July 3, 2022

HAPPY FOURTH OF JULY!

fireworks

 

The Fourth of July has always been one of our favorite holidays.  It’s a time of friends and family, and an opportunity to celebrate all the things that make our country such a special place.  Happy Fourth of July!

Posted in General
June 9, 2022

LOOK WHO IS MALAGA COVE'S TOP AGENT IN MAY!

 

LOOK WHO IS MALAGA COVE'S TOP AGENT IN MAY! 
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Once again our own Tuba has proven how effective she is in helping her clients. Whether representing an owner sell their home, or helping a buyer find that perfect home, she is 24/7 in making sure her clients have her full attention in helping with their real estate needs.

Congrats again Tuba, for showing your clients past and present how dedicated you are.

May 24, 2022

Palos Verdes Homes Owners Can Enjoy Fleet Week This Year, For the First Time Over the Memorial Day Weekend!

This is the first time Fleet Week will take place on Memorial Day weekend, instead of the Labor Day weekend.

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  • This is a great event that the Palos Verdes Peninsula residents will be able to participate in this year with the two U.S. Navy ships — the USS Essex and the USS Portland — will anchor in our local Outer Harbor this week.

LA Fleet Week has returned live for the first time in more than two years, after the pandemic drove it into an online presence only. So now its back and the organizers are expecting a super-sized celebration that will bring back much of the familiar, but with new twists, including non-stop live entertainment. The free event will run from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. from Friday to Monday, May 27-30.

Festivities this year will also wrap along the entire waterfront, with the visiting Navy ships open for tours at the Outer Harbor and the main expo at the World Cruise Center and USS Iowa — all to be connected by ongoing shuttle services.

“We have a unique opportunity to have the waterfront completely connected,” said Jonathan Williams, president and CEO of the Pacific Battleship Center and president of the L.A. Fleet Week Foundation. “After all these years, people have wanted to see the downtown and the water connected and this year we’re testing that.”

The two visiting ships — the USS Essex, a helicopter carrier; and the USS Portland, an amphibious transport dock ship — are making their Fleet Week debuts this year.

Tours of both ships will be offered on a first-come, first-served basis, with lines forming at the main expo venue and shuttles taking tourists south to the Outer Harbor, where the ships will be docked through the weekend.

Having the lines on the main venue footprint, Williams said, will enable people to keep an eye on the best times to line up while still enjoying the rest of the festivities when the queues are too long.

“I’m excited Fleet Week is back and in person,” said Elise Swanson, president and CEO of the San Pedro Chamber of Commerce, which is coordinating volunteers for the event. “We’re getting a lot of our experienced volunteers signed up and there’s a sense of excitement that it’s back.”

The U.S. Navy holds Fleet Week events at ports throughout the United States, offering residents a chance to tour active-duty ships, talk with sailors and learn more about the Navy. This year’s LA Fleet Week, on Memorial Day, weekend will coincide with the New York Fleet Week event on the opposite coast.

Instead of a high-profile outdoor concert to kick off this year’s Los Angeles event, the 2022 Fleet Week will provide ongoing live entertainment across all four days, giving it more of a festival vibe, Williams said.

The port town’s adjacent downtown dining and shopping district in San Pedro, is gearing up for what is often a flood of sailors and civilians visiting the area’s restaurants, bars and art galleries. This year will also offer more visibility throughout other parts of Los Angeles.

The biggest change, of course, is the timing: held on Labor Day weekend in the past, the event, as of this year, has now permanently switched to Memorial Day weekend, which provides some advantages such as more temperate weather. Hopefully temperatures will remain in the low 70's for the Memorial Day Weekend.

The Memorial Day timing also provides a natural tie-in to a holiday that the USS Iowa — San Pedro’s battleship museum at the center of Fleet Week’s expo footprint — has already built into a big draw, with a patriotic ceremony, live radio broadcasts and booths providing services for veterans.

