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House inventory: supply low – demand high

House inventory: supply low – demand high

By, Sandy Flores Broker

Low inventory numbers have entry-level buyers scrambling as empty nesters are reluctant to sell.

Home inventory in the U.S. has dropped to its lowest levels since 1999 according to Trulia.com, a San Francisco-based real estate research site.  Even though the U.S. has seen more than three years of a booming seller’s market for housing, there are plenty of Americans who are reluctant to sell their homes for a very simple reason: Where are they going to live?

The supply numbers are down 5.8% from a year ago and have declined year-over-year for the past 14 months. That compares to a more typical supply of 6 months in a healthy market, according to Trulia.Not only does the low housing inventory mean a bidding war for buyers, but sellers who may want to move to a smaller home and stay in the same market are quite often stuck because of the rise in prices for smaller homes that are being fought over by both first-time buyers and downsizing empty-nesters

“Although buying a home in a strong seller’s market can present lot of challenges, it is possible to secure a place you’ll love”  Sandy Flores Broker, Leading your way Home!

7 Reasons why you need a realtor when buying or selling a home

7 Reasons why you need a realtor when buying or selling a home

By, Sandy Flores Broker,

If you think hiring an agent when trying out a home sale or purchase is old news. it’s not, 88% of home buyers still purchase homes via real estate agents. True, the existence of home buying and selling websites, 1% commission sales and home buying and selling apps has made it considerable easy to go about a home sale or purchase yourself and save the realtor commissions that you have to surrender. But, the 88% of home buyers couldn’t be wrong, and here are seven reasons why you need a realtor when buying or selling a home.

  1. GOING SOLO COULD BE COSTLY

Although you may be attracted by the promise of “zero real estate commission” that going solo with your real estate deals command. It could actually turn out to be more costly. Stats prove that FSBO sellers sell their house for $30,000 less than what it’s really worth. Moreover, a random real estate buyer doesn’t have the negotiating prowess that an agent possesses.

  1. GET SUITABLE ADVICE

You might find yourself in any unforeseen situation when buying or selling a home. It’s your agent’s responsibility to give advice suited to you when you’re either buying or selling a home. The reason why you need a realtor in this case is that your agent has been able to deal with many of these types of issues successfully.

  1. GET CONNECTED

Your agent knows how important your time is when buying or selling and so is able to leverage his connections with other real estate agents and locals to get you clients within a short period. A good agent takes on the responsibility of helping you achieve your real estate wishes with as little stress as possible.

  1. QUALIFY CLIENTS

A realtor knows when the house is overpriced, when the seller doesn’t want to sell, and if you’re a seller, when the buyer is not serious with buying. This is really important if you don’t want dillydallying with your real estate.

  1. LOCAL MARKET KNOWLEDGE

A good agent knows the current situation of the market. Market information is crucial when coming to a home buying or selling decision. Apart from this, an experienced agent in that neighborhood has a strategy that works best for that market.

  1. NEGOTIATING PROWESS.

Your agent has been in the middle of many real estate negotiations, he/she has undergone training to be a good negotiator. Hence, a real estate agent is in the best position to represent your interest when buying or selling.

  1. ABILITY TO WORK WITH YOUR LIST.

Both the buyer’s agent and the seller’s agent work full-time as real estate agents and know what needs to be done to get an agreement. For example, if you are looking to buy a home, a real estate agent will track homes that meet your criteria, get in touch with the agents of the sellers and make appointments so you can see the houses. If you are buying on your own, you will have to play this telephone tag yourself.

Having a good real estate agent does not cost you anything, but it saves you a lot of potential losses. This is why you need a realtor who has market knowledge and can help you save money on your home deals. Do you want to Sell or Buy a House? Call me today (714) 963-7462.

 

Fed’s hike of 0.25 point in short term rates

Fed’s hike of 0.25 point in short term rates

For the first time in a year and only the second time in a decade, the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC), the policy making arm of the Federal Reserve, voted on Wednesday in its eighth and final meeting of the year to raise the federal funds target rate by 25 basis points up to the 0.50 to 0.75 percent range. Analysts in the housing industry have been speculating for weeks as to what the effect of a Fed rate hike would be on mortgage interest rates and overall affordability. In the month prior to the Fed voting to raise the federal funds target rate, the average 30-year FRM rose by more than 50 basis points to a level above 4 percent for the first time in more than a year.

“While the Fed’s hike of 0.25 point in short-term interest rates may trickle down to long-term rate products like 30-year mortgages, the more immediate impact will be felt by borrowers with variable-rate mortgages and home equity lines of credit who can expect an increase in their payments at their next rate reset,” said Tim Manni, mortgage expert at NerdWallet. “Homebuyers shouldn’t be particularly concerned with today’s Fed move. Even with rates hovering over 4 percent, they’re still historically low.

The Fed released a new forecast Wednesday and it projects U.S. economic growth this year to be 1.9% and next year to be 2.1%, both slightly better than the Fed’s previous projection in September. The rate increase indicate that the U.S. economy no longer needs the Fed’s crutches and consumers and businesses can afford to pay more to borrow.

Want to Sell your House?

Not sure where to start? I am here to help you every step of the way!
Together your home will sell as you planned. I will go above and beyond to exceed your real estate expectations.

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Aproximadamente 456,000 Casas  en los Estados Unidos  se encontraban enfrentando una proceso de Ejecución Hipotecaria durante el mes de enero del 2016  , comparado a 583,000 casas reportadas en Enero del 2015. Este el 51 mes consecutivo que estos procesos van declinando.. En el reporte analítico presentada por La compañía Corelogic  mostró que 38,000 Casas completaron una Ejecución Hipotecaria, en otras palabras 38,000 familias quedaron sin techo donde vivir, comparado al mes de Enero del 2015 donde se completaron 46,000. De Los procesos de reposesion de Casas. California esta entre uno de Los 10 estados del país con el numero mas alto en ejecuciones hipotecarias,

 Es importantísimo saber que los programas de ayuda del gobierno siguen activos hasta el 31 de Diciembre del 2016,  y que la ayuda es gratuita, así como también los programas que ofrece  el Estado de California  bajo “Conserva TU Casa California,  que fue uno de Los estados que recibió mas ayuda financiera del gobierno  federal  por haber sido considerado  uno de Los mas golpeados  por la crisis hipotecaria que sigue afectando a un elevado numero de familias.

