Tag Archives: Sonoma County information

Interest rates this week still Spectacular! 7/1 Arm 3.25%, Jumbo Money3.875%

Here in the lovely “Wine Country” housing market you can’t be complaining about the interest rates! If you are retiring in 7 years and perhaps moving to another area then hook onto a refinance as your rate would be 3.125% Wow! Or opt for a 15 year loan and enjoy super low rates and rapid equity build up.

Otto Kobler loan representative.
Otto Kobler loan representative.

“Where’s the Beef?” Sales are flat, Inventory Short.

“Where’s the Beef?” Sales are flat, Inventory Short.

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  Sonoma County selling and buying season here in the lovely “Wine Country” just an hour north of the “Gate” is flat with sales down 2% over last year but the bigger issue–Inventory! Usually March will signal the beginning of the “Selling” season by more homes coming onto the marketplace. March was a GOOD month but instead of being the beginning of an inventory surge–it was the end. March was our best month and inventory has been declining since. WHAT are the reasons? Below is a slide from the California Association of Realtors. I’ve added on the last three.

Reasons for LACK of Home Inventory  I think the “Off Market” or “pocket listings” is an issue but I’ve NOT seen any hard numbers on it. I’m waiting for CAR or perhaps Core-Logic, to come out with a study showing MLS sales vs. recorded sales. I know in our super tight inventory market, Realtors/Agents are always asking to see new listings not yet on the market. We hear of sales being made off MLS all the time. I keep waiting for the law suit which will define this isssue to apppear. Sellers and their Realtor/Agents who state, “They got their price.” really have no idea at how much that “price” could have been! The current disclosures by CAR, reflect this very issue which came out of the ’89 market scarcity.

Continue reading “Where’s the Beef?” Sales are flat, Inventory Short.

“How to Beat Out a Cash Buyer” with Otto Kobler, Summit Funding.

Otto Kobler-Summit Funding
Otto Kobler, Summit Funding showing off his American Spirit at the North Bay Association of Realtors, Santa Rosa Chapter marketing meeting and 4th of July Celebration on Tuesday.

Real Estate Hour favorite, Otto Kobler, of Summit Funding will be joining us this Sunday.

In this hot and heavy real estate market, cash buyers often beat out financed buyers in a multiple offer situation.

Learn Otto’s strategy that helps buyers with financing rise above the cash offers and present a winning offer.

Plus; There are big changes coming to the lending process, and looming interest rate hikes. Otto will fill us in on all of this and more.

Join Mike Kelly and Allison Norman for new and information about Real Estate in Sonoma County, Ca, and around the country, every Sunday on The Real Estate Hour 9-10AM, 1350AM, 103.5FM and streaming live at www.KSRO.com

Otto Kobler Summit Funding, Inc. Branch Manager / Senior Loan Officer okobler@summitfunding.net
Otto Kobler
Summit Funding, Inc.
Branch Manager / Senior Loan Officer
okobler@summitfunding.net

 

Sonoma County Home Affordability….How Much Home Can You Afford…now, versus 2006

June 2 , 2013; Santa Rosa, Ca.

The change in the Sonoma County Real Estate Market was upwards of 60% in some areas of the county, from the height of the market in 2006, to the bottom in 2009.  But, in some Sonoma County cities homes have managed to hold their value amazingly well.  On today’s show we’ll tell you which areas, and why…..

And, We’ll talk about how much home you can afford now…

Tune in to The Real Estate Hour for this, and more local real estate news, every Sunday morning from 9-10am on 1350AM KSRO or streaming live at www.KSRO.com

 

 

 

 

This Week’s Show; Wildfires are Coming…Is Your Home Ready?

5/26/2013 Sonoma County, Ca. on The Real Estate Hour, 1350 am KSRO

Fire Prevention Battalion Chief, Ben Nicholls, joins us on the radio to discuss the steps homeowners in High Fire Areas (State Responsibility Areas, SRAs) should be taking to protect their homes from Wild Fire.

Did you know that, if you live in an SRA, you are required to clear a “Defensible Space around your home? Chief Nicholls will tell us what that means. Here’s a link to help you determine if you are in an SRA,    http://www.firepreventionfee.org/sraviewer.php

Also, great tips for everyone on fire safety in your home.

Join us at 9:15 for this informative and very important topic.