This year’s event will also include a stronger military emphasis, with wider participation by the Army and Air Force, along with the usual Navy, Coast Guard and Marines.

Annual visitors will still get to enjoy many of the regular events that will return again this year, including:

  • Tallship Village with daily sails from Friday through Monday, including cannon battle sails, sunset sails and an educational sail.
  • Exhibits and displays, including helicopters and armored vehicles.
  • STEAM displays, with androids, robotics and emerging technology.
  • Competitions, including dodgeball among military teams.
  • Galley Wars, with chefs from the military branches competing.
  • Aerial demonstrations.
  • Live entertainment.

Late on the festival’s closing day, a Memorial Day service will be held at the Iowa.

Parking will be available at various lots in and around the downtown San Pedro area, including the Topaz Building at Sixth and Center streets; on the waterfront (a new lot has opened next to the Los Angeles Maritime Museum, at Sixth and Harbor Boulevard); and at outlying parking areas available at and around the Outer Harbor, 3011 Miner St., with shuttle service available to the main venue.

Photo of USS Spruance courtesy of Chuck Bennett (Daily Breeze)

Posted in Palos Verdes Blog
May 23, 2022

Is Southern California’s job rebound‘too much good stuff’?

    Is Southern California's job rebound too much

                  ‘too much good stuff’?

          

          Local joblessness has fallen to 4.1% from 17.6% 

 

Two years ago, the initial lock downs of the  pandemic era crushed Southern California’s job market.

But a stunning rebound from those antsy, dark days now raises questions about an economy challenged with “too much good stuff.”

Two springs ago, bosses in Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside and San Bernardino counties cast aside 1.27 million workers as government officials and business leaders struggled to figure out how to slow the spread of the coronavirus.

That staff-slashing spree pushed the four-county unemployment rate to a pandemic high of 17.6%, up from 3.9%.

Layoffs and firings soon morphed into renewed hiring. Trillions in economic stimulus were thrown at the national economy to stabilize businesses, then reignite them. Consumers received enormous aid to keep bills paid and food on the table.

And do not forget the business boost from the medical miracle of coronavirus vaccines. These breakthroughs dramatically trimmed the risks of hospitalization or death for COVID-19 patients. Still, 1 million Americans have died.

So two years after record-shattering job losses, April’s employment report from the state’s Employment Development Department details a remarkable recovery.

Southern California’s worker count is just 108,000 short of pre-pandemic employment. Joblessness in the region has fallen to 4.1%.

What’s the beef?

The unprecedented help given to consumers and corporations restored employment and boosted savings accounts and investment values. At the latest count, the cost of living soared 10% in a year in the Inland Empire and 8.5% in L.A.-O.C.

Worker shortage

Consider the number of Southern Californians who are officially out of work.

When the virus struck, roughly 1 in 6 local workers lost a job. The official number of the unemployed swiftly grew four-fold.

The rehiring spree has left just 363,000 unemployed as of April 2022 — that’s roughly one-third less than the average number of out-of-work Southern California since 1990.

And you wonder why the average weekly wage for the region is up 15% in the two years ended in September 2021?

Local logistics shops cut 28,000 jobs when the virus hit, but since that low point, 111,000 such jobs have been added �

Shopping spree

Coronavirus changed how we shopped for the goods we need.

A huge winner was the transportation and warehouse industries as online retail grew even faster.

Local logistics shops cut 28,000 jobs when the virus hit, but since that low point, 111,000 such jobs have been added — or roughly four times the virus-linked layoffs.

Early in the pandemic, there were fears shopping centers might become extinct. Southern California’s store owners cut 150,000 jobs as clicking for goods at home became too easy.

But the “death of the mall” thesis was proven wrong. Folks wanted the in-person shopping experience, and brick-and-mortar merchants have now replaced all their pandemic job cuts.

Of course, this leads to a new question — do we now have too many people handling the shopping needs of Southern Californians?