Real Estate Market Trends

 We are now seeing a changing trend in the Real Estate Market.  Rising rental prices are encouraging the millennial’s generation  to experience a nudge toward homeownership, and reports showed that First-time buyers are now at the front line of buying a home.  The Zillow Housing Confidence Index also said that about 5.2 million renters are expected to purchase a house this year, up from 4.2 million a year ago. Where job growth is strong, the millennial who were once renting  are ready and willing to buy.

The United States has about 75 million millennials — people born from 1980 and 1995 — and expected this year to surpass the baby boom generation according to a report released by the Pew Research Center.  Buying a home can be terrifying, and even though this is a big step,  many of us have taken it and enjoyed the comfort and security that homeownership has provided for our loved ones and ourselves.

Sandy Flores Broker/Realtor (714)963-7462
Leading your way Home!

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Why Hire a Realtor?

There is so much information readily available online, and the big question is…Why should we hire a REALTOR® ?

A REALTOR® is a Client Advocate. Only members of the National Association  of Realtors can call themselves REALTORS®    realtor-logo

REALTORS® are Real Estate Specialists.

REALTORS® Lower Your Risk. When you have a Realtor as an advocate, you share some of the risk of home buying/selling with your agent.

REALTORS® Have Inventory. According to The National Association of Realtors , over four-fifths of existing homes in the U.S. are represented by real estate brokers.

REALTORS® Understand The Complexity Of The Transaction.

We’re all looking for more precious time in our lives, and hiring pros gives us that time.

Can you afford not to have the experience of a REALTOR®  by your side?

Sandy Flores

Sandy Flores                   Broker/Realtor                     (714) 963-7462    http://www.sandyflores.com

 

 

 

 

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Welcome HOME APP!

apps-student-smartphone-A new HOME mobile app that educates future homeowners about the steps and responsibilities of buying and owning a home was launched by Fannie Mae, to provide educational resources to reduce barriers to homeownership.

The app offers useful tools to help homebuyers to:

  • Figure out what they can afford,
  • Understand their mortgage payments,
  • Save for a down payment, and,
  • Learn how much they can save in interest by making extra mortgage payments.

If you are a First Time Buyer,  Call me Sandy Flores (714)963-7462!

Let’s make the Dream of Homeownership a reality!

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Tienes un Prestamo HELOC?

Informate de la expiracion de este tipo de prestamo si lo tienes. Muchos de estos HELOCS estan iniciando a reactivarse y van con intereses muy altos y variables. Tu tienes la opcion de aplicar para una modificacion bajo el Making Home Affordable en segundas hipotecas o refinanciar tu propiedad combinando los dos prestamos en un solo pago.

Como siempre informate!  www.sandyflores.com

 

 

Ready, Set, GO!

actnowDon’t obsess with trying to time the market and figure out when is the best time to buy.  

Trying to anticipate the housing market is impossible.

The best time to buy is when you find your perfect house and you can afford it.  Real estate is cyclical, it goes up and it goes down and it goes back up again.

So, if you try to wait for the perfect time, you’re probably going to miss it out!

 

56 Percent of 3.3 Million HELOCs Scheduled to Reset With Higher Payments

realestatehousemoneymi600-resize-600x338A total of 3,262,036 HELOCs with an estimated total balance of $158 billion that originated during the housing price bubble between 2005 and 2008 are still open and scheduled to reset between 2015 and 2018.

Realty Trac the nation’s leading source for comprehensive housing data, today released its first-ever U.S. HELOC Resetting Report, which found that 56 percent of the 3.3 million Home Equity Lines of Credit potentially resetting with higher, fully amortizing monthly payments from 2015 to 2018 are on properties that are seriously underwater.

With 645,872 HELOCs, California led the way among the states in terms of sheer volume of resetting HELOCs. A total of 423,706 (66 percent) of those resetting HELOCs in California are on homes that still seriously underwater

 

ARE YOU READY TO OWN A HOME?

ARE YOU READY TO OWN A HOME?

Home ownership means you no longer pay monthly rent for the roof over your head. buying-a-home11When you leave, you can sell it to recoup the purchase price and earn any profit that you may have accumulated through your appreciation in value.

But don’t kid yourself. Home ownership comes with a slew of disadvantages, responsibilities, and downright headaches. So before going any further, consider whether your lifestyle and finances make home buying a smart move for you.

Except in a roaring real estate market, it usually doesn’t make sense to buy a home you’ll stay for less than three or four years, because the cost of the process of buying and selling your property means that you could lose money  from your equity.   On the other hand, you will not pay capital gain taxes if you’re in the property for at least of 2 years.

One key question is whether it costs more, on average, to rent or own in your area. The rule of thumb is that if you pay 33% in rent than you would for owning  including the monthly mortgage, property taxes, and any homeowner’s fees,  then it’s smarter to own a home then renting it.

As always, get your finances in order before committing to buy a home, and stay informed of all the options, alternatives and programs that will fit your needs.

Get help, and call a Realtor…Call me  714-963-7462.   Leading your way home!

Is a Bigger house always better?

Is a Bigger house always better?

65st-fixer-upperEveryone’s drawn to the biggest, most beautiful house on the block.

But bigger is usually not better when it comes to houses. There’s an old adage in real estate that says don’t buy the biggest, best house on the block. The largest house only appeals to a very small audience and you never want to limit potential buyers when you go to re-sell.

Your home is only going to go up in value as much as the other houses around you. If you pay $600,000 for a home and your neighbors pay $350,000 to $300,000, your appreciation is going to be limited. Sometimes it is best to is buy the house that has the most deferred maintenance on the block, because the worst house per square foot always trades for more than the biggest house.

