Using an Online Lender When Buying a Home in Los Angeles

Don't use an online lender when buying a home in L.A.

If you are a first-time homebuyer and have started the process of buying a home in Los Angeles you may have been tempted to find a lender online. This would probably be because you have not yet talked to a Los Angeles Realtor® who would be advising you on the path to take. A huge part of the escrow process, in fact the major part, is acquiring the loan. It is difficult enough under normal circumstances without having to deal with someone across the country who is not familiar with the local … [Read more...]

Buying a Home in L.A. Can You Still Personalize the Process?

When buying a home in L.A. write a letter to the seller

You may think that the process of buying a home in Los Angeles is totally a matter of the highest price. Whoever offers the most is going to get the home. In many cases that is true, but there still remains an element of the personal in some transactions. There are still homeowners who are emotionally attached to the property. And there are still agents who actually consider the buyers who are making offers and their agents, to see with whom they are going to be able to work, and who … [Read more...]

Buying or Renting a Home in L.A. Don’t Shoot the Messenger

When buying a home in L.A. don't shoot the messenger

When buying a home in Los Angeles you hopefully will and should have your own buyer representation through a Los Angeles Realtor®.  And sometimes you will use a Realtor® when you are looking for a Los Angeles rental property. Remember that when you choose your agent they are working for you and no one else.  Their duty is to you the buyer or renter. They also do not call the shots, the seller or landlord does. So if you receive certain requests for information when writing a purchase … [Read more...]

Buying a Home in Los Angeles? What are the Different Statuses

Buying a home in Los Angeles. What are the different statuses

You are buying a home in Los Angeles and trying to stay on top of a fast-moving market. You see a home for sale and call your Los Angeles Realtor®.  By the time they check into it for you it is already shows a status of 'B" or maybe even "P". What does this mean? Assuming the agent is doing their job correctly, these are the various statuses: "A" for "Active". This is the status you should be concentrating on. If you see a status of "B" or "Waiting for Backup" the property has gone into … [Read more...]

5 Steps to Buying Your First Los Angeles Home

5 steps to buying your first home in Los Angeles

If you are a first time Los Angeles home buyer you are probably going to and have a ton of questions, including ones you never thought to ask. The process of buying a home can be an overwhelming for anyone, let alone for someone who has never bought before.  Hopefully following these steps will help alleviate some of the stress: Step 1: Get your finances in order.  If you have an accountant, or someone who can advise you, find out how much you are going to be comfortable paying each … [Read more...]

Need Help Finding a Los Angeles Home for Sale or Rent?

A Realtor® can save you time when buying a home in L.A.

If you need help finding a Los Angeles home for sale or rent, call a Los Angeles Realtor®. You are a busy person, right?  Do you think it is the best use of your time to scour the internet for homes of interest? Isn't it rather frustrating to try and get hold of someone to show you that property?  Have you ever left a message with no return call? Do you know the history of the property?  I could go on and on. Many Los Angeles home buyers and renters who contact me do so because they saw … [Read more...]

How to Compete with Cash Buyers When Buying a Home in Los Angeles

How to beat out cash offers when buying a home in L.A.

If you are buying a home in Los Angeles right now you will know that the market is crazy.  You make offer after offer only to be outbid by others, many of whom are paying all cash.  So how do you compete? Well, bottom line it will come down to the amount  and cleanliness of the offer, cash or not.  If two offers are similar enough and one is all cash, then the all cash offer is going to win out.  But, you can beat out the cash offer if yours is high enough or co ntingency- free enough. … [Read more...]

When Buying a Home in Los Angeles it Helps to Make a List

Buying a Los Angeles home? Make a list

You are buying a home in Los Angeles and have a vision of that property which is going to have everything you dreamed of.  Unfortunately, if you are buying a home in Los Angeles today, some of the features of that dream home are going to have to be set aside.  The competition right now is huge and if you are waiting to find the perfect home you are going to be left in the dust. After you have determined  with your lender your absolute top price, the best thing to do is make a list.  What do … [Read more...]

Buying a Los Angeles Home, How to Negotiate the Inspection Phase. Carefully

Buying a home in L.A. Handle the Inspection with care

Congratulations, you are the successful buyer of a Los Angeles home, leaving many other buyers disappointed.  With your Los Angeles Realtor® you negotiated your way to this stage.  Now comes more negotiation, equally as important as the Purchase. I am sure that a big part of you being the buyer of choice was the fact that your agent helped you write a clean offer which would have included a short inspection contingency period.  The standard period written in the contract is 17 days, but no … [Read more...]

Buying a Home in Los Angeles and Don’t Want to Overpay?

Buying a home in L.A. how do you avoid overpaying?

You are buying a home in Los Angeles and don't want to overpay?  Oh boy, where do I start. No one wants to feel like they are overpaying for anything let alone for as large an investment as a home. But here is the reality of today's market.  If you love the home and you want it, you are going to have to go all out to get it. So, when we are representing Los Angeles home buyers how do we make sure that they are not "overpaying".  We do the same thing as the listing agents try to do when … [Read more...]

