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How Do Eco-Friendly Features Impact Home Sales

July 2, 2015
Consider me your resource for all things real estate!  Selling, buying, upsizing, downsizing, relocating, investing, vendor referrals, shoulder to cry on during renovations and more.  Just send me an email or call me at 619-888-2117.

EcoFriendlyFeaturesOCT

Water Saving Programs in San Diego

June 25, 2015

CWA-When In Drought LOGO

 

 

Given the drought situation in California, I thought it would be useful to provide this conservation information.  The live links for the programs and rebates listed below can be found here.  This list was generated for the 92103 zip code.

City of San Diego Service Area

Use this link to enter your street address AND zip code here to locate your water provider, restrictions, and conservation programs and incentives that are available in your area.

Example:  Using 92103 as a base address for this information, the local water provider is: San Diego Public Utilities Department
600 B Street San Diego, CA 92101.

Report Water Waste: (619) 570-3525
Report a Leak: (619) 515-3525
Water Restrictions in Your Area: http://www.sandiego.gov/water/conservation/drought/prohibitions.shtml
Conservation link: http://www.sandiego.gov/water/conservation/index.shtml
Contact Phone: 619-533-7485

If located within the City of San Diego service area and offers the following conservation programs:

Programs and Rebates
Rain Barrel Program Rebate Program
Residential Interior and Exterior Surveys
Mulifamily Interior and Exterior Surveys
Commercial Landscape Surveys
Water-Wise Business Survey Program
High-Efficiency Toilets
Residential Outdoor Water Conservation Rebates
Commercial-Multifamily Outdoor Water Conservation Rebates

The following regional programs are also available through the San Diego County Water Authority, the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California, and SDG&E:

San Diego County Water Authority
Agricultural Water Management Program
Artificial Turf Discounts
WaterSmart Landscape Makeover Series
WaterSmart Landscape Efficiency Program
WaterSmart Checkup
WaterSmart Turf Replacement Program
Note: Turf Replacement rebate program funds have been exhausted. We are unable to accept additional applications at this time.

Metropolitan Water District of Southern California
SoCal Water$mart
Landscape Irrigation Survey
Water Savings Incentive Program
On-Site Retrofit Pilot Program

SDG&E
SDG&E Clothes Washer Rebate
Sustainability Circles Program

Consider me your resource for all things real estate!  Selling, buying, upsizing, downsizing, relocating, investing, vendor referrals, shoulder to cry on during renovations and more.  Just send me an email or call me at 619-888-2117.

Do’s and Don’ts of Home Buyer Incentives

June 18, 2015

dos-and-donts2

 

Be sure you’re sending the right message to buyers when you throw in a home buyer incentive to encourage them to purchase your home.

When you’re selling your home, the idea of adding a sweetener to the transaction — whether it’s a decorating allowance, a home warranty, or a big-screen TV — can be a smart use of marketing funds. To ensure it’s not a big waste, follow these do’s and don’ts:

Do use home buyer incentives to set your home apart from close competition. If all the sale properties in your neighborhood have the same patio, furnishing yours with a luxury patio set and stainless steel BBQ that stay with the buyers will make your home stand out.

Do compensate for flaws with a home buyer incentive. If your kitchen sports outdated floral wallpaper, a $3,000 decorating allowance may help buyers cope. If your furnace is aging, a home warranty may remove the buyers’ concern that they’ll have to pay thousands of dollars to replace it right after the closing.

Don’t assume home buyer incentives are legal. Your state may ban home buyer incentives, or its laws may be maddeningly confusing about when the practice is legal and not. Check with your real estate agent and attorney before you offer a home buyer incentive.

Don’t think buyers won’t see the motivation behind a home buyer incentive. Offering a home buyer incentive may make you seem desperate. That may lead suspicious buyers to wonder what hidden flaws exist in your home that would force you to throw a freebie at them to get it sold. It could also lead buyers to factor in your apparent anxiety and make a lowball offer.

Don’t use a home buyer incentive to mask a too-high price. A buyer may think your expensive home buyer incentive — like a high-end TV or a luxury car — is a gimmick to avoid lowering your sale price. Many top real estate agents will tell you to list your home at a more competitive price instead of offering a home buyer incentive. A property that’s priced a hair below its true value will attract not only buyers but also buyers’ agents, who’ll be giddy to show their clients a home that’s a good value and will sell quickly.

