Updated California Residential Purchase Agreement Coming Soon

September 16th, 2014

If you are a real estate agent in California you may have heard that there will  be a new Residential Purchase Agreement (RPA) on November 24, 2014. What does this mean to agents? First of all, it means you will need to learn how the new contract will affect your sales. Since many agents don’t bother to ready through the RPA on a regular basis, this is a chance to start off fresh and really understand how the document works and protects your buyers and sellers. http://www.dreamstime.com/-image9839542

Here are some of the highlights of the new RPA.

1.  Extended buyer contingency period. The standard contingency period of 17 days will be extended to 21 days. This offers more protection for the buyer, but may have the sellers biting their nails for 4 extra days. Nevertheless, it gives the lender more time to secure the loan and provides better peace of mind for all in that respect.

2.  Loan and appraisal contingencies will be separate. The current contract ties the two together, so that removal of one means removal of the other. The new RPA will separate these two contingencies, such that the buyer will still have an “out” if the home does not appraise or if the loan is denied, even if the other contingency had been removed. However, the seller is protected as well, in cases where buyers have waived or removed the appraisal contingency, as they cannot back out if the home does not appraise.

3.  Buyer direct deposit added to initial deposit field. There will now be a check box allowing the buyer to select to send their initial deposit to escrow via direct deposit.

4.  All cash offer added to first page. The “all cash offer” check box has been added under Finance Terms in section 3 on page one.

5.  Broker scope of duty. An entire paragraph has been added (section 18 B) that outlines the broker’s scope of duty in regards to the contract – what the broker is and is not liable for in relation to the contract. This provides more protection for brokers.

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It is important to take a class to understand all the changes to the RPA so that you are prepared and know the legal ramifications. Most local associations are offering free classes, so check with yours and sign up. As with all legal documents, changes usually offer further protection to the parties involved in signing them, so make sure you are able to best represent your clients and stay educated!

For a list of courses around the state click here.

For a list of online self-study courses click here.

 

 

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New Split-Level Upgraded View Listing in Carlsbad

September 12th, 2014

Welcome to 1432 Sapphire Drive…Offered at $779,000.

This superbly upgraded split level 5 bedroom home is both elegant and charming, with numerous custom finishes and beautiful mountain and canyon views. Newly upgraded kitchen with gorgeous granite counters, travertine tumbled tile backsplash and stainless steel appliances. New paint inside and out, and new carpeting throughout. Upgraded bathrooms, fantastic view yard, large patio area, fountain and raised organic gardening beds….all nestled in the gated hilltop community of Mar Brisa, just minutes from the ocean, shopping and dining. Low HOAs, no mello roos, community pool, spas, play and exercise lots – come live the Carlsbad lifestyle! For more photos and to view the virtual tour please click here to visit the property website. image_001_mls

Features:

• 5 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms, 2296 square feet of living space

• Bright and full of natural light

• Expansive mountain, canyon and golf course views from family room, living room, kitchen and yard

• Delightfully upgraded kitchen with stainless appliances, granite counters, travertine tile backsplash

image_006_mls• Master bathroom with plantation shutters, new tile flooring, new mirrors, fixtures

• Custom paint, marble sills on all windows (except those with shutters)

• Downstairs living room/den with fan, surround sound speakers

• Upstairs bathroom has new sink, toilet, mirror, and fixtures

• 5th permitted bedroom added downstairs

• 3 bedrooms downstairs, master and one bedroom upstairs image_005_mls

• Upgraded downstairs bathroom with marble counters, new sink/cabinet, new fixtures

• Large backyard patio, grassy areas and side yards, lovely fountain

• Gardener’s paradise includes passion fruit, orange/lime, pomegranate and apple trees, and raised organic gardening beds for your vegetable garden

• Generous under-house storage area

image_024_mls• Freshly painted exterior

• Lots of storage throughout

• Laundry room with large sink

• Two car garage with tuff tech flooring and storage

• Low HOAs, no mello roos

• Gated community with community pool, spas, play and exercise lots, RV lot

• Award winning Carlsbad Unified School District

This listing is posted courtesy of Broker Rachel LaMar, California BRE license number 01399682. Please call 760-310-9466 for further information or to schedule a showing.

