I get asked about this all the time!

Maybe the most asked question I get is, “What are the crime stats in this area?”  That’s a tough one because perception is not always reality.  However, the San Diego Union tribune releases this handy interactive map that shows exactly what is happening and where.  Simply click here to access the map.

 

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Proud to serve

The Pacific Southwest Association of REALTORS (PSAR) recently announced the 2018 Board of Directors.  I was honored to be nominated and elected to serve our members for 2018.  PSAR is an organization that is dedicated to serving our REALTOR and affiliate members and provides a much needed voice to local and statewide matters affecting real estate and home ownership.

According the the PSAR website, “The Pacific Southwest Association of REALTORS® exists to enhance the real estate profession, to protect private property rights and improve the regulatory environment. The Association maintains a leadership role today assuring each REALTOR® member the opportunity to seek new heights in their professional lives. Being a REALTOR® is a source of pride and prestige.

Congrats to all the incoming Board.  For more information please visit PSAR here.

Summertime…and the livings easy…

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I have always thought of San Diego as, “That sleepy little beach town just south of S. California.”  Let’s face it, we are NOT Los Angeles or Orange County.  San Diego has it’s own vibe and pace.  We are laid back and buzzed on craft beer.  We surf, skate, hike, wander, and do “Local” better than most.  With that said I offer up some of the best things to do this summer in San Diego courtesy of SanDiego.org.

FREE things to do:  Beaches.  It’s no secret San Diego is home to some of the best beaches in the world.  We offer everything from surf beaches to walking beaches.  Kids beaches to adult beaches.  A few of my favs include Law St. in Pacific Beach, Coronado, San Elijo, Ocean Beach, and of course Mission Beach.

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Balboa Park after Dark.  Consistently rated as one of the best urban parks in the country, Balboa Park comes alive at night!  Check it out!

Attractions:  Where to start?  The Zoo and Wild Animal Park?  Sea World?  Del Mar Races?  LegoLand?  Belmont Park?  Birch Aquarium?  Cabrillo National Monument?  OK take your pick!

4th of July:  San Diego has deep military roots and no one does Independence Day like San Diego!  From the parade on Coronado to the massive and synced up fireworks displays, San Diego does the 4th of July right!

Del Mar Horse Racing:  There is literally no better place on Earth then opening day at Del Mar.  Where the turf meets the surf!  Racing starts on July 19th, and in addition to racing be sure to enjoy the several concerts happening as well.

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Real Estate War Stories…Part 1

What if you knew the answer to the most often asked questions when it comes to buying or selling real estate?  Would that give you an advantage and help you make better decisions?  Of course it would!  Well that’s exactly what I want to do for you…share all the best questions and answers.  Along the way I will also provide insight on the top pitfalls and how to avoid them.

Look, real estate is a tricky proposition and no two transactions are alike.  Even seasoned agents come up against things they have never experienced from time to time.  I’ll get it started and I’ll ask you to contribute by asking me anything about real estate you’d like.  I’ll share those in future posts.

Question #1:  What is the first step I should take when buying a home?  

Surprisingly, I get this from both buyers and sellers who have to sell before they buy.  And depending on where you are, the answer can be different.  The simple answer is to contact a Realtor who can help you get started, however it goes deeper than that.  If you are a buyer I would suggest you contact a mortgage lender who can start the pre-approval process and help you understand how much you can afford, what down payment options exist, and what your monthly mortgage will be.

Now here’s the catch, avoid the one-size fits all or loan of the month pitch.  Every borrower is unique and a good lender will ask about your goals, personal financials, discuss options, and tailor a program that meets your specific needs.  This is probably the largest financial transaction you will ever make and you need to work with reputable professionals who really have your best interest at heart.

Now, about that “contact a Realtor first” option.  It’s not a bad idea to reach out and ask a Realtor for a referral.  Contrary to popular belief, Realtors do not get anything for referring a lender, in fact it’s illegal to do so with the anticipation of something of value in return.  We do it because we know everything hinges on the financing and when we can tap into professional relationships with people who have a proven track record of getting the tough deals done, well it just improves the odds of a smooth transaction.

If you need to sell before you buy I would suggest contacting that Realtor, or, if you have been happy with your current lender, contact them directly.  Keep in mind the market and rates may have changed since you got your current mortgage, but be sure to ask about any current client loyalty programs, rate breaks or discounts on loan fees, etc.  At the end of the day your current lender wants to keep your business and may offer you incentives.

