From the inbox: is the VA loan debt payoff a good idea?

This is a GREAT question. If you don’t know, the VA loan allows for up to 4% debt payoff, as part of the mortgage balance. What does this mean?

Let’s take a hypothetical $250,000 dollar home. This means you can roll as much as $10K in debt payoff into a home purchase (credit card, car payoff, etc.). This has a couple of caveats, including home appraisal price — the home must still appraise for the contracted sales price or higher.

That’s great, right?! It can be. Who wouldn’t want to trade 10-15-19% credit card debt for 4-5% on a mortgage? It all depends on price point and long term goals. If you’re considering holding the home for a short time, this may not be the best use of the money.

Email me or call at 719-440-6626 and let’s talk options.

This is not legal or financial advice; always consult a qualified professional in their field of expertise.

From the inbox: what’s a buyer’s agent?

Good question! Short answer: YOUR advocate in the purchase of a home.

Longer answer: in Colorado, there are four types of working relationships — seller’s agent, buyer’s agent, transaction broker and customer. A seller’s agent represents the seller and “works solely on behalf of the seller to promote the interests of the seller with the utmost good faith, loyalty and fidelity. The agent negotiates on behalf of and acts as an advocate for the seller.”

A buyer’s agent “works solely on behalf of the buyer to promote the interests of the buyer with the utmost good faith, loyalty and fidelity. The agent negotiates on behalf of and acts as an advocate for the buyer.”

A transaction broker “assists the buyer or seller or both throughout a real estate transaction by performing terms of any written or oral agreement, fully informing the parties, presenting all offers and assisting the parties with any contracts, including the closing of the transaction without being an agent or advocate for any of the parties.”

Finally, in the customer relationship, the agent “has no brokerage relationship because such party has not engaged or employed the broker, either as the
party’s agent or as the party’s transaction-broker.”

(From the Colorado Definitions of Working Relationships Disclosure)

Looking to buy a home? I’d be honored to earn your business

From the inbox: what is an appraisal?

Good question! The short answer: an appraisal is an independent assessment of a home’s value. This differs from a home inspection, whose primary purpose is to assess the condition – not value – of a home.

The longer answer…Before You Buy: 4 Questions About Home Appraisals

Looking to buy or sell a home in Colorado Springs? Call Rob at 719-440-6626!

Are rising rents forcing millennials to buy homes?

Here in Colorado Springs, this seems to be the trend. Especially around the $200K price point…we’re seeing lots of activity. Looking for a home? Questions about the process, I’ a home! Call Rob at 719-440-6626!me! Call Rob at 719-440-6626!

RealtyTime: Why Rates Remain Deliciously Low

From the article: “The benchmark 30-year fixed-rate mortgage (FRM) averaged 3.80 percent with an average 0.6 point for the week. Compare that to a year ago when the average 30-year fixed rate mortgage was 4.37 percent.” 

That’s close to what my mortgage rate was 3.5 years ago! 

From Bankrate.com, check out this chart that plots the last 3 years of fixed rate mortgages.  


From the inbox: What’s up with the rental market here? And what’s the MLS?

Good question!  The first answer is that we have an intense rental market here with an app. 96% occupancy rate.  That’s been sustained, too, for a couple of years.  If anything, it’s getting harder to find affordable housing in the rental market in Colorado Springs.  I am tracking around 220 requests for single family housing in the sub $1100 price range.  There are 28 homes at the time of this writing in the Multiple Listing System(MLS), not filtered for bedrooms or pets or available date. The “why” of this has to do with supply, demand and the local economy.  

Second, the MLS is the local database of agent and property manager listed homes.  It is not the sole source of rental properties in town but is the best product we as Realtors have.  Daily via Facebook in Colorado Springs Rentals, I provide a list of the most commonly requested configuration of homes. 

If you’re looking for housing in Colorado Springs, we’d be honored to earn your business.  Call Rob or Drew at 719-440-6626 or email robthompsonrealtor@gmail.com!  

HouseLogic: Protecting a home against extreme weather

I’m not sure snow qualifies (the cold does!) but here are some tips from HouseLogic to prepare against extreme weather.

If you’re looking to buy or sell in Colorado, we’d be honored to earn your business!

Colorado Springs Realtor