First Time Buyer help

Buying Your First Home in California: How to Dig up Down Payment Funds

Posted on October 22, 2019. Filed under: Conventional Loan, FHA loans, First Time Buyer help, Foreclosure Assistance, Homeownership, Lenders & Loan info, Loan Advisor, Long Beach Homes, Los Angeles property, Los Angeles Real Estate, OC Home Fair, Orange County Real Estate, Real Estate Stories | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , |

Angie & Hyepin Im, FACE FounderToday we’re spending a Saturday in Pomona at FACE LA’s Homebuying Fair – we met them through NAWRB and LOVE what these organizations stand for. FACE has compiled quite a few programs to help you with down payment funds, and have relationships with LOTS of generous banks who can help with lower interest rates, buy downs, silent seconds, and more. Sharing is caring…so read below to find some free down payment funds to get your family into a home!

Tip 1: Find a lender familiar with the Community Reinvestment Act, and align yourself with a housing non-profit like FACE.

 

There are literally programs EVERYWHERE. And they change on the regular. Don’t spend your precious time researching outdated internet options when you can meet someone face to face who will help you with free homeownership coaching and what’s available right now.

 

As of Oct 2019, when we’re writing this post, we wanted to include some snippets on current programs that could help you close the gap to your down payment goal.

 

Tip 2: Explore Down Payment Programs & properly prepare to buy a home with education

 

In LA for example there are LIPA & MIPA . The LIPA or low income purchase assistance program offers 90K in down payment funds. The MIPA or moderate income purchase assistance program offers 60K, which goes a long way even in Los Angeles.

 

Businesspeople Giving High Five In OfficeThese purchase programs (and many others) have some caveats. The home must be your primary residence, and you must pass a homebuyer education class (approx 8 hours). Did you know taking homebuyer education classes before you buy make you 30% less likely to go into foreclosure? This is why many city, bank, and state programs will require you take one before receiving funds. Everyone wants you to succeed in your homeownership venture, so there are milestones like this in place to set you up to win.

 

If you don’t like the CITY of Los Angeles traffic, maybe the County of LA’s 75K down payment program would be a better fit for you.  This program offers a second Trust Deed loan provided at 0% interest with all payments deferred until sale, transfer, refinancing, no longer owner-occupied, or full repayment of the first mortgage. HOP (Home Ownership Program) loans are available to first-time homebuyers in the unincorporated areas of Los Angeles County and cities participating in the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) Urban County Program.

 

Maybe Los Angeles isn’t your thing at all….no worries!! CALHFA works all across the state of California for low and moderate income first time homebuyers. They finance almost everything when it comes to costs…down payment AND closing costs. You can literally close with $300 out of pocket. Yup. Read again. We’ve seen it. In OC!!!! Their requirements include 660 credit, owner occupied, and a homebuyer education class. The price cap is currently 765K.

 

The homebuyer fair today was in City of Pomona, and Pomona offers a fabulous down payment program (MAP) up to 100K! This city has some adorable craftsman homes that could use your TLC. Pomona basically does a silent second for 100K, there is no interest or payments owed by you. It does need to be paid back upon the following circumstances: sale of the home, refinance, occupancy change, or 15 years.

 

The City of Pomona loan will take a little share of your equity; if you borrowed 10% for this loan, then you need to pay back 10% of your equity upon sale to the city. This is totally fair since they gave you the same percentage to help start you out! Details include no ownership in the last 3 years, homebuying education class (by HUD), income cap requirements, and working with a lender who participates in the program.

 

 

Tip 3: Use OPM (Other People’s Money) to Help with your Down Payment

 

Here’s a video with Cain Rivera’s down payment success story testimony.  He was the youngest ever to receive a down payment from the city of LA program. Cain went from paying $1500/mo rent to UNDER $1000/mo mortgage owning his own condo in Balboa Park, and he didn’t have to leave LA to do it:

 

Tip 4: Layer your SoCal Down Payment Program benefits with bank programs too:

It was great to see so many banks offering programs to first time buyers. Here’s just a few of the programs our banking panelists talked about. If you’d like to get more info, sometime’s it’s easiest to just call FACE or check out an upcoming Home Fair – like OC Home Fair every January.

  • Bank of America currently offers a 10K grant offering in low to moderate income communities, PLUS a 7500 closing cost credit that applies to the entire country, check into it! In many states 7500 would cover the majority of your closing costs! 🙂
  • Wells Fargo has a lift program that gives 25K.
  • Boston Private has a 1% down conventional first time buyer program without mortgage insurance (when layered w other programs) that considers the entire scenario. If you’re self employed.. this is a great bank to call.
  • IMG_7409Union Bank has a 3K down payment assistance grant for closing costs or down payment assistance, which can be layered with other programs. Sorry couldn’t find the link for this exact program, but here are the low down offerings!
  • HSBC offers 7K toward closing costs for first time home buyers, and also 1/2 off your interest rate! Their credit requirement is only 620 so they are good if your credit is bad.
  • US Bank has 95-97% loan to value offerings & non-traditional credit consideration. They have a Mortgage Insurance program where they pick it up on your behalf. If you want just a lot, ask about their land program! You may also qualify for the American Dream program.
  • Bank of Hope has an in house underwriting Dept with a quick turnaround. They also waive mortgage application fees if you have an account with them.
  • Loan Depot – prides themselves on being very familiar with DAP – down payment assistance programs. They like to layer, and they can take credit as low as a 520 score.

 

These are just a few offerings and programs that are available in communities here in Southern California. Programs work if you are 20-70 years old – it’s never too late or early to consider homeownership!

 

One negative is these programs sometimes take major negotiating to get a seller to accept your offer, because they take 2x as long as a traditional escrow. You NEED a Realtor to represent you and keep the seller calm and informed.

 

Also, by the time you come across this post some of these programs may be expired, and new ones available. If you’d like us to hold your hand through the journey we’d be honored, just call or text Angie at 949-338-7408. As a 19 year old first time buyer who put only 3K down, I understand EXACTLY where you are at, and have a heart and the resources to help 🙂
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Homeownership Day 2020 – Register Today!

Posted on October 21, 2019. Filed under: First Time Buyer help, Home Improvement Ideas, Home Seller Tips, Homeownership, OC Home Fair, Orange County Real Estate |

Looking to buy or sell a home or investment property? Homeownership Day has a class for you!

Our annual Homeownership Day & OC Home Fair is coming soon! We are hosting at Chapman University for the 8th year in a row on Saturday, January 18, 2020.

The Southern California Home Fair is an event open to the community designed to provide home owners, home buyers, renters, and seasoned investors with free, personalized and comprehensive information from some of the leading experts in real estate.

OC Home Fair is for Everybody!

Attendees have a variety of choices from many classes offered throughout 3 sessions Image result for money homescovering a variety of topics! Some of the topics include:hassle-free home buying, investing to be an automatic millionaire, buying a home under your business umbrella, and much more.

