Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Retail Spaces Filling Up Again

Well, not nearly completely full here in Awesometown, but the article read today that I'm sharing about indicated that inland empire cities were finally getting multiple tenants vying for the retail space. Yep, multiple! That's wonderful.

Hit our own mall yesterday, late afternoon, to avoid the outdoor heat and lapped it 6 times with a dear friend. Noticed a lot of changes. Yep, I'm not a mall shopper at all. But, I did see new stores, some waiting to open up additional new retailers. Those are good things.

If retailers are feeling that it's time to start opening more stores, we are certainly further on the road to our economic recovery. They obviously feel we are starting to have some surplus money to spend.

I hope all of you are in a better position today than a few years ago. 
Now, get out there and do some shopping!

Lauren Lefkowitz Greber ~ Realty Executives Valencia

Friday, July 25, 2014

Would It Be Zillia or Trullow?

Lots of buyers look, and sellers too, at Zillow and Trulia, Redfin, Realtor.Com, as sources to find homes and compare their existing homes to others.

That's fine with me! I have nothing to hide. I believe that everyone deserves to look at anything and everything they want.

But, I do still feel that the majority of buyers and sellers completely depend on a licensed Realtor to assist them in a home buying or selling purchase.

And...I know don't start a sentence with And......I believe that those are the ones that come out of a buying or selling transaction with less likelihood of any issues later. Well....that is if they use a good agent of course.

I'm not going to tout the righteousness of my chosen career. I know that my clients are much better offer....really MUCH better off...using me to assist them. I can't guarantee that with every other agent out there, but that's why mine keep coming back and referring to me.

I don't need to pay for leads, that's where my past service pays off. Treat people the way I want to be treated, protect them, educate them, make sure I do the best for them. I don't need Zillia or Trullow (LOLOL) to sell me their leads.

Going a tad off topic here. All I want to point out is that it would be easier for internet home searchers to have it all in one site. But, trust me, some other site will come along and say they are better than the combined big dogs. And (whoops there I go again starting with And), trust me yet again.....there will continue to be some ridiculous errors are their part. Their answer to those errors? They let any schmo put up information....if they pay to do it. They don't, however, verify it's accuracy.

Anywhohow, Zillow and Trulia thinking about combining. Surely a bunch of agents will be freaking out. Not little ole me though. I just keep doing an excellent job for my clients and they keep referring new clients to me!

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Would You Buy A House That Was Supposedly Haunted?

Oh goodness, I just read the funniest article! About a company that specializes in selling properties, that claim to be, haunted houses!

One of our local area seller disclosures asks if the home is stigmatized, or haunted. Most sellers actually laugh about it. One seller tried to tell me theirs was, but then started laughing and told me it was the neighbors remote control for the ceiling fan.

I did have an unusual haunted home though. Well, so says the buyer and the seller. Owners hadn't lived in the home for many years, they had moved out of state and turned the property into a rental.

I represented the seller on this transaction. A few months after closing I ran into the buyer around town and she asked me if the seller had mentioned if they ever had a ghost? I looked at her rather shocked but she calmly described that her young son, about 2 or 3, frequently had conversations with a nice man in their loft. Enough so that the buyers took it seriously. I called my seller and they remembered that their son, who at this point was about 9 or 10, had a 'friend' in the loft when he was a toddler too! Weird you say? I don't know. My only experience in a haunted house. Fortunately it was a friendly ghost. I've seen the buyer again around town since there and the loft man doesn't come around anymore. But, her son is now in that 9-10 age too. Gotta wonder about the history on that home and/or neighborhood.

But, the point of this story is....would you purposely set out to find a home that was haunted to buy and live in? Would you purposely not buy a home that you found out was supposedly haunted?

I'm curious what my readers think. Haunted or not haunted, would you or wouldn't you? Very curious!

