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Posts from the ‘Articles’ Category

25
Jun

Economic update for the week ending June 24, 2017

Stocks stable again this week – Hovering just above and below their all time highs stocks ended the week pretty much unchanged for the third straight week. Energy stocks dropped as the price of oil plummeted to just under $43 per barrel, an 18 month low. Financial stocks rose after the Federal Reserve announced that all banks passed their annual stress test.  The Dow Jones Industrial Average ended the week at 21,394.76, up slightly from 21,384.28 last week. The S&P 500 closed the week at 2,438.30, just above its close last week of 2,433.15. The NASDAQ closed the week  at 6,265.25, up from last week’s close of 6,151.76. 
 

Bond yields – The 10-year Treasury bond closed the week at 2.15%, almost unchanged from 2.16% last week. The 30-year treasury yield ended the week at 2.71% down from 2.78% last week. Mortgage rates follow treasury bond yields so we watch bond yields carefully.

Mortgage Rates remain at lowest levels of the year – The June 22, 2017 Freddie Mac Primary Mortgage Survey reported that the 30 year fixed mortgage rate average was 3.90%, almost unchanged from 3.91% last week.  The 15 year fixed was 3.17%, almost unchanged from 3.18% last week.  The 5-year ARM was 3.14%, also unchanged from 3.15% last week. 
 
California existing home sales numbers and prices accelerate in May – After a disappointing April, existing home sales bounced back in May. On a seasonally adjusted annualized rate single family existing home sales totaled 430,460 in May. That was a 5.4% increase from April and a 2.6% increase from last May. The statewide median price paid for a home was $550,200, up 2.3% from April and up 5.8% from May 2016.
At a regional level the Los Angeles metro region had a 6.9% increase in sales. Existing home sales include all detached and attached homes which include single family, town-homes, condominiums, and co-ops.
C.A.R.’s Unsold Inventory Index fell from 3.3 months in April to 2.9 months in May. The index measures the number of months needed to sell the supply of homes on the market. The index stood at 3.4 months in May 2016.
With home inventory at record low levels prices will continue to rise. When you have more buyers than sellers that is what happens. Earlier in the year I predicted a 10% rise in the median price. I believe we are on track for that. The number of sales at 430,000, which would be much higher if more sellers listed, is the highest level in many years. Many sellers worry that they will not find anything to buy after they sell. With 430,000 sales in California there are plenty of homes selling. Unfortunately, as buyers they just need to act fast and chose from fewer homes. We can’t have it both ways. If homes sat on the market and were difficult to sell there would be plenty of homes to chose from when their home sold. In this market where homes are selling there are fewer homes to chose from and they need to act fast. Every buyer wishes, or should wish, that they bought a home they passed on just months ago as those homes are much more expensive now. So many of our clients have been “priced out” of neighborhoods they were able to afford just months ago. Especially people that hoped to “move up” to a more expensive home.
Have a great weekend!
30
Mar

Beverlywood, Los Angeles – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

via Beverlywood, Los Angeles – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

15
Jul

Seduce Buyers with Savvy Staging – II

As promised, here’s a sequel to my previous article about home staging. Coupled with the earlier tips, this new set of ideas definitely will pump up the sales appeal of your beautiful L.A. home. Absorb these pearls of wisdom, then implement them full force. You’ll be amazed at their selling power.

Go Deep – You want your home looking spotless. Why? Because prospective buyers do. So gather up your vast collection cleaning supplies cloths, cleansers, brushes – all of it. Now rub, wipe, rinse, and scrub everything from floors to fridge until the place shines. Believe me, it’ll make a huge difference.

Remember the Little Things – Believe it or not, buyers are a picky bunch. And they’ll notice all the little things about your home. All those tiny details might not be grabbing your attention, but they’ll be on buyer radar the second they waltz through the door…maybe before. This means, you need to get busy and conceal scratches and nicks with touch-up paint, plaster up those unsightly holes, and shine up all the beautiful brass doorknobs.