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New Coastal Carlsbad Cul-de-Sac Listing!

September 8th, 2014

Just listed…6438 Opal Way, Carlsbad CA 92011. Enjoy the Carlsbad lifestyle just minutes from the beach! This beautiful Mar Brisa hilltop home is situated on a cul de sac with extended driveway, private yard and great curb appeal. Clean and bright with laminate wood and tile flooring and a fabulous kitchen image001_mlswith lots of counter and cabinet space. Formal dining room, cozy family room with fireplace, central air conditioning, new landscape and exterior paint, plus a wonderful backyard with firepit, and large grassy area. All this in a gated community with pool, spas, play areas, low HOAs and no mello roos! Offered at $769,000.

Features Include:

• 2275 square feet, 4 bedrooms, 2.5 bathrooms

• Filled with natural light image006_mls

• Cul de sac corner lot

• Custom paint

• Gated community

• New exterior paint

• Bright kitchen with Spanish tile flooring and center island, refrigerator included

• Formal dining room image020_mls

• Family room with fireplace

• Spacious master suite with large bathroom

• Upstairs laundry room, washer and dryer included

• Ocean peek-a-boo views from front facing bedrooms

• Cathedral ceilings in living room

• 3 car garage and extended driveway

image008_mls• Great backyard with pavers, big firepit seating area and large grassy side yard

• New landscape

• Low HOAs ($139/month) and no mello Roos

• Community pool, spas, tot lot, exercise lot

• Carlsbad School District

• MLS number 140049335

For more information please call Rachel LaMar, agent at 760-310-9466, or click here to visit the property website.  CA BRE Broker license number 01399682.

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San Diego Housing Market Update for September 2014

September 4th, 2014

What is happening with the housing market? That is a big question right now all across the country. Of course, it is not truly possible to give an answer that will cover all parts of the country. Let’s look at San Diego County and focus on some of the things that are affecting home sales. http://www.dreamstime.com/royalty-free-stock-photo-real-estate-home-values-going-up-image17256765

Prices are stabilizing. Prices soared across the county during the summer months. Now that summer is practically over most industry experts and commentators expect that prices will stop rising at such a quick rate and we will return to a more “normal” housing market. Many real estate agents, including myself, seem to agree. According to Zillow, San Diego home prices rose 9% in the last year and will continue to rise 3.8% in the next year.

Interest rates remain low. Rates are still very low, in fact they are the lowest in years (hovering around 4.1% this week on a 30 year fixed mortgage). Many factors contribute to this, including geopolitical instability, but the fact is that buyers can still take advantage of some great mortgage products. If inventory continues to increase this should stimulate sales.

Inventory is rising. Inventory this summer finally rose out of the doldrums. Currently San Diego County has close to a 4 month supply of inventory. As of mid-August, housing inventory had increased 14.3% since the same time last year, providing more choices to buyers.

Pending home sales show slight improvement. Pending home sales have been down year to year since 2012, but the decrease in July was smaller than the average over the last six months, indicating that pending sales may be on a slight increase, this according the the California Association of Realtors. Whether this trend will continue as we head into the holiday season is unknown, but there definitely are certain parts of the county where agents feel more homes are starting to go into escrow. Pending home sales are an indicator of future home sale activity.

Buyer’s market: coming soon? If rates continue to stay low and prices stabilize, the market will likely slowly shift to a buyers’ market. Some areas are seeing that effect already, and it seems pretty inevitable that we will move into that direction.

Of course there is no crystal ball for real estate, but all signs point to a market that is stabilizing and still in recovery. Indicators point to a more “normal” housing market moving forward, where sellers and buyers are on more equal footing.

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San Diego September 2014 Events Calendar

September 1st, 2014

Happy September to everyone! Have a wonderful month.

