Industry Partner Spotlight: Todd Smith with Equity Colorado Real Estate
August 30, 2022
Todd Smith is a real estate agent with the Foothills Team at Equity Colorado Real Estate. Over the years, he has had extensive experience as an investor, buying and selling properties all over the the Denver and Foothills areas of Colorado. His unique background has given him the knowledge and expertise to help his clients make the most sound and informed decisions when purchasing or selling a home.
Tell us about yourself and how you got started as an agent?
I entered into Real Estate about 10 years ago, first as an investor where I oversaw major home renovations and remodels for resale or to keep as rentals. For this reason a lot of my buyers come to me for advice on investment opportunities, and/or assessing how much a larger remodel project would cost, such as finishing a basement or building an addition, or whether a property would be good as a rental. This experience has proved invaluable while working with traditional buyers as well, as I can inform them of some pitfalls to avoid and opportunities to keep their eyes open for. Oftentimes something small and inexpensive might feel scary to a less experienced home buyer, while at the same time, some items that seem small might turn into huge costs down the road.
What is your professional opinion on the Colorado Real Estate market right now?
This is a tricky question. Personally and professionally I never think it’s a bad time to buy a primary home, if you’re qualified and feel comfortable with the payments. When interest rates go up a bit (like they are currently), it’s a great opportunity for qualified homebuyers that don’t have a sizable downpayment to get their foot in the door. This is because they don’t have to compete with as many offers and oftentimes do not have to go above asking price and provide appraisal gap guarantees. They can also get normal concessions for inspection items. That level of competition and multiple offers, is what we’ve seen over the last few years due to lower interest rates, and first time buyers simply cannot compete in a market like that.
If you were buying a home in Colorado, which areas would you be looking in? What neighborhoods are next up?
My website www.WhereToLiveDenver.com highlights some of my personal favorite neighborhoods in Denver. Most of these areas I have videos, aerial photos and detailed descriptions, highlighting why I like these neighborhoods and what makes them unique. This could be walkability, location, great access to hiking/biking trails, great sense of community, etc. There are so many awesome and unique pockets within Denver it was hard to choose, but the ones I highlight tend to all have a combination of having a great little downtown area, good proximity to downtown and the mountains, and a good variety of housing opportunities. My team partner, Tanya Brown, and myself make up The Foothills Team, and we primarily like to focus in West Denver and the mountain communities in the foothills of Denver. We both have experience with mountain homes and new builds so that’s what sets us apart from a lot of other agents.
Any advice for buyers when it comes to the home inspection process?
I’ve loved working with Scott Home Inspection, as I think they do the best job of informing clients on what’s a true immediate issue, versus something that can be managed, maintained or replaced over time. The inspection period can be extremely stressful and often overwhelming for buyers and sellers, and it takes the right inspector to comfortably have a discussion with the buyer. I tend to focus on trying to get seller concessions for the bigger ticket items like the roof, water leaks, sewerline and foundation issues, and the rest can be done over time by the home buyer, handyman, or contractor as required. In general, my advice is to go into the inspection knowing that every home, no matter what the age, is going to have some issues arise. Being able to explain what is reasonable and expected, versus what is a serious concern is probably the most important part of the process.
What do you like most about your work?
Nothing makes me happier than helping a home-buyer purchase their first home. This can literally change someone’s financial situation and set them on the right path for the rest of their lives. I am first and foremost an Investor, so I’m always helping my buyers make smart real estate purchases. I love the process of helping someone add a second home as a rental property, or upsize and keep their primary as a rental. A lot of people are unaware of how many unique tactics there are available to invest in Real Estate, so I get excited helping them navigate those waters and figuring out the strategy that makes the most sense for them.
What hobbies do you have outside of your business?
My wife and I are avid rock climbers. I have been climbing for 25 years and it’s still a big passion of mine, although I have less time and I’m not in as good of shape as I used to be:) We also do the other typical Colorado outdoor sports like mountain biking, skiing and just hiking on trails with our dog and son. We enjoy heading into downtown or other areas to explore new restaurants, see a show, live music etc. We live just a few minutes from Red Rocks so we love to see music and hang out in the town of Morrison with friends as well.
What’s the best way to get in touch with you?
I’m always available and prefer to be texted or called on my cell phone. I love chatting with new clients even if they’re just starting to explore their options.
Corinna Bolton Fieger is a real estate agent based in the Denver area. She combines her years of experience in the housing industry with her extensive background as an educator to provide a top notch buying or selling experience to all of her clients.