We are homeowners! Even as I type that, it feels so weird to say.
If you’ve been following along on Instagram then you know that Corey and I have been moving into our new house for the past few weeks. Yes, weeks! Only two more to go until we are officially moved into our new home – and actually living in it. We have been so busy packing, painting, building, and soaking in all the joys of homeownership. I can’t tell you how many trips we’ve taken to Home Depot, Target, and Sherwin Williams. Slowly, but surely we are starting to make this place feel like ours and I am loving it! Since I haven’t been able to post on the blog lately, I wanted to share a little photo shoot to celebrate homeownership!
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To give you a little insight into our journey, I thought I would share a few things we learned about buying our first home! The Denver real estate market can be a tricky one to navigate since the city seems to be booming lately. Here’s what we wish we knew before we bought our first home and few tips on what to expect!
Find a great realtor.
We met our realtor more than two years ago at an open house that she and her husband were hosting. They were so sweet and patient with us throughout the whole process. We changed our minds about exactly what we wanted and where we’d like to be about a million times and she always delivered. Highly recommend Nicole if you are in the Denver area!
Explore the area.
Corey and I drove around so many neighborhoods, Google Mapped nearby restaurants and parks, and asked our friends about each area we loved. Aside from the crime rates, schools and taxes, this part was crucial when it came to officially deciding on where we wanted to buy. We even rode our bikes around the neighborhoods and talked to people who were walking around to get a taste of the community.
Be prepared to get turned down… a lot.
It is a bidding war with almost every home on the market here in Denver. We put an offer on at least six different houses before we finally went under contract. Many of the homes we placed offers on went well above asking price (we’re talking $20k+ over) and we just couldn’t fork over that much. We actually offered under asking price for our new house and they accepted our offer because we were flexible on move out dates.
Write a letter to the seller.
Believe it or not, this can actually help you out! Since the real estate market is so hot right now in Denver, many offers on the table are actually from people who want to flip the house then sell it for more later. Some sellers are really turned off by this. They want their home to go to a family who will make memories and cherish the house just like they did. Our letter gave the seller a little insight into who we were and what we loved most about their house. They later said it was one of the reasons why they chose us!
Getting a loan is EXTREMELY invasive.
Once you go under contract, you immediately have a million papers to sign. They need to know about EVERY credit card you own and ask for bank statements to go along with every single one. Most of the time just one credit check is needed, but after 120 days they have to run it again. Well, they just so happened to run our credit check again after the N Sale, and let’s just say hubby wasn’t too happy about our new rate because of it (oops!). I was able to get our credit back down to what we needed to get our loan, but man it was stressful dealing with all of that. Sidenote, make sure you don’t open up any new credit cards after you go under contract.
After all of this, I will say that buying a house can be extremely stressful. But it’s all worth it in the end. I can’t wait to be all moved in and make this house a home!