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How can buyers write competitive offers without sacrificing their protections?If buyers remove all of their contingencies at the offer stage, what protections do they have throughout the rest of the process? This is an excellent question that is very relevant to the current market. Eliminating contingencies upfront can be risky, so today I’ll share…
 
Here are three tips to resolve your property dispute before selling.I’m not sure what it is, but recently, I’ve talked with a ton of clients that are having boundary disputes with their neighbors. These can be emotionally charged issues, and they’re essential to solve before you sell your home. That’s why today I want to share a few tips to help yo…
 
Four ways buyers can make their offers stand out to sellers.In a market where many homes receive 20 or 30 offers, how can you make sure you win? In March, I was selling a house every other day, and as a result, I reviewed countless offers. I’ve noticed a few things that winning offers have in common, so I want to share my advice about them:1. Follo…
 
What are 1031 exchanges, and how can they benefit you as a seller?Recently, a seller of ours received an offer that used 1031 exchange money. They didn’t know what that meant, so I wanted to explain the concept today.A 1031 exchange is a tax-deferred exchange. When someone sells an investment property, they usually have to pay a capital gains tax o…
 
Here’s what the data says about the future of our housing market.As an agent, one of the most common questions I receive is, “What’s happening in the real estate market?” Today I want to answer that question by taking a look at our current trends.If you check out the video at 0:23, you can see a chart from Keller Williams that shows average home pr…
 
How did we manage to get over 100 offers on a single property?On just one listing in Whittier, California, I helped a client generate 121 different offers. Even in our red-hot market, that’s a crazy amount of interest in just one home. So how did I manage it? Today I’ll share my tips for getting more offers for your listings, but we also need to di…
 
Here’s how we use emotion to make people act in today’s market.How can you get the most money for your home? Sellers ask me this quite a bit, but sometimes I’m even asked this by buyers who are looking to move into a new home. To illustrate a point, I want to tell you a story about a cup of mine.I walked into the kitchen last week and saw a crack d…
 
Here’s what’s most crucial to getting your offer accepted in this market.How do you get an offer accepted in this competitive real estate market? With low supply and very high demand, buyers are currently finding it more difficult to win the home they want. The simplest answer, and what often gets an offer accepted over others, is having the highes…
 
Here’s some advice about when to start packing when you sell your home.When a home seller accepts an offer on their home, they typically get excited and start packing their boxes in anticipation of their move. However, it’s very important to not pack them too early and refrain from destaging the home until all contingencies have been removed.If you…
 
Here’s when accepting a contingent offer might actually benefit you.Why on earth would a seller—especially in a low-inventory seller’s market like this —accept a contingent offer from a buyer?In most cases, it’s not a good idea to do so. There’s just too much risk involved, especially when there are so many other options. Most sellers just opt for …
 
Here are the details of negotiations when rent-back is a factor.Today’s question comes from the selling side: “Can we get a rent-back after the close of escrow?” The answer to that question is yes, you can always ask for a rent-back. First, let’s discuss what a rent-back is. Once the closing is completed, you can ask for the change of possession to…
 
Sellers: Here’s what to look for in an offer besides price.As a home seller, price is obviously a crucial factor in any offer you accept. However, there are three other things you should look for in an offer to truly know its strength:1. Time periods. How long does the buyer need to handle the physical inspection, appraisal, and loan contingencies?…
 
Here’s a quick tip to help sellers avoid a low appraisal.How can you avoid a low appraisal when selling your home? This is a common question in today’s market because home prices continue to rise, and we’ve seen properties selling for more than their appraised values. In fact, just this year, we had one property sell for $250,000 more than the appr…
 
Here’s why refinancing in today’s market is such a great idea.If you’re considering a refinance of your home, you’re not alone. I’ve already refinanced twice in the past year. Why? One reason is that the conforming limit has increased from $756,000 to $822,000. If your home is between that value, refinancing to a conforming rate may be in your best…
 
Make sure to file for your homeowners exemption if you haven’t yet.Today I have a quick tip for reducing your property taxes this year. A lot of new homeowners are unaware of the homeowners exemption, which will save you approximately $70 per year on your property taxes. If you have bought a home and it is your primary residence, you can apply. All…
 
