Money Monday: Financial realities of owning a home

Let’s consider some of the financial realities about owning a home.

homeIn an opinion piece in the Fresno Bee newspaper, the writer made the case for why Congress should keep a tax incentive to encourage Americans to be homeowners. Regardless of your opinion on the matter, the author’s points on the financial positives of homeownership were beneficial and worth a read.

  • “Owning a home is one of the best ways to build long-term wealth, providing both equity accumulation and tax benefits over time. In 2013, the median net worth of homeowner families was $195,400, while the median net worth of renters was $5,400, according to the Federal Reserve.”
  • “Homeownership strengthens communities, encourages higher civic participation, boosts children’s educational performance, lowers crime rates, and improves health-care outcomes. Moreover, homeowners bring more stability to neighborhoods because they tend to move less often.”
  • “Homeownership helps provide predictability. Individuals can enjoy steady and consistent housing costs thanks to the tax incentive that allows them to own a home. That’s because a fixed-rate mortgage payment might not change for 15 to 39 years, while rents typically increase 2 to 3 percent a year.”
  • Read more of this article here: “Want to create wealth? This is one way to do it.”

San Diego County Events for May 19 – 21

What a beautiful weekend coming up! Enjoy the lovely weather and San Diego County area with these great family activities and fun events! And if these aren’t enough events, check out my list of the top 20 must-do activities to do in San Diego here!

San Diego county events this weekendSalsa Under the Stars

Dance the night away with Manny Cepeda and his orchestra in the Headquarters at Seaport’s beautiful out door courtyard from 6 pm – 9 pm. No partner or experience necessary for this free event.

When: Friday, May 19 | 6 – 9pm
Where: The Headquarters at Seaport | 789 West Harbor Dr., San Diego
Cost: Free
More information: theheadquarters.com/events-calendar/salsa-under-stars-16


21st Annual Festival Of The Arts In North Park

21st Annual Festival of the Arts in North Park is a free art and live music festival that also highlights the local craft beer and food community. It will be a fun-filled day of entertainment and fun.

When: Saturday, May 20 | 11am – 10pm
Where: North Park San Diego | San Diego, CA
Cost: Free
More information: northparkmainstreet.com/events/festival-of-arts


2017 How-to Festival

Come learn “how-to” do something new and interesting in quick workshops taught by volunteers from your neighborhood. This interactive community educational event has something for everyone. All ages welcome.

When: Saturday, May 20 | 11am – 3pm
Where: San Diego Public Library, San Diego, CA — various locations
Cost: Free
More information: sdpl.bwcs-hosting.com/cal/event/showEventMore.rdo


Fiesta Del Sol 2017

The 38th Annual Fiesta del Sol will be on May 20- 21, 2017 from 9 a.m.-9 p.m. each day. The Solana Beach Chamber of Commerce has been hosting this FREE two day arts & music festival for 37 years as a kick off to Summer in Solana Beach! The event takes place at Fletcher Cove.

The Belly Up is lining up a great list of musicians to perform over the two day event, which includes local community talent. There will also be a large, fun and exciting Children’s Area set up for families to enjoy rides, games and a climbing wall.

When: Saturday & Sunday, May 20 & 21 | 9am – 9pm
Where: Fletcher Cove Beach Park | 111 S Sierra Ave., Solana Beach, CA 92075
Cost: Free
More information: fiestadelsol.net


Tierrafest Parade and Craft Fair

Come and visit our all-day Craft Fair (9am to 3pm), offering lots of handmade items by local artisans.  The day starts with a Patriot’s Day Parade at 10am, with schools, clubs, bands, businesses and local dignitaries marching or riding, and the day ends with a barbeque dinner (4-8pm) at the Tierrasanta Rec Center together with a fireworks display at dusk.  The Craft Fair and Parade are  free, and children are welcome.  Tickets for the dinner are available at the Craft Fair.

