As summer officially kicks off in Santa Cruz County, we say goodbye to the wild flowers and hello to warmer temperatures. But even though it might be heating up outside, there are still foggy days and plenty of cooling off opportunities...surfing, hanging out at the San Lorenzo River or enjoying a cold beer at one of our local breweries.
As we analyze the real estate statistics from May, it would seem that the market has found ways to keep cool too.
It is exciting to go to open houses and dream of the possibilities a new home brings. Going to open houses is crucial to finding the right home. The next time you take a tour of a home, keep these tips in mind to ensure it is a positive and useful experience.
From finding an inspector to dealing with surprises — this is your guide to getting a house checked out.
The first thing you need to know about home inspection: You’ll feel all the feels.
There’s the excitement — the inspection could be the longest time you’re in the house, after the showing or the open house.
Many homes and condominiums built before 1978 have lead-based paint. Paint that has chipped or is deteriorating, or on surfaces that rub together such as windows and doors, creates lead dust which can pose serious health hazards to occupants and visitors. Homebuyers and renters have important rights to know about whether lead is present -- before signing contracts or leases.
What is actually required of homeowners in these instances?
Its all about views in this round up of gorgeous homes that sold in Santa Cruz County in the first quarter of 2018. Ocean views certainly take the cake, even the majority of homes nestled in the Santa Cruz Mountains feature mesmerizing views of the Monterey Bay. But hey, we wouldn't complain about expansive vistas of the redwoods either.
This time of year typically brings a busy home-buying and -selling season but its not shaping up to be as robust as many initially thought. We're pointing our fingers at rising mortgage rates, a new tax law, growing affordability problems among first-time buyers and - you guessed it - inventory constraints.
When you own your home, things are going to break and, unless you want to spend your money on visits from a neighborhood handyman, you’re going to need to fix them yourself. Luckily, you don’t need an arsenal of tools to handle most home maintenance fixes. These five tools will cover most of your basic projects.
The following are easy ways and ideas to improve your home’s appearance and help you prepare to sell it faster.
Throughout the House
1. Open the draperies, pull up the shades or better yet, flatten them, and let the most sunlight in that you can.
This guide provided by the City of Santa Cruz is intended to assist landlords, tenants, property managers, Realtors, and potential rental property owners understand how the City Council’s recently adopted interim rent increase moratorium and just-cause eviction ordinances apply in the City of Santa Cruz. It explains the basic provisions of the Santa Cruz’s interim rent control law and certain state laws relating to rental housing.
Budgeting for buying a home can be difficult enough when you’re just weighing mortgage options and a purchase price. But there are many other factors that go into the cost of home ownership. Some of them are one-time expenses that you’ll pay during the home buying process, while others will be recurring costs for as long as you own the home.
More and more people are cutting the cord and going without television service, but for many—especially those who watch a lot of live programming— cable is still a necessity. Cable and satellite companies love to sign customers to a two-year contract, but will dramatically raise your bill when a promotional period ends after one year. Suddenly, you’re paying $50 or more per month for the same services.
Adding plants to your home will give it a fresher and brighter feel and will also improve your home’s air quality. Although it does take a little bit of work and consistency to maintain your plants, but it’s well worth the effort. Here are a few tips for keeping your plants looking great.
We've always told our clients that the closing date is a “target date” because things can sometimes come up at the last minute that can delay the closing a day, or a week, or sometimes even longer. It seems like it’s RARE to close on time nowadays.
Bluetooth offers great wireless convenience for your smartphone, allowing you to connect to your headphones, car stereo, wireless speaker, and other devices without dealing with a tangle of cords and wires. However, most of us aren’t careful enough when it comes to Bluetooth security.
Homeownership has always been a pillar of the American Dream, but the last recession and the slow economic recovery has many people reexamining the possibility of achieving this traditional American ideal. Is homeownership even still a part of our national ethos? Most would agree it still is, and we want to assure everyone that they can still achieve homeownership with a little planning and diligence.
“Refinancing” is a scary word for many people, but that shouldn’t be the case for you. For many homeowners, refinancing can not only lower your monthly payments and help with your monthly budget, but it can save you thousands of dollars in the long run.
You’ve most likely heard the rule: Save for a 20-percent down payment before you buy a home. The logic behind saving 20 percent is solid, as it shows that you have the financial discipline and stability to save for a long-term goal. It also helps you get favorable rates from lenders.
But there can actually be financial benefits to putting down a small down payment—as low as three percent—rather than parting with so much cash up front, even if you have the money available.
Tucked in the redwoods of the Santa Cruz Mountains, the San Lorenzo Valley community is a hidden treasure. The area is named for the San Lorenzo River whose headwaters begin above Boulder Creek and which runs through the valley on its way to the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk and into the Monterey Bay.
Much of the river valley is rural and wooded, but there are also beautiful neighborhoods, excellent schools and charming local shopping areas.
Organic food usually tastes better, and is better for you, but it can also be very expensive compared to non-organic products. Organic food can cost nearly 50 percent more, thanks to the extra labor required to produce it and consumers’ demand exceeding supply.
So how do you get tasty organic food without spending a ton of extra money? Follow these tips to get more bang for your buck.
Congress has introduced a new tax reform bill in the House of Representatives that will disproportionately harm Californians. Among the many provisions in this tax reform bill is the elimination of state and local income tax deductions. That means, tax payers will no longer be able to deduct the state and local taxes they pay on their income. Take a look at how that could impact you.
As a parent of children in the local schools in the San Lorenzo Valley (Felton, Ben Lomond, Brookdale and Boulder Creek) I was nervous when I first saw the school rankings of the local schools. We had decided to move back here in 2011. At the time SLV Elementary was struggling with a 6 on the ranking system. Middle of the road at best. What I quickly found out was that the score really didn't reflect that attitude of the school, the teacher's passion for their work and the level of parent involvement in the classrooms.
Autumn was in full swing in October, but activity in the Santa Cruz County housing market stayed at summer-like levels.
The median price of $867,000 for existing single family homes in October was two percent higher than in September and a staggering nine percent higher than October last year when the median was $794,950.