Thursday, October 16, 2014
30 year fixed: 20% down = 4.00% with no points
30 year fixed: 10% down = 4.125% with one point
It may be time to pull the trigger on purchasing a home. BTW, my 11485 Moorpark #17, Studio City is open on Saturday from 2-5 and 629 N. Keystone in Burbank is open on Sunday, 2-5.
Saturday, October 11, 2014
The house is a flip and the new stuff is really nice, but an entire lower unit had been torn out on the order of L.A. City. And there were lots of brand-new concrete pours and patches which indicated lots of cracks and slipping. This is no surprise as the house is built on a hillside.
We had lots of inspections and estimates and the news wasn't so great. But two factors made this purchase a go: first, Jim and Elizabeth are up to the challenge of a not-perfect house and second, the sellers gave the buyers a huge, huge credit. (It's the largest credit of any real estate transaction I've been involved in.)
I am eager to see how Jim and Elizabeth (wonderful clients, btw) will fix this up. Here are pics of a friendly neighborhood kitty and also the sunset view from the front porch.
Thursday, October 09, 2014
Please visit JudyGraff.com and take a look at my newly-designed website. It has lots of new functionality plus many of the same popular features as the old one. Search the local mls, read my blog posts (without pictures), and get community news. Some bugs are still being worked out, but I hope you like it.
Tuesday, October 07, 2014
Saturday, October 04, 2014
I select Jinky's on Colfax and Ventura for the best all-around egg-type breakfast. Not only do they have many, many kinds of omelets and such, they also have quick service with a smile, celebrity spotting, a dog-friendly patio, and mimosas. Coffee is a bit pricey but you get a whole pot.
Now on to the really carbohydrate-y stuff that we won't admit we eat:
French toast even better than Mom used to make can be found at Tujunga Village's Aroma. This is dipped in the real egg batter stuff and is so rich that I dare you to finish an order. It's even better than nearby foodie-fave Girasol's brunch French toast. This is how I want to start my birthday day for the rest of my life.
Good old standby Du-Pars has the best regular pancakes (pictured above). Light, fluffy, and scrumptious, the order is so large that you'll want to share these (or maybe not). The parking lot there at Laurel and Ventura is a bit tricky, so go early.
What is it about banana pancakes? I don't know, but I crave these when the bananas are cooked in the batter, not just laid on top. Vivian's on Ventura, close to Vineland does a wonderful job on these noms (pictured above), and their patio is delightful as well. The other breakfast items are good, too, although they are a bit chintzy on the toast.
Yes, my weight is up 5 lbs from last year when I moved. Please feel free to comment, or add other faves.
Sunday, September 28, 2014
Long before there was a Studio City, Burbank, Toluca Lake...there was an SFV and here's a link to pictures
Take a look at these pictures from our land. These are from back in the day when "real estate" meant "farmland" or "belongs to the Catholic Church." Most of these were taken in the 1880s. Unrecognizable? I'll say. http://waterandpower.org/museum/Early_Views_of_the_San_Fernando_Valley.html. Thanks, Melinda, for the heads up!
Friday, September 26, 2014
Saturday, September 20, 2014
Plus, this is in the neighborhood that everybody loves -- Tujunga Village. Walk to Girasol, Vitello's, Aroma, groceries, cool little stores...
Friday, September 19, 2014
- Please don't bring your pet in the home with you. I, like you, love dogs more than people, but that sentiment isn't universally shared. It's not just that your pet might have an accident; it's that other guests may be afraid, allergic, etc. I'm sure your dog isn't aggressive but nobody else knows that -- plus, there may be pets in the home that get aggressive at the sight of your dog. Thanks!
- No matter how awesome your kids are, please keep them with you and maybe even hold their hands. Nobody wants an accident and your little ones are on unfamiliar turf. Nobody wants anything broken in the house, either. Thanks!
- This goes double for kids around outside swimming pools. Your toddler may swim like Diana Nyad, but you probably don't, I don't either, and why cause panic to rise among all guests when you turn your back for one minute? Thanks.
- This "please" comes with a story. The one time one of my open houses was burgled was right at the end of it. The people posed as open house guests just as we were wrapping up, putting things away, and I was distracted. They new I was distracted. My bad. The guys, who didn't look like potential home buyers, immediately went for the top drawer of the dresser and stole jewelry. Of course, I make my sellers take all valuables out of the house, but...If you are a couple of guys who come at the end of the open, or a posse of young adults, expect me or my trusty bouncer to escort you through and not leave you alone for a second. If you're really home buyers, you won't mind that, will you? Thanks!
I hope to see you at Sunday's open house at 11485 Moorpark #17 in Studio City.
Tuesday, September 16, 2014
Sunday, September 14, 2014
Wednesday, September 10, 2014
Sunday, September 07, 2014
This amazing Magnolia Park home will be on the market tomorrow for $779,000. Everything you could want is here: cool aesthetic vibe, great indoor-outdoor flow, big rooms, open floor plan, huge pool, beautiful xeriscape with fountains, big 2-car garage, chefs' kitchen and stellar location. Call me for more details or if you'd like to view it.
Friday, August 29, 2014
Wednesday, August 20, 2014
Saturday, August 16, 2014
Contact me if you're a serious buyer and if you think this might be right for you.
