Real Estate During the Holidays

 

Hi. Linda Grigorian.

First, I’d like to extend, just in case I didn’t get a chance to reach out to you personally, a Happy Thanksgiving.

I hope you had a wonderful holiday with family and friends, ate too much food, drank some wine. I ate too much food and drank some wine… it was a wonderful time. I hope you had the same.

Now, we have a couple more weeks until we head into another holiday and the question then I’m getting a lot now is, “Hey Linda, how’s the market going to be during the holidays?” Well, generally, it’s a good time home buyers and sellers and I’ll tell you why. A lot of sellers may choose to wait till after the new year to list their homes, which is fine, but for sellers who are listing their homes now we know that you are going to have less competition we know that we are faced with buyers who are serious, qualified, and ready to make a move now. It’s sort of a win-win situation for both parties involved. Not to mention homes decorated for the holidays look beautiful. They’re welcoming they’re warm, cozy… buyers really like that kind of stuff. So something to take into consideration. It’s a wonderful time of year. Let’s take advantage of it.

Give me a call, we’ll get together and talk about your goals.

Linda Grigorian.

Talk to you soon!

9 Helpful Real Estate Tax Breaks! Pay attention!

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As the year ends and the Holidays approach, we are reminded of our favorite Uncle… Uncle Sam… well, maybe not, but it fits in with the holiday “can’t stand your relatives, always take, take, take, must drink and eat too much to tolerate” theme.

Although April 15 is tax day, many Americans who expect a refund want to file sooner and get their money sooner. Now, I’m no CPA, but if you are a homeowner, here are a few friendly pointers to help ease the pain (wink) and ensure you reap all the tax benefits.  Speak with your accountant on which ones can benefit you specifically.

  1. Mortgage Interest Statement – IRS Form 1098
  2. Property Tax Statements
  3. Uniform Settlement Statement (HUD-1) -For homes sold or bought within the last year. Received from escrow.
  4. Contractor receipts for energy efficient home improvements. -Under the Nonbusiness Energy tax Credit, homeowners who have made improvements that fall within the list of energy efficient upgrades may ne eligible for tax credits.
  5. Utility statements for home office. -Must be “regularly and exclusively” used for business.
  6. Moving Expense Receipts
  7. Cancellation of Debt Statement – IRS From 1099 -For homes lost to foreclosure, short sale or deed in lieu of foreclosure.
  8. Mortgage Credit Certificates (MCC) – If you bought a home in the last few years using a Mortgage Credit Certificate issued by a local housing authority.
  9. Income and Expense statement for rental properties.

There you have it!

Again, always consult with your tax attorney or CPA regarding your tax liabilities and implications when you buy, sell, short sell or lose a home to foreclosure.  Now, who wants to give ol’ Uncle a big kiss?

 

 

 

HEY SMARTY PANTS!!!

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WARNING:  THE INFORMATION BELOW IS HONEST AND RAW… IF YOU ARE SENSITIVE AND HAVE NO SENSE OF HUMOR, DON’T BOTHER READING IT…

Hey Smarty Pants!

I know you got the internet. You are clearly aware of Google. And those *awesome* real estate apps you have on your phone… *love* them!

And as much as I truly trust you have done a bunch of research, please let me help you.

In a time when patients tell their doctors what medicine they should take based on a magazine or television ad they saw, we are forgetting the necessity of a professional.

My job is to negotiate.

My job is to sell homes.

My job is to help you.

Let me…please.

Please don’t say things to me like:

“I know EXACTLY what my house is worth because Zillow says… (insert Zillow’s wrong info here)”

“Well if the seller REALLY wants to sell, he would blah, blah, blah (insert unrealistic action here)…”

Or even:

Think you should only work with listing agents because you are so sure you will get a better deal.

You know everything there is to know about real estate because you have been talking to your cousin’s neighbor’s great uncle who used to be in real estate 20 years ago.

Or the “buyers” who are real estate experts because they bought a program from a late night infomercial.

You are not buying a meat dehydrator here, people!

Buying a home is serious business and it should be approached in a serious and organized manner.
If you REALLY want to buy a home, let’s get together and make a plan!

Do you search for homes based on school zones?

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“Three out of 5 homebuyers surveyed by realtor.com said school attendance boundaries would be a factor in choosing a home. Most of that group said they’d be willing to go above budget or give up amenities to have their children go to their school of choice.” as reported by inman.com last month.

Among homebuyer who ranked school districts and zones as a priority, 53.3% said that they would be willing to pay anywhere from 1-20% above their original budget. These buyers are also willing to compromise on their “wants” in order to buy in a specific zone.

Let’s face it…this is just another “location, location, location” moment.  Especially in cities like Burbank or La Canada, which have excellent school districts, demand remains high as buyers are eager to make purchases based on schools.

Greatschools.org is a wonderful site that also allows you to search for homes for sale based on a specific school.  It works in partnership with Zillow.

Being a mother of 2 young children, I understand the impact a school has on our children’s education.  If you are hoping to buy in a specific school zone, I am here to help you.

To read the entire article from inman.com:

http://www.inman.com/2013/07/29/survey-confirms-homebuyers-willing-to-pay-premium-to-be-near-preferred-schools/

Burbank in da house! (no pun intended…well maybe)

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Home prices are on the rise in Burbank

“Home sale prices in Burbank continued to rise last month as the number of bank-owned and short-sale properties put on the market dropped dramatically from a year ago, according to local real estate statistics.” as reported by the Burbank Leader a few days ago.

There were only 5 properties in Burbank last month that sold as short sales.  There were a whopping 32 in July of 2012, according to Eric Benz, President of the Burbank Association of Realtors. The number of foreclosed properties for sale was also down.

The Burbank Leader states:
“…the median price of a single-family home in Burbank climbed to $595,000 compared to $470,000 a year ago, an increase of about 26.5%.”

“For condominiums, the median price was $363,000, a 17.1% jump from $310,000 in July 2012.”

The rising home prices due to low inventory have resulted in homes having more equity than previous years.

If you are a seller, the time is hot now before the holidays. Prices are up and buyers want to settle into their new homes before the holidays.

To read the entire Burbank Leader article, click the link below:

http://www.burbankleader.com/news/tn-blr-home-prices-are-on-the-rise-in-burbank-20130816,0,2978850.story

For Pete’s Sake, People!

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I’m kind of an old fashioned gal… handshakes having credibility, I enjoy actual phone conversations, talking things out and connecting with people personally.

I also like to use a cool, old gadget called a camera.  Now, I get that in our modern world of technology, many people take tons of pictures with their phones.  And I’m not saying that a great phone may not take nice pictures, but it seems some Realtors do not have a great filter on what is acceptable as MLS photos.

We are selling homes here, not a used bike on Craigslist.

And for those of you (I will give you the benefit of the doubt) who actually use a normal camera, heaven forbid a good one or a professional photographer, take some decent pictures!  For Pete’s sake, I want to see what the place looks like.  I do not need to see you in the reflection of a mirror, your side view mirror because you couldn’t bother to get out of your car, or as you will see below, someone who should have clearly closed the door.

Come on people, it’s really not that hard. Make believe you actually care about making your money. And if you can’t I am happy to take your clients and show them what some great photos can do for the sale of their home…

Just sayin’

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