Cabinetry Counts – Polish the wood and wipe the glass clean until it gleams. Then add some pizzazz with eye-catching pulls and handles. Appliances should get the same VIP treatment.

Well, that should get you further along down the road to staging success. Even more about staging your L.A. home for sale in future installments. In the meantime, if you have any questions or thoughts on the topic, be sure to send them my way. The comment box is now open.

And, of course, if you want to be connected to the latest info and opportunities in the Beverly Hills real estate market, I’m ready to make it happen.  Call or email today.

Back soon.

Terre Steinbeck

terre.steinbeck@gmail.com

(310) 666-4094  DIRECT

(310) 724-7100   OFFICE

8
Jul

Show Termites the Door…Before They Eat It

If you’re a resident of So Cal, your home likely will have two things: a mortgage and termites. One won’t go away until you pay it off. You can’t pay termites off. At least, nobody has been able to discover their price. But there are ways to keep them from establishing a beachhead in your beautiful L.A. home.

Now don’t go saying you ain’t got none of the little freeloaders. Even if the swarm has yet to pitch their tents, they’ll soon be taking up residence, munching 2×4’s and 2×6’s round the clock. Yes, the mighty mites are on lunch break 24/7. Must have some union.

Five Ways to Keep Termites from Trespassing

Be Warned. For a few hundred greenbacks, you can pick up a termite monitoring system that will warn you about uninvited guests.

Put Up Barriers.  Termite Barriers come in three forms — chemical, physical, and biological.  Any one of these measures will discourage even the heartiest of the breed from entering your premises. “Big deal,” they’ll smirk.  “Plenty of oak next door. Now start flapping them wings.”

Minimize Contact. Wood siding, latticework, door and window frames, and similar structures should be a minimum of six inches above ground. Ground to wood contact is a convenient bridge into your home. You might as well roll out a little red carpet, too.

Keep it Dry.  Termites are fools for dampness. Therefore, make sure there’s no accumulated moisture near your home’s foundation. Gutters, downspouts, and splash blocks are all great at keeping the water – and termites – away.

Don’t Encourage.  You already know what’s on the termite menu. So don’t offer them a banquet by storing lumber, firewood, or other types of wood near your home’s foundation or crawlspace.

If you’d like more info about keeping your home termite-free, feel free to bug me.  Or just fire your questions or comments into the box below. There’s plenty of space.

And, of course, if you want to be connected to the latest info and opportunities in the Beverly Hills real estate market, I’m ready to make it happen.  Call or email today.

Back soon.

Terre Steinbeck

terre.steinbeck@gmail.com

(310) 666-4094  DIRECT

(310) 724-7100   OFFICE

4
Jul

Seduce Buyers with Savvy Staging

Your L.A. home is perfectly priced. All systems go. It’s flying off the shelf into the hands of some eager buyer. Guess again. Quick sales take more than juicy prices in today’s market. Your place has to stand out from the crowd. And that, my friends, takes staging.

This quick-step guide offers you some of the basics. The rest is up to you. You can put this wise counsel into practice. Or watch in frustration as all the well-staged homes within a ten mile radius leave yours in the dust.

Depersonalize – Yes, yes, you absolutely adore your home. Who doesn’t? (Well, I can think of a few.) At any rate, if you’re selling your home, stop thinking of it as your home. It’s their home. Whoever their turns out to be. So depersonalize with extreme prejudice. This means, lose all the stuff that screams YOU. You know, photos of the family picnic, Timmy’s graduation, dog’s first furball. It’s all gotta go, go, go.

De-Clutter – A close relative of depersonalizing. But don’t stress. There’s a place on Ebay for all those little knick-knacks loaded onto your overburdened shelves. You’ll also want to remove carelessly discarded items such as the high-fashion roller blades you flung across the room. Even closets need that clean, clear look. So extract all those dusty garments you haven’t worn since Clinton sat in the oval office.