You can brace and bolt your house almost for free—here’s how.Last year, a neighbor told us about the Earthquake Brace + Bolt program (EBB) that would allow us to brace and bolt our house for minimal cost.To take advantage, here’s what you need to do:1. Apply by the program’s deadline, March 19.2. If you’re accepted, you can have different contracto…
 
How do you hold title on your property? If you don’t know, you need to find out.Let me start my explanation with a story:I once had a dear client come to me; her husband had recently passed away, and she was ready to sell her house so she could move on and be with her children. We had gotten all the paperwork done and I had the title company review…
 
It’s a great time to refinance, and today we’ll explain why.Interest rates are still incredibly low, and this has led many people to refinance their homes. If you haven’t already thought about doing so, yourself, now may be the time to consider it. Refinancing could help you save a significant amount of money on your monthly payments over time. But…
 
The ability to get a spot approval for an FHA loan will help condo buyers and sellers alike.Few people know about FHA spot approvals, but it’s a resource that can open up many new options for potential condo buyers. If you own a condo or are looking to buy one, this type of approval likely affects you.The FHA loan was created for people who have ba…
 
Probate sales are often touted as a good deal, but is it risky to buy this kind of property? Before we get into this, let’s first define what probate is. In short, probate is the process by which the court determines how to appropriately distribute your assets after death. But, when buying this type of property, it’s important to understand the dif…
 
If you need to make a contingent offer to buy your next home, now’s the time to do so.Can you purchase a new home contingent on selling your current one? If you would’ve asked me a year and a half ago, the answer would’ve been “probably not”. Back then, we had very little inventory and high demand, which meant sellers were getting well-financed off…
 
Many buyers aren’t sure if getting a home warranty is worth it, so today we’ll get to the bottom of this question.Buyers often ask whether they should get a home warranty when purchasing a new property. Actually, yes—getting a home warranty is generally a good idea, especially given that sellers typically pay for a one-year policy at closing. And s…
 
We work with our fair share of elderly homeowners who are thinking about downsizing or moving closer to family, at which point we introduce them to Props 60 and 90. With this tax initiative, homeowners who are 55 years old or above are able to transfer their current property tax base over to a new home of equal or lesser value under the condition t…
 
If you’re thinking about refinancing your mortgage, you’re in luck. Today I’m answering some common questions about the topic.Today I’m back to answer a few common questions that homeowners have about refinancing. First, Dan recently asked me, “If I refinance my home, is it going to increase my property taxes?”The simple answer is no. When you refi…
 
About once a day, someone will reach out to me and ask for a referral. When people ask for a referral, there are three implied questions within that request: Can I trust this person? Does this person care? Can they help me?People want to know that the person they’re thinking of working with is trustworthy, compassionate, and competent.Many people w…
 
What exactly is included in the sale of a home?Oftentimes, whenever buyers see that a home’s MLS description says it comes with a washer, dryer, refrigerator, ect., they assume that those items are included with the home when they buy it. That’s not true—that just means the seller is offering them as part of the sale. If you want these items to be …
 
It’s hard to believe that 2018 is almost over. As the holidays are fast approaching, we want to take a moment to wish you and your family a warm and safe holiday season. It’s the season of giving, and we’d like to give you some insight into fun events going on in the area. Check out the list below to see our recommendations for ways to spend the se…
 
Here at the Dave Knight Real Estate Team, we love helping people buy and sell homes. I also love saving money, and today’s topic will be tips about how you can save money yourself if you’ve been thinking about retrofitting your home to prepare it for an earthquake.The credit for this tip goe to my neighbor Jim, who told me about the **EBB Program, …
 
Today I want to talk to you about a really powerful lesson that I learned from Matt Townsend. You may have heard of Matt Townsend, but in case you haven’t, he is the author of “Starved Stuff: Feeding the 7 Basic Needs of Healthy Relationships,” as well as the person who helps train Keller Williams agents. He has even worked with fellow author Steve…
 
Sellers often ask whether or not they have to do an inspection before they sell their home.This is a great question, to which the general answer is no. As a seller, you don’t have to discover future or current problems; it is the responsibility of the buyer to hire an inspector and discover existing problems. The seller is responsible for disclosin…
 
