Archive for July, 2013
Wednesday, July 31st, 2013
Happy August everyone!
2nd Annual Steel Beach Party & Beer Brew Fest
Groove to the sounds of Island Fever’s steel drum band, and then dance the night away to the cool beach sounds of Woodie & The Longboards. Enjoy lots of amazing food and take home a commemorative beer tasting cup! Refer to website for admission information.
Time: 6:00 pm – 9:30 pm
Location: 910 Harbor Dr., San Diego
August 2 – 4
Latin American Festival/Mata Ortiz Pottery Market
This event serves up one of the nation’s most extensive collections of authentic Mexican folk art, traditional clothing and textiles, colorful collectibles and dazzling jewelry, in addition to nonstop musical entertainment and authentic Mexican cuisine. Bazaar del Mundo’s parking lot will be transformed into a vibrant marketplace ensconced beneath a colorful array of shading umbrellas.
This is a free event.
Time: Refer to website for specific times
Location: 4133 Taylor St., San Diego
August 9 – 11
Julian StarFest 2013
This is a four-day festival focused around the field of astronomy. Julian is known for its clear dark skies and one of the best locations in Southern California for observing. The festival includes a free public Star Party on Saturday night, astronomy related exhibition areas, guest speakers presenting on astronomy related subjects, a swap meet and a raffle with some great astronomy prizes.
Refer to website for admission information.
Time: Refer to website for specific times
Location: Menghini Winery, 1150 Julian Orchards Dr., Julian
August 10 – 11
Philippine Cultural Arts Festival
The two day family-oriented, alcohol-free cultural event showcases traditional folk dances of the Philippines, folk songs, Rondalla String Ensemble and Kulintang music of Southern Philippines. The second half of both days features mainstream entertainment by youthful Filipino-Americans, including a singing talent show, hip-hop, jazz dances, and other variety numbers by Asian and Pacific Islander guest artists. Vendor booths feature photo exhibits, Philippine crafts, Filipino food, and more. This is a free event.
Time: 11:00 am – 5:00 pm
Location: Balboa Park, corner of Presidents Way & Park Blvd.
Annual Hillcrest CityFest Street Fair 2013
CityFest 2013 is going to be a spectacular feast for the senses! With over 250 arts, crafts, and food vendors, a grand stage, and a beer garden, there is sure to be something for everyone to enjoy. CityFest boasts a one-of-a-kind magical atmosphere; the intersection under the Hillcrest sign is going to be closed off and will enclose a Grand Stage and a lush Spirit’s Garden.
Time: 12:00 pm – 10:00 pm
Location: 5th Ave. and University Ave., Hillcrest
The San Diego Beer Run
A 5K and 10K run along the bay benefiting Access Youth Academy.
For athletes of all levels. Post-race festivities include food vendors and beer
from Stone Brewery and other local breweries. Check-in and day-of registration begin at 6:30 a.m. All runners over the age of 21 will receive a drink voucher
for one beer.
Time: 7:30 am – 11:30 am
Location: Ruocco Park, 585 Harbor Ln., San Diego
August 16 – 18
Summergrass San Diego Bluegrass Festival 2013
This premier Southern California bluegrass festival, put on by the San Diego Bluegrass Society and the San Diego North County Bluegrass & Folk Club, boasts a weekend of live bluegrass music from national, international, regional and local bands, music workshops, impromptu jam sessions, vendors, raffle prizes, kid’s activities, food and much more.
Time: Refer to website for specific times
Location: Antique Gas & Steam Engine Museum (AGSEM), 2040 N. Santa Fe Ave., Vista
Weezer – Del Mar Four O’Clock Fridays
Following the last race – Weezer! Concerts are standing room only are free
with paid racetrack admission ($6 for Stretch Run and $10 for Clubhouse).
For concert-only access following the last race, admission is $20.
The first race is at 4pm with the last race scheduled for approximately 7:30pm.
Time: 7:00 pm
Location: Del Mar Fairgrounds, 2260 Jimmy Durante Blvd., Del Mar
TwainFest in Old Town
This is a free family-friendly festival that celebrates the writing of Mark Twain and his contemporaries. This will be TwainFest’s fourth annual celebration of mid-19th century American arts and culture. TwainFest will present stories, music, professional actors and musicians, puppets, poems, inventive games and delightful performances plus a brand new feature called “History on the Move”
presented by Wells Fargo Bank.
