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Lodi Realtors offer interpretations of state's rise in home sales, prices

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Posted: Friday, January 22, 2010 12:00 am

The California housing market is showing signs of life, with sales rising 10.6 percent last month from December 2008 and an uptick in prices as well, a real estate tracking firm reported Thursday.

San Diego-based MDA DataQuick said the median price paid for a home in California last month was $264,000, up 6 percent from $249,000 a year earlier but down 1.1 percent from $261,000 in November.

Here's some reaction from local Realtors:

Melanie Pennino, president, Lodi Association of Realtors

"Overall our market has not seen much of an uptick in prices, but we have seen an uptick in sales. Generally, the increase in prices comes after an increase in sales. However, we are seeing a lot of competition locally in the lower price ranges.

"There has been some small uptick in prices due to competition over homes. We in the Valley could follow along that trend. However, we got hit worse with the foreclosure crisis than the Bay Area. Our recovery will take longer.

"The numbers are encouraging, both nationally and in California. We are looking for increases in the sale prices in the area. I wish I had a crystal ball to tell when exactly it will happen.

"I've read that median price increases are up 24 percent since the market hit rock-bottom. Of course, the median doesn't show the true price, but it's an indication that things are looking up."

Larry Underhill, Statesman Realty

"There is an old saying in real estate that all real estate is local. When the market slid in early 1990s, Lodi was the caboose of the train into the tunnel of downturn and the last one out. People here were opening the paper and seeing headlines saying home prices are up. Then they would get confused when I told them to lower the prices of the homes they were selling.

"Personally, I'm seeing a strong uptick in activity and upward pressure in prices. It may be short-lived; I don't know. There is a lot of shadow inventory the banks are controlling that is not yet on the market.

"Sixty percent of successful closings right now are bank-owned homes. The banks are slowly trickling out inventory; in that sense it is a good thing, because we are seeing multiple offers on well-priced homes. It's the same old struggle every time there is an upward push on prices.

"I'm also seeing a shift in mood and greater sense of optimism. I'm seeing more property owners instead of short sales and bank-owned homes.

"John and Mary Q. Public are putting their house on the market because they see it's a strategic time to move up. They can move up to nice house at a killer interest rate.

"Right now is a once-in-a-generation opportunity. Prices and interest rates are coming together, and it is a wonderful thing that will not last. People who missed out will discover what they should have known when the time has passed."

Paul Mertz, Mertz Company

"I would like to see more foreclosure homes on the market, and we aren't seeing as many bank-owned properties available as the previous year. They are coming out slower. I'd like to know why that is.

"Statistically, there were fewer home sales that closed in December 2009 than in December 2008 in Lodi, because of the lack of available inventory.

"There were 85 sales that closed in December 2008, and 57 in December 2009. However, pending sales were up in December 2009 over the previous year. There were 44 pending sales in December 2008 and 49 last month.

"Average prices are a tougher figure to figure out. I (add up) the averages for each month and divide it by 12. In 2009, the average price for a home in Lodi was $250,000. That price is higher than our neighbor Stockton's. Their average price was $177,000. Stockton's number of sales that closed also dipped. In December 2008, 644 closed. In December 2009, 421 closed.

"Real estate is local, and different things affect the market differently. It's pretty much true everywhere."

Contact reporter Jordan Guinn at jordang@lodinews.com.

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66 comments:

  • posted at 5:20 pm on Thu, Jan 28, 2010.

    Posts:

    Attention prospective buyers- Do you want the FACTS--the TRUTH about any property for sale in Lodi? Check this out FOR FREE! KNOWLEDGE IS POWER.Redfin is now in town!Look at the REDFIN map, address and listings here. Place into the URL address space on the top of the browser, and have fun! http://tinyurl.com/yjzx9e4

     
  • posted at 1:32 pm on Wed, Jan 27, 2010.

    Posts:

    Home sales fell 19% for the month of December, the worst drop in forty years.. Don’t look like the Fat Lady is going to sing anytime soon…

     
  • posted at 6:19 am on Wed, Jan 27, 2010.

    Posts:

    Geez... take a breath.

     
  • posted at 6:08 am on Wed, Jan 27, 2010.

    Posts:

    edumacation- BOTTOM LINEIf for ONLY 5 years, a renter is frugal, cancels frivolous expenses, cell phones, cable TV, Credit card use. They can easily save $200/week= 10,400/year = $52,000. A 25 year old with a lousy job can net enough for a REAL Down Payment.In only 15 years after starting, they would NOW OWN THEIR OWN HOUSE, have minimal debt--NO MORTGAGE, and enough that they saved by NOT paying for PMI and twenty years of interest, to OWN at least one additional identical house.Which is MORE affordable? Five years of frugality + large down payment? OR debt piled on debt with a NO down payment government backed mortgage?Don't forget, WHEN the residential market turns AND IT ALWAYS HAS, who is paying more money per month on a mortage thsat is GREATER than the house can sell for?Millions have recently lost "their homes" (actually mortgage debt) and millions more will lose this year as 5 Year OPTION ARMS come due and house prices drop like rocks.The cost to build is less than the cost to buy an old house. Add that to the calculations.

     
  • posted at 5:58 am on Wed, Jan 27, 2010.