$4.5 Billion on Delinquent Debt ready to Hit the Market

$4.5 Billion on Delinquent Debt ready to Hit the Market

Three of the nation’s largest mortgage lenders have put sizable packages of nonperforming and reperforming mortgage loans on the realestatehousemoneymi600-resize-600x338 market for investors to buy, according to New York Mission Capital Advisors.

Bank of America has put up approximately $2.56 billion worth of delinquent debt for sale, including nonperforming loans, reperforming mortgages (those in which the borrower was 90 days or more behind but has resumed making payments), and home equity lines of credit (HELOCs), according to Mission Capital.

Citigroup has put up $1.8 billion worth of reperforming mortgages for sale, and JPMorgan Chase is looking for a buyer for $143 million worth of nonperforming mortgage loans, Mission Capital said. Last month, Freddie Mac announced that it intended to sell $410 million worth of delinquent mortgage loans. But there has been so much of a demand that the suppliers cannot keep up, Mission Capital said.

Two new regulations affecting Homeowners will increase energy efficiency standards.

Energy Efficiency

Every year, much of the energy the U.S. consumes is wasted through transmission, heat loss and inefficient technology costing American families and businesses money, and leading to increased carbon pollution.   Energy efficiency is one of the easiest and most cost-effective ways to combat climate change, clean the air we breathe, improve the competitiveness of our businesses and reduce energy costs for consumers.

The Department of Energy is working with universities, businesses and the National Labs to develop new, energy-efficient technologies while boosting the efficiency of current technologies on the market.

Increasing energy efficiency has been a long-awaited mission for The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE). This year the DOE launched two new regulations involving air conditioning equipment and water heaters that will increase energy efficiency finally accomplishing these goals.

1.  The first change involves raising efficiency standards for Air Conditioning equipment.

Two-thirds of all homes in the United States have air conditioners. Air conditioners use about 5% of all the electricity produced in the United States, at an annual cost of more than $11 billion to homeowners. As a result, roughly 100 million tons of carbon dioxide are released into the air each year, an average of about two tons for each home with an air conditioner.

Beginning January 1, 2015, new Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio (SEER) standards will increase from 13 to 14. The higher the SEER rating, the more energy efficient a unit is. For those not familiar with the term, SEER is calculated by dividing how much a unit cools by how much energy it uses during a typical cooling season.

There are many other alternatives that provide cooling with less energy use. You might also consider fans, evaporative coolers, or heat pumps as your primary means of cooling. In addition, a combination of proper insulation, energy-efficient windows and doors, day lighting, shading, and ventilation will usually keep homes cool with a low amount of energy use in all but the hottest climates. Although ventilation is not an effective cooling strategy in hot, humid climates, the other approaches can significantly reduce the need to use air conditioning.

2.  The second big change involves water heater replacements. This is an amendment to the  National Appliance Energy Conservation Act known as the 2015 DOE      Final Rule.

When the amendment takes effect on April 16, 2015, the DOE will require higher energy factor ratings on virtually all residential gas, electric, oil and tankless gas water heaters.

Hot water has become essential to our daily lives — from washing hands to cleaning dishes to showering — and quickly adds up to higher energy bills. It comes as no surprise that water heaters account for nearly 17 percent of a home’s energy use, consuming more energy than all other household appliances combined.

We are all guilty of using a little too much hot water in our daily lives — whether it is spending an extra two minutes in the shower, leaving the water running while washing dishes or washing clothes on hot water instead of cold. Taken together, these habits of wasting water add up. So it is no surprise that the average household spends $400-$600 a year on water heating — accounting for 14-18 percent of homeowners’ utility bills.

Homeowners need to be familiar with these new regulations to benefit from them, and avoid difficult and costly decisions in the future regarding energy efficiency standards.

 

Mortgage Debt Forgiveness Act on the GO Now!

Mortgage Debt Forgiveness Act on the GO Now!

The Senate approved the long time waiting extension of the Mortgage Debt Forgiveness Act , bringing home owners who did a short sale this year one step closer to tax relief. Home being soldThe bill, which passed the House of Representatives two weeks ago, is expected to be signed by President Barack Obama. The Senate approved the bill in a 76-16 vote.

The Mortgage Forgiveness Debt Relief Act of 2007 was created to help distressed homeowners; that were faced with taxes after a Principal reduction; however this law expired Dec. 31, 2013 making distressed home owners responsible for paying taxes on “phantom income” from the forgiven debt. The tax on a 2014 short sale or workout would have been due this coming April 15 had Congress not extended the measure.

The extension will only apply to short sales conducted in 2014. Any further extensions will have to be considered by the new Congress, which begins its 2015 session in January.

Get ready, set, And Go!    My Community Mortgage Program is Back.

Get ready, set, And Go! My Community Mortgage Program is Back.

It is official!   wr-df-refinance-7Both government-sponsored enterprises Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac announced their individual 97% loan-to-value products, in the government’s latest attempt to expand the credit eligibility for first-time homeowners.

Back in October, the Federal Housing Finance Agency announced a number of policy steps aimed at increasing mortgage credit availability

These new lending guidelines were released today by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and will enable creditworthy borrowers who can afford a mortgage, but lack the resources to pay a substantial down payment plus closing costs, to get a mortgage with only 3% down.

Fannie’s My Community Mortgage product with a 3% down payment will be available now through desktop under writing tool starting  the weekend of December 13, 2014. Fannie defines a first-time buyer as someone who hasn’t had primary residence in the last three years.

Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac’ underwriting systems includes as well compensating factors to evaluate a borrower’s creditworthiness who can afford a house payment.

These products come at the right time as top housing economists predict 2015 to be a significant year for the housing market.

Homeowners may be hit with a massive Tax Bills if extension is not granted by Congress.

Homeowners may be hit with a massive Tax Bills if extension is not granted by Congress.

Congress has left unrenewed The Mortgage Forgiveness Debt Relief Act of 2007 created to help distressed homeowners; that were faced with taxes after a Principal reduction. Under current federal Pay-Estimated-Taxestax law, when the homeowners accept reductions in what they owe, the amount forgiven by the bank gets reported to the IRS, and the owner is hit with taxes as  if it were ordinary income.