~ Lauren Lefkowitz Greber ~ Realty Executives Valencia ~ Lauren@KeepYourWitz.com ~

Friday, July 18, 2014

Inheriting A Property May Cause Financial Distress

When someone inherits a property upon a death sometimes it's a great thing to keep it in the family. Or maybe for the surviving spouse still to have a place to live.

However, what if the survivor, or inheritor, can't necessarily afford the mortgage? Or what if they aren't even on the loan to begin with? Then what happens?

Getting a property due to a death that has zero debt is wonderful. Getting one that has a debt, sometimes is not so wonderful.

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau  has issued a new ruling so that the lender can't foreclose on the survivor, regardless if they are on the mortgage or not.

"Losing a loved one should not mean also losing your home. Today's interpretive rule makes it clear than when family members inherit property, they can take over the mortgage without jumping through unnecessary hoops" said CFPB Director Richard Cordray. " This gives heirs an opportunity to work with the lender to pay off the loan or seek a loan modification.

The ruling took place in the beginning of this year. It won't necessarily put the inheritor on the loan but it gives them virtually the same rights.

One less thing to worry about when a loved one passes.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Will The Fed End The Stimulus Bond Buying Program?

The Federal Reserve, our 'Mother' banking nerve, has been tapering off the buying of mortgage backed securities at every committee meeting since the end of last year.

Remember, we all freaked out? Thinking rates would sky-rocket?

Rates have still remained relatively low....yeah, yeah, yeah 'for historical rates'!

At any rate....pun intended....expect that they likely will discontinue the stimulus program as we continue to improve our own economy. They've helped for a long time and seems like this, one of the last few bandaids, may be getting pulled off before the end of 2014.

Lauren Lefkowitz Greber ~ Realty Executives Valencia

Friday, July 11, 2014

Concerned With Foreclosure Stats Bumping Up?

An article read indicates not to be worried. Only up less than 10% with 1/2 of those 2nd time round foreclosure starts. Meaning someone that was in foreclosure before, did a loan mod, got current, and now is defaulting again.

We are however, year over year, down by over 30%. So, although it's a little scary to hear that, it's still down from where we've been.

I think it's wise to be careful, wise to not give money to people that shouldn't have it, wise to be aware. I do believe we are continuing to get out of the black hole we went into, but it's still a bit grey.

Lauren Lefkowitz Greber ~ Realty Executives Valencia

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Awesometown MLS Numbers for July 8, 2014

Well, it's not just Awesometown that I'm reporting on but I do get a kick out of calling it that!

So, let's see here....as expected inventory is increasing rapidly!

ACTIVE in all of Santa Clarita Valley (Including Acton, Agua Dulce, Canyon Country, Valencia, Saugus, Newhall, Stevenson Ranch, Castaic, & Val Verde) ~ We have 808 homes available for sale! Yes!

Under Contract ~ 577

Sold in the last 30 days ~ 296

With these kinds of numbers we are now pushing a 3 month supply of homes! Yet, I still have 3 home buyers that I can't find the right home for! 

Let's see what the weekend brings!

Any questions about Real Estate in all of Southern California, I'm your girl!

Lauren Lefkowitz Greber ~ Realty Executives Valencia 

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Remember All Those Investors That Bought Up Foreclosed Properties?

Not the ones that bought at court house steps. The ones that were allowed to buy in large group quantities?

Well, they've had them as rentals for a while. Now, they are packaging them for sale to other investors.

Why you ask? Because they are likely tired of being landlords, values have gone up, they can fill their coffers with cash instead of houses.

Ah, to be one of those original investors!

Just really a Real Estate FYI. What does it mean to you? Well, my thought process for a buyer is ultimately more inventory. To a seller, hmmmm, well ultimately more inventory means ultimately more competition.

And, piggy-backing on my post from last week......less likelihood of another housing bubble anytime in the near future.

For any of my thoughts on Real Estate, just give me a jingle! 
Lauren Lefkowitz Greber, Realty Executives Valencia
(661) 964-1600 x 3317