Friday, October 31, 2014

Earthquake Insurance Or No Earthquake Insurance

Depending upon who you talk to is likely whether or not you have Earthquake insurance attached to your homeowners insurance policy.

I read an article this morning that says many people don't realize it doesn't come automatically. Really? I find that hard to believe. Regardless, your regular policy does absolutely not cover hazard from earthquake.

Are we due for one in California? It's been a while. You'd think we must be due. We've had some weird weather over the last year....maybe that's a sign? Hah. Who knows.

At any rate, I had EQ insurance for the 94 quake. Didn't help me at all due to the high deductible. FEMA helped us enough that we didn't have to take an SBA loan out as well. BUT, we had very little damage. We were much more fortunate than many others.

Could a natural disaster, such as Earthquake, hurt this recovering housing industry? Hell yes, it sure could.....particularly if there isn't enough money to go around to repair homes.

Not working on a scare tactic, just reminding you to check your policies if you think you are covered for EQ hazard. And, if you think we are due for one, may want to talk with your insurance agent about your options. As well as what options you have if there is a devastating EQ and you don't have insurance coverage.

Friday, October 24, 2014

Student Loans Held By Private Lenders Vs. Federal Lenders

So, students that are saddled with heavy loan burden trying to buy a home? Don't let it go into any default. Some of the private lenders will call it due immediately.

But, the topic of this post is really to open the eyes of every student debt holder out there, whether a federal or private student loan, that there can be modifications to your existing loan structure to help you not go into default.

Just like home loans, those student loans can be upwards of the price of a condo! So, just like home loans, borrowers can get behind.

If you are behind, the fed student loan is easier to find some help. The private one, not as much. But, check out our Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, they have some tools that can be found online so that it may be a bit easier to re-negotiate with your private school loan holder!!

Friday, October 17, 2014

The Dreaded 'Black Fuzzy Stuff'

When representing buyers there are a certain number of inspections that a buyer may need to do to assure themselves that the home they are buying is the right one for them.

Standard inspections may present a challenge. That being the acknowledgement of 'Black Fuzzy Stuff' or Fungus, or Mold. Call it what you will.

If I see it, I have to disclose it. If seller sees it, they have to disclose it. If any inspector sees it, they have to disclose it as well. If we learn of it, it has to be disclosed whether we saw it or not too!

Current escrow story. Home inspector noted suspect fuzzy stuff. Termite inspection noted fungus. Buyer elected, as is their right, to bring in a specialist as it was noted by two different qualified inspectors in more than one area of the home.

Mold was detected in the home in several different areas. Ugh.

The question that comes is, 'who's responsibility is it to take care of it?'. And, of course, to what extent. 

There is no exact answer. Many properties have mold in them. Unseen mold. Air spores. Anyone that is concerned about mold may call out for an environmental inspection during their contingency period.  Most don't, unless there is visible mold. But, we got mold, who's gonna take care of it?

As the buyers agent, my job is to protect my client. Determine what their needs are, how this discovery makes them feel, what the seller would need to do for buyer to continue with the purchase.

Some would say it doesn't matter as they are remodeling extensively anyways. Some would say throw some bleach on it. Some would do the remediation themselves. 

It's a personal choice. And, the discovery of the fuzzy stuff also brings up the question, how did it get there to begin with? What do we have to do to make sure it doesn't come back again?

Some are simple answers, some are structural/grading issues that need to be in this one.

We'll see how this unfolds. Hoping the agent, who happens to be the seller, takes responsibility for it.

Stay tuned!

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Mortgage Rates Below 4% .....Again!!!

Nothing better when working in Real Estate to get an e-mail from one of your favorite lenders noting that a 30 fixed has dropped to 3.875%! Holy Mortgage Rate!

Truly not what I expected! The interest rates for home loans are ridiculously low. Amazingly low. AFFORDABLY (yeah that's not even a word) low!

So, while I've got several buyers that I'm searching for, this is great news for anyone in the home buying or selling market.

Less buyers usually out home hunting in the last quarter of the year. I have a suspicion that this will keep them out there looking!

I am still in shock. This is remarkable!

Friday, October 10, 2014

Calpers Investing More In Real Estate and Less In Hedge Funds!

California Public Employees Retirement System is going to be investing more in Real Estate for long term financial wealth and less in hedge funds. I think that's a wise move. Note, I said, long term.

They are going for commercial and residential multi-unit, already occupied, properties. Good move on their part. Increasing their Real Estate investment by 7 Billion up to 27% of their portfolio.

I've got my retirement spread out as well. Some in mutual funds. Most, not surprisingly, is in income property. Ultimately I'm hoping, truly, to be traveling around the beautiful U.S. of A. in a big old A-Class motor home and seeing all of our nations fun and unusual sites. So, my current home will become another income property as well.

So, if you are part of Calpers, know that you are moving into my neck of expertise. If you have questions about anything Real Estate related, I'm you're gal!

If you realized that their thought process is a good one and wish to consider creating your own retirement wealth via Real Estate, feel free to give me a jingle and I'll help in any way I can.

Monday, October 6, 2014

Can My Children Make Something Change In The Housing Market?

Article read today about research done by a 'think tank' indicated that those Millennials (people born in the early 1980's to the early 2000's) will be counted for in about 22 million heads of households in the next few years. Almost a 10% increase since just last year!

1.6 Trillion spent on home purchases....about 600 billion to be spent on rent. Apparently more, on a per person situation, than any other generation. Interesting......I find this very interesting and heartwarming as well.

Many of our parents & grandparents grew up in a recession. Home ownership was so incredibly important to them. Wonder if this is part of the reason that these Millennials find the strong desire, despite school loans that are quite large, to be home owners. They've had a significant number of their growing up years watching their parents struggle with jobs, homes, debt.

If there is one thing we can provide our's the importance and value of owning a home or establishing their own home.

There is something about the independence and growth that is so invaluable when they can do that for themselves. I commend any Millennial for doing that. Whether it is this year, or per the report, by the year 2018.

I can totally see my children be part of the change in housing, how about yours?