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Newlywed Couple Shares Their Denver Homebuying Experience

Posted at 07/26/2021 02:03 PM by Pat O'Connor

homebuying in denver

Erica Ivack and Ned Linehan represent a new wave of homeowners in Denver who have taken advantage of the ability to work remotely.

Originally from Pittsburgh, the recent newlyweds decided to get married in Denver and ultimately decided the Mile High City was going to be their new home.

While the couple’s home buying experience may not be typical of most, it illustrates how it can be done efficiently and effectively despite an extremely competitive market. If you've been debating whether now is a good time to buy, Usaj Realty would love to walk you through your options and help you determine if now makes sense to start building wealth through a home purchase. According to First American, "for the majority of households that transition into homeownership, the most recent data reinforces that housing is one of the biggest positive drivers of wealth creation."

Set Yourself Up for Success with a Plan

Erica and Ned worked with Usaj Realty real estate broker Andrea Henderson on the purchase of their new home. By keeping an open mind on Denver neighborhoods and the type of home they wanted, the couple eventually found a “perfect” home for them.

“We were looking for a home in a walkable fun area,” they commented. “It did change over time, however. At first, we were looking for a Victorian home with a lot of charm but we ended up falling for a modern newer build. And yes, that’s a big switch but we understood the importance of being open-minded and not focusing on any one style. It was important to not get bogged down.”

Being newcomers to the area, Henderson helped Ivack and Linehan get a feel for the various neighborhoods and how they could best set themselves apart from others when making an offer. By showing them comparable real estate sales, explaining ways to get an offer accepted, and being flexible with terms, they were able to get under contract in just two weeks.

Furthermore, they took a huge leap of faith by purchasing the home sight unseen.

“Andrea set us up for success from the start!” they said. “She educated us about the current market in Denver and explained numerous strategies on how to give the best offer on a house. She also listened to each and every detail of what we care about in a home and helped us find our dream house.

“We were only looking for a house for two weeks! We made just one offer and it was accepted. The only challenge we faced was that we could not visit the home in person because we live out of state but Andrea gave amazing video tours that showed us every detail of our home!”

Location Often Helps Seal the Deal

The pair ended up with a unique single-family home in the popular Sunnyside neighborhood. Situated on a corner lot, the five-year-old, three-story contemporary house features loads of natural light, a rooftop deck, a gourmet kitchen, and a fireplace upgrade. It’s conveniently located close to shopping, popular restaurants, I-25, and the RTD light rail station. 

“Erica and Ned told me the very first day we spoke by phone that they loved sports and wanted to be close (if not walking distance) to downtown,” explained Henderson. “I knew I was going to focus on finding available homes in the Sunnyside, Highland, and Chaffee Park neighborhoods."

"Ned and Erica toured their home via Facetime. After the tour was concluded and they realized they loved it, naturally the next question they had was, 'How is the neighborhood?' So, I walked down the street and stopped a couple out walking their dog, and asked if they lived in the neighborhood. They said 'yes.' I explained that I had clients on video that wanted to know what it was like living in the neighborhood. They raved about how much they loved it, that it was a 25-minute walk to downtown, quiet and safe, with lots of great restaurants and coffee shops nearby. It was exactly what Erica and Ned needed to hear to confirm that this was to be their next home.”

Being Flexible, Showing Willingness to Compromise is Critical

One of the keys to Ned and Erica's success in finding their home was their determination to identify and close on a home quickly. Their flexibility and resolve obviously paid off.

“They were successful in purchasing their dream home in a matter of six weeks from start to finish because they were incredibly decisive,” said Henderson. “I showed them a video tour of a historic Victorian home in Lincoln Park and while they loved the character of the home, they realized that they wanted something more turnkey, remodeled, and more recently built. I shifted the search and we submitted their very first offer on the third house they saw.”

“They were one of the first buyers to tour the home right when it came on the market. You want to move fast and see homes quickly. I think it's advantageous to be the first offer in and we were. We went in full price and were under contract an hour later.”

Final Thoughts

Obviously, not everyone shopping for a home is as fortunate as this couple. Many have to submit multiple offers before having one accepted. Others experience burnout. 

“The best way to keep buyer burnout to a minimum is for buyers to know their goals, stay focused on them, and most importantly have fun with the process,” reminded Henderson. “My hope is that every realtor sets their buyers up with everything they need to know when buying in the Denver market, such as knowing what they want and making a decision quickly. Buyers should have all of the tools ready for execution (appraisal gap guarantee and inspection limits, etc.).”

And when asked for any suggestions/tips for people who are beginning their journey to buy a home in the Denver market, Erica and Ned wasted no time with a response: “Move fast and go with your gut!”

Learn More About Home Buying in 2021

Posted by Pat O'Connor

Pat O’Connor has dual citizenship in both Wisconsin and Colorado, having been born and raised in Wisconsin Dells, but later adopted by the Centennial State. A graduate of the University of Colorado (B.S. Journalism, 1980), O’Connor began her career as a sportswriter at the Boulder Daily Camera under the tutelage of the venerable Dan Creedon. Her experience also includes stints in public relations at Aspen Highlands Ski Area, the Colorado Trial Lawyers and the Colorado Division of Wildlife. When she isn’t piecing together sentences, the self-proclaimed “Cheesehead” enjoys hanging out with her three kids and assortment of family pets, running, playing golf, hiking 14ers, horseback riding and skiing. As a mother to two (at one time three) competitive swimmers, her favorite fragrance is eau de chlorine. During football season, she can be found cheering for the Buffs on Saturdays and screaming when the Packers score on Sundays. She loves talking sports and giving recommendations on cheese curds.

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Topics: Home Buying