Archive for February, 2014

San Diego March 2014 Calendar

Friday, February 28th, 2014
Ongoing (Tuesdays), Tasty Truck Tuesday Gatherings
Tasty Truck Tuesday is a popular weekly gathering that occurs every Tuesday evening. Enjoy various offerings from many different food trucks.
Time: 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm
Location: 3441 Adams Ave., Normal Heights
March 1, 66th Annual Ocean Beach Kite Festival
A fun day of festivities which includes a street fair, crafts, food and entertainment along with kite making, decorating, demonstrations, and even a kite flying contest. There will also be a craft fair and carnival. This is a free event.
Time: 10:00 am – 4:00 pm
Location: Dusty Rhodes Park, 2500 Sunset Cliffs Blvd., Ocean Beach
March 4, 20th Annual Mardi Gras Gaslamp Quarter 2014
Masked revelry in the streets! There will be entertainment on multiple stages, a masquerade parade, International DJ talent, themed areas, and beads, beads, beads! Eat, drink, and enjoy. Refer to website for admission information.
Time: 5:00 pm – Midnight
Location: Gaslamp Quarter, Downtown San Diego
March 8, Spring Forward MusicFest
A family fun festival with activities that include several workshops, live music, great food, a hot dog eating contest, BBQ vendors, dancing, kids zone, inflatables, and a ton of fun!
Time: 9:00 am – 6:00 pm
Location: Grape Day Park, 321 N Broadway, Escondido
March 8, Colon Cancer Alliance Undy 5000 5K Run/Walk
This is a timed 5K run/walk to raise awareness about colorectal cancer and cancer screening. In an effort to do this, participants are encouraged to wear undies over their running attire. Yep, you heard right, dress appropriately and be as creative as you want! Refer to website for registration information.
Time: 8:00 am – 9:30 am
Location: Mission Bay Park, 2750 N Mission Bay Dr., San Diego
March 9th, Daylight Savings Time Begins
Daylight Savings Time 2014 begins at 2:00 am on Sunday March 9th. Remember to turn your clocks forward 1 hour. Or turn them forward on Saturday night before you go to bed.
March 9th, Change Your Smoke Alarm Batteries
As you change your clock for daylight savings, remember to change your smoke alarm batteries!
This is one of the simplest and most effective things you can do to protect yourself and your family!
March 9, San Diego Half Marathon Gaslamp Block Party
This is a fantastic block party that celebrates San Diego. The festivities are at the finish line for the San Diego Half Marathon. Mix and mingle, browse the vendor booths, listen to music, or hang out at the belly bars. There will also be a family fun zone with jumps, rock wall, and slides. Refer to website for registration information.
Time: 7:30 am – 1:00 pm
Location: Gaslamp Quarter, 5th Ave from Island Ave to L St., San Diego
March 15, ShamROCK 2014
The 19th Annual outdoor musical block party celebrating St. Patrick’s Day on the green streets of Historic Gaslamp Quarter is in full swing this year. This event features live entertainment, DJ’s, Irish food, green beer, Jameson Irish Whiskey, and much more! All proceeds benefit the Gaslamp Quarter Historical Foundation. Refer to website for admission information.
Time: 4:00 pm – Midnight
Location: Gaslamp Quarter, San Diego
March 15, 34th Annual St. Patrick’s Day Festival & Parade
Wear something green when you enjoy the festivities in a celtic village filled with Irish culture, music, dancing, merchandise, food, and beer; plus a kid’s zone with rides and activities.
Time: Festival: 9:00 am – 6:00 pm, Parade: 10:00 am
Location: Balboa Park, San Diego
March 16, 3rd Annual North County St. Patrick’s Day Parade & Festival
Once a year everyone can be Irish!  Join in the fun for the only North County family friendly St. Patrick’s Day celebration. This festival is complete with a parade representing all North County cities, awards, street fair, vendors, live music, and children’s activities.
Time: 10:00 am – 4:00 pm, Parade: 11:00 am
Location: Main St., Downtown Vista
March 22, 10th Annual San Diego Race for Autism & Resource Fair
Race donations support San Diego programs and classrooms that benefit thousands of local children with autism. This run features a 5K chip-timed run, a 5K walk, 1-mile family fun run, an educational resource fair, children’s activities, awards ceremony, music, and much more. The Race for Autism Resource Fair runs in conjunction with the Race. Refer to website for registration information.
Time: 7:00 am – 11:00 pm
Location: Balboa Park, 6th Ave. and Laurel St., San Diego
March 22, South Park Spring Walkabout
Browse, shop, and explore the charming neighborhood of South Park. This is a fun-filled evening festival where the shops are open late, plus entertainment, specials and surprises.
Time: 6:00 pm – 10:00 pm
Location: South Park neighborhood, 30th and Fern Streets, San Diego
March 23, Hot Chocolate 5K & 15K
America’s sweetest race! This is a 5K and 15K road race that begins at Petco Park, winds downtown, through Golden Hill, North Park, and back to Petco Park. Participants can choose their course, run off a few pounds, then put them back on again by attending the post-race party with music, hot cocoa, and treats dipped in chocolate fondue. Refer to website for registration information.
Time: 6:00 am – 11:30 am
Location: Petco Park, 100 Park Blvd., San Diego
March 29 – 30, Seaport Village Spring Busker Festival
This is the only Busker Festival in all of Southern California. Professionals from across the country will perform their bizarre talents from sword swallowing to knife throwing to pogo stick tricks and juggling on unicycles. There will even be escape artists and comedic stuntmen. Shop, dine and enjoy an entire day of one-of-a-kind entertainment. This is a free event.
Time: 12:00 pm – 6:00 pm
Location: Seaport Village, San Diego
March 30, 18th Annual Rolando Street Fair
A free event where residents of Rolando can meet their neighbors at this block party that promotes community unity. Enjoy live music, kid’s corner with rides and activities, a food court, and more than 100 vendor booths.
Time: 10:00 am – 6:00 pm
Location: One Rolando Blvd., between El Cajon Blvd. and Solita Ave., Rolando Village
March 30, Paws in the Park 2014
Join the fun as this event celebrates the bond between people and their pets. Help to raise funds and awareness for animals in need. Proceeds benefit the Escondido Humane Society. There will be fun contests, entertainment, shopping, giveaways, games for people and pets, an opportunity drawing and more!
Time: 8:00 am – 12:00 pm
Location: Kit Carson Park, 3333 Bear Valley Pkwy., Escondido
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North San Diego Home Sales Slow in January