For more information visit; http://fire.ca.gov/

 

 

 

 

90 Energy Upgrades await you Freezing Sonoma County Homeowners! County Financed!

90 Energy Upgrades can be financed through Sonoma County!

Click on the Facebook icon immediately following this sentence and check out their page and make sure you LIKE THEM! Get more information on energy upgrades and how the County of Sonoma can make this happen for you!

 

 

Pete Phillippe, Loan Officer and old wizened one, of Princeton Capital, Joins us to discuss Interest rates,Paying your Home off Quickly and Qualifying!

 

Long time guest and friend of the Real Estate Hour, Pete Phillippe of Princeton Capital, will join us to discuss options which super low interest rates offer the consumer. With rates THIS low (3.25%) a homeowner refinancing may consider saving money while retaining a 30 year  amortized loan or choosing to opt for a SHORTER Amortization schedule be it a 15 or even 10 year loan. One would argue that at 3.25% it’s just cheaper to KEEP the loan at that rate. Why rapidly pay-off a 3.25% loan when you could use the money for reducing say, credit card debt, college debt, etc. MUCH higher consumer credit rates and keep the home rate low and affordable. These questions PLUS MORE!!

Pete’s contact information: 707-829-7490 Direct or 707-481-2737 Cell.  peterphillippe@princetoncap.com

 

 

 

At the end of it’s first year, the Sonoma County Vacation Rental Ordinance has us wondering “what’s this ordinance REALLY all about?”

Russian River Area Realtor and Vacation Rental Ordinance expert, Kyla Brook — and long time Sonoma County Permit Consultant extraordinaire, Tom Havstad return, Sunday 2/12/2012, to fill us in on some strange goings on at the Permit Resources Management Department (PRMD)….hmmm, imagine that.

Do you own a vacation rental in Sonoma County? Have you complied with the Vacation Rental Ordinance…are you paying your TOT(transient occupancy tax)? …if so, did you also apply for a zoning permit? No? Tune in..this show is for you.

Thinking about buying a vacation rental in Sonoma County? Despite the economy, Sonoma County remains a “destination”, bringing visitors from all over the world….which is a great boon for the local economy. In the Russian River area, vacation rentals flourish…and play a vital role in the city’s economy. Kyla Brook, who has been following, and filling us in, on the Vacation Rental Ordinance from its very inception, has some great insight to offer us…and a helpful list of items the vacation rental buyer should be aware of, and should be sure to investigate as part of their due diligence.

And of course, if it has anything to do with Sonoma County permits, zoning, and/or code violation, we haven’t found anyone more knowledgeable than Tom Havstad. Tom knows the ins and outs of the PRMD, the Sonoma County Planning Department, code enforcement, tax assessor, building department…state and county codes, laws and ordinances. He’ll walk us through the requirements of the Vacation Rental ordinance, what to do and what NOT to do, and he’ll bring to light a rather disturbing possible consequence of the ordinance, leaving us to wonder ” What is this ordinance REALLY all about? “

To reach our guests;

Kyla Brooke, MS, CDPE,  Herth Real Estate
707-481-0098 cell, 707-222-6006 office, www.myhousematters.biz

————And———————-

Tom Havstad, Permit Consulting Services

phone/fax:   707-874-2078, cell:  707-695-0857

website: www.permit-help.com, email: havstad@sonic.net

————————————–

Here are some helpful links from the PRMD and the Sonoma County Tax assessor.

http://www.sonoma-county.org/prmd/docs/vacrent/vacation_rental_faq.htm

http://www.sonoma-county.org/tax/tot/faq.htm

http://www.sonoma-county.org/prmd/docs/vacrent/final_ord.pdf

http://www.sonoma-county.org/tax/tot/pdf/transient_occupancy_tax_booklet.pdf

http://www.sonoma-county.org/prmd/docs/vacrent/vac_rental_handout.pdf

http://www.sonoma-county.org/tax/tot/packet.htm

 

 

Join us this Sunday, 2/12/12 as we unravel the latest mortgage relief effort…could THIS be the real game changer??

…………………………………….

Federal Government & Attorneys General reach landmark settlement with major banks

Roughly $25 billion in relief for distressed borrowers, states and federal government.

From the “NationalMortgageSettlement.com” website.

After many months of negotiation, 49 state attorneys general and the federal government have reached agreement on a historic joint state-federal settlement with the country’s five largest loan servicers:

The settlement will provide as much as $25 billion in relief to distressed borrowers and direct payments to states and the federal government. It’s the largest multistate settlement since the Tobacco Settlement in 1998.