    Posts:

    Lodian--Look at the numbers.At the end of 10 years, my total of payments ARE MUCH less than yours.You are still paying small principal payments + big interest payments every month.I OWN MY HOUSE---FREE AND CLEAR.YOU HAVE 20 more YEARS to pay!Now if you ever have a problem making a payment-- Who loves you? Banks? NO!, Bail Out Bobby loan broker ? NO! Uncle Sam? NO! Your friendly Realtor? What do you think? They got their money>? Wannna sell sell sell? and buy buy buy?It always your choice.Lets add the rental aspect. Lets say you rent the mnimum that you need to be comfortable. You owe a rent fee every month. A wise renter will ask for a fixed price/term lease. A wise landlord will agree to a fixed price/term. This adds predictability to your monthly debt.

     
  • posted at 5:47 am on Wed, Jan 27, 2010.

    Posts:

    Lodian- Lets compare: Lodian at less than 20% down to buy a mortgage (NOT a house) at a fixed rate at 5% for 30 years. First determine your downpayment using any amortization calculator. Once you know the price and amount of downpayment+ sales commission expense, closing expenses+ house/termite inspection+ doc fees+ property taxes+ HOA + insurance premiums---do your calculations. Pencil in the total PITI/monthly and bracket the total fees + closing for later calcs.Now my offer. Lets say I ONLY put down 30%. I usually put down > 50% DP and finance with the mortgage debt amortized at a fixed rate for NMT 10 years.Add up the same additional costs---to be fair lets add in the 6% commish! Add up the totals. As a buyer with a large DP, I am using my OWN POST TAXED MONEY. I am VERY careful with offers, since it IS MY cash--NOT OPM.

     
  • posted at 5:32 am on Wed, Jan 27, 2010.

    Posts:

    Lodian- What does the word affordable mean to you? This is a good place to start. Does it mean the amount that what you CAN pay each month through good times and bad? Many people fall into this trap, that why we have credit cards at 40% interest per year. Do you know the rule of 72? At 7% PA interest, the debt doubles every ten years. For savings accounts at 7%/year (normal situation), you will double your savinbgs every ten years. Think about it.Affordable to me, means the bottom line total cost of the expense. By performing an Economic Analysis comparing RENT vs BUY, the ONLY way that can make sense is for less than 20% down house buyers are ONLY two options:A) speculative equity growth is large compared to original price, and the house is SOLD (CASH OUT) for a net profit above accrued interest and principal and property TAXES+insurance. You can not predict this!B) YOU PAY LOW and let any inflation take care of the amount of interest, taxes and insurance. Again. Only a sold CASH is calculated.

     
  • posted at 5:20 am on Wed, Jan 27, 2010.

    Posts:

    Lodian-- Now to the defect in the question. What does the word affordable really mean?Here is an example. I think you will agree that once you sign that contract and everything is approved, YOU NOW OWN THE DEBT, not the house. You have right to live in the house as though you own it, but it is owned by the owners of the debt.Look at any mortgage amortization calculator. For lets say a 5% annual interest at a 30 year fixed rate. That is a very typical loan. For every addtional DOLLAR in down payment at the start of the loan, you will save TWO dollars in interest. For every thousand dollar increase on down payment, you will save two thousand dollars. This starts adding up very quickly. Now over 80% of new mortgages are guaranteed to by FHA. The FHA requires an additional insurance premium called PMI for the first five years of the loan. The PMI is "bad money". It does not add to the principal debt.

     
  • posted at 5:10 am on Wed, Jan 27, 2010.

    Posts:

    Lodian- This is an excellent question, and is used by many estate agents to encourage first time house buyers to BUY NOW.I will start with the inherent defect in the question.Your question is based on the very short term--ONLY, and is based on the impied definition of the word affordable.It is true, that over a FEW months, from the perspective of a first buyer, all you need to do is compare the MONTHLY dollar amount of rent and PITI to arrive at a simple answer. But its NOT that simple.Along with this "purchase" (it is only a contract) is your "purchase money" mortgage (CAL) that REQUIRES YOU to be FINANCIALLY OBLIGATED to the terms of the contract for a specific time with, usually, specific sized payments UNTIL THE COMPLETE DEBT has been satisfied. Only when this debt is satisfied will the mortgage company (or assignee) release the legal title of the property to you, so you can claim it has YOUR HOUSE. You are really renting money to pay the FIXED debt.

     
  • posted at 4:05 am on Wed, Jan 27, 2010.

    Posts:

    Most people can get a mortgage for the same (or less!) payment they would pay in rent, so why would they want to rent when they could own and make that money actually go towards their own home?

     
  • posted at 9:35 am on Tue, Jan 26, 2010.

    Posts:

    Lodian- All we need to do is follow the advice of Ben Franklin. Don't buy anything that you can not afford. Don't borrow money unless its an emergency. Don't pay frivolous junk fees or for frivolous pretend services. To borrow money for these services add interest and more unproductive wasted expense. If someone REALLY adds value that you can see, consider paying for their work. Takers and talkers and other con-artists can always find something else to occupt their time. Maybe they can start up another pyramid scheme? Or sell Sham-Wow paper towels on TV?

     
  • posted at 9:09 am on Tue, Jan 26, 2010.

