Orange County Real Estate

Join us at OC Home Fair – Homeownership Day Event!

Posted on December 15, 2017. Filed under: First Time Buyer help, Home Seller Tips, Homeownership, Los Angeles Real Estate, Orange County Real Estate | Tags: , , , , , |

You’re invited to our 6th annual homeownership day! If you have been thinking about making some real estate decisions but have been holding back because you weren’t sure exactly what you wanted to do or how you wanted to do it, join us and learn about real estate from professionals! Our event will be held January 27th from 10 AM – Noon at Chapman University  (1 University Drive in Orange) and we really hope to see you there!

Our Homeownership Event is FREE and offers 8 classes to choose from during 2 different 50 minute sessions. We are offering some great classes this year that you are not going to want to miss out on! We have something for everyone, regardless of if you own or not. If you’re a veteran thinking about buying a home – we’ve got class for that! If you’re a female and wanting to learn how to grow your real estate profile to be super successful – we’ve got a class for that! Along with safely buying international real estate, finding funds to buy your home…. and…. the one we will be teaching with our YPN friend Eric Wu – Investing to be an Automatic Millionaire. We’d love it if you signed up for our class during your first session and learn about investing in properties to help build your future wealth! If you want to sign up or just check out what all will be offered head over to OC Home Fair website!

Here’s some pictures of our event classes last year, we are hoping to put on an even bigger and better event this year!
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We were lucky enough to work with some amazing event partners this year! Chapman University Argyos School of Business is always so generous to offer their classrooms, which allow you to learn in a pitch-free and no pressure environment. Some of our sponsors and nonprofits that are attending with you are NeighborWorks Orange County, Affordable Housing Clearinghouse, VAREP, Orange County Young Professionals Network, and NAWRB!

Don’t forget to fill out the form below to reserve your seat in our #OCHomeFair class:

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Orange County Electrician to help with your Smart Homes!

Posted on October 13, 2017. Filed under: First Time Buyer help, Informed Investor Alliance, Making Life Easier, Orange County Home Improvement, Orange County Real Estate, Property Mangement, Smart Homes | Tags: , , , , |

Have you been wanting to upgrade your home to fit in with this century’s technology frenzy? We have the perfect guy and team to help you do just that!

Mark Gerhard at Gerhard Electric based out of Laguna Hills is an expert on working with smart homes. He can provide you with an instant ring door bell, almost like caller ID for your front door! They can help you install and integrate your Alexa and nest thermostat. They also offer replacing your canned lighting with LED so you can go green and save some money!

Installing a charging station for your electric vehicle in your garage, updating old wiring for safety purposes, and installing hard wired and wireless safety smoke detectors are just a few more things they can help you with. We think a lot of our clients and friends could benefit from a few of these things in there homes!

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Smart Home Installation Help

They will do it all for you from installing the product you buy or providing the product themselves and helping you to install it. One of our favorite packages is the doorbell camera and one motion sensor for $783!

We know Mark Gerhard and the team at Gerhard Electric through Saddleback @ Work and our OC LeTip Group and are pleased to be able to recommend them to you all! Get ahold of Mark and his crew at (949) 951-0490!

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Real Estate Realities – Should you buy that Long Beach fixer upper?

Posted on October 6, 2017. Filed under: First Time Buyer help, Long Beach Homes, Los Angeles Real Estate, Making Life Easier, Orange County Real Estate, Real Estate Stories | Tags: , , |

What buying a fixer upper can turn into for you!

Most of us are obsessed with the show Fixer Upper on HGTV where we watch Chip & Joanna Gaines turn older houses into beautiful, updated remodels. Most of us don’t realize this is possible for us to do ourselves, so when we go to look at houses we expect one that already looks like Joanna has put her touch on it. However, we want a fixer price on a newly updated house. It’s ok to admit…we see this every. single. day.

Most times buying a house with a lot of potential and a smaller price tag is beneficial to you and your future…ESPECIALLY on your first place.

Check out what one of our clients, Jason from Long Beach, did to this cosmetic fixer-upper he purchased! Jason looked for quite some time and had specific ideas of what he wanted for his interior. Unfortunately, nothing’s ever perfect. So he decided to buy the ugly duck in the perfect area, and turn it into a swan 🙂

We referred Jason to one of our absolute favorite buildings in Long Beach, located at 555 Maine. We love this location because it’s super affordable, has low HOA, includes parking, is FHA approved, they are big dog-friendly, and um….top it off with a rooftop deck that has city views. So cool.

Here are some interior photos of when he first bought the property. Of course, we helped him nab this condo towards the very low end of comps in the downtown Long Beach area:

It was livable, but nothing really special. Which is always a bummer when you spend hundreds of thousands of dollars. We know, you want to brag about your new home! So….. check out what he did! What an amazing transformation! We are obsessed! Clean lines, consistent colors, upgraded appliances, quartz counters….niiiiiiice 🙂

The time to complete the project was about two months, and with his permission we’re able to post that he invested in the ballpark of $40k.