 

September 5 – 7, Annual Challenge Walk MS
The event is a 3-day, 50-mile walk from Carlsbad to downtown San Diego. Participants can experience a personal journey of spirit and physical stamina while benefiting the Multiple Sclerosis Society. Refer to website for registration information.
Time: 7:30 am
Location: Starting point: Carlsbad Flower Fields, 5704 Paseo Del Norte, Carlsbad
For more information visit www.mymschallenge.com
September 6, 50th Annual Poway Days Parade 
This event includes a 5k race, pancake breakfast, old-fashioned parade (along Poway Rd.), and Motorhead Madness event. There will be food, entertainment and fun for the whole family!
Time: 7:00 am – 1:00 am, Parade: 9:00 am
Location: Poway Community Park, Poway
For more information visit www.powayparade.org  
September 6, Grape Day Festival, Parade and 5K
This parade features equestrians, floats, marching bands, and walking groups. In celebration of its heritage, this festival will have grape stomping, free grapes, entertainment stage, vendor booths, fun zone, and a wine and craft beer tasting pavilion!
Time: 5k: 7:30 am, Parade: 9:30 am, Festival: 9:30 am – 4:00 pm
Location: Grape Day Park, 321 N. Broadway, Escondido
For more information visit www.escondidohistory.org
Powerboat Racing & Festival
Join the crowd at Mission Bay to watch the fastest boats in the world compete to win at this extreme watersport event. You’ll see sleek powerboats and hydroplanes race so fast that they nearly become airborne. See website for tickets and campsite fees.
Time: 6:00 am – 6:00 pm
Location: Mission Bay, 1404 Vacation Rd., San Diego
For more information visit www.sandiegobayfair.org
September 13, Santee Bluegrass Festival
This festival will feature wine and beer tasting, food sampling, a silent auction, and live Bluegrass music. Participants will receive a commemorative wine glass and designated drivers will receive an engraved water bottle. Refer to website for admission information.
Time: 5:30 pm – 9:30 pm
Location: Town Center Community Park East, 550 Park Center Dr., Santee
For more information visit www.ci.santee.ca.us
September 13, Fiestas Patrias – Mexican Independence Day 
Fiestas Patrias celebrates Mexican Independence with colorful displays of dancing, storytelling, and music. Enjoy lively free activities, including children’s games. Other activities include branding, corn husk doll making, relay races, and vaquero games.
Time: 12:00 pm – 4:00 pm
Location: Old Town San Diego - adjacent to the Old Town Transit Center
For more information visit www.oldtownsandiegoguide.com/events.html
September 13, Bonitafest
Bonitafest will feature vendor booths with food, crafts, and exhibitors. There will also be free style motocross with X-Game riders. The parade will feature horse groups, high school bands, antique cars, youth groups, service clubs, and military. This is a free event.
Time: 10:00 am – 4:00 pm
Location: Bonita Vista High School, 751 Otay Lakes Rd, Chula Vista
For more information visit www.facebook.com/Bonitafest
September 13 – 14, Annual Coronado Art Walk 2014
This is an open-air arts festival. Artists have been selected by a jury for their ability to express the vast and varied world of art in their particular art form. Painting, hand crafted jewelry, photography, ceramics and other mediums will be featured.
Time: 10:00 am – 5:00 pm
Location: Coronado Ferry Landing, 1201 1st St., Coronado
For more information visit www.coronadoartwalk.org
September 19, 20th Annual Festival of Beer 
This indoor/outdoor event will feature live music and nearly 60 different breweries serving up 120 varieties of beers. Inside will be food items and munchies for sale plus a selection of fine wines for purchase by the glass.
Time: 6:00 pm – 11:00 pm
Location: Port Pavilion on Broadway Pier, 1000 N. Harbor Dr., San Diego