    Posts:

    Lodian- what you say makes no sense.

     
  • posted at 8:21 am on Tue, Jan 26, 2010.

    Posts:

    edumacation: Blah blah blah... maybe you could get everyone in the US together (so they don't buy/mortgage) and "sell" them your "free" seminar. Maybe you could sell tents too so they can camp and save for a down payment.

     
  • posted at 1:38 pm on Mon, Jan 25, 2010.

    Posts:

    Just an FYI. I would NEVER use Renee Whiteside EVER............ AWFUL SERVICE!

     
  • posted at 4:46 am on Mon, Jan 25, 2010.

    Posts:

    Lodian- If you use a GSE or FHA backed mortgage, you NEVER KNOW how much REAL equity (cash in hand) you have in the house! Your betting on an optimistic appraisal/closed sale. Don't forget the PMI! YOU CAN NEVER KNOW until the house is SOLD.If you have a large downpayment (the larger, the better), you rarely have to worry about the speculative equity in the house. It can increase or decrease without affecting your PAID equity. There are a few exceptions! These include natural disasters, and if you are buying high INTO a bubble---like today, you could lose equity with 20% downpayments---some already have.Look what Larry Underhill said about house prices..." Personally, I'm seeing a strong uptick in activity and upward pressure in prices. It may be short-lived; I DON'T KNOW. There is a lot of shadow inventory the banks are controlling that is NOT YET ON THE MARKET..."What about a family emergency, where you MUST extract equity? Which house has the least risk? The house bloated with debt and loans?Or The house with PAID EQUITY (large downpayment+ principal?

     
  • posted at 4:21 am on Mon, Jan 25, 2010.

    Posts:

    Lodian- The more downpayment, the less you will pay through interest.It is non-conventional mortgages that have caused this bubble. 30% down is better.It was in the early 1930's that the first ten year mortgages started.Previously, it was either cash, build it yourself or three year loans.It is the the lowest financially able buyers that are keeping ALL house prices high.Today, it is still cheaper to build a new house than to buy an existing house. There are mid-sized NEW CONSTRUCTION communities that are selling less per square ft than OLD 1928 termite boxes in Stockton.Check out NEW Central valley communities by Hovnanian....and THEY ARE BUILDING TODAY AND MAKING A PROFIT!Your problem with rentals was probably because you had a mortgage or paid too much for the area? Having rental houses is enjoyable. Apartments are terrible. Few people, but the very old or very young can tolerate them. It is very difficult to prevent sublets which can turn apartments into slums overnight.If buyers wise up and save for a downpayment, houses will reprice lower, making them even MORE affordable!

     
  • posted at 3:07 am on Mon, Jan 25, 2010.

    Posts:

    Owning rentals has been one of my least favorite ventures. And paying someone else (renting a home) is not a wise idea if your goal is to own a home of your own. This is not the best path to home ownership.

     
  • posted at 4:01 pm on Sun, Jan 24, 2010.

    Posts:

    Observer- It can be an enjoyable learning and financial experience. But ONLY if you 1) Only pay cash, 2) pay the lowest you can to minimize property taxes. 3) Don't be greedy with your rent charges. The first 3-5 years are a wash, but after that as long as you have a zero vacancy rate, there is a LOT of money to be made. Keep rents in the bottom 30% of the market and keep the properties in excellent shape, and you will have renters who will not want to leave. I can easily double the rents with some properties, but why disrupt a good income stream? and risk having vacancies? A vacant house brings in NO MONEY. My renters are selected just like they are applying for a job. If I trust them, they get a contract. If not, they can go somewhere else. Plus they all apreciate the fact that they have enough left over to save money to buy a house if they want. It takes a few years to save 25% (20 down+ 5 close), assuring long term rents.

     
  • posted at 11:32 am on Sun, Jan 24, 2010.

    Posts:

    Edu, I'm not sure what you want me to go out and look for but when I have purchased commercial property in the past I know how much I am willing to pay. Sometimes the buyer accepts the offer and sometimes does not. The only residential property I've ever purchased was my own home. I wouldn't purchase residential rental property if my life depended upon it.

     
  • posted at 9:02 am on Sun, Jan 24, 2010.

    Posts:

    Observer- Go out and start looking. When it happens to you...you will learn ALL about it. You can fool some of the buyers all of the time but not all of the buyers all of the time.

     
  • posted at 9:00 am on Sun, Jan 24, 2010.

    Posts:

    1) You did not answer the question.Which is more important? keeping prices high by not accepting reasonable offers, or closing at low prices which lowers comps and more house prices which adds to the decrease in commission payouts? The former strategy may be accompanied with the "multiple offer" gambit.2) Arbitrators are not trained to rule on elements of alleged fraud. That's another reason to support the fact that real estate attorneys are the better alternative.

     
  • posted at 8:43 am on Sun, Jan 24, 2010.

