Archive for June, 2012

It’s a Good Time to Buy!

Wednesday, June 20th, 2012

Are you still wavering on whether or not to buy a home? Here is some great information for you to is a great time to buy!



Infographic courtesy of California Association of Realtors

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Pre-Qualification vs. Preapproval: Do You Know the Difference?

Friday, June 15th, 2012

Do you know the difference between a pre-qualification and a preapproval for a mortgage? Surprisingly, many buyers – and even many agents – do not. It is important to understand the difference before you prepare to search for a property.

Pre-Qualification: When a buyer gets pre-qualified for a mortgage, it means that s/he has submitted information to the lender regarding employment/earnings and assets. The borrower discloses what amount s/he has for a downpayment, and provides the lender with a credit score. Not much digging is done to verify the information, and pre-qual letters are fairly easy to obtain.

Some lenders require proof of funds to be shown (which can be done by submitting a bank/securities statement), and pre-qualification letters state that a loan will be granted based on the borrower’s ability to satisfy the conditions – they are not a guaranty for a loan. These letters are the most common types presented with offers, as many banks can evaluate a borrower, but cannot truly evaluate whether s/he can purchase a particular property until they have a fully executed contract and related documents.

Preapproval: Getting preapproved means that a lender took the time to look at a potential buyer’s documentation of income and assets. Credit scores are pulled, and the buyer is examined more thoroughly. Borrowers must provide 1099’s, W2’s, account statements, employment stubs and other information if necessary. Once the preapproval is drafted it is still not a guaranty that the borrower will get a loan. There are other conditions that must be met, which will become more clear once a property is identified for purchase.

No matter which type of letter is obtained, it is important to obtain one before writing an offer so that the buyer looks strong in the presentation. Many listing agents will not respond to offers unless there is a preapproval or pre-qualification letter submitted simultaneously.

Interestingly, most listing agents do not scrutinize whether a borrower submits a preapproval or pre-qualification letter (and I have found that many do not even know the difference), but many do ask that proof of funds (funds necessary to cover any downpayment) be submitted with an offer and the letter. None of these things provide iron-clad proof that the buyer will qualify for the loan, but they do reassure the seller and listing agent that the potential buyer at least looks positive on paper.

It is important in today’s market – where we are seeing many properties obtaining multiple offers – to look as strong as possible. Taking the extra time at the start to obtain a preapproval is a smart decision that could mean the difference between getting your offer accepted over that of another buyer.

If you are considering purchasing a home, it is important to consult with a mortgage professional right away, so that you can figure out for how much of a loan you will qualify. This will allow you and your real estate agent to focus on properties in the right price range, providing a better chance that you will be able to successfully qualify for a loan when you find the right home.


Images courtesy of Dreamstime

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Where is All the “For Sale” Inventory?

Tuesday, June 12th, 2012

There is a strange phenomenon occurring in San Diego this Spring season – there are less homes for sale than anticipated. It is not uncommon for buyers to find themselves in multiple offer situations, being outbid and outshone by others, including cash investors. Will we see more inventory as we head into summer, and what is keeping sellers from selling? Let’s take a look at some of the possibilities.

1. Negative Equity Rising. According to an article in the Wall Street Journal, economists believe that as negative equity rises, people are less likely to list their homes because more foreclosures become a possibility, meaning property values go down. If sellers cannot get more for their homes, they will be unable to have the money needed for downpayments to purchase new homes, and to pay all the fees associated with selling. Thus, many are waiting for the market to go up before selling. Some of those who have to sell end up short selling their homes, which does not help neighborhood market values.

2. Fear. Many people are still afraid that the economy has not healed, and that the housing market has still not hit the “bottom.” To this I reiterate how important it is to focus on your own specific housing market, not the national reports. For instance, here in San Diego many communities are currently “seller’s markets” (for the first time in a long time) when it comes to condos, townhomes and attached homes. Multiple offer situations are common, and prices are rising. Many buyers are frustrated – they are making offers and are qualified for loans, but they are outbid. So, it is important to speak with a knowledgeable area agent to understand your specific market.

3. Election? Being an election year, many people feel that there will be changes within the economy and housing market if a new administration is elected, and those changes create fear and uncertainty. Some sellers choose to wait and see the results, so they can try to analyze where the market may go from that point. Again, it is imperative to really understand your local market, and not simply wait to see what might happen in the future. If you are in a market that has risen, and there is great demand there, you may be in the driver’s seat as a seller.

4. Investors in the market. There are many investors out there snatching up properties, especially those in the under-$300,000 price range. A large percentage of these investors pay cash, and their offers outshine those from buyers who need to get a loan, as they are easier to close. It is not uncommon to see buyers being outbid by these investors, and there is a lot of frustration amongst many buyers today. The only thing a buyer can do is be as well qualified as possible, and appeal to the sellers via a handwritten letter, making the sale feel more personal. This won’t always help, but I have my buyers write them, as it makes things more personal.