For more information visit www.sdbeerfest.org
September 20, 45th Julian Music Festival 
Julian celebrates the end of summer with music and this year will be no disappointment! There will be a variety of music everyone will enjoy including bluegrass to western ballads.
Time: 1:00 pm – 8:00 pm
Location: Menghini Winery, 1150 Julian Orchards Rd., Julian
For more information visit www.julianmusicfestival.com
September 20, 30th Annual California Coastal Cleanup Day 
This event is a major part of an international coastline cleanup that includes all 50 states and over 100 countries worldwide. Refer to website for registration information.
Time: 9:00 am – 12:00 pm
Location: San Diego coastline beaches and bays
For more information visit www.cleanupday.org
September 20, Annual Mira Mesa Street Fair 2014
This event includes entertainment on two stages, a carnival, children’s crafts and games, free rock painting for kids, craft, vendor, and info booths, and a Scout village, showcasing camping skills and equipment.
Time: 10:00 am – 5:00 pm
Location: Camino Ruiz from Mira Mesa Blvd. to New Salem St.
September 21, 19th Annual Encinitas Oktoberfest 
There will be Bavarian dancers, a German-American band, a street craft faire with over 200 vendors, authentic German food and beer, and a ceremonial parade at noon. There will also be a family fun zone with children’s games, family oriented activities, and much more.
Time: 10:00 am – 5:00 pm
Location: 1690 Wandering Rd., Encinitas
For more information visit www.encinitaschamber.com
September 21 – 26, San Diego Restaurant Week
Over 180 participating restaurants will be offering three-course prix-fixe (a set meal at a fixed price) dinner and lunch menus. See website for a list of participating restaurants. No tickets or passes are necessary but reservations are recommended.
Time: Times vary
Location: Various San Diego Locations
For more information visit www.sandiegorestaurantweek.com
September 27, Tour de Fat Festival & Bicycle Parade
There will be a festival of colorful Brazilian dance performances, delicious cultural foods, New Belgium beer, arts and crafts, unusual bike contests, and a costumed bicycle parade. This event promotes the use of bicycles as a sustainable form of transportation. This is a free event.
Time: 11:00 am – 5:00 pm
Location: Golden Hill Community Park, 2600 Golf Course Dr., San Diego
For more information visit www.newbelgium.com
September 27, 25th Annual AIDS Walk/Run San Diego
This is the largest one-day HIV/AIDS fundraiser in San Diego where you can participate in a 5K walk or the USA Track and Field Certified 10K Run. This event also includes a health and wellness fair. Refer to website for registration information.
Time: Opening ceremonies start at 7:20 am
Location: Normal St. and University Ave., San Diego
For more information visit www.aidswalksd.org
September 27 – 28, 33rd Annual Adams Avenue Street Fair
This is a truly popular event where you can enjoy 7 stages with 90 musical performances. There will also be about 300 art, food, and craft vendors, plus carnival rides and a beer garden. This is a free event.
Time: Sat: 10:00 am – 10:00 pm, Sun: 10:00 am – 7:00 pm
Location: Adams Avenue - between 32nd St. and 35th St., Normal Heights
For more information visit www.adamsavenuebusiness.com 
September 27 – 28, Carlsbad’s Annual ArtSplash 
A free festival of arts for the entire family! This event will include chalk art street paintings, creation of art on-site, street performances, car show, food, fun, and much more. The funds raised will benefit North County schools.
Time: Sat: 10:00 am – 6:00 pm, Sun: 10:00 am – 5:00 pm
Location: Armada Dr., above the Flower Fields, Carlsbad
For more information visit www.carlsbadartsplash.org
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Real Estate Agents: What You Need to Know to Avoid Litigation