Today I want to pass on some information for those of you whose properties were damaged by the recent wildfires. If your property wasn’t damaged, you may have friends or family that could benefit from this information.The county assessor recently sent an email to most of us Realtors with information about what you can do if your property was damage…
 
Today I’m here to answer two questions that often come up when people are talking about condos and townhouses.The first question is, “What’s the difference between a condo and a townhouse?”This is the best way to look at it. A townhouse is just going to share walls with somebody else. It may be two stories or three stories, but there will be nobody…
 
I’m here today to answer the question, “Can I sell my home as-is?” Long answer short: You can. However, there is a common misunderstanding you should know about. Here’s a hypothetical situation you could run into:Let’s say there’s a Brian from Illinois who calls me and says, “Hey Dave, I’m the successor trustee of a property. My parents have passed…
 
If you’re a homebuyer in our area and you don’t want the general public to know where you live, there are ways you can buy a property anonymously.Most people who want to buy a home simply write an offer for it in their name. After that, the title company records that offer in their name. The problem with this, though, is that anyone who has access …
 
Today, we want to invite you to a fun event. Mark your calendars for Saturday, April 21 for our Paper-Shredding and E-Waste Event. If you have boxes of files to shred or old electronics to get rid of, bring them by. We will pay for the shredder and the E-waste company. All you have to do is stop by La Salle High School (3880 E Sierra Madre Blvd). W…
 
According to the latest reports, there are currently 400,000 homeowners in LA County who aren’t taking advantage of the savings on their annual property tax bills, leaving as much as $30 million unclaimed.If you own your primary place of residence as of January 1 of this year, the homeowners exemption will reduce the taxable assessed value of your …
 
Happy 2018! You’ve all asked me some great questions this last year, and today, I’m utilizing this time to pose a question that has had a huge impact on my life. I hope it has the same effect on yours.This is a very personal story. About three or four years ago, I was diagnosed with an autoimmune disease called ITP. I’ve been fine for the last thre…
 
What is a “reverse mortgage?” Today I have Don McCue, owner of Reverse Mortgages Plus, here with me to discuss what they are and how they can help you.So what exactly makes it “reverse?”A reverse mortgage in its simplest form is a mortgage. To qualify, we do the exact same process as a conventional mortgage. I collect documentation, submit it throu…
 
Should you sell your home during the holidays?I’ve been asked this question about four or five times in the last couple of weeks. This is a seller question but if you are serious about putting your home on the market, you need to consider things from the buyer’s perspective.Buyers who are looking for a home during the holidays tend to be more serio…
 
How do you deal with a 1031 exchange? Today I’ll be answering this question for you so that you won’t be confused when you hear this term in your real estate dealings.First, what even is a 1031 exchange? I’ll use an example to help me explain. My friend Brian purchased a small condo in Azusa (sp?) for a couple hundred thousand dollars. He sold it r…
 
What do our current market conditions mean for buyers and sellers in Los Angeles? Is now still a good time to buy?Here’s the biggest thing you need to remember—historically, we’ve seen seven-year cycles in the real estate market over the last 100 years from top to bottom. Right now, we’re in year 10 of our current cycle, so we’ve lasted three more …
 
We recently received a great question from Lynn that we wanted to answer today. She wanted to know, “Is there a good rule of thumb for how much to fix up a house before putting it on the market?** Also, what improvements give homeowners the best return on their investment?”**Every house is different, so there are a few different questions that we w…
 
We received a great question recently from one of our clients. The question is, “What is the Mills Act and what does it do?”The Mills Act is a government program that incentivizes those who own historic homes to keep up the preservation of those homes. They incentivize these homeowners through a discounted rate on their property taxes. For example,…
 
If you’re a homeowner, putting your property in a trust is a wise decision.Typically, there are two reasons people put their home in a trust. The first is for the tax benefits. To that end, it might be a good idea to talk to your accountant about how putting your property in a trust would specifically help you in this standpoint.The second reason i…
 
Today I’d like to share two questions that can help you determine whether now is the right time to sell your home.It might sound counterintuitive, but something I love about my job as a Realtor is helping people figure out when it’s best to not sell.The first question to ask relates to your closing costs and capital gains. Do you know what they wil…
 
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