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Santa Barbara Real Estate

April 24th, 2014 · Mark Lomas and Kirsten Wolfe, Montecito Real Estate, Santa Barbara Real Estate Market Trends

The Santa Barbara Real Estate Minute with Kirsten Wolfe

 

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Santa Barbara Historic Homes Tour

April 24th, 2014 · American Riviera, Mark Lomas and Kirsten Wolfe, Santa Barbara Historic Homes

Sunday, May 18, 2014 (11am to 4pm) by Advance Reservations
Featuring several of George Washington Smith’s GRAND MONTECITO HOMES in the Spanish Revival Style.  Ticket Price: $60 Members $70 Non-Members
For Reservations click on the link above, or call: 805.961.3938
 
Between 1918 and his death in 1930, George Washington Smith designed more than 60 residential structures, mostly in Santa Barbara, including a home originally designed for renowned violinist and composer Henry Eichhelm, which is included on the tour and features rarely seen frescoes created by famed Mexican muralist Alfredo Ramos Martinez.  Also on view is the Culley house, which is a departure from Smith’s earlier Andalusian-influenced designs, as it’s a rectangular structure with a cantilevered porch that is more akin to Monterey-styly, which shows his influence becoming more Spanish Colonial than Old World Spanish.  In addition, the bus lead tour will stop at several other homes, where visitors can see Smith’s distinctive aesthetic first hand.
 
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Santa Barbara Weekend Open Houses

April 24th, 2014 · Open Houses, Team Santa Barbara

Santa Barbara Weekend Open Houses

Click the link above to view all the Open Houses in Santa Barbara today!

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Santa Barbara “Live” Real Estate Statistics

April 23rd, 2014 · Mark Lomas and Kirsten Wolfe, Santa Barbara Real Estate Market Trends, SB Real Estate Statistics

real-time real estate market research
Something new for Santa Barbara Real Estate! Live Statistics! Sales asking prices for the last 7 days, and the last 90 days. If you’d like to take the “Pulse” of today’s market here’s where you’ll find it.

Iif you’re not familar with Santa Barbara’s Zip Codes, here they are:
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

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10 Things Real Estate Agent Won’t Tell You

April 16th, 2014 · Mark Lomas and Kirsten Wolfe, Real Estate Humor, Real Estate News

Jonathan Burton wrote in the Wall Street Journal Market Watch April 2, 2014 that there are Ten Things Real Estate agents won’t tell you.  Not a whole lot of breaking news here so I thought it might be fun to break down, and either refute or agree with Mr. Burton. Google Jonathan Burton for the whole article.
                                   Mr. Burton’s Top Ten List:
1. I’m Using Your House to Sell Myself.
I’m not sure if I understand Mr. Burton here when he says,”Some Agents See Only the ME in HOME!” OK, there are plenty of over inflated egos practicing real estate. Many of which you can see on cable television. But why would someone waste their time and money pumping up their ego when they could be making a sale?
2.You Might Never Get the Chance to Buy Your Dream House!
Yes, if you do not have adequate resources or a good credit score you may have trouble competing in today’s real estate market.  Any real estate agent not properly preparing you for what lies ahead is not helping you. Also, the market has recovered to where we’re starting to see Pocket Listings unofficially come onto the market.  Mr. Burton sees this as a threat to prospective buyers since there does not appear to be a level playing field, and to some degree Mr. Burton is right. This is why working with a local professional came make all the difference!
3. Our Commisions Aren’t Set in Stone
If Mr. Burton were to review the California Association of Realtors listing agreement he’d see that this is spelled out in the listing agreement. Historically the standard residential commission has been 6 per cent – which is typically split between the two brokers (unless the broker has both sides of the sale which oftentimes is called “Double Ending” ).Then if the agent is not the broker, that side of the commission is split again. Also, there are “Discount Brokers” that will list your house for a smaller commission. Lots, acreage, and commercial properties may also have different commission ranges.
4.Your Home Isn’t Worth As Much As You Think
Here Mr. Burton may have some insight. Some agents will tell you whatever they think you’d like to hear your house is worth to get the listing.  Then wait for the seller to drop the price to what the market will pay. That’s no way to list a home for sale. Pricing it as close to the threshold of what it eventually sells for - when you first list the property - will get you the best price for your property. That would take an ethical realtor that knows what they’re doing.
5.Young Buyers Don’t Want Your Old House
Mr.Burton explains that young buyers don’t want to do a lot of work and repairs. Who does? Unless of course you’re willing to pay less for something you can add value to?   Generalizing what young buyers wants is at best curious, and humorous.  In fact, I think Mr. Burton is way off the mark without going into recent surveys about what young buyers are really looking for.  In the end, it’s all about price.
6.Another Agent Can Get You More Money
Mr.Burton suggest you should chose a successful local real estate agent with a good track record. Duh! 
7.I Don’t Know Anything About This Neighborhood You’re Interest In
Avoid picking a realtor from online advertising platforms like Trulia and Zillow. Agents who pay for leads may not work in the areas you’re interested in but will be happy to try. And, the reply to 6 above is the best methodology.
8.I Can Win A Bidding War
Mr. Burton suggests if the real estate market you’re interested in is experiencing “Multiple Offers” you need a local real estate agent that’s been around the block and will ask their client for their absolute highest bid so there’s no confusion in the fog of a bidding war. And, once again, the reply to 6 is appropriate here too!  This is getting redundant!
9.I Might Be Fired Soon
Mr.Burton suggests that some agents are hanging by a thread, and their next deal could make it sink or swim for their real estate career. Mr. Burton wants you to consider how could that effect your working with this kind of real estate agent.  What the ….?  Has the Realtor suicide rate gone up recently? Am I missing something here?  When did this become a problem?
10.I’d Like To Dump You As A Client
Mr.Burton suggests that since Realtors work on commission they don’t want to waste their time with “looky lous,” and other tire kickers.  Sometime real estate agents will dump their client onto another real estate agent.  OK, that’s true, and Mr. Burton is like maybe One or Two for Ten here on insightful things your real estate agent won’t tell you, but if Mr. Burton were my client I’d….
 