If you’re convinced a home buyer incentive will do the trick, choose one that adds value or neutralizes a flaw in your home. Addressing buyers’ concerns about your home will always be more effective than offering buyers an expensive toy.

G.M. Filisko is an attorney and award-winning writer who gritted her teeth and chose a huge price decrease over an incentive to sell a languishing property—and is glad she did. A regular contributor to many national publications including Bankrate.com, REALTOR® Magazine, and the American Bar Association Journal, she specializes in real estate, business, personal finance, and legal topics.

Visit Houselogic.com for more articles like this. Reprinted from Houselogic.com with permission of the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS®.

Consider me your resource for all things real estate!  Selling, buying, upsizing, downsizing, relocating, investing, vendor referrals, shoulder to cry on during renovations and more.  Just send me an email or call me at 619-888-2117.

6 Myths about Credit Scores

June 11, 2015

Consider me your resource for all things real estate!  Selling, buying, upsizing, downsizing, relocating, investing, vendor referrals, shoulder to cry on during renovations and more.  Just send me an email or call me at 619-888-2117.

6MythsaboutCreditScores

Real Estate @ a Glance: June 2015 Edition

June 3, 2015

Better RE glance

Here is the most recent information on the San Diego housing market. For specific information on your neighborhood or a market analysis on your home, please send me an email or call me at 619-888-2117.

Reportable Period :: APRIL 2015 :: SAN DIEGO ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS®

Median Sales Price: $462,500
Days on the Market Until Sale: 40
Housing Affordability Index: 34%
Months Supply: 2.5

HousingStatisticspg15-page-001

To view larger image, click here.

How to Save Water in Your Home

May 28, 2015

save water san diego

From the City of San Diego 

Most people aren’t aware of how many gallons of water the average household uses each week. In San Diego, a typical household uses around 14 hundred cubic feet (HCF) of water a month (more in the summer, less in the winter.) One HCF of water is equal to 748 gallons, so a typical household uses about 10,472 gallons a month.

Here are 24 simple ways to help you save water.  Whatever your conservation goal is – 15 percent, 25 percent, or more – the more of these steps you take the more water you’ll save. The more water you save, the more money you’ll save on your water and sewer bill.

In The Bathroom
While waiting for hot water to come through the pipes, catch the cool, clean, water in a bucket or a watering can. You can use it later to water plants, run your garbage disposer, or pour into the toilet bowl to flush. (Can save up to 50 gallons a week per person.)

Replace your regular showerheads with low-flow showerheads. (Can save up to 230 gallons a week.)

Keep your showers down to five minutes or less using a low-flow showerhead. (Can save up to 75 gallons a week per person.)

Turn the water off while lathering-up in the shower. Then turn the water back on to quickly rinse. (Can save up to 75 gallons a week per person.)

Take shallow baths, no more than 3 inches of water. (Can save up to 100 gallons a week per person.)

Replace your older model toilets with new ultra-low-flush models. (Can save up to 350 gallons a week.)

Check your toilets for leaks. Drop a dye tablet or a teaspoon of food coloring (avoid red) in the tank. If color appears in the bowl after 15 minutes, you probably need to replace the “flapper” valve. (Can save up to 100 gallons a week for each toilet repaired.)

Flush the toilet only when necessary. Never use the toilet as an ashtray or wastebasket. (Can save up to 50 gallons a week.)

Never let the water run while brushing your teeth or shaving. (Can save up to 35 gallons a week per person.)

In the Kitchen
Hand wash dishes just once a day using the least amount of detergent possible. This will cut down on rinsing. Use a sprayer or short blasts of water to rinse. (Can save up to 100 gallons a week.)

If you have a dishwasher, run it only when you have a full load. (Can save up to 30 gallons a week.)

Scrape food scraps off dishes in the garbage can or rinse them off with very short blasts of water. (Can save up to 60 gallons a week.)

Never use hot, running water to defrost frozen foods. Plan ahead and place frozen items in the refrigerator overnight or use the microwave oven. (Can save up to 50 gallons a week.)

Rinse vegetables and fruits in a sink or a pan filled with water instead of under running water. (Can save up to 30 gallons a week.)

Run your garbage disposer only on alternate days. (Can save up to 25 gallons a week.)