Twelve classes are available this year, spread out over three sessions – pick from four during each time slot! When you register online at OC Home Fair you are able to choose which class you want to be in during each time slot. Some of the highlighted classes this year include:

  • Investing to be an Automatic Millionaire
  • What to Expect With New Home Builds
  • Buying with Cryptocurrency – What You Need to Know
  • How Veterans Buy with Zero Down

Click here to register to attend this year’s OC Home Fair, held Saturday, January 18, 2020!

Check back here for updates as the event approaches!
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Sustainable & Strong Housing – Meet Sol-Nest

Posted on October 12, 2019. Filed under: Accessory Dwelling Units, ADUs, AirBnB, Building, Construction, First Time Buyer help, Homeownership, Informed Investor Alliance, International Properties, Making Life Easier | Tags: , , , |

Sol-Nest: Building for Humanity

Sol-Nest is “building for the right reasons” and changing the building industry while they do it! Sol-Nest strives to ensure families have a sustainable and affordable roof over their head. Sol-Nest provides people with shelter regardless of where they’re located. It is their mission to reverse the housing attrition trend by “creating resilience and lowering the threshold of affordability.”

Sol-Nest recognizes that fires, floods, hurricanes, earthquakes and tornadoes destroy thousands of homes every year. Your home is an investment, to some it is your greatest asset – the last thing you want to worry about is a natural disaster destroying your home. But how can you minimize the risk of natural disasters destroying your home without packing up and moving?

The Disaster Proof Housing Solution? Sol-Nest

Sol-Nest understands the economic effects that these events cause, thats why Sol-Nest developed a patent pending proprietary building technology that is less expensive than your typical building methods. The new building technology can be used in distressed areas to provide affordable housing, built to last longer than traditional homes. Sol-Nest, LLC homes are built to survive earthquakes, fire, floods and 250 MPH winds.

Hybrid I- Post and Panel System

The patent pending process under Sol-Nest, LLC is called HIPPS™. HIPPS stands for Hybrid I- Post and Panel System.

What Makes Sol-Nest, LLC/HIPPs homes sustainable and strong:

  • The use of indigenous materials 
  • The use of Basalt Filament Rebar
  • Stands up to an ever changing climate
  • The method of laying concrete 
  • Quick assembly: little as eight weeks
  • Designed to be implemented in large-scale housing projects
  • Lower cost of building
  • Ability to utilize solar power to build homes “off the grid”

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If you’re thinking of building anywhere in the world, make sure you build strong. For more information, visit: https://sol-nest.com/

Interested in investing in this sustainable building technology? There’s opportunities in Puerto Rico and other gorgeous areas across the world.

Contact Garry Spain.

Phone Number: 310-625-6622

Email: intercorpresources@yahoo.com

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Considering Bankruptcy? Learn How Declaring Bankruptcy Affects Your Home

Posted on September 22, 2019. Filed under: First Time Buyer help |

The Basics

If you’re feeling overwhelmed by debt and feel you can’t keep up with your mortgage payments, you aren’t alone. According to Debt.Org, the total U.S. consumer debt is reaching $13.51 trillion (this includes mortgages). Many homeowners feel the pressure to sell their home to help eliminate their debt. For many homeowners, bankruptcy is the last option however filing bankruptcy can help alleviate some of your debt and potentially allow you to start over financially.

Filing bankruptcy can help you gain a fresh start by liquidating assets to pay debt or by creating a repayment plan. While bankruptcy is not an easy-fix to eliminate debt, nor is it a decision to be taken lightly, bankruptcy might be the best way for you to get back on your feet while keeping your house. Declaring bankruptcy can affect your mortgage in various ways. It is important to consider the risks and benefits before you file bankruptcy. 

Bankruptcy Prevents Foreclosure

As debt accumulates, you might not be able to keep up with your mortgage payments as other debts are taking priority. Lenders may threaten foreclosure proceedings against you, putting your home at risk. Foreclosure allows a lender to take your home to settle the remaining balance of your mortgage. Filing bankruptcy can stop a foreclosure proceeding.

Once you declare bankruptcy, the court imposes as an automatic stay to all of your creditors. The automatic stay imposes a “freeze” preventing your creditors from taking legal action against you to collect debt during your bankruptcy term. As your home approaches the final stages of foreclosure, filing bankruptcy will prevent this process from continuing.

Chapter 7 vs Chapter 13

When filing bankruptcy for personal debt, you have the option to file Chapter 13 or Chapter 7. In a Chapter 13 bankruptcy, you keep your assets while working on a repayment plan (typically 3 to 5 years). Chapter 13 bankruptcy allows individuals with a regular income to develop a plan to repay their debts. In a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, the appointed bankruptcy trustee cancels many of your debts by selling (liquidating) some of your property to repay your credits.  If you have assets not protected by an exemption, the appointed trustee may sell the assets to repay the creditors. Click here to learn more about which bankruptcy chapter could be right for you. 

Reaffirming Mortgage Debt

If you feel you could pay your mortgage payments on time if your other debts were no longer piling up, the court may grant you the option to reaffirm your mortgage through bankruptcy. While in bankruptcy, the court may consider granting you the option to reaffirm your mortgage through the bankruptcy process. During the affirmation process, you can reach an agreement with the mortgage lender to continue making making mortgage payments on your home and the court then agrees not to include your mortgage in the bankruptcy proceedings. 

Here To Help

It is important to consider the benefits of Bankruptcy when bills start to get too far behind or when traumatic financial events occur. Filing bankruptcy gives you an opportunity to save your home while gaining a fresh start. The Law Offices of Kaufman and Kaufman help people file for bankruptcy relief under the Bankruptcy Code. Contact Leah Kaufman today with your Bankruptcy questions.

Leah Kaufman
Law Offices of Kaufman and Kaufman
Phone: 714-550-9205
info@kaufman-kaufman.com
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From Renter to Homeowner – How to Make the Leap

Posted on August 28, 2019. Filed under: First Time Buyer help, Homeownership, Los Angeles Real Estate, Orange County Real Estate, Real Estate Stories |

RENTER

Renting has its perks – short-term lease agreements, low upfront costs and the flexibility to move anywhere you want on a short notice.

However, it’s exciting to have a place you can actually call your own! You want the freedom to paint the walls the color you want, tackle a DIY kitchen project, or to be as loud as you want without worrying about neighbors stomping above you. Owning a home has so many great perks, read about some of the perks here. If you think you are ready to make the leap from renter to homeowner, here are a few things to consider first.

Breaking a Lease Early to Buy a Home

More and more renters are looking to break their leases and make the leap into homeownership. As you get closer to finding the home of your dreams, the fear settles in that you are “stuck” in a lease. Landlords are fairly accommodating when it comes to allowing tenants to break their lease and move out early.

Work with your real estate professional to assist you in this communication to your landlord. If you find that you are still stuck paying intimidating fees, your real estate professional can help you negotiate the terms of your lease and help you cover your early move-out expenses to make purchasing a home easier for you.

If you find a home you love a few months before your lease ends, don’t let the fear of breaking your lease scare you out of becoming a homeowner. You might spend more money on the house you want if you wait for a lease to expire.

The housing market is constantly changing. You don’t want to miss an opportunity to purchase the home of your dreams, at the price that fits your budget. It is better to get the best deal than it is to worry about abandoning an apartment, these fees can be minor when accessing the long-term costs of waiting.