Time: 11:00 am – 5:00 pm
Location: Old Town San Diego State Historic Park, 2754 Calhoun St., San Diego
San Diego Bark for Life
A noncompetitive walk event for dogs and their owners to raise funds and awareness for the American Cancer Society. Walk followed by demonstrations, contests, and games.
Time: 10:00 am – 1:00 pm
Location: Kate Sessions Park, 5115 Soledad Rd., San Diego
August 24 – 25
ArtWalk San Diego
ArtWalk San Diego features visual artists as well as some of San Diego’s top music and dance performances. Attendees have the opportunity not only to purchase original fine artwork, but also the opportunity to meet the artists and learn about their work and their inspiration. This is a free event.
Time: 10:00 am – 6:00 pm
Location: Ingram Plaza NTC Liberty Station, 2640 Historic Decatur Rd., San Diego
Bike the Bay
The sixth annual noncompetitive 25-mile community bike ride for all levels of riders passes through the cities of San Diego, Coronado, Imperial Beach, Chula Vista and National City and ends with a festive celebration with food, entertainment, and a New Belgium beer garden.
Time: Sunday, August 25, 6:30 a.m. to noon
Location: Embarcadero Marina Park South, 206 Marina Park Way, San Diego
Festival of Sail – Tall Ship Parade
Join the celebration as part of the flotilla of ships that sails into San Diego Bay to kick off Festival of Sail 2013! Sail aboard the official tall ship of California, the Californian, as she leads the parade of ships down San Diego Bay and to their docking spaces at the Maritime Museum. Refer to website for admission information.
Time: 8:30 am – 1:00 pm
Location: 1492 N Harbor Dr., San Diego
August 30 – 31
US Sand Sculpting Challenge and 3D Art Exposition
Hundreds of thousands have gone to this event each year to see master-class sculptors build beautiful 3-dimensional works of art. Now many of the world’s finest artists will come to create the most amazing sculptures ever. This is a
four day extravaganza for the whole family!There will be entertainment
all weekend long.
Time: 9:00 am – 7:00 pm
Location: B Street Cruise Ship Terminal Pier, 1140 North Harbor Dr., San Diego
Monday, July 29th, 2013
Monday, July 22nd, 2013
Many sellers have been questioning whether it is the ultimate time to list, since it has officially become a “seller’s market” in most California areas, including here in North San Diego. Some were able to take advantage of the crazy multiple-offer situations and buyers’ willingness to pay over appraisal value – situations that were seen often in many areas. According to many new reports and predictions those sellers may have jumped into the market at the right time…the rest of you, well, you may not be so lucky.
There are several factors that have been noted which could have an impact on housing prices going forward:
Rising interest rates. While many in the industry saw it as inevitable, it is now official that rates are rising. We have seen the average 30 year fixed rate rise a whole percent in a short period of time with some products, from 3.5 to 4.5%. While historically speaking this is still very low, many buyers are re-thinking plans to purchase, as higher rates mean affordability drops. Those who have been awaiting short sale confirmation from lenders are also in a similar boat – they are watching their monthly payments go up, unable to lock in their rates until the lenders approve their sales (and we know how ridiculously long that process can take – don’t get me started here on short sale lenders).
As rates continue to rise we will undoubtedly see some buyers changing plans to purchase, or changing ideal purchase scenarios (i.e. buying smaller homes instead). We will also see sellers changing tactics – some may decide to withhold from placing their properties on the market, while others may become nervous and quickly list their properties before the rates jump even higher…this could lead to an inventory increase, which also will effect the market.
Inventory growth. As everyone in the industry knows, inventory has been scarce in recent years; the bidding wars and drastic price gains are testament to this fact. But what happens if inventory finally starts to grow? First off, we will see a big leveling off in pricing – I think the days of outbidding and paying cash over appraisal value will be over. Market times will increase and buyers will have many more choices, should they decide to purchase despite higher interest rates ( and I think they will, as rates will likely climb higher with time, thus people will want to buy before they are priced out of the markets).
