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Blog Archives: August 2016

Electronic Gopher Repellers and 4 Other Home Gizmos You Never Thought You Needed

August 31, 2016
As a homeowner, thinking outside the box, gadget-wise, can lead you to gizmos that solve your problems – even ones you didn’t know you had in more humane, sustainable, energy-efficient ways than ever before. Read on to find out about five such inventions. It’s Humane!: Solar-Powered Gopher Repellent If you ever have a problem with rodents like gophers, moles, voles or shrews intruding on your lawn, look no further. This humane repellent doesn’t hurt anyone (people or animals), it simply emits a high-pitched sound at regular intervals to ...

Foundation Problems? Here’s What to Do If You’re Worried About Your Home’s Foundation

August 30, 2016
Like in a relationship, the foundation of a house is integral, and must be strong. There are many reasons why a house’s foundation might crack or shift including temperature variances in the soil surrounding it, since earth expands in heat and contracts in cold. But whatever the reason, there are certain steps to follow when addressing concerns about your house’s foundation. Prevent The Problem, If Possible First, whenever possible act to prevent problems before they arise. Make it a habit to check for foundational stress by taking a walk ...

Tuesday Tour Sheet for August 30, 2016

August 29, 2016
Tuesday tour (aka Broker’s Tour) is not just for brokers anymore – the public is invited and welcome to attend. In fact, it’s one of SF’s best kept real estate secrets. Many of the properties on the tour are open for the first time. For serious buyers, this is a great opportunity to get a sneak peek before the weekend crowds. Plus, many of the open houses are catered – BONUS! Click HERE for a full schedule. I go out just about every week to scope out what’s hot and what’s not, and report back to my clients. For help with San Francisco ...

What’s Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week – August 29, 2016

August 29, 2016
Last week’s economic reports included readings on new and existing home sales, a speech by Fed Chair Janet Yellen, and a report on consumer sentiment. Weekly reports on mortgage rates and new jobless claims were also released. New Home Sales Rise in July as Pre-Owned Home Sales Fall Sales of new homes jumped in July to a seasonally-adjusted annual rate of 654,000 sales, which surpassed expectations of 579,000 sales and June’s downwardly-revised reading of 582,000 sales. This was the highest reading for new home sales since 2008 and ...

Can You Get a Mortgage after a Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Discharge? Yes – But You’ll Have to Wait

August 26, 2016
There was a time when it was possible to acquire a mortgage shortly after filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, but with the shifts in the financial sector, the timeline on such a mortgage approval has changed in recent years. If you’re currently undergoing a Chapter 7 bankruptcy and are wondering how this will impact home ownership, here are the basics on this type of bankruptcy and what it may mean for you. What Is Chapter 7? While a Chapter 13 bankruptcy is the kind of financial situation that requires debt repayment, Chapter 7 is different ...

3 Different Types of Loan That Will Negatively Impact Your Ability to Get a Mortgage

August 25, 2016
A good credit rating is built on a number of financial factors including paying your bills on time and the length of your credit history, but loans can also be a source of bolstering your credit score in a positive way. While this means that loans can actually be a good thing, there are also the kinds of loans that can have a damaging impact on acquiring a mortgage. If you’ll soon be pursuing your own home purchase, here are some loans that may have a negative impact. Borrowing For Education When you are young, student loans are an ideal ...

NAHB: Builder Sentiment Improves in August

August 24, 2016
According to the National Association of Home Builders, August home builder sentiment met analyst expectations and rose by two points to a reading of 60; July’s reading was revised downward to 58. Two out of three components used in calculating the Home Builder Index were higher. Builder sentiment concerning current housing conditions rose two points to 65. Builders were also more confident about housing market conditions within the next six months; August’s reading was one point higher at 56. Builders were less confident about buyer traffic ...

Pocket the Profits: The Secrets to Selling Your Home above the Asking Price

August 23, 2016
We all want to sell our homes at above asking price, but what is it that makes a seller succeed at this? Here’s our expert advice on how you can sell your home above the asking price. Ask For Less You may be surprised, but pricing your home lower than market value can have an extremely positive effect on the offers you receive. This is because a low-priced listing will stand out and will draw more attention, which boosts your chance of a bidding war. By attracting more buyers to come and look at your home, you will find more buyers who are ...

August Market Report: Shift Happens

August 22, 2016
At last week’s Keller Williams Mega Camp in Austin, Texas, Co-Founder and Chairman Gary Keller focused heavily on the Shift that is beginning in the real estate market and how sellers, buyers and agents must be preparing for it. What’s the Shift? It’s the inevitable cyclicality of the real estate sales market. It is the constant tide flowing from a sellers market to a balanced market to a buyers market to a balanced market and back to a sellers market. In San Francisco and the Bay Area, we have been in a strong sellers market for the past ...

Tuesday Tour Sheet for August 23, 2016

August 22, 2016
Tuesday tour (aka Broker’s Tour) is not just for brokers anymore – the public is invited and welcome to attend. In fact, it’s one of SF’s best kept real estate secrets. Many of the properties on the tour are open for the first time. For serious buyers, this is a great opportunity to get a sneak peek before the weekend crowds. Plus, many of the open houses are catered – BONUS! Click HERE for a full schedule. I go out just about every week to scope out what’s hot and what’s not, and report back to my clients. For help with San Francisco ...

