REAL ESTATE INDUSTRY ADVISORIES
June 25th, 2017
Building No Match For Superman?
While Superman was known to leap tall buildings in a single bound, he might get his cape caught on this skyscraper just now built in LA, known to be the tallest building west of the Mississippi.
Tiny Housing In New York
So rents here in San Diego from $2400 to $3000/mo. getting you down? Check out this 302 sq.ft. model in this price range, only to be outdone by capsule hotel room in Japan.
April 7th 2016
Reverse Gears (?)
The expense of raising Donnie and Marie make you proud but penniless empty nestors now. What should have been a savings nest egg of golden nuggets going into retirement was whittled away by the high cost of college and other modern day necessities. With a mortgage payment eating away at half your retirement income, what's an otherwise successful couple to do? Enter the reverse mortgage. With all that hard work now history, take your home and turn it into a productive use for the rest of your lives. A reverse mortgage will completely eliminate that mortgage payment and avoid the potential of losing that nest called home sweet home. Contact us today for a free custom printout emailed to your door. We only need your names, birthdates, and property address.
March 31st, 2016
New Mortgage Products To The Rescue
For self-employed would-be buyers and homeowners seeking better mortgage terms who are tax return challenged, new 30yr. fixed rate products are now available, and only require either bank statements or a simple unaudited profit & loss statement. Rates start below 3.75% (3.875% APR). These loans are not saleable to Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac so there are other credit restrictions/declines a borrower may tyically run into that may not be the case with this programs, so call 619-390-4042 or write for details and loan summaries.
December 7th, 2015
While San Diego commuters at rush time might disagree, a new report shows San Diego was ranked #1 in the nation under the category of Least Wasted Fuel per Auto Commuter. Our neighbor to the north got #1 Worst Traffic Congestion and a good part of the reason is that planners there canceled much of new freeway systems in hopes more would head to public transit.
November 25th, 2015
The Rain Falls Mainly On the Plain
But back in 1916 and today in San Diego, our topography says there are no plains to drain the rains. One hundred year flood maps are designed to be warnings to obtain flood insurance. Most all lenders now require flood insurance if the borrower's property is in a flood plain. But back in 1916, when the City hired a rain-maker to combat the drought plaguing our region, no insurance was required, and the scientist that was offered $10k to bring the rain-- which turn to floods-- was not paid at all. Click here for the full story
November 11th, 2015
V.A. Mortgage Lending Robust
While the credit markets are closed this Veteran's Day, we are open to help save vets thousands in closing costs (see next column where the savings for one vet was $6000 compared with his credit union). V.A. lending remains strong here in San Diego. In fact, it was the 2nd largest area in the country for VA lending volume during the first half of 2015, reaching $3.4 billion. When receiving a loan quote elsewhere that also shows cash to close, contact Mesa Pacific for our no closing cost quote.
November 2nd, 2015
Opening The Coffers
Fannie Mae is opening up the window for more borrowers by allowing 5% down payments on loan amounts above the conventional loan limit of $417,000. Call or write for more details. 619-390-4042.
May 23rd 2015
Home Improvements To Rethink
There may be a nice large wall above the fireplace to mount your new TV screen, but don't plan on using your fireplace. Here are some do's and don'ts on home improvements.
April 22nd, 2015
“Green Acres Is The Place For Me...But Give Me Park Ave”
That was the singing debate between two couples on the comedy show Green Acres way back when. But it appears the appetite for luxury new homes is still on Park Ave, NY. Here are excerpts from Coldwell Bank Report on High-end properties sales across the nation:
“The median price of all Manhattan apartments hit a new all-time high of $920,000 in the fourth quarter of 2014, up 20% since 2011…the average size of new apartments is up 30% in the past seven years to 1,647 square feet in 2014. And these newly developed properties average $3,805,000. Skyscrapers along “Billionaire’s Row” in Midtown are responsible for many of the eye-popping transaction values at the highest end of the market, including sales for $70 million at 960 Fifth Avenue, $71.3 million at 740 Park Avenue, and the city’s new record high price of $100.5 million for the two-floor penthouse at 157 West 57th Street, aka One57, which has seen 13 sales over $40 million and is more than 70% sold out at prices exceeding $6,400 per square foot. 432 Park Avenue, at 1,396 feet the second-tallest building in New York, has sold more than 50% of its units. Asking prices there average $23 million, or $6,900 per square foot.” But if “green acres” includes Beverly Hills, CA. then Jeb Clampit of the Beverly Hill Billies wins the prize for top sale if this property listed at $195 million sells (see full report). Here in San Diego, certainly Rancho Santa Fe qualifies as a “green acres” area, and it ranked in the top 20 in listings above $5,000,000, while La Jolla was 4th place in number of sales about $1,000,000.