I see it, I like it, I want it, I FIX It!

Becoming a homeowner means that every repair that you would typically request via email the Apartment Complex front desk – is now your personal responsibility. All repairs are now up to you to fix, and pay for. With each repairs comes additional expenses due to installation fees, maintenance fees, and other costs renters typically do not pay for. It is important to prepare for these unexpected repairs so that you are ready to take action (or hire the experts) when the basement floods or the furnace stops working mid-winter.

The best way to avoid becoming Mr. & Mrs. Fix It is to consult with your real estate agent DURING the home buying process to ensure all potential repairs are identified (short term and long term). A thorough inspection is necessary to help you identify those hidden repairs that you might not find as you complete a tour of the home. Work with your realtor to ensure you have a thorough home inspection completed, this will help you avoid purchasing a property that is a potential money pit.

Expenses To Budget

Homeownership comes with unexpected expenses and surprises. As you determine what you can afford, it it important to consider additional costs other than the mortgage payments and real estate taxes.

As a renter, your utility bills are typically lower as you occupy a smaller space. Make sure to budget for an increase in bills such as: electricity, trash, heating and cooling. Think long term, often times renter consider the costs of owning a home based on down payments, closing costs, and taxes. While considering short term costs are required, it benefits you to also prepare (and budget) for those long term costs. It’s important to be realistic about what you can afford, the more you prepare for these costs, the more success you will have as a homeowner.

Stay tuned for more blog posts that will assist you throughout the homeowner process.

 

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Women In Real Estate – The Future Is Female

Posted on August 14, 2019. Filed under: First Time Buyer help, Homeownership, Los Angeles Real Estate, Orange County Real Estate, Real Estate Stories |

Women In The Housing & Real Estate Ecosystem (NAWRB)

While attending the ‘Women in the Housing and Real Estate Ecosystem’ annual conference in LA last week, I had the pleasure of learning more about women in real estate and the power of connections. NAWRB is an advocate and leading voice for women as they focus on “advancing gender equality, raising the utilization of women-owned businesses and providing women the tools for economic security, stability and sanctuary.” You can learn more about the how NAWRB provides women with financial freedom here. For more information about the statistics provided from the conference and where women stand in real estate, you can click here.

Did You Know?

Women are DOMINATING the world (and the real estate market). Women control 65 percent of global spending and more than 80 percent of U.S. spending. Women make majority of household decisions when it comes to purchases, especially when it comes to home ownership. According to Forbes, self-made women are increasing at a greater rate than the number of billionaires overall. As more and more women are becoming successful entrepreneurs, the door opens for opportunity: homeownership! Women represent one of the fastest growing groups in the housing market and are interested in buying their own home – regardless of their marital status.

Single Ladies

Single women are the second-largest home-buying group behind married couples (where they are likely making the decision). In 2017, single women made up 17% of homebuyers. Women are delaying marriage (and proud of it!) and pursuing their dreams. Census Bureau data shows that women on average are entering into marriage at an average age of 27. Regardless of their marital status, women are buying homes. Women are earning college degrees at a higher rate when compared to men. This allows them access to achieve higher wages (despite the wage gap).

Tips for Female Homebuyers 

MONEY Money MONEY 

  1. Know what you can afford 
  2. Do your research to know how much you should save for a down-payment before you start house-hunting
    • A $30,000 down payment might seem very intimidating – break it down!! Save $10,000 a year for 3 years. That’s roughly $800 a month. Married? That is $400 a month for each individual. 
  3. APPLY for down payment assistance programs
    • Did you know there are 2400 down payment programs??!!? 
      • Click here to learn what buyer program you qualify for – based on the state you live in
    • Down payment assistance programs delay the process of closing the deal, make sure you have an agent who can smooth that over with the seller and still get your offer accepted in a timely manner. 
  4. Make sure your a house payment fits into your budget!
    • Have an emergency fund set aside to be prepared for unplanned costs.
    • This is especially important for all the independent single ladies relying on one income. As a homeowner you will run into unexpected costs, having an emergency fund ready to go will provide you with reassurance that you are prepared and ready for those unexpected costs. Consult with your financial professionals to determine the right amount to save based on your lifestyle and goals.

Plan Ahead!

  1. Consider your future
    • Depending on what your goals are can vary the way you buy a home.
    • Keep your future in mind when looking for homes. This could be your forever home!
  2. Always save enough money to get you through multiple home payments
    • Having this cushion will provide you with the freedom to make decisions that are not money-driven. At a job you hate? Rest assured that you have a budget to get you through the job hunt. Craving a vacation? You can drink all the mojitos you want while knowing your bank account won’t overdraft when your mortgage payment comes out. 
  3.  Stick to your PLAN!
    • You have it in you, it got you to where you are now! Your real estate professional will help guide you in the direction that YOU want to go and that aligns with your financial goals.
    • If the house you can afford doesn’t have the Chip & Joanna style you love, a few trips to Target will have your new house feeling like home in no time.

Be Patient

  1. Don’t let the process overwhelm you 
    • If you feel overwhelmed with the costs of your dream home, it is okay to buy a house that requires some TLC. After you settle in you can decorate with a budget that works for YOU (or works for Target). 
  2. Take time to weigh your options and compare 
    • Observe the inside of the house: run the faucet, flush the toilets, check the HVAC (the whaaattt?).
    • If you have been living in an apartment – you might assume all of these things automatically work as new. Consult with your real estate agent to see who can provide these inspection services for you and determine what you can negotiate with the seller.

Want To Know More? 

Do you want to learn more about how YOU can become a woman in the housing and real estate ecosystem? Become a member of NAWRB! If you are a girl boss looking to expand your career, get on a corporate board, or become financially independent – NAWRBNAWRB supports ALL women as they march to the beat of their own drum. Photo below: Desiree Patno, CEO of NAWRB. Click here to hear from Desiree and solidify why YOU should join the NAWRB Ecosystem! 

Click here to watch Mortgage Banking Professional Adriana Shannon (an elite NAWRB member) talk about the ways NAWRB has empowered her and given her more of a voice not only in her career but in other aspects of life too.
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A Nightmare Real Estate Story – Groundhog Day Escrow

Posted on August 3, 2019. Filed under: escrow, First Time Buyer help, Orange County Real Estate, Real Estate Stories |

Groundhog escrow timeline (2)Do you love a good nail biting, back and forth drama flick? Or a hilarious Groundhog Day story that just couldn’t get any wackier? Since sometimes I feel like I’m in the middle of both of these flicks without a camera…I thought I would share with you. Getting this out there should feed your appetite for a good story, while I practice some humility and potentially lessen the PTSD. And **action**

Our Timeline – Deals Seem Great Until They Crumble

The story starts as a fairy tale with a full price offer, and a lender who was a trusted referral of the buyer’s agent. Here is how things started – escrow opened on April 11th, the Close of Escrow was scheduled May 10th. The deadline was missed meaning the tail chasing continued until May 17th. This caused the seller to become more and more anxious to close, while at the same time the buyer is refusing to close.

