Real Estate News, Tips & Market Trends

You’ll find our blog to be a wealth of information, covering everything from local market statistics and home values to community happenings. That’s because we care about the community and want to help you find your place in it. Please reach out if you have any questions at all. We’d love to talk with you!

May 20, 2019

Budgeting for Moving Day Expenses

On moving day, you'll have a big task. You’ll need to get your possessions from your old property to your new one — ideally without delays or damage! Surprisingly, many people underestimate the time and costs involved in doing that. Careful planning and budgeting are crucial to ensuring moving day goes smoothly.

You basically have three options:

  1. Hire a moving company to handle everything.
  2. Hire a truck and crew, while doing some of the work yourself. (For example, you can pack and help with loading.)
  3. Do it all yourself by renting a moving van and getting friends and family to help.

If you're going with option one, get quotations as early in the buying/selling process as possible. Services, costs and quality vary widely among full-service moving companies.

If you're going to do some or all of the move yourself, the best place to start is by making a list of what you'll need. In addition to renting a moving van, or hiring a truck and crew, there are many supplies you may require. For example, you’ll need boxes, protective fill and/or wrapping (i.e. bubble wrap), markers for labeling boxes, packing tape, and more.

You may decide to rely on friends to help load the truck on moving day. That's fine. Just be sure you have enough people to do the job within a reasonable timeframe, and confirm everyone's attendance at least a couple of days before.

Posted in Buyer Tips, Seller Tips
May 6, 2019

When you see a home you love

 

Imagine driving through a desirable neighborhood and, just as you turn a corner, you see the absolutely perfect home. Guess what? It's for sale! But, there’s a problem. Your current property isn't on the market. In fact, until this moment, you hadn’t seriously considered moving.

So what do you do?

Your first step is to find out more about the listing. Get a description of the property. Find out the listing price. Check out the size, layout, number of bedrooms and other features. If it all looks good, schedule a viewing.

Chances are, you can do all that in less than a day.

If you go to see the property and still love it, your next step is to determine if it fits within your budget. To do that, you'll need to quickly find out the Current Market Value of your home — what it will likely sell for — so you can determine how much money you'll have available after your outstanding mortgage and any other costs are deducted. It’s a smart idea to speak to your lender about getting a pre-approved mortgage at this point too.

Next, you'll need to make an offer on the new home. Depending on the competitiveness of the neighborhood, and the likelihood of multiple offers, you might need to list your home first. That, along with a pre-approved mortgage, will make your offer more credible.

You might end up buying the new home before your current property sells. Although that might cause some jitters, this scenario happens all the time in real estate. If you do the right things, and prepare your home properly, there's a good probability it will sell in time and that everything else regarding the two transactions will go smoothly.

But, you do need to move quickly and make some fast decisions if you want to get that perfect home.

I can help. Call me. 

Posted in Buyer Tips
April 22, 2019

Getting an Early Start on Selling your Home

You've probably heard the expression, "The early-bird gets the worm." It refers, of course, to those who get in early and reap the rewards. For example, if you arrive early to a retail store for a big blowout sale, you're likely to get the deals before the inventory runs out. The stragglers who come later miss out.

Well, this same wisdom can be applied to selling your home. Starting the process early — even if that means simply doing some initial planning — gives you the edge in several ways.

First of all, you get extra time for preparation. That means you can get your home cleaned, uncluttered and staged without feeling rushed. You also get more time to find out how much your property will likely sell for on today's market. That's important information, especially if you're also looking to finance a new home.

Secondly, there's less stress. You'll have more time to make the right decisions. The last thing you want is to be scrambling around, last minute, trying to get your home ready for sale.

Finally, with your initial preparations done, you'll be able to put your home on the market at a moment's notice. That's a huge advantage that's likely to lead to selling your property more quickly and for the best price. In fact, by getting an early start on the process, you might even find that right now is the best time to list -- and you'll be able to do so, with confidence.

Want help getting an early start on selling your home? Call me today at (909)610-5188 or Email me at Jack@JackMaRealtor.com

Posted in Seller Tips
April 11, 2019

Home For Sale: 1233 E. Maplegrove St. West Covina, CA 91792

Perched on an elevated site, higher than the surrounding properties, sits this three-bedroom, two-bath home. Set behind a gated entry offering privacy and peace of mind, it’s not hard to see why this light-filled residence is sure to be popular amongst savvy buyers.  Inside, a soaring raked ceiling combines with large windows and timber-look flooring to help create a bright and comfortable open-plan space. You will love the indoor-outdoor lifestyle this home offers while the avid cook will appreciate the spacious kitchen featuring sweeping countertops, stainless steel appliances and a gas cooktop.

You can sit back on the wrap-around outdoor space while overlooking the low-maintenance yard and gardens. The home has been freshly painted throughout and also has new copper plumbing installed meaning you can move in and relax without having to do a thing.  Nestled on a quiet street, you will live close to schools, restaurants and shopping outlets while quick access to the freeway will make commuting easy.

  • 3 Bedrooms 2 Bath
  • 1,358 Square Feet of Living Spaces
  • 7,438 Square Feet of Lot
  • Built in 1957
  • Offered at $558,000

Make this your dream home!  Call Jack Ma to schedule a private showing at (909)610-5188

Find more information here

Posted in Featured Property
April 8, 2019

Buying a Home in a Competitive Neighbourhood

Imagine you’ve dreamed of living in a particular neighborhood, perhaps for years, and then, when you're finally ready to make a move, finding out that the area is competitive and buying there is definitely a challenge.

