Real Estate News
History … Legally buy your wife or husband their dream home
Published Thursday, 05-Aug-2010 in issue 1180
For the last month I have used this space in response to readers whose questions primarily surrounded the selling of real estate in tough times. This week, let’s talk about the other side of the coin. Buyers. If sellers are having a miserable go of it, it follows that in the grand yin and yang of global capitalism, buyers must be doing well, right? Ummm...let’s just see about that...
It’s certain that the current combination of selection, price and low cost of financing will not last forever. If you’re waiting for things to dramatically change to offer even lower prices or lower interest rates you do so at the risk of finding little to choose from when the time comes. Truth be told, unless you’re in the market for ultra-pricey new digs, the bottom of the market has in all likelihood, come and gone. Come into our offices and see what you are qualified to buy. You may be surprised!
If you’re a first time homebuyer or adding to an investment portfolio, you best busta move and buy soon. Right now, it’s all about finding the right house. We grabbed three currently active properties from our crop of fine ARG listings to illustrate the muscle you can flex in the marketplace today.
You spend: $235,000 FHA loan with 3.5% Downpayment
You dream: To live out your HGTV fantasies and fix up your own place
Your location: City Heights canyon cottage @ 2484 Laurie Lane 92105
Your scratch: Just $1540/month including mortgage insurance
You need: $4500/month or $54,000/year Combined Household Income
This could be your dream home and with possible tax credits and tax deductions you may possibly own this home and begin to build equity in your dream for less then your current monthly rent payment.
You spend: $385,000. Available with 5% downpayment
You dream: of sipping caipirinhas from the terrace/ counting boats on bay.
Your location: Pinnacle Museum Tower - Downtown Marina District
Your scratch: $3357/month including HOA fees of $797/month
You need: $8600/month. $103,200/year Combined Household Income
Resort like living, building equity and having tax breaks all in one. You can’t beat that!!
You spend: $399,000 to $425,000 Value Range
You dream: Of pano bay/ocean views/fresh upgrades in established area.
Your location: Upscale north Point Loma condo community of Pt.Loma Views
Your scratch: $3040/month including HOA fees $238/month
You need: $8000/month $96,000/year Combined Household Income
Living like this is what brought you to San Diego, ocean and city views while sipping wine before bed. Now that’s San Diego.
Your contact:
Keep in mind these are realistic homes for most of this papers readers. It’s time you started sharing in another one of San Diego’s jewels, home ownership. Remember, rates and terms are subject to change. Your debt to income ratio and FICO score may affect your ability to secure a mortgage…so don’t be shoppin’ for any big ticket toys if you intend to buy a house soon. Don’t forget to swing by the State of California’s site for Homebuyer Tax Credits. The credit will run out soon, but don’t be shy about applying as long as applications are available at this site:
Keep in mind competent agents in this office and many others are here as a resource for you. We can walk you through this process and walk you through the front door of your new dream home.
Of course, all the tax credits, low rates and prices won’t secure you a home under competitive conditions, so here are our “Tips from the Street” on how to get the house you want:
1) Never waste your own time. If you are convinced you can buy a well-priced property at 20% below list, you’re wrong. If the house you want is an REO (already foreclosed on by a lender), there are likely multiple offers submitted. If your agent knows the market and knows the process, you may be advised to offer over the asking price. If this is the home you’ve been waiting for, listen to your agent.
2) The best deals in the market are shortsales when yours can be the first offer in. (Or the next one in after the first buyer gets fed up with waiting for a response from the seller’s lender and cancels escrow.) The keys to short sales are patience and perseverance. Make sure you have the patience and that your Realtor has the perseverance. Be prepared to defend your price with facts including your own professional appraisal of the property. Don’t be surprised when the lender attempts to extort a “cash contribution” from the seller, buyer or agents to satisfy the demands of some invisible investor. Negotiate it. Away, if possible. These contributions (as if they were given freely) are little more than pocket-picking by a lending industry who having soaked taxpayers for billions aims to teach the seller and buyer one last lesson at the end of the ordeal. JOIN A CREDIT UNION!
3) If you want your agent to focus on your purchase like a laser beam, consider a Buyer’s Broker Agreement. These contracts obligate you to pay your broker on any home you purchase within a specific time period and geographical area. They work in your favor only when you select the correct person. Interview at least three or four and hire one as you would any professional - based on his or her experience, references and whether you can see yourself spending hours and hours with this person in situations from highly stressful to highly frustrating and ultimately downright joyous.
Jim Abbott is President and Managing Broker for the Abbott Realty Group. CA Dept. of Real Estate Brokers Lic. 1842472. Send your real estate questions to or call 619-234-3995.

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