Great Reasons to contact Central Hills Real Estate, Inc.:

Competent, Honest Agents Knowledgeable of the Black Hills and Surrounding Areas
  • Licensed in the State of South Dakota.
  • Members of the Mount Rushmore Area Association of REALTORS and MLS serving all areas from Spearfish to Hot Springs including Hill City, Custer, Lead, Deadwood, Belle Fourche, and Sturgis.
  • Members of the Black Hills Board MLS serving Pennington County including Hill City, Keystone, Rapid City and Southern Lawrence County.
  • Specialists in Black Hills homes, land, and investment properties.


Despite advertising claims to the contrary,
the internet is not an experienced Real Estate Professional.

It cannot consult, counsel, advise, have knowledge of local laws and market conditions, make judgments, "own" the result, or m
ost importantly, understand your individual goals and needs and care about you as a Client.

To obtain an accurate interpretation of any information you're receiving online,
please contact us.
Kim Benning - Broker/Owner

Kim Benning was born and raised in South Dakota. He is a graduate of Redfield High School, the University of South Dakota (undergraduate degree), South Dakota State University (master's degree) and post graduate work at the University of Nebraska and the University of Houston. His previous career as an educator and high school principal brought him to Omaha, NE and Houston, TX before coming back home to South Dakota in 1990.
In the past 30 years as a Central Hills resident and a Hill City business owner Kim has witnessed Hill City and the surrounding area transform into communities that have flourished with real estate growth. Kim joined Central Hills Real Estate at its inception in 1996 and became Broker/Owner in 2002.
Kim is active in listings, sales, buyer's brokerage, and real estate auction representation.
To contact Kim:
Office: 605-574-6000
Home: 605-574-2250
Cell: 605-381-9227

What NOT to Do After You Apply for a Mortgage ~by Ted Richardson

Do not allow any unnecessary credit checks. The credit checks involved with financing offers and promotions are harmless right? Wrong, excessive credit checks may lower your score, leaving you unqualified for the home loan. Most lenders now use a credit monitoring program for all files currently in underwriting and if there are any inquiries added to your credit between application and closing, you will be required to validate what the inquiry was for and verify that a new debt account was not created as a result of the inquiry. This adds time and frustration to the underwriting process. If you have any questions regarding this, please call your loan officer.

Remember in regards to moving plans, landlord notices, and any other plans for closing date should be done cautiously and with a contingency plan in place in the event that closing does not occur on the planned date and time. Understand that lenders make every effort possible to close on planned date, and have no interest in delaying your closing and have every interest in a timely and smooth closing. But they do not control every aspect of the process and can only move forward as quickly as the other parties involved including YOU, the appraiser, the agent, the seller, the title company, the credit verifier, your insurance company, your employer, etc., etc., etc. For that reason please provide the documents requested as quickly and completely as possible as this is the single, largest, cause of delays.

Do not take on new debt. The temptation is strong. There are so many purchases that people want to make in connection with a move: appliances, window treatments, car leases, furniture, etc. When you add to this the fact that, today, everyone offers easy terms and no money down – well why not just do it? Answer: because you will change what the mortgage industry calls your “debt-to-income ratios” (the relationship of your income to your debt).

Do not move money around. Transferring funds and shifting money around causes many questions from your inquisitive lender. Where did the money come from? Why are the balances significantly different from last month? Where did you suddenly come up with several thousands of dollars? Even if the funds are your own, you will be asked to document, with a paper trial, any transfers or large deposits. The lender must consider that a large deposit could be a loan you have taken and may calculate this deposit into your debt-to-income ratio.

Do not change jobs. If at all possible, try not to make a career move during the time between your mortgage application and your loan closing. But, you ask, “What if it’s a BETTER job, for MORE money?” Still, try and wait to make the change, AFTER your closing. One of the factors mortgage companies consider is the length of present employment; they are partial to stability. At the very least, changing jobs initiates the need for more paperwork, and may delay your closing.

Do not pack too soon. Well, go ahead and pack your clothes and dishes. But do not pack your bank statements, tax returns, or other important paperwork. Especially, do not pack your checkbook! More than one buyer has had closing delays while a friend or relative hurried over with additional funds because the checkbook was in the moving van.

Do not shred paystubs or bank statements. Lenders may need to update bank statements or paystubs so please save them until you are closed.

In short, do nothing that negatively impacts your ability to qualify for your mortgage loan, or initiates a new round of paperwork. If you have any doubts about doing something that may affect your ability to qualify for your mortgage loan, please consult your loan provider before you do it. These suggestions are merely that – suggestions. No one is saying, flat out, that bad things will necessarily follow if you do any of the above. They are offered as cautions. Many buyers seem to view the mortgage application procedure as a static action, a snap shot of their financial lives at a given moment in time. It’s not. It’s an on-going process that takes into account everything you do right up until the day of closing.