August 29th, 2014

Because we live in a litigious society, if you are a real estate agent or broker there is always the threat of litigation hanging over your head. Working on a daily basis with contract and legal consequences, we all need to keep vigilant to protect ourselves. If you are named in a lawsuit or go into arbitration proceedings, keep in mind that you may have to pay the full cost of your errors and omissions insurance deductible.dreamstime_5338072

Here are some ways to help you stay away from the arbitration table and out of the courtroom:

1.  Have your broker review all your contracts. Unfortunately this is not something that is done with every contract in every brokerage, but it should be. Many brokers review the contracts and related documentation towards the end of the sale. If there were any egregious errors or omissions it may be too late at that time. I have often wondered why the local boards who make the rules do not make it a requirement that a broker review every contract before it is sent out. I have seen more poorly written contracts than I can count, and one recently where the buyers’ agents actually designated me as the representative of their client! Needless to say, I make a lot of phone calls to brokers.

You may think you know how to write a contract and you may have many years of experience doing so, but if you are not a lawyer it is a benefit to you to have broker review every time – it could save your behind and your pocketbook.

2.  Do not draft any addenda without legal or broker advice, as the wording needs to be approved to avoid legal ramifications. Remember, only attorneys are allowed to draft contracts. Most agents freely draft addenda and amendments all the time, but this really needs to stop. There are ways to word changes in order to make sure that the intended result is properly defined and cannot be construed any other way. Many agents may disagree with me here, but we need broker review on any documents related to the contract, because it can be construed as practicing law.

3.  Never give legal advice to clients. Almost every agent knows that this is a big no-no, but as a lawyer I have personally heard countless agents say things to their clients that either is legal advice or is on the cusp of being classified as such. If a question involves anything about the contract other than general answers (such as expiration dates, how long a contingency period lasts or where to sign, for example), then advise your clients to seek the advice of an attorney.

4.  Read the contract and all related documentation before your clients sign anything, every time. You might think I am crazy, but I know for a fact that many agents either have never read the documents they have their clients sign, or do not read them often. I know this because I see mistakes all the time. I know it is boring (we lawyers write a lot of words to cover every point), but I promise you that this will benefit both you and your clients.

This comment is timely, as the California Association of Realtors is about to launch a new Residential Purchase Contract. Take the free classes that will be offered to learn about this new contract and how the changes will affect your clients and the way you fill out your contracts. The same goes for all locales and all paperwork. Your association likely always offers classes on learning the proper paperwork you’ll need as a real estate agent. If not, talk with your broker.

5.  Read through all paperwork after it has been signed to make sure you didn’t miss anything. I don’t think this needs explanation. Let’s just say that I am appalled by things that are left out in contracts all the time…things that likely would have been discovered by proof reading, and certainly by broker overview.

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The only way to avoid problems is to be vigilant, and doing so in real estate means understanding all forms, staying educated about changes and ramifications, never giving legal advice, and having all your paperwork reviewed by your broker. The hassle it may create will be nothing compared to being dragged into arbitration or court.

 

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What Buyers Should Do During their Contingency Period

August 25th, 2014

When buying a home most buyers have a contingency period, a standard 17 days under the California Residential Purchase Contract (RPA), but negotiable by contract for longer or shorter periods. This time is meant for the buyer to conduct investigations and inspections in order to discover information about the home that may affect ownership or present hazards. Buyers can then ask for credit or repairs, or choose whether to remain bound by the terms of the purchase contract if things are discovered that may alter the value of the home. (Check your area contracts and consult with your real estate agent to understand your rights)images

Let’s look at some of the types of inspections and investigations that are important during this time:

1. Home inspection. Most buyers have home inspections during the contingency period, and I always recommend them. If buyers hire a skilled inspector, he or she will be able to point out potential problems, issues or hazards that may not be obvious. I have sold homes before that looked to be in fantastic shape, only to learn of issues that needed to be addressed via home inspectors. Inspectors will not only point out possible issues or hazards, but will also recommend the buyers contact specific experts whose expertise goes beyond that of an inspector (for example, if the inspector detects high moisture readings in a room he may recommend a mold specialist).

2. Civil engineer inspection. A civil engineer is a necessary person to call out for certain types of homes, such as those built on cliffs, or where a cracked slab has been noted. If your inspector advises a call to an engineer, or if there is information in the seller disclosures that warrant doing so, I highly recommend taking the advice.

3. Roof inspection. Some home inspectors do not check the roof. Depending on the age of the roof, and any signs of leakage or information indicating such in the disclosures, a roof inspection may be a smart move.

4.  Contractor inspections/estimates.  If your home inspection reveals there may be repair issues needed to the structure, or if there is information in the seller disclosures that warrant, you may want to have a licensed contractor come out for an evaluation and estimate; if you are planning on any future additions or structural changes this is also a good idea, so that you are aware of any possible restrictions or code requirements (also see #6 below).

5. Other specialist inspections/estimates – plumbers, electricians, HVAC specialists, etc. A good home inspector will alert you if s/he thinks there is something that needs further evaluation. I highly recommend taking the advice and calling a specialist. If you are planning on asking the seller for help with repairs or replacement, you will know the cost of doing so, so that you can make sure you ask for the correct amount of credit or repairs.