March 14th, 2015
Demand Is In The Air (and at construction sites)
The commercial marketplace here in San Diego had some very positive projections about values for the year 2007, and had assumed job growth and consumer demand would continue to push up lease demand and values. But we all know what happened next. Today, it is no longer projections but actual building activity, as S.D. Transcrip reports new research by UCLA Anderson Forecast: "The commercial real estate market along the California coast is booming, and demand for commercial office space, industrial warehousing, apartment buildings and condominiums is likely to stay high through at least the end of 2017."
March 12th 2015
Mellinnials On The March (?)
For a number of economic reasons, many of the mellinnial generation have been missing in action. But recent surveys suggest they ready to take that step into home ownership. Here in San Diego, that step gets more difficult as time goes by (another 6% increase in home prices this February is one of those hurdles). With Fannie Mae renewing their 3% downpayment program, it is no time like the present to jump in and see what home ownership looks like on paper. For one thing, owning a home is an important part of any retirement plan, since the loan is paid off in 30 years, while rents keep their relentless march upwards. Locking in these low fixed-rates now sets a buyer up with a solid long-term plan and avoids the pain of rent payments over a lifetime. For instance, in 1985, a home that rented for $1000/mo. would amount to double that here in 2015 to $2000/mo. What the inflation rates will be in the future is anyone's guess, but a 30yr. fixed-rate loan of $407,000 at 4.25% with just 3% down is a payment of $2004.16, which will be gone and paid off in 30 years. We all needed help on the down payment on our first home, and gifts are now allowed on conventional loans with 5% down and on FHA with 3.5% down. Contact us today for a printout and a list of properties that fit your criteria. It is the first step in setting up the goal of home ownership. You will also be surprised about the cash rebates you receive when using our services (see Recommendations column to the right).
January 8th 2015
President Obama just announced a 1/2%reduction in the annual premium FHA charges, which may increase both purchase and refinance activity. The market responded by raising rates slightly, figuring this will increase supply of existing mortgage-backed securities. FHA has been losing it's volume vs conventional financing after continual hikes in these premiums, and see Fannie Mae's recent re-introduction of their 3% minimum down program as even greater competition.
November 14th, 2014
TAX MAN COMETH (?)
When you tax something you get less of it (ie,Japan raised sales tax recently and consumers there bought less and now in a recession), and that certainly applies to capital and investment. Rule changes are now being considered on tax deferred capital gains, one of which is the elimination of 1031 deferred exchanges entirely. Already, individual owners of rental property have had their loss deductions trimmed back based on their gross income. At $150,000 income, losses cannot be deducted from the current year but are deferred until sale. If new legislation whittles away the benefits of 1031 tax deferred exchanges, it will whittle away values. This is an odd proposal since government planners have focused on helping to raise slumping values over the last 6 years, protecting the lending industry from declining asset values. Memories are short since back in 1986, Congress decided to end loss deductions on real estate limited partnerships, which accelerated the savings & loan crisis. They later had a much better idea in 1995 to eliminate capital gains on sale of a homeowner's primary residence, and the real estate industry helped create a boom in jobs via remodeling and resale of homes held for 2 years. As always, consult with a professional tax prepayer involving tax laws.
October 25th, 2014
VACATION RENTALS LOOK GREAT--ON PAPER
Real estate investors are required to follow the money if they hope to make it big, and vacation rentals here in San Diego hold great promise when viewed on a weekly rate basis. But before you project all that rental income for the year, make sure it is legal to do so. Many condo associations bar rentals under 30 days, as vacation folks tend to be more routy than owners within the project. One investor found out the hard way in Downtown San Diego after a Superior Court judge ruled that a homeowner violated the rules prohibiting weekly rentals and was required to pay $106,000 to the homeowner's association.
August 25th 2014
SUB-PRIME LENDING ON THE REBOUND
Sub-prime and alternative loan documentation programs have been around since the '80s, but were cutoff following the mortgage meltdown of 2007. The problem in the start of the 21st Century was that these programs morphed badly, stretching the limits on qualifying to where one only had to be breathing to get a loan: no down payments, lousy score, and no need to even state your income, a recipe for disaster. Unlike those programs, having equity in the game of qualifying is still important, but now a borrower with skimpy tax returns can qualify using bank statements, and there are programs for low credit score borrowers. Contact us for details. .
February 21st, 2014
THE GIFT JUST GIVEN BY FANNIE MAE
The underwriting on conventional financing for gifts by relatives has always been the same, until now. Taking a page out of FHA guidelines, Fannie Mae is now allowing the entire 5% down payment to be in the form of a gift. With conventional lending prices far better than FHA, this should open new doors. Contact us today on how to structure a family gift.
January 28th, 2014
Real estate values, both residential and commerical, depend on job growth. Proposals are flowing to raise the minimum wage to help those on the bottom rung: the unskilled laborer. But does raising the minimum wage aid in job growth, or make it worse, and if an increase to $10.10 is good, why not double or even triple it to $30/hr? Famed economist Milton Friedman described minimum wage laws as the worst thing you can do for the unskilled, as fewer jobs, not more, will be available. Minimum wage jobs are jobs that help train the unskilled into a higher skilled job.