In true fixer upper style, we’d say after this remodel Jason would easily be selling close to the top of the comps in the area, which gives him about 10K in equity already! Best part is he’s only 6 months into this adventure and living in a great space where he got to choose his decor. Congratulations on a job well done, Jason! We are so proud and amazed with the work you got done on this place while working your hectic hours!

jason

If you’d like to take on a cosmetic fixer challenge just get in touch with us by filling out the form below or texting Angie at 949-338-7408.

 

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Hot Topic: FHA or Conventional Loan?

Posted on September 22, 2017. Filed under: Conventional Loan, FHA loans, First Time Buyer help, Lenders & Loan info, Orange County Real Estate | Tags: , , |

Wondering which home loan will be best for you? Here’s some helpful tips

Lots of buyers have been questioning which loan is best for them and their situation. Honestly, it does depend on just that – your situation. We have put together some information on both of these loan options to make it easier for you to decide what you think is best for yourself! Some of the biggest, but most simple differences between FHA and conventional loans are based on their guidelines and who can apply for them. FHA loans are government backed programs that require a minimum 3.5% down payment. These loans tend to be best for borrowers with lower credit than necessary to apply for a conventional loan.

Conventional loans are open-market and are geared for people with a higher credit score, typically near 700 or higher. Rates tend to be a bit lower, and in most cases no Mortgage Insurance is required.

FHA used to be a much more expensive option, but after FHA MIP reductions in 2015 it is now a real competitor. However, FHA can tend to be more strict in requirements than a conventional loan is.

What does an FHA Loan Require?

FHA loans require homes to have the following in good working order:

  • stove
  • heat
  • functioning roof
  • locking doors and windows
  • non-lead based paint

If you are looking to buy a condo… it can only be in a FHA approved community. So if you are choosing FHA, you may have less home options available to you. FHA loans also require you to purchase mortgage insurance which protects the lenders from a loss. In January of 2015, the FHA reduced the annual mortgage insurance premium on a 30 year fixed rate from 1.35 % to 0.85% of the loan balance. This is leading to huge savings for many who want a condo but just don’t have the larger down payment.

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Okay, so which home loan should you choose?

There isn’t one specific answer that fits everybody. It all depends on you, your needs and wants, and what you can afford to choose. If you plan on owning your home for 6-10 years and you don’t mind refinancing to cancel your mortgage insurance you might choose FHA. If you can put 5% down, you plan on keeping your home for 10-20 years and you don’t like the idea of paying mortgage insurance for thirty years you may choose conventional!

If you are looking into buying a home and need help finding one along with deciding which loan option is best for you – we can help! We work with a lot of amazing lender contacts locally here in Orange County that we would love to set you up with. We like to match-make our clients with lenders that we think will benefit them the most. Depending on your personality, wants/needs, and what kind of loan you are interested in all helps us decide which lender will be best for you! Fill out the form below or contact Angie at 949-338-7408 for more information 🙂

 

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Is it time to hire a property manager?

Posted on August 24, 2017. Filed under: Balboa's Best Property Deals, Home Seller Tips, Making Life Easier, OC Property Management, Orange County Real Estate, Property Mangement | Tags: , , , |

Thinking about hiring a property manager? Here’s some reasons why you might want to!

Are you having to move away but want to keep your current home and just don’t have the time to take care of it or deal with renting it out to someone else? Do you own multiple properties and don’t have the time to take care of one or more? Are you frustrated with trying to find a renter for your home but need to get it done? Any of these situations are when hiring a property manager comes in handy and really benefits you! Did you know AskAngie team is willing to be your property manager and take these tasks off your shoulders? Well we are, and we can’t wait to share how with you!

We can think of lots of people who would benefit from this process but here is a few on our list:

  • Active military or veterans who are moving to a different location
  • Seniors looking for additional income without hassles
  • Busy executives who travel
  • Active duty military who are deploying
  • A landlord who needs some extra help
  • Relocating for a job but know you want to move back to your home in sunny California someday

What will we do for you as your property manager?

Helping you take care of your home while someone else lives in it is something we are experienced and know how to do for you. We know dealing with this can be such a hassle, and we are ready to make it easier and smoother for you!

  • We will do all the advertising for you that you will need in order to find you the perfect renter for your home! We will initiate, sign, and renew any leasing agreements as well as any terminations that may need to be done, so that you don’t have to worry about the paperwork.
  • We always run credit reports and verify previous tenancy when looking at a potential renter. We also have access to run a complete background check if needed!
  • We will handle getting any repairs or maintenance work that needs to be done, done for you! Living far away from your property or being busy with work can make it hard to be on top of repairs and maintenance your renter may want or need, but don’t worry – we’ve got it handled for you!
  • We take care of issuing any notices like past due rent or notices to vacate.
  • Contracts, expense payments, and security deposits is so much to worry about and make sure you get done, but once again we would do it all for you so there would be no worrying necessary!

Honestly, just kick your feet up and relax – we’ve got this!!
We take care of all the heavy lifting as well as being a professional shoulder to lean on while renting our your home. It really does take so much weight off your shoulders!

How much do Orange County Property Management Services cost?