Monday, February 24th, 2014

January was a slow month for North San Diego home sales, but that is quite typical for the time of year.  Here is the sales chart, courtesy of the San Diego Union Tribune:


In North coastal San Diego Oceanside (all 4 zip codes) saw the highest number of sales, followed by Carlsbad (all 4 zip codes), and then Carmel Valley. Solana Beach came in with the lowest number of homes sold with 9 total.

There are several reasons why the beginning of the year tends to be slower than other months – the holidays have just finished and many buyers put aside searching for homes  to be with family, the start of the year tends to showcase lower inventory levels, as many sellers wait until Spring/Summer to list their properties; the weather can be colder which tends to have an effect on some buyers (although here in San Diego we have had a warm winter).

All in all we still had a decent number of closings in North Coastal San Diego, with a total of 409 closings (single family detached, attached, and new construction  combined), with a combined median sales prices of $581,000. Inland areas saw a combined median price of $420,000 and there were 550 total sales.

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“Spoofing” is a Scary Trend Amongst Teens

Saturday, February 22nd, 2014

I just wrote the following article in the Carlsbad Patch, and thought it important to share it with readers of my blog as well, especially if you are a parent. Please share the following information with any parents you know:

Spoofing is a new form of identity assumption that is growing in popularity with many teens, and it can have criminal consequences. If you are a parent and you have not heard of spoofing, please read on. Spoofing enables someone, via downloading an app, to enter someone else’s phone number and name into the app, so that when that person makes a call it looks like the person whose identity has been assumed is the one who is calling.

