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The Pet Factor in Real Estate Sales

February 20th, 2017 · Hope Ranch Homes For Sale, Montecito Homes For Sale, Santa Barbara Homes For Sale

If you’ve ever had a dog or cat nuzzle its way into your lap, a bundle of warmth, fur, and happiness, you know how easy it is for a beloved pet to make itself indispensable in your life. We go out of our way to accommodate them — even when making decisions on buying or selling a home or remodeling an existing one.

A new report from the National Association of Realtors shows just how far we’ll go to keep our pets happy. Fully 81 percent of respondents to a NAR survey said that animal-related considerations play a role when deciding on their next living situation.

According to the survey, 99 percent of pet owners said that they consider their animal a part of the family, and 89 percent  said they would not give up their pet because of housing restrictions or limitations. In fact, 12 percent said they have moved to accommodate their pet, and 19 percent said they would consider moving to accommodate their pet in the future.

Six out of 10 U.S. households either have a pet or plan to get one in the future, with dogs the clear favorite: 83 percent of pet owners report that they own a dog; 43 percent own a cat; 9 percent own a bird, reptile, amphibian, arthropod, small mammal, or miniature horse; 8 percent own a fish; and 5 percent own a farm animal.

I represented a high end sale recently where the one and only consideration for the buyer was if the house would be appropriate for her fairly large dog.  I’ve also learned that when creating a video for a listing any pet clips included in the production can make the video. Pets can make a house a home.

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The 10 Deadly Sins of Selling Your Home

February 16th, 2017 · Pricing Strategically, Real Estate News, Santa Barbara Real Estate

Looking over Santa Barbara towards the Pacific and Channel Islands

  1. Buying a Replacement Home before selling your house: It’s far better to sell your current home first then endure the inconvenience of moving to an interim rental, and owning and paying for two homes when you only want one.
  2. Statistics show time and again that homes that are priced properly when first brought to market sell at higher prices, oftentimes with better terms and conditions, and in a shorter time frame. “Testing the marketplace” with an inflated over market value asking price is not the best strategy.
  3. Failing to get a “Termite” or other indicated reports before listing a home for sale:   Sellers who know the condition of their home before they sell are in a better position to negotiate a firm sale because they can disclose existing reports on the property to buyers before they make an offer.
  4. Putting a home on the market before it’s spruced up: Buyers and real estate agents remember what they see. Their first impressions are the lasting ones.
  5. Refusing to reduce the listing price that is too high for the market: It’s hard to be objective about the value of your home. Overpriced listings often take a long time to sell. They often sell for less than they would have if they were priced right to begin with. It’s natural to want to get the most money possible.  If you find that you’re priced to high for the market reduce your price sooner than later. The longer it sits on the market unsold, the lower the ultimate selling price is likely to be.
  6. Refusing to counter a low offer. The price buyers offer is not the most important part of their offer – if they’re willing to negotiate. Sellers want to sell high: buyers like to buy low.
  7. Insisting on being present when the home is shown to prospective buyers.  Buyers are reluctant to say anything negative in the seller’s presence. It’s best to leave your home when it’s being shown.
  8. Listing with a contingency to find a replacement home. It’s like saying your home might be for sale.  Otherwise buyers could wait in vain for unrealistic sellers to find an acceptable replacement home.  List your home with a provision that you may need to remain in possession and rent back the property for a period of time after closing.
  9. Setting up a complicated showing procedure that discourages showings. The easier it is to show a home, the more often it will be shown. There’s a direct correlation that the more showings the home receives the less time it takes to sell.
  10. Refusing  to do anything to get your house ready to sell. When you sell a car it’s wise to have it detailed to look it’s shiny best to get the highest price. The same concept applies to houses. Buyers pay a premium for homes that are in move-in condition.
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Santa Barbara Real Estate Market Trends 2017

February 10th, 2017 · Goleta Real Estate, Hope Ranch Real Estate, Montecito Real Estate, Santa Barbara Real Estate, Santa Barbara Real Estate Market Trends

Santa Barbara Real Estate Market Trends for January 2017. This graph was prepared by Fidelity Title Company in Santa Barbara. The graph reflects the number of sales for the month for southern Santa Barbara. (Carpinteria to Goleta) Click on image to enlarge.

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540 El Bosque in Montecito Open Sunday from 1-4

February 5th, 2017 · Montecito Homes For Sale, Montecito Real Estate, Montecito Realtors

2elbosque540dec2016

Asking Price: $2,950,000. Open Sunday (1-4)  February 12, 2017.  Two Story Farmhouse built in 1925. Currently features two downstairs bedrooms with two full baths. The attic has been converted into two smaller bedrooms with bath. This home is on .82 of an acre on a flat lot. The property is gated and also offers a two car garage and one bedroom guest house with kitchen, laundry area, and bath. Located close to the Upper Village in Montecito off of East Valley Road.  For more information, or a private tour, contact us via phone text or email.

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New California Water Conservation Requirements

February 3rd, 2017 · California Real Estate, Hope Ranch Real Estate, Montecito Real Estate, Santa Barbara Real Estate

On January 1, 2017 a new California Civil Code: Senate Bill No. 407 Chapter 587 requires that all homes built on or before January 1, 1994 must be equipped with water conserving plumbing fixtures including low flush toilets (1.6 gallons per flush) , showers (not more than 2.5 GPMs), and interior faucets (not more than 2.2 GPMs).

