U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > Colorado > Colorado Springs
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Reply Start New Thread
 
Old 08-18-2012, 01:13 AM
 
Location: East Colorado Springs
57 posts, read 107,703 times
Reputation: 21

Advertisements

My wife and I have been in the Springs a little over two years now and want to buy a house/put down some roots. We are both from Michigan, but absolutely love it here and want to stop throwing our money away through rent each month!

Ideally we want to move to the Old Colorado City area but aren't sure where to start. We have looked on realtor.com quite a bit but are hoping to find a realtor that focuses on the west side of town to help us out. If anyone has worked with a realtor that knows that area I would really appreciate it!

Thanks!
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 08-18-2012, 08:29 AM
 
Location: Falcon, Colorado, USA
43 posts, read 78,413 times
Reputation: 76
My suggestion would be to start at the Bank. Go in and get pre-qualified for a dollar amount, then do a budget and figure out what you can afford.
Remember that your rent covers the cost of the place you reside and if something breaks or goes out the actual owner is paying for the repair/replacement. There are many expenses when owning a home that folks tend to forget about when they are renting.

Things you may or may not be paying for now as a renter

Water (watering the lawn can use quite a bit of water)
Trash
TAXES
Home owners insurance
HOA or CC&R fees
Landscaping (you might need to buy a lawnmower and trimmer)
minor repairs around the home
replacing major appliances when they break
pest control

These things can add up if you are not paying them now so take them in consideration when you plan your budget.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-18-2012, 09:12 AM
 
Location: East Colorado Springs
57 posts, read 107,703 times
Reputation: 21
Otowi, thanks for the recommendation, I really appreciate it!

Jaylind, thank you for the advice. We are in the process of figuring out our budget and what we will be able to afford. We won't have a huge down payment for the house, so we will probably have to ad PMI insurance to that list of expenses as well. My folks weren't very good at budgetting their money or saving, so living paycheck to paycheck was normal to me growing up. Now that I am married and wanting to settle down I am realizing just how important being in good control of your finances really is. Wish I would have come to that realization about a decade ago!

I understand what a HOA is, but what is CC&R?

Sometimes I take for granted how great it is to have such a wonderful resource like this forum. We have a really great online community and I truly appreciate the help I get from everyone on here!
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-18-2012, 03:26 PM
 
Location: Falcon, Colorado, USA
43 posts, read 78,413 times
Reputation: 76
CC&R is almost the same as an HOA. CC&R stands for Covenants, conditions and restrictions and our is run by a property manager.

About the PMI new laws this past June allow for less PMI, and something I didn't know about, if you pay down the balance of the loan to around 80% you can request to cancel the PMI.

Look into HUD homes they are not all run down and in bad neighborhoods. They usually will cover a good deal of closing costs as well as Realtor fees. Hud homes in El Paso county
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-18-2012, 10:30 PM
 
Location: East Colorado Springs
57 posts, read 107,703 times
Reputation: 21
I should look into HUD homes, I really don't know much about them but I just picture super run down places in awful neighborhoods. The houses I saw from the link you posted seem really nice though! It definitely is making me think twice about HUD!
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-18-2012, 11:33 PM
 
727 posts, read 1,135,208 times
Reputation: 766
A couple of more tips. When you go to the bank, pre-qualification is fine, but when you're actually ready to buy, you need to have pre-approval in your hand when you make an offer. It puts you in a much better bargaining position and a seller is going to be much more amenable to accepting your offer if they know you're already approved for a loan (I believe pre-approval lasts for about a 45 day period, so get the approval when you're seriously ready to buy).

Second, some of what you're saying raises some red flags. Part of what caused the housing bubble to burst was people getting in over their heads without anticipating the unexpected. If you're living paycheck to paycheck now and have very little saved to put down (holding back a fair amount for the inevitable unexpected or unplanned for expenses associated with buying), you're placing yourself at great risk of defaulting down the road. What happens if you're laid off? Do you have sufficient savings or a second income sufficient to make the payments for a period of time until you're reemployed? Do you have an extra $2000 to take care of the new furnace you may need that, surprise, gives out after the first frost? Do you see promotion opportunities or pay raises in the near future in your job sufficient to take a risk now with the prospect of things getting easier financially down the road? If your community has CC&Rs, does that mean an additional fee each month to take care of common areas; those fees can be expensive on top of your PITI (principal, interest, taxes and insurance). Are children in your future? If so there might be "slight" increase in your expenses for the next 20 plus years!

My suggestion is that the budget you're setting up include a significant amount of savings, so that you have enough for a decent down payment (get some skin in the game) and have some left over for the inevitable additional expenses you'll encounter. Doing that will force you to get out of the paycheck to paycheck merry go round that got so many folks in trouble over the few years. Until you're able to do that, I'd recommend you keep on renting.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-19-2012, 12:14 AM
 
Location: East Colorado Springs
57 posts, read 107,703 times
Reputation: 21
Carrera32, When I say I am getting serious about buying a house I probably should have been a little more specific about my timeframe. We are not looking to buy something next week without any savings built up. Most likely we would be purchasing in one to two years at the absolute soonest. By scrutinizing our spending habits we have learned that if we are a little more conscious of how we are spending/saving our money we won't have to live paycheck to paycheck anymore. I just wanted to start getting educated about the process and start figuring out what I need to do in order to make a smart decision for my family.

I have set up two savings, one for the down payment and another for hidden expenses we run into along the way. My job is very secure and does have a lot of potential for growth, and my wife is pretty secure in her job as well. We definitely have a long way to go before we are ready to buy, but are committed to doing things the right way so that we don't end up defaulting when things get rough.

In the short term we do plan on staying with our current apt while we get our ducks in a row.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-19-2012, 01:17 PM
 
727 posts, read 1,135,208 times
Reputation: 766
mrbrpaul: Sounds like good plan. Best of luck to you.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-20-2012, 12:44 PM
 
808 posts, read 1,175,939 times
Reputation: 2074
Quote:
Originally Posted by mrbrpaul View Post
Ideally we want to move to the Old Colorado City area but aren't sure where to start. We have looked on realtor.com quite a bit but are hoping to find a realtor that focuses on the west side of town to help us out.
You'll have a bigger challenge finding a house in OCC without dreaded foundation-shifting issues than you will finding a realtor. Those older houses are either rock-solid or a foundation nightmare waiting to happen, so be very, very careful/thorough. You might be better served paying closer attention to which home inspector you hire than which realtor you hire. Keep in mind the two (inspector v. realtor) have very different financial incentives and you probably want an inspector who is not effectively "hired" by your realtor. I cheer you on - home ownership done well can be a very good thing, but as you know it is a big financial commitment.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-20-2012, 06:39 PM
 
Location: East Colorado Springs
57 posts, read 107,703 times
Reputation: 21
I thought the inspector was impartial since they get paid whether or not the house sells. Why would it matter if the realtor finds them?
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:


Options
X
Data:
Loading data...
Based on 2000-2016 data
Loading data...

123
Hide US histogram

Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > Colorado > Colorado Springs
Similar Threads
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

2005-2018, Advameg, Inc.

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top