Neutralize – Your idea of the perfect interior color scheme might be fluorescent green walls with a light peach trim. But, as hard as this is to believe, prospective buyers might have different preferences. Heighten the appeal of your L.A. home by painting it in soothing, neutral shades such as beige. And save the fluorescent green for your Beamer.

Well, that should get you started. More on staging your L.A. home for sale in future installments. In the meantime, if you have any questions or thoughts on the topic, be sure to send them my way. The comment box is now open.

Back soon.

Terre Steinbeck

terre.steinbeck@gmail.com

(310) 666-4094  DIRECT

(310) 724-7100   OFFICE

 

30
Jun

For Every Home, a Buyer

More than a few realtors consider the real estate market one big Kmart. Their credo is simple: drop a home’s price until it flies off the shelf. Apparently, I can’t see the blue light. Or maybe I’m just plain stubborn. But I refuse, REFUSE to kick down the price of a home just to make the quick sale. Call me a rebel, but this L.A. realtor prefers to get the best possible price for my clients. No matter how long it takes.

That’s definitely the case with a beautiful home I had listed.  It’s a sprawling Spanish-style gem with two added guest houses. For three months, hundreds of people swarmed in to look it over. Their opinion was unanimous – the home was a knockout!  But through some glitch in the fabric of the universe, it just didn’t work for anybody. My manager and my co-lister urged me to slash the price. “Uh-uh,” I resisted.  “This home is worth every penny of the asking price. It might take a week, a month, or a half-year. But somebody will come along in due time and snatch it up.”

Well, after three months of waiting it out, that somebody did arrive on the scene. For them, this L.A. home was absolute perfection. And they snapped it up in two seconds flat.

Waiting three months translated to an extra $100,000 for my clients. (Last year, a similar gain was achieved after six months for a client.) All of which goes to show that in the world real estate, patience is indeed a virtue. And as for all you naysayers, I just have one simple message –

Told ya so!

See you next time.

Terre Steinbeck

terre.steinbeck@gmail.com

(310) 666-4094  DIRECT

(310) 724-7100   OFFICE

26
Jun

Sometimes It’s What’s on the Outside That Counts

Whether you’re selling your L.A. home or just keeping it hale and hearty, a good number of you spend endless hours cleaning, sprucing, and decorating the beautiful interior until it shines like the Tiffany diamond. But throughout these noble endeavors, you’re probably neglecting a critically important element in the attractiveness department – the exterior. You might not be able to judge a book by its cover. Homes, however, are another matter. The outside goes a long, long way to enhancing the value and appeal of your beloved property.

When it comes to the outdoor realm, choice landscaping is among the top value-enhancers. Nothing like a well-placed row of cacti to boost your home’s ranchy appeal. Now don’t press the panic button. You don’t need to spend a king’s ransom on landscaper fees. In fact, you can get the job done all on your own thanks to  –

Terre’s Guide to Do It Yourself Landscaping

  1. Make Room for Flora – Widen your flower beds to a width of four to six feet, and populate with colorful flowers.
  2. Don’t Get Caught With Your Plants Down – Plants and other flora can show a lot of wear and tear over time. Replace this dull bunch with fresh foliage, and watch the place liven up.
  3. Grab Some Attention – A unique tree or shrub offers great potential as a focal point.  Align one of these soil-dwellers with a key architectural point on your property. Good spots are a corner of the garage, home, or front yard.
  4. Be a Stickler for Style – Unless you prefer hedges shaped like enormous ice cubes, loose the electric clippers. These are infamous for carving beautiful foliage into geometric monstrosities. Far better to let your inner stylist loose with a hand-powered model.

Now that you’re well versed in the finer points of the landscaping arts, I’m expecting great things from you. If you have your own landscaping wisdom or photos to add, be sure to fire your thoughts into the comment box or send your pics in my direction. And, of course, if you have any questions about this or any other Beverly Hills real estate issue, absolutely send them my way.

Terre Steinbeck

terre.steinbeck@gmail.com

(310) 666-4094  DIRECT

(310) 724-7100   OFFICE