The seller asked to cancel the listing and pursue a different route – they wanted to sell with Zillow Offers. The Zillow Offer is verbal and is $50,000 LESS than all previous offers. The seller denies the offer. The buyer comes back to the table with a new offer – he can close with a new lender by the end of the month. The seller agrees but with a stipulation – the seller requests an immediate $2,000 deposit release and an additional $4,000 release if they do not close by 5 PM on July 1st.

Seller offers solution that covers $3,000 of the $4,500 in question. The buyers agent refuses to put addendum in writing, refuses to remove contingencies. On 5-29 a NEW offer is received & countered (but it was contingent on a sale). On 6-1 the seller tries to cancel my contract and states they would like to go with Zillow offers, I advised that they are under contract. They are resistant to follow the terms of the contract so I reiterate that they are welcome to sell to whomever they chose and are allowed not to sell the home however they are obligated to pay the commission fees. As a realtor, I completed the tasks it took to achieve a closing deal. The seller proceeds to initiate the Zillow offer anyway despite the fact that we are in a legal binding contract.

June 9th rolls around and we are notified that Zillow has proposed an “offer”. There is an inspection fee, a fee for estimated repairs, a Zillow convenience fee, and oh that didn’t cover any commissions. So Zillow really offered him $40,000 less after assessing fees and costs. As stated in our previous blog – Zillow Offer is providing you instant cash by cutting out the hassle – you are paying for this convenience by selling your house lower than market value.Real estate agent commissions are between 5-6%, if you are listing your home for 10-15% less than market value you are spending MORE money. Read more about how Zillow Offers work here. 

So to summarize the Zillow Offer: there is an initial below market value offer – deductions – estimated closing of $2,600 – estimated preparation & repair $3,000. The final offer is $40,000 below market value with a 72 hr deadline. Plus, the seller still owes my commission after that. The buyer comes back to the table on 6-10 saying they can close the loan IF the purchase price is a set price (above Zillow offer and above market value). The seller has a new tune now that he has sat on the market with only contingent offers or the Zillow *under marker value* offer.

We go back and forth on email and text with all, at least 2 email requests to send over a revised addendum. 48 hours go by, still no revised addendum in my inbox. My client keeps negotiating with himself the way Chris Voss tells us all to avoid (read his book here). I try to nicely explain this to him. It continues. If my client closes with this buyer we will be required to do all of the paperwork…again if the buyer closes with this lender.

The buyers agent edits the addendum manually, sends it to the lender, and doesn’t send it to us. We found out we had a fully executed addendum from the lender the next day. We are finally able to connect with the new lender and they seem confused that I don’t have the addendum too. We had already reached a closing disclosure –  a five-page form that provides final details about the mortgage loan you have selected. There are checks and balances through out this process, there are not just last minute surprises and missing documents by the time you reach closing disclosure. We experience some backpedals saying they may not have it fully executed. Best case scenario: we are left spinning our wheels, in a worst case scenario? Straight up fraud. The buyers agent is possibly the worst agent I have ever had to deal with. He abandoned his client, misled him, and left him to find his own lender. It was a shady process no matter the outcome. 

We come to an agreement that I will be the first to know if there are any hiccups with the loan; I tell her I’m just trying to protect my client. I’m still fighting for that same guy who wants to fire me. Because that is my job. All the while helping the buyer’s side get their full 3% commission. On 6-26 the deal finally closes. It is important for all of our clients to know and feel assured that as a real estate agent – we take several measures to protect a home buyer’s interests. It is a lenders objective when purchasing a home to protect their own financial interests. Real Estate Agents have a fiduciary duty to act with their clients (sellers and buyers) best interests in mind, through the highs and even the lows. We are working for you, to protect your financial interests and ensure that you are getting the best deal. Even through this nightmare real estate story, the clients best interest were always kept in mind.

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Zillow Offers: Not The American Dream

Posted on July 6, 2019. Filed under: First Time Buyer help, Home Seller Tips, Homeownership, Selling for top dollar, Selling your home fast |

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Zillow Offers provides sellers the opportunity to “skip the hassle and sell your home directly to Zillow.” Zillow Offers targets sellers who want to sell their property as fast as possible. The houses are sold quick and without the “hassle” of a traditional sell (no open houses, repairs are ‘taken care of’, you chose your move and closing date).

You might have seen Zillow advertised on billboards, commercials, or even on personalized yard signs. Zillow promises sellers an instant cash sale for their homes. It sounds great for sellers on a tight timeline, but what’s the catch?

Zillow Offers Are Below Market Value

While Zillow does provide a fast sale and near-instant cash to the seller, this comes at a cost. While your Zillow Offer is providing you instant cash by cutting out the hassle – you are paying for this convenience by selling your house lower than market value.

Zillow offers you a below market value Zestimate because they are taking on the responsibility of selling, fixing, and putting your home on the market. By selling your home for a lower market value, you are able to sell faster. However, Zillow is able to re-sell your home at the actual market value (after making repairs that were technically paid by you by selling the home for less).

What Your Zestimate Actually Costs You:

Zillow provides you with a Zestimate: the estimated market value. It is not an appraisal. After they provide the Zestimate they factor in information they receive from the seller (recent renovations, the current condition of the home, etc.), the opinion of a local real estate agent and fees. Zillow weighs whether renovations will be needed and the cost of holding and reselling the home. This is important to understand – while you do not have to make the necessary repairs and updates to your home, you are still paying to have those repairs completed (the cost is subtracted from your Zillow Offer).

While Zillow says they’ll take care of repairs these will often be priced above market value. This means you will be paying more for repairs than if you hired a contractor yourself. Additionally, you will not be benefiting from the equity that these repairs will bring to the cost of your home. Which means you are PAYING for the repairs by selling your home for less AND not earning anything from it.

Keep In Mind:

According to Zillow’s Offers page – once the Zillow Offer is confirmed, it may be adjusted when an in-person inspection is performed on the home. Just because you received the offer and it sounds appealing, this amount can still be adjusted.

Once Zillow purchases the home, they will make “necessary repairs and updates” and then put the home back on the market. By taking the burden of preparing your home to be listed off the seller – Zillow will earn the equity on your home (that you paid for).

It is important to note – you will still need an agent to determine an offer when using Zillow Offer. If a seller is represented by an agent and they accept a Zillow Offer, the agent still needs to be paid a commission by the seller based on the agreement between the seller and agent.

Sell Your Home Fast Without Losing Equity

Part of being a homeowner means you have invested in a property that will provide you with a return on your investment when you decide to sell. A fast sale should not compromise your investment and result in a below market value offer. We understand you want to sell your home fast – working with a real estate agent doesn’t mean that is an impossible ask.

Real estate agent commissions are between 5-6%, if you are listing your home for 10-15% less than market value you are spending MORE money. Real estate agents have resources to find you a buyer quickly.

If you are determined to move quickly, work with your real estate agent on setting a price that works for you and a buyer. Working with your real estate agent helps you receive better offers because your Agent is negotiating a deal on your behalf, one that will put money into your pocket! Real estate agents can sell your home quick without compromising your equity in the process.