A disappointment? Not necessarily.

There is a lot you can do to buy into a popular neighborhood, even in competitive offer situations.

Your first step is to start targeting that area now. Find out about property types, prices and trends. In particular, you’ll need to know what price range you should be thinking about, and making sure that it’s going to fit your budget. To do that, you might need to get a determination of the Fair Market Value of your current home.

Next, begin making preparations so you can get a jump on opportunities in that neighborhood quickly. You don't want to see a great property come on the market and not be ready to make a move. So, get your current home in order so it’s ready for a quick listing.

If possible, make arrangements to get alerted to new listings as soon as they come on the market. Keep in mind that a new listing may not appear online for several days. By getting advance notice, you can be among the first buyers to see the home and have an early advantage over other buyers.

If it's likely there's going to be competing offers for the home you want, there are many strategies that can increase your chances of winning. These involve going in at the right price, minimizing conditions to the offer, presenting the offer appropriately, and negotiating effectively.

Is there a neighborhood you want to get into? I can help make it happen. Call me today at (909)610-5188 or email me at Jack@JackMaRealtor.com.

Posted in Buyer Tips
April 1, 2019

Condo for Sale: 17006 Colima Rd. #9 Hacienda Heights

Great 1 bedroom ground floor unit in the gated community of Hacienda Pine. Conveniently located on Colima with lots of restaurants, shopping, market nearby. Community features tennis court and pool. Brand new laminated flooring and paint. Ideal for investors or first time home owners.

  • 1 Bedroom 1 Bath
  • 610 square feet of living space
  • Built in 1979
  • HOA $240
  • Offered at $278,000

Make this your dream home!  Call Jack Ma to schedule a private showing at (909)610-5188 or Jack@JackMaRealtor.com

Find more information here.  

 

Posted in Featured Property
March 27, 2019

Does the Area Have What You Want?

 

Imagine going to a restaurant with your family for dinner. You're planning on ordering a nice pasta and salad. Your heart is set on it. But, after you go to the trouble of driving there and getting a table, you discover that pasta is not on the menu.

 

That’s disappointing!

 

Of course, it’s only a meal. You can go somewhere else next time. But, what if the same scenario played out once you had moved into a new neighbourhood? Imagine you were counting on public transit being in easy walking distance, but discovered the nearest stop is four blocks away. Argh!

 

That's why it's important to ensure a neighbourhood has the characteristics you want — before you make an offer on a home you like.

 

Think about what you want most in a neighbourhood. Consider work, commuting, schools, playgrounds, noise level, walking and cycling, hobbies, shopping, entertainment, etc.

 

If there is a neighbourhood feature that is very important to you, check it out for yourself. For example, if easy access to a main highway is desirable for commuting, take the route for a test drive.

 

You can get a lot of information on a neighbourhood through the listed property's description and MLS listing.

 

Want more in-depth insights into an area you're considering? I have that information. Call today.

 

 

 

Posted in Buyer Tips
March 13, 2019

Staging your Home in a Hurry

Ideally you should have a week or two available before you list your property in order to stage your home and make it look its best for buyers. But, what if you listed quickly and within hours of the For Sale sign going up a buyer wants to view your property?

 

In that scenario, you need to do some quick "staging" to get your home ready. Let's assume your property is already clean and tidy. Here are some other things you can do.

 

·Open the curtains, even at night. This will make each room seem brighter, more appealing and more spacious.

·Pull out some boxes or storage bins. Put away personal knick-knacks (like that bowling trophy) and other personal items to reduce clutter on shelves and countertops.

·Clear countertops in the kitchen and bathrooms. Put the old toaster oven out-of-sight.

·Make sure lighting throughout the house is bright and comfortable. In darker areas, plug in a lamp.

·Clear away as much as you can in the foyer. Make that space look open, uncluttered and welcoming.

·Move cars out of the driveway. Give the buyer a convenient place to park!

·Make the beds. Fluff pillows on sofas.

·Clear away as many items as possible from the closet floors (such as shoes.)

·Open a window and air out the kitchen, especially if you just finished cooking.

·Make sure your pet is in a crate or, if possible, out for a walk. Not everyone loves pets.

 

These staging tips take only a few minutes each, but can make a big difference in the impression your home makes on a buyer.

 

Want more home selling advice? Call today at (909)610-5188.  

Posted in Seller Tips
Feb. 25, 2019

Market Update - February 2019 (Video)

Posted in Market Updates
Feb. 24, 2019

Relocate to a Different Town or City

 

Moving around the corner or even across town is relatively simple because you are likely familiar with the various neighbourhoods and you can access them anytime. If there's a listed home you want to view, you can simply go see it.

 

Relocating to a different town or city, however, is much more challenging. It may not be possible for you to make multiple visits to see homes for sale. You may also be unfamiliar with the various neighbourhoods.

 

So what do you do if you want to move out-of-town or need to relocate due to work?

 

Your first step is to get the information you need. You'll want up-to-date data on the neighbourhoods so you can pinpoint the ones that are the best fit for your needs and lifestyle. You'll also want to get a sense of the types of homes for sale in those neighbourhoods — style, size, features, listing price, etc.

 

Your next step is to schedule a day to view homes. This visit must be carefully planned so you only see those properties that are likely to be of interest. You don’t want to travel all that way only to end up seeing properties you wouldn't likely buy. What a waste of time!

 

So, if you’re relocating, you’ll need help. Give me a call. I can help make the relocation go smoothly for you.

 

 

Posted in Buyer Tips