Saturday, December 25, 2010

Not much to blog about on this holiday--just to wish all of our friends and clients: A VERY HAPPY HOLIDAY! You are the ones who make it special!
Peter & Jane

Friday, December 17, 2010

What's Happening--Or Likely to:
Well, as we finish out the third to last week of 2010, a few things are worth noting on the interest rate front. First, last week, rates again rose, making this the fifth week in a row they've risen. Now 30 year fixed rate money is slightly above 4.8% p.a.--quite a bit above where it was in late October/early November. However, even at 4.8% and change, these rates are still way under what we're used to seeing for mortgage financing of this term. Does it cost you more a month than a month ago? Definitely, yes! Is it still better than anyone could predict a year ago, and thus, still a bargain? Also, a definite 'Yes'! So what does one do? If you're a buyer, keep seriously looking for a new home, especially when you again consider the relatively low prices many homes still have and add that to these low rates. You still have an outstanding opportunity for a home that meets many, if not all, of your dreams.

Sellers: what about you? Well, if you want prices of a few years ago, I haven't anything in my bag of tricks for you. But, again, the continued low rates do add up to a number of active buyers who could make offers on your home. Also, as we near the year's end, many of homes come off the market for the duration of the holidays. Most sellers are thinking they'll come back on in the spring when gardens are in bloom and everything's 'gorgeous'. Well, for experienced sellers and their agents, 'Spring' means mid-January/early February. Why? Simple! All buyers are back on the market with a vengeance that soon after the New Year. They want to beat out the competition for the homes that will be available. Equally important, many of these buyers are 'RELO' buyers--people who have been moved or newly hired and moved by their firms; people, in other words, who MUST buy a home and NOW! Grab 'em--they're really hot to trot!

We can help you analyze the market and your home's value and also prep your home to be ready for this hot new year start, thus enabling you to get the best price for your home in the shortest reasonable amount of time. Give us a call! You'll be glad you did!

Friday, December 10, 2010

Not too much to tell this week--the biggest potential news is the tax cut negotiations the Congress and the President are trying to conclude. Nothing as of this moment has been passed, but talks continue. Meanwhile, interest rates, though still at low levels, again rose this week, with the 30 year rates at 4.46. Many experts feel that the near term trend on rates will be determined at least in large part on the outcome of the tax negotiations. So, stay tuned. We'll get the news to you as soon as we have it.
Meanwhile, if you have a question or need any advice about the real estate market: GIVE US A CALL! We'd be pleased to help. Tel: (415) 380-2133 (Peter) or 531-4091 (Jane) or email us: Also, check out our web site: .

Friday, December 03, 2010

Are Things Getting Better?:

There seems to be a number of signals going off in different directions about the state of the economy in general, and the state of the housing market in particular. Bottom line: no-one seems to be certain which is the actual direction that the markets are actually pointed to.
Employment figures this week got a couple of good reports in terms of numbers of new jobs created and continuing jobs figures. But just today, at the start of the business day, new unemployment applications increased unexpectedly to put the national jobless rate at 9.8%. (Marin's is substantially lower, and that is usually the case.)

Interest rates have continuously rambled along at or near all time low levels. This week, however, rates jumped to over 4.4% for 30 year fixed rate loans. Is this the start of increases or just a week's aberration? Either way, current rates are still incredibly low and a very good reason to get into the market for a home.

On another front, is the housing market picking up or remaining in the doldrums? You can find a number of analysts saying that it's still got a long way to go to recover. Case Shiller, in fact, just released its latest monthly report showing a drop in sales nationally, with the area having the latest reduction being the SF Bay area with over a 10% reduction. Trend or seasonal adjustment? We'll have to wait and see. Yet, figures just released yesterday showed the highest number of homes for sale under contract in over two years--definitely a good sign. One thing for sure--it is very much a case of house by house and area by area.
In my humble opinion, the market is definitely improving, slowly, but it will take at least until the 3d or 4th quarter of 2011 to show a marked increase.

Meanwhile, if you have questions about the local market or your home in particular, please give us a call: (415/ 380-2133 for Peter and (415) 531-4091 for Jane. We'd be happy to help.