Green is the new, well um, green…

We’ve been inundated with recycling, water conservation and low environmental/carbon impact for some time now. It

has begun to enter the new construction industry with energy efficient, green technology and rooftop solar being part of the construction process.

Buyers entering the market are looking for these features and those buying up or down are looking for these features. They are simply smart and, more importantly, save money and the environment.

Please check out the attached article on the 10 Reasons why this is becoming the norm. Enjoy!

10 Reasons Green Is the New Normal in Real Estate

DIY Home Improvements that Pay Off

Do you want to improve the value of your home, but keep the costs to a minimum, thereby, giving you a higher. Are you handy and like to do things around the house?

Well, here is a great article about some sensible do it yourself weekend improvements that pay off with equity gains.

Can you Paint your kitchen cabinets or add crown molding? Then this is for you! Simple things that you can do whether or not you are looking to sell your home.

Check out the full article:

High-Resale Value Projects You Can Tackle In A Weekend


High-Tech upgrades

Smart tech home updates? It’s a no-brainer…

It’s a smart bet for two reasons to consider adding some “smart home” technology in with your remodeling and update plans.

First, the cost of some of the techology is minor compared to a kitchen or bath remodel. For instance, a smart thermostat or wifi light switches.

Second, it adds to the desired features that buyers are looking for in a home. With all other features being equal, a home with smart technology is going to win the day.

Check out this excellent article from RIS Media on the topic:

8 High-Tech Features to Include in Your Next Remodel

Low income housing does NOT affect property values…Really!

Palm springs cathedral city real estateRecently, I have heard from friends, clients and neighbors concerns regarding low income housing developments going in next to existing single-family homes. The concern is that high density rental housing will decrease market valuesHome or neighborhood.

The long story short is that this could not be further from the truth! Don’t take my word for it, check out the attached article from RIS Media:

New Study Shows Low-Income Housing Does NOT Impact Property Values


HomeSmart in the News (aka, I Have to Brag…)

Palm Springs Cathedral City Real EstateI’ve been saying it since I joined HomeSmart that HomeSmart has cutting edge Technology that ultimately benefits clients and makes agents work easier and more professional. This is why I confidently stand my my statement, “I make Real Estate Fun and Easy!

Furthermore, Three HomeSmart franchises were ranked on RISMedia’s 2016 Power Broker Report for their success in 2015: HomeSmart Phoenix/Denver/Palm Springs

Don’t take my word for it! Check out this Cover Article from RIS Media:

Technology Sucks…But It Doesn’t Have To: HomeSmart International Takes Integration to a Whole New Level

‘Smart Home’ Tech Wins the Day

Savvy homeowners know the value of Smart Home Technology and the efficient use of utilities and convenience these *_S2A7187tools offer homeowners. Home Improvement stores have offered this technology for a few years now, but these appliances are now integrating with Smart Phones for mobile control of one’s home’s features.

I, for one, LOVE my Nest Thermostat that synchs with my Smart Phone for location so my AC or heat is automatically turned on when returning home. This is only one example of the many smart home features now being offered.

It is such a big draw that some homebuyers are willing to pay for for a home already wired with Smart Home Tech. Check it out:

Source: Washington Post

A study by Coldwell Banker found that 71 percent of buyers in a sample of 1,250 American adults want a “move-in ready” house and that 57 percent of those buyers looking at older houses would consider them updated – and more appealing as move-in ready – of they have smart-home features already in place. Fifty-four percent say that if they had to choose between otherwise identical houses, one with smart technology, the other without, they’d buy the smart home. Sixty-one percent of millennials would favor smart-tech homes, as would 59 percent of parents with children living in the house.

For Full Story

Fast Energy Efficiency Tips

Sassy, smart and simple! That’s my guide for blog posts. I dislike going to a blog post and seeing it is a LONG articlePalm Springs Cathedral City Real Estate that takes up valuable time to read. In my book, the shorter the blog post, the more likely I (or others) will read it!