The Bill requires that a seller or transferor of a home, multi-residential, or commercial property disclose to a purchaser or transferee in writing the specific requirements to replace these fixtures. The Bill also requires to make specific disclosures in this regard. This most likely will factor into negotiations where the seller could remedy the issues, or the buyer  accepts those conditions and takes on the responsibility to make the upgrades. Understandably this should be documented to protect all parties involved.

Locally, the City Council of Santa Barbara on December 6, 2016 passed a regulation banning lawn watering with limited exceptions as we go into our sixth year of a drought. This regulation takes effect on January 1, 2017.

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Santa Barbara “Live” Real Estate Statistics

February 1st, 2017 · 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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Museum of Exploration and Innovations

January 30th, 2017 · MOXI Museum, Neighborhood News, Santa Barbara Real Estate

MOXI – the Museum of Exploration and Innovations in Santa Barbara is gearing up for it’s grand open in early 2017! Located near the train station on lower State Street MOXI provides an interactive experience with a focus on Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics (STEAM).  17,000 square feet of exhibits designed to engage visitors. The building is the creation of the late architect Barry Berkus and completed by the AB Design Studio.

The exhibits areas organized into seven content areas called Tracks (Tech, Sound, Light, Speed, and an Interactive Media Track).  Floor staff and volunteers will be there to facilitate the experience.  MOXI’s third floor opens to a Sky Garden and the site of the Whitewater exhibit, a giant water feature that explores water pressure and fluid dynamics, as well as a weather orchestra with instruments powered by wind, sun, and humans.  MOXI, the Wolf Museum of Exploration and Innovation will be open daily from 10am to 5pm. Adults $14, children 3-10 $10, and under 2 free. Individual memberships start at $90 annually.  MOXI

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Santa Barbara Real Estate Trends

January 21st, 2017 · Hope Ranch Real Estate, Montecito Real Estate, Santa Barbara Real Estate

Santa Barbara Real Estate Market Trends through December for 2016. This graph was prepared by Fidelity Title Company in Santa Barbara. This year is reflected by the thicker purple line with diamonds. The green line reflects 2015, where in May of 2015, it appears the southern Santa Barbara real estate market most peaked based on the number of homes sold for that month. The light purple line reflects 2013 which shows the highest number of sales per month going back to 2010. The graph reflects the number of sales for that month for southern Santa Barbara. (Carpinteria to Goleta) Click on image to enlarge.

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Supreme Court Rules on Real Estate Dual Agency

January 19th, 2017 · Dual Agency, Hope Ranch Real Estate, Montecito Real Estate, Santa Barbara Real Estate

For the first time in history, homebuyers are deliberately creating dual agency situations as many refuse to work with anyone but the listing salesperson. The thinking being that they may get a better deal working with the listing salesperson when actually they may be creating a possible conflict of interest. How can the listing salesperson negotiate the best deal for you when their fiduciary obligations are to the seller?

In 2016, a surprising trend emerged almost everywhere in the country. When buyers call about a listing that is unavailable or unsuitable for their needs, they have no interest in hearing about other properties – instead agents are constantly hearing the refrain: “We’ll just contact the listing agent directly.” This shift is just another sign that clients have not been educated about the benefits of having a fiduciary relationship with their buyer’s agent.

In Horiike v. Coldwell Banker, the California State Supreme Court ruled that for in-house deals, that the agency (Coldwell Banker and its respective salespersons in the transaction) had a fiduciary duty to both the seller and the buyer. This ruling could limit the ability of large firms to do in-house deals, raise transaction costs due to increased litigation and force agents to disclose “sensitive information about the client’s motivations or the salesperson’s personal beliefs to the other side of the transaction. Sadly, agents divulge this type of information all the time.

Couple this with pocket listings, lax agent attitudes toward dual agency issues, and a recent California Supreme Court decision changing dual agency requirements in that state, and you have a perfect storm that could fundamentally transform how Realtors conduct their businesses. Realtors refer to themselves as agents, but when it comes to the agency law, the brokerage is the “agent,” not the individual salesperson.

The best way to avoid agency issues is to ask, “Whom are you advocating for and what are your legal obligations in terms of what you can and cannot disclose?” Most real estate attorneys believe the solution to the dual agency issue is to work with a buyer’s agent exclusively.

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Santa Barbara Film Festival 2017

January 13th, 2017 · Santa Barbara, Santa Barbara Film Festival, Santa Barbara Real Estate

2SBFilmFestivalPoster2017 The 32nd annual Santa Barbara International Film Festival  poster celebrates architecture and it’s link to cinema. This year’s poster was created by Barbara Boros and Bob Blackwell.

This year’s celebrity attendees include Denzel Washington, Emma Stone, Ryan Gosling, Jeff Bridges, Casey Affleck, Isabelle Huppert, and Michelle Williams. For a complete list of special events, galas, films, free screenings, panels, and educational programs click here: Santa Barbara Film Festival 2017 Program

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