So you’ve just gotten word that your job is relocating you to a new city. You have to sell your current home, get your family packed, purchase a new home and get moved: and the clock is ticking.
Selling your home is likely the easiest part in the current up housing market; even so, the best place to start is with a qualified agent. An agent will be able to tell you the retail value for the home, and assist you with a strategy to get the home sold within your ideal time frame, they can even assist with finding you an agent in your new city. A lot of company’s often even help by assigning a corporate relocation team to your property to assist you with getting the home sold.
That leaves you with the task of finding a new home in a foreign market. Purchasing a home in a market you are already familiar with can be tough; now try finding a home in an area where you aren’t well versed on the market conditions, school districts, crime rates, traffic patterns, or nearby recreation.
You know that the first three rules of real estate are: 1) Location 2) Location and 3) Location (rules four and five are: “You don’t talk about real estate club”) but how do you buy in the right area when you don’t even know what the right area is.
Fear not, especially if you are moving to Colorado Springs and are planning on using our team to purchase your property. Colorado Springs is one of the top Sight-Un-Seen (meaning you didn’t actually visit the property prior to closing) markets in the country due to our huge population of transient buyers coming from military installments and defense contractors from around the world. So, we know a thing or two about how to get people educated quickly about the area, and from there help buyers target their ideal home and location.
The best two places to start are with crime statistics and school district reviews. There are thousands of resources for you as a buyer to review, and typically you can start to rule some areas in and some areas out just at a glance with these two reports. For Colorado Springs, we recommend you take a look at CrimeReports.com and for looking into school districts we direct our clients to Greatschools.org
Avoiding crime ridden areas should be a key objective for obvious reasons. Areas with high crime rarely show measurable improvement on short to medium timelines, and often can regress especially in deprecating markets.
After reviewing local crime reports we encourage buyers to start targeting and seeking out their ideal school district. Greatschools.org is a great jumping off point. It gives schools a score based on the academic performance of its students and ranks school districts from state to state. However, make sure this isn’t your only resource; because while certain schools may score very high overall, they may be under performing in areas that are of interest to you and your child. For instance, D12 here in Colorado Springs is one of the top 20 school districts in all of Colorado and often finds itself in the top 10, but it does not consistently rank as our city’s top school for arts, autism support, or athletics. Make sure to labor in the details when picking your child’s school, and understand that the out of 10 score that Greatschools.org provides does not tell the whole story.
Even if you don’t have children choosing to live in a high demand school district, is always a good investment strategy. I once heard Jeff Smith, the owner of Classic Homes say:
“We don’t sell homes, we sell school districts.”
What Jeff was highlighting is how directly tied real estate values are to the quality of its school district. Buyers will always be willing to pay a premium to secure a home in an area where they feel their children will perform better. As such these areas appreciate at higher rates.
One other strategy for folks not looking to base their purchasing decision on school district is to identify a location with nearby recreational interests. This could be proximity to anything from: golf, to paintball, to the theater. There really is no wrong answer here. If you are into it, chances are other folks are too, and there will be a select market that is willing to pay a premium for your location when you go to sell.
Next, make sure to contact a good agent that is going to put in the leg work to help you find the right home in the right location for you. A good agent should be able to direct you to the resources you need to help you make an educated decision on your home purchase. If you are not planning on making a visit to your destination prior to writing offers on the property you intend to buy, find an agent that is willing and able to make a quality video for you of the properties you’re interested in. Below is an example of a video we made for an out of state client:
If you can make it to your destination for showings, before putting in your offer then do it! Schedule showings in all of the areas that interest you. Make sure to have your agent take you to their favorite eateries, parks, and hangouts. Use your Realtor as a resource of local knowledge. While The Dream Team is always working hard to create new content to help educate people about our community, we didn’t reinvent the wheel with this idea. Where ever there is a city, there is an agent working hard to help people better enjoy their surroundings.
If you are relocating to Colorado Springs and need help finding a new home, or even just a list of our favorite summer breweries, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us.
And if you are relocating anywhere else in the country, don’t hesitate to reach out, and we can help you identify a Realtor that is going to work hard for you.