Xcel Energy

So we have all had an experience with Xcel Energy, most people have had positive and negative things to say and all I have to say today is GREAT JOB!!! Last night one of my Short Sale sellers called me to let me know that Xcel energy called them because they noted that they had turned off the Gas for non payment. However because of the cold weather they were contacting all of the users who would otherwise freeze and turning the heat on for them. Kudos to Xcel, what a great thing to do for people. company’s like Xcel energy often get a bad rap for the sheer volume of things they deal with and this was an amazing way to give back to the community that supports them.

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Down Payment Assistance

Down Payment Assistance is a option that is available for lots of home buyers and can greatly help with the home buying process. DPA, as it is refered to for short, can be found from many different agency’s in each state but here in Colorado we have some very popular options. There is a “Fear” that people have with Down Payment assistance because it operates much like a second mortgage. The term Second mortgage is often placed in the Blame for our current market as people in the past used inflated appraisals to get second mortgage’s on their homes which were not worth what they were financing. Lucky for us we have lots of very very strict regulation on this process now and it is very hard to end up in a terrible situation using DPA. ALL of the DPA programs our buyers have been using in Colorado require the buyers to take a class on home ownership. This does lots for the knowledge needed to own a home without becoming upside down. The appraisal process that is used with all of the DPA programs is also very strict and will not allow for the property to be over financed. This means that if someone is looking at using DPA and they find a over priced listing they will likely not be able to purchase that house. It works in the opposite direction as well. If a home is in need of to much work the appraiser will make note of the repairs needed and if the sellers are not willing to put the house into an acceptable condition the buyers can not purchase the home.

When buying a home there are a lot of things people are going to want to spend some extra money on and that could be Paint, Carpet, Appliances, repairs the list is never ending. If you look at it from a logical standpoint and you put down money on the house but have no money to make the needed changes VS financing the entire house and having the money to do the things needed to live in the home. Which scenario is a buyer going to be more likely to walk away from? The house that they have a tiny bit of Equity in that needs repairs or the perfect home? The payment difference between the 2 options is usually under $50 per month (under $200,000 where most DPA people are looking) range. If the market were to take another loss after the purchase in our current scenario that should be of little concern for our DPA buyers. The Focus of DPA lending is to get people into homes for long term and the ever changing market of Real Estate should not bother someone who has no intention of selling their home. If you are looking to live in the house for 2-3 years then DPA would likely not be the best option. The reason I say this is because of the ability to sell the home for a profit in that short amount of time as the first few years of home ownership dont typically pay down enough of the principal on the loan balance to afford paying the fee’s involved with selling a home in Colorado.

All of the DPA programs require a certain amount of $ to be paid for by the Buyer. Usually $1,000, this means the buyer would be putting up the $1,000 as Earnest money in most cases and applying it to the transaction at closing. The other fee’s that the buyers should be considering would be the Appraisal fee (normally $400) and the fee for the Buyers Inspection (normally around $300) This makes the total out of pocket expense for a lot of buyers only $1700 and that gets them into a home. There are other ways to structure this where you could only put up $500 Earnest money and show your payments of the inspection and appraisal to be enough for the requirements for most of the DPA programs. This would bring the out of pocket expense down to $1,200! Ish.

Below are some links to some of the different DPA programs available in CO.

http://www.chfainfo.com/

http://www.coloradohousingassistance.org/

https://www.auroragov.org/AuroraGov/Departments/Neighborhood_Services/Community_Development/021459?ssSourceNodeId=967&ssSourceSiteId=621

http://www.crhdc.org/

There are others as well and each city government should have information on programs in the areas you are looking for. You will need to make sure the lender you are working with is able to work with the different programs, if they don’t know what you are talking about then you should find someone who does understand the programs as well as the Lenders I have listed below!

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Virtual Realtor?

With technology ever-changing the way we live and work it does make lots of sense that using the tools we have is the way our Real Estate market is heading.