Apparently this is happening more frequently and the possible consequences are nothing short of alarming. I had a crash course in spoofing because this is happening to my daughter and her friend. The caller ID shows the girls’ numbers, and the caller is identifying herself as the girl whose number she assumed (for example, Jane Doe’s number and name pop up when the phone rings, but Jane Doe is not the one making the call and it is not coming from her number).

If you or your child is the victim of spoofing, you need to do two things. First, you need to report it to the local police. They cannot really do anything specific other than take a report, but at least it will be documented in case something should happen and your child is accused of doing something s/he did not do.

Next, you need to call your cell phone carrier. They have ways to find out who is doing the spoofing, via a subpoena of the phone records. Once the number is found from where the calls originated I am not sure how the carrier proceeds, but I will write a follow up blog once I know.

The most important lesson to learn from this new scary identity assumption tactic is to speak with your children about it. Let them know that this is a crime, and that if it happens to them they need to let you know immediately. Many kids may think this is just something fun, but they need to know there can be consequences and that this can be considered criminal.

I will be speaking with the Carlsbad Unified School District next week to try and implement a program that gets this information out to all middle school and high school aged children. I will also be speaking with local officials so that we can educate the general public about this growing problem.

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New California Law That Will Affect Investor-Owners, Renters

Wednesday, February 19th, 2014

California’s new law, AB 1513, will make it a felony to unlawfully possess the property of another, including refusal to leave another’s property after being requested to do so. This law should make it easier for landlords to evict tenants – after proper notification of course – and will also keep tenants on their toes when served with a notice of eviction.dreamstime_5338072

The legal term for failure to vacate the premises is unlawful detainer. The language of the new law states the following:

160.5 A person who does either of the following is guilty of a felony punishable pursuant to subdivision (b) of Section 1170 of the Penal Code:

(a) Knowingly holds and occupies any residential property, owned or managed by another, by force or threats of violence.

(b) Knowingly enters residential property without the property owner’s express written permission and refuses or fails to leave the residential property after being requested to leave by the property owner or agent of the owner.

For more information on the bill you can click here. To learn more about the eviction process in California click here. Most importantly, if you are a tenant facing the possibility of an unlawful detainer action, I highly advise you to seek the advice of an attorney as early as possible.

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Wonderful New Oceanside Listing

Thursday, February 13th, 2014

This new listing at 4700 Ventana Way is located on a corner lot in the wonderful Rancho del Oro neighborhood. It boasts 1881 square feet, with 4 bedrooms and 2.5 bathrooms and is listed for $450,000.

The living space is filled with natural light and new flooring throughout – warm honey colored laminate flooring is found in the living/dining room areas, the stairs, and all the bedrooms and hallways upstairs. The kitchen, family room and all bathrooms have beautiful neutral tiled flooring.

3_mlsThe backyard has been recently landscaped with a sprinkler system and grass, and offers privacy and a nice amount of space for a garden, play area or whatever your heart desires.

This home has a central alarm system, mini blinds throughout, and a comfortable flooplan. The master bedroom has peeks of the hills and a walk in closet. The laundry room is conveniently located upstairs and there is a spacious loft with built-in desk area upstairs as well.5_mls

4700 Ventana Way is centrally located close to highways, shopping, dining, entertainment, public transportation, trails, and only moments to the beach.

This home will be open on Sunday, February 16, from 1:00-4:00. Stop by and have a look, or call Broker Rachel LaMar for more information at 760-310-9466.

MLS# 140008125. Listed by LaMar Real Estate, CA BRE 01399682.

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Why Should You Use a Real Estate Agent?