Without Congressional action to renew the breaks, those whom banks allowed to sell their homes for less than the amount of their mortgage would have to pay taxes on the forgiven mortgage debt as if it were income, and it will hit hard on homeowners with a massive tax bills. This Congressional inaction could add $75K  in phantom income.

RealtyTrac estimates that in the first three-quarters of 2014, there have been more than 170,000 short sales representing a mortgage debt forgiveness of $8.1 billion total. The average short sale has a mortgage forgiveness of about $75,000, which if the tax break expires would be counted as income.

If Congress does not extend the law retroactively thousands of underwater homeowners could be hit with tax burdens that may not be able to handle.

 

Home sales hit fastest rise in more than a year

Home sales hit fastest rise in more than a year

buying-a-home11Sales of existing-homes rose by 1.5% in October according to the National Association of Realtors (NAR). Last October previously-owned homes reached its highest annual pace of the year as buyers continue to be encouraged by interest rates at lows not seen for a long time.

This numbers also represents the first yearly gain since October 2013. The median existing-home prices posted as well an increase compared to October 2013. From the previous year, October’s median price of $208,300 was up 5.5%, marking the 32nd straight month of yearly improvement.

The National Association of Realtors tracks completed transactions of single family homes, townhomes, condominiums and co-ops each month, dubbing this group “existing-home sales.” As the housing market crashed back in 2008, NAR also began tracking the share of home sales that were distressed (foreclosures and short sales).

In October distressed home sales declined to 9% of the total, hitting the single digits for the third month in 2014. One year ago, distressed sales accounted for 14% of the market. Foreclosures account for 7%, and short sales 2% total average. The share of homes purchased for all-cash buyers in October accounted for 27%, compared to a 31% in October 2013.

First-time buyers remain a smaller slice of the market than the historic norm, at 29% in October for the fourth straight month. First-time buyers have represented less than 30% of the buyer pool in 18 of the past 19 months.

Inventory levels declined by 2.6% in October to a supply of 2.22 million existing-homes available for sale the lowest level since March, but 5.2% higher than a year ago, when there were only 2.11 million existing-homes for sale.

We still need an increment on housing inventory. However, Government-sponsored enterprise Freddie Mac has projected a 20% gain for inventory between 2014 and 2015, which will help supply. Let’s make it happen.

Write a Letter to Santa Claus!

Write a Letter to Santa Claus!

how-to-write-to-santa-300x250 copyMacy’s and Make-A-Wish® are celebrating the 7th year of the Believe campaign. Beginning in November, believers of all ages can bring their stamped letter to Macy’s addressed to Santa at The North Pole, and drop it into the special letterbox.

New this year, you can also create and send a letter online at macys.com/believe. For each letter received, Macy’s will donate $1 to Make-A-Wish, up to $1,000,000.

http://social.macys.com/believe/?cm_mmc=VanityUrl-_-believe-_-n-_-n

Please spread the word!

 

 

Foreclosure Beware!

Foreclosure Beware!

We are experiencing one of the biggest foreclosure filling increases for the last four years.

subastas-ejecuciones-hipotecarias

The number of foreclosure filings experienced a big jump from September to October alone. These filings include but not limited to notice of defaults, scheduled auctions, and bank repossession.  According to RealtyTrac this is the largest month-over-month jump since the peak of foreclosure activity in March 2010.

However even though Foreclosure filings reported were into a considerable 123,109 U.S. residential properties in October,  fortunately still represented an 8 percent decline overall in the number of foreclosure filings from October 2013.  This is equivalent to one house for every 1,069 residential properties in the U.S. reported a foreclosure filing in October based on the latest report from RealtyTrac.

These numbers did not take us by surprise due to that over the past three years an average of 8 percent monthly uptick was scheduled for foreclosure procedures in the country.

On the other hand, REO activity (lenders repossessing properties via foreclosure) increased by 22 percent from September. The largest month-over-month increase since June 2009.  Overall, lenders repossessed 27,914 U.S. residential properties in October, as reported by RealtyTrac which is an agency that monitor housing foreclosure activities in the country.

How much down payment do you really need to buy a house?

How much down payment do you really need to buy a house?

the-state-bank-of-vietnam-said-wednesday-it-has-changed-its-mind-about-a-proposed-ban-on-people-gifting-foreign-money-after-the-plan-evoked-fierce-criticiSaving for a down payment is an important step in becoming financially prepared for homeownership, and there are options and opportunities for financing a home purchase that will allow the borrower to come with little or No Down Payment. For most first-time home buyers, coming up with funds for a down payment is the biggest obstacle to homeownership.

In the mortgage industry, 20% down is considered the benchmark down payment for looking strong on paper as a home buyer. How strong you are on paper will determine how you could obtain a loan.

However, being this a general standard for financial strength does not mean a requirement to get a loan. Reality is that there are home loans that can be obtain with $0 Down Payment if you are eligible.

  1. FHA loans will allow you to apply for as low as a 3.5% down payment up to the maximum conforming loan limit in the county in which the property is located. Most lenders can lend up to $417,000 under FHA guidelines.
  2. Conventional 5% Down Payment is another option for first time homebuyers. This is an excellent alternative to the higher-priced FHA loan Mortgage Insurance that allows to get rid of PMI after accumulating 20% equity after a minimum of 24 months.
  3. $0. Down payment: 2 options that are available if you are eligible:  a. VA loans allow 100% financing all the way through the maximum  conforming loan limit in the county in which the property is located.  Veteran’s Affairs mortgage loans are available to veterans, current members of the military and their spouse.  b. USDA Loans allow 100% financing through the Rural Development United States Department of Agriculture. Property must be located within an area designated to be eligible for 100% financing.

There are also 10% down payment and 15% down payment loans. All 3 of these types of loans involve PMI. As time goes on, the push will be for a minimum 20% down payment. Remember with 20% down, there is no PMI. Conventional wisdom says you should put down as much as you feel comfortable putting down to buy a home. Generally, more is better than less. But don’t wipe out your savings account to do it. You will still need to have funds set aside for a rainy day and for things to buy after buying a home.

Jumbo loans are loans that usually can go as high as $750,000 with as little as 10% down.

