Have you been toying with the idea of buying property in Summit County, CO?
Whether you’re new to the community or a longtime local who is ready to take the real estate plunge, there is one very important first step you need to take, talk to a local lender and get pre-approved.
Yes, a LOCAL lender, not the telemarketer who called to give you the latest mortgage rates or the internet marketer who overloaded your email with promises of low interest rates and a deal you can’t pass up. A local lender is extremely important for several reasons:
- A local lender knows Summit County. As a resort community, we have unique situations. You may be purchasing a condo in a complex with timeshare opportunities, vacation rentals and a high percentage of non-owner occupied units, some lenders have an issue with this and your loan could be derailed mid-way because of it. By using a local lender you avoid these pitfalls, it’s their job to know you and the property you’re purchasing.
- A local lender can’t disappear on you the way someone online can. RE/MAX agent Cari McGee in Kennewick, WA posted a wonderful illustration of how her buyers were delayed repeatedly by their online lender and ended up closing eight days after their original date with all kinds of headaches. You can check out her blog here: In the Name of All That is Good and Holy, Use a Local Lender
- Your realtor has a relationship with local lenders, so if things start to go south, we can work towards the best solution together.
So, first find a local lender. Here is a list to get you started:
The next thing is to get pre-approved NOT pre-qualified. The difference between pre-approved and pre-qualified is HUGE. According to Brian O’Connell at Investopedia, most people are under the misconception that getting pre-qualified and pre-approved are the same. Basically, a pre-qualification is just the beginning. It means that based on the financial picture you give the lender, you can get a loan. Pre-approval means you actually apply for the mortgage. It’s an involved process. However at the end of it, they tell you how much money they will give you. Now you’re ready to go looking at property.
Are you thinking, But I’m just considering shopping for property, not buying it, why do I need to go through all this? Here’s why. Real estate inventory in Summit County is at an all time low. That means, when you’re out “browsing” or “kicking tires” and you stumble across the perfect property, you need to be ready to act FAST and there will likely be several other competing offers. How do you get the competitive edge? Pre-approval with a local lender. If you have it, you just gave that seller a solid offer, backed up with a solid financial picture. You’re offer is on top. Now aren’t you happy you took the time to get pre-approved?