Real worries

Another huge early winner in the pandemic was the property business.

Cheap mortgages and a thirst for larger living spaces drove demand for home purchases, rental units and mortgages.

Starting this year, though, mortgage rates that fell below 3% mid-pandemic have jumped above 5%.

That’s quickly chilled the real estate business.

Bosses in real estate, finance and construction initially cut 76,000 jobs but have refilled 63,000 as the property game heated up. But the sudden real estate chill has cost 4,000 workers their jobs in recent months.

Owners of eateries in Southern California cut 300,000 jobs as pandemic business limitations made operations difficult or impossible. But loosening restrictions and the populace's urge to get out allowed eateries to replace all but 22,000 of those lost jobs. (Frederic J. Brown/AFP/Getty Images/TNS)

Photos & article courtesy of Orange County Register

Posted in Palos Verdes Blog
May 5, 2022

Palos Verdes Marymount California University Closing

Marymount California University Closing After 54 Years!

After 54 years on the Palos Verdes Peninsula, Marymount California University will be closing its doors.

This large campus recently announced that after years of financial struggles, declining enrollment, rising costs and the coronavirus, they have decided to close its doors. Earlier the school had been optimistic about being able to merge with Saint Leo University, a larger Catholic campus in Central Florida. Sadly the merger didn't happen and so the 500 students and 140 employees will be leaving the campus as of August 31,2022.

Marymount College has roots dating back to the 1930's. It was founded in 1968, and has been a small liberal arts college throughout its history offering an associate degree, nine bachelor degrees and a master of business administration degree. In the US News & Worlds Reports 2022 college rankings, it listed Marymount California University as the 12th most ethnically diverse liberal arts college in the nation.

Photo courtesy of Marymount College

Posted in Community
April 26, 2022

Documents You Need to Get a Home Loan

Documents You Need to Get a Home Loan

Before approving a mortgage, lenders require documentation in order to verify your identity and creditworthiness. Lenders want to see proof of income and assets, for example, to ensure you qualify for a loan.

 

Depending on the type of home loan, the process can take time. Being prepared can speed up several steps. It’s wise to gather all the necessary documentation prior to applying for your loan.

 

The amount and types of information needed vary depending on the type of loan, but in general, here’s an idea of what you’ll need:

 

√ Tax returns for the past two years
√ W-2 forms for the past two years
√ Paycheck stubs from the past few months
√ Proof of previous mortgage or rent payments for the past year
√ A list of all your debts, including credit cards, student loans, auto loans and alimony
√ A list of all your assets, including bank statements, auto titles, real estate, and any investment accounts

 

Tax returns. Lenders require that you submit full tax returns that will be scrutinized for signs of loan fraud. Borrowers must sign IRS Form 4506-T, giving the lender permission to get your tax transcripts directly from the IRS for comparison. This is done to avoid fraud and has become standard practice in the industry. Tax documents should be maintained for three to seven years depending on your situation.

 

W-2 Forms. In addition to tax returns, lenders also want to see a copy of your most recent W-2s. Two years worth of W2s may be required under certain circumstances. If you have misplaced your copies, you have some choices for getting a replacement. The quickest and easiest means (also should be free) is to contact your employer or former employer. Also, the IRS can send of a complete copy of your old tax returns (which include a copy of your W2) for a fee, and this can take a long time to receive.

 

Paycheck stubs. Pay stubs are required to show the lender that you are still employed and still earning at least the same amount of money shown on your tax returns and loan application. Lenders will also perform an employment verification again shortly before final approval and closing of your loan. You should be able to obtain copies of your pay stub from your employer. If your current or previous employer used a system such as ADP, it will keep a record of all your paycheck stubs, even from previous jobs.

 

Rent/Mortgage Payments. Lenders may ask to see up to one year of consistent rent or mortgage payments to ensure you’ve paid on time. This can be done by providing canceled checks from your bank. If canceled checks or other documentation are unavailable, your landlord or current mortgage lender can a write a letter confirming you’ve paid on time.