Stabilization of the housing market will be a good thing, and should be looked at as such. More inventory and higher rates will lead to a “normal” market, one that experiences a slow but steady growth over time, and keeps us out of bubble land.
These factors will NOT lead to a halt in housing recovery, but rather will sustain it. The skyrocketing prices have to end at some point, and prolonging them will only hurt the market. Sellers will still see gains on sales, but I think it will be more controlled and slow. What we are seeing is just another example of the government control of the housing market…and although it may seem frustrating to some, it will be positive for the market.
Thursday, July 18th, 2013
This property is really a treat – it is a beautiful, updated and move-in ready Carlsbad townhome on the lagoon, with views out to the ocean. The sunsets are breathtaking, and the location excellent – close to the beach, the mall, Carlsbad Village, the highway, Coaster/train station, shopping and dining. This is a must-see! Open Sunday from 1:00-4:00. 2399 Jefferson Street, #10, Carlsbad.
• 2 bedroom, 2.5 bath, 1544 square feet
• Panoramic lagoon and ocean views!
• Wood and tile flooring
• Stainless appliances
• Vaulted ceilings, fans
• Kitchen lighting and cabinet upgrades
• Additional window added to main living area to enhance views
• Retextured ceilings
• Fresh custom paint
• Washer, dryer and refrigerator included
• Large master bedroom with patio, walk in closet
• Upstairs view deck off main living area, and view patio off master
• Tons of storage
• Underground parking garage with elevator
• Complex pool and spa
• Exterior has been recently painted with new trim, new deck railings, painted front
door, new stair railings
• Close to beach, Carlsbad Village dining and shopping, train, mall, 5 freeway
Priced at $459,000. Please call or email for further information. MLS #130037818. 760-310-9466.
Tuesday, July 16th, 2013
Friday, July 12th, 2013
With most home sales the buyers do not move into their new home until escrow closes. However, there are times where situations make it difficult for the buyers to wait out the closing, and both parties agree to allow the buyers to move in prior to closing, via an Interim Occupancy Agreement. These agreements are tricky and can be fraught with legalities, so if you are considering becoming party to one, make sure you understand how they work and what could happen if things don’t go according to plans.
An interim occupancy agreement allows the buyers of a home to move into the home as tenants during the escrow period, before title has transferred into their name. The parties to the contract agree to a daily rate, and usually the buyers will pay for utilities and maintenance during this interim period. It can be a blessing for some buyers, who may have nowhere else to live until their home closes, especially when the home is vacant. It can also be great for sellers who do not live at the property, as their home will be maintained during the remainder of the escrow period.
Most lawyers, myself included the majority of the time, will advise against interim occupancy agreements. Here are some things to consider when determining whether such an agreement will work for you as a buyer or seller:
1. Escrow Problems. One has to really take into consideration the status of the escrow before agreeing to such a scenario. As a seller, it is important to note that if there are any problems with escrow and it ends up NOT closing, you will now have tenants in your home that need to be evicted. Evictions can be difficult if there are any issues, and there could be damage/wear and tear to the home. Interim occupancy agreements have specific language that address many issues, but the fact of the matter is that the seller may have to deal with these and other problems if things do not go smoothly.
2. Injuries on the property. Another thing to consider as a seller is what could happen if someone is injured or even killed on the property during the time the buyers are tenants. Again, most agreements have language that relieves the sellers of liability in such cases, but in today’s litigious society it is something to think about when deciding whether to enter into such a contract.
3. Unforseen issues. Another point to consider is what happens if the buyers (after moving in prior to the close of escrow) claim there are issues with the property about which they were unaware, and then ask for a price reduction, credit, or to renegotiate with the sellers. Again, many agreements have language addressing such issues, but if it were to happen it could put the seller in a difficult situation, where s/he is forced to either negotiate or have to deal with eviction and a possible sticky set of circumstances.
Sellers are not the only ones who have to be careful in the case of interim occupancy agreements. Buyers are also taking a big risk moving into a home that is not yet theirs. If something does go wrong and escrow is unable to close, the buyers will have to incur double moving expenses to get out of the home, and may even have to move several times before they are able to purchase another home.