Most importantly, buyers and sellers need to understand the following: if somehow we knew that the market was going to improve from here on out, that improvement will be gradual – not a crazy spike like in the early 2000’s. Annual price increases of several percentage points a year will be likely. Sellers need to figure out the difference in waiting to make a few thousand dollars, compared to paying the mortgage, insurance, taxes and maintenance over that period of time. Buyers need to consider that when the market starts to correct, it is likely that interest rates will rise as well – so they could potentially be hit with higher prices and rates. There are buyers out there ready and waiting for homes to be listed, so speak with a qualified agent about your options if you are thinking of selling your home.


Photos courtesy of Dreamstime

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Gorgeous New Listing in Del Sur!

Friday, June 8th, 2012

I have a new listing in the wonderful community of Del Sur in San Diego, and this is one beautiful home! It is being offered at $535,000.

This 4 bedroom, 3 bathroom home offers 2000 square feet, plus a fabulous entry entertainment/den with fireplace, that has been enclosed with windows (it was built as an indoor/outdoor room).

Filled with light, this home has numerous upgrades and features, including green features like solar panels and a tankless water heater.


Other features include:

• Granite counters

• Stainless steel appliances, 6 burner stove, range hood and upgraded cabinetry

• Wide plank hardwood flooring downstairs and in master

• Custom paint and designer carpeting

• Two fireplaces, upgraded fixtures and fans

• Downstairs room and full bath

• Quaint landscaped yard and patio area off living room

• Upstairs laundry room with sink

Del Sur is a master planned community situated just a few miles inland from Del Mar, and bordering Rancho Santa Fe. Surrounded by hills and miles of trails, Del Sur has so much to offer., including multiple pools and parks/tot lots, a gorgeous “Ranch House” community clubhouse, and prestigious Poway schools.


This home has been impeccably maintained and is in move-in condition. It is being sold as a short sale.

Please contact me to schedule a showing, or visit the open house this Sunday from 1:00-4:00. 760-310-9466.

MLS number 120029250. For virtual tour visit


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CA Real Estate Market News: Great Time for Sellers!

Tuesday, June 5th, 2012

If you are a buyer in California, especially in the San Diego area, you likely have noticed that many properties are going quickly once they are listed, oftentimes with multiple offers. It is a great time to buy, and and also can be a terrific time to sell if you have an experienced real estate agent on your side. Check out this interesting infographic from the California Association of Realtors:



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June Calendar of Events for San Diego

Friday, June 1st, 2012

June 1 – 3
29th Annual Temecula Valley Balloon & Wine Festival
Food, wine tasting, musical entertainment, kids’ fair, arts & crafts, commercial booths and hot air balloons.  The Temecula Valley Balloon and Wine Festival has become a celebration of life with flavor and appeal for everyone.
Time: Fri 3:00 pm-10:00 pm, Sat 6:00 am-10:00 pm, & Sun 6:00 am-5:00 pm
Location: Lake Skinner, 37701 Warren Rd, Temecula
For more information visit

June 2
Arthritis Walk
Join the Arthritis Foundation for a national walking event to help combat arthritis. Walking moves the muscles and lubricates the joints for more flexibility.
Time: 7:00 am – 1:00 pm
Location: NTC Promenade at Liberty Station, 2335 Cushing Rd, San Diego
For more information visit

June 2
Art Around Adams 2012
2 mile art and music walk. This family-friendly event will showcase an array of local artists, musicians, outrageous street performers, and interactive installations.
Time: 2:00 pm – 10:00 pm
Location: Adams Ave, Normal Heights & Kensington
For more information visit

June 2 – 3
Wings over Gillespie
The air show will feature many famous legendary aircrafts. Also on hand will be USN/USMC helicopters, other static displays, and much more. A special KidsZone area, amusements, rides, entertainers, games and prizes, face painters, education displays, and a great variety of food and beverages.
Time: 9:00 am – 4:00 pm
Location: Gillespie Field, 1960 Joe Crosson Road, San Diego
For more information visit

June 2-3, June 9-10, and June 16
Camp Pendleton World Famous Mud Run
The Mud Run’s challenging hills, tire obstacles, river crossings, two muddy 5-foot walls, tunnel crawl, and final 30-foot mud pit ensures the most fun you can have running a 10K! Race individually, military or civilian, within your age division, or as a member of a 5-person team.
Time: Race starts at 9:00 am
Location: Lake O’Neill Recreation area, Camp Pendleton
For more information visit

June 3
San Diego Rock n’ Roll Marathon & Half Marathon
Athletes from the world over will participate in one of the nation’s premier marathons. Local bands on 26 stages and cheerleading groups will entertain the athletes as they travel along a scenic course through the city of San Diego in either the Marathon or Half Marathon. There will be a Finish Line Festival with music, food & beverages.
Time: 6:00 am – 4:00 pm
Location: Balboa Park, San Diego
For more information visit

June 5
Golf with a Hero
The Oceanside Chamber will hold its 12th Annual Military & Commercial Golf Outing. A portion of this year’s proceeds will benefit the Veteran’s Association of North County.
Time: 1:00 pm – 5:00 pm
Location: Marine Memorial Golf Course, Camp Pendleton
For more information visit

