Friday, November 28, 2014

I Didn't Coin This Phrase, But It Fits!

The 'Senior Sell Off'. Yep, it's going to start in the next few years due to the age of many homeowners, the Baby Boomers (I included) that will be retiring in the next 15 years.

I've been saying it for a while, watching my peers have grand babies. Hearing that so-and-so is retiring next year. Etc. I've been telling people there will be a drove of sellers that are retiring. Whether moving to a smaller home or moving to be closer to where their kids have started raising a family.....there will be many homes available for sale.

Based upon the age of your community there could be many homes available that are 'older' homes. Ones built more than 15-20 years ago.

Particularly in my specialty area, Santa Clarita Valley, where we have had a bevy of new construction over the last two decades. If you've read my blog for a while, you know I call Santa Clarita 'The Town of New'. New homes are what sell best in my market!

Hop in the Millennials, those under 33-ish, prepping to move into home ownership. These little lovelies are the ones that like newer homes. Fancy appliances, updated flooring, smart houses.....yes, different than what we wanted 20 years ago. Mostly because it wasn't available and times have certainly changed.

So, as a soon to be retiree, what do you do to make your home more desirable to a Millennial that comes a browsing? I find it interesting that a home stager feels it's all about staging. I love prepping a home for sale. Suggesting this, moving that, changing something else.

Unfortunately, as this market continues to rebound, we have home builders poised to build more new homes with all the bells and whistles. Gadgets that will be desirable to the Millennial buyer. Not everyone that is selling will be able to compete on that playing field.

And, while staging will help some, and pointing out upgrades is another......price will still be the thing that gets your home sold.

But, keep this in you are preparing for retirement......whenever you are considering upgrading, painting, changing this point in your life be aware of what a younger buyer may find appealing. Usually people do things in their home for themselves, something that makes them happy. Most of the time they don't do anything so horrific that it would turn off a lot of prospective home buyers. But now, as we are aging.....truly consider that next home project.....and ask yourselves....will it appeal to one of those dang Millennials??

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

A Bit Of Info On Foreclosure Activity

A couple of items to note. Via several different information sites. California was among the top 5 states to recently close on foreclosures. Meaning, the notice of defaults & notice of trustee sales were culminated in a full foreclosure. Okay, so we're still clearing out some old notices.

However, the newbies, the ones that are just coming down the pipe. New notices of defaults and notices of trustee sales are mostly in the Eastern states. Oregon on the west, but the rest on the East.

Still a ways to go, yes indeed. 
California is coming out of the poop pile finally it would seem.

(funny picture, isn't it?)

I only bring this quickie to your attention to satisfy your need to know. 
Any questions about So. Cal Real Estate, just ask!

Friday, November 21, 2014

I Sooo Wanted To Be A Detective ~ And I Am....Sometimes!

When I was a child I wanted to be a police detective. Not for justice and all that. But because I always liked to figure things out. I do believe in right over wrong though, so some justice! Mostly I loved to learn new things, determine what, where, when, why, and how.

Yeah, I don't see me wearing this outfit though! Do you?

I decided against it quickly as I didn't want to be a police officer of any kind first to get to detective status.

However, as a, we really are (if we're any good) a detective!

In any escrow there is the period that I call 'Discovery'. Aka, the contingency period. Discovering if it appraises. Discovering if buyer can truly get the loan. Discovering if there is anything substantially wrong with the property. Etc.

Most escrows we find little things. We discover items in inspections, termite reports, appraisals, and so on.

One I'm working on now.....discovery is sooooo much fun! Truly. Digging deeper than most would, investigating more than many. Finding out all kinds of interesting little things. Some potentially big.

Each and every discovery is for the protection of my client. To make sure that the property they are buying is going to work for them. Is safe, isn't zoned wrong, doesn't have any negatives not disclosed by the seller and/or not known by the seller.

I've had other agents think I go a bit overboard, too detailed on my personal inspection disclosure, looking further than necessary.

I'm a bit OCD, I'll give them that. BUT, if I was buying a property, I'd want to know everything about it as well. So, anything and everything I can help my client to discover, I'm all over it. 

