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Summer Solstice in Santa Barbara

June 25th, 2016 · American Riviera, Mark Lomas and Kirsten Wolfe, Neighborhood News, Summer Solstice

For More Information about the Summer Solstice Celebration in Santa Barbara visit their site at: Summer Solstice Celebration in Santa Barbara 2016

Enjoy the video below, “A Sense of Place: Public Art in Santa Barbara,” that offers some footage of past Summer Solstice Parades in Santa Barbara (begins around 6:25 on video). But, the whole video is extremely enjoyable to watch!

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Real Estate News You Can Use

June 24th, 2016 · Hope Ranch Real Estate, Montecito Real Estate, Santa Barbara Real Estate

For the Real Estate Curious

The Complicated Psychology of Buying and Selling a House

Home Sales and Taxes – What Will You Have to Pay?

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Santa Barbara Ocean and Harbor View Property

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Hedge Wars in Santa Barbara?

June 23rd, 2016 · Santa Barbara Real Estate

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Are Your Views Protected in Santa Barbara?

A while back the Independent magazine in Santa Barbara ran a piece that discussed overgrown hedges and view rights – the article mentioned that, “the City of Santa Barbara was pondering whether front yard shrubs be twice as high as the existing ordinance – which it ignores anyways. What’s the result?  Leafy battles aka “Hedge Wars” have pitted neighbors against neighbors. Some neighbors haven’t spoken for decades. And woe to the innocent homeowner who buys into one of these combat zones. Forget about going next door for a cup of sugar.”

Imagine, you just closed escrow on a home with gorgeous ocean views and your looking out the picture window and notice the guy downslope planting one of those fast growing hedges that will block your view. Where some cities have passed view protection laws Santa Barbara has not.  In worst case scenarios often time it means going to court. Some people have gone so far as to pay the down slope owner for a view corridor that runs with the title on the property. You may need an attorney.

At an open house recently I overheard the realtor there tell a prospective buyer that the one story house in front of the property could not build up into the property’s view. That may not be true. Unless, there is something to the effect that the view is protected in the deed of the one story house  in front in favor of the upper property that the two homeowners have agreed to in the lower neighbor’s deed that runs with the property there are no view guarantees in Santa Barbara at this time.

View Rights in California

Homeowner’s Rights to View

View Dispute Resolution Process in Santa Barbara

Santa Barbara View Ordinance Methodology

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Santa Barbara “Live” Real Estate Statistics

June 22nd, 2016 · Santa Barbara Real Estate, Santa Barbara Real Estate Market Trends, SB Real Estate Statistics

Carpinteria: 93013, Summerland: 93067, Montecito: 93108, SB Westside: 93101, SB Westside: 93109 SB Eastside: 93103 (Riviera), SB Eastside: 93105, Hope Ranch: 93110, Goleta:93111. Goleta/county: 93117, and Santa Ynez: 93460
real-time real estate market research  
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Income Growth, Mortgage Rates Propel Homebuyer Optimisim

June 13th, 2016 · Hope Ranch Homes For Sale, Montecito Homes For Sale, Santa Barbara Homes For Sale, Santa Barbara Real Estate

 Here’s a look at recent news of interest to homebuyers, home sellers, and the home-curious.  “Miramar Beach” by local Santa Barbara artist Chris Potter

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 Americans are feeling better about the housing market than ever before, though May’s lackluster jobs report could dampen some of that enthusiasm as the summer progresses.

That’s according to Fannie Mae’s most recent monthly Home Purchase Sentiment Index, which climbed to 85.3 last month, the highest in the survey’s history. The number of respondents who reported having more income than they did a year ago increased from the previous month, as did the number who expect home prices to keep rising. The share of respondents who think mortgage rates will keep dropping in the coming year was also up from April.

But the economy may be giving some consumers a case of the jitters, with slightly more respondents expressing concern about losing their jobs than in April. And while May’s disappointing employment numbers do present some cause for concern, there were nearly 5.8 million open positions in April, an all-time high .

CURRENT INTEREST RATES | JUNE 10, 2016

CONFORMING RATES ($200,000 – $417,000) 0 POINT 30 Year Fixed: 3.625% (3.70% APR) 7/1 ARM: 3.125% (3.19% APR)
CONFORMING (HIGH-BALANCE) RATES ($417,001 – $625,500 cap by county) 0 POINT 0 Year Fixed: 3.625% (3.70% APR) 7/1 ARM: 3.125% (3.19% APR)
JUMBO RATES ($625,501 – $2,000,000) 0 POINT 30 Year Fixed: 3.750% (3.82% APR) 7/1 ARM: 3.125% (3.19% APR)
RATE TRENDS Rates are FLAT TO BETTER compared to last week. Rates are SAME compared to last month. Rates are LOWER compared to one year ago.

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“New Listing!” Really?

June 10th, 2016 · Hope Ranch Realtors, Montecito Realtors, Padaro Lane, Santa Barbara Real Estate, Santa Barbara Realtors

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Somewhere on Padaro Lane in Southern Santa Barbara

What could be more disappointing than to discover a “new listing” for an area you’ve been frantically looking in and then find out it’s not new. Happens all the time, right?