    Posts:

    Ed:I don't have time to answer all of your silly questions, however, here is some food for thought. 1. Did it ever occur to you that some homeowners list their homes then refuse to cooperate with showings? (husbands and wives not on the same page, someone is sick in the house,etc.) So, their house may sit for a long time on the market. Duh! If any number of offers come in, the Listing Agent has an obligation to the Seller to "Present All Offers" until the Seller decides that they don't want to see any more. The Seller has no duty to accept any of the offers presented. So, the house may sit for a long time. Remember, the listing agent will not see a payday until the house SELLS> 2. You say..Dual agency in property transactions would be illegal" So, I guess that creates the NEED for more Realtors! I guess Arbitration is a bad thing in your book since the Arbitrator is working for both sides to get an agreement.

     
  • posted at 8:12 am on Sun, Jan 24, 2010.

    Posts:

    I have no experience to answer that question.

     
  • posted at 7:41 am on Sun, Jan 24, 2010.

    Posts:

    pre$$ure$on or Observer - Please tell me your experience with this same question that I asked stuckinlodi?

     
  • posted at 7:38 am on Sun, Jan 24, 2010.

    Posts:

    Stuckinlodi - In the "multiple offer" scenario---How does an interested, qualified and motivated buyer REALLY know that they are not bidding against themselves or faux bidders (dozens of "weasel-out" contingencies)??NO broker will answer this question! Explain how a house with 200 DOM gets relisted and sits another 90 days with NO activity (walk throughs showings etc), the price has not changed and there have NEVER been "pending offers" on it. But, the very first time that "YOU" as a QUALIFIED and pre-approved buyer shows any interest, that same house allegedly has NEW "multiple offers"? So, YOU back off, wait, and 6 months later the same house is still sitting there at a lower asking price. Explain how this happens--Especially, if you contact the frustrated owner who tells you that they have NEVER had an offer?Why do I see this all the time? Is this what some salesmen call the "multiple offer" gambit?What is being done to stop this practice? Does this practice really exist? Why so many "multiple offers" on 250 DOM listings and they are still for sale but at LOWER prices??

     
  • posted at 1:21 am on Sun, Jan 24, 2010.

    Posts:

    Ok, now I'm starting to get it. pre$$ure$on is starting to sound very familiar. I think it's a safe assumption that our friend is back and blogging. Happy blogging!

     
  • posted at 4:25 pm on Sat, Jan 23, 2010.

    Posts:

    Lodian- Close! They would still have the option of putting 20-30% down on a fully amortized 15 years mortgage. They would save a huge amount of money and would not buy a house unless they were really serious. They would accumulate equity from each monthly PITI payment, and the probability of foreclosures, upside down mortgages and walk aways would almost vanish. A side effect is that people would be forced to live within their means.No more NINJA loans to the homeless/destitute with cash back at closing and re-fi's or HELOCS every few years. Price stability would ensue and it would turn homebuying into a REAL INVESTMENT in the future instead of a sideshow at a circus like today. Affordability would regain its old meaning. 30 year mortgages are a recent development, that only stimulates churn, price inflation and userious mortgage contracts. The average homeowner would for the first time in many years always know how much accumulated equity they really had. No more late night real estate informercials!

     
  • posted at 4:05 pm on Sat, Jan 23, 2010.

    Posts:

    So, edumacation, are you suggesting that the people that cannot afford to (or choose not to) pay CASH for a home just RENT a home?

     
  • posted at 12:39 pm on Sat, Jan 23, 2010.

    Posts:

    stuckinlodi-- Bozo? I must have hit a sensitive nerve? Whats wrong with earning an honest living? If you read Cleckley, you will remember that there is a close association with "salesmanship" as practiced and psychopathic personality disorders. Con-artist friendly occupations should be criminalized. You know the kind that have DISCLAIMERS on every page?

     
  • posted at 12:32 pm on Sat, Jan 23, 2010.

    Posts:

    stuckinlodi- if you follow these simple principles there would be no more "block busting", red-lining, equity bubbles, and RE/mortgage fraud would be seriously curtailed. Yup---All my broker friends agree. The bad actors would have to leave the profession. Three of the points are being studied by Congress.Look at this for the latest on the Congressional Bi-partisan FINANCIAL CRISIS Inquiry.http://www.fcic.gov/ Watch and cry or hope and change.

     
  • posted at 12:26 pm on Sat, Jan 23, 2010.

    Posts:

    stuckinlodi-- Many Realtors on ActiveRain agree with the following:If you don't have the cash, don't buy.Search for value and pay the lowest price.If you want to sell a house--FSBO. All residential property transactions would require a real estate attorney on a fixed fee.The Federal government should restrict all new mortgages to a MINIMUM of 20-30 % down and no more than 15 years on fully amortized mortgages with no balloon payments. Refis- You must have a minimum 20% equity calculated with an appraisal of recently sold comps in the past 30 days.Dual agency in property transactions would be illegal.Property listings would be provided by each state as a free service. Each property profile listing must be computer checked to assure that all required local building permits are in effect. Any lying or fraud would be a crime. All GSE's as well as the FHA would be eliminated. They are anti-free market and produce price bubbles and fraud.Down Payment Assistance would be a serious crime.Private property sales transactions would be encouraged.

     
  • posted at 9:10 am on Sat, Jan 23, 2010.

    Posts:

    Ed: I think your "best friends are Real Estate Agents" need to drop you as a friend. You are the most one-sided, my way or the freeway, person on earth. You know it all Ed. You don't have any respect for how your "friends" make their living. Yeah, they have to make a living just like your Attorney/financial advisor/Realtor/wipe Ed's behind, guy. If you think that "Attorneys are not salesmen", think again bozo.