When: Craft Fair: Saturday, May 20, 9am – 3pm | Parade: 10am | BBQ dinner: 4 – 8pm
Where: 10633 Tierrasanta Blvd, San Diego, CA 92124
Cost: Free entrance to the craft fair and parade; tickets available at the craft fair for the closing bbq dinner and fireworks display
More information: Info on the San Diego Union Tribune


24th Southern California Band Festival

The 24th Southern California Band Festival is being held May 20 and 21, 2017 at Old Poway Park. The festival presents 17 adult concert bands from Southern California and Arizona with a new band every hour. The festivities conclude with the Third Marine Aircraft Wing Band starting at 6:15 Sunday. Food and beverages are available. Gift baskets will be auctioned off.

When: Saturday & Sunday, May 20 & 21
Where: Old Poway Park Bandstand | 14134 Midland Road, Poway, CA 92064
Cost: Free
More information: More info


Grand Ave Festival

The Grand Ave Festival, Escondido, takes place in our historic downtown on Grand Ave from Center City to Juniper. Shop from hundreds of vendors for unique hand-crafted gifts and imports, enjoy international cuisine and local entertainment from high school performing arts and future stars.

When: Sunday, May 21 | 9am – 5pm
Where: Downtown Escondido | 100 Grand ave, Escondido, CA 92026
Cost: Free
More information: escondidochamber.org/grand-avenue-festival

Money Monday: Credit card mistakes to avoid

“Credit cards can be a dangerous thing when abused, but when used correctly, they actually offer a number advantages that cash simply can’t match. To make the most of your credit card, be sure to steer clear of these major blunders.”

(Money.CNN.com. “10 huge credit card mistakes.” Maurie Backman. 12 May 2017. http://money.cnn.com/2017/05/12/pf/credit-card-mistakes/index.html?iid=SF_LN)

  1. Paying your bills late
  2. Only making your minimum payments
  3. Making out your credit card limits
  4. Read about 7 other credit card mistakes to avoid here

San Diego County Events for May 12 – 14

For Mother’s Day weekend here in San Diego County, celebrate Mom with one of these fantastic family activities or great events!

San Diego county events this weekend

The Flower Fields at Carlsbad Ranch

It’s the last weekend for the famous Flower Fields in Carlsbad Ranch — and a perfect place to take Mom for Mother’s Day! The fields are open daily, from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., through May 14. Patrons will enjoy nearly 50 acres of colorful displays of Giant Tecolote Ranunculus flowers, which are in bloom for six to eight weeks. The famous fields also include roses, orchids, sweet pea blossoms, petunias and poinsettias.

When: Now – May 14 | 9am – 6pm daily
Where: Carlsbad Ranch | 5704 Paseo Del Norte, Carlsbad, CA 92008
Cost: $14 | details here
More information: www.theflowerfields.com


Quilt, Craft and Sewing Festival

If Mom’s into crafting, take her to the Quilt, Craft and Sewing Festival — this three-day supply show at Bing Crosby Hall at the Del Mar Fairgrounds caters to quilters, sewers, stitchers and crafters looking for inspiration. The expo will feature hundreds of booths and vendors, plus free classes and make-and-take workshops. Admission is $10 for all three days; parking is $13.

When: Friday – Sunday, May 12 – 14 | 10am – 5pm
Where: Del Mar Fairgrounds | 2260 Jimmy Durante Blvd, Del Mar, CA 92014
Cost: $10 for all three days; parking is $13
More information: quiltcraftsew.com/del-mar


Queen Bee Market

More than 100 vendors will line Wyland Hall at the Del Mar Fairgrounds both Friday (4 p.m. to 9 p.m.) and Saturday (9 a.m. to 4 p.m.) for the Queen Bee Market, selling all kinds of good things – from home décor and accessories to clothing, vintage finds, paper art and more.