A popular ruse for marketing homes that aren’t selling is relisting them to give the appearance that it’s a “new listing.”  Everybody loves new listings! But, sometimes the homeowner decides to reduced their asking price and wonders what can they do to get more attention? Relist it as a new listing.

There are Board of Realtors and MLS systems that are on top of this and have rules in place so the MLS data cannot be manipulated and abused. Most Multiple Listing Systems have what’s called Cumulative Days on the Market. This reflects the current listings DOM (Days on the market) for the current listing and previous DOMs for that property. The relist ruse tries to gin the system towards buyers, agents, and third party platforms like Zillow, Trulia, and Realtor.com. Basically this ruse confuses and frustrates prospective homebuyers that are looking for new listings.

Nowadays buyers are more savvy than ever and want to know the “MLS History” of the property, something that right now is not always that easy to find online. More often than not you need to ask a real estate professional to go on their MLS to discover what the property’s MLS history really is.

Where this innocently occurs is when the owner of a property relists with another real estate professional. The new agent lists the property – and for them – it is a new listing even though the property had been listed previously on the MLS with someone else.

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The Ironic Truth About Zillow Zestimates

June 10th, 2016 · Hope Ranch Homes For Sale, Mark Lomas and Kirsten Wolfe, Montecito Homes For Sale, Santa Barbara Homes For Sale, Zillow Zestimates

It’s true, Zillow’s CEO Spencer Rascoff, sold his home for 24% less than what it said on his website.

Zillow’s “Zestimates” can be tweaked if you know how to add improvements to Zillow’s valuation methodology. You need to be the owner, or owner’s agent to do this, or an unscrupulous hacker. Actually you don’t even need to be a hacker, anyone can do it. Zillow does offer valuable information they gather from the Public Records. But, you’re not going to get a bank to loan you money based on a Zillow “Zestimate.”

Where homes are very similar (condos/townhomes) sometimes Zillow’s “Zestimates” can be helpful. But, if you live in an area where the home styles vary, for real estate agents (your best source for what the true value of your property is) Zillow’s “Zestimates” can drive you crazy. Many home sellers and buyers  give credence to Zillow’s “Zestimates.”  Unfortunately the degree of accuracy of Zillow’s “Zestimates” can vary dramatically from neighborhood to neighborhood. Which to real estate professionals is what make this video so hilarious, and wonderfully ironic…enjoy!

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Housing Recovery Picks Up Steam

June 3rd, 2016 · Hope Ranch Real Estate, Montecito Real Estate, Santa Barbara Real Estate

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The Wall Street Journal reported this Wednesday (June 1,2016) that Home Prices are back to near record highs across the U.S. amid rising demand and supply constraints, a sign that the lopsided housing market recovery of the past five years is gaining strength.  The S&P/Case Shiller national home price index says the recovery has clawed it’s way back to within 4% of it’s 2006 peak. A steep rise from the near 30% decline at the bottom in 2012.

After years of volatility home prices have grown at around a rate of 5% since early 2015.  That bodes well for sellers heading into the peak home selling season of May and June but could pose a challenge for buyers, especially first timers who may be priced out of the market as supply, particularly among starter homes, remains thin.

Bottom line? The housing market is gaining strength and all indicators point to an even stronger real estate market moving forward. For more information about the Santa Barbara real estate market contact Mark Lomas and Kirsten Wolfe. TheRealEstateConcierge@gmail / 805.845.2888  The Real Estate Concierge

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The Marc

June 1st, 2016 · Santa Barbara Lifestyles, Santa Barbara Real Estate, The Marc

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Luxury Living on Upper State Street in Santa Barbara. Pre-leasing in July for September move in. Currently under construction at 3885 State Street. The Marc is the first multi-family residential building to be built in Santa Barbara in 30 years. Some of the Marc residence features are:1-2-3 bedroom homes ranging from 646 – 1,026 square feet, Modern, open living spaces with designer-selected finishes, Oversized windows for optimal natural light and spacious closets, and Private patios and balconies for seamless indoor-outdoor living. For more information visit their website at: The Marc

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Memorial Day

May 30th, 2016 · Santa Barbara Real Estate

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Memorial Day May 30, 2016    Remembering those that gave their lives for what they believed. Never forget.  And,  to be grateful that we are fortunate enough to be able to celebrate their lives for all that they’ve done. Thank you to my father who served in the Calvary in WWII and to my brother Chris who served in Viet Nam. Two tours, bronze star/ Navy Seal. Photos of the Viet Nam Wall and West Beach in Santa Barbara.

American War Deaths: American Revolution: 4,435  War of 1812: 2,260  Mexican War: 13,283  Civil War: 618,000 Spanish War:2,446

World War I: 116,516  World War II: 405,399   Korean War:36,574   Viet Nam War: 58,220  Gulf War: 383   Iraq/Afghanistan War: 6,607

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