Homes for Sale in Los Angeles With Pools

Los Angeles homes for sale with a pool

Not that it matters in Los Angeles, with great weather all year round, but summer is here and wouldn't it be nice to take a dip in the pool after a hard day's work or over the weekend.  Think of all the pool parties you can have, and July 4th is around the corner. There are many condo buildings which have pools among their amenities, especially on the Wilshire Corridor.  But if you are looking for a single family home with a pool then you will need to dig a little further. You can, of … [Read more...]

Los Angeles Homes for Sale by Walk Score

Los Angeles walk scores

We all know nobody walks in L.A. right!  But sometimes you just don't want to get in your car and drive. Within a Los Angeles zip code, walk scores can vary tremendously so you should check out each listing to see whether it is in an area that meets your needs.  Our Multiple Listing Service (MLS) includes the walk score for each listing but you can also visit the Walk Score site to input your parameters.  Anything over 70 means you can accomplish most tasks by foot. Within the Los Angeles … [Read more...]

Buying a Home in Los Angeles is Not For Shrinking Violets

Buying a home in Los Angeles. Be agressive

We've all heard the news, Los Angeles is a sellers' market.  So what does that mean if you are buying a home in Los Angeles?  Well, you may need to look for your inner Hulk, because it is not pretty out there. Case in point: A home recently listed in the Westwood area for $829,000 sold in 13 days for $914,000.  Another listed for $1.995M sold for $2.082M in 22 days.  And one listed for $3.495M sold for $3.860M, 10% over asking. The average of 15 out of the 21 homes sold in Westwood … [Read more...]

Los Angeles Home Buyer Frequently Asked Questions. What is Title Insurance?

What is title insurance

When buying a home in Los Angeles you will be faced with the term "Title Insurance".  So what is title insurance? Title insurance protects against any kind of problems affecting the title to a piece of property.  Some of those problems could be: Questions about the legal ownership of the property Any errors in the public records that were not found before the sale Liens against the property Problems with wills and trusts affecting the property Fraudulent documents affecting the … [Read more...]

Los Angeles Home Buyers FAQ. Understanding the Purchase Contract

Understanding the Los Angeles real estate purchase contract

When buying a Los Angeles home it helps if you understand the Residential Purchase Agreement (RPA) which is what will be filled out when making an offer.  The majority of the contract is standard and pretty much self-explanatory, but there are areas that need to be filled out that can cause some confusion. Below is an explanation of the Purchase Agreement you will be filling out once you have decided on a property. It will help you understand some of the terms of the contract. 1.  This is … [Read more...]

Home Buyers Frequently Asked Questions. How to Read an MLS Listing

Understanding MLS terminology when buying a Los Angeles home

Buying a home in Los Angeles can be a daunting task.  Where do you start?  Well, ideally you should use the services of a Los Angeles real estate agent, but often buyers like to look for listings themselves. Most of the listings you will see online derive from the Multiple Listing Service (MLS) the bible of the real estate industry.  The layout will look different on different sites, but this should help explain some of the general terminology: LP - list price Status - this will show … [Read more...]

Buying a Home in Los Angeles. What’s the Difference Between an Inspection and an Appraisal?

What;s the difference between an inspection and an appraisal

Georgina Hunter, a Maui real estate agent provides a great explanation of the difference between a home inspection and an appraisal. You're buying a home and things are going great.  You found a nice house you love and negotiations led to an accepted offer, congratulations!  Things are moving fast and this is the time to pay close attention.  Your agent has provided you with names of home inspectors and you need to get that scheduled ASAP.  There's a lot you might not understand, so be sure … [Read more...]

Why Not to Use the Listing Agent When Buying a Home. A Perfect Example

Why you should not use the listing agent when buying a Los Angeles home

I recently wrote a post, You Have Had your Home Inspection, What's Next?.  As a result I got a call yesterday from a very nice gentleman who wanted my advice on his situation. He is in escrow on a home and had paid $5,000 over the asking price.  The inspection showed some problems that were going to cost around $2,000 to fix.  He had submitted a request for repair, and the seller countered back that they would pay half.  He was asking me what I thought. I asked him what his agent was … [Read more...]

Getting Married Establish a Lifetime of Good and Sound Financial Habits

Getting married? Here are some good financial habits to plan togehter

Gene Mundt was asked to participate in a recent Bridal Show and Expo in Joliet, IL.  Below is the advise he put together to share: My suggestion to newlywed couples is ... let the excitement of your wedding day die down a bit.  Take some time to relax and just bond.  Then have a few serious talks together.  Ones where you each take the opportunity to communicate your future financial goals and dreams to the other. During your talks, tackle the following tips and suggestions one by one and … [Read more...]

What Happens When a Los Angeles Home is Listed for Sale AND Rent?

What happens when a home is listed for sale AND rent?

When looking for a Los Angeles home to buy or rent you may find something on the market that is listed in both categories.  What does this mean? In the days when it was a buyers' market then probably the owner needed out for one reason or another and was not sure he or she would be able to sell the home.  So they put it on the market for sale. Now, with low inventory that would probably not be the reason.  It could be that the owner wants a certain price and if they don't get it they will … [Read more...]