Saturday, June 29, 2013

Still Waiting For The Right Time To Buy? You May Be Missing Your Window

Don't look back in a year from now and wish you would have done something. Yes, prices on homes have been rising and the market has been competitive. And yes, now we are seeing rates on loans go up as well. But are you sitting back watching all this, and waiting for the right time to buy? Are you waiting for that "bubble" to burst and the rates to go back down so that you can get that good deal on a house. I wouldn't hold your breathe if I were you. We've already watched the market take off so fast it could have given us a whip lash. And we have sat back and watched all these people buy homes in multiple offers and bid over asking for these homes. And it seems that you may think those people bought at the wrong time?  Well...I believe the people who have purchased homes so far this year were right on the money. While they may have had to jump through some hoops to get that house and they may have had to bid over asking, they were able to lock in these unbelievable rates on loans...and that is where the real money is saved. Because, here is the math...if you paid $30k more for a $500k home (with 20% down) than it was worth 6 months ago...well, that is $30k, and nothing more. But if your interest rate, when you bought this house at $530k, was 3.6% then you really got a great deal.  If you buy a house for $530k today (same 20% down) and you lock in a rate of 4.6% then you will be paying over $88k more for that home...and the rates will eventually only be going up. (See the math below) The real savings and deals on homes are found in the interest rates we have today. So don't look back in a year from now and wish you could have made a move...go ahead and do it today.

$530,000 price
$106,000 is 20% down payment
$424,000 total amount borrowed

3.6% loan for $424,000 = $1,927/ month
$1,927/mo x 360 months = $693,720
$530,000 price
$106,000 is 20% down payment
$424,000 total amount borrowed

4.6% loan for $424,000 = $2,173/ month
$2,173/mo x 360 months = $782,280
(total you pay with 4.6%) - (total you pay with 3.6%)

$782,280 - $693,720 = $88,560


Friday, June 28, 2013

Where Can I See Fireworks in LA?

All of these times and addresses have been copied straight from ABC's website so please check their website as well for any updates

Almansor Park
800 S. Almansor St.
Alhambra, CA 91801
Fireworks begin at 9 p.m.
See the show from anywhere in the park. Limited parking, so arrive early.

Artesia Park
18750 Clarkdale Ave.
Artesia, CA 90701
7 a.m. to 9:30 p.m.
(562) 860-3361

Annual 4th of July Parade, Fireworks Display, Dinner at the Casino
Golf cart parade down Crescent Avenue begins at 1 p.m.
Activities and fireworks at the Casino Ballroom
1 Casino Way
Avalon, CA 90704
(310) 510-1520
Tickets are $40 for adults, $20 for children

Starlight Bowl - July 4th Salute to America
1249 Lockheed View Dr.
Burbank, CA 91505
Gates open at 5:30 p.m.
Entertainment from 6:30 p.m. - 9 p.m.
Fireworks begin at 9 p.m.
Tickets: $17-22 for adults, $14-18 for seniors (60+), Children 2 and under are free
Purchase tickets online or at the Community Services Building, located at 150 North Third Street.

Calabasas High School
Gates open at 5 p.m., with fireworks at 9 p.m.
Celebration includes live music, rides, crafts and games
2855 W. Mulholland Highway
Calabasas, CA 91302
$10 admission price includes parking, entertainment and all activities; Children under 2 are free
Tickets must be purchased in advance

Castaic Lake Recreation Area
Independence Day celebration and fireworks
Mustic from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m.; fireworks start at 9 p.m.
32132 Castaic Lake Dr.
Castaic, CA 91384
All day for $25 a caroload at gate, $5 per person walk-in, children 5 and under are free
(661) 257-4050

Let Freedom Ring Celebration
Begins at 4 p.m., with fireworks at 9 p.m.
Free event open to the public
Cerritos Civic Center
18125 Bloomfield Ave.
Cerritos, CA 90703
(562) 916-1254

4th of July Festival & Contests
Memorial Park
840 N. Indian Hill Blvd.
Claremont, CA 91711
Pancake Breakfast from 7 a.m. - 10 a.m.; Tickets are $5 each
Opening Ceremonies at 10 a.m.
T. Willard Hunter Speakers Corner from 11 a.m. - 3 p.m.
Festival Booths and tables from 9 a.m. - 4 p.m.