It's the childhood detective in me I suppose! 

Friday, November 14, 2014

Spoiler Alert ~ I'm Not Big On Ginormous Punitive Damages

A homeowner that was struggling to avoid foreclosure contacted a company that said they could help negotiate his loan balance. I.E. Loan Modification. We should all know by that that we could do that ourselves.

The loan mod apparently kept changing, homeowner got peeved, stopped paying. The servicer then filed foreclosure proceedings. The homeowner then filed suit against the servicer. Not just for the breach of contract and good faith ($160,000) but also for punitive and compensatory damages which amounted to over 16 MILLION dollars! Yep, Sixteen MILLION!!

I believe that if he lost his home he should definitely be compensated. I believe that if he lost work, had medical problems, lost family, possessions, yes, he should be compensated. But, 16 MILLION dollars? For a home that wasn't worth nearly that much? I mean, not anywhere near that price point.

I was called into jury duty a few years ago. The plaintiffs attorney asked me how I felt about punitive damages. I told him I felt that it should cover expenses, lost wages, etc. but not an excessive amount .... just because they could possibly get it. I was excused. Go figure.

So, while I believe in home ownership. Believe that no one should be kicked out of their home. No one should suffer a loss, of any kind, due to inappropriate mortgage proceedings. I do not believe in the magnitude of a 16M award for this homeowner.

If I've pissed you off, I apologize in advance.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

How Appropriate & Wonderful For Veterans Day Today!

Nothing better than waking up to a text message from a listing agent that my clients offer was accepted. Well, except for today! That buyer is a Veteran, today is Veterans day, and he is utilizing his VA benefits for a home loan with zero down! Now that is definitely better than any other!

I have never been one of those agents that is only focused on what I make. I am always focused on what I can do for my client to make the home buying and/or selling experience as easy as possible.

I take great joy when we hear it's accepted because I know that it creates great joy in the hearts of my clients.

But this family.....phew.....couldn't be more happy, proud, thrilled, heart-filled, for them. Still got to get through the escrow process, but to get their offer accepted? Awesomeness complete!

If you are a Veteran, take a gander at this website ~ US Department Of Veteran Affairs ~ Home Loans ~ there just might be a way we can help you get a home too!

 Thank You to all of our Veterans today and always! 
A very special congratulations to my Veteran clients today.....well, and always as well!

Friday, November 7, 2014

Real Estate Commissioner Says California Not In A Bubble

Due to his watching subdivided land, licensing of Real Estate salespersons & brokers, and timeshares. That's his commanding word!

I'll take it. I know a lot of people were thinking we were creating a bubble. I also know we are seeing more people get their salespersons license. But, I've also seen enough price reductions to know that we certainly aren't creating a bubble with the likelihood of bursting anytime soon. Not saying what the next decade will bring, just not now.

What intrigued me the most was the number of licensed salespersons in California in 2007 (549,244) compared to the number earlier this year (402,629).

Surely as the market continues to improve, the number of agents licensed will increase.

Law of nature....Real Estate nature!
This one, the Law of Attraction for sure!

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Get Married, Buy A Home! Really?

Now, that's a funny article that prompted this blog post! Survey says.....that the percentage of people getting married...well not getting married, is equitable to the percentage of people not buying homes.

I find that mildly interesting. Yes, people commit by marriage, have some children, buy a home. But, I do believe that people buy homes as investments too. Smart ones buy them as ways to earn equity in their pockets vs. a landlords pocket. Married or not, people are buying homes. Well, I've got people buying homes!

I list homes for people, single and married. I help buy homes for people, single and married. Sometimes they are just one buyer or seller, sometimes two, sometimes married, sometimes not. I'd have to go back and look through the last couple dozen transactions. Wait, let's, 50% were of the not married variety! And, those were buyers and sellers!

So, I'm not buying it, not in my market place. I must work with smart people. Well, what's that old saying.....flock together, birds and such. I've got some intelligent birds in my group of clients.

Would you only buy a home if you were getting married? Or, if you were having children? Come on....really?