 

List of debts. Now that you’ve told the lender exactly how much money you make on a regular basis, it’s time to tell them how much you spend. In order to determine your debt-to-income ratio, a major factor in the approval of any loan, you must spell out all your debts, including credit cards, auto payments and student loans. Child support and alimony payments should also be listed here. Be honest, because the lender will cross reference what you submit with your credit report and bank statements.

 

List of assets. In order to prove your financial standing, including the source of your down payment, lenders require that you submit two months worth of bank statements. These documents will be scrutinized to ensure you’re capable of repaying the loan. Lenders want to know whether you saved up the down payment yourself or received the amount another way. Lenders may also want to confirm that you have enough reserves to continue making your mortgage payment in the event of a financial emergency, so be prepared to show statements from investment and other types of savings accounts.

 

Those are the important documents any lender will require, however, other documents might be needed depending on your circumstances. If you’re self employed or are buying a second home, for example, lenders perform a lot more due diligence.

 

Other documents you may need include:

 

√ A letter verifying gift funds are actually a gift and not a loan
√ A rental agreement if you’re renting out a property
√ Proof of rental property income
√ Proof of your child’s age if you’re factoring child support as income
√ Bankruptcy discharge papers if you’ve ever filed for bankruptcy

 

 

Posted in Mortgage Loans
April 22, 2022

Prop 19 Property Tax Base Transfer For Eligible Homeowners

Heard about the Proposition 19 property tax break?
Wondering who qualifies?
Curious to see the tax break in action?


This month, C.A.R. began running a new consumer ad campaign to educate consumers who might benefit from Proposition 19. In addition to a targeted ad campaign, we've created a new website (prop19taxbreak.com) for consumers to get up-to-date information on this potential property tax break. One helpful feature of the site is the
examples of how the tax break actually works.

One example your clients can access on the site:
A 55-year-old couple purchased their home 30 years ago for $110,000. The taxable value of their home is now $200,000 (the $110,000 tax base value increasing 2% each year for 30 years). Their annual property tax bill is $2,200 (1.1% multiplied by the taxable base). Under Prop 19, the couple can sell their home for $600,000 and transfer the property tax base of their original home to a replacement home anywhere
in California, up to three times.

If the couple sells their home for $600,000 and buys a replacement home for the same amount or less, the couple could transfer the lower tax base of their original home to the replacement home and save $4,400 on their annual property tax bill. By transferring the original home’s tax base ($200,000) to their replacement home, the couple would pay the same amount in property taxes ($2,200) after moving – instead of paying $6,600 on the replacement home’s purchase price of $600,000.

Visit the website to learn more about eligibility and how you
can take advantage of this tax break.

Posted in Real Estate
April 15, 2022

Palos Verdes Market Review In April

Our community is in full bloom this April! From home gardens to wildflower sightseeing and garden parties to spring festivals, there are plenty of opportunities to enjoy the outdoors.  

As we look back on last month's real estate activity, which marked the start of the spring selling season, we see some good news for buyers. Nearly half of the Palos Verdes markets reported a year-over-year increase in inventory! In seller news, roughly half of the markets reported an increase in the number of sales, and nearly all of them saw a year-over-year increase in sales prices.  

For a review of the Palos Verdes real estate market, click on our Palos Verdes Market Intelligence Report for neighborhood overviews, current statistics, and trends. 

Read on below for fun things to do this month. This month we're featuring DIY staging tips to increase your home's sale price, Easter activities that are fun for the whole family, and the best places to eat when heading to a Dodger game!

If you are thinking about buying, selling, or any other real estate resources, our team is here to help! 
 