I’m sure you’re wondering what cost all this work comes at, so here it is:

for a single family home, townhouse or condo we charge only $175 a month to take care of all of these things for you.

Multiple units would depend on the number of units that property had, but it usually ends up being about 5% of the total gross rents from that particular property.
What do you have to lose besides for some extra stress? If this feels like something you need to take advantage of, give us a call today at 949-338-7408! We look forward to hearing from you 🙂

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CIPS – Why we think International Real Estate is so important!

Posted on August 18, 2017. Filed under: Balboa's Best Property Deals, Home Seller Tips, Informed Investor Alliance, International Properties, Orange County Real Estate | Tags: , , , , |

First of all, what even is a CIPS?

That is what AskAngie team is here to explain! CIPS stands for Certified International Property Specialist, which means that we are designees that have been trained and certified on how to help you with your international real estate needs. We are well informed on how different cultures interpret people and real estate. CIPS designees are prepared to work with international clients, international funds, as well as American clients who choose to buy internationally. We are relied on because of our expertise in international real estate.

Why do we need Certified International Property Specialists?

Global business and international real estate have expanded a lot so these designees are need more now than ever before! Recently, foreign buyers have spent a lot more money in real estate – to the tune of over 1 BILLION per year. Earning the CIPS title makes agents more creditable and resourceful. CIPS have access to a wide network of professionals that can help you with your property needs around the world. Through research we are able to protect you from losing property or buying in a country where you don’t actually ‘own’ your home. We make sure you are buying legitimate properties wherever you may be looking! People are moving from foreign countries to the US every single day and many Americans look into property overseas as well. Because of the work Certified International Property Specialists do, these home owners are able to have a smooth and reliable transition into their new space (or out of their old)!

Watch this video on why we think CIPS is an important designation!

We recommend if you’re thinking about buying out of the country, call us at 877-230-3211 or text Angie at 949-338-7408 to take advantage of the CIPS education and put it to work for your real estate needs! 🙂

international

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New Orange County Homes Coming Soon!

Posted on July 3, 2017. Filed under: Balboa's Best Property Deals, First Time Buyer help, Informed Investor Alliance, Los Angeles property, OC Property Profiles, Orange County Real Estate |

DCIM100MEDIADJI_0230.JPGHot new listings that haven’t hit the MLS

Summer is in full swing & we’re excited to bring Orange County some more home inventory – listings have been tight this year and we’re hearing it from buyers in every price range – entry level to luxury homes! If you’re thinking of selling your place, now is a great time to consider.  If you’d like the hot ticket on some homes not yet on the MLS, keep reading..

23412 Pacific Park, Aliso Viejo CA 92656. Fresh carpet and paint in this 2 bed 2 bath Canyon Villas condo. New plumbing, direct access garage, courtyard view, & cozy fireplace all for just $399,999.

1032 Saint Vincent, North Tustin CA 92705. Huge opportunity to gain sweat equity in this 2621 sq ft single level on a 14,700 sq ft lot. Located on a quiet cul de sac with a workroom space off of garage. Schools are all 9 or 10 rated, & you’re centrally located in the heart of OC. This hidden gem is just waiting for a little love. Pre-MLS price: 875K.

Rancho Mission Viejo, CA. Sendero community immaculate design & just 2 over years young. Only had one owner, you could be next! 3 beds, 3 baths, 2 car garage – 2391 sq ft on a 4516 sq ft lot. Walk to pool, parks, and trails for just 950K.

3904 River Ave, Newport Beach CA 92663 for sale for the first time in over 40 years! Countdown to your perfect beach life: 4 beds, 3 baths, 2 car garage, and 1 boat dock 🙂 Stroll to Newport Beach, shopping, restaurants, and pier. Pre MLS invite only open house on July 20th, 2017. Fill out the interest list form on the link for an invite! Priced at just $2,499,000 this is the cheapest priced boat dock listing in Newport. You’ll have to paddle quick to catch this wave!

Prefer Los Angeles area energy?

3710 McKenzie Los Angeles CA 90032 We’ve got a duplex there, too, and it needs a handyman! It’s an ideal time to get into El Sereno during it’s regentrification phase – the area is up & coming located right between downtown LA & downtown Pasadena.

If you’d like an earlybird preview on any of these listings just call or text Angie at 949-338-7408 and we’d be happy the help you get a new pad this summer!

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INVITATION: Citrus College Home Fair

Posted on April 10, 2017. Filed under: First Time Buyer help, Home Seller Tips, Informed Investor Alliance, Lenders & Loan info, Making Life Easier, Orange County Real Estate, Orange County things to do | Tags: , , , , , , , |

Interested in buying a home in Southern California but don’t know how? Would you like safe and solid info on Real Estate Investing or Market reports and trends? We’ve got you covered with free sessions at Citrus College on April 23rd.

The event will be held from 11am – 3pm with an hour lunch break. There are 3 different sessions, each with 4 classes to choose from ranging from flipping to first time buying. We feel honored to be asked to teach 2 classes – Investing and Market Report. Come join us and learn how to buy real estate! The first 100 registrations receive a free lunch on Citrus Real Estate Club – just sign up below.