June 8 – July 4
San Diego County Fair
Flower and garden shows, exhibits, art, gems & minerals, carnival rides, food booths, midway, and concerts. This year’s theme will be “Out of this World.” We’ll be exploring outer space!
Time: Closed Mondays except July 4th, see website for more details
Location: Del Mar Fairgrounds, 2260 Jimmy Durante Blvd, Del Mar
For more information visit

June 9
5th Annual Carlsbad Beach Fest 2012
A mile-long free, fun filled celebration featuring competitive sporting events, free beach activities, live music and entertainment on multiple stages, food, a beach cleanup, and interactive booths.
Time: 8:00 am – 4:00 pm
Location: Carlsbad State Beaches, Frazee Beach at Pine to Tamarack Beach
For more information visit

June 9
Rock, Blues & BBQ Festival
Classic Rock n’ Blues Festival presented by the City of San Marcos. Food will be sold at an onsite barbecue with partial proceeds donated to Angel’s Depot. Bring beach chairs or blankets for lawn seating.
Time: 12:00 pm – 8:00 pm
Location: Walnut Grove Park, 1950 Sycamore Dr, San Marcos
For more information visit

June 9 – 10
Taste of Gaslamp
Your ticket is your passport to come down to the Gaslamp Quarter and sample menu specialties from more than 30 locations per day. This event also features a special beer tasting garden, sponsored by the Samuel Adams family of fine beers.
Time: 1:00 pm – 4:00 pm
Location: NE corner of 6th Ave & K St at 660 K Street, Gaslamp Quarter
For more information visit

June 14
San Diego Inland Business Expo
This expo will showcase a variety of businesses, giving attendees an opportunity to find business services and products appropriate for their needs. Exhibitors and attendees have the chance to enter opportunity drawings, as well as sample tastings from local eateries.
Time: 3:00 pm – 7:00 pm
Location: Chrome Collision, 13175 Gregg St, Poway
For more information visit

June 16
11th Annual Pet Fest & Doggie Dash
The 1 mile doggie dash helps raise money for local animal organizations, Chula Vista Animal Care Facility, and the Chula Vista Nature Center. There will also be pet-related vendors, demonstrations from the Chula Vista K-9 unit, puppy training specialists entertain and educate, pet contests, pet adoptions, spay and neutering services.
Time: 8:00 am
Location: Memorial Park Bowl, 373 Park Way, Chula Vista
For more information visit

June 16
Philip Rivers 5K Walk & Fun Run
This 5K walk travels along the bayside around the perimeter of the park at Liberty Station. Post-event festivities include music, snacks, and a Kids Zone. Proceeds from the event benefits the Rivers of Hope Foundation, which supports San Diego adoptions and foster care services.
Time: 7:00 am – 1:00 pm
Location: Liberty Station, NTC Park near Cushing Rd, San Diego
For more information visit

June 16
14th Annual Old House Fair
A festival for anyone who is thinking about restoring an older home. Here you will meet local craftspeople and community businesses that specialize in restoring, repairing, and preserving the unique qualities of older homes. The event also offers historic home tours, exhibits, food, music, and activities.
Time: 10:00 am – 4:00 pm
Location: 30th Street (between Cedar & Ash) and Beech Street (between Fern & Date), South Park
For more information visit

June 22 – 24
San Diego International Beer Festival
The Del Mar Fairgrounds hosts the 6th Annual San Diego International Beer Festival during the San Diego County Fair. Approximately 150 local breweries and over 350 beers from around the world will be participating in this Beer Fest.
Time: See website for details
Location: Chevrolet Del Mar Arena, 2260 Jimmy Durante Blvd, Del Mar
For more information visit

June 23
Ocean Beach Street Fair & Chili Cook-off
A beach festival with an amateur chili cook-off contest.  Highlights include live entertainment, an Artist Alley, vendor booths, beachside beer garden, kiddie area and more.  Free event.
Time:  10:00 am – 8:00 pm
Location:  Along Newport Avenue (4800-5000 Block & surrounding areas)
For more information visit

June 23-24
La Jolla Festival of the Arts
The La Jolla Festival of the Arts is among the top rated art shows in California, featuring talented artists from the USA and Mexico.  Art, music, street chalk art, fun stuff & food.
Time:  Sat. 10:00 am – 6:0 pm / Sun. 10:00 am – 5:00 pm
Location:  UC San Diego Warren Field East Campus – La Jolla
For more information visit

June 25 – August 27
25th Annual Summer International Organ Festival
Spreckels Organ Society presents the 25th Anniversary
Summer International Organ Festival, featuring internationally celebrated organists playing free concerts under the stars.
Time: Monday Evenings 7:30 pm – 9:30 pm
Location: Spreckels Organ Pavilion, 1549 El Prado, San Diego
For more information visit
Calendar courtesy of Lawyer’s Title
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