However keep in mind that if you’re putting less than 20% down payment on a home, your monthly property taxes and fire insurance terms are most likely to be built into your monthly mortgage payment, and you’ll maybe have to pay for private mortgage insurance, as well.

Ultimately, the minimum down payment required will depend on the type of loan that you choose. Each mortgage loan type carries its own guidelines, and today underwriters closely scrutinize a borrower’s ability to repay the loan before giving you a loan.

Secured Property Taxes Due on November 1st.

Secured Property Taxes Due on November 1st.

All property owners in California must pay taxes that are based on the value of their homes or commercial property. Property taxes are paid in two installments. The fiscal year’s first property tax bills are mailed out on October 1st; the first installment is due by November 1st, and is considered delinquent on December 10th. The second installment is due February 1st, and this payment is considered delinquent after April 10th. Property Taxes Due Now copy

For many California taxpayers, the property tax bill is one of the largest tax payments they make each year. For thousands of California local governments—K–12 schools, community colleges, cities, counties, and special districts—revenue from property tax bills represents the foundation of their budgets.

 

A California property tax bill includes a variety of different taxes and charges.

Among them,

  • The 1 percent rate established by Proposition 13 (1978). Under Proposition 13, a referendum passed in 1978, property taxes may not exceed 1 percent of the assessed value of your home. And cannot rise by an amount greater than the rate of inflation, as measured by the Consumer Price Index, up to a limit of 2 percent a year.
  • Additional tax rates to pay for local voter–approved debt.
  • Property assessments.
  • Mello–Roos taxes.
  • Parcel taxes.

Opening Doors for Homebuyers!

Opening Doors for Homebuyers!

The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation is the first of six financial regulators to release the final version of the long-awaited qualified residential mortgage (QRM) rule. The National Association of Realtors applauds this action because it will make possible to incorporate rules that include a broad definition for Qualified Mortgage standards implemented earlier this year.

Got your House?

Got your House?

Under the QRM rule, loans are generally considered qualified if the borrower’s debt-to-income ratio is 43 percent, among other things and there is not onerous down payment requirement, as regulators had originally proposed.

The NAR strongly opposed earlier versions of the rule that included 20 and 30 percent down payment requirements, which would have denied millions of Americans access to the lowest-cost and safest mortgages

For lenders, having these two rules in alignment provides the clarity they’ve long been asking for, widening and deepening loan eligibility and availability, which has been one of the main stumbling blocks to increased home sales.

Homebuyers will have now more credit availability reflecting an increase in home purchases, and refis. Way to go!

Got Refi?   Rates…better than ever

Got Refi? Rates…better than ever

 

Finding-a-refinance-rate-for-your-homeFalling interest rates precipitated a major refinancing rally  according to the Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA’s) Refinance Index.  The MBA’s Refinance Index is a weekly measurement put together by the Mortgage Bankers Association, and the National Real Estate Finance Industry Association.

Strong job growth, coupled with  low mortgage rates, should reflect now the increase in home sales and purchase originations. Great time for purchases but even better for refinancing.

 

 

 

Homeownership at Best!

Homeownership at Best!

Federal Housing Finance Agency has been working towards a plan to open what many we see as underwriting standards that are too restrictive.

Mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, their regulator and lenders are close to an agreement that could greatly expand mortgage credit while helping lenders protect themselves from charges of making bad loans, according to people familiar with the matter.

Homeownership getting better!

Homeownership Gets Better!

If the agreement is completed, lenders may be more willing to lend to borrowers with lower credit scores and smaller down payments.

Now that lenders are starting to remove some of the credit overlays, it is time to improve the growth of homeownership in the country

We expect FHFA to report the steps to further move and clarify lender liability and support the return of the 97% LTV product at the GSEs, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac have recouped tens of billions of dollars in penalties from lenders in recent years over claims that the lenders made underwriting mistakes on loans they sold to the mortgage giants.

However, Lenders have blamed those penalties for tight credit conditions and for prompting them to make loans only to borrowers with near-pristine credit.

We hope these initiatives will have a meaningful impact on the mortgage market, and we can see positive changes in the direction of the mortgages industry after years of tightening credit issues.

Next Tuesday will see the existing home sales report for September, on Thursday the FHFA purchase-only house price index for August, and Friday the new home sales report.

 

Save on your Mortgage NOW!

HELOCs the next thing home credit product? Mortgage rates are historically low, and many owners have the opportunity to take advantage, but not all owners pay close attention to these numbers.  

You have the opportunity to investigate the possibility of refinancing through HARP or stream line if your loan is FHA to take advantage of the historic rates.  

You can analyze  what financial options give you the best interest rate and  most convenient terms according to your personal situation, and you do this by comparing these rates from various financial institutions through the Good Faith Estimate. This simple action prompts banks to be more competitive and offer rates lower while they. 

Mortgage rates are closely linked to the action of the Federal Reserve – Fed and the economy, so it’s important that you analyze your financial situation to see if you could take advantage of the today historic rates, before they take off.     

Let me explain with numbers in this example:

Balance of   mortgage:  $ 200,000 –

§  Interest @6.5% Monthly Payment 1,440.                                           

§  Interest @3.75% Monthly Payment $ 1,014.                                           

§  Total Savings Monthly $ 426.                                                          

§  Total Savings Per Year $5,112.

§  30 Years Total Savings  $153.360.

Check your mortgage payments,  interest rate,  balance and the pending term of the life on your loan, so you can determine if refinancing is best for you. The Government Program HARP that does not require evaluation of the value of the property, conventional and FHA  Streamline Refinance are great choices to consider allowing substantial savings.

Don’t Miss It Out!

 

 

NOW is the time…Rates don’t wait!

If you have higher mortgage payments, now is the time to change it!  In recent years we have seen many changes in our national economy. We have seen cuts in interest rates given by the Federal Reserve cuts not seen for many years. imagesCA68GG1H

One situation that influenced home foreclosures for many homeowners were the high interest rates they were granted. These mortgage loans  were presented for a large number of months as a fixed payments and later converted into variable rates, causing a drastic financial instability in many homeowners facing now a new higher mortgage payment.