Tuesday, February 11th, 2014


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Home Buyers Beware…What You Need to Know When Purchasing

Friday, February 7th, 2014

There is no doubt that home buyers are very savvy these days, but despite full seller disclosures and a clean home inspection there is always a chance that the home could have hidden issues that could cost lots of money down the road. Luckily there are steps that can be taken to avoid some big disasters.disclosure

State Law Protection: Every state is different, but focusing on California it should comfort buyers to know that our state is extremely pro-buyer. While the notion of caveat emptor does play out to an extent, there are laws in place that require the seller to disclose information about the home and it’s history. If you have ever sold or purchased a home, you are likely aware of the detailed disclosures that sellers need to fill out. Questions range from whether the seller has any knowledge of damage from floods, fires, plumbing, electricity, appliances and other issues, to whether there have been pets on the property and whether there is an active Homeowners Association governing the property.

These disclosures apply to only what the seller knows/is aware of (for example, if a prior owner disclosed something to them they are deemed to have knowledge of that issue), and what the seller reasonably should have known (if there was a water stain on a ceiling and the seller painted over it and did not disclose it, he will be deemed to have had knowledge of a potential leak, since a reasonable person would have realized such). Sellers should disclose everything, or can be subject to fraud and negligence.house_disrepair

Home Inspection: Getting a home inspection is probably the most important part of the purchase process. If there are any hidden issues that are not disclosed by/known to the sellers, the only way to find those is to have a home inspection. I ALWAYS tell my buyers to have an inspection. But the caveat here is to make sure the inspector is a good one…there are lots of inspectors out there. It is a good idea to ask your agent – we work with many inspectors and most agents know who is good at what they do and who is not. My favorite inspector is a also a licensed contractor and a civil engineer.

Further Inspection: It is  important to keep in mind that a home inspector does a thorough inspection of the home, but usually not deeper inspections. For example, if the home is on a slope or cliff the inspector will likely recommend further inspection by a civil engineer to check for soil erosion and stability of the structure. If the roof is older he may recommend a roofer (note that many inspectors don’t even go on the roof); if a room smells musty and the inspector gets high moisture readings he will likely recommend a mold inspection.

If your inspector recommends further evaluation by an expert YOU NEED TO ADHERE TO THIS ADVICE. If you do not, and if you have issues down the road, you may be out of luck and need to spend money from your pocket to remedy the issue. It is well worth paying an extra few hundred dollars for peace of mind. There is enough case law where buyers tried to go after sellers for such issues but had no cause of action because they did not pursue further inspections on issues that were disclosed or uncovered in the home inspection (and oftentimes the issues were small). It’s better to be safe than sorry.

The lesson to be learned here is that all buyers should get a home inspection from a very good inspector, AND if the inspector notes anything that is a problem or might become one, they should follow through and have an expert out to investigate further. If problems are discovered the buyer will be able to negotiate with the seller to remedy the situation, or can choose to cancel the contract if within their inspection/contingency period (which is usually 17 days in California, unless contracted otherwise).

Speak with your agent and make sure you take precautions so that you do not have any surprises down the road after escrow has closed.

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What’s Happening in Carlsbad?

Wednesday, February 5th, 2014

There has been a lot going on in Carlsbad lately! Here are some of the things to check out.

photo(24)Alga Norte Park: If you have not yet visited the beautiful new Alga Norte Park, you are definitely missing out! The grand opening was held in January, and the park is already a hit. There is something for everyone at the park: play areas, a gorgeous swim complex, fields for baseball/softball, soccer, basketball courts, a fabulous skate park, and my favorite – a wonderful dog park! The dog park is definitely a hit with my dogs, and it’s terrific seeing neighbors and people from the area who can finally now congregate at a local dog park!

The dog park is very large, with lots of space for your fur people to run and play. There is obstacle course equipment and clean wood chips covering the ground, and there is a separate area for dogs under 35 pounds who may feel intimidated running with the big dogs.