4th of July Celebration Parade
Beginning at 4 p.m. at the corner of Indian Hill Boulevard & 10th Street
Parade route moves south to Harrison then west to Mountain Avenue, ending at Larkin Park
Spectators are encouraged to select their spot early

Fireworks Spectacular at Pomona College (Strehle Track)
333 North College Way
Claremont, CA 91711
Gates open at 6:30 p.m., concert begins at 6:45 p.m.
Fireworks begin at 9 p.m.
Tickets available to purchase for $8 pre-sale, $10 at the gate

Rosewood Park (parking lot of youth center)
2535 Commerce Way
Commerce, CA 90040
(323) 887-4427
Fireworks begin at 9 p.m.

Downtown Los Angeles
4rth of July Block Party in Grand Park
200 North Grand Ave.
Los Angeles, CA 90012
(323) 887-4427
Attendance is free, event begins at 3 p.m.

El Monte
4th of July Pancake Breakfast
El Monte Police/City Hall rear parking lot
11333 Valley Blvd.
El Monte, 91731
8 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.
Tickets: $5
Music, bike raffle and other prizes

Rowley Park (Baseball Field)
13220 S. Van Ness Ave.
(310) 217-9537
Fireworks begin at 9 p.m.

Hansen Dam
11770 Foothill Blvd.
Lake View Terrace, CA 91342
Celebration includes gourmet food trucks, music, raffles and live entertainment
4 p.m. - 9:30 p.m.;
Event is free to the public; Parking costs $10
(818) 891-9399

Hollywood Bowl
2301 North Highland Ave
Tuesday, July 2, 2013, 7:30 p.m.
Wednesday, July 3, 2013, 7:30 p.m.
Thursday, July 4, 2013, 7:30 p.m.
(323) 850-2000

Irwindale Park
4th of July Fiesta and Fireworks Spectacular
Fiesta begins at noon, Firewroks at 9 p.m.
(626) 430-2224

La Crescenta
La Crescenta Elementary School Playground
4343 La Crescenta Ave.
La Crescenta-Montrose, CA 91214-3806
Gates open at 4 p.m., close at 8:30 p.m.
Event features live music, carnival rides, food trucks and a fireworks show at 9 p.m.
Tickets are $7 each pre-sale and $10 at the gate, Children 2 and under are free
(818) 248-2271

4th of July Fireworks and Professional Bull Riders Show
Antelope Valley Fairgrounds, Entrance Gate 1
2551 West Avenue H
Lancaster, CA 93536
Professional Bull Riders Show begins at 7 p.m.
Tickets are required; $5 - $150
4th of July Fireworks Spectacular following PBR show (9:15 p.m.)
(661) 273-1336 or (661) 948-6060

Long Beach
4th of July Bike Parade
Granada Avenue Boat Launch Ramp
1 Granada Ave.
Long Beach, CA 90803
Ride your decorated bike along the Shoreline Bike Path
Contests for patriot speech and costume and watermelon seed spitting
Parade registration opens at 9:15 a.m.; bike ride begins at 10 a.m.

Long Beach
Long Beach Municipal Band Concert
Marine Stadium
E Appian Way & E Colorado St.
Long Beach, CA 90841
"Star Spangled Special" with vocalist Tony Galla
Free concert begins at 6:30 p.m.
(562) 570-3100

Long Beach
Jazz Concert
Long View Point in Willow Springs Park
2745 Orange Ave.
Long Beach, CA 90806
Begins at 7 p.m., free to the public
Bring low chairs and a picnic dinner and see area fireworks
(562) 570-3215

Long Beach
Party on the Pier July 4th
Belmont Pier
Long Beach, CA 90803
A day-long celebration with music, BBQ, kids zone, vendors and a fireworks display
From 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.
Admission is $20, $10 for kids which includes all-day pier pass and a BBQ plate
Fireworks display begins at 9 p.m.
(562) 477-6820

Long Beach
The Queen Mary
1126 Queen's Highway
Festivities begin at noon, with fireworks at 9 p.m.
Tickets: $39.99 for adults ($59.99 for VIP), $19.99 for children 3 and up ($39.99 for VIP), Children 2 and under are free
Free general admission to active duty military w/ID and military in uniform; $5 off for military veterans w/proof of service
Cost includes: ship access, walking tour, firework show and live entertainment
(877) 342-0738