 
 
3 Flying Mane Lane, Rolling Hills, CA 90274
4 Bedrooms | 5 Bathrooms | 3,452 Square Feet
Offered at $5,000,000
 
 
Get Your Copy Here
 

Why spend thousands of dollars for a home staging professional when you can do the job yourself for a fraction of the cost? To learn about the best ways to stage your home, check out this article from Architectural Digest

 

Many of our favorite springtime events are back this year with in-person celebrations! Easter is such a fun time; we hope you have fun, whether coloring eggs at home or joining an Easter Egg Hunt out and about! These Spring rituals are such a fun part of being in Los Angeles. Here are some fun ways to celebrate Easter in and around Los Angeles.

 
Baseball season is back in Southern California, and two of Major League Baseball’s most exciting teams are ready to roll. In Los Angeles proper, the Boys in Blue have loaded up to make another deep postseason run, and in Orange County, the Los Angeles Angels (of Anaheim) have some of the game’s best young talent. If you’re eager to eat near Dodger Stadium, check out this article from Eater LA.
 
April 15, 2022

3 Ways First-Time Home Buyers Should Protect Their Investment

3 Ways First-Time Homebuyers Should Protect Their Investment
 
It’s no secret that the market is difficult for first-time buyers today. In addition, lack of information and inexperience with the home buying process can turn the dream of homeownership into a nightmare if consumers are not diligent. If you are planning to purchase a home for the first time, here are three important tips to help protect your investment so you can enjoy living “the dream.” 
  1. When you place a purchase offer, don’t do it lightly – When your real estate agent presents your purchase offer to the sellers, you are saying you are willing to enter into an agreement if the seller accepts your price, terms and conditions. Therefore, it’s important to consider how much you are willing to pay over the asking price if there are multiple bids, as there often are in a competitive real estate market with limited inventory. When you find your dream home, it’s tempting to make a high offer to ensure it will be accepted, but don’t let your emotions get the best of you. Stick to your pre-determined budget to avoid getting stuck with a mortgage payment you can’t afford. 
     
  2. Don’t skip a home inspection – Home inspections are not required when buying a house in California, but buying a house without an inspection can be risky because serious problems may exist with things like the electrical wiring, plumbing, roof, or foundation. Do your due diligence and hire a qualified home inspector once your purchase offer is accepted. Make sure the inspector can access every part of the home, from the roof to the crawl spaces. It’s also a good idea to attend the inspection, take notes, and ask questions. Some repairs may be negotiated with the seller, but you will want to review the final inspection report to decide if the house is worth the investment. 
     
  3. Don’t neglect to purchase title insurance – The purchase of a home is one of the most expensive and important you will ever make. You and the mortgage lender will want to make sure that no one else has liens, claims or encumbrances on the property. There are two types of title insurance policies: an “owner’s” policy, which protects you and your heirs from financial loss resulting from defects in the title of the property for as long as you own the home; and a “lender’s” policy, which insures the lender’s interests if claims against the home arise. Make sure you are protected with title insurance to avoid any possible legal actions against your property in the future.  
Source: Adapted from an article on forbes.com by Jordan Lulich

This material is not intended to be relied upon as a statement of the law, and is not to be construed as legal, tax or investment advice. You are encouraged to consult your legal, tax or investment professional for specific advice. The material is meant for general illustration and/or informational purposes only. Although the information has been gathered from sources believed to be reliable, no representation is made as to its accuracy. 
Posted in Real Estate
April 9, 2022

Property Tax Deadline Is Approaching!

Palos Verdes homes owners need to be aware that property tax deadlines are approaching. If your tax payment are impounded with your home loan, they should have been paid for you.  Everyone else must pay their property taxes normally by April 10th, but this year since it falls on a Sunday, the date has been extended until April 12, 2022.

This is just a friendly reminder that you only have until Tuesday, April 12, 2022, to get them paid without penalty.  According to the Tax Assessor, if paid after the second Property Tax installment deadline of April 12, there will be a 10% penalty plus a small charge added to your amount due.

Photo of the Garden Clock located at the Promenade on the Peninsula