So, with that being said, I LOVE the attached article because it breaks down very easy steps we can take to become more energy efficient. Some of these are “no nonsense” but some are not, however, they warrant being repeated.

  1. Insulation is “numero uno”
  2. Heating/Cooling
    1. Ceiling fans
    2. 4 x 4 rule
  3. Clean air filters & vents
  4. Energy efficient appliances
  5. Small actions add up

Check out the full article:

Ask the Expert: What Should Homeowners Know about Energy Efficiency?

Credit Score Improvement for Homebuyers

Credit history and scores are a critical factor in obtaining a home loan, coupled with income and downpayment. Credit scores and application data is Final cool and Tiffanyfed to a program that filters, computes and underwrites the file so that lenders can process them efficiently. A program does not know about your mitigating factors that affected your scores last year, so it is pretty important to be on top of some of the factors that affect our credit scores.

There are some simple things we can do as consumers that will have a significant impact on our credit score. Check out the full article from Inman News:

10 ways homebuyers can improve credit scores

Your Resourceful REALTOR® making Real Estate Fun and Easy!

HR 3700 – Housing Opportunity Through Modernization Act

Good news! New legislation has made FHA certification and recertification of Condos less cumbersome and

Palm Springs Cathedral City Real Estate

smoother. All branches of the Federal Government have signed this legislation into Law.

Why is this important an important piece of legislation?

Condos and specifically, FHA financing, represent a significant part of buyers entering the market or reentering the market after a Foreclosure or Bankruptcy.

Currently, in Palm Springs there are only 6 FHA certified condo developments out of approximately 250 condo developments. That is a lot! That is dismal news to a first time home buyer that may only be able to afford a condo and doesn’t have a large down payment. FHA is an answer, but only if the condo development is FHA certified.

We should see these numbers go up in the coming years, but as we know, it takes government time to put into place changes that are legislated. However, that being said, it will make a difference in the long run.

Here is a full article from RIS Media:

New Condo Legislation to Bring Relief to Homebuyers

Here is the Law from the 114th Congress:

Home Value Perception vs. Reality

I have some good news and some bad news.

Home values are determined by the Market, not Zillow or Trulia! These arePalm Springs Cathedral City Real Estate benchmarks and, unfortunately, based on inaccurate data. “Like for like” is the rule of thumb for appraisals! Some of the reasons these data sources are not accurate is because they go out 1/2 mile radius, but not necessarily like for like. What do I mean by that statement? I will use my home as an example:

I live in Cathedral City, directly across the street is Rancho Mirage. The home values in Rancho Mirage are higher for the same or comparable property. These data sources do NOT take this into consideration when giving an estimate of value. So, when I pull up my home, it includes properties in Rancho Mirage, which skews the figures to a higher estimated value. Also, comparable sales need to come from the same gated communities or subdivisions. If no comparable sales can be found there, then they will go out from there, but again, like for like is the golden rule.

The long story short is my home’s value, as computed by those two sites, shows about 5% higher than the subdivision’s comparable value.

So, why am I bringing this up? Because value perception does NOT equal actual value. A home’s value is determined by what a willing an able buyer and motivated seller whom negotiate upon the price and terms of the sale. Appraisals are used for valuation when a mortgage is used to purchase or when the property is being sold by an estate, executor or bank.

Properties are usually over priced because this piece of information may not be provided when listing a home. Agents don’t determine value, seller’s don’t determine value and buyers don’t determine value. Real Estate professionals can provide current statistics from the MLS and provide an opinion, usually expressed in a value range, but they don’t determine value. We have valuable market experience, but every sale is different just like every home is different.

The market determines value. It isn’t as back and white as most of us think. But, please don’t take my word for it, check out this great article from RIS Media on the topic:

Rose-Colored Glasses: Homeowners Value Properties 2 Percent Higher Than Appraisers