Monday, August 11, 2014
Rusty's Discount Pet Center in Studio City! I got to meet him on Saturday. He's a beautiful 19-month old collie, and he's really sweet and well-behaved. I was too shy to ask to take a selfie with him, though. The pet supply store is great, too. It's in the same strip mall as the famed (deservedly so) sushi restaurant, Katsu-ya.
Friday, August 08, 2014
http://www.boredpanda.com/cat-furniture/ Let's just do all of our decorating for our animals, right?
Thursday, July 31, 2014
So if a seller has property condition reports from another, earlier escrow, those must be given to the buyer, too, right? Ethically, yes. Legally, no.
I know; this is really surprising, and I just learned the legal answer myself. Part of the contractual legalese says the seller only discloses "known, material facts" and doesn't specify reports. And some unethical agents will say that they never read a particular report and therefore can't possibly "know" what's in it. I call bullshit, but there it legally is. Property sellers, your buyers will likely find out everything about your property anyway -- why risk their wrath? And a lawsuit? Buyers, think twice about getting into a transaction with a seller that appears to withhold information -- if they seem to be concealing something, they probably are!
Friday, July 25, 2014
Zillow and Trulia are having discussions about merging. What does that mean to Los Angeles-area home buyers and sellers? It will make home searches easier. Rather than having two portals to view, you'll now have one. No more cross-checking, or getting the same listing from separate sources. And by the way, the sales info on all of the megasites comes from, yes, the local multiple listing service. Not the Zestimates or tax records, of course, but the pictures, descriptions, showing info, amenities, etc. -- we Realtors create that and add that to our local multiple listing services.
Thursday, July 17, 2014
Lately I've been viewing and showing condos and townhomes in Studio City, Sherman Oaks, Burbank, Toluca Lake, North Hollywood...there are lots of nice, and not so nice, properties on the market now. Here's a sample of what I've seen.
Inventory is not as short for Los Angeles condos and townhomes, so there are still plenty of nice units out there.
Inventory is not as short for Los Angeles condos and townhomes, so there are still plenty of nice units out there.
Friday, July 11, 2014
Perhaps buyers realized that lots of home prices might come down a bit in the next few months. That often starts to happen in early July. Maybe sellers realized that prices have peaked for the year, too. And then, interest rates are still low and haven't seen the predicted rise.
Nobody can predict the market, but I would recommend that sellers sell now, especially in the areas of Burbank and Studio City -- people want to buy homes in good school districts before their kids start school. And, if interest rates do go up, as all experts predict they will by the end of the year, that will have a negative effect on home prices. And I would recommend that buyers buy now -- interest rates won't be this low much longer.
Tuesday, July 01, 2014
Thursday, June 26, 2014
housing costs are a greater burden here in the L.A. area than in any other metro area. It's nice to have it confirmed, eh? That's not just for mortgages, it's for rent, too. And this statistic is from a study was done by Harvard. The study sites stagnant wages as the primary contributing factor. (photo credit: Patrick T. Fallon/Bloomberg; article by Tim Logan)
Wednesday, June 25, 2014
This past weekend, I had the opportunity to show property in Country Club Park, a lovely area that I had never explored before. Where’s that? It’s just off of Wilshire and Olympic in mid-central L.A. That’s an area, or at least an intersection, that most of us have all been in before. However, like much of Los Angeles, residential neighborhoods can be dramatically different from the commercial parts of the nearby main roads. (BTW, the house pictured above and below is the Milbank Estate. That wasn't the property I showed, unfortunately.)
Country Club Park was once the western edge of the city. In the 1920’s, large homes were built that reflected the popular architectural styles of the times: craftsman, Tudor Revival, Spanish Colonial Revival, and Mediterranean Revival. Of course, land was relatively easy to come by then, so big lots, broad lawns, and mature foliage are characteristic of this neighborhood.
Country Club Park is also designated an HPOZ, or historic preservation overlay zone. This zone preserves the distinct architectural character of the neighborhood houses, provided that they conform to the style and period being preserved. If you are a homeowner in a HPOZ, and you want to change the exterior of your historic home, you’ll need to get permission from the 5-member HPOZ board. Minor repairs are easy to approve, of course, but if you want to substantially change the outside, it will take longer and may not be approved. Of course, you can change the inside without the board’s permission. L.A. City’s Office of Historic Planning provides a guide to maintaining your historic home.
Here’s another benefit to owning a historic home in a HPOZ: you may qualify for tax savings through the Mills act. Qualifying owners can receive a potential property tax reduction and use the savings to help rehabilitate, restore and maintain their historic homes.
For more info on HPOZs and the Mills Act, please visit preservation.lacity.org.
Thursday, June 19, 2014
Wednesday, June 18, 2014
Saturday, June 14, 2014
I am now writing short features about San Fernando Valley real estate and the home buying and selling process for Examiner.com. Please visit my page there at http://www.examiner.com/real-estate-in-los-angeles/judy-graff and subscribe. Thanks!
Thursday, June 12, 2014
Here's a great article from today's L.A. Times. It states that the market is settling down, there aren't as many price escalations, etc. Here's a quote:
"We're bumping along a ceiling. I really can't see values going up much more," said Steven Thomas, of ReportsOnHousing.com, which analyzes Southern California housing markets. "Buyers are homing in on trying to pay a fair value. A year ago, everyone was willing to pay extra. Now that bidding up is not happening."
This doesn't mean that multiple offers are over, however -- just that there won't be 20-40 offers for the same property, we hope.