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Yes, sign me up for Citrus College’s Home Fair on April 23rd!

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How to Buy an Orange County Home with 1% Down

Posted on March 23, 2017. Filed under: First Time Buyer help, Lenders & Loan info, Making Life Easier, Orange County Real Estate | Tags: , , , , , , |

We believe everyone, EVERYONE, deserves to own a home!! So what’s your biggest obstacle to get there?

Down payment funds?! Probably!

We don’t live in a society that saves money, so how can you buy a home if you’re savings account isn’t 5 figures or more? There’s a way, and we wanted to let you know you have options!

Orange County Down Payment Assistance Programs

A great resource to reach out to for housing grants and financial help is NeighborWorks Orange County. The NeighborWorks website lists lots of really great programs – here’s a flyer to check out just a few:

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For your convenience, income limits for each program are color coded at the bottom of this sheet. NeighborWorks is located in Orange, and they’re always coming up with a new program or a way to help you improve credit, budget, and your overall financial picture. Here’s a link to their homebuyer classes, given in various languages 🙂

In order to learn about everything this great nonprofit has, it’s best to attend a workshop. They also have an online or in house course you can take to get fully equipped to buy a home. It does cost a nominal fee, but you get your money back when you provide your closing statement within 12 months. How cool is that?!??

If you’re the type of person who wants to work with a charity FIRST, or if you just don’t have a down payment and you need help, reach out by texting 949-338-7408 or filling out the form below, and we’ll put you in touch with NeighborWorks so you can get on the affordable path to homeownership!

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Selling your home? 29 Essential Tips.

Posted on February 6, 2017. Filed under: Home Seller Tips, Informed Investor Alliance, Making Life Easier, OC Property Profiles, Orange County Real Estate | Tags: , , , , , |

screen-shot-2017-02-06-at-2-20-51-pmSelling a home in Southern California is no small job. There are hundreds of items that could be attended to – but which are most important?

Smart sellers get the inside scoop early – fill out the form below to receive a comprehensive report: 29 Essential Tips that Get Homes Sold FAST & for Top Dollar.

In addition, you’ll receive the latest Orange County Reports On Housing update. Find out out the market temperature, average days it takes to sell, and how many homes are on the market in your city.

A combined $59 value that could net you thousands is yours free by filling out the form below. Get this expert advice at your fingertips – guaranteed to your door within 7 days!

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Charming Home For Sale in Mission Viejo

Posted on February 3, 2017. Filed under: First Time Buyer help, Informed Investor Alliance, Making Life Easier, OC Property Profiles, Orange County Real Estate |

If you’re tired of ‘overdone’ properties that are completely outside your taste, then this Mission Viejo property for sale should be a breath of fresh air. With solid structure, but old decor, this is the perfect project for the buyer who wants a good deal and the opportunity to do their own upgrades. Priced at just $684,900 – it won’t linger long!

This traditional 2 story offers 3 beds, 2.5 baths, 2 car garage, and 1776 sq ft on a 5000 sq ft lot. All schools are rated 9 or 10, and it’s on a single loaded street walking distance to James Gilleran park.

Additional features include:

  • Jacuzzi
  • Wet bar
  • Fireplace
  • Master bath with separate tub & shower
  • Master balcony
  • Inside laundry room
  • Arched doorways
  • Downstairs newer tile
  • Recirculating hot water – it’s instant!
  • Wired for speakers in & outside, cable too
  • Air conditioning
  • Outdoor LED lights in front.
  • HUGE extra storage closet in office

You won’t find this home on the MLS, so beat the rush! For a private showing call or text Angie at 949-338-7408 or simply fill out the form below!

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Mission Viejo Single Level Gem for sale

Posted on January 21, 2017. Filed under: First Time Buyer help, Orange County Real Estate | Tags: , , , |

Mission Viejo is one of our favorite cities – super safe, great schools, shopping, & scenery! We’re happy to announce a new listing coming to the MLS soon for just $724,900. It’s single level, charmingly upgraded, and sits on an interior corner lot with RV parking.

The backyard is very private & provides a large covered patio with skylights & stone tile – perfect for a future California Room!  Boasting 4 beds, 2 spa-like baths, enormous eat-in kitchen, soaring ceilings, and oversize decorative tile – don’t miss out on this handsome home.

To schedule an earlybird showing for this classic beauty, just fill out the form below. More details and photos are available at http://www.24151ViaMadrugada.com

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Become an Automatic Millionaire Homeowner

Posted on November 29, 2016. Filed under: First Time Buyer help, Home Seller Tips, Informed Investor Alliance, Lenders & Loan info, Making Life Easier, Orange County CA Foreclosures, Orange County Real Estate, Orange County Short Sales | Tags: , , , , , , |

Ever wonder how people really come up in real estate? It doesn’t require a huge amount of capital, brains, or hard work. The process is surprisingly simple, and we’ll teach you the jist in just half an hour.

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The best thing about becoming a millionaire homeowner is that anyone can do it.