6. Investigate permit issues. This is an issue of which many buyers and agents are unaware. If the home you are purchasing has had any alterations or additions in the past, you need to see if permits were pulled. Usually you can do this easily with a visit to the County or City offices, or wherever building codes are enforced and records are maintained.

If you know of any past alterations or additions that should have been permitted, but cannot find permits filed, you need to understand your liability down the road – and this can vary depending on local rules and regulations. For example, if there was an addition that wasn’t permitted and down the road you decide to apply for a permit to do some other additions or work, the inspector can site you for the previous additions when s/he comes out to inspect your current project. This means that you could be liable for getting any past unpermitted work up to code. This could cost you a lot of money, so make sure you know what you are up against before you buy.

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The importance of the contingency or investigatory period is great. Buyers should exercise discretion and listen to suggestions made by their home inspector and real estate agent on which experts may be needed, as well as pay close attention to what is revealed in seller disclosures. Paying a bit extra for peace of mind that you are buying a sound home (or knowing what issues may be present if you are purchasing a fixer-upper) is well worth it.

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Carlsbad is a Great Place for Yogis!

August 19th, 2014

There are so many things I love about Carlsbad – the beautiful beaches, the great shopping, terrific restaurants, the Village, the wonderful lagoons and their trails and water sports, and so much more. One thing you may not have known about Carlsbad is that is is home to numerous yoga studios. images

If you live in Carlsbad and want to join a yoga studio it used to be that you had to drive to Encinitas or elsewhere, or suffer through yoga classes at a gym (unless it has a separate yoga room this can be a loud, smelly experience with an instructor that often does not compare to those at a yoga studio).

In the last year or so there have been multiple studios that have opened up around town, giving people lots of choices. Here are the local yoga studios that will satisfy the yogi in you:

ReForm Yoga

2653 Gateway Rd., Carlsbad, CA 92009
Phone number (760) 602-0020
http://www.reformyoga.com
- This is my personal yoga studio and I love it. Great instructors, nice clean studio, flexible schedule. Located in fantastic Bressi Ranch town center. $39 for your first month, unlimited yoga. This is not a heated class studio, and temperatures are usually 80˚
* Dedicated yoga-only studio

Mantra Yoga (& juice bar)

5617 Paseo Del Norte, Carlsbad, CA 92008
Phone number (760) 655-3277
http://www.discovermantra.com/
-I’ve heard wonderful things about this studio. Great location across from the Carlsbad Outlets. They have a cupon on their site for $10 for 10 classes for new students. Lots of hot classes, so if that’s your thing you will like it there.
* Dedicated yoga-only studio

Yoga80

6120 Paseo Del Norte
Carlsbad, CA 92011
Phone number (760) 931-1223
http://yoga80.com/schedule/carlsbad/
- Nice schedule and great teachers. $19 for first 10 day trial, unlimited classes (new students only)
* Dedicated yoga-only studio

YogaLux

2712 Gateway Rd
Carlsbad, CA 92009
Phone number (855) 484-7348
http://fortisfast.com/
- This is not a dedicated yoga studio, but offers all kinds of classes – barre, boot camps, strength and conditioning and a gym. Check their site for new student specials.

images-1Floating Yogis

4509 Adams St.
Carlsbad, CA 92008
Phone: 760.525.8625

- This is a completely different but amazing way to practice yoga – out on paddle boards in the lagoon! I haven’t tried this yet but have heard rave reviews.

 

Yoga Six

1905 Calle Barcelona
Carlsbad, CA 92009
Phone number (760) 274-6332
http://yogasix.com/carlsbad
- Located in The Forum shopping center, offering two yoga rooms, and full locker room and shower facilities
*Dedicated yoga-only studio

Peace, Love and Yoga

2588 El Camino Real
Carlsbad, CA 92008
Phone number (877) 311-7744
http://www.peaceloveandyoga.com/
- New student special 10 classes for $10. Mostly heated classes.
- Dedicated yoga-only studio

Carlsbad Village Yoga and Fitness

2801 Roosevelt St
Carlsbad, CA 92008
Phone number (760) 893-9251
- Various membership options
*Not a yoga-only dedicated studio