Lets pretend you are relocating to a new city and you have no idea where to buy your new home. Most relocation departments for corporations have assistance for finding a Realtor. Do you know who or where they get these people? Usually not, you are just told that they are going to be the person who is assisting your move and you go with it. Most company’s will fly you out to your new location for a home finding trip! Because we all know how likely it will be that you have less than a week to find and purchase your new house and you make it happen! LOL Lets think about the age we live in, we are all using computers and technology to help us find the areas and homes we want to live in but being in a different state, time zone or even country can make this process complicated at best. As a service to our clients we offer Virtual showing’s. We can narrow down your home search fairly quickly and you never have to leave your couch. schedule showings that work for your time frames and we can do a live tour via Skype or similar programs so you can actually see the homes LIVE via internet and ask questions just like you would in person. Now when you fly out for your short time frame to see the homes in person you will have wasted little time and only see the homes you really want! Coldwell Banker is on the leading edge with Real Estate and as our company is one of the largest in the country we can are likely available to work with your company’s Relocation Dept, just ask and we can look into it for you. Happy House Hunting,

http://www.skype.com/intl/en-us/home

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The most wonderful time of the year!

Tis the season for Holiday Cheer right? Well for Real Estate it is a interesting time of season. Most people are not in Real Estate Mode during the Holiday Season and this is the best time of year to be ready for a deal. Just because of the Major Holidays things do not stop happening. Lenders are still putting homes on the market and an inside source tells me that HUD is still putting homes on the market through the holidays. This is perfect for serious buyers as they have lots of inventory to choose from while people are distracted with figgy pudding and sugar plums they can sneak in like the infamous Grinch and snatch the equity out from under the tree.

This is also very important for Sellers. We usually have a decent rush of Buyers come through after the first of the year everyone decides to move forward with plans for 2011. Sellers will often wait until after the first to list. So it is my opinion that it is much better to be prepared and get the home ready to sell prior to the first so as not to miss the rush.

So keep in mind this season while watching football and drinking Egg Nog that the market keeps moving regardless of the time of year. Have a Happy Holiday Season,

The Kinslow Team

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Vista Peak P-20 Campus

The new Vista Peak P-20 Campus in Aurora Colorado is here! This State of the Art Campus allows students to start the training for the work force as early as pre school. Students who attend this school will have a range of course options to tutor them into a career field from the beginning. Students will also be able to graduate from this public school with as much as a 2 year Degree! Not just a High School Diploma.

http://vistapeak.aurorak12.org/

The Vista Peak Campus is located in Aurora CO 80018 in the Cross Creek, Traditions, Adonea Community. There is quick and Easy access to E 470 and I 70. Just a 15 Minute drive from Down Town Denver and 45 mins to the mountains this community has all of the things needed for todays working family. Southlands Mall is just minutes away and the new Horizon Uptown shopping center is being built just across the road.

Other great features for the Vista Peak Campus is the price range of the housing for Parents who want to utilize the school. Condos in Cross Creek start out around $100,000 and single family homes start at just $175,000! That does not mean that there is no where for folks who want the higher end housing which can also be found here as well as the Acre homes sites at Thunderbird Estates just South of Cross Creek.

http://www.horizonuptown.com/

http://www.lennar.com/New-Homes/Colorado/Denver/Aurora/Adonea

http://www.standardpacifichomes.com/new-homes/aurora-denver-cross-creek.html

http://www.auroracrosscreek.org/

http://www.lennar.com/New-Homes/Colorado/Denver/Aurora/Cross-Creek

http://www.drhorton.com/Where-We-Build/Colorado/Denver/Division/Traditions.aspx

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More Good News for Colorado!

This was in today Business Journal!

http://www.bizjournals.com/denver/news/2010/12/01/feds-beige-book-sees-strengthened.html?surround=etf&ana=e_article

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Interest Rates

There is a lot of news around Interest Rates and Real Estate right now. Why is this important to follow? If you are a Home Buyer or considering a purchase in the next few years it is very important to watch the Rates being offered from Lenders. We have never seen rates as low as they are currently but we are also watching them climb back up as quick as they fell. On average a Buyer who is looking to purchase a $200,000 home can expect to pay around $2,000 per year per 1% interest. So if the Interest rate goes up by 1% that buyer is simply putting around 1% more per year in the Banks pocket instead of their own. The other problem with this is that Buyers who can only afford to spend $200,000 on a home can expect that they can only afford $180,000 if the rate goes up 1% before they “Lock” the interest rate they need. That means that the payment on $180,000 is now the same as the payment on $200,000 when the rate was 1% lower. Now I am NOT a lender and these numbers are just examples and should not be held as Fact but they are far from Fiction and they are pretty darn close. The differences could be anything from Tax’s and Insurance, HOA fees The term of the loan ect. So please make sure and get the exact breakdown from your lender. But dont think that 1% is a small number.

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