The HARP Refinance Program gives the Homeowners that have not been behind in the last 12 months, and can prove income under the new conditions and repayment capacity; the opportunity to refinance with low current interest rates. This means that you can refinance even if the actual mortgage balance is higher than the value of your property on the market today.  The HARP and FHA programs are the only programs that allow you to refinance under these terms.

Compare and discuss your options and determine if refinancing NOW is financially right for you. The essence of refinancing is to find the best fit and financial balance  for you and your family. Remember, an informed decision is the best guarantee!

Home sales show encouraging stats

Home sales show encouraging stats

Existing home sales, excluding distressed sales, are the most encouraging stats at the moment. These, according to Trulia and the National Association of Realtors, were 80 percent back to normal in August.

home-salesTrulia’s Bubble Watch also showed that prices were 3.4 percent undervalued in the third quarter, which is a marked improvement over the 13.5 percent undervaluation at the worst of the housing bust. That means prices are three-fourths of the way back to normal.

Delinquency and foreclosure rates also were much improved. According to Trulia and Black Knight, the national delinquency and foreclosure rate was 74 percent back to normal in August, the same as one quarter ago and up from 56 percent one year ago. The decline in defaults and foreclosures has helped stabilize the financial system and hard-hit neighborhoods.

Mortgage Rates slightly higher

Mortgage Rates slightly higher

Finding-a-refinance-rate-for-your-homeMortgage rates are higher today, leaving September as one of only 3 months this year with noticeable upward movement.

And today was an exception to that recent trend, but it’s tempered by the fact that yesterday’s gains were the best of the month.

The only downside is that the most prevalently-quoted conforming 30yr fixed rate for top tier borrowers remains 4.25% whereas it would have likely moved to 4.125% if rate went the other direction today.

These movement considerations may be small scale compared to what lies ahead.  Several big tickets events are coming up in the second half of this week and they stand a good chance to increase the level of volatility.

80,000 Foreclosures prevented!

The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) indicated in its report on foreclosure prevention  for Q2 2014 released on September 24, that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac  prevented nearly 80,000 foreclosures nationwide in the second quarter, raising the total number of foreclosures prevented since the start of the conservatorship in September 2008 to 3.3 million.

fThe measures taken by the two GSEs to prevent foreclosures have helped about 2.7 million borrowers remain in their homes in the last six years, with approximately 1.7 million of those borrowers receiving permanent loan modifications. The number of foreclosures prevented is down 10 percent from Q1, when GSE measures stopped almost 89,000 foreclosures.

FHFA reports as well that about 37 percent of those who received permanent loan modifications were able to reduce their monthly payments by more than 30 percent in second quarter.

80,000 Propiedades  se salvan de una Ejecución Hipotecaria

80,000 Propiedades se salvan de una Ejecución Hipotecaria

La Agencia Federal de la Financiamiento de la Vivienda (FHFA) indicó en su informe del 24 de Septiembre que Fannie Mae y Freddie Mac impidieron que alrededor de 80.000 casas se fueran en una ejecución hipotecaria en todo el país durante el segundo trimestre del 2014, elevando la prevención del número total de ejecuciones hipotecarias desde Septiembre de 2008 a 3.3 millones.

fLas medidas adoptadas por las dos GSE para evitar las ejecuciones hipotecarias han ayudado a unos 2,7 millones de prestatarios a permanecer en sus hogares en los últimos seis años. 1,7 millones de  prestatarios recibieron modificaciones permanentes de préstamo.

El número de ejecuciones hipotecarias prevenidas en el primer trimestre fue del 10 por ciento, cuando las GSE detuvieron     89.000 ejecuciones hipotecarias.

FHFA informa también que alrededor del 37 por ciento de propietarios que recibieron modificaciones permanentes de préstamo redujeron sus pagos mensuales hasta un 30 por ciento en el segundo trimestre.

FHFA outreaching more Homeowners

FHFA outreaching more Homeowners

In an effort to sign more eligible homeowners up for the Home Affordablefhfa Refinance Program (HARP), the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA)   is holding its third HARP outreach event in October, 2014.

The goal is to get the word out about HARP to borrowers who are current but underwater, and help borrowers who are either delinquent or at risk of losing their home recognize that they too have options.

  • Borrowers are eligible for a HARP loan if they meet the following requirements:
  • Their loan must be owned or guaranteed by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac;
  • The loan must have been originated on or before May 21, 2009;
  • LTV ratio must be greater than 80 percent;
  • Borrower must be current on mortgage payments.

Borrowers who could benefit from HARP are referred to as “in the money” borrowers; they are “in the money” if they meet all the HARP eligibility requirements, have a remaining balance on their loan of greater than $50,000 with more than 10 years left on their term, and have an interest rate of more than 1.5 percent more than current market rates.

As of June 2014, about 3.1 million homeowners have refinanced through HARP since it was introduced by FHFA and Treasury in 2009 as part of the Making Home Affordable Program.

FHFA extiende invitación a Propietarios de Viviendas

FHFA extiende invitación a Propietarios de Viviendas

En un esfuerzo para llegar a más propietarios elegibles para el Programa de Refinanciación Asequible –HARP, la Agencia Federal de Financiamiento de la Vivienda (FHFA) patrocina su tercer evento de HARP en Octubre 2014.

fhfaEl objetivo es correr la voz acerca de HARP a los prestatarios que continúan actualmente con  sus balances  por debajo del valor de sus propiedades.

Los prestatarios elegibles para un préstamo de HARP tienen que cumplir los siguientes requisitos:

  • Su préstamo debe ser propiedad o garantizado por Fannie Mae o Freddie Mac;
  • El préstamo debe haber sido originado en o antes del 21 de Mayo de 2009;
  • La proporción de la Deuda/Valor debe ser mayor del 80 por ciento;
  • Prestatarios deben estar al corriente en los pagos de su hipoteca.

Hasta Junio del 2014,  3,1 millones de propietarios han financiado a través de HARP desde que fue introducido por FHFA y el Departamento del Tesoro en el 2009 como parte del Programa Making Home Affordable.

New homes sales see biggest monthly jump!