December 13th, 2013
FHA LOAN LIMITS REDUCED
Beginning in January, the maximum loan limit here in San Diego will be reduced to $546,250. Believe it our not, you can still receive a loan maximum of $1,050,000 on a 4 unit property with 3.5% down.
VA NON-ALLOWABLES, A MOST MISUNDERSTOOD ITEM BY SELLERS AND THEIR AGENTS
A common misconception by listing agents when advising their sellers about accepting a VA offer is that VA does not permit the veteran to pay various fees like escrow fees, so the seller has more to pay in a VA transaction. But the point missed is that these fees are allowed as long as mortgage and escrow fees do not exceed 1% of the loan amount. That is an easy barrier to overcome when you choose Mesa Pacific, where the wholesale lender pays all fees, including escrow and title fees.
GOOD NEIGHBORHOODS REAP HEALTH BENEFITS
Granted, living in a high crime area can be hazardous to your health, but a new study out finds that your chances of having a stroke can be affected based on the quality of your neighborhood and your social interaction.
FOLLOW THE MONEY: WHERE THE INCOMES ARE HIGHEST
While Congress wrestles with having to raise the debt ceiling another trillion dollars, all that borrowing and spending has raised the standard of living in key areas of the U.S.and they center around Washington D.C. where average household earnings exceed $100,000. The Business Insider has the details on this and other areas of the country,
BUILD IT AND THEY WILL COME?
High density living in expensive cities. What's a planner to do for affordable living? Futuristic models of big city living has humans living in micro micro apartments of 100sq.ft. New York City is already re-zoning and allowing 250sq.ft apartments.
August 30th, 2013
FHA GOES EASY ON BORROWERS WITH PAST DEFAULTS
HUD has just now released new guidelines that will allow borrowers with a bankruptcy, foreclosure or short sale to qualify for a new loan after only one year if they can show a loss of 20% or more income over a minimum of 6 months. On a short sale, if no late payments were involved, there is no wait period. VA, by the way, has only a 2 year waiting period, while conventional has a 4 year wait, unless the borrower puts 20%. Contact us for more details.
April 2nd, 2013
FANNIE MAE/FREDDIE MAC LOOSENS REGS ON LOAN MODIFICATIONS
Apparently both Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are counting the backlog of seriously delinquent loans and making an offer borrowers can hardly refuse: modify the loan terms on seriously delinquent loans (minimum 90 days delinquent) owned by these two entities without any evidence of hardship. These now include second homes and investment properties. Click here for details.
March 5th 2013
NOTHING BUT THE TERMS
As the old lycric line from the Jay Giles Band goes: "First I look at the purse," so too must real estate sellers in assessing which offer to accept. All MLS listings display an input item which typically looks like this: "Terrms: Cash, Conventional, FHA, VA." The order is not without significance, as cash offers are king, followed by conventional financing. The reason FHA and VA are the last two mentioned is because they are the last two forms of financing to avoid if the home needs some work and the seller does not have the means to fix it. VA underwriting, in fact, requires that most all repairs be made prior to funding. FHA has a little more give here, but not as much as conventional underwriting. Equally important is the amount of down payment the buyer has. If it is thin, like FHA's 3.5% of sales price, or none, like VA, there is no manuever room on the appraisal if it comes in lower than current comparable sales show.
February 14th, 2013
BIG PRICE-TAG ON FHA FINANCING COMETH
Starting June 1st, mortgage insurance premiums for FHA financing will become a permanent fixture on all loans funded above 90% loan-to-value, and for eleven years for those under 90%. This is an expensive departure from rules in place since 2000, where the MI dropped off automatically after the loan had reached 78% loan-to-value. While FHA note rates remain attractive in the 3.50% range, the additional 1.25% annual premium that eventually went away as early as 5 years from the funding of the loan, is certainly loosing it's luster. FHA still beats the field of conventional alternatives when lower credit scoring comes into play (even 620 can qualify a high balance loan applicant), but VA stands alone in pricing as it carries no mortgage insurance costs.
January 5th, 2013
GOVERNMENT GIVETH MORTGAGE INSURANCE BREAK
Rather than just saying "no" and repealing the tax break for mortgage insurance, lawmakers agreed to continue the deduction for 2013, providing the borrowers' annual income is under $110,000. If you are somewhere between $101,000 and $110,000, it is on a declining sliding scale, so check with an accountant on this. Also see MGIC chart for details.
RESIDENTIAL BARGAINS~BANK OWNED PROPERTIES
Currently, there are 189 bank owned properties in San Diego County. Click here for the list of foreclosed residential
properties. The list can be simplified by describing what you are looking for:
1) Areas of the County
2) Minimum bedroom/bath
3) Detached, condos, or both
4) Max list price
5)Any other details
For details and photos on any of these properties, click here and send an email request.