     
  • posted at 7:50 am on Sat, Jan 23, 2010.

    Posts:

    1) If you mean estate agents, you should also be concerned? Some of my best friends are estate agents. BTW - they all agree with me.2) Don't get confused with membership in an organization. He has rights as a member to join the Multiple and get other information He is also a licensed financial planner. I pay one fee for attorney and accounting services. I posit that commissions keep prices high.3) I am NOT "paying double" . I am etting PROFESSIONAL financial AND legal advice. For about ~1% depending on complexity and time. He negotiates on my behalf with sellers. He writes his own BULLET PROOF contracts and appears in court as required. He is not just an "order taker" and DOES NOT SELL!Estate agents are not allowed to provide legal or accounting advice. Read the contracts. They are SALESMEN! Sell sell sell---buy buy buy.Attorneys are not salesmen, BUT LEGAL ADVOCATES.What is so difficult? If you want professional legal, hire one. It is generally illegal for attorneys to represent both sides.

     
  • posted at 5:53 am on Sat, Jan 23, 2010.

    Posts:

    Let's see "ed", you "use an Attorney who is also a Realtor", so why are you so worked up about what everyone else does? I'm sure your Attorney/Realtor charges you for their services. Would you even know if your Attorney/Realtor is receiving a commission when he/she closes a deal for you? Do they walk you through the "paperwork"? Do you expect them to tell you what to buy and what not to buy? My guess is that would be violating your sense that you know it all already. So, why again are you paying double for the Legal and Realtor services? Ever bought a car or a RV on your own? Or did you take your Attorney/Realtor/Car Dealer with you? Who goes with you to buy groceries?

     
  • posted at 5:01 am on Sat, Jan 23, 2010.

    Posts:

    Observer- I never said that. This is only a record of a few of the public records that are available. I prefer to use online databases that have most every document you need.In the case of the county Grantor-Grantee index. It is ONLY an index of some filings. If the entity is using another name, you won't find it by surname. You still must check out Map Book and Page for each document number.Once you start learning about local government records, you will quickly understand that in the USA there are many more legal rights for Credit grantors. Many people don't understand this basic principle. ie The Golden rule. She who has the "Gold" makes the rules. Whats ironic is that many people with lots of net worth, use OPM --Other Peoples Money-- to leverage their assets. The results in a market collapse like the one THAT IS JUST STARTING, is that many formerly wealthy people or entities are now BK or swimming in debt.Lots of "wannabe's who were recently bragging are now choking on debt.

     
  • posted at 1:50 am on Sat, Jan 23, 2010.

    Posts:

    Edu, I think that website is somewhat misleading. I looked myself up and was shocked at the number of times my wife and my name appeared. I finally realized that every time you renew a loan, refinance, move property into your trust, change your trust, etc. there is a new recordation. I didn't go all the way back but I'll bet our name appeared at least five times and it was the same property. I don't think you can assume that every time your name pops up at the Recorder's office that you've sold or purchase a new piece of property.

     
  • posted at 5:47 pm on Fri, Jan 22, 2010.

    Posts:

    Lodian- Its called write them a check and you won't have to worry about a mortgage. I promise you if everyone did this, prices would drop like a rock. Its buyers with no money and no income who want today what they want to pay for tomorrow who are a big part of the problems. Scrap HUD, FHA, and the GSE's, and let interest rates correct without interference by the Fed and everything will be okay, but a very few billionare bubble blowers. Tweet tweet

     
  • posted at 5:38 pm on Fri, Jan 22, 2010.

    Posts:

    edumacation: Wow! You've literally been here all day!

     
  • posted at 5:36 pm on Fri, Jan 22, 2010.

    Posts:

    dogs4you: Good idea paying extra to get that mortgage balance down. I sure don't want to be paying a mortgage payment when I'm in my 70's!

     
  • posted at 3:41 pm on Fri, Jan 22, 2010.

    Posts:

    Edu, great link to the recorder/county clerk's office. Didn't take long to find the big players and complete families involved in the realty business, one of the larger being one of the referenced interviewees. And even council members and their spouses. What is meant by substitution of trustee? Are these some of the same parties that claim some of those rentals as their personal residences that you mentioned a while back?

     
  • posted at 2:56 pm on Fri, Jan 22, 2010.

    Posts:

    Gator- I don't know about the cold day in hell, but watching the DOW the last few days, should make any prudent person be very careful about going into debt FOR ANY REASON. If you are cash buyer, you have learned enough to watch out for the sharks---the BIG smiling one with lots of sharp teeth. There are plenty out there who will endeavor to separate you from your hard earned cash. Caveat Emptor! And "I" am not selling anything but caution.

     
  • posted at 2:50 pm on Fri, Jan 22, 2010.