Learn How at Homeownership Day Jan 14th, 2017

We’ll teach you the simple process based off David Bach’s “Automatic Millionaire Homeowner” book in an easy, 1/2 hour session at Chapman University from 12:15 – 12:45pm.

This is a class for normal people who would like to do extraordinary things in real estate while maintaining their existing lifestyle, career, and family.

The Automatic Millionaire Homeowner is not a get-rich-quick scheme; everything is done on your individual timeline, and without a membership in some expensive group or school. The only money you spend will be on real estate itself. Simple concepts that once applied, will bring you huge returns regardless of where you own property. And the younger you have this knowledge and you start…the better.

Register below for this free event – space is limited!

ochfgraphicMore about Homeownership Day / OC Home Fair

This yearly event is a collaborative between Chapman University, Orange County Young Professionals Network, OC Register, and non-profits VAREP and NeighborWorks OC designed to bring you honest real estate information with no pressure or gimmicks.

There will be 4 different sessions, each with 5 classes to choose from. Attendees enjoy a ‘choose your own adventure’ style and pick the classes that interest them most. Instructors are all active experts in the industry volunteering their time to benefit our community. Visit www.OCHomeFair.com for the full class list and session times.

Where: Chapman University’s Beckman Hall 1 University Dr, Orange, CA 92866
When: January 14th, 2017 from 10am – 1pm
Cost: free

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Got an Ugly Duck Property to Sell?

Posted on October 26, 2016. Filed under: Home Seller Tips, Informed Investor Alliance, Making Life Easier, OC Property Profiles, Orange County CA Foreclosures, Orange County Real Estate |

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It’s common knowledge that you’ll get the most for a property when it’s upgraded, staged, and correctly marketed. But for some Orange County home sellers, this isn’t an option. Sometimes there was a problem insurance didn’t cover, sometimes the property was inherited and needs 40 years of updates, or other times there is a divorce or a death that requires a fast move. Whatever your case may be, there are buyers out there who want to exchange your ‘problem child’ for quick cash.

This week, we interviewed one of our investors to learn a little more about the types of property she targets. She told me “Angie, we buy other people’s problems.” Here’s a deeper look into those problem homes and how an investor or all-cash buyer may be your solution to avoid headaches.

Southern California Hoarder Homes

If you’ve got a hoarder home on your hands, definitely consider your time and cost to clean it out. The process can take weeks, even months, especially if you have an emotional connection to any of the items inside. On top of that… under all the clutter is probably some deferred maintenance waiting as well. Rather than going to market with today’s buyers who all like everything clean and new, it may be best to strike a deal with an investor who will take the home as-is.

The Family Property

You’ve had Thanksgiving & plenty of holiday parties here, and over the years your parents haven’t had any garage sales, and they have kept every memory packed away in the attic and 4+ bedrooms. Now it’s time to move them to a condo or assisted living facility, but what to do with all this STUFF?

It’s not a problem for an investor. She says:

“…We purchased a property earlier this year. It was from an agent who had a client that she knew the whole family, and the mom had to go into a home. The kids did not want to deal with all of the stuff in the house, they just came and took family photos and a few things. We bought it as she left it – full of her things. We donated belongings to charity and then proceeded with the work.

As a matter of fact, the last several we have bought have been similar situations – that the agent knew the family and they just wanted a quick cash sale. It made it easy for both sides to sell before the house ever hit the MLS.”

The Money Pit

Ever tried to be an investor and failed? Ran out of money, time, or resources before the flip was done? It happens, more than you may realize. Especially with all the flipping shows out there right now! If you’re ready to throw in the towel on problems with the city, or a red tagged, unfinished construction, you’ll probably NEED to find a cash buyer or investor. Lenders won’t typically loan on partially completed construction.

The Get Me Out NOW Divorce

Sometimes, you just want out. You have other things on your mind. You don’t want to deal with a buyer whining about repairs, or people traipsing through your home when you’re trying to pack up and move out. And you definitely don’t want to sit with your future in limbo waiting for the lender who promises the world… but delays at every corner. Nasty divorces are a perfect fit for a cash sale; we’ve all got a story on that one. Sometimes it’s best to cut your losses and move forward on a new path. Like now.

crazy_cat_lady_4The Residential Zoo

Ever walked into a home with too many animals? Barf. Ever try to sell a home with pet smells? Good luck! Homes that had a lot of animals living in them, that were not taken care of, can require a lot of time and attention to air out. Plus, you’ve got the unfortunate situations that have feces inches deep on every surface including walls…damage to doors and baseboards from scratching… definitely a candidate for the investor buyer.

The scenarios are endless, but for every home there is a buyer. It just may not be the traditional kind. If you’ve got a challenge on your hands, give the AskAngie team a call at 949-338-7408 or fill out the form below to schedule a consultation on the best way for you to sell without headaches.

 

 

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Orange County Solar – will it save me money?

