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Condo Financing Rules- help!

by Allison Simson

If you own a condo, or would like to own a condo in Summit County, CO, you might find the following interesting!  

Condo Financing Issue Finally Making Waves In Washington
For years, the Colorado resort areas have clambered to the National Association of Realtors (NAR) that condo financing rules were killing the local markets, and that the FHA, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac rules needed to be addressed. It was clear for the first time this year in Washington recently that the condo financing issue is beginning to stick.  Congressman Polis talked about his bill to address workforce housing condo rules, NAR had talking points on FHA condo rules that need to be addressed from a regulatory perspective and there is a letter being circulated by Members of Congress telling the FHA to take action. As of this morning, NAR reached out to the resort areas and offered to request a waiver or exemption for resort areas.  The Glenwood, Steamboat, Summit and Vail Boards will be working with NAR to draft and request the waiver for resort areas.   Due to the Washington political climate, it is possible that no changes will be made this year, but it is inevitable that the issue will be addressed in GSE and housing reform next year.

Let's hope that the Washington politicians can see that the fact that many lenders right now can not lend on condos with any short term rentals in them (which is just about EVERY complex in Summit County!) is really hurting our local market!


3 common home purchase roadblocks

by Allison Simson

3 common home purchase roadblocks

Do you know your sellers' true motivation?

Question:  Allison, we have been looking for a place in Summit County for over a year now.  We’ve seen several that we like, but just can’t seem to “pull the trigger”….any suggestions on how we’ll know when we’ve found the perfect place?

Answer:  You are not alone!  Buyers who find a home they'd like to buy soon after they start their home search often pass on it because they feel they haven't seen enough listings. Months later, when they haven't found anything to compare to the first home they really liked, they can regret that they didn't seize a great opportunity when they had a chance.

It takes a leap of faith and complete trust in your real estate agent to make a quick move in a market that's new to you. You'll feel more confident when you've done your homework and know the reasons why some listings sell for more than others. This is a process that takes time and is time well spent.

A characteristic of the current home-sale market, particularly in or near areas where job growth has improved significantly, is that there are not a lot of good homes for sale. In these niche markets, there tend to be more buyers looking than there are homes to satisfy the demand.

The housing market is bifurcated. Unlike the high-demand enclaves inspired by a pickup in employment, there are many more areas where there are far too many unsold homes and with too few buyers. This tends to have a dampening effect on home prices.

How long it takes you to find a home will depend in part on whether what you're looking for is readily available. It will also depend on how many buyers are looking for the same kind of home you'd like to buy. If there's competition for a scarce commodity, you might make offers on several homes before you are able to convince a seller to accept your offer.

HOUSE HUNTING TIP: Investors snap up foreclosure listings quickly, but they aren't going to call these places home. It's rare for buyers to find a home they want to occupy as their primary residence quickly, either due to specialized housing needs or lack of inventory. Put the time you spend waiting to good use by learning more about the community in which you want to live. Patience should be your motto.

Patience is also needed to carry you through the contract negotiation and closing. Although each home-sale transaction is unique, it's not uncommon for a glitch to come up at some point. Some homes don't appraise for the price you've agreed to pay. If you don't have any additional cash to add to the deal, and the seller won't renegotiate the price, you'll be back at square one, looking for a home to buy.

The glitch could occur before your offer is accepted if the sellers are stubbornly unrealistic about the price they're asking. Recently, buyers were encouraged to make an offer on an overpriced listing that had been on the market for months. The buyers reluctantly made an offer for the top price they could pay for the house. The sellers flatly turned the buyers down and said they would never sell for that price.

Three months and one price reduction later, the house still hadn't sold. The buyers were again encouraged to make an offer. They made an offer for the same price they did the first time, but the terms were more agreeable to the sellers. It was accepted.

Many unrealistic sellers never come around. Don't waste your time on sellers who don't have a strong motivation for selling. There's a big difference between sellers who want to sell only if they can get an unrealistic price, and sellers who have purchased another home and have no need for the current one.

Until you have an accepted offer, keep your eye on the market; don't miss a listing that will work for you and is reasonably priced.  Good luck – and keep trying!  You’ll find your perfect spot in the mountains!



For answers to your real estate questions, call Allison at 970-468-6800. Email - [email protected]. Her philosophy is simple, whether buying or selling, she understands that the most important real estate transaction is yours.  Want to know the value of your Summit County property? Visit  

Price is everything (just about!) - Market Recap

by Allison Simson

I hope the spring is treating you well!  We are enjoying a very warm, dry spring here in Summit County, CO... I'm not complaining... AND it is a little weird not having much snow in April! 

  Our market is proving to be steady as she goes right now... that's a good thing!  The number of sales is up slightly, prices still coming down slightly and inventory is down.  These are all signs of a market that is stabilizing....

Here's an interesting article on price and the market.

Prices always make news, as well they should. A price is an important factor in determining loan amount and equity position. Price determines whether someone buys, sells, or holds. You could say that price is everything.
With that thought in mind, home prices have been volatile in 2012, which has lead to volatile sales data. But though prices have been volatile, they have been trending higher. S&P/Case-Shiller's 20-city composite home price index shows prices increased 0.2 percent in February compared to January.
Though the S&P/Case-Shiller index is the most monitored index, it's a little stale, being two months in arrears. We were more interested in contemporary price data released by Zillow, which show home values were up 0.5 percent in its 30-market index. Zillow believes 19 of the markets it follows have either hit bottom or are expected to hit bottom by the end of the year. Zillow chief economist Stan Humphries advises, "For people who have been waiting to time their home purchase close to market bottom, it’s time to start shopping.”
Not to pat ourselves too hard on the back, but we've been offering similar advice for the past six months. Now, no one can precisely call a bottom, but you can get a “vibe” in your market through experience and information. More of the vibes and much of the information is turning positive in many local markets. To be sure, bad news can still be found, but if you wait for nothing but good news, the bottom will have long been gone.
Existing home sales prove that the news still isn't all good. Sales for March came in softer than expected, posting at 4.48 million annualized units, a 2.6 percent dip from February. The good news is that market dynamics appear to be shifting from mostly low-end homes to higher-end ones: the median national home price rose a strong 4.6 percent to $163,800.
As for new homes sales, the news was decidedly good. New home sales posted a better-than-expected 328,000 annualized units in March, after being revised strongly upward to 353,000 units in February. The national median sales price dipped 1 percent, to $234,500, in March, but we'd be surprised not to see a price rebound in April, because of a dearth of new homes. In fact, the supply of unsold new homes fell to just 144,000 in March – the fewest on record dating to 1963.
Mortgage rates, meanwhile, continue to skim along the bottom, though they're showing no inclination to move meaningfully lower. Again, we can't stress enough the risk/reward paradigm in the mortgage lending market: Even after a spat of bad economic news in Europe, rates hardly moved. This suggests to us that waiting for still lower rates means incurring a great deal of risk for little reward.


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Summit Real Estate
The Bright Choice
330 Dillon Ridge Way, Suite 10
Dillon CO 80435
Fax: 970-468-2195

Allison Simson, Owner/Broker, is a licensed Colorado Real Estate Broker