New Eateries: The much-anticipated opening of the new center at 965 Palomar Airport Road (in the Costco shopping center parking lot) took place at the end of January. Both Veggie Grill and The Burger Lounge opened to big crowds. Personally I was thrilled to have a Veggie Grill so close to home (and I eat there all the time already!), and my family loves Burger Lounge. Also in the center is the area’s newest Starbucks and Nothing Bundt Cakes – a delicious desert place with multiple kinds of bundt cakes, both big and small (and they always have samples out). It’s great to have some fun new places in the area for lunch and dinner.

Trail Cleaning Event: If you are looking for something to do to help beautify Carlsbadimages, bring the whole family on February 8 to the El Fuerte Trail in Bressi Ranch, from 8:30-11:30. Instructions will be provided by city members, after which volunteers will help to clean and repair erosion damage. The city will provide tools, water, gloves and snacks. The trail is located on El Fuerte just north of Poinsettia Lane. For more information call 760-434-2978.

Carlsbad Teen Scene: It’s that time of year again! Teen Scene will be held February 22 from 4-9 PM at Calavera Hills Community Center. This is an exciting teen event, and there are always talented musicians on hand. Tickets are $8 at the door, and you can save $3 by buying them before February 21. Call 760-602-7510 for more information and to purchase tickets, or go to the city website.


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San Diego Calendar for February 2014

Saturday, February 1st, 2014

Happy February everyone…enjoy!

Ongoing (Wednesdays), Eastlake Food Truck Gathering
Cheesy sandwiches, sausages, fried loveliness, seafood, BBQ, decadent desserts and more await your pocketbooks and taste buds. Bring your own chair, table and/or picnic blanket if you can’t hang with perching on the curb while you grub.
Time: Wednesdays, 5:30 pm – 8:30 pm
Location: Eastlake Design District, 871 Showroom Place, Chula Vista
February 1, The Great Urban Race– San Diego
Great Urban Race is a fun and challenging puzzle where your city holds the pieces. Teams solve clues, tackle challenges and race for cash prizes in this all-out test of smarts and speed!
Time: All day event
Location: Downtown San Diego – refer to website for specifics
February 1-28, Museum Month: Half-Off Admission
Leap into over 40 museums in San Diego this February. This popular event allows participants to enjoy half-off entry fees at 40 San Diego Museum Council membership museums for the entire month of February.
Time: Museum hours vary
Location: Various locations

February 2, San Diego Maritime Museum – Family Day
Enjoy a great day with your family exploring ships and stay for free craft activities on the upper deck of the Berkeley. Kids 12 & under get FREE admission all day, 2 children per paying adult. For an additional $5.00 per person, families can sign up for a historic bay cruise on San Diego Bay aboard the museum’s historic 1914 harbor pilot boat Pilot.
Time: 9:00 am to 8:00 pm
Location: 1492 North Harbor Drive, San Diego, 92101