Posted on October 21, 2016. Filed under: First Time Buyer help, Home Improvement Ideas, Home Seller Tips, Informed Investor Alliance, Making Life Easier, Orange County Home Improvement, Orange County Real Estate | Tags: , , , , |

solar-panelsWondering if you should add solar when you buy your home? It’s one of our most common questions, so let’s check into it! Today, we attended a solar seminar with Alan Issacs & GoSolar from our LeTip group to find out more on this popular subject.

The average monthly cost of electricity for a CA resident is $183/mo, or $2200/yr. On top of that, it’s constantly increasing, on an average of 5% per year. So if you think your bills are big now…just wait…

How does Solar work?

Solar panels convert sunlight into the same electric energy you get from the utility company. Materials consist of solar panels installed on your roof, and inverters. In many cases, you’ll still be connected to the grid, so you will have access to electricity if your panels don’t generate enough, and you will get a credit for the excess energy you generate – win win so far!

Solar Installation & Purchasing Tips:

  • Size your system to produce 80% of the energy you need, not 100%. You can always add panels later if you want to, as long as you are using a micro inverter instead of a string inverter.
  • If you buy solar (not lease) before Dec 31st 2021, you’ll receive a 30% federal tax credit
  • Just like homeownership, the really big savings comes over the long term; check out this 20 year projection graph:

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Interested in Going Green Now? Steps to Go Solar:

  1. Solar Energy Consultation
  2. Proposal
  3. Solar Site Assessment
  4. Contract
  5. HOA Approval (remember many HOA’s only meet once a month, and many times they require neighbor approval – plan in advance!)
  6. City Permit – the company you select for solar will usually pull this for you
  7. Installation – these work on EVERY type of roof, and typically takes 3 days
  8. Inspection
  9. Net Energy Metering (NEM) agreement
  10. Permission to Operate (PTO)

The entire process takes about 4-8 weeks, depending on weather, how many panels you have, and various other factors.

How Should I Pay For Solar?

It’s all about options – and there’s plenty. Some are by far better than others. Let’s explore them further:

  • Upfront – typically pays back within 5 years and offers a 30% tax credit
  • Consumer Energy Efficiency loan – also eligible for tax credit. This is also tied to you the owner, which will save headaches when you go to sell your Orange County home.
  • HELOC – you can use your current home equity to purchase by taking out a Home Equity Line of Credit
  • HERO / PACE loan – a secured loan where your credit is not even checked. Be careful of these options, it can scare buyers if you go to sell your home. If you KNOW you’re going to stay in your property until it’s paid off, then go for it. The interest rate is usually 8%; so it may be better for you to take out a HELOC if you have equity.
  • Lease / Power Purchase agreement – the worst option for payment, because you are not eligible for tax credit, it’s typically a TWENTY year agreement, and your lease payments typically increase annually (around 3%). This option can also make it difficult for you to sell your home.

If you’d like more info on Solar, feel free to reach out to 949-338-7408 or tweet @AngieWeeks, and we’d be happy to connect you with multiple people we know in the Solar industry!

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Tiny Homes & Cutting Edge Home Performance Monitoring 

Posted on September 23, 2016. Filed under: First Time Buyer help, Home Improvement Ideas, Home Seller Tips, Informed Investor Alliance, Making Life Easier, Orange County Home Improvement, Orange County Real Estate | Tags: , , , , , |

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Tiny Home owner / builder Corbett Lunsford

Good times at Orange County Association of Realtors today – we got to tour a tiny home & meet the builder! First cool point, the builder, Corbett, is a totally *normal* person, who has never built a home. He’s towed this tiny 7000 miles & it’s still in tact! Hopefully this inspires some of you readers who are interested to explore tiny builds further 😊 Check out the pics!

Tiny Terrors?

But wait. Isn’t it dangerous to try to build your own home? Well, builder homes aren’t as safe as you might think. Construction crews blow it all the time. A good build is about time & attention, you don’t have to be a rocket scientist. It’s ok if you don’t want to DIY, but read on for some tips about ensuring your existing home is safe for your family.

Your home is a system.

Everything is designed to work together. But does it? Is the symphony in tune? You get a heart monitor at the hospital, but what about a home monitor for your most important investment?

And hey – energy efficiency is all the rage – the government will give you a rebate for replacing your furnace or air conditioner with a higher performance model; plus you’ve heard about all the solar credits too. Who wouldn’t want lower bills & tax breaks?!

How do I know my home is safe & efficient?

You won’t know until you get an Energy Audit & do some home performance testing! Here’s your 4-3-2-1 on what you want to look for:

4 Elements – heat flow, airflow / pressure, moisture, air quality.

3 Recommendations – air sealing (control heat bleed), insulation, HVAC / mechanicals

2 Systems – enclosure, engine (anything that moves)

1 Goal – CONTROL

Thermal imaging can tell you so much about a home’s efficiency. If you’re building a home, buying a home, or selling a home, then consider doing a blower door test and an infared thermal photography scan. This will prove beyond a doubt your mission critical systems are functioning or failing. More tests to prove efficiency are:

  • Duct / air tightness testing
  • Zonal pressure testing
  • HVAC testing

Home Diagnostics with Corbett & Grace Lunsford will be on TV next year if you’d like more info on how to go CSI on a home! Want it sooner? Check out #TinyLab on social media.