What’s Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week – August 22, 2016

August 22, 2016
Last week’s economic news included the NAHB Housing Market Index, Commerce Department releases on housing starts and building permits issued. Weekly reports on mortgage rates and new jobless claims were also released. Shortages of available single-family homes have driven up home prices and increased competition among homebuyers; short inventories of homes for sale are affecting affordability in many areas, although buyers seem motivated by lower mortgage rates and some easing of mortgage requirements. Analysts have repeatedly said that the ...

Three Key Points to Remember When Investing in a Cottage or Waterfront Getaway

August 19, 2016
If you’re looking to invest in a cottage or waterfront getaway, there are three key things to keep in mind throughout your search. How’s The House? Even if the lake is the highlight of a property you’re considering, it is important to make sure that the home is equally as great as the beautiful body of water it borders. How’s its orientation? Is it built on the ideal angle to take full advantage of the sun? Does the deck or large windows face another house directly? The orientation is an important factor to consider as it can make or break ...

Need a DIY Summer Project? How to Paint Your Home’s Exterior in a Weekend or Two

August 18, 2016
If you want something hands-on to do this summer, look no further than the outside of your house. There are many reasons to refresh the paint job on your house, including increased protection against weathering, and increased curb appeal. Whatever your reason, read on to learn just what you’ll need, and need to do, to paint your home’s exterior. What You’ll Need: Materials, Tools, Protection A DIY paint job is easily doable, and costs only as much as the materials, tools and protection you need. Those materials include the paint itself, the ...

Thinking about a ‘Fixer Upper’? Understanding the Balance Between Purchase and Reno Costs

August 17, 2016
Fixer uppers can come with huge price benefits and opportunity, as well as problems. Make sure you understand what you’re getting yourself into before you purchase a home that needs significant restoration. Carefully Calculate Do the math very carefully before jumping in. Add up the expected renovation costs based on a thorough evaluation of the property. As some of the expected costs will lie within a grey area, it is important that you base your estimation on the higher end of the price range. Be sure to account for all materials and ...

Buying a Home This Summer? Use These Four Tips to Uncover Hidden Flaws and Issues

August 16, 2016
In a hot market it’s easy to be blinded by the competition and succumb to the pressure to make an offer on a home before you’ve adequately assessed it. If you’re looking to buy a home this summer, use these four tips to uncover hidden flaws before you put your offer in. 1) Hire A Pro One of the most reliable ways to identify potential and existing problems within a property is to hire a professional home inspector to evaluate it. Home inspectors are trained to find issues that the average person may overlook, which can save you from putting ...

Tuesday Tour Sheet for August 16, 2016

August 15, 2016
Tuesday tour (aka Broker’s Tour) is not just for brokers anymore – the public is invited and welcome to attend. In fact, it’s one of SF’s best kept real estate secrets. Many of the properties on the tour are open for the first time. For serious buyers, this is a great opportunity to get a sneak peek before the weekend crowds. Plus, many of the open houses are catered – BONUS! Click HERE for a full schedule. I go out just about every week to scope out what’s hot and what’s not, and report back to my clients. For help with San Francisco ...

What’s Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week – August 15, 2016

August 15, 2016
Last week’s economic news included reports on job openings, retail sales and recurring reports on mortgage rates and new jobless claims. Job openings and hiring increased, which provided further evidence of stronger economic conditions. Retail sales were flat in July, new unemployment claims dropped and mortgage rates changed little. Labor Reports Suggest Stronger Economic Trends The Labor Department reported more job openings in June with 5.60 openings as compared to 5.50 million job openings in May. According to the Job Openings and Labor ...

3 Smart Home Gadgets That Are Worth the Investment

August 12, 2016
It’s no secret that high-tech homes can provide a more effortless living experience while also being just really, really cool. If you’re looking to up-the-ante and introduce high-tech gadgets into your home, check out our top three smart-home suggestions: 1. Robotic Vacuum Cleaner Robotic vacuum cleaners are one of our favorite high-tech toys as they can alleviate a significant portion of the burden of your regular household chores. They’re even more beneficial considering the fact that they can also make your home much more comfortable ...

4 Tips For Negotiating a Better Rental Agreement

August 11, 2016
Renting is hard. It’s easy to get lost in the length and language of rental agreements, but it’s important not to get discouraged when that happens. Rental agreements are fundamental documents that lay out the details of your tenancy, so when you’re ready to negotiate their terms, give them the attention they deserve with the help of these tips. Research the Property Like prepping for a job interview, make sure you know about the property you’re negotiating. Research the market so you know a reasonable price to ask for (and to expect). Read ...

5 Tips to Make Moving With Kids Easier

August 10, 2016
Sometimes a move is unavoidable, regardless of how much you or your kids’ would rather stay in your current home. If your young ones are not looking forward to a change in scenery, here are a few tips to help them make a smoother transition into their new home. 1. Involve Them Involving your children in the moving process will not only help them to better understand the move, it will also make them feel as though they are more in control of the situation. By taking them to open houses they’ll become familiar with the neighborhoods you’re ...

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