Why CA Is So “Hot;” Median Home Prices

MEDIAN HOME PRICES If the CA housing market was not appreciating at all, but every buyer suddenly decided they would only buy 4,000 square foot, $1 million homes in 2021 after only buying 2,000 square foot, $500,000 homes in 2020, the median home price would double. And this would lead many people to mistakenly believe […]Read More

Six Home Loan Tips For The Self-Employed

Applying For a Home Loan as a Self-Employed Business Owner There was a time when lenders would accept whatever income you put on your application as accurate and true. These were called “stated income” loans; for many obvious reasons, they no longer exist. There were also loan programs where the lender would accept a record […]Read More

Why A Home Inspection Is Crucial For Homebuyers

Many homebuyers have found the perfect home, signed the paperwork, and may think they’re good to go. However, that is not the case. Even if you’ve done your research and saved your money and made an offer on the perfect house, you need to have a home inspection. Unfortunately, to save a little cash, some […]Read More

How To Reduce Stress When Buying & Selling A Home

If you are simultaneously buying and selling a home, you are probably experiencing major stress levels. Is there a way to make this process less stressful? Here are three strategies to help you stay calm and focused while buying and selling a home. Have a Detailed Buying and Selling Plan A lot of the stress […]Read More

Is Renting Or Buying Better For You?

Many people want to know if renting or buying a home is right for them and their finances. There are pros and cons to renting and buying a home. To find out if you should continue to rent or if you’re prepared to own, check out the rest of this blog. Pros Of Renting Possible […]Read More

When Is The Best Time To Buy A House?

Are you considering buying a home in the Bay Area? Are you unsure of when the right time to buy is? There are many variables in the homebuying process, the first of which is deciding when to move. Many homebuyers want to time the market and take advantage of the seasonal nature of real estate. […]Read More

When Getting A Loan Is As Easy As Buying A Fridge At Best Buy

In 1999, I needed a new car. Not being particularly into cars, I asked a buddy, who was into cars, what kind of car he recommended. At that time, he said the best buy on the market was a Lexus GS400, and he gave me a detailed list of options and specs I should look […]Read More

Four Steps to Prepare for Closing Day in Dallas, Texas

Closing day is the last step for Dallas homebuyers in their loan process. All their paperwork gets finalized and the deed of the Dallas property is officially transferred to the new owner. Here are four steps to help Texas homebuyers have an easy closing day! 1. Start saving! One of the best ways Dallas homebuyers […]Read More

Buyers Can’t “Roll Closing Costs” Into Their Loan; Options?

Total closing costs for a purchase transaction can vary from $5,000 to $30,000, depending on purchase price, loan amount, type of loan, month of the transaction and location of the transaction. This is b/c closing costs include not only the standard title, escrow, appraisal, underwriting fees, etc.; closing costs also include prepaid interest and property […]Read More

Buy and Bail Concerns

“Buy and Bail” Concerns: We have many buyers now who can qualify for both their existing house and a new house without having to rent out their existing house. Lenders now scrutinize such buyers more carefully b/c of concerns about “Buying and Bailing” on the loan obligations associated with the current home. Lenders underwrite such […]Read More

Homebuyers Memo

This guide is meant only to provide an overview of the home-buying process; its accuracy is not guaranteed. If any part of it is confusing, we STRONGLY encourage the reader to call us as often as desired for clarification. It is essential that everything in this guide is understood. 1. Get Pre-Approved: You need to […]Read More

Do NOT Let Your Buyers Deposit “Cash to Close”

We have an FHA deal right now that is a complete mess b/c our buyer’s realtor encouraged her to “quickly gather all of the cash she needed to close.” This was OK advice, but he should have implored her NOT to deposit ANY of the funds she “gathered.” This particular buyer borrowed money from her […]Read More

Buyers Need to “Behave” During Escrows; Last Minute Checks

Buyers need to be aware that almost all lenders do last-minute “employment verifications” on the day of funding (the day before closing). We have had several escrows this year with borrowers who either were going on maternity leave (with no pay), or they were losing their jobs altogether. In all cases, the buyers thought they […]Read More

Risk of a Double Dip in Housing? We Don’t Think So

Some of our clients are expressing concern about a “double dip” in house prices after seeing some recent “scary” headlines. But, we do not think another drop in housing prices is likely for several reasons. First and foremost, as you all know, inventory is down significantly from last year (about half the level in many […]Read More

Fence Sitter Analysis

We have mentioned the prospect of rates increasing sharply next year both because of inflation fears and because the Fed is supposed to end its massive efforts to keep rates low by buying up mortgage backed securities. If rates do increase, payments will obviously increase too. Here is an analysis we frequently provide for “fence […]Read More

Current Market Is A Huge Boon for First Time Homebuyers

The market collapse is a huge boon for first time home-buyers: On Friday, we received a $410,000 purchase involving a three year home in American Canyon that last sold for $877,000. Our clients are putting down only 3.5% for an FHA loan, and the entire down payment is a gift from their parents. In addition, […]Read More

$8,000 Cannot Be Used for Down, but Buyers Can Access it Faster

I am sure everyone heard about another change to the $8000 homebuyer’s tax credit policy. Last Friday, HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan announced a policy change that would provide buyers with quicker access to the tax credit. The tax credit can be issued in advance in the form of a short term loan to the buyer. […]Read More

Wealthy Co-Signer Does Not Cost First Time Homebuyer $8,000 Tax Credit

If a First Time Homebuyer is buying a home and requires a co-signer to qualify, according to our CPA, the First Time Homebuyer will still be eligible for the $8,000 First Time Homebuyer’s Tax Credit even if the co-signer makes well over $150,000 per year and is not a First Time Home-Buyer. On the hand, […]Read More

Are “New Homes” Worth It?

I have a client looking at new homes in the Antioch Area. She is enamored with the Model Homes. The problem is that the builder wants almost $310,000 for a New Home, while there are closed re-sales of 2 year old versions of the same model with prices under $250,000. My client will get an […]Read More

Benefits of Buying

Once again, please feel free to have us help sell your clients on the benefits of buying. For example, we have a client buying a house with an in-law unit for $737,000. The client is currently paying rent of $2,300 and he had very cold feet about increasing his housing payment to $4,000 (the principal, […]Read More

The Market Is Officially “On Fire”; Fence Sitters Beware

The number of home sales continues to climb markedly as both investors and owner-occupants continue to take advantage of the low rates, the low prices and the cash-flow opportunities that abound in the rental market right now. Contra Costa County alone recorded almost 1,300 sales in February, a 70% increase over February of 2008. Solano […]Read More

High Balance Loans Returning; $8,000 Tax Credit fo First Time Home-Buyers

Almost all of our lenders are currently at 4.875% for a “one point loan”, but we have a single lender that is again subsidizing the purchase market. We have some final news on the Stimulus Bill with respect to how it affects real estate. There will be an $8,000 tax credit (that does not need […]Read More