Around The House
Repair all leaky faucets, fixtures and pipes both inside and outside your home. (Can save more than 150 gallons for each leak.)

When doing the laundry, never wash less than a full load. (Can save up to 100 gallons a week.)

Outdoors
Set lawn mower blades one notch higher since longer grass reduces evaporation. Leave grass clippings on your grass, this cools the ground and holds in moisture.

Mulch, compost and wood chips are available at the Miramar Greenery.

Never hose down your patio or balcony, always use a broom or blower. (Can save up to 100 gallons a week.)

Don’t allow children to play with the hose. (Can save up to 10 gallons a minute.)

If you have a pool, use a cover to cut down evaporation. This will also keep your pool cleaner and reduce the need to add chemicals. (Can save up to 250 gallons a week.)

Take your car to a car wash that recycles its wash water. If washing your car at home, use a bucket of water and sponge. Rinse quickly at the end.

Never allow the hose to run continuously. (Can save up to 150 gallons a week.)

Water your lawn and landscaping before dawn or after the sun sets when there’s less evaporation. Adjust your sprinklers so they don’t spray on sidewalks, driveway or street. (Can save up to 250 gallons a week.)

Consider me your resource for all things real estate!  Selling, buying, upsizing, downsizing, relocating, investing, vendor referrals, shoulder to cry on during renovations and more.  Just send me an email or call me at 619-888-2117.

How to Survive a Bidding War

May 21, 2015

bidding-war-real-estate

Let’s face it, the home-buying process is stressful. Factor in incredibly competitive market conditions and you may need to book a week at the spa just to get through the next open house.

Never fear, here are a few tried-and-true tips that have helped clients’ offers come out on top — even in the most serious bidding wars. (That said, if your offer falls significantly short cash-wise, even the most-savvy tips might not help.) However, when similar offers are on the table, there are some strategies that can help you squeeze out the winning edge.

Remember that not everything is about cash

Seasoned agents know that one of the best ways to land a deal in a competitive market is to appeal to the sellers’ nostalgia for their home. Including a short personal letter with the initial offer can make all the difference. It almost seems too simple, but sharing details in an honest and heartfelt introduction letter about how you would enjoy living in the seller’s property may secure your dream home.

Even though the homeowner is moving on, she probably still has a sentimental attachment to the property — so promising to maintain the architectural heritage of a historic home, for example, could make you a more compelling buyer.

Time is money

When a seller considers offers, she views each one holistically. Make yours more attractive by shortening contract timelines. For example, maybe your offer is $3,000 less than other buyers’, but your proposed inspection period is five days shorter. This aggressive timeline shows the seller how serious you are about purchasing her property.

The worst-case scenario for a seller is waiting out a number of days with no forward movement toward closing and then having the buyer back out. Shortening the contract timelines reduces a seller’s risk, adding an incentive for her to accept your offer.

Show them the cash — upfront

Another way to make your offer attractive without burdening your bottom line is to showcase just how earnest you are to purchase the home. Earnest money is a deposit made to a seller showing the buyer’s good faith in a transaction. If a generous earnest money deposit in your market is a set amount of $20,000, then exceed it by another $10,000.

Put yourself in the seller’s shoes and get creative to make your offer stand out. All of these little details add up and can push your offer to the top of the pile.

Calm down …

“I’m so stressed out with this competitive market that I can barely sleep.”

Whoa. Slow down and take a deep breath. If you’re stressing yourself out to exhaustion about every single house you put an offer on, you’re likely to totally burn out and end up agreeing to a less-than-ideal contract detail just to end the process.

At the end of the day, even with fast-paced market conditions, purchasing a new home is fun and exciting! So relax, let your agent work his or her magic, and start planning your housewarming party.

Robyn Woodman spent several years as a real estate broker in the Seattle area, helping investors build their residential property portfolios. Based in the Pacific Northwest, she is an independent consultant; her writing has been featured on Refinery29, All Things Real Estate, and Modern Loss.

Visit Houselogic.com for more articles like this. Reprinted from Houselogic.com with permission of the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS®.

Consider me your resource for all things real estate!  Selling, buying, upsizing, downsizing, relocating, investing, vendor referrals, shoulder to cry on during renovations and more.  Just send me an email or call me at 619-888-2117.

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