 

If you have received your Zestimate and would like to compare the offer to market value, reach out to Angie today at: 949-338-7408. Comment below if you have a Zillow Offer Experience!

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Attention Graduates! Learn How To Start Saving For A Home Today!

Posted on June 29, 2019. Filed under: FHA loans, First Time Buyer help, Homeownership, Orange County Real Estate |

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Congratulations grads! You did it! Graduating is an exciting time in your life! The inevitable question always lingers: “what’s next?” If you are considering home ownership, you are already a step ahead!

Rent or Own?

One of the misconceptions people have about owning a home is that it costs more than renting. The rent prices have been increasing over the last few years making the cost of renting the same as a mortgage payment (sometimes MORE). Home ownership is associated with more up-front costs than renting however you could potentially earn that money back. The value of your future home may increase over time providing you with a return on your investment. California has an extremely profitable housing market.

Here is an example: In 1998 you purchased a home in California for $200,000. Despite the up-front costs and the down payment, you made the leap into home ownership. Fast forward to 2019, your needs have changed and you want to sell your home. You sell your home for over $600,000 dollars! That is money in your pocket and money that goes right into your next down payment! You can read more about the perks of being a first time home buyer HERE and start planning for your future today!

How Will I Afford A Down Payment?

Many first time home buyers still believe a 20% down payment is required before you can get approved for a mortgage. That is how conventional mortgages were designed however there are more options for buyers today. FHA loans, VA loans, and USDA loans provide different rates and charge insurance differently. It is important to choose the loan that fits your downpayment needs. Read more about your mortgage lending options here.

Let’s talk savings. Your best change to get the property you desire in the time frame that works for you is to have a down payment saved so you are ready when you find your perfect home. After considering your options, you have decided what your target down payment is. You just graduated, you might feel like that amount of money is unattainable for you to earn within a reasonable timeframe but what if you didn’t have to wait that long? Crowdfunding could provide you with the down payment you need, in the time you need it.

Crowdfunding is exactly what is sounds like – it is the use of small amounts of money from a large amount of people to help you finance your first home. Your graduation party is approaching, and you’ve probably heard that your graduation gift is… MONEY! Some graduates might want to spend that money ASAP. What if you INSTEAD contributed that money towards a savings account for your first home? Check out this graph:

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If you invite 100 people to your graduation party and they gift you $100 dollars each, that is $10,000 going towards your down payment! Not ready to make the jump into home ownership yet? Throw that money into a savings account and earn money from interest! When you are ready, the money is yours for the taking.

How Can I Start?

When you are ready, you can reach out to Angie or the Vow2Save Team and they will help you make every step to purchasing your new home easy and exciting! Then you will be able to customize your very own website however you would like. Let your friends and family know that you have a goal of becoming a first time homeowner and direct them to donate on your website! As donations roll in, the meter on the website will grow. This encourages your friends and family to help you reach your goal.

Ready to start saving for your home? Check out Vow2Save and start planning your future today. By the time your wedding rolls around you can create a wedding registry that will fill your home with things you love!

Contact the Vow2Save team today 1 (949)-338-7408

 

 

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Assuming A Property After The Death Of A Relative

Posted on June 22, 2019. Filed under: First Time Buyer help, Home Seller Tips, Homeownership |

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Losing a relative can be a very difficult time. We are very sorry for your loss. As you are figuring out your next steps, you may have questions about handling existing mortgage affairs. It is important to remember that you have options and we are here to help you consider the best options for your situation. An assumable mortgage is a home loan that can be transferred from the original borrower to the subsequent homeowner.

Determine if you are permitted to assume the loan

Not all mortgages are assumable – you can check the language in your note and mortgage. Certain types of government-backed loans are easier to assume than conventional loans. Typically you must meet the qualifications of the government agency in order to assume the loan. If you are not sure if you qualify – check with the lender of the loan as well as a real estate professional and a lawyer to ensure you will assume the loan properly.

Lean on professionals to help you determine if you should assume the loan

There are many benefits when assuming a mortgage. When you assume the mortgage, you keep the interest rate that the original owner had on the loan. This could increase the marketability of the property especially in a market where interest rates might be rising. Assumptions typically take less time. If you were listed on the note or in the trust agreement, the process could take only 30 days.

A properly recorded deed is public record. This means once an individual inherits the property – it becomes public record if a trust agreement was not in place. It is important to stand by your trusted professionals during this time to ensure you make the best decisions for you and your family. Offers will come your way that might encourage you to sell the home, it is important to make this decision based on what is best for you. Making sure you have the right people beside you during this difficult time is crucial to ensuring you make the best financial decisions.

Decide if selling the property would benefit you

It is important to remember that you have options. Selling the home might seem appealing and marketable however owning the home could provide an income for your family. Assuming the mortgage allows you to inherit a property at a lower cost, with potentially lower interest rates. If you assume the loan, you will have to pay taxes and assumption fees. While selling the home provides you with an advantage as a seller (lower rates, quicker closing) you could lose a valuable asset. Assuming the mortgage provides you with an opportunity to use the property as an investment. If you do not wish to reside in the home, you could consider using the property as an investment to provide a monthly income to you and your family.  Real estate is an imperishable asset with an increasing value. You can learn more about how to turn a property into a source of income here. 

If you have additional questions and are seeking help from a trusted professional, contact Angie at 949-338-7408. You can also fill out a contact form if you would like to discuss how you can begin the process of assuming a mortgage!

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5 Benefits You Need To Know About VA Loans

Posted on May 25, 2019. Filed under: First Time Buyer help, Homeownership, Making Life Easier, Orange County Real Estate, Spring Buying Season, VA Loan |

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To All of Our Veterans – Thank You. Happy Memorial day! 

The VA loan is a mortgage loan that is designed to help eligible veterans finance their home with no down payment – guaranteed by the US Department of Veterans Affairs.

5 Benefits You Need To Know About VA Loans

1. No down payment required!

The VA loan is a $0 down payment mortgage – available to Veterans, Service Members and certain military spouses. Conventional loans typically require a down payment that can be as high as 20%. While there is no down payment required, there is a VA Funding Fee. The fee is a governmental fee that is applied to every VA loan. This fee can change based on different circumstances and factors.

2. No Mortgage Insurance! 

Private Mortgage Insurance is a type of mortgage insurance that is required for borrowers who finance more than 80% of their home’s value. This is a monthly cost (or one-time upfront premium) that is added to a traditional mortgage loan. Because the VA Loans are government backed, Private Mortgage Insurance is not required by the banks! This is a huge savings for homeowners.

3. Easier to Qualify! 

These loans are backed by the government so that means banks assume that there is less risk involved. These loans do not have as many qualification standards as traditional home loans. These loans are easier to obtain and allow for more credit and income flexibility.

4. VA Loan Closing Costs Are Lower!

Another cost saving perk – the VA limits the closing costs lenders can charge to VA loan applicants. The average closing cost of the loan is between 1% – 3% of the loan amount. The percentage can raise to 3% – 5% if the home is less expensive. Your real estate agent can request the seller to cover some closing costs for you – reducing more costs for you.