Lynwood City Park (Baseball Fields)
Bullis Road and Century Boulevard
Lynwood, CA 90262
Admission is free
Festivities begin at 3 p.m.
(310) 603-0220

Marina del Rey
Fireworks begin at 9 p.m. and are launched from barge across the Marina's main channel
9:15 p.m.
Burton Chace Park (13650 Mindanao Way) and Fisherman's Village (13755 Fiji Way) are premier viewing locations
Parking fees range from $7 - $10
(310) 305-9545

Pacific Palisades
Red White and Palisades Blue 4th of July Parade
Sunset Boulevard, between Via de la Paz and Drummond
Pacific Palisades, CA
Parade starts at 2 p.m., with skydivers kicking it off at 1:50 p.m.

Pacific Palisades
Palisades Charter High School
1577 Bowdoin St.
Pacific Palisades, CA 90272
Gates open at 6 p.m.
Entertainment begins at 6:30 p.m., fireworks at 9 p.m.
Admission: $6 at gate, $5 online in advance, children 12 and under are free

"Americafest 2013" at Rose Bowl Stadium
1001 Rose Bowl Dr.
Pasadena, CA 91103
2 p.m. to 9:30 p.m.
Festival begins outside the stadium at 2 p.m.
Gates open at 6:30 p.m., with live music and entertainment at 7 p.m.
Americafest fireworks show begins at 9 p.m.
Tickets: $13 each, children 7 and under and active Military w/ ID are free
Parking: $20
(626) 577-3100

Pico Rivera
El Rancho High School
6501 S. Passons Blvd.
Pico Rivera, CA 90660
Gates open at 6 p.m., live entertainment begins at 7 p.m., fireworks at 9 p.m.
Parking and admission are free
(562) 801-4430

1101 W. McKinley Ave.
Pomona, CA 91768
Monster trucks, motocross and fireworks
Gates open at 5 p.m., show starts at 8 p.m., fireworks at 9:20 p.m.
Admission: price varies from $15 to $49, children 2 and under are free

Porter Ranch
Shepherd of the Hills Church
19700 Rinaldi St.
Porter Ranch, CA 91326
Gates open at 4:30 p.m.
Event features live music, inflatable bounces, face painting, food vendors and fireworks
(818) 831-9333

Redondo Beach
Seaside Lagoon
200 Portofino Way
Redondo Beach, CA 90277
Gates open at 2 p.m., fireworks at 9 p.m.
Event features food, swimming, live music, DJ and dancing, crafts, water sports, parade and more
Tickets start at $22 for adults, $15 for children 4 and up

Rosemead 4th of July Parade, Carvinal, 5K and Fireworks
Begins at 8 a.m.
Rosemead Park 4343 Encinita Ave.
Rosemead, CA 91770
(626) 569-2100

San Pedro - Cabrillo Beach
3720 Stephen M. White Dr.
San Pedro, CA 90731
Starts at 2 p.m., with fireworks at 9 p.m.
Free to the public
(310) 548-7401

Santa Clarita
4th of July Parade in Old Town Newhall
Parade starts at 9 a.m. at Hart Park
Goes down Main Street, turns onto Lyons Avenue, then up Orchard Village Road and disbanding at Newhall Park

Santa Clarita
Free fireworks spectacular
Begins at approximately 9 p.m.
Valencia Town Center
24201 West Valencia Blvd.
Valencia, CA 91355
(661) 250-3787

Santa Monica
2013 4th of July Parade
Begins at 9:30 a.m.
Parade route travels down Main Street, starting at Pico Boulevard, turns right on Marine Street, then right on Barnard Way
Parking available at Civic Center garage, Santa Monica Place and parking meters west of Main St.

South El Monte
South El Monte High School
New Temple Park
1450 Lidcombe Ave.
South El Monte, CA 91733
(626) 579-2043
Waterslides, live boxing, basketball contests and more
Celebration begins at noon and ends at 9 p.m.

