Buying in Crested Butte

     Finding a Home in Crested Butte

Purchasing a home is probably the biggest financial decision you will ever make. Whether this is your first purchase in Crested Butte or you are moving on to a different home that better meets your needs, this decision must be made carefully.

Why Do You Want To Buy?

Are you looking for a second home? Are you looking for an investment property? Are you tired of paying rent? Have you outgrown your current home? It is important to identify your “needs” as well as your “wants” when searching for your Crested Butte home. Having a clear sense of your reasons for buying will help me to narrow down the options so that you can choose the right property.

Can You Afford To Buy?

Experts recommend spending between 30-40% of your income on housing. The tax benefits of home ownership can provide a considerable advantage over renting. If you are looking for property in Crested Butte and require a loan, you’ll need a pre-approval letter from a lender or mortgage broker in order to know how much you are qualified for, and this letter is also necessary to submit with any offer you make.

Charlie Workman- Peakview Mortgage Professionals, Inc.


Sarah Baskfield- Liberty Home Loans


Mark Ewing- Crested Butte/Gunnison Bank


Erin Renfro- Wells Fargo Crested Butte


      Preparing To Purchase a Home in Crested Butte:

Before you start shopping for your dream home in Crested Butte, it’s a good idea to make some preparations:

Proof of Funds

If you are planning to purchase a home in Crested Butte with cash, a Seller will want to see a proof of funds verifying your ability to pay in this manner. Be prepared to submit a proof of funds with any cash offer.

Build a Buyer File

If your purchase in Crested Butte requires a loan, a lender will request your financial records in order to secure financing for your home. A “buyer file” contains all your important financial documents, including but not limited to:

  •    Financial statements
  •    Bank account statements
  •    Investment portfolios
  •    Credit card statements
  •    Auto loan statements
  •    Recent pay stubs
  •    Tax returns for three years

Check your credit rating

If your purchase in Crested Butte requires a loan, your credit score will have a huge impact on what type of home you can buy and at what price. A premium credit score may mean a lower interest rate on your mortgage. Check your credit rating with a credit reporting agency such as Equifax, Experian, or Trans Union.

Be Careful With Your Finances

You want to approach home buying from a position of financial stability. Now is not a good time to make sudden career changes or large purchases so please keep this in mind while you’re searching for your dream home in Crested Butte.

      Choosing a Real Estate Agent

Purchasing a property in Crested Butte requires making many important financial decisions, understanding complex issues, and conducting expert negotiations.  Therefore it’s important to have an experience Agent that you can trust when undertaking such a large purchase. Here are some factors to consider when choosing a Real Estate Agent:

  •     Look for a full-time Agent who has experience completing transactions similar to yours.
  •     Ask how much time the Agent will have for you.
  •     Ask about their credentials and education. A good Agent will continually strive to improve and gain knowledge of the latest real estate trends.
  •     Does the Agent return your calls and emails promptly? Time is money when attempting to buy a home.
  •     Ask for a list of homes they’ve sold or a list of references.
  •     Choose an Agent who listens attentively to your needs and concerns. Pick an Agent with whom you feel comfortable.

      Time to Go Shopping

Once you have chosen an Agent and have made the above preparations, it’s time to find the home of your dreams in Crested Butte!

Take a Drive

Get to know the different areas in Crested Butte and the surrounding area that may be of interest to you. As your Agent, I will take you on a tour to get a better feel of the different neighborhoods and what each area has to offer. We will work together to get you the best sense of the different properties available and their price points.

Narrow your Search.

Select a few properties that are of most interest to you and as your Agent I will make appointments to visit each property. I will provide you with information about comparable sales in the areas you are interested in and the potential re-sale value of the properties you are considering. If you are interested in renting the property out, I can easily discuss the rental potential of each property and make recommendations for rental agencies.

Make an Offer.

Once you’ve picked out the property that suits you best, I will work on your behalf to submit an offer that is competitive with the current market value while also securing you with the absolute best possible price.

      The Contract Process

As your full time agent, I have successfully negotiated the purchase price and terms on your Crested Butte property. Congratulations! You are officially under contract. From start to finish, you can expect the contract timeline to run anywhere from 30-60 days. Within this timeframe, there will be several important steps to take and I will work with you every step of the way to ensure a successful closing. Below are a few factors to consider during the contract process (click the title to learn more about each factor):

The title company will act as a neutral third party holding all instruments necessary to the sale, including earnest money funds, deposits, and the Deed of Trust. The title company will research the complete recorded history of the property to insure that the title is free and clear of encumbrances by the date of closing and that all new encumbrances are properly added to the title. Some properties are subject to restrictions which limit various activities from building to parking restrictions. There may be recorded easements and encroachments, where others have limited rights to use your property. I will work with you to select the Title company that is best for you.

Recommended Title Companies:

Stewart Title of Crested Butte
Phone: (970) 349-0115
Gunnison County Abstract:
Phone: (970) 641-0710
First Gunnison Title & Escrow:
Phone: (970) 641-4600

You may wish to consult with me, an attorney, or tax advisor on the best way to hold title. Different methods of holding title have different legal, estate and tax implications, especially when selling or upon death of the title holder.

After you have gone under contract, one of the first and most important steps to take is to have professional Inspector evaluate the property. The Inspector may recommend other inspections, such as roof, chimney/fireplace, well, septic, or mold.

Recommended Inspectors:

Dave Baca- Absolute Home Inspection LLC
Cell : (970) 901-7015
Scott Thomes- Crossroads Home Inspection, Inc.
Cell: (970) 209-8544
Dan Carson- Anthracite Home Inspection LLC
Cell: (970) 275-2073

Keep in close communication with your lender, who will let you know when additional documents are needed to approve your loan application and fund your loan. The lender will often send an appraiser out to the property and you may pay a fee for this service. Appraisers are specialists in determining the value of properties based on a combination of square footage measurements, building costs, and recent sales of comparable properties. When you are within two weeks of closing, double check with your lender to be sure the loan will go through smoothly and on time.

Recommended Appraisers:

Dan & Lyn Ewert- Ewert Appraisal Services, Inc.
Phone: (970) 349-0820
Tara Lambert- Appraisal Group of Western Colorado, LLC
Phone: (970) 641-5748

Property insurance will be a requirement in order to close on your Crested Butte home. Here are some things that insurance agents take into consideration in order to give you the most comprehensive coverage: the age of the home, the style and age of the roof, age of the windows, condition of the siding, and proximity to services such as a fire department.

Recommended Insurance Companies:

State Farm- Richard Almgren
Phone: (970) 641-1407
Mountain West Insurance- Diane Markowitz
Phone: (970) 349-1144
Farmers Insurance Group- Gary Short
Phone: (970) 641-3641


The hard part is behind you, but there are a few more steps before you can move in to your Crested Butte property.

Final Walkthrough

The evening before closing or the morning of closing, you and I will conduct a final walk through to make sure everything is in order. If you are unable to be in Crested Butte for closing, I will conduct the walk through on your behalf.

Utilities and Services

You will have to change the utilities and services of the house into your name. I will  assist you with this process and make sure you have all of the contact information for each service provider.

Closing Escrow

Several days before closing, the title company will provide you with a copy of your “closing/settlement statement” that details all of the specific financial requirements of your home purchase. I will personally go over this with you to ensure its accuracy. At the last step in the buying process, the title company will have you sign the final documents, including loan documents (if relevant). When everything is complete, the title company will record the transaction for you at the County Assessor’s office, and you will officially own a property in Crested Butte!