HIGHLANDS RANCH, Colo. (CBS4) – Mortgage rates are reaching all-time lows. The benchmark 30-year fixed rate mortgage hit 4.12 percent recently.

Home buyers want to take advantage of the low rates, but they also want to get a good deal on a house. With fewer foreclosed homes on the market, deals can be hard to come by. Some home buyers are having success getting good deals by buying from a relocation company.

Relocation companies help move employees to new cities for new jobs. In some cases that includes buying the worker’s house and selling it long after he or she is gone. Some of the requirements of these companies mean that home buyers get a break.

Steve Broadbent, Melissa Andrews and their two kids are settling into their new home in Highlands Ranch. The house is a perfect fit for the family – spacious, modern and close to good schools and recreation amenities; and it came at about $15,000 less than the comps for the neighborhood.

Melissa Ackerman, real estate broker with Redfin Denver, says that’s common among the transactions she’s worked on with relocation companies.

“The appraisals came in as much as $15,000 to $20,000 more than what the buyer paid for the properties,” Ackerman told CBS4.

“One Advantage coming into it with a relocation company having taken possession of the home is they had done their own inspections a head of time,” Broadbent said.

He and his wife had their own inspections done just for their own peace of mind, but many home buyers forgo the hundreds of dollars in inspection costs because the relocation companies get those reports before they take possession of the property. The relocation company also has the previous owners fix any outstanding problems long before the property goes on the market.

“We think there was an advantage in terms of timing and then also just … they probably didn’t want to hold on to it very long,” Andrews said.

Relocation companies have no emotional connection to the home and they want to get it off their books as quickly as possible – that makes for a more efficient deal.

“The negotiation … in our minds … it was more business like … as opposed to emotional,” Broadbent added.

“One of the negatives with a relocation company is that there’s a lot of paperwork,” Ackerman said.

She says the paperwork is double a regular mortgage deal in some cases.

– Written for the Web by CBS4 Special Projects Producer Libby Smith


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