable with a house after an inspection. If a home raises lots of red flags during an inspection, a buyer should have no trouble removing his or her offer to purchase a house.

2. Ask Plenty of Questions

A home inspector is a property expert who can provide insights into the condition of a residence. Thus, you should rely on this property expert as much as possible.

Don't hesitate to discuss a home with an inspector. Because if you ask lots of questions during a home inspection, you may be able to receive comprehensive property insights that you may struggle to obtain elsewhere.

3. Analyze the Inspection Results Closely

Following a home inspection, you'll receive a report that details a property inspector's findings. Review this report closely, and if you have follow-up questions about it, reach out to the inspector that provided the report.

Lastly, as you look for ways to streamline the homebuying journey, you should work with a knowledgeable real estate agent. This housing market professional can put you in touch with the top home inspectors in your city or town. Plus, if you want to request home repairs or a reduced price on a house after an inspection, a real estate agent will negotiate with a seller's agent on your behalf.

Let's not forget about the support that a real estate agent provides at other points in the homebuying journey, either. If you ever have concerns or questions during the homebuying journey, a real estate agent will respond to them at your convenience.

Prepare for a home inspection, and you can use this evaluation to gain the insights you need to make an informed homebuying decision.





Posted by Steven Sawyer on 2/2/2020

Family members and friends are loved ones who play important roles in your life. However, when it comes to sharing the news that you've decided to sell your home, it sometimes can be difficult to prevent these loved from sabotaging your home sale.

Lucky for you, there are many simple ways to reduce the risk that loved ones can hinder your ability to sell your residence.

Now, let's take a look at three tips to keep family members and friends involved in the home selling process.

1. Meet with Family Members and Friends

Don't wait to inform family members and friends about your decision to sell your house. Instead, meet with loved ones so you can discuss your home selling plans with them.

Face-to-face meetings with family members and friends are ideal. These meetings will allow you to explain why you decided to sell your home, where you plan to move and much more.

In addition, meeting with family members and friends shows loved ones that you care about their thoughts and feelings. It also sets the stage to involve your loved ones in the home selling process – something that may help you get the best results possible.

2. Respond to Loved Ones' Home Selling Questions

In all likelihood, family members and friends will have lots of questions about your decision to sell your home. If you plan ahead for potential questions, you should have no trouble responding to loved ones' queries accordingly.

It may be tough to move further away from loved ones. But if you prepare before you meet with family members and friends, you can improve your chances of remaining calm, cool and collected as you share your home selling news.

Furthermore, it is important to remember that loved ones might not always agree with your home selling decision.

On the other hand, family members and friends should be ready to stick with you and support your decision, regardless of whether they agree with it. By doing so, your loved ones can provide you with the assistance you need to streamline the home selling process.

3. Discuss Your Options with a Real Estate Agent

For those who want to get their loved ones involved the home selling cycle, meeting with a real estate agent may prove to be a great first step.

A real estate agent can provide recommendations and suggestions about how to share your home selling news with family members and friends. Plus, this housing market professional can respond to your home selling concerns and queries at any time.

Perhaps best of all, a real estate agent will serve as a great guide throughout the home selling process. He or she will help you add your residence to the real estate market, promote your house to potential property buyers and negotiate with homebuyers on your behalf.

Don't worry about telling family members and friends about your decision to sell your house. Conversely, use these tips, and you can prevent your loved ones from sabotaging your home sale.





Posted by Steven Sawyer on 1/26/2020

Applying for a mortgage may seem like a long, stressful process at first. Fortunately, we're here to help you take the guesswork out of submitting a mortgage application.

Now, let's take a look at three tips to help you streamline the mortgage application process.

1. Ask Questions

A bank or credit union likely will ask you to provide a wide range of information as part of the mortgage application cycle. And as you complete a mortgage application, you may have questions along the way too.