 

 
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Santa Barbara Real Estate Statistics

April 16th, 2014 · Mark Lomas and Kirsten Wolfe, Market Conditions, Santa Barbara Real Estate Market Trends

Santa Barbara Real Estate Statistics for Montecito, Hope Ranch, Santa Barbara, Carpinteria, Goleta, and Summerland

The Median Sales Price rose to $983,700 up from the end of February when the Median Sales Price was $970,700. Open Escrows went up from 73 in February to 113 in March.
The “Median Sales Price” is the middle price in a series of sales, where half of the sales are of lower value, and half are of higher value.
The “Average Sales Price” are averages calculated by adding together the number in a set divided by the total number of values.
When evaluating prices, many real estate econonmist look at the Median Price rather than the Average Price, because unusually high or low values skew an average.
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Carpinteria Home and Garden Tour

April 4th, 2014 · Carpinteria, Carpinteria Real Estate, Italian Street Painting Festival

For more information , call 805.684.9328 or visit www.CarpinteriaBeautiful.org

 

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Santa Barbara Water Concerns

April 4th, 2014 · Mark Lomas and Kirsten Wolfe, Montecito Real Estate, Santa Barbara Real Estate

In early March the Montecito Journal reported that the Montecito Water District (MWD) unanimously approved a declaration of emergency water shortage – Ordinance 92- on February 11th, mandating no new water connections, plus restrictions on pools, hosing of hard surfaces, home car washes, and correction of leaks, plus fines of up to $1000 for repeated violations.

Although the Board did its job – some suggest belately – the “Community Perception” is that there is precious little sympathy in the greater Santa Barbara community for Montecito’s predicament.  The  lushly landscaped estates, surrounded by stone walls, gardens, hedges, and greenery have defined Montecito for the last 100 years, but are seen as non-essential to many.

DESALINATION?  In 1992, faced with a five year drought, the City of Santa Barbara completed a $34 million dollar seawater desalination plant.  With abundant rainfall in 1991-93 the plant was put on standby. In 1997, Montecito and Goleta opted out of the project and the City sold the plants membranes to Saudi Arabia reducing it’s maitenence costs.  Currently, desalination is not viewed by the City of Santa Barbara Water Resources as a planned source of water, but simply as an extreme emergency drought supply backup.

An expenditure of $17 to $20 million  would be needed to re-activate the desalination facility in Santa Barbara, including new state of the art membranes, and other components that need to be updated.

Where do we get our drinking water from?

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Aerial Drone Video of Santa Barbara

April 2nd, 2014 · Mark Lomas and Kirsten Wolfe, Santa Barbara Real Estate

A great video created by Ian Boyd, music by: Bees

 

“SkySeeing” over Santa Barbara aboard Phantom Air from Ian Boyd on Vimeo.

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Santa Barbara Real Estate Sales Information

March 30th, 2014 · Mark Lomas and Kirsten Wolfe, Santa Barbara Real Estate Market Trends

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