When: Friday, May 12, 4 – 9pm | Saturday, May 13, 9am – 4pm
Where: Del Mar Fairgrounds – Wyland Hall | 2260 Jimmy Durante Blvd, Del Mar, CA 92014
Cost: $3; military and kids 12 and under are free
More information: www.thequeenbeemarket.com


Hops and Shop Spring Market

Celebrate Mother’s Day weekend at this Miramar brewery’s Spring Market. Shop handmade gifts, participate in workshops, try some tasty sips or enjoy patio games at this festival for the whole family, including dogs.

When: Saturday, May 13 | 10am
Where: 32 North Brewing Company | 8655 Production Ave, San Diego, CA 92121
Cost: Free
More information: www.facebook.com/events/1230036570450235


40th Annual Spring Arts and Crafts Fair

Enjoy the weekend with the 40th Annual Spring Arts and Crafts Fair, a popular tradition in San Diego! A truly ALL-artisan fair, where all the works are hand-crafted and sold by the artists and crafters themselves.

Over 125 hand-picked vendors from across Southern California, with everything from handmade jewelry, soaps, paintings and sculpture, local honey, clothing, pottery, items for the home and garden and much more!

Enjoy live music, a food court, free admission, parking and shuttle.

When: Saturday & Sunday, May 13 & 14 | 10am – 5pm
Where: Bernardo Winery | 13330 Paseo Del Verano Norte, San Diego
Cost: Free
More information: 40th Annual Spring Arts and Crafts Fair

Money Monday: Increase your credit score

Quick ways to up your credit score.

“Most people don’t put much thought into their credit scores until the time comes to apply for a loan. If you expect to need financing in the next few months and aren’t convinced your credit score is high enough to get you approved, you’ll need to act quickly to improve your chances. Thankfully, there are several things you can do to boost your credit score in record time.” (“4 tips to increase your credit score fast.” Maurie Backman. 8 May 2017. http://money.cnn.com/2017/05/08/pf/credit-score-tips/index.html?iid=Lead)

One way to increase your credit score? Ask for an increase in your credit limit. But read CNN’s article for more tips! 

Read all of CNN’s article on increasing your credit score here: “4 tips to increase your credit score fast.”

San Diego County Events for May 5 – 7

This weekend’s events include Liberty Station’s monthly art walk, Cinco de Mayo celebrations, and the Asian Cultural Festival, among all of the great things to do in San Diego County!

And check out my list of the top 20 must-do activities to do in San Diego here!

San Diego county events this weekendFriday Night Liberty

Stroll through Liberty Station at this monthly art walk showcasing artists and live dancing, theater and music. Experience the arts this month with dance performances featuring Malashock Dance, music performances featuring Key of She Spring and Recreational Music Center’s resident bands, inspiring photography, a new exhibit at the Women’s Museum of California welcoming you to Observe and Wonder, and more. More information on the website link below.

When: Friday, May 5 | 5 – 9pm
Where: Liberty Station | 2640 Historic Decatur Road, San Diego, CA 92106
Cost: Free
More information: ntcfoundation.org/community-impact/friday-night-liberty


Fiesta Old Town Cinco de Mayo Festival

Step into one of San Diego’s oldest historic neighborhoods and celebrate the annual Fiesta Old Town Cinco de Mayo in all of its tradition with a ballet folklorico competition, live music, a beer and margarita garden, and lots of lowrider cars along the main street. There’s plenty to do for the kids, including arts and crafts, stagecoach rides, equestrian performances, face painting, a petting zoo, pony rides and lucha libre wrestling.

When: Saturday, May 6, 11am – 10pm | Sunday, May 7, 11am – 5pm
Where: Old Town San Diego State Historic Park | 4002 Wallace St., San Diego, CA
Cost: Free
More information: oldtownsandiegoguide.com or cincodemayooldtown.com


Asian Cultural Festival of San Diego

The 8th Annual Asian Cultural Festival of San Diego is coming on Saturday, May 6th. Live cultural entertainment begins right at 10.