New homes sales see biggest monthly jump!

Sales of new single family houses in August 2014 were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 504,000, up from July’s printing of 427,000, the fastest rate in six years and the biggest monthly jump since January 1992.

firsthomeblog

The biggest gains and by far the reason for the big increase were new home sales in the West, one of the two largest housing markets, along with the South.

New home sales in the West were up 50% over July.

The South saw an 8% increase. The South is by far the largest region for new home sales, outdistancing all other regions combined.

The median sales price of new houses sold in August 2014 was $275,600; the average sales price was $347,900.

Venta de Casas nuevas dan gigantesco salto

Venta de Casas nuevas dan gigantesco salto

La venta de casas nuevas en el mes de Agosto incrementó notablemente resultando en una tasa de 504,000, más que en Julio que fueron de 427,000, la tasa más rápida en 6 años y el salto más grande en ventas desde Enero de 1992.

firsthomeblog

Las mayores ganancias y en gran medida la razón para el considerable aumento fueron las ventas en la región oeste, uno de los dos mayores mercados de vivienda, junto con la región sur.

La venta de casas nuevas  en la región oeste era un 50% en Julio.

La región sur vio un aumento del 8%.  El sur es la región más grande de ventas, superando todas las demás regiones combinadas.

El precio mediano de las ventas de viviendas nuevas vendidas en Agosto de 2014 fue $275.600; el precio promedio de venta fue de $347.900.

 

Listo para Comprar tu Primera Casa?

Listo para Comprar tu Primera Casa?

Has sido precalificado por una entidad financiera? 

Es importante saber que una vez que ya has sido precalificado por el banco no añadas cargos en tus tarjetas de crédito, en anticipación a la Compra de tu Casa tales como muebles o artículos eléctricos, o tal vez decoraciones.

Es esencial saber que estas compras van a reflejar  un impacto drástico en tu reporte de crédito  que pudieran repercutir negativamente  corriendo el  riesgo de que a último momento el banco no te otorgue el crédito hipotecario.

Cuando comienzas a incrementar los balances en tus tarjetas de crédito los prestamistas no se sienten seguros en otorgarte el préstamo.  Es conveniente que para evitar estos tipos de incidentes o complicaciones  esperes hasta que el proceso de la compra de tu casa haya cerrado completamente, sin dejar de analizar cautelosamente tu poder adquisitivo a la hora de incrementar sus obligaciones financieras.

Recuerda que lo que no sabes, puede perjudicarte.   Sandy Flores, siempre contigo, hasta la próxima!
Si tienes preguntas o deseas hacer un comentario escríbeme a sandyfloresbroker@gmail.com  o llámame al 714-963-7462.

Going solo could be costly when buying a Home

Going solo could be costly when buying a Home

By, Sandy Flores Broker,

If you think hiring an agent when trying out a home sale or purchase is old news. it’s not, 88% of home buyers still purchase homes via real estate agents. True, the existence of home buying and selling websites, 1% commission sales and home buying and selling apps has made it considerable easy to go about a home sale or purchase yourself and save the realtor commissions that you have to surrender. But, the 88% of home buyers couldn’t be wrong, and here are seven reasons why you need a realtor when buying or selling a home.

Although you may be attracted by the promise of “zero real estate commission” that going solo with your real estate deals command. It could actually turn out to be more costly. Stats prove that FSBO sellers sell their house for $30,000 less than what it’s really worth. Moreover, a random real estate buyer doesn’t have the negotiating prowess that an agent possesses.

You might find yourself in any unforeseen situation when buying or selling a home. It’s your agent’s responsibility to give advice suited to you when you’re either buying or selling a home. The reason why you need a realtor in this case is that your agent has been able to deal with many of these types of issues successfully.

Your agent knows how important your time is when buying or selling and so is able to leverage his connections with other real estate agents and locals to get you clients within a short period. A good agent takes on the responsibility of helping you achieve your real estate wishes with as little stress as possible.

A good agent knows the current situation of the market. Market information is crucial when coming to a home buying or selling decision. Apart from this, an experienced agent in that neighborhood has a strategy that works best for that market.

Your agent has been in the middle of many real estate negotiations, he/she has undergone training to be a good negotiator. Hence, a real estate agent is in the best position to represent your interest when buying or selling.

Both the buyer’s agent and the seller’s agent work full-time as real estate agents and know what needs to be done to get an agreement. For example, if you are looking to buy a home, a real estate agent will track homes that meet your criteria, get in touch with the agents of the sellers and make appointments so you can see the houses. If you are buying on your own, you will have to play this telephone tag yourself.

Having a good real estate agent does not cost you anything, but it saves you a lot of potential losses. This is why you need a realtor who has market knowledge and can help you save money on your home deals.

Do you want to Sell or Buy a House? Call me today  (714) 963-7462.

 

Buying your First Home?

Buying your First Home?

By Sandy Flores Broker

 

In the past three years, prices of homes in Los Angeles have soared by 30 percent. In many areas, you’ll find a seller’s market. Only a three months’ supply of home available with 5,538 properties (single family homes and condos) sold in the past 6 months. Experts predict a seller’s market in 5 months’ time in Los Angeles and you can expect prices to go higher in coming years. So, if you’re still waiting to buy a home in Los Angeles, don’t wait too long.

But jumping in hastily isn’t recommended either. It’s possible for first time buyers to get too excited about the home buying prospect and rush in. Follow these 5 tips to avoid first time home buyer mistakes when buying a home in Los Angeles:

  1. How much house can I afford?

How much can you really afford? You need to determine how much of the monthly mortgage payments you’ll be comfortable with. Apart from meeting with a lender and reviewing your finances, there should be some soul-searching. Experts advise against going for the most expensive home you qualify for, unless you can truly bear the costs that come along with it.

  1. Be prepared

As a first timer, buying a home in Los Angeles presents you with so many options, yet you need to be prepared for rigid competition. If you are not paying cash, you should get a pre-approval from your lender before you proceed with buying a home in Los Angeles. Cash buyers tend to be more attractive to sellers because then the seller wouldn’t have to wait for the lender to approve a loan. You will need to have a down payment that’ll cover at least 20 percent of the selling price, and you may still face a bidding war for the home of your dreams.