The agreement settles state and federal investigations finding that the country’s five largest loan servicers routinely signed foreclosure related documents outside the presence of a notary public and without really knowing whether the facts they contained were correct.  Both of these practices violate the law.  The settlement provides benefits to borrowers whose loans are owned by the settling banks as well as to many of the borrowers whose loans they service.

  • About the Settlement: Learn about the settlement, who is affected and what claims may still be pursued against the banks. Find links to your state Attorney General’s Office to find state-specific information and contacts.
  • Help for Borrowers: Learn how to find out if your loan is affected by this settlement, the timeline for relief, how you will know if you are eligible. Find links to your state Attorney General’s Office to find state-specific information and contacts.
  • News: Read the national news release and find links to your state Attorney General’s Web site for state-specific news.
  • Loans owned by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac are not impacted by this settlement.  You may visit the following websites to learn if your loan is owned by either Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac:

Here’s what the plan will do for homeowners in specific situations;

Mortgage underwater but current with payments. More than 10 million homeowners in the U.S. owe more on their mortgages than their houses are worth. The latest plan would enable people who have been making loan payments on time to save about $3,000 a year on their mortgage by refinancing with lower-interest loans guaranteed by the Federal Housing Administration.

Mortgage underwater and behind with payments. More than $12 billion to be set aside to reduce principal for homeowners who are behind on their payments and owe more than their houses are currently worth.

Victims of foreclosure fraud. The plan will provide payments of about $2,000 a piece to approximately 750,000 families that have been the victim of improper foreclosure practices. Most commonly—routine electronic notarization of documents being transferred from one financial institution to another as part of the foreclosure process–a practice known as robo-signing.

This will most likely apply to people who lost their homes between Jan. 1, 2008, and Dec. 31, 2011.

January 2012 Sonoma County Market Update; Inventory’s down…”under contracts” up….

A month by month, year over year look at the Sonoma County, California Real Estate market. 

Sonoma County’s available home inventory is down 24% over last January…with properties ” in contract” a whopping 42% higher than last year at the same time.  January 2012 hit a 12 month high of 602 homes under contract. However, it’s important to note that about a third of those homes are Short Sales which will take on average 166 days to close. …and, some will not close.  But all in all, it’s a great indication that the combination of low prices, low interest rates, low inventory…and increased consumer confidence, have many buyers down off the proverbial fence.

This is good news for Mike and I as we are busy, busy, busy!!

Properties currently "on the market" by month

Properties entering the market down 10% over last January with a surge in April/May 2011, then a pretty steady drop throughout the remainder of the year.

62% of under contract properties are “bank influenced sales”…Short Sales, or REO (foreclosure) Unfortunately, this program does not distinguish between Short sales which take on average, 5 mos to close and sell at or slightly below market value,  and REOs that close in 30 days or less, and are typically priced low to move quickly. All bank influenced sales will affect market value to some extent, REOs much more so than Short Sales.

Properties under contract (In Escrow) with shaded "bank influenced sales" Short Sale/Foreclosure
Full market, Under contract (in escrow)

More good news…Sold properties up 17% year over year.

Sold properties by month

Still quite a gap between homes on the market and homes sold, but look at the difference between Jan 2011 and Jan 2012.

Supply and demand by month (on the market vs sold)

As we continue to make our way through the surplus of bank owned properties, most of which are in the lower end of the market(Under $350,000) , you can see where the strong market is. The median home price is exactly the same as last January at an even $300,000.  The median price means that half of the homes sold where under that price and the other half were above.  While we are seeing a good increase in activity in the mid range ($400,000-1million), sales are still sluggish. This is why the Median price for “on the market” homes is so much higher than the median “sold” price.

Median price ; "For sale" median vs "sold" median

What this market is missing is the “move-up”market. Those home buyers who, in a normal market, would be selling their “foot in the door” home and using the equity they gained to buy up. For the past 4 years, that equity “gain” is, for the most part, nonexistent.

However, with the strong medical and technology growth in Sonoma County, we’re seeing quite a bit of relocation into Sonoma County. This may be just the boost the mid-range market needs. …Stay tuned.

If you’d like any more information about the Sonoma County Real Estate market, or about your homes value, neighborhood sales data, etc. please take a minute to call or email Allison Norman at 707-799-3617, or Mike Kelly at 707-322-8503 ~ TheKellyNormanTeam@Gmail.com