Although it is important to approach these agreements with caution, there ARE situations where I believe they can actually hold value for all parties involved. One of these situations is where the buyers’ loan has been fully approved and docs have been signed, and everyone is simply waiting to record. Oftentimes there could be a weekend in between signing and recording, and in such a situation I see no harm is allowing the buyers to move in early. There are other times when such agreements may benefit both parties more than the risk involved, so it is important to weigh your specific circumstances, speak with your agent, and consult with an attorney before making a decision to sign such an agreement.
Monday, July 8th, 2013
One of the biggest questions in real estate right now is whether the market will continue to see rising prices. Many areas, including San Diego county, have seen price spikes over the last 6 months or so, anywhere from 10% to over 20%, depending on the neighborhood. We know that one of the main reasons for this is the lack of inventory combined with the time of year and low interest rates…but what will happen if those rates go up and as we head into Fall and Winter?
Inventory: Inventory will continue to play a big part in the market recovery, as well as help determine whether prices will continue to rise and the response thereto. It is a unique time right now because it is summer – the time when many buyers think of purchasing, and sellers think of selling. The demand is still very high in North San Diego, and I have agents calling me long after I close listings, asking if I have any others coming up in the neighborhood – AND if I have listings coming up in other places, so there are still buyers out there looking, with little to choose from.
There are several schools of thought as to what will happen to inventory levels moving forward, and how this might effect the market. As I always say, this will be determined by the specific market area, but as long as inventory remains low and there is a demand for properties I do not suspect we will see a drastic slow down in price increases; however I do think that as we coast through the remainder of the summer we will likely start to notice a leveling off, due to the factors below.
Interest Rates. If you have looked at the news lately you have seen that interest rates have risen in the last month, several times, and are expected to continue to do so. Some people fear that it will be the end of the housing recovery if they do in fact rise substantially, but as long as there is demand – and there still seems to be a great deal of it in San Diego – I do not think we will see a big drop in sales despite rising rates…after all, if you look at the rates from a historical perspective slight rises will still be considered low interest rates!
Interest rate effect on new inventory. One interesting thing to ponder is what effect rising interest rates will have on would-be sellers: those who have been thinking of selling but have been waiting (most for prices to continue to rise, many who are underwater and are waiting for the break-even point so they can get out from under there hefty mortgages). If we continue to see a spike in interest rates it is possible we may see a surge of inventory hit the market, created by a fear that buyers will no longer choose to purchase should the rates spike. This could be positive news for local markets, as the supply would be welcomed and met by the demand.
Another idea to consider is that those who have been searching for homes, getting outbid and frustrated with not finding homes, may decide to sit back should rates rise; the more probable scenario is that these buyers will want to jump into a purchase even quicker, and may step up their searches and even increase their range and criteria, in order to get into a home before the rates go up even more. It will be interesting to see the effect this has on the market, but I do not think it will be negative, at least not right away.
Distressed inventory. Over the years distressed and bank owned inventory has had an effect on home prices, playing a big role in gains. However, these sales have decreased in the last year, with REO (bank owned) sales decreasing by more than half. Radar Logic reports that from February of last year to April this year, REO sales declined from 26 percent of all home sales to 11 percent. This causes prices to increase more quickly than normal. If we see a return of these types of properties it could have an effect on prices, but I do not believe such would cause prices to go down, rather I think we would see a slower gain period moving forward.
Call it what you will, but a rise in interest rates could be a boost to local markets, at least those that have been climbing out of the doldrums of the crash and appear to be healthy and competitive. If you are thinking of buying or selling, this could just be the perfect time to do so, especially if you are now able to get out of an underwater loan and break even. Remember, after the market crashed many kept waiting for prices to “hit the bottom;” some people waited too long and missed out on purchasing property at the lowest levels. I do not believe prices will drop in San Diego, but rather I forsee a stabilization, combined with a “normal” annual rate of growth moving forward starting in 2014.
If you are interested in a detailed market analysis of your or other San Diego neighborhoods, please let me know.
Tuesday, July 2nd, 2013