Remember, a lender is happy to help you in any way possible. If you ever have concerns or questions as you complete a mortgage application, you should reach out to a lender for expert support. That way, you can reduce the risk of potential problems down the line that otherwise could slow down the mortgage application process.

Even a single mistake on a mortgage application may prevent you from getting a mortgage. Perhaps even worse, a delayed mortgage application may force you to miss out on an opportunity to acquire your dream house. But if you reach out to a lender as you complete your mortgage application, you can gain the insights you need to quickly and effortlessly finalize the necessary documentation to obtain a mortgage.

2. Be Thorough

A mortgage application may require you to look back at your financial and employment histories and provide information that a lender will use to determine whether to approve or deny your submission. Meanwhile, you should be ready to provide a lender with any requested information to ensure a seamless application process.

As a homebuyer, it is your responsibility to include accurate information on your mortgage application. In fact, failure to do so may cause a lender to reject your mortgage application. If you allocate the necessary time and resources to dot every I and cross every T on your mortgage application, you can boost the likelihood of a fast approval.

3. Shop Around

For homebuyers, it is crucial to check out all of the mortgage options that are available. If you meet with a variety of banks and credit unions, you can review myriad mortgage options and select a mortgage that complements your finances.

Banks and credit unions generally provide a broad array of fixed- and adjustable-rate mortgages. If you learn about all of the mortgage options at your disposal, you can find one that enables you to purchase your dream house without breaking your budget.

Of course, once you are approved for a mortgage and are ready to launch your house search, you may want to hire a real estate agent as well. A real estate agent will offer plenty of guidance at each stage of the homebuying journey. In addition, a real estate agent can make it easy for you to find a top-notch residence at a budget-friendly price in any housing market, at any time.

Start the mortgage application process today, and you can move one step closer to acquiring your dream residence.




Tags: Buying a home   Mortgage  
Categories: Buying a Home   Mortgage  


Posted by Steven Sawyer on 1/19/2020

House hunting can be time-consuming. With so many houses currently on the market and so little time to spend visiting homes, it’s important to narrow down your search as much as possible before attending a showing.

Fortunately, in today’s digital world, it’s possible to learn a great deal of important information right from your phone or computer.

In today’s post, I’m going to give you some advice on researching the homes you’re thinking about making an offer on. We’ll talk about researching the neighborhood, and--of course--the house itself.

Putting together all the stats on the home

Let’s start with, arguably, the most important thing to research: the house itself. When you want to learn about a home, the best place to look is usually the real estate listing. Since most of us discover homes through listings, odds are you’re already on this page. However, there’s a lot of information in a listing, so take the time to go through it and gleam whatever you can from the home’s description.

Next, Google the house address and click on listings from other real estate sites. Oftentimes, a house that has been sold before will have multiple listings across the internet with different data.

Once you’ve scoured the listings, head over to the county assessor’s website to look at records of the home’s ownership. This will tell you who bought and sold the home and when. There’s much you can learn from this data, especially if a home is being sold frequently. You can also use this information to contact previous owners to ask them questions about the home that the current owner might not know the answer to.

Snooping around the neighborhood

If the house is nearby, simply driving through the neighborhood can tell you a lot. You can visit the neighborhood during rush hour to see what the traffic is like, for example.

However, it isn’t always practical to take the time to visit a house that you aren’t sure you’re interested in. So, what’s the next best thing? Google Maps.

Visit the neighborhood on Google Maps to see what’s in the area. Are there a lot of closed businesses? That could be a sign of a neighborhood in decline. Check for nearby things like parks, grocery stores, and other amenities that could influence your buying decision.

Next, use Google’s “street view” feature and explore the neighborhood. You can see what kind of shape the other homes are in, and find out the condition of infrastructure like roads and sidewalks.

Note addresses of comparable homes in the neighborhood and look up their purchase prices. This will give you an idea of whether the home is being priced appropriately.

If you’re having trouble finding information on a home, such as sale records, try contacting the local assessor. They should be able to point you to a database that will help you in your search.







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