Friday, June 27, 2014

Worried About A Housing Bubble....Not Here

So, we definitely had a HUGE bubble burst just a few years ago. People are watching prices go up and are concerned that we will have another one.

I say no. Well, I say not here in Santa Clarita Valley. Why, you ask? Or, I guess that would be why not?

Because our inventory is climbing. We are just under 800 active homes in our MLS as of right now for our little Awesometown neighborhoods. As that continues to climb, sellers have to be more careful of their list pricing.

Showing property to a new couple today. Only 2 homes, but looking at the comps, they are both over-priced! Really, one by only about 10-20k, the other....sheesh, almost 35k.

Early in the year, and last year, they may have been able to get that with the shortage of inventory. But, not so much now. Well, not out here. Can't guarantee how Real Estate is in all of California. I can tell you in San Fernando Valley it's cooled a bit too, but some properties are still very Hot! One couple we wrote an offer on a little house in North Los Angeles area and it has 15 offers. But, that's cooling, trust me....beginning of the year, it would have had 30!

This is my take on Real Estate right now. I've read articles that say we are still below normal pricing. I laugh at that. Nothing stays normal in Real Estate. But, my associates and I are saying we are returning to a Normal market!

Feel free, keep poking at that bubble, I just don't see it bursting again for quite some time!

Lauren Lefkowitz Greber ~ Keep Your 'Witz' About You When Buying Or Selling Your Home

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

The Newest Want In Real Estate...Or Is It? You Decide.

Walkability....the buzz word that will start to fill sellers ears. Sooner than later. How walkable is your neighborhood? How close to the nearest park? How far to walk to Starbucks? Are there shops that you can stroll around and look at....nearby? Within walking distance? Or does everything need to be gotten to by vehicle?

Walkability.....does your home fit in that category? 

It's what the next generation seems to be looking for. The Los Angeles area is awesome for finding walkable neighborhoods. SCV.....not so much, just yet. We have the Patios at the mall, and Town Center Drive. But, how close are those to your home? We have lots of Strip Malls, but that's not quite the same as what the hipsters are looking for.

While SCV does have a ton of other great qualities, the hip walkable neighborhoods? Um, not so much.

I've been showing homes in Highland Park, Mt. Washington, Glassel Park, Silverlake, those kinds of areas that are showing gentrification and that have some really cute streets....where people love to wander. Walkable. Yep, walkability.

So, I ask you....does your home have the walkability factor going strong?

Friday, June 20, 2014

The Mortgage Relief Continues With SunTrust Bank Almost One Billion Dollar Settlement

Almost One Billion Dollars in relief? Wow, that's phenomenal! It reminded me of Dr. Evil:

Great article read just a few minutes ago that SunTrust will be paying out 968 million dollars in a mortgage settlement.

They are required to provide almost 1/2 of that in relief to underwater borrowers. 40 mill to about 50,000 homeowners that lost their homes and 10 mill to cover FHA, and other gov't insured, losses.

SunTrust also has to pay just over 400 mill to fix the mess of originating FHA loans that truly didn't match the requirements of FHA loans.

So, if you did, or do now, have a SunTrust home loan......just maybe you'll be part of this settlement!

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Stainless Steel Going Out Of Style?

I thought granite would eventually peter out...but it's still going strong. Tile is just about done, well at least ceramic tile. Some concrete counter tops are seen around town. But, pretty much, granite looks like it's still the leader!

But, what about those Stainless Steel appliances with all those smudgy fingertips all over them? Well, the brushed SS ones don't show the finger prints. Yet, a couple of scratches sure do show up on those!

Check out these other options I found in a Real Estate article I read this morning:

I think these are gorgeous! How about in Red? Which color would you like???

Friday, June 13, 2014

What Else Happens As The Market Settles?

Lots of articles that I read in the last few days are talking about the market settling down. Home prices rising just a tad, more inventory. You know, that kind of stuff.

While we as Realtors in Southern California have to be aware of how to get buyers into homes and sellers out of them, we also have to be aware of what happens to, not only the inventory of homes, but the inventory of Realtors.

