Monday, August 04, 2014 / by Marilyn Perna
Schools are a contributing factor for anyone buying a home. Even if you don’t have kids yourself, your next buyer might, and they might base their decision to buy on the school district which serves your home.
The question remains: How do you evaluate schools? What’s the best approach for understanding if your local schools will score your property an “A” or relegate it to the land of “D-”?
Luckily, there are some excellent resources out there for vetting schools online. Here are a few I’ve come across which provide a good place to start:
Education.com: A major portal site for education everywhere, you’ll want to pay particular attention to the schools section, found here: http://www.education.com/topic/school-and-academics
GreatSchools.org: A good search engine for researching schools, you can do zip cod ...
Monday, July 28, 2014 / by Marilyn Perna
<a href="http://s863.photobucket.com/user/TeamWilliamsSells/media/Homes/CaliforniaBungalow.jpg.html" target="_blank"><img src="http://i863.photobucket.com/albums/ab196/TeamWilliamsSells/Homes/CaliforniaBungalow.jpg" border="0" alt=" photo CaliforniaBungalow.jpg"/></a>
Think you’ve found the perfect home? Think again. There are three little details which can turn an ideal house into the world’s most annoying location. Before you make your offer, take into account these three small, but surprisingly important details:
#1: “Let me call you back on my landline.”
Does your future dream home have cell reception? Check your signal when you’re on the property and see if it has dead spots, poor/limited data connections, or flat out “NO SERVICE” messages. This is especially important if you telecommute or had planned on skipping a landline entirely. While you can try and live on VoIP co ...
Thursday, July 17, 2014 / by Marilyn Perna
Buyers -- I’m here to save you pain! There are myths about the home shopping experience that must be addressed. I like to make the home buying experience as stress-free as possible, so please hear me out on these three big myths about home buying:
Myth #1: “That house has been on the market so long I bet we can work the seller down easily.”
Not necessarily. Exceptionally high days on market could mean almost anything. The seller could be bullheaded about their price. The seller may not be particularly motivated to sell for emotional or other personal reasons. Don’t forget: A sales-weary seller isn’t likely to respond to your host of rational reasons why their house should be a bargain.
Myth #2: “I want to look at foreclosed homes because they’re a real bargain and the banks need to unload them.”
Banks, like entrenched sellers, don’t always ma ...
Sunday, July 13, 2014 / by Marilyn Perna
A recent Fannie Mae survey shows that more than 90% of the nation’s consumers believe that home prices are likely to rise. Nationwide, home values rose as much as 10 to 20% last year. Many consumers expect at least another 3 percent rise in the coming months. The increase in Los Angeles housing prices was above the national average increase of 14 percent, said Craig Lazzara, senior director of index investment strategy at S&P Dow Jones Indices. “What we’ve seen is the recovery is solid and has strengthened over that entire 12-month period,” Lazzara said. As a result potential buyers should start looking sooner rather than later.
California median home price to increase
Economists anticipate that the California median home price will increase 6 percent to $432,800 in 2014. “We’ve seen a marked improvement in housing market conditions in a year with the distressed mark ...
Monday, July 07, 2014 / by Marilyn Perna
In case you haven’t been following it, there are big changes on tap for the lending industry in 2014. The January 10th change may make it tougher for certain buyers to qualify for a loan, though the overall goal of the changes are aimed at long-term consumer protection and mortgage industry stability.
Below are highlights of the three rules most likely to impact buyers. A complete PDF guide explaining all of the changes may be downloaded at the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (http://www.consumerfinance.gov/mortgage/).
1. The Ability-to-Repay Mandate sets a standard for “qualified mortgages”
Lenders will now be required to follow uniform guidelines to determine borrower eligibility. This looks at income, assets, and other debts / obligations. The mandate was designed by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau to qualify each borrower.
2. FHA loan limits drop
The upper mortgage limit determine ...