South Gate
South Gate Park
9615 Pinehurst Avenue
South Gate, CA 90280
Carnival begins at 5 p.m. at Tweedy Blvd. and Hildreth Ave. and runs through entire weekend
Fireworks display at 9 p.m.
(323) 563-5479

Stevenson Rach
Dr. Richard Rioux Memorial Park
26233 W Faulkner Dr.
Stevenson Ranch, CA 91381
Festivities begin at 6 p.m., fireworks at 9 p.m.

StubHub Center
Soccer game and fireworks
Watch the game between the Los Angeles Galaxy and Columbus Crew, then stay for fireworks
Game starts at 7:30 p.m., fireworks to follow
18400 S Avalon Blvd
Carson, CA 90746

Studio City
CBS Studio Center
4024 Radford Ave.
Studio City, CA 91604
Event runs from 4:30 p.m. - 9:30 p.m.
Celebration includes live music, food and fireworks
Tickets: $20 for adults, $10 for children 6-12, free for children 5 and under; VIP tickets available
(818) 655-5916

Sunland Tujunga
Parade on Foothill Boulevard at 10 a.m.
Starts at Mt. Gleason and proceeds down Foothill Boulevard to the Sunland Park
Festivities begin at 5 p.m. at Verdugo Hills High School
Fireworks display at 9 p.m.
10625 Plainview Ave.
Tujunga, CA 91042
(818) 352-3420

Suzanne Park
625 Suzanne Rd
Walnut, CA 91789
Begins at 6 p.m.; enjoy face painting, games, a pie-eating contest and more!
Fireworks start at 9 p.m.

Whittier (Private)
Friendly Hills Country Club
8500 Villaverde Dr.
Whittier, CA 90605
Celebration begins at 6 p.m. with games, face painting, live music and a BBQ buffet
Fireworks at 9 p.m.

Woodland Hills
July 4th Fireworks Extravaganza
Warner Ranch Park
21820 Califa St.
Woodland Hills, 91367
Concert begins at 6 p.m., fireworks at 9:08 p.m.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Transfer My Current Property Tax To A New Home? Can I Do This?

While I know that my target audience on this blog may not generally be home owners over 55 yrs old, it is very likely you have a family member or friend that this could be very useful for.

Yes, you may be eligible to transfer the amount you pay in property tax to a new home here in California. This is a great option for someone who has owned their home for a long time and are looking to buy a new home. It is a one-time option. Here is the basics of how it works:
- You must be 55 or be severely or permanently disabled
- Both homes must be in the same county or a participating county
- The new home must be equal or less in value of the home you are selling

Of course there are a lot more in's and out's of how this works so please check out this website for more details Prop 60, 90 & 110


Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Just Sold-Burbank

Congratulations to my clients George and Yvonne that just closed on their first home. This was a joint effort with Judy Graff, a great co worker of mine. This transaction was a long and a bit bumpy but well worth it. They got a lovely house in an amazing area of Burbank and they will be calling this home for many years to come. I'm counting on an invite to their first BBQ!

Friday, June 14, 2013

Important Tips When Selling Your House In Today's Market: Summer 2013

Summer 2013 is almost on us and the market is starting to make a little bit of a change again. Here in the Valley, the homes that were once selling in the $500,000 or less are practically gone. Home prices have risen and there are going to be little to no more houses selling around that price point in Burbank, Valley Village, Encino, Valley Glen, and most of Van Nuys, North Hollywood and Lake Balboa. A lot of the spike in home sales were in that price range and now that there is little left, those buyers have either moved to looking at areas further out, looking at condos or just given up all together. If you are selling your home and your house is in the price range of $600,000-$800,000, there are some important tips you will need to know. There aren't as many buyers right now in this price range as there are for the the homes just below this. So you can't market your house the same way. Some sellers have thought (or been advised) to price their home higher than what it will sell for. Some people think that just because there are multiple offers on homes, and that people are overbidding on homes, that they can simply list their home at a much higher price than the one that just sold up the street and it will get many offers as well. This isn't the case and buyers aren't going for it. The buyers see home prices now and automatically think they may have to add $10k-$40k (or more) to the price if they want to get the home. If your home is overpriced, people will simply ignore it and when it's been sitting on the market for a few weeks, buyers will automatically assume something is wrong with the house since most houses have been flying off the market in a week or two. And if you set yourself up with a high price in your mind that your house will sell for, and you don't get those type of offers, then you may disappoint yourself and loose out. So, if the most comparable house to yours just sold last month, then price yours $10k or $30k below that. If there are multiple buyers in that area for your home, that will leave a little wiggle room still. And although many sellers were making buyers jump through hoops for their home by saying "sold as is" and asking for contingencies to be removed, this too will be coming to an end. Don't put your buyers into a corner, they will walk away. We will start to slowly be noticing the amount of buyers per each home lessen as the months roll on. Interest rates have started to tease the market with upward movements, and with first-time buyer's home prices now reaching $600k or more in most areas, there are less people who will be able to afford this. So sellers: when marketing your home this summer, market it graciously and don't expect to have such a dramatic show of offers knocking on your door as there have been the first half of this year. Do your due diligence and make your home very presentable, work with a broker who is going to know this market well and not just feed you what you want to hear. If you have a good real estate agent and they market your home well, you will still find good buyers to sell your home too.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Condos in LA Going For Multiple Offers