The Asian Cultural Festival of San Diego is the LARGEST celebration of Asian Pacific American Heritage Month in San Diego and features two stages of cultural and traditional performances from a dozen countries and cultures, including Japan, China, the Philippines, Vietnam, Korea, Myanmar, Indonesia, Hawaii, Cambodia, Thailand, Taiwan, Polynesia, and more!

This is a fun, family-friendly, and FREE event!

When: Saturday, May 6 | 10am – 6pm
Where: Mira Mesa Community Park | 8575 New Salem Street, San Diego, CA 92126
Cost: Free
More information: www.asianculturalfestivalsd.com


5 de Mayo Fest

Come celebrate Cinco De Mayo in Chula Vista this Sunday at this beloved cultural event, returning to Chula Vista after four years. The festival will feature more than 20 musical and culture dance performances in addition to music, interactive zones, and of course, plenty of delicious food for the entire family.

When: Sunday, May 7 | 11am – 6pm
Where: J St. Park Bayside Marina | 999 Bayside Pkwy, Chula Vista, CA 91910 
Cost: Free
More information: 5 de Mayo Fest

 

Staying Cool This Summer

It’s only May, and already we’re experiencing too-warm of spring weather in San Diego County! Here’s some tips on how to stay cool this potentially hot summer (and save money and energy!):

BLOCK THE SUN.

If you’re installing new windows, your best defense against sun is heat-reflecting or low-emissivity windows. These windows contain a thin film sealed inside double-pane glass to slow heat absorption in summer and heat loss in winter.

INSTALL FILM ON EXISTING WINDOWS.

One type of film — a window tint — absorbs solar radiation; the other — a reflective film — reflects the sun’s rays and is more transparent than the window tint. Install the type best suited to the climate in which you live. Films are left on windows year-round. Both should last at least 10 years.

INSULATE YOUR ATTIC.

If you live in a climate where summers are hot and winters are mild, also consider installing a radiant barrier — a layer of foil to deflect radiant heat. Radiant barriers, however, do not replace the need for other insulation.

Attach awnings. Buy ready-made fabric or aluminum awnings, or build wood awnings that complement your house. Install awnings on east-, south-, and west-facing windows.

MOUNT OUTSIDE SUNSCREENS.

Block the sun by covering windows that receive direct sunlight with screenings of bamboo, wood, fiberglass, or polypropylene.

HANG LIGHT-COLOR INTERIOR SHADES.

Reflect the sun with shades made with a shiny outer surface. Some fabric shades are backed by light-reflective materials.

INSTALL A WHOLE-HOUSE FAN.

If the humidity in your area isn’t too uncomfortable, mount a whole-house fan in the ceiling just below the attic. These fans draw in cool air through open windows at night and push out hot air through attic vents.

CROSS-VENTILATE.

Exhaust air any time the temperature outside is cooler than it is inside. Make sure air can come in one open window and leave freely through another.

Stay cool!

Money Monday: Cut Down on Your Retirement Costs

Unless you plan on working part-time instead of fully retiring, you may need to cut down on your cost of living in order to live within your means.

retirement

Photo credit: 401kcalculator.org

Here are a few suggestions on how you can cut some costs:

1. Downsize your living space

Not only will downsizing your home most likely help with mortgage and utility costs, but it may also cut down on the required time spent maintaining the house and yard.

If downsizing sounds ideal, please give me a call to see how I can help sell and/or buy your next home! John A Silva – (619) 890-3648

2. Sell unnecessary vehicles

If both of you are retiring, then you may be able to get away with one vehicle for the both of you, cutting significant upkeep, registration and insurance costs.

3. Enroll in Medicare on time

Sign up within the initial seven-month time-frame allotted (three months before your 65th birthday until three months after). Otherwise, you’ll be paying more for those doctor visits.

Read all of Money.CNN.com’s suggestions here: “Slash your retirement costs with these 5 tips”.