What's that you ask? The increase of people that think what we do can be done by anyone. That what we do looks easy enough to sell a house or two.

Explanation? The last dozen years that I've been helping people in and out of homes has been a series of many wild crazy markets. Every market I could have encountered has happened in the years since I first got my license in 2002.

And, due to that, I've seen Realtors come and go. Newbies that thought it would be easier, older agents that just decided they had enough. So here we are again, the really freaking hard market is settling down. The saying 'When the Going gets Tough, the Tough get Going"? Well, trust me I got going like hell!

Since we are moving into one of the markets I've already traversed, I've had a half dozen people ask me about getting their the last two weeks....yep, just in the last two weeks.

Several of them I think have the smarts to be a great agent. Several of them have a strong data base to start too. All of them I would be willing to help...I love helping newbies!

Will they all succeed? Will they make a career out of helping buyers and sellers? Or, like many I've watched in the last decade, will they peter out and go back to a regular job?

I don't know exactly, but likely 1 or 2 out of the 1/2 dozen will continue and make Real Estate their life long full time career. The remainder.....just may not have the strength required to keep going....when the going gets tough....and it will me on that one!

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Some HOA's Can Foreclose On Your Property

Had a past client call me this week. There is a bit of financial woe and they are behind 3 months on the HOA fees. Wanted to know if they sold it could they wait to pay those delinquent fees?

Yes you may be able to, but there are a couple of things to consider. First, make contact with the HOA and let them know you would like to pay the balance at close of escrow. Second, be aware that some HOA's have the right to foreclose on your home due to delinquent fees.

In the last few years, we haven't worried so much about that as so many homes were in negative equity positions. However, as we have been moving into the place of positives in home values, there is more of a likelihood that an HOA would consider going after foreclosure to get paid.

As long as there is enough equity to clear any mortgages, attorneys, past dues, and then the costs to put it on the market and sell it....well, why the heck wouldn't they!?!?

 So, this short post is to just remind you that falling behind on your HOA dues, 
when you now have equity in your home,
 could very well put you in a position to lose your home.

Friday, June 6, 2014

Santa Clarita Valley MLS Stats June 6, 2014

Last year this time we had 381 active listings from Acton to Stevenson Ranch. This year, as of about 30 minutes ago we have 747! Yep, just like that big beast of an airplane from days gone by!

So, just like that airplane could seat a lot of passengers, this increase in housing inventory in SCV creates a lot more for buyers to look at!

MLS Stats:

Active ~ 747
In contract ~ 580
Sold in the last 30 days ~ 342

Last year the 30 day sales were at 327 in June. So, see? Still hovering with the same number of sales, just more to pick from.

I don't think I really need to explain what that means to buyers and sellers alike. If you have any questions, just shoot me an e-mail @

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

No Offer On The First Day?

The times are a changing! I took another new listing a week or so ago. Did all the pre-marketing considerations. Reviewed with seller the why's and what-for's about list price and what to expect when it first goes public.

But, Lo & Behold, this particular listing that I anticipated getting multiple offers on? Took 4 days to get the first one. After about a dozen showings too.

Great house, very limited inventory for this type. Always a popular floor plan!

But, yes, times are a changing in the Santa Clarita Valley Real Estate market.

I had an agent call me about it on the 3rd day. Asking if I had any offers yet? I honestly told her, surprisingly no. She and I both kind of laughed. She said she had the same situation happen very recently. Took her a whopping 8 days to get an offer on what she and her sellers expected to get in the first weekend.

I only share this with you as it's what is going on in our beautiful valley. San Fernando Valley is still hopping. Wrote 2 offers for a buyer there and although it wasn't the 27 multiple offers like early in the year, there were still 4 on one, and 7 on another. So, yes, I guess it's slowed down a bit too.

But, that's what happens. Inventory goes up, more to look at, not as big of a rush to throw the spaghetti at the wall and see what sticks. 
Well, at least not quite as much of a rush as there was just last year!