February 7-8, Video Game Tournaments hosts tournaments “of some of the biggest videos games out there” at Microsoft Store Fashion Valley Mall. Sign ups start at 5:00 pm, tournament starts at 6:00 pm. All tournaments are free to enter.
Time: 5:00 pm – 9:00 pm
Location: Fashion Valley Mall, 7007 Friars Road
February 8 & 9, The 32nd Annual 2014 San Diego Chinese
New Year Food and Cultural Fair
Festivities in downtown San Diego include Asian cuisine, martial arts, cooking demonstrations, cultural exhibits and traditional Lion and Dragon dances. This is a FREE, family friendly event! Come celebrate our 32nd year of hosting the fair and our 42nd year of providing social services to the San Diego community.
Time: Both days 9:00 am – 5:00 pm
Location: Downtown, San Diego, Third Ave and J Street
February 8, Prevention 5K, 10K 1/2 Marathon Mermaid Run
Kick up your heels and enjoy a scenic run along Mission Bay. The flat course is ideal for both runners and walkers. Come out and experience the joy of crossing the finish line. Don’t forget to bring out your mini mermaid for our girls 1.5 mini mermaid run! The mini mermaid is for girls ages 6 to 12.
Time: Tentative start times – refer to website
Location: Mission Bay Park, Tecolote Shores
February 9, The Amazing Acro-Cats
The Amazing Acro-Cats delight and astound audiences of all ages as they perform their remarkable feats of agility, pushing carts, riding skateboards, rolling barrels, ringing bells, turning on lights, walking tight ropes, jumping through hoops, and much more!
Time: 3:00 pm
Location: Victory Theater, 2558 Imperial Avenue
February 10, Stone Game Night
Grab some friends or make new ones while playing king-sized games including chess, checkers, Jenga, Connect 4, pick-up sticks, lawn bowling, and more. For guests 21 and older.
Time: 5:00 pm – 10:00 pm (Ongoing Monday nights)
Location: Stone Brewing Liberty Station,
2816 Historic Decatur Road #116, San Diego
February 14, The Dinner Detective Murder Mystery Show
on Valentine’s Day
The Dinner Detective® is America’s largest murder mystery comedy dinner show! You’ll solve a hilarious murder case while you enjoy a fantastic four-course plated dinner. A tantalizing prize package awaits our top sleuth of the evening.
Time: 7:15 pm
Location: Hilton Del Mar, 15575 Jimmy Durante Blvd, Del Mar
February 16, 4th Annual Coronado Valentine’s Day
10K & 1 Mile Fun Run
In it’s 4th year, the event has earned a great reputation for its attention to detail, race management, and an awesome post race party.  Each participant receives a high quality tech tee, a finisher’s medal, and local discounts throughout Coronado. Whether you are looking for a new 10K Personal Record (PR) and some prize money ($3,000 prize purse!) or you just want a great flat course through beautiful Coronado…  this course is for you.
Time: Refer to website for race schedule
Location: Tideland’s Park, Coronado
February 22, San Diego Winter Brew Fest
The San Diego Winter Brew Fest will celebrate craft beverages from around California and beyond and features; live local music, food, and other vendors. This event benefits Outdoor Outreach and the San Diego Mountain Bike Association (SDMBA).
Time: General admission 7:00 pm -10:00 pm. VIP 6:00 pm -7:00 pm.
Location: The San Diego Hall of Champions in Balboa Park
February 22, 5K Paw Walk
Rancho Coastal Humane Society and San Diego Botanic Garden are teaming up for the first-ever “5K Paw Walk in the Garden”! You are invited, with our without your pooch, to be there when dogs are allowed to walk through the Garden for the first and only time in history, but chances are this could be an annual event!
Time: 9:00 am
Location: San Diego Botanic Garden (former Quail Botanical Gardens),
230 Quail Gardens Dr., 
February 22, Ugandan Orphans Choir
The Ugandan Orphans Choir brings a message of hope by sharing their African folklore through music and dance. They are the fortunate few who have been rescued from poverty and are now a voice for children who are still waiting to be sponsored. Free event.
Time: 7:00 pm
Location: Worldbeat Cultural Center, 2100 Park Boulevard
February 27, Cruizin’ the Art Scene
Every fourth Thursday of the month the art galleries will host an art walk, featuring local artists. Stroll the beautiful garden of the Carlsbad Village Faire shopping mall, enjoy the live music and visit the art galleries for new art shows and demos. Live music, hors d’oeuvre and wine.
Time: 5:30 pm to 8:30 pm
Location: Carlsbad Oceanside Art League’s COAL Gallery,300 Carlsbad Village Drive #101
February 28, Foodie Friday at La Jolla Playhouse
Theatergoers with a love for beer and delicious eats are invited to attend
Foodie Fridays, where a ticket to select Playhouse performances also includes access to some of San Diego’s finest food trucks, plus a complimentary microbrew tasting.  Two great food trucks scheduled to be on site are
Green Truck and Red Oven.
Time: 6:00 – 8:00 pm
Location: La Jolla Playhouse, 2910 La Jolla Village Drive
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