Now it’s your turn!  What questions do you have?  Send me an e-mail to smartREsolutions@gmail.com and I will post and answer in a future post.  Thanks!

 

RED Day. Renew. Energize. Donate.

RD1RED Day is Keller Williams’ annual day of community service. Each year on the second Thursday in May, every Keller Williams office shuts their doors and, as a group, gives back to their local community.  With over 160,000 KW Associates around the world, that’s a lot of giving back!

This year KW Chula Vista spent the day at Trolley Trestle.  This organization is overseen by South Bay Community Services and offers affordable, transitional housing for former foster youth and/or homeless youth while they finish school or complete job training. They welcome emancipated youth ages 16-24 and parenting youth.

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KW Chula Vista associates, staff and affiliated vendors, spent the day helping the residents clean and organize their apartments and community spaces.

If you would like to support this amazing organization please click through and make your donation or volunteer!  Trolley Trestle Donations.

You can also check out this short video to learn more.

Welcome to Real Estate Life.

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Hey everyone. Man, it’s been a minute since I updated my blog!  So long in fact, that I decided to completely scrap the old and relaunch with a new look and updated design.  So welcome to Real Estate Life!

Of course I spent several years publishing The Real Estate Rap, and decided to keep all that content (well most of it anyway) in tact.  So there are a ton of old posts you can check out…or not…if you’d like.  I am making a commitment to post twice a week, with a different flavor than I previously did.  The focus will be more on the lifestyle of an active real estate professional in San Diego.  And really more like the lifestyle of a family of Realtors, who live, work, and play everyday in our amazing part of the world.

If you didn’t know, my wife Kathy, is a fabulous Realtor as well!  In fact she is a Top 10 performer with Keller Williams in La Mesa.  She works all over San Diego, mostly by referral, and is one of the best negotiators I know.  Our son, Cooper, just graduated from San Diego State University with a degree in Business Management and Entrepreneurship.  Cool, right?  Oh, and he also just got his real estate license making him the 3rd generation of Realtors in our family.  Kathy’s mom and step dad got it all started for us way back in the day.

So there you have it.  A newly revamped blog, some background on who the heck we are, and a look into what you can expect going forward.  I hope you’ll check in later as I promise to share some shenanigans from a fun event I’m going to tonight sponsored by the Pacific Southwest Association of Realtors.  Fun fact…in real estate, if you play your cards right, you’ll get plenty of free food and drinks!  Later!

 

Keller Williams La Mesa to host fundraiser for American Legion Post 282

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RED Day, the annual Keller Williams day of community service, is fast approaching.  RED Day, which stands for Renew, Energize, Donate, is an annual event that is supported by thousands of Keller Williams agents across the globe.  Each year on the second Thursday of May, associates spend the day away from their businesses serving worthy organizations and causes in their communities. RED Day is just another example of our commitment to each other and to the cities and towns where we live and work.

This year the associates at Keller Williams La Mesa chose American Legion Post 282 to support.  Here is what Post 282 Commander Jack Porath had to say:

On 14 May, a fund-raiser is being held in our upstairs hall for the benefit of our Club and in particular, our Building Fund with the goal of renovating the upstairs restrooms thereby helping with hall utilization and increased income possibilities .  There will be some terrific prizes offered.  The dinner is being cooked by our own Lenny.   It is requested that you all respond and enjoy the food and hospitality to include a band.  Tickets will soon be on sale at the Canteen ($20 and $25 if purchased at the door) as well as the tickets for the special drawing.

 In my memory, I cannot remember when any civilian entity came forward without being asked, and then asked US if they could do a fundraiser FOR US.  Not only that, but they are doing some other facility projects as well.  What can we do to help?  Attend the event.  Support it.  Tickets will be on sale via the internet and in our Canteen.  More to follow!  If you cannot attend, please consider a donation.  After all, it is for the benefit of OUR facility. 

 Yes, it is on a Thursday night.  Yes, I know that this may not be convenient.  Yes, I know it would be better if it were held on another night.  But, I also know that if we do not respond in kind, many outside our organization will wonder where we are and do we really care.  There is a very good reason it is on a Thursday night and for that good reason, it cannot be changed.   The theme is country hoedown.

 It’s our pleasure to serve those who have served us and we look forward to seeing YOU at this fantastic event.  For more information or to purchase tickets or make a donation please visit our event page .

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