    Posts:

    pre$$ure$on 8:14- I can recommend a potentially amusing activity for you! One could conduct an online San Joaquin (or any county) Grantor-Grantee index search on anyone by last name. You can do it online or go to Stockton and run it in person. You might be surprised how many public employees try to be "flippers" or real estate "overnight get rich quick millionaires"?It's all in the public record by County and it is public information. Take a peek at the Deeds of trust, tax liens, and judgments. It gives you a much clearer picture about what is REALLY going on in their minds.You will see many interesting correlations!Its not always what you see on the surface, that determines motivation. It can be greed, fear of the tax collector, legal problems, debts, collections, or problems collecting rent from the "flipper" houses.And the best part, ITS ALL FREE, for the asking. There is MUCH MORE PUBLIC information available.When you have debt, you lose privacy.Try this link- www.co.san-joaquin.ca.us/Recorder/grantorgrantee/searchindex.asp

     
  • posted at 2:14 pm on Fri, Jan 22, 2010.

    Posts:

    dogs4you wrote on Jan 22, 2010 3:45 PM:" edumacation, have you given any thought of going into the business, or maybe you are. The old saying goes, if you can`t impress someone with your knowledge, dazzle them with your BS. With all your posts, I`ll take knowledge.I agree. Edu is very knowledgable and truthful with not only real estate issues, but with the edumacation issues at Lodi Unified. You don't see any of these local realtors, slumlords or brokers refuting any of these statements, do you?

     
  • posted at 2:07 pm on Fri, Jan 22, 2010.

    Posts:

    observer, where are your skeptical complaints on edu tonight. Thanks to your utterly stupid comment this morning, this has become a very informative blog. And I agree that unless you are too busy or like throwing 6% away you should always sell your own home. A good real estate attorney, standard forms and a CPA to handle your tax matters will put that 6% right into your own pocket.

     
  • posted at 1:42 pm on Fri, Jan 22, 2010.

    Posts:

    Job loses are still taking place and the word on the housing market was grim to say theLeast. 10 million homes in full foreclosure and 1 out of every 4 are under water. I would guess it will be a cold day in hell before the market comes close to anythingnear normal….

     
  • posted at 12:57 pm on Fri, Jan 22, 2010.

    Posts:

    edumacation, ohhhhh I messed up, I should have said double up on the principal.

     
  • posted at 12:08 pm on Fri, Jan 22, 2010.

    Posts:

    Cogito- How right you are. I have done deals where I offered, paid and closed IN ONE DAY. All you have to do is meet at the county recorder, pay the the filing fees and file an abstract. No promises, no yada yada and everyone is happy. BTW you can conduct your title search yourself while at the recorders office. Make sure to check the Grantor-Grantee index, look for liens and title. You won't need title insurance unless you think you could have problems. Remember that almost every transaction goes through another layer of title searches - EACH time. Each title company usually has their own title plant. I usually get a FREE one + profile from two different Title companies, and compare notes. If there has been recent construction on the property, watch out for mechanics or materialmens liens, they have 90 days to file.IT IS EASY. NEVER HAD A PROBLEM---saved enough in middleman fees to buy several houses. Most of these houses pay for themselves IF YOU DON'T pay interest! Thats KEY! NOT A REALTOR!

     
  • posted at 11:30 am on Fri, Jan 22, 2010.

    Posts:

    I did a FSBO on my first house. It was so easy it was rediculous. They have self-explanatory contracts available. I sold my house in 3 days, at market value. I had a small window in which to buy my current home, so signing a contract with a Realtor was out of the question. The title company does all the real work anyway. Don't kid yourself. Realtors, however, are good to have during tough markets. But without one, you can come in at a lower price and still realize the same profits.

     
  • posted at 10:28 am on Fri, Jan 22, 2010.

    Posts:

    dogs4you- I am in the business of owning my own houses/property. I PAY CASH, and never interest and have an attorney who is also a A Realtor! You should hear what HE has to say! OUCH! He is not on a commission, is much cheaper--and is a TIGER for MY interests. He not a "closer" or "used car salesmen", but a respected attorney.There is a benefit to owning houses as investments---IF YOU OWN THE HOUSE, and charge low rents. As a result, the local rental market NEVER affects me.My rents are always the lowest. My vacancy rates are almost zip. I don't need to be greedy since I own the properties, pay low property taxes and have my own repair crew. Play this game any other way and you can have HUGE headaches. I also do not use property managers. They force me to raise rents to cover their fees. Its EASY work. Select the correct tenants and don't cheat them--you are retired.

     
  • posted at 10:12 am on Fri, Jan 22, 2010.

    Posts:

    Stuckinlodi- So you agree value of real estate agents is paperwork!Anyone can go to the local Realty board and buy a pack of contracts for less than $100! I encourage all who are interested to do that. Plus there are hundreds of part time agents with the same forms. Take the forms home and read them. Guess what? Most all the verbiage and mumbo jumbo is there for two reasons: 1) To protect the agents and2) To follow regulations concerning selling/buying house mediated by a third party such as an estate agent.Don't you see a difference between $100 and from $6,000 on a 100k house to $30,000 on a 500k house---for forms?Thats a HUGE difference. Mostly for talk and yada yada ""We have multiple offers and you better show you are serious with a high offer or the seller will be embarrased...and so will I ---if you don't have a reasonable offer..."Does all this sound familiar?"You better buy NOW, prices are going up""They ain't building land anymore..""50% of my buyers are investors or cash buyers..."

     
  • posted at 9:45 am on Fri, Jan 22, 2010.

