Buying a Home

Buying a Home in Silver Lake? Focus on the Big Picture

Focus on the important features when buying a silver lake homeAll too often, people looking for a home in Silver Lake get hung up on small issues and let a home they would love slip away to some other buyer.

Sometimes it's lack of a fence for the dogs or a "foggy" window that makes a buyer reject an otherwise "perfect" house. These small issues are the things that can easily be changed – like carpet or paint colors, or even counter-tops or light fixtures.

The market is tight right now and buyers are competing for homes. If you have managed to get into escrow, be glad your offer was chosen and do not lose focus on what you want. This is not the time to concern yourself with little things. 

Even if a home needs electrical or plumbing work and the seller refuses to make repairs or credit you to make them yourself later,...

The three steps in the California Foreclosure Process

An Overview of the California Foreclosure Process

When a property owner is no longer able to make their mortgage payments and defaults on the loan, the property goes through a process know as foreclosure. When this occurs, the lender initiates the sale of the property by auction through a third party; called a trustee.

The trustee is required to advertise a notice of default of the property in the newspaper for three continuous weeks. Take a look in the classified section of your local newspaper and you'll see a list of foreclosed properties for...

How The Mills Act Can Save You Boatloads of Cash Every Year on an Historic Home

Wouldn't it be wonderful if the City of Los Angeles looked down and saw which homeowners were hard at work sprucing up the historic homes that make this city beautiful and said, “Hey, let us give you money for that!”  Well, as someone out there shopping Los Angeles real estate or looking for a Realtor, you should know that this agreement does exist between the city of Los Angeles and its property owners. It's called The Mills Act and if you purchase a qualifying property, you could receive a significant tax break in exchange for keeping your historic home well-maintained or restoring it to its original grandeur.

before and after photos of a renovated craftsman home

 What exactly is The Mills Act?

According to California's...

Beating Cash Offers On The Silver Lake Home You Want

how to beat cash buyers when bidding on a Silver lake homeConventional wisdom dictates that home sellers prefer cash offers.

So what is a typical would-be buyer in Silver Lake to do when the competition comes forward with an all-cash offer?

Cash offers may come from any of a variety of deep-pocketed parties: institutional investors, foreign investors, wealthy families or individual investors.

Beyond doing basic due diligence — gathering as much intel as you can about the property and the seller’s needs — if you've found the perfect Silver Lake home and are convinced it is the best property for your family, consider one or more of these tactics:

Bidding...

Buy Los Angeles Income Property Instead of Buying a House

Have been looking for a house in Silver Lake, Echo Park, Eagle Rock, Highland Park – wherever you can find something you can afford? 

Do you really want to spend $700,000 for 690sf of living space just so you can say you own a house?  If you do, that is certainly your prerogative, but why not consider buying income property instead of a house?

The Advantages to buying income property are Many

Let you home pay youBuy an income property to live in while getting help with the mortgage from a tenant or two instead!

You may not realize this, but real estate investors on average pay the lowest taxes of any for-profit group in the U.S.

The deductions and depreciation allowed by the IRS could make your cashflow virtually tax-free.  No, you don’t need to abandon your dream of...

Top 7 Reasons to Love the Mount Angelus neighborhood of Los Angeles

1.  "Hollywood Hills" Living at Highland Park Prices - Many properties in Mt. Angelus are secluded tracts tucked away with their own beautiful gardens and mature trees.  Often you'll find multiple terraces offering panoramic views of Glendale, Eagle Rock and the mountains beyond.  It's very much like the Hollywood Hills of the Eastside with much lower asking prices. Map of the Mount Angelus neighborhood of Highland Park

2. Fascinating History - A woman named Cora Scott Pond-Pope purchased the Mount Angelus property from the Garvanza Land Company, the holders of the original Spanish land grant, in the early 1900's. She began investing in Los Angeles real estate in 1886 and in 1905 we moved her family to the area where her husband and sons started a real...

How long before I can buy Los Angeles home after a short sale, foreclosure or bankruptcy?

Did you end up losing your Los Angeles home to a foreclosure, short sale or bankruptcy?  It’s hard enough for the ‘regular buyer’ to get into a home in the current market, but it’s not impossible for even those who lost their homes to buy another one.  For those would be L.A. home buyers, there is light at the end of the tunnel.

Yes, you have to wait for a while

OK, so you can’t short sell your house today and buy another home next week.  The good news is that there are prescribed waiting periods for qualifying for a new loan, depending on the circumstances of how you lost your last one.  Generally speaking, a foreclosure will keep you out of the market substantially longer than a short sale but extenuating circumstances can shorten the wait.  Take a look at this chart and you’ll be able to see which waiting period applies to you and when you will be able to buy a home again.

waiting periods after distressed home sale in Los Angeles...

Los Angeles Home Price Increases Are Expected to Slow

The recent fast appreciation of Los Angeles homes has some people worried that we are heading into another housing bubble. Data from Case-Shiller as well as the California Association of Realtors shows that the median price of homes sold in Los Angeles rose a whopping 25-32 percent over the last year! Los Angeles Home Priced have Appreciation 31% this year Higher home prices do not necessarily equate to a bubble.  The last boom was due to banks’ irresponsible lending practices and sales of mortgage-backed securities coupled with unwarranted over building of new homes. Think of all the downtown L.A. lofts that ended up being leased rather than sold when the bottom dropped out. This time around, price appreciation is due to low interest rates and a low inventory of homes for sale.

 Los Angeles Homes Prices will level off

...

How Many Square feet are in that Los Feliz house? Are you SURE?

That Los Feliz house may not be as large as you thinkHome buyers usually have some idea of the approximate number of square feet they're looking for in a new home.

It might be a number similar to the home they currently occupy, or it might be a larger number – based on feeling too cramped in their current home.  And of course, some might be downsizing to a smaller home because they want less to clean, maintain, heat, and cool.

You might argue that the buyer doesn't really need to know the square footage. He or she can see and feel the space upon touring the home. And that's true. But not absolutely true.   If a home has been staged well and all "extra" furniture and clutter removed, it will look and feel bigger....

Buying or Selling a Short Sale in Los Angeles – Who Decides Which Offer to Accept?

Who decides which offer to accept? The Homeowner. One  major misconception about short sales that has been repeated so often that people have come to believe it is that all offers are presented to the bank – and the bank's asset manager makes the decision on which offer to accept. Short Sale MythsGenerally speaking, this simply isn't the case. In a Los Angeles short sale, the property still "belongs' to the seller and it is the seller (with the help of  his or her agent, who makes that decision.  The offer is then submitted to the bank along with a short sale package and a request for short sale approval. It is the Los Angeles homeowner who chooses the listing agent and sets the listing price, based on advice from his or her listing agent. As long as that Los Angeles agent is experienced in short sales and has prepared an accurate market analysis, the...
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