5. The VA Loan Is Reusable! 

These loans are not just a one-time benefit. If you have earned this benefit, you have it for life! There is no limit on the number of times you may use the loan. The VA loan has accessibility to different property types, you could re-use it to buy a house, condo, new-built home, manufactured home, duplex or other types of properties It can even be used to refinance your existing mortgage.

 

Supporting our veterans with a lender who cares –

Derek Beisner

Have more questions about the VA loan process? Derek will be there to walk you through the process. He provides expert advice while walking you through every step of the process. You will be a client for life with Derek Beisner

Derek is available to text on weekends: 1 (949) 637-9939

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Is Seller Financing Right For You?

Posted on May 18, 2019. Filed under: First Time Buyer help, Home Seller Tips, Homeownership, Lenders & Loan info, Orange County Real Estate, Spring Buying Season |

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Seller financing is an agreement in which the seller handles the mortgage process instead of a financial institution. Seller financing cuts out the middleman and some of the red tape that comes with real estate transactions. The seller is the lender in this type of transaction, this allows the buyer to make payments without the hassle of a loan.

Seller financing is a better option in a buyers’ market however this benefits both the buyer and the seller of the home. Here is some quick facts about seller financing!

Pros for the Buyer!

  • Faster Closing Process – skip the bank lines. You won’t have to wait on a loan officer, underwriter or legal department to review and approve the loan application
  • Saves Money – no bank fees or appraisal costs
  • Seller financing lets people who might not be able to secure a mortgage buy a home
  • The down payment is based on an agreement between you and the seller

Pros for the Seller!

  • Sell quicker – you have the potential and ability to negotiate to sell the property “as is” without making costly repairs
  • Investment!  Earning money from the lending process
  • Retain the title: if the buyer defaults – the seller keeps the down payment and the house – rather than the bank

Take Aways:

  • Working with a real estate agent in addition to a real estate attorney is necessary. They will write the sales contract and the promissory note
  • Sellers should (and can) run a credit check
  • Buyers should offer a 10% down payment
  • Don’t forget about your credit score – it is still important and considered in the transaction

Learn more about the seller financing process here:

https://www.nolo.com/legal-encyclopedia/seller-financing-home-sales-30164.html

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Spring Cleaning – Orange County Tree Trimming Services

Posted on April 27, 2019. Filed under: First Time Buyer help, Home Improvement Ideas, Home Seller Tips, Homeownership, Making Life Easier, Spring Buying Season |

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The birds are chirping and days are getting longer – spring has sprung! Whether you’re selling your home soon or just want to spruce it up – we wanted to share with you our favorite tree trimming service here in Orange County! Tree Trimming Team – TTT is fast, professional, and knowledgable.

Lets Talk Trees

Properly maintained trees will help you get top dollar for your home, and ‘tree hacking’ by beginners is a real struggle. You don’t want your car squished or someone falling out of the tree on your property. We wanted to provide you with a quick post supporting a small business that will help make your life easier!

Tree Trimming Team can do regular pruning, trimming, unsightly stump removal, palm tree skimming, and more. Since these jobs are tough and frequently require a team, they can turn good buyers away! If you’re planning to sell for top dollar then it’s important to have top dollar curb-appeal.

Meet The Experts (for free!)

Bob is the teams Arborist with 49 years experience! Just priceless if you have a precious tree that you want brought back to life. They offer free consultations so that you can have a true expert come out! The team is bilingual with license, insurance, bonding and workers comp. You can find their raving reviews on Yelp, Instagram & Facebook. They do commercial too.

Our contact is Amir Sharafi with Tree Trimming Team info@treetrimmingteam.com 949 874-7538 – please let him know that we referred you! You can learn about other spring cleaning professionals in our LeTip group: http://ocletip.com/

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What the hoo is an ADU?? Maximizing your Southern California Real Estate

Posted on April 16, 2019. Filed under: Accessory Dwelling Units, ADUs, AirBnB, FHA loans, First Time Buyer help, Home Improvement Ideas, Homeownership, Informed Investor Alliance, Lenders & Loan info, Los Angeles property, Los Angeles Real Estate, Orange County Home Improvement, Orange County Real Estate | Tags: , , , , |

Have you heard of an ADU?

Accessory Dwelling Units are additional legal units on your property, and they can help you earn BIG bucks. If you’d like to run a duplex or generate additional income without buying an entire new property, then adding an ADU to your lot is a GREAT option. ADU’s can cost anywhere from 20K-200K, which is waaaay cheaper than a ‘unit’ in today’s Southern California real estate market. That said, not everyone has an additional 20-200K laying around to seize this opportunity, so let’s learn how you can use other people’s money to make some of your own!

Renovation loans are NOT construction loans, so if you have never heard of one… read on. There are multiple options for reno loans, so it’s about finding your best fit. Today we were at Eric C Miller’s Finance of America’s presentation and got some details & highlights for you. Finance of America highlighted how this process benefits you!

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Orange County Renovation loan process in a nutshell:

Pre-qualification –> Offer Accepted –> Disclose –> Underwriting conditional commitment –> Assign Project manager –> Collect credit conditions –> Project Scope & bids –> Appraisal –> Clear to Close –> Sign Docs –> Close –> Begin Renovations

Fannie Mae Homestyle Renovation Loan

  • Utilizes a construction project inspector sourced by lender
  • No minimum in repairs
  • Inspection prior to draw disbursements, up to 5 draws
  • All repairs and improvements must be attached to property, and supported by appraisal
  • Borrowers have 6 months to complete improvements
  • Repairs must begin within 30 days. (it’s ok if permits are the delay…you can pull permits on a property you don’t yet own)

They can be FHA or conventional, and they are a fully amortized single close transaction. 98% of the time they appraise on resales, so don’t worry if you’re buying resale.

FHA 203K – limited

  • nothing structural,
  • limit of 35K,
  • repairs must be completed in 4 months
  • limit of only two payments to each contractor

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FHA 203K – standard

  • can tear down the entire property but MUST use the entire foundation
  • utilizes a HUD consultant.
  • 6 months to complete improvements
  • can loan up to FHA limit for the county, high balance eligible
  • owner occupants only
  • Contract lingo: “The borrower has applied for Section 203k financing, and that the contract is contingent upon mortgage approval and the borrowers acceptance of additional required improvements”…this must be in there, but is not necessary in the purchase agreement.

Things to know & next steps:

  • Choosing the right contractor and renovation team is critical! Always get multiple quotes. If you’re looking for a forward thinking Orange County ADU company, check out RC Smith Design & Build.
  • 30 day escrows won’t fly, renovation loans take 45-60 days.
  • Reno loans are TOUGH. You’ve got to coordinate bids, contractors, and make deadlines. If you’re looking for an ‘easy button’ into homeownership, this may not be it 😉 BUT then again…you could try buying one of these Amazon ADU’s and avoid MOST of the contractor back and forth 🙂
  • ADU regulations are different and ever-changing. Here’s an OC ADU resource to get started. Always check with the city to find out your guidelines before beginning work or submitting offers!

Did you know most people spend 15K on their home the first year they buy it, and they statistically put it on credit cards? Ouch. Don’t be that guy, there’s a better way! Call or text Angie to start exploring your best ADU options at 949-338-7408 or email Angie@AskAngie.com

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Congrats! You Made It To Escrow! Now What?