Yoga Bound

3043 Harding St
Carlsbad, CA 92008
Phone number (760) 720-9642
http://yogaboundforlife.com/
- New student special $40 for first month, unlimited yoga
*Dedicated yoga-only studio

 

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Need a Loan to Buy That House? 10 Things to Avoid

August 14th, 2014

If you are a buyer looking for a home, or if you plan to do so soon, there are a few things you need to be aware of that could kill your chances of getting a loan. Although I am not a mortgage professional, because I work closely with them on a daily basis I felt it important to share some tips with those who are planning a future purchase and need to secure a loan. Many lenders pull credit and also ask for account statements again right before closing, so be careful.house_shoppingcart

Here are the most important things to avoid in order to secure a loan:

  1. Do not quit your job, change industries or start a new company (this alters your tax status and you will not be able to provide 2 years of steady employment history, as the clock starts ticking all over – I personally had this happen and had to wait 2 years to refinance)
  2. Do not cosign on a loan with anyone (you will be 100% responsible for it if the other person defaults)
  3. Do not switch from a salaried job to one with a commission.
  4. Do not transfer large sums of money between bank accounts.
  5. Do not forget to pay your bills, even if there are some in dispute
  6. Do not open new credit card accounts, even if it will save you money
  7. Do not accept a cash gift without filing the proper “gift” paperwork
  8. Do not make random, undocumented deposits into your bank accounts
  9. Do not purchase a new car or trade up to a pricier lease (in fact, it is advisable not to trade any lease until your loan has closed, even if it lowers your payments)
  10. Do not purchase any big ticket items like furniture or window treatments – you need to be patient and wait until you have closed escrow

The best advice when applying for a home loan is to avoid spending on anything that is unnecessary before and while the loan is being processed. Plan to eat at home and be frugal for the short period. Most importantly, speak with a mortgage professional, get preapproved  and make a plan so you can work closely with your real estate agent to stay within your boundaries. It will be well worth it in the end!

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New Carlsbad Listing with Over $130,000 in Upgrades

August 11th, 2014

Welcome to 1500 Sapphire Drive in Carlsbad, an impeccably maintained home with over $130,000 in remodeling and upgrades. Nestled within a gated hilltop community less than two miles from the ocean, this home has been lovingly cared for by the original owners. Come and see for yourself what the coastal good life is all about!image002_mls

Highlights Include:

•  Offered at $799,000
•  3 bedroom +loft/optional 4th bedroom, 2.5 bathroom home, 2284 square feet
•  View lot! Hills, golf course, canyon, and out to the mountains

•  Complete kitchen remodel several years ago includes stainless LG appliances, custom granite counters, beautiful custom cabinetry with slider shelving, travertine tiled backsplash and flooring, large eat-in island and under-cabinet lighting
image008_mls• Downstairs master suite complete with French doors to the backyard (with adjustable operable panels), stunning built-in entertainment center with shelving, ceiling fan, Plantation shutters, custom paint

• Gorgeous remodeled master bath with large sunken tub, travertine tiled dual head shower, Grohe fixtures, high-end Italian glass lighting fixtures, decorative windows, seated vanity

• Plantation shutters, crown molding throughout, thick baseboards downstairs

• Hardwood flooring downstairs and on the stairway

• Upstairs view balcony with French doors

• Large loft upstairs – possibilities are endless, or can be converted to 4th bedroom

• Tasteful low-maintenance backyard with plenty of room for seating, plus seating wall, outdoor kitchen (sink, refrigerator) and fountainsimage025_mls

• Spacious front patio and beautifully landscaped entrance

• Epoxy garage with built-in storage and large fire safe

• Air conditioning

•  Located in a hilltop gated community less than 2 miles from the ocean
•  Low HOAs, no mello-roos, community pool/spas and tot lots, Carlsbad schools

If you are looking for a pristine home that has been upgraded, extremely well-cared for and is truly in move-in condition, with views and coastal breezes, in a gated community, plus Carlsbad schools…this is it!

 Please contact me if you are interested in this property or would like further information! Rachel LaMar, Broker, LaMar Real Estate 760-310-9466. CA BRE license number 01399682 MLS #140044087

To see more photos, video and community information  click here.

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