If John or Angela ever invite you over to their home in Red Top, do not turn down that opportunity. The company, food, conversation, and atmosphere are always unique, warm and inviting at the GutenTong residence. We hung out with the family at their beautiful property earlier this fall, to learn how these locals found the home of their dreams with a little bit of luck, a lot of intention and creative financing through Bank of Jackson Hole.
John Gute and Angela Tong tied the knot in 2013, when their daughter Jazzy was a year and a half old. At the time, the family lived in the 750 square foot condo Angela bought in 2008. In the back of their minds, they always knew they would outgrow the condo, and so when Jazzy was three, they moved into series of rentals to gain more space. Angela and John are both savvy businesspeople, and when the market was hot, they sold their Aspens condo in 2019. They were constantly looking for a home to purchase over these years, but it was a challenge to find the right home that would work for them. John, who owns his own business, Vankind Designs, where he designs and builds residential custom home and van storage concepts, needed a workshop. Angela’s business, Chinese Medicine, Acupuncture and Yoga Therapy, is in Wilson, and so she was hopeful to stay in Jackson or Wilson, not to mention Jazzy loves Wilson Elementary School.
“After looking for nearly seven years for a home, it all became worth the patience and we finally found the right fit with the Gathercole home in Red Top the winter of 2020.21,” stated Angela. “Realtor Jason Pup Smith with Engel & Volkers, contacted me about the property, the sellers Jo and Bob Gathercole, are long-time locals, and they wanted the house to go the right buyers. They accepted our first offer, which was just below their asking price. The market was so hot at the time, and they could have opened a bidding war, but they chose not to,” she went to tell.
Next came financing.
The property has a rental unit, with stable long-term renters residing in it. John and Angela knew they could afford the jumbo mortgage required to purchase the property by taking into consideration the sale price with the down payment from their condo, the rental income, and their two incomes. However, not all mortgage lenders would look at this whole picture and were requiring a co-signer to take on the debt along with the family. That wasn’t going to work.
In steps Bank of Jackson Hole.
Angela is a long-time friend of Bob Biolchini, one of the owners of BoJH at the time. Bob connected Angela to Dawn Pruett to explore what a mortgage with BoJH could look like for the family, and in Angela’s words, “it was a night and day experience dealing with the corporate mortgage lenders compared to Bank of Jackson Hole. Dawn and her team at BoJH factored in our entire situation and wrote up their own loan. We got a great rate, and we needed a guarantor, but not a co-signer, and that made a big difference to our family who were offering to helping us as guarantors.”
Now, settled into their new residence, the GutenTong family couldn’t be happier, “Bank of Jackson Hole was the last piece of the puzzle to make this happen for us, and we are forever grateful. We love the space, the peace and quiet, the views, and of course the neighbors and trail system right out the back door.”