Category Archives: Homeowners

Money Monday: When to DIY or hire a professional

What to spend money on (and what to DIY) as a new homeowner

diy home improvement“After the thrill of buying a new home wears off, new owners can get overwhelmed thinking about all the new costs incurred.

“You may be tempted to outsource it all. But maybe you’re not made of money? Besides, there are things that are worth doing yourself.

“For homeowners embarking on something new, it may not be clear what to take care of or how, and when to try to do it yourself and when to call the pros.” Here are some guidelines from CNN:

What to spend money on (and what to DIY) as a new homeowner.

Money Monday: How Homeowners are Paying for Popular Projects

As a homeowner, you typically want to make the place your own by doing home improvements. But what projects are usually done? And for #MoneyMonday, we’ll look at how it’s paid for.

Projects are typically done on a large scale. Here’s what gets tackled:

  • 43% focus on outdoor projecs
  • 31% are bathroom remodels
  • 28% on the unfortunate home repairs
  • 26% done on kitchen remodels
  • 16% narrow in on the garage
  • 5% are about the pool

And how are they paying for it? A surprising 62% of homeowners tap into their savings! (Way to go, financially savvy owners!) For those who don’t have the cash resources, they turn to the following to cover their house project:

  • 30% use a credit card
  • 13% take out home equity line of credit
  • 10% use a vague “other” method of payment
  • 9% liquidate or pull money from investments
  • 5% use a home improvement loan

As far as what you should focus on if you’re thinking of improving your house for the purpose of putting it on the market? Here’s projects in 2017 that had the best resale ROI.

And call me if you’re selling in the San Diego County! I’d love to have an opportunity to interview for the position of selling your home! John A Silva — 619-890-3648.

This infographic can be found here at CAR.org.

California Real Estate Market Update – March 2018

 California home sales tick higher in March as median price reaches eight-month high

urban real estate prices, most live in suburbs

– Existing, single-family home sales totaled 423,990 in March on a seasonally adjusted annualized rate, up 0.3 percent from February and 1.6 percent from March 2017.

– March’s statewide median home price was $564,830, up 8.1 percent from February and 8.9 percent from March 2017.

– Alameda, Marin, San Mateo, Santa Clara, San Diego, and Orange counties all hit a new peak price at $955,000, $1,392,500, $1,615,000, $1,454,500, $625,400, and $824,450, respectively…

Graphics (click links to open):

Note:  The County MLS median price and sales data in the tables are generated from a survey of more than 90 associations of REALTORS® throughout the state and represent statistics of existing single-family detached homes only. County sales data are not adjusted to account for seasonal factors that can influence home sales.  Movements in sales prices should not be interpreted as changes in the cost of a standard home.  The median price is where half sold for more and half sold for less; medians are more typical than average prices, which are skewed by a relatively small share of transactions at either the lower-end or the upper-end. Median prices can be influenced by changes in cost, as well as changes in the characteristics and the size of homes sold.  The change in median prices should not be construed as actual price changes in specific homes.

Read all of C.A.R.’s report here: “March home sales and price report”.

Money Monday: Can you deduct interest on your home equity loan?

“The new federal tax law created a lot of confusion over whether tax filers may still deduct the interest they pay on their home equity loans and home equity lines of credit.

money“The new law suspends the deduction for interest on home equity indebtedness for the next eight years.

“But it turns out the suspension does not apply to all home equity loans (HELs) and lines of credit (HELOCs). It just applies to those that are used to pay for non-home-related things, like paying off your credit card or buying a car. But you can still deduct home equity loan interest that is used to pay for home improvements…”

Read more at Money.CNN.com: “Yes, you can still deduct interest on your home equity loan …”

Who’s Buying Houses?

Last year, in 2017, here’s who buying real estate:

By far, the largest percentage of home buyers were married couples. Check out the other buyers below.

CAR infographic

This infographic is from CALIFORNIA ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS.

Money Monday: Should you upgrade from a smaller to a larger home?

Buying a house instead of renting is, depending where in the country you live, often more cost-effective. But upgrading from a smaller home to a larger home and mortgage? Probably not.

small house to mansion

“There are solid reasons to upgrade your home. For many, it was always the plan. You buy a starter home, and upgrade to a larger one once your family expands. Or your income expands, and you finally move into your dream home. Regardless of your reason, the typical first step is determining what you can afford. A standard rule for lenders is that your monthly housing payment (principal, interest, taxes and insurance) should not take up more than 28% of your income before taxes. A quick and dirty way to check how much you can afford is through calculators like myFico calculator.

“Lenders asses your monthly income, debt, credit score and a variety of other factors to determine how much you can “afford”. However, they don’t look at how your expenses will grow after upgrading to a bigger and better house. (“Forbes.com, “Upgrading to a bigger home? Beware of 6 expenses that will increase.”)

Read Forbes’ article on the 6 things that will increase with a larger place here.

The Perfect Home – Infographic

The idea of the perfect home varies for each individual, but overall there are some strong desires within each generation.

  • Single-family homes in the suburban are a top priority to 55% of gen X-ers and baby boomers.
  • The home doesn’t matter as much as the location for millennials and the silent generation — they both desire walkable communities close to work.
  • 60% of families prefer larger homes and yards.
  • Homes with small yards and a walkable distance from amenities are high on the list for 55% of Americans

Positively Perfect home for the generations

Check out the CALIFORNIA ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS’ infographics here.

Homeownership Has Benefits

Thinking of becoming a home owner?

Homeownership has a few benefits; improved: educational performance, health, and civic participation, and lower crime rates.

Homeownership has benefits

This infographic is from CAR.org.