I attended a community outreach program in the South Bay, directed towards homeowners with questions and concerns regarding loan mods, short sales, and foreclosures. The panel consisted of several prominent advisors in various professional fields, with much advice to give. There was a CPA, a Non-Profit advisor, a Realtor, an economist, and an attorney (and NO, I am not leading up to a joke). Clearly these individuals are top in their field, and I stress, in their field. Everything discussed was very informative and anyone attending the event may have taken some valuable details that would be to their benefit. The one sticker in my socks that I couldn’t quite shake was a closing comment made by the attorney: a homeowner has options, and one is, they may perform a loan modification while their Realtor is negotiating a short sale. That sounds like a 2-way deal to me. If I wasn’t so skeptical when that comment was mentioned, hearing that would’ve made me happier than someone saying I don’t have to pay taxes for this year. During the Q&A, one individual asked to have the statement confirmed, the attorney simply nodded yes with no further affirmation, while the Realtor in the panel chimed in stating it was a case by case / dependant on the lender situation.
Though being a general answer, I’ll accept the Realtor’s comment over the attorney’s, primarily because, being an expert in this field, the agent has no need to make any assumptions about the inner workings of a short sale transaction, furthermore this Realtor has two years my senior in this particular area of real estate. As a side note: short sales have always been around, however in the last five years by no accident, have become the latest thing. The first two of these five years I merely dodged short sales and passed them off to a Realtor much like the one at this community event. At any rate, I will be on the lookout for those loving lenders who allow a short sale/loan modification to happen simultaneously, because currently, Chase and Wells Fargo aren’t in that club. I have one deal going where the client has been urging the loan modders to close her file, while in the meantime, I’ve been working to get things going with Chase, however, the bank insists the borrower generates a written statement to declare the loan modification process is over with, in order to move forward with any short sale procedures.
When there’s a sale date on someone’s house, seeking advice from the right professional is key. If someone is seeking legal advice, they must ask specifically for an attorney. If tax advice is needed, talking directly to a CPA would be wise. Finally if there’s a need to know as to which steps to take in short selling a home: Ask a Realtor.
In light of the upcoming storms, we wanted to provide you with information and tips from various agencies:
National Weather Service:
• For storm information visit http://www.weather.gov
Sandbag sites listed below are managed by the Santa Clara Valley Water District and are open from late November through April each season.
• Santa Clara Valley Water District Warehouse is located at 5905
Winfield Blvd. San Jose, CA.
• For more information and locations call (888)439-6624 or visit
• For flood warnings please visit
• Residents who spot downed trees or other creek blockages are
encouraged to report that information to the water districts watershed
hotline (408) 265-2607 ext. 2378 during business hours or use the
Access Valley Water online reporting system at www.valleywater.org
• For downed trees on sidewalks or roadways, call 911 and also call
Parks and Public Works at (408)399-5770
Reporting a Downed Power Line and Safety Tips:
• If you see a downed power line, assume it is energized and keep
yourself and others away.
• Call 911 immediately to report the location of the downed line then 1-
800-743-5002, PG&E’s 24-Hour Emergency and Customer Service
• During and after a storm, please keep away from flooded areas and
downed trees, as these areas could be hiding an energized power
• For more information about downed power lines please visit
• For information on being prepared during a power outage please visit
the Office of Emergency Services at
Stay Safe and Dry!
Freddie Mac released its U.S. Economic and Housing Market Outlook for November; showing what a healthy national housing market should look like taking into account recent trends, key housing indicators and the shifting demographic patterns that will define a new and realistic trajectory over the next five years. A healthy housing market should have activity below the levels recorded during the peaks of the prior decade.
Outlook Highlights. What a healthy housing market should look like:
Housing starts increasing to about 1.7 to 1.8 million dwellings per year compared with 2.1 million in 2005.
Home sales increasing to about 5 percent of the housing stock, or about 6.5 to 7.0 million homes per year, compared with sales of 7 percent of the stock in 2005.
U.S. house price appreciation rising gradually to about 3 percent per year compared to 11 percent of 2005.
Vacancy rates easing further to about 1.7 percent on for-sale homes and 8 percent for rental homes, down from peaks of about 3 percent in 2008 and 11 percent in 2009, respectively.
Serious delinquency rates nearing 2 percent, down from a peak of 9.5 percent in early 2010.
For more info:
From babies who adore you to teens who ignore you, kids change — and so do their storage needs. Here’s how to organize kids’ rooms from cradle to college.
Toddlers and elementary age
Look ‘em in the eye. Stow books and puzzles on a low magazine rack or shelving unit so toddlers and elementary-age children can grab a good read or brain teaser on a whim. As children grow, paint the shelf to suit changing tastes and use it for teen magazines, framed photos, and school books.
Cornering the market. Young kids love nooks, so create a cozy hideaway by arranging storage units — open shelves, a desk top, and cabinets — so they (mostly) enclose one corner of your kid’s room. Bookshelves and kids’ desks range from $50 to $200.
Stock up with plenty of games, books, toys, and crafts supplies. Paint cabinet doors with blackboard paint to add an eye-level creative opportunity.
Corral the bling. Little girls often possess a cartload of hair ribbons, barrettes, and bows. Look for special organizers that keep them on display, orderly, and within easy reach. One option: Sort items into the pockets of a clear vinyl shoe holder ($10) that fits on the back of the door.
Tweens, teens, and beyond
A magnetic personality. A bulletin board is a great way for your tween or teen to organize and display all those photos of friends and Fido. Or, coat a vertical surface (such as a closet door) with magnetizing primer ($25/quart) and paint over the primer with a hip color. Use assorted magnets and magnetic clips and holders to display artwork, sports schedules, and homework reminders.
Making a (book)case. A bookcase headboard ($100-$200) is a grown-up way for your teen or college student to keep reading materials organized and the tablet reader handy. Platform storage beneath the bed provides room for drawers or cubbies that can hold baskets and bins for corralling small stuff.
Explore the shallows. Commandeer space between wall studs and create a shallow storage niche outfitted with hooks, shelves, or rods for organizing jewelry and other smallish gear. Add a mirrored door to keep clutter out of sight.
Lofty ambitions. For a small bedroom, a loft-style bed offers a fun spot for snoozing and space below for bookcase storage, a futon, or a study desk. Loft beds for kids’ rooms start at $150 and range to $3,000 or more.
Keep rolling. Give your tween or teen a rolling caddy ($25-$80) for storing personal bath supplies, jewelry, cosmetics, and hair gear. The caddy stores in the bedroom and rolls to a nearby bath and back.