  1. Check the down payment assistance program

Before you buy, check to see if you qualify for one of the down payment assistance programs. In Orange County, a family of four may qualify for state and federal assistance, even with an income as high as $108,350.

  1. Research The Neighborhood

Your knowledge of the area shouldn’t just be based on what your realtor told you. Research the neighborhood yourself during the day and at night. Converse with the locals at “Mom-and-Pop” stores, cafes, restaurants, markets, etc.

Immersing yourself into the neighborhood as a “local” will help you catch information that will not be disclosed by your realtor. This will give you a pellucid picture of the area.

  1. Choose the best Realtor

The truth is; agents deal with enormous amounts of problems and stress. Most of them are expert problem solvers, have “insider” information about properties/areas and can get you a great price on your home through great negotiation skills.

But just like in virtually any vocation, there will be the good and the bad. An inexperienced agent will set you back in time, money and can decrease your likelihood of getting the property you truly want. You need the best hands when buying a home in Los Angeles as a first timer, Give me a call 714.963.7462. Let’s find your dream home!

 

Tired of building your landlord’s equity instead of your own?

Tired of building your landlord’s equity instead of your own?

By, Sandy Flores Broker

 

Making that leap from renting to owning a home comes with many strings attached both financially and emotionally. And even though home ownership comes with great responsibility, you might be surprised how achievable it can be.

You can make the Dream of Owning your Home a reality, absolutely!  If you are paying monthly rent is very likely you would be able to afford a mortgage payment. The most important factor is to know how much you can qualify for and if the mortgage rates and term for your payments will actually fit your budget comfortably.

There are so many options and programs that will help you as a First Time Home Buyer, with low or no-down payment. Check it out!

For more information call me. I am here to guide you over.

 

Facing the possibility of Probate?

Facing the possibility of Probate?


By, Sandy Flores Broker, Certified Probate Realtor in California CPRES, with special skills in dealing with Probate Real Estate Sales.

A home is sold in probate court when someone dies intestate.  This means the person has died without bequeathing their property or stating what to do with the property now that the owner is no longer with us.  When this happens, the court system takes over and administers the property’s sale. The court wants to be certain the property is marketed and sold at the best possible price.  The good news for the heirs or other people involved in settling these matters is that the cost of a real estate probate sale is generally no different than the costs involved when selling a regular piece of real estate.

The short answer to, “How to sell during probate,” is to hire a top notch, experienced probate real estate specialist. A Certified Probate Real Estate Specialist (CPRES), can help best to deal with probate real estate sales.

 

Your  welcome to use our FREE evaluation tool  to check your property value here:

 

 

New Tax Plan Would Slam California Housing Market, Are you Ready?

California’s biggest housing markets figure to be among the losers if a Republican-sponsored tax overhaul becomes law, according to two analyses of local market data.

Currently, a married couple can deduct interest on mortgages of up to $1,000,000; the GOP plan would cut that to $500,000.

Similarly, deductions of state and local property tax would be capped at $10,000. According to the Tax Foundation, the mortgage interest cap would hurt high-income taxpayers more than those in the middle- and lower-income brackets, because they likely own larger homes and have higher mortgage debt.

In some of the nation’s largest coastal cities, the impact could be significant.  In the San Jose, Calif., for example metropolitan area, 75% of new mortgage loans thus far in 2017 were for more than $500,000, according to an analysis by CoreLogic Inc., a housing data provider. The median home price there is more than $1 million, and even small starter homes can climb well above the proposed cap. In San Francisco metro area, 60% of new loans were for more than $500,000, while in Los Angeles and San Diego, the figures were 44% and 37%, respectively.

In addition to capping the mortgage interest deduction, the bill also limits the amount of property taxes that households can deduct to $10,000 annually. That also could hit parts of California hard, where some homeowners pay many times that.

Jeff Barnett, vice chairman of the National Association of Realtors’ large-firm real-estate services committee, said his area will be hit “very, very hard” if the tax bill passes. Even if corporate tax cuts help boost the economy, he doesn’t think that will be enough to compensate. “You’ve taken away so many incentives for housing, they can’t spend” the money from any extra economic growth, he said.

The Bay Area, Southern California and New York are the most often cited cities impacted by the mortgage-deduction cap. According to Zillow eliminating the state and local tax deduction and doubling the standard minimum deduction would result in homes valued at more than $800,000 worth taking itemizing the mortgage deduction.

The impact of the cap on the mortgage deduction could further nullify the number of future homeowners impacted by tax reform.  Zillow estimates that only 5% of homes would be valuable enough to take the mortgage deduction, and that’s before the newly announced cap.

 Also, caps on property taxes aren’t expected to go up for inflation over time. That means that as property taxes rise, it could hurt homeowners even more.

California housing market defies tight inventory as sales and median price propel higher

California housing market defies tight inventory as sales and median price propel higher

By Sandy Flores,

– Existing, single-family home sales totaled 427,630 in August on a seasonally adjusted annualized rate, up 1.5 percent from July and 1.3 percent from August 2016.
– August’s statewide median home price was $565,330, up 2.9 percent from July and 7.2 percent from August 2016. 

– At the regional level, the San Francisco Bay Area, Inland Empire, and Los Angeles metro area all registered year-to-year sales increases of 6.5 percent, 8.2 percent, and 4.4 percent, respectively.

California’s housing market defied gravity as existing home sales and median home price registered increases on both a monthly and an annual basis in August, the CALIFORNIA ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS® (C.A.R.) said today.  Closed escrow sales of existing, single-family detached homes in California remained above the 400,000 benchmark for the 17th consecutive month and totaled a seasonally adjusted annualized rate of 427,630 units in August, according to information collected by C.A.R. from more than 90 local REALTOR® associations and MLSs statewide. 

Considering selling or buying a home?  Call us today  @ 714-963-7462.  What sets us apart- is not what we do, but how we do it. Our culture’s values encourage us to think differently, share ideas and create effective solutions that help our clients to accelerate their real estate success

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