    Posts:

    edumacation, have you given any thought of going into the business, or maybe you are. The old saying goes, if you can`t impress someone with your knowledge, dazzle them with your BS. With all your posts, I`ll take knowledge.If you can afford it, double up on the interest payments and watch what is owed on your home drop, in 5 years the house will be ours, and the savings on interest is unbelievable.

     
  • posted at 7:17 am on Fri, Jan 22, 2010.

    Posts:

    According to some posters here, if you go to the Dr. how dare the Dr. see you again for the same problem!! He might make more money which is so wrong! Likewise, if you cut your finger, do you need a brain surgeon? Real estate transactions are paperwork that can be learned and repeated over and over again. Buyers and Sellers have an obligation to do their own due diligence and can hire an attorney if they want to. They are advised of this in the .... paperwork.

     
  • posted at 6:37 am on Fri, Jan 22, 2010.

    Posts:

    These problems imply hypothetical questions that should be discussed by voters:1) Should California continue the practice of having non-lawyers (estate agents) act as legal counsel for buyers and sellers?If you want legal representation, hire a real estate attorney. Plus, they are cheaper. Attorneys will NEVER say... "house prices always go up..." Because they WILL get sued WHEN prices go down.CAR contracts indemnify most claims re: statements made by Realtors. Read the contract...EVERY WORD. Caveat Emptor!! Who represents YOU! 2) Should the state start its own FREE and public MLS? MLS's are the life-blood of the business. Without seller based contracts FORCING the BUYER to pay the commission of the SELLER, we could have more transparency and reward honesty instead of "salesmanship".If you are a prospective buyer and the seller signed a listing agreement with a person you know to be a liar, and if you really want the house, and the listing agreement is still good -then in most cases, you MUST PAY THE LISTING AGENT once your offer is accepted.

     
  • posted at 5:58 am on Fri, Jan 22, 2010.

    Posts:

    pre$$ure$on- Your comments are astute! It is not illegal for friends and family to be in the same business. One can be a broker, and another can be in the "stop foreclosure now, and let ME buy it" business. As long as the latter does not represent that they are a state licensed Realtor they can get away with it. Its called legal manipulation of the rules. Is it ethical? Not to me! re: Your question about multiple buy and sells -both sides- on the same house. I think that is probably legal or easy to position as legal transactions. But it does pose a different hypothetical question for society at large. Fact---The California state DRE was created by the state to require a license to be a quasi-legal (NON-LAWYER) representative for parties in real property transactions. Some states require a review by an UNBIASED attorney. California does not.

     
  • posted at 5:03 am on Fri, Jan 22, 2010.

    Posts:

    edu, I should rephrase myself. Many of these deals were very unethical, not criminal. I don't have to explain that to you. Just keep the facts coming and maybe the right people will take notice.

     
  • posted at 4:59 am on Fri, Jan 22, 2010.

    Posts:

    edu, I too, like Mr. Mertz's comments. But aren't the other two have most of their family and relatives in the RE industry? I see some sellers, buyers, appraisers, lenders and flippers amongst them. Like you say, they still will get their 3% by just putting their brokers hat on. Haven't some of these realtors sold some of these properties twice already and are waiting for them to be sold even a third time?

     
  • posted at 3:32 am on Fri, Jan 22, 2010.

    Posts:

    Tjefferson- I agree except the following two factors: 1) If salesmen can promote HIGHER prices (Penino.." We are looking for increases in the sale prices in the area...")(Underhill, "...Personally, I'm seeing a strong uptick in activity and upward pressure in prices. IT MAY BE SHORT-LIVED."!!!Since sales are commission based, as prices increase, so do commissions AND future prices ie "...house prices ONLY go up..."I think Mertz's comments were the most prudent. ie NOT an obvious cheerleader for BUY BUY BUY.2) Inventory--If pressure can be made to reduce inventory (by controlling local listings), this also creates competition for fewer "listed" houses.Theoretically, GOALS for this commission based business model are to keep INVENTORY as LOW as possible, selling PRICES HIGH as possible and locate, usually government -subsidized naiive buyers to be prospective willing and "qualified" buyers. "...Newbie buyers close faster, pay more, and don't waste my time with detailed questions..." This triad controls everything except appraisals, which is THE cornerstone to the whole business. Low appraisals interferes with each point of the TRIAD above.

     
  • posted at 3:31 am on Fri, Jan 22, 2010.

    Posts:

    Edumacation, your expertise on these matters is much appreciated. I see the market drooping once the government stops giving checks to buyers. I have also found in my life's experience, never believe the expertise of anyone whose current income depends on the sale of the product in question. Their motivations vary, but they are eternal optimists. Most of the people I know who have lost the most money in real estate in the last few years, are Realtors.

     
  • posted at 3:18 am on Fri, Jan 22, 2010.

    Posts:

    observer, as usual, nothing to add but your idiotic disses for edumacation and no meaningful content toward this blog. Are you related to reality? Fill this board up with those great informational blogs about these crooked family realtor and brokers that caused this mess in Lodi. They're selling those 50K eastsides estates for 100K, aren't they? How many foreclosures is F$M bank hiding or selling to wealthy Lodi investors on the side, edu?

     
  • posted at 3:01 am on Fri, Jan 22, 2010.