Call the AskAngie Team at 949-338-7408 or tweet @angieweeks if you need a referral to do one of the tests mentioned – we want you safe & smiling in your home, whatever size it may be 🏡 😄 🌟

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Orange County 1031 Exchange & Other Investor Property Tax Shelters

Posted on September 14, 2016. Filed under: Informed Investor Alliance, Making Life Easier, Orange County Real Estate | Tags: , , , , , , , |

smart-investorGot investment property?

It’s surprising how many property investors we meet who aren’t familiar with 1031 Exchange. Since money doesn’t grow on trees, maybe we can save you some when you decide to sell – read on!

Recently Debbie Bannister with Exchange Resources spoke to our Real Estate Focus group with some 1031 Exchange tips. If you are wondering whether your property fits the mold for a 1031, here are some qualifying terms:

  • Must be an investment property, not a primary residence
  • Property you are exchanging for must be equal or greater value than net sales price
  • Exchange must be done by a qualified intermediary

What kind of properties can be included in a 1031 Exchange?

The properties must be ‘like kind’. Like kind is defined as any real property held for the productive use in a trade or business for investment purposes. Land can also qualify. 1031 properties cannot be for your personal use, but you can put your business in one, per the definition above :). Many investors also ask if the debt on the property counts toward the exchange. The answer is Yes, loan debt is included. If you don’t want to take on new debt, however, you have the option to pay cash as the down payment on your move up property. And if the property you’re purchasing needs work, you can also do an “improvement exchange”. Lots of options!

1031 Exchange Timelines

45 days after the close of your investment property, you must identify a property to buy that is of equal or greater value. If you can’t buy one of the properties you identify for the 1031 exchange, then your exchange is off even if you buy some other property; therefore this is a crucial step. You can identify up to 3 properties, so make sure not to put all your eggs in just one basket. Strategy: identify your favorite on the first day, then wait till day 40-45 to identify your backup options.
180 days to buy, close, and be completely done.

1031timeline

Cashing out funds with a 1031 Exchange

In some situations you may not want loan debt, so a partial exchange is an option. Or maybe you want cash. This is also an option, but talk to your CPA about how much cash you should keep because you will be taxed on it.

Tax intelligent ways to get completely OUT of your real estate investments

Bruce Jones our tax strategist talked to this extent, and you’ve got some options:

  • Charitable property
  • Deferred sales trust (don’t do it – none of our experts recommend this!)
  • Structured sale
  • Traditional installment sale (aka seller carry back)

Remember the IRS is not your enemy, lack of knowledge is.

Bruce suggested to consider coupling a monetized loan with an installment sale. You still get a tax free chunk of change at close of escrow, and you can defer your taxes for 30 years. It’s kinda complicated, so here’s a pic to help!

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In case you’re on a mobile & it’s hard to see what’s in the graphic above, here’s the breakdown:

You’ll do a interest only 30 year installment sale:
Seller –(installment sale)–> Dealer –(resale on original terms)—> Final buyer

then, with a Separate investment business loan:
Lender –(loan typically 95% of net sale proceeds)–> Seller –(invests)–> $$$

followed by the Lender’s payment processing and loan guarantee system:
Dealer –(automatic installment payments)–> Payment Processor –(single source limited recourse loan–> Lender

Bruce showed us example after example of SoCal & Orange County property investors he has helped to save hundreds of thousands of dollars. Some even millions, so it’s worth a consultation with him if you decide to cash out all or even some of your real estate portfolio. After all, property investments aren’t all about how much you ‘make’, they are really about how much you get to keep. He’s been utilizing this strategy for almost 20 years and never ran into a problem 🙂

If you’d like a personal introduction to any of our tax experts, Real Estate Focus group consultants, or a list of investment opportunities, just fill out the form below or call / text Angie at 949-338-7408, & we’d be happy to assist!

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Resort Living All Year Round in HB

Posted on March 3, 2016. Filed under: First Time Buyer help, OC Property Profiles, Orange County Real Estate | Tags: , , , , , |

Affordable Huntington Beach, CA Condo

IMG_1063Looking for your first place or a beach close investment property?  Look no further – 5096 Tortuga #104 is prefect for a college student, first time buyer, bachelor / bachelorette, snowbird, or even investor since there’s great rental potential! Located just over a mile from the beach, the possibilities of sun & fun are endless.

 

Cabo del Mar Community condos

IMG_1048With a long list of amenities that include a clubhouse, pool, spa, sauna, tennis courts, racquetball courts, gated parking, and a large greenbelt area that over looks the wetlands, Cabo del Mar lets you indulge. Plus being situated near shopping, restaurants, and dog beach offers such a convenient lifestyle. If you like nature, you’re just moments to the Bolsa Chica wetlands and the sand of Huntington’s world famous beaches. It’s easy to see why people flock to Huntington Beach!