Posted on April 13, 2019. Filed under: escrow, First Time Buyer help, Making Life Easier, Orange County Real Estate | Tags: , , , |

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Your offer has been accepted – congratulations! You’re ready to settle into your dream home and enjoy a glass of wine. The only thing standing between you and the keys to your new home is escrow, so now what? You’ve probably heard the term escrow (also referred to as closing) thrown around but didn’t quite understand what it meant. Escrow is something most people don’t fully understand until they experience it. In a nutshell, they are your neutral third party assisting to ensure the contract is executed correctly by all sides. 

The Orange County Escrow Process Made Easy

 
Escrow protects all parties involved in the real estate transaction (including you)! Escrow is a third party service that holds a valuable asset (in this case – your “earnest” money) until the transaction between the seller and the buyer is complete. Once your offer is accepted, an escrow company is hired to implement the transaction in accordance with the terms of the sales agreement.

Does A Home Buyer or Seller Choose Escrow?

Not all Escrow companies are created equal and we always prefer to work with companies we know and trust. That said, it’s our advice to negotiate price over services. If you are a buyer, you may get the seller to accept your offer or your price if you let them choose the escrow company. In most Orange County and SoCal cases, the seller selects the escrow and title companies used for closing.

What Happens Next? How Do We Close Escrow?

It’s a series of steps in a specific order of operations. Your escrow, title, and lender will know it all and help guide you through. As your Realtor, it’s our job to make sure they are all doing theirs. Sometimes it feels like a circus and sometimes it feels like a symphony. Rather than writing you a book, here’s a fun graphic thanks to Finance Of America Mortgage to guide you through the main hurdles, contingencies and objections to overcome!

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5 Tips To Make Your Escrow Process Run Smoothly

1. Let Your Lender Lead The Way!

You’ll need to sign loan disclosures before an appraisal can be ordered, so do everything your lender requests and do it promptly. This is the BEST way to have a smooth escrow.

2. Complete Documentation

The purchase agreement must be completed with signatures from all parties. The Escrow officer will send a package of paperwork, make sure to be on the lookout for this paperwork and complete it promptly. Signing documents online will help you stay organized.

3. Sign On Time

The purchasing of a home will require a significant amount of paperwork and legal documents. It is important that all of this paperwork is signed and in a timely manner to ensure that the sale may proceed without any delays. The escrow officer will take possession of these documents to ensure that all necessary paperwork has been completed, signed, and filed on time.

4. Communicate!

Check your email regularly! Your escrow officer will be reaching out to all parties involved frequently! Your escrow officer might need a signature sent over in a timely manner.

5. Halt Credit Utilization – You’re In A Financial Fishbowl

During the closing process, your financial history is being reviewed carefully and frequently. A change in your financial circumstances could implode the escrow process. You have made it this far based on your current financial standing – if changes occur lenders have the right the always make drastic changes.

Learn about what to avoid when closing on a mortgage here:
3 Ways To Mess Up Closing

If you are ready to get your escrow process stated, contact Angie Weeks at 949-338-7408!

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Using Your Tax Return for Your Home’s Down Payment

Posted on April 6, 2019. Filed under: First Time Buyer help |

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Tax Season Ending Soon

It’s almost time for the last tax returns to be sent out and the final time to file if you haven’t already. Every year when this time rolls around people update their cars or go on family vacations, but did you ever think about using your tax return to buy your first home? It’s definitely doable and probably the wisest way to use your return – here’s how.

Low Down Payments

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With as little as 3% down the majority of your down payment could be your tax return which leaves you only a little to save throughout the year with the goal in mind of buying your first home around this time of the year. We believe this is an attainable goal for many of our clients and their friends. We know the idea of a down payment seems impossible and really steep when you think about in terms of income and other things needed throughout the year. However, if you plan to put your whole tax return towards it, that limits a lot of the stress and savings throughout the year.

We work with some awesome mortgage guys that we know could steer you in the right direction of getting approved. Derek Beisner was a great resource for us when looking for current down payment rates in California, and he would be a great resource for you as well. We would love to sit down with you and help you plan out a realistic goal for yourself based on your tax return and the amount your wanting to spend on a home. Contact Angie at 949-338-7408 if this sounds like something you could do!

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Equity Shares – Buying a Home Despite Student Debt

Posted on February 2, 2019. Filed under: Equity Shares, First Time Buyer help, Homeownership, Orange County Real Estate, Owning Despite Student Debt | Tags: , , , , |

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Student Debt Does Not Have to Prevent You From Owning a Home

There’s a lot of us out here now that are facing the consequences of hefty student loan debt. Investing in our education can sometimes feel like a losing battle but it is still important to invest in your future. Part of investing in your future is thinking of buying a home so that you aren’t piling on money every month for rent when you could be owning something instead. Many graduates don’t think they can ever own a home while paying on their student debt, but that isnt the case. There are a lot of things that Realtors can help you figure out when you are ready. One of the easiest solutions is for your parents to cosign the loan with you.

Equity Shares

If you’re a responsible student or graduate that has a job and wants to buy a home but have a hard time getting approved for a loan due to overwhelming student debt, you can have your parents or someone in your family cosign with you so that you are able to take out the loan. This equity share is just saying they are equally sharing the responsibility with you for your loan. You would make the payments, but their name has to be on the loan insuring lenders that if for some reason you couldn’t pay, your family would have your back in making that payment for you. This helps both of you out because you are building positive debt instead of throwing away money renting something you could own for less. Parents are able to build positive debt for themselves while also helping their children out who are making the payments anyways.

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Setting Our Kids Up For Success

As parents we always want what is best for our children. We are always looking for ways to improve ourselves as parents so that our children grow up into the best versions of themselves. Many of us expect our kids to go off to college after high school and pursue a higher education for their future careers. However, we don’t always think about how much that is going to cost them not only financially, but also in time and future reliabilities. The average student loan debt for a four year degree in 2015 was $30,100 – that’s a lot of money! Knowing that information it makes it easier to understand why younger adults aren’t owning homes because they simply can’t get approved with that kind of debt racked up. This is where parents come in again, wanting what is best for our children and helping out wherever we can. Helping your kid with a down-payment on their first home is an amazing investment! If you aren’t able to help them with their down-payment to get them approved you can cosign a loan with them so that the lender feels more confident and lending them money to purchase their first home. They invested in their education, now it is our chance to invest in them and their future family’s home.

If this is something you think would work for your family and you want to see what else you can do to get approved or help your child get approved for their home text Angie at 949-338-7408! She plans on getting you in with a down payment source and herself to answer any questions or concerns you may have!

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Ringing in 2019 with Real Estate Goals

Posted on January 11, 2019. Filed under: AirBnB, Buying in Spain, Divorce, First Time Buyer help, Home Seller Tips, Homeownership, Making Life Easier, Orange County Real Estate, Renting, Selling for top dollar, Selling your home fast, Vow2Save Orange County Real Estate Registry | Tags: , , , , , |

Dream Big, Set Goals, Take Action Chalk Drawing

What will your 2019 look like?

