Nick's Blog

Weekly Real Estate Update

Posted: July 21, 2015

California: Home to Most of the Country's Priciest ZIP Codes

Seventy percent of the most expensive U.S. communities in which to purchase a home are located in the Golden State, with Silicon Valley of course well represented. Read all about it at http://bit.ly/1I5LkrZ

Stanford, UC Berkeley Rank Among the Nation's 10 Best Colleges

Money magazine ranked hundreds of colleges for overall excellence and value, and two Bay Area powerhouses were among the top 10 – with Stanford University taking the No. 1 spot. Get the full story at http://bit.ly/1HMLjmh

Bay Area Rental-Property Return Rates Lower Than National Average

Even with the Bay Area's astronomical rental costs, expensive home prices mean that buyers who purchase an investment property they plan to rent will see smaller returns than those in the rest of the country. Details are at http://bit.ly/1L65GBS

First-Time Buyers' Toughest Hurdle: The Down Payment

In a recent survey of would-be homebuyers, nearly two-thirds said that they would like to provide a sizable down payment of 20 percent or more, but most were unable to do so. In fact, needing to save money for a down payment was the biggest deterrent to buying a home. Read more at http://bit.ly/1Hzh2KH

Real Estate Roundup: U.S Foreclosures Drop to Decade Low

Recent news of interest to homebuyers, home sellers, and the home-curious: U.S. and California foreclosure starts have reached precession lows, Google's stock price has climbed to a record high, and mega-basements are all the rage in Silicon Valley. Get all the week’s top news at http://bit.ly/1DqmWd6