Cabo Del Mar has parking galore, with underground subterranean parking spots for residents and street level parking for guests, you’ll always be sure to have close parking to your condo. Unlike most studios, 104 has an extra level of privacy / separation thanks to the plantation style shutters, ceiling added soundproofing, and quiet location in the complex. On cool beach nights sit IMG_1045in front of the cozy gas fireplace to warm up and relax.

5096 Tortuga is a must see, a solid investment priced at just $284,999 this unit won’t last long! To schedule a private viewing call us, The AskAngie Team at 949-338-7408, fill out the form below, or email us at Angie@AskAngie.com.

 

 

 

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Charming Homes in Palm Beach Park, San Clemente

Posted on February 26, 2016. Filed under: OC Property Profiles, Orange County Real Estate, Senior Communities | Tags: , , , , , , , , |

55+ Oasis with Private Beach

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Palm Beach Park Private Beach

Droves of seniors are settling in the seaside community of Palm Beach Park in San Clemente, CA – a manufactured home development with it’s own tranquil beach oasis. This quiet retirement community is the perfect place to slow down, unwind, and just be one with the sunsets and ocean. Residents are just across the street from an exclusive private beach that is almost 2 acres, and the best part is they don’t have to pay 2 million dollars to get whitewater views and a walk to the sand.

There are currently 10+ models to choose from, varying in size and price from 100-500K. Truly, there is a home for every senior in this San Clemente treasure. Some coaches are fully upgraded, and others you can add your own personal touches to make it your own beach oasis!

Unparalleled Senior Living

Palm Beach View 1

View of the Clubhouse and pool

Luxurious amenities at the clubhouse include a full kitchen and bar, a library, and a game room with shuffle board. Also offered is RV parking, a car wash on site, and the salt water pool that is heated all year round. On the privately owned beach you can enjoy the volleyball court, picnic tables, BBQ area, and the bonfire pits! Palm Beach Park is true retirement living with wonderful neighbors, amazing whitewater ocean views, and breathtaking sunsets!

“Walking down to the private beach and the different social events at the clubhouse are some of my favorite memories here at the park” JoAnn Cota, a homeowner, recently told us. “We love coming down from Buellton to visit the beach.” Another resident, Tom Mallett, states “The shimmering sunsets over Catalina Island are a true delight”.

The AskAngie Team has two listings, 407 and 401 Ebb Tide Drive currently available for showings. Another listing on Bay will be hitting the market soon.

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Sparkling Ocean View from 407 Ebb Tide

Stop by and check out what Palm Beach Park has to offer on Sunday, March 6th from 12-3PM. Multiple homes will have open houses – you can tour many homes in one day and find the right fit for you!

Please join us on Sunday, March 6 from 12-3PM if you have any questions or would like a personal tour feel free to call us on our toll free number at 877-230-3211 or email us at Angie@AskAngie.com.We look forward to seeing you by the ocean!!

Photo credit: Antis Orange County Photography

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Orange County Real Estate Forecast for 2016

Posted on February 9, 2016. Filed under: First Time Buyer help, Home Seller Tips, Informed Investor Alliance, Orange County Real Estate | Tags: , , , , |

Had a great afternoon today listening to expert Gary Watt’s predictions for OC’s real estate market this year. Last year, we had a modest appreciation of 4.8%. Real people scenario: If you own a 500K condo, it’s now worth 524K 🙂 What’s in store for this year?

OC Inventory Predictions

real estate forecastInventory should stay around 6500 homes, and appreciation is expected to be 2-3%. If our inventory goes up to 7500 homes, then we’ll have flat appreciation. If everyone freaks out because the election candidates suck and list their home, then a negative 2% is expected (if inventory rises over 7500).

New home sales should continue to decline (they were down last year), and high end and single family homes should decline. Not in overall price, just in volume, mostly due to affordability.

Rates aren’t expected to go much above 4%. Historically, the Feds have always lowered interest rates in an election year, and this year it’s different…so we have to see if that affects our market.

Buyer Trends in Orange County

First time buyers are 28% of our market, the main reason it’s lower than the rest of the country is affordability. Qualifying for homes is stricter, which is also a factor. And let’s not forget about student debt.

As a nation, the average is 63.7% for homeownership. Only 49.1% of Orange County residents are homeowners; our county is one of the hardest to buy in.

What about the younger buyers? 20% of Millennials are currently homeowners, but we’re seeing a commitment issue with about 10%, who don’t even have ‘buying a home’ on their radar.

Chinese & foreign buyers are still a force to be reckoned with. They like to spend their cash here.

OC Rental Activity

Our rental market is on fire, and will continue to be. The rental gap is about $1000/mo. Many residents are taking a short term mindset of saving the extra monthly spend instead of a long term equity building mindset. There are also many who are still rebuilding credit from foreclosure or short sale, who will remain renting until affordability and credit scores increase.

Overall, we should have another good year in 2016, as long as we don’t get an El Nino of inventory! If you are considering listing your home, the sooner the better, because our busy season starts to slow after May. Call or text Angie at 949-338-7408 to have our team crunch numbers and get a spreadsheet of your potential profit!

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    Orange County, CA Real Estate for hip first-time buyers and investors. Plus, fun things to know and do in OC.

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