We have some big goals for 2019 – one of them being helping our clients achieve their real estate new years resolutions! Whether it’s buying internationally or crowdfunding a down payment for an engaged couple, we can help you accomplish them all. Every year our whole team writes down their goals for the new year and we try to help each other accomplish them. This year, we want to do the same with all of our clients. Writing them down and being able to cross them off when they are accomplished really makes you feel good and it will make us feel good to be able to help you do that.

AskAngie Team’s Goals

Our team has a few things were really excited for this year! This year we plan to really grow our Vow2Save program. We are looking forward to helping a lot more engaged couples crowdfund a down payment so that they are able to buy a home after their wedding. This has been a goal of ours for a few years, and after a lot of work in 2018 we know it is really going to be taking off this year and we can’t wait to see the things it can do for people! We also plan to travel more this year in order to have the best information in helping our clients buy overseas. Last year we went to Spain and met with Realtors there, but we want to be able to do that in many more countries.

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So much more we can do for you!

If you need help selling or buying a home after a divorce or identifying a good AirBnB investment we can help with that and everything in between. We have various services that we are experienced in. Another goal we know some of our clients have is to stop renting and own their first home and we are so excited to help many people achieve that this year especially with the current rent prices in OC. We can help you figure out what your home is worth and how you can sell it fast and for top dollar! We truly value our time with our clients and being able to help them grow their real estate profile and accomplish their goals. If you have any questions or want to share your goals with us so we are better able to  help you please fill out the form below or contact Angie at 949-338-7408!

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Homeownership Day at Chapman University – have you registered?

Posted on December 15, 2018. Filed under: First Time Buyer help |

Our annual is Homeownership Day is coming soon!

This years OC Home Fair at Chapman University (1 University Drive in Orange) is on January 19th from 10 AM – 1 PM and we are so excited to see you there! This year will feature more classes than previous years and so much opportunity to further your knowledge in real estate and investing in your future. We have some amazing speakers planned for you this year!

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NAWRB’s OC Home Fair Class

Desiree Patno the CEO and President of Women in the Housing and Real Estate EcoSystem (NAWRB)Women in the Housing and Real Estate EcoSystem (NAWRB) will be teaching a class at this years OC Home Fair about “Buying a home under your business umbrella.” Desiree’s knowledge and experience in the real estate business is incredible and being able to hear her speak in such a small setting is a true treat. NAWRB is dedicated to providing women with tools and opportunities for economic expansion and growth, while advocating and promoting women-owned business specializing in the housing economy. Joining NAWRB provides you with many benefits such as: Leadership opportunities, resource and business growth, marketing and exposure, access to executive resources, NAWRB’s business directory, and direct referrals from NAWRB. You can learn even more about the benefits of NAWRB and so much more if you attend this years Homeownership Day and sign up for Desiree’s class.

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Nonprofit Panel

This years nonprofit panel consists of NeighborWorksOC and Affordable Housing OC! Together they are teaching class on finding funds to buy your home. They are focusing on making sure you know how to contact local non profits to help with your down payment in order to purchase your own home. This class is gong to be one of the most helpful and most needed of the ones we are offering. If you have been dreaming of purchasing your own home but aren’t sure how you will ever be able to afford the down payment then this class is perfect for you! These non profit organizations have the tools to help you find the right resource for you to use in order to make your dreams come true.

If you are ready to join us but haven’t registered yet, click here and register! You can find more information on our classes for the 7th annual homeownership day on the website as well. If you have any additional questions Angie can answer them at 949-338-7408.

We can’t wait to see you there!

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Orange County Area #2 in Global Relocations

Posted on December 4, 2018. Filed under: First Time Buyer help, Homeownership, Informed Investor Alliance, International Properties, Lenders & Loan info, Los Angeles property, Los Angeles Real Estate, Making Life Easier, Orange County Real Estate | Tags: , , , , , , , , |

I’ve got to hand it to OCR’s Global Committee, they ALWAYS put on such relevant and informational events. We continually try to support them and keep our CIPS education up to date 🙂 Today was the Global Forum, packed with info on how we can better serve and attract foreign buyers to beautiful Southern California. International buyers are a huge market in SoCal – read on to learn more about taking advantage of this!

Did you know the Orange County & Los Angeles area is the #2 area of interest for international buyers and global relocations? 

IMG_6967So how can we help international buyers make the most of their money, so they can close easy and afford to pay more for our properties?! One way is MoneyCorp – a unique banking tool international buyers are using to get better exchange rates and guarantee funds. Contact Andrew Graziani to learn about their no-fee / no hassle transactions. They have very small minimums to exchange, and no caps. Furthermore, they have a deep understanding of how to work with every country’s currency, which is not easy. For example, consider Brazil, one currency that bounces around up to 30% in one month, and has a ton of regulations. If you want to protect your foreign transaction, make sure to work with experts like this! There are a ton of landmines when completing a foreign transaction, as noted from our previous Global Forum.

National Economic Forecast by Lawrence Yun

Lawrence Yun is one of the most respected in our industry – as National Association of Realtors’ Chief Economist for the last 10 years… when he speaks.. we listen 🙂 Let’s start with the local picture:

Is Orange County in a Real Estate Bubble? 

Of course, the first thing everyone wonders is ‘are we in a bubble?’ One recent thing to note is the housing market has not been increasing as the job market increases, which is a bit of a bummer. Regardless, Mr Yun doesn’t see any kind of extreme correction on the horizon. Home prices are 3.5x higher since 1995. Lawrence, like the other experts at the recent WCR Economic Throwdown, doesn’t believe there is a bubble. SO STOP WORRYING :))

Seriously, don’t worry, but do always be on the lookout for risks or warning signs of a market shift

  • International trade wars
  • Rising rates and inverted yield curve
  • Shift to snowballing pessimism (perception is reality!)

We have nothing to fear but fear itself – Franklin Roosevelt

What about Interest Rates?

We are on a permanent track to increase rates, so our advice to International buyers is buyer sooner than later, the rates will only rise.

The Global Real Estate Market

Exchange rate, political environment, and comparative price appreciation are all factors that affect our foreign buyers. At this point in time, the US currency conversion is high, so we saw less foreign buyers in 2018 than in 2017. That said, we still have PLENTY of international buyers, and that is not expected to change soon, only increase. Foreigners still love to buy in the United States, overall it’s considered it very safe and secure here.

IMG_6962

Global Committee chair Spencer Hoo introduces 2018 Global Forum speakers

As financing, exchange rates, inventory, and immigration laws all improve, we can expect more and more foreign transactions. Currently, here’s the top 5 countries buying US homes:

  1. China
  2. Canada
  3. Mexico
  4. India
  5. United Kingdom

19% go to Florida, and 14% come here to California!

More expectations for the US market:

  • Short term uncertainty but long term solid pent-up demand
  • Next 3 years of home sales…..booooorrrrrrring. No real increases or decreases
  • Flat & even real estate market

If you’d like a consultation to make sure your home is attractive to the foreign buyer pool as our market softens a bit, just give Angie a call, text 949-338-7408, or WeChat.

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