    Posts:

    Observer--I am waiting for REAL ANSWERS from those folks.The real answers are obvious:1) The BEST priced "deals" ie lowest prices/best value for location on MLS listed properties ONLY go to those who SEE THEM FIRST. And WHO is that? Usually, REALTORS and other members of the MLS!2)The Realtors Five D's are ALWAYS operative. I didn't make this up---I got in from a local Realtor.*Death**Disease***Divorce****Destitution*****DestructionOther than speculative investment or ---like the TV show The Jeffersons "---We are moving on up---" to that deluxe McMansion in the hooood..."The FIVE D's are what force a homeowner/mortgage holder/debt slave to be a MOTIVATED SELLER. If these people with any of the Five D's HAVE EQUITY, ie no HELOCS, Refi's or Second/Third Deeds of Trust, they do not require a SHORT SALE, FORECLOSURE or walk away. They can sell for any amount over what they owe.Who is the FIRST person who learns this information? THE LISTING BROKER! If its a deal they can still legally buy it. With the internet, FSBO's are the future.

     
  • posted at 2:39 am on Fri, Jan 22, 2010.

    Posts:

    QUESTION #2Looking at these facts for cash buyers: From the Cash buyers point of view, how many years will it take them to "break even" on their purchase?

     
  • posted at 2:38 am on Fri, Jan 22, 2010.

    Posts:

    That was one question concerning those people who use mortgages to finance a house.The next question concerns savers and non-investors who can pay cash for their house.Why would a prudent, prospective house buyer pay cash for a house knowing the following FACTS:1) 30 year mortgage extremely low interest rates (less than 5%) cause increased house prices because of increased mortgage PITI affordabilty.2) Temporary government attempts to keep house prices high and foreclosures and walk-aways low will end someday causing prices to decrease.3) On the DAY OF CLOSING on a cash purchase, the buyer will immediately lose the following amount of CASH value---they are paying for it:Cash buyers almost ALWAYS pay all closing costs--they are the ONLY one with money at the settlement table. 90% of the time, the seller is underwater and has no money to bring to the table. 6% Real estate sales fees, home inspection, termite inspection, escrow fees, closing costs, higher county property taxes because of bloated house prices, and higher homeowners premiums, legal due diligence, ALTA title insurance Continued facts ---for Question #2

     
  • posted at 2:20 am on Fri, Jan 22, 2010.

    Posts:

    7) Most new mortgages today are through the FHA. FHA has increased down payment requirements and fees.8) Most GSE's are bankrupt and in a sea of red ink.9) Mortgage companies are starting to do underwriting again, decreasing loan approvals.10) Due to rampant fraud in appraisal's, new regulations are more restrictive for government backed mortgages.11) Locally, over 3,000 houses have been approved to be built. Construction has stopped and will begin someday.12) New house construction costs (land, materials and labor) have greatly decreased since 2006.13)Concensus that there is uncertainty over the economy. Largest economic crisis since 1929.14) Skilled building trades and labor occupations are unemployed due to limited construction.In view of ALL of these un-disputable FACTS.Why do ALL OF YOU think that sales and house prices will continue to increase over the next five years?

     
  • posted at 2:13 am on Fri, Jan 22, 2010.

    Posts:

    I have ONE question for all three of you. Considering ALL FACTS :Knowing that house prices follow "affordability" as defined in monthly PITI.Look at the these factors:1) Today, 30 yr mortgage rates are less than 5% due to Government intervention to keep prices higher to prevent more mortgage defaults and walk aways. 2) There is huge inventory of houses that are not listed for sale, which temporarily reduces inventory and increases prices. They will be released someday, flooding local inventory.3) The Obama First time home buyer program ends April 30. This program temporarily boosted sales and house prices to stall more foreclcosures.4) Nationally, millions of 5 Yr Option ARM resets are due in 2010, forcing these mortgage holders to refinance a house that has lost significant value in an atmosphere of tighter lending requirements.5) The local unemployment rate is above 10% and is increasing. Additional layoffs from the local school district (the largest area employer) have not yet been announced. 6) Local average wages have been decreasing steadily over the past 5 years decreasing affordability (PITI).

     
  • posted at 12:55 am on Fri, Jan 22, 2010.

    Posts:

    OH year, now is a good time to buy yada yada yada. Hows that working out for all those people that listened to you and bought 30% ago in 2006/7. The correction isn't even done yet. The govt keeps interfering and kicking the can down the street. Watch this year, there will probably be as many if not more foreclosures, how's that going to work. As far as sale, that is all the people thinking they are going to be slumlords, Oh that's right rents are falling....this mess is years from being over, but hey realtors make money on the churn not the direction of real estate

     
  • posted at 12:10 am on Fri, Jan 22, 2010.

    Posts:

    Uh oh, wait until edu gets going on this article. You guys just better bend over and grab your ankles....you'll be in for the ride of your life.

     

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Lodi Unified leaders are moving Lodi and Tokay high school graduations from the Grape Bowl to the Spanos Center at UOP in Stockton. They cite limited seating, costs and unpredictable weather at the Grape Bowl. But others say graduations at the Grape Bowl are an important Lodi tradition, and one reason many supported renovating the stadium. What do you think?

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