Well, the market sure is on fire. We've been seeing houses with 10-30 (or more) offers on them since around December 2012 but now it's the condos turn. You will see the trend start in the same fashion that the housing market did, with the most desirable areas and most recently improved condos going into multiple offers. Then very soon, the housing market recovery will be complete with most all single family homes and most all condos being sold fairly quickly when marketed well. The many multiple offers are here to stay for a while though, at least until the interest rates start going up. And even after that, it will remain a seller's market but maybe just not as competitive for the buyers as it is right now.  So what does this mean for you? Well, if you have a condo and you've been looking to sell it, you may want to start thinking about doing it now if your condo is in a good area and has been updated pretty recently. But this should be something you should really keep in mind in the next six months if your condo doesn't quite fit this description as well though. And if you have been thinking about selling your home, now is the time. This is the best seller's market we will see for a long time. The reason is, there are a lack of homes for sale, and interest rates are still very low, so these thing put together make for a very high demand on houses for sale which put you in a remarkable position as a seller. This will continue to be a seller's market for years to come if the market continues in the same direction, but this unique opportunity to position you and the sale of your house in the best way possible won't last for long. So please call me if you are thinking about selling so I can go into more detail about how to get you the best deal possible. And if you are thinking about buying, I have been busy helping buyers as well...but I'm never too busy to help you. Please feel free to call me if you have any questions.

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Before You Begin Looking At Homes For Sale, You Will Need This

It's June 2013 and the real estate market today is really in the seller's corner right now. Which means, as a buyer, you need to be as prepared as you can be when you are ready to start looking. Here are a few "must haves" before you even take your first step into an open house.

1. You absolutely must have a loan officer that has given you the go-ahead along with your budget to buy a home. This loan officer should have a pre approval letter ready to email to your agent on a last minute's notice. Things are moving quickly, and so should your loan officer.

2. If you are receiving any money from a parent to help with the purchase, you must have made all transfers into your account months before you are ready to buy a place. If you haven't done that and you are getting some money toward your down payment, ask your family member to put this money directly into escrow when your offer is accepted. (and be prepared that someone may ask for a paper trail of where any gifted money came from)

3. You must give your real estate agent a copy of your "Proof Of Funds".  This is any account you have that can be easily liquidated and used for the down payment at the close of escrow.  For example, if you are putting $200,000 down on a house, we are going to need a copy of a bank statement, IRA, stock holdings or another similar form of a financial account, that shows you have that money.

4. You must be careful about transferring sizable amounts of money in and out of your account around the time you wish to buy a home. So hold off on buying those new couches, and maybe reconsider selling your car until you are a new home owner. Banks are being meticulous about finding out where your money is coming from and going to when asking for this big loan for a home.

5. And last but not least, you must start your search with some extra patience stored away in your back pocket.  It may feel a little rough for some buyers out there right now, but keep in mind, when the right house comes along, it will fall into place, as long as you just put your best foot forward and keep trying. It may take you 7 (or more) offers until the right home comes along and you find yourself in escrow.

And don't forget, call me if you have any questions about anything real estate related and when you are ready to buy or sell, I am here to help. (323) 828-7777