In addition to traditional sales transactions, brokers of Central Hills Real Estate successfully represent auction buyers on an ongoing basis. Just in the past five years, we have represented winning auction buyers for large acreages, homes, businesses, and building lots in the Black Hills totalling over 3.3 million in sales.


Q. What benefit would I have to be represented at an auction by a Central Hills Real Estate Broker?
A. We are usually very acquainted with the property, the history of the property, comparable sales, the owners, zoning issues, the mechanics of the 1031 tax exchange concept, competing bidders, etc... Any one of these items could give you an edge while bidding on the property.
Q. What will it cost me?
Nothing. Commissions are pre-set by the auctioneer and the sellers. Auctioneers welcome the participation of buyer's brokers. Central Hills Real Estate does not charge our buyers any additional fee for our services. We get paid only if our buyer wins the auction.
Q. What is an Absolute Auction?
A. This guarantees that there will be a new owner at the end of the auction, regardless of the bid. (There can be some exceptions to this rule.)
Q. What is an auction with a reserve?
A. The seller can set a minimum price for which he/she will sell the property. If it does not reach this amount, they can 'No Sale' the property.
Q. What do I need to do to get prepared to bid at an auction?
A. If you are not a cash buyer, you should make your financial arrangements in advance of auction day. Buyers are usually required to put a NON-REFUNDABLE down payment (earnest money) on the day of the auction. This varies from 10-15% of the sale price. You will usually be expected to close the transaction within 30 days after the date of the auction.
Q. What if I can't attend the auction but I am interested in bidding?
A. We can and will bid for you. This will only be after we receive specific instructions from you regarding your maximum bid.
Q. What if I can't attend but we need to talk during the auction?
A. Your buyer's broker can call a recess to the auction so that we may confer by telephone.
Q. Can't I just go to the auction and bid?
A. Certainly you can. Just remember, the auctioneer is representing the seller's interest and welfare 100%. We will be representing YOUR interests and welfare, 100%

The Highs and Lows of Pricing
By Marilyn Kennedy Melia - CTW Features (Rapid City Journal, November 8, 2009)

Whether they're hoping for a specific moving date, or permission to take the hall chandelier, home sellers usually have a long list of wishes. But they'll usually walk away happy if just one desire is granted: they get a good price."
With money so key, doesn't it make sense to select the real estate agent who suggests the highest listing price? Actually, "The most common and most serious mistake made in real estate is pricing too high," asserts Diane Saatchi, senior vice president of Corcoran Realty, East Hampton, N.Y.
Basing your selling strategy on the highest listing price may prove downright deadly, say experts. That's not to say an agent who suggests the highest value is necessarily wrong. So how's a home seller supposed to select an agent, when all have varying value opinions? Sellers face the same problem - although from the opposite persepective - that consumers grapple with when they're collecting estimates for a repair. It's tempting to go with the lowest quote, but will that mean quality is compromised? Fortunately, many owners may have more knowledge about their home and how it compares to others in the neighborhood, than they do about what's involved in a repair, allowing a more informed choice. Here, some pointers on pricing and picking a listing agent:

Wise to Choose

First off, interviewing a couple of agents before deciding on who to place your listing with is smart. Some owners simply act on a referral, observes New York real estate attorney Neil Garfinkel. The standard advice is to call in three prospective agents, agrees Michael Corbett, author of "Ready, Set, Sold" (Plume, 2007). If someone has strongly recommended an agent, you may want to call in just one other, but balancing the recommended agents' suggestion against another's opinion help pinpoint the price, adds Corbett. Of course there's more to consider than just the price an agent feels confident about - his marketing strategy and your comfort communicating with him are key, too.

Time for Truth

Your ability to communicate with an agent is especially key in this uncertain housing climate. In some markets, prices may be declining, notes David McIlvaine, president of the Greater Baltimore Board of Realtors. Owners, rightfully proud of their home, can find it difficult to acknowledge values are slipping. An agent should be able to present serveral comparables - similar homes that recently sold. In some markets, gathering information about currently listed homes also is important, says McIlvaine, because that's how to discern price trends.
While it can take some honest reckoning to admit that it's unrealistic to expect to sell your home for what a similar one did a year ago in some markets, it may also be that your place has cetain amenities adding value. Investing about $300 to $400 to hire a certified appraiser to provide a professional, objective valuation report is another way for sellers to pinpoint price, adds Jim Amorin, president of the Appraisal Institute.

Right on Target

In today's market, a common mistake is to price too high initially, and then be forced to lower it. "The minute you start reductions, the bargain-hunters and bottom-feeders com in," says Corbett. That's why Corbett warns it's especially crucial to look at what current listings are for comps. If the trend in a particular market is down, the pricing on a home that the owner seriously wants to sell must reflect the trend. "You don't always want to be playing catch-up, re-pricing to try to catch up with the current trend," proclaims Corbett.

For sellers, then, finding an agent with keen pricing aim means they should hit their goal of selling quickly - and profitably.

To search the Mount Rushmore Area Association MLS click here:

To search the Black Hills Association MLS click here: