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There are what will seem like over 1,000 details between “I think it’s time to move” and “We’re finally unpacked!”
I’ll help you with more of them than any other Realtor.

What are you getting when …

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Home Sales Are Back On The Rise After A 2-Month Pullback
September 8, 2010 – 5:48 AM | Comments Off

Pending Home Sales January 2009-July 2010Just one week after reports of Existing Home Sales and New Home Sales plunging, the housing market is signaling that autumn may fare better than did summer.

The number of homes under contract to sell rose 5 percent in July.

The data comes from the July Pending Home Sales Index, as published by the National Association of Realtors®. By definition, a “pending home sales” is a home that is sold, but not yet closed.

Historically, 80% of such homes close within 60 days which makes the Pending Home Sales Index an excellent, forward-looking indicator for the real estate market.

Indeed, the nationwide drop in home sales this summer was foreshadowed by the Pending Home Sales report.  The index dropped 30 percent in May. Then, two months later in July, it was shown that Existing Home Sales volume dropped 29 percent.

That’s a strong correlation.

Now, to be fair, the July Pending Home Sales Index is still relatively low; the second-lowest on record and well below last year’s numbers. But, the tick higher last month shows how housing may be stronger than than what the headlines report.

It appears that buyers took advantage of rising inventory, cheap financing, and stagnant prices, and pushed the market forward. We should expect similarly promising numbers when September’s Existing Home Sales data is released.

The importance of doing underground storage tank (UST’s) inspections for homes in San Mateo County
August 24, 2010 – 12:35 PM | Comments Off
The importance of doing underground storage tank (UST’s) inspections  for homes in San Mateo County

The importance of doing underground storage tank (UST’s)
inspections  for homes in San Mateo County
I had the “interesting” experience in 2005 (prior to my becoming a licensed agent) of learning first hand the process behind removing …

California High Speed Rail Project Update as provided by the City of Burlingame; Please contact state/fed reps to voice concerns
August 20, 2010 – 8:38 AM | Comments Off
California High Speed Rail Project Update as provided by the City of Burlingame; Please contact state/fed reps to voice concerns

Here’s the latest update as provided by the City of Burlingame.  If you have concerns about this project or if you just want to stay in the loop, get involved by attending community meetings in …

New Homes Sales Gain in June, But Gains Are Relative
July 27, 2010 – 5:49 AM | Comments Off
New Homes Sales Gain in June, But Gains Are Relative

June’s New Home Sales data is a major improvement over May, but gains are relative. It’s possible that the true “new home market” may be softer than the statistics suggest.

Related posts:

  1. New Homes Sales Were Strong in March, But Not As Strong As The News Would Have You Believe
  2. Homeowners Rejoice! New Homes Sales Data Is Weak.
  3. Pending Homes Sales Gain For The 7th Straight Month
West Portal, SF Market Trends as of July 23, 2010
July 23, 2010 – 1:45 PM | One Comment
West Portal, SF Market Trends as of July 23, 2010

West Portal, SF Market Trends as of July 23, 2010
If you have a West Portal home that you are thinking about selling now may be the perfect time.  There is solid buyer demand, the …

Top Green Gardening Tips
July 22, 2010 – 2:42 PM | Comments Off
Top Green Gardening Tips

Looking to go green, but unsure of where to take your first step? Try the greenest spot of your home: your yard. Green gardening is a great starting point for any journey toward a more earth-friendly lifestyle. It’s easy to get started, it’s fun, and changing how you garden in even small ways can [...]

Related posts:

  1. Eight Quick Tips for Living Green
  2. Beautiful on the Outside
  3. What a great eco-friendly, affordable idea! ZippGo: Green, Plastic moving boxes
Eight Quick Tips for Living Green
July 20, 2010 – 2:15 PM | Comments Off
Eight Quick Tips for Living Green

Today, living green isn’t just a lifestyle choice; it makes solid financial sense. As home energy costs increase, homeowners are seeking simple and smart ways to save energy and consequently save money, too. Trying to create a more environmentally sound household doesn’t have to start with taking out a massive loan in order to [...]

Related posts:

  1. Planning For A “Quick Close”? Now May Not Be A Good Time.
  2. The Cost Of Living Includes The Cost Of Gas And Food (And May Get More Expensive Through The Winter)
  3. Common-Sense Tips To Help Your Home Sell Quickly
Changes Coming in August to SFAR MLS Map Including renaming of S.F. neighborhoods
July 16, 2010 – 12:12 PM | Comments Off
Changes Coming in August to SFAR MLS Map Including renaming of S.F. neighborhoods

It’s taken some time but the San Francisco Association of Realtors is updating the S.F. district map!

Now, it won’t be all inclusive of the approximate 100+ names the locals have given (officially & unofficially) but it’s a start!

The Fed’s June Minutes Keep Mortgage Rates In Rally-Mode
July 16, 2010 – 5:50 AM | Comments Off
The Fed’s June Minutes Keep Mortgage Rates In Rally-Mode

At 7,333 words, the June Fed Minutes is the unabridged version of the more well-known, post-meeting press release. The corresponding press release was just 360 words. It turns out, the Fed’s words are doing wonders for mortgage rates.

Related posts:

  1. The Fed’s April Minutes Push Mortgage Rates Even Lower
  2. How The “Fed Minutes” Can Change Mortgage Rates And Home Affordability
  3. Mortgage Rates Spike On The Federal Reserve’s January 2010 Meeting Minutes
Fantastic! At long last San Mateo County communities will have single stream recycling available!
July 6, 2010 – 9:21 AM | Comments Off
Fantastic!  At long last San Mateo County communities will have single stream recycling available!

Great news! Recology will be the new service provider for garbage, recycling and compost pick up for San Mateo County residents. Under the current service, pick up of recyclables happens bi-monthly which means multiple bins fill up & sit at the side of our house. Residents also have to sort paper from metals/plastics and pick up of compostable food waste is not a provided service.

High Speed Rail & Eminent Domain: What do you stand to lose? Burlingame community meeting July 14th
July 5, 2010 – 8:27 AM | Comments Off
High Speed Rail & Eminent Domain: What do you stand to lose?  Burlingame community meeting July 14th

The Community Coalition on High Speed Rail (CC-HSR) will present an informational program on High Speed Rail and Eminent Domain. You’re invited! As many of you know, the California High Speed Rail Authority is proposing to build an elevated structure between San Jose and San Francisco along the present Caltrain corridor. If that proposal comes to pass (and it’s not a “done deal” yet, and CC-HSR and other groups are fighting it), the Authority will need to take property from private parties along portions of the corridor. Some takings will be permanent but others will be for construction purposes only. In either event, these takings will have a significant impact on Peninsula homes and businesses.

Protected: Rental Application
June 25, 2010 – 3:43 PM | Comments Off

There is no excerpt because this is a protected post.

New Lead Renovation, Repair and Painting Rule in Effect April 22, 2010
June 22, 2010 – 8:20 AM | Comments Off
New Lead Renovation, Repair and Painting Rule in Effect April 22, 2010

New Lead Renovation, Repair and Painting Rule in Effect April 22, 2010
If you own a pre-1978 home, here is new legislation which may impact your next renovation project.

As provided by SFAR:
The Federal Lead-Based Paint …

Shopping And Paying Bills Online? Here’s Methods To Protect Your Online Financial Identity
June 15, 2010 – 5:50 AM | Comments Off
Shopping And Paying Bills Online? Here’s Methods To Protect Your Online Financial Identity

In May 2010, Retail Sales at non-store retailers — a category that includes Amazon and eBay — topped $29 billion, up 16 percent from May 2009. Clearly, Americans are doing an increasing amount of shopping online. But how well are we protecting our identities?

Related posts:

  1. VIDEO : How Do I Prioritize Paying Monthly Bills Versus Saving For Retirement?
  2. Why Medical Bills Are More Dangerous To Homeowners Than ARMs
  3. So, How Much Is Starbucks Costing You Each Year?
Action Alert – Update on Condo Bypass for TIC owners in S.F.
June 14, 2010 – 8:44 AM | Comments Off
Action Alert – Update on Condo Bypass for TIC owners in S.F.

Action Alert – Condo Bypass for TIC owners in S.F.

Here’s the scoop for S.F. homeowners as provided by Plan C:
We have good news to report regarding the proposed one time “condo bypass” for TIC owners, …

FHA Mortgage Insurance Premiums Approved To Triple In Cost
June 11, 2010 – 5:49 AM | 2 Comments
FHA Mortgage Insurance Premiums Approved To Triple In Cost

In a near-unanimous vote, the House of Representatives gave the FHA power to raise the monthly mortgage insurance premiums it charges to its borrowers.

Related posts:

  1. Separating FHA Fact From Fiction : Mortgage Insurance Premiums
  2. Get Your FHA Mortgage Application Started — Fees Increase 1/2 Percent Starting Monday, April 5, 2010
  3. The Rising Cost Of A Small Downpayment
What a great eco-friendly, affordable idea! ZippGo: Green, Plastic moving boxes
June 9, 2010 – 10:31 AM | One Comment
What a great eco-friendly, affordable idea!  ZippGo: Green, Plastic moving boxes

What a great eco-friendly, affordable idea!  ZippGo: Green, Plastic moving boxes

In my internet meandering this morning I came across this great eco-friendly, affordable moving resource:  ZippGo
Here’s their scoop:

Moving is complicated and wasteful – we …

Plug/video for my new listing: Stylish city view condo for sale at The Hayes!
June 5, 2010 – 10:56 AM | Comments Off
Plug/video for my new listing: Stylish city view condo for sale at The Hayes!

I love, love, love my Mac!!!  Check out my first video created via iMovie & pics uploaded from iPhoto.  Super easy; still needs some tweaking.  What do you think?
I sense a pet video is next …

Pending Home Sales Data Shows Great Deals On Homes Are Getting Harder To Find
June 4, 2010 – 7:00 AM | Comments Off
Pending Home Sales Data Shows Great Deals On Homes Are Getting Harder To Find

April marks the third straight month that pending home sales are up and today’s buyers should take note. This is because, according to the National Association of Realtors®, 80% of homes under contract close within 60 days.

Related posts:

  1. Pending Home Sales Shows That More Buyers May Be Shopping For Homes Than You Thought
  2. Pending Home Sales Data Forecasts Higher Home Values Next Month
  3. Pending Home Sales Soar In February, As Expected. Buyers Are Everywhere.
The Right Way To Take A Cash Gift For Downpayment
May 27, 2010 – 8:55 AM | Comments Off
The Right Way To Take A Cash Gift For Downpayment

As lenders tighten mortgage guidelines, minimum downpayment requirements are increasing. It’s leading to an increase in the number of buyers accepting cash gifts from family. There’s a right and wrong way to accept a gift.

Related posts:

  1. How To Receive A Cash Gift For Downpayment
  2. The Proper Way To Give And Receive Gifts For Downpayments
  3. FHA Bans Seller-Financed Downpayment Assistance Programs
Understanding Wills and Trusts
May 26, 2010 – 3:28 PM | Comments Off
Understanding Wills and Trusts

As provided by Leonard Spoto of Asset Exchange Company :
Many of our 1031 Exchange clients hold title to their investment property in a Trust.  To understand why, it may make sense to review the basic …

San Francisco Homeowners Have New Way to Pay for Going Green
May 24, 2010 – 4:01 PM | Comments Off
San Francisco Homeowners Have New Way to Pay for Going Green

As provided by SFAR:
San Francisco homeowners have a new way of paying for solar panels, energy-efficient appliances and low-flow toilets.
A new city-run program, GreenFinanceSF, will give San Franciscans the money to pay for such projects …

No More State Tax on Forgiven Debt as of SB 401 approved April, 2010
May 24, 2010 – 10:52 AM | Comments Off
No More State Tax on Forgiven Debt as of SB 401 approved  April, 2010

Details as provided by SFAR:
Distressed homeowners no longer have to pay California state income tax on debt forgiven in a short sale, foreclosure, or loan modification.
Enacted into law on Monday (April 12, 2010), Senate Bill …

WEEKLY HOT RATES for the week ending 5/18/2010 as provided by Guarantee Mortgage
May 24, 2010 – 9:42 AM | Comments Off
WEEKLY HOT RATES for the week ending 5/18/2010 as provided by Guarantee Mortgage

WEEKLY HOT RATES for the week ending 5/18/2010 as provided by Guarantee Mortgage

30 Yr Fixed Conforming to $417K           4.625%
“1.000″ POINTS APR = 4.820%
30 Yr Fixed Jumbo to $729,750 4.750%
“1.000″ POINTS APR= 5.080%
30 Year …

Why hiring a mortgage broker vs. working with a direct lender makes sense in today’s market
May 20, 2010 – 1:44 PM | 2 Comments
Why hiring a mortgage broker vs. working with a direct lender makes sense in today’s market

Why hiring a mortgage broker vs. working with a direct lender makes sense in today’s market!

As provided by the fine folks at Guarantee Mortgage (my comments are in red):

1.  Mortgage Brokers are trained to …

Details of the March 2010 California Tax Credit for New Home / First-Time Buyers
May 20, 2010 – 12:08 PM | Comments Off
Details of the March 2010 California Tax Credit for New Home / First-Time Buyers

On March 25, 2010 California approved a new $10,000 First-Time Homebuyer tax credit for purchases that close escrow on or after May 1, 2010. (Cal. Rev. & Tax Code § 17059.1)
For full details …

CAR-Sponsored Bill to Protect Borrowers from Lenders—Call Your State Senator Today
May 19, 2010 – 9:35 AM | Comments Off
CAR-Sponsored Bill to Protect Borrowers from Lenders—Call Your State Senator Today

CAR-Sponsored Bill to Protect Borrowers from Lenders—Call Your State Senator Today
As shared by SFAR:

The California Association of REALTORS® (CAR) is sponsoring SB 1178 (Corbett) to extend anti-deficiency protection to homeowners who had refinanced from “purchase …

Median Sales Price Continues Its Upward Trend In San Francisco’s Housing Market
May 19, 2010 – 8:05 AM | Comments Off
Median Sales Price Continues Its Upward Trend In San Francisco’s Housing Market

Median Sales Price Continues Its Upward Trend
In San Francisco’s Housing Market

Here’s the scoop as provided by SFAR:

SAN FRANCISCO, CA, May 17, 2010 – Healthy sales activity, driven by low mortgage rates, tax incentives, and attractive …

San Bruno, CA: condo market trends report week of 5/18/10
May 18, 2010 – 8:32 AM | Comments Off
San Bruno, CA: condo market trends report week of 5/18/10

When I’m working with buyers or sellers, I run market trend reports for both the city/community and the specific neighborhood (if there is enough data) in addition to checking comps.  It’s important to keep in …

Your Mortgage Approval Isn’t Final Until It’s Funded
May 17, 2010 – 11:55 AM | Comments Off
Your Mortgage Approval Isn’t Final Until It’s Funded

A mortgage approval is never final until it’s funded. A host of things can “go wrong” while your home loan is underway. Some are in your control, many more are not. And just being aware of some potential pitfalls could help save your loan down the road, and your peace of mind today.

Related posts:

  1. Did You Know : The Lifespan Of A Mortgage Approval
  2. It’s Time To Re-Approve Your Pre-Approval
  3. 6 Things To Avoid While Waiting For A Mortgage Approval
What should I expect from my insurance agent/agency when I buy a new home?
May 14, 2010 – 2:00 PM | One Comment
What should I expect from my insurance agent/agency when I buy a new home?

Insurance is a part of your home closing process. So, outside of being sure that you have an agent that cares about your purchase and protection, offers a reasonable rate and appropriate coverage, you want to make sure that there will be no hiccups in your closing process!
Some insurance companies have specific issues with [...]

Related posts:

  1. What Should I Expect from My Lender and My Real Estate Agent’s Relationship?
  2. What are my options with Home Owners Insurance and how do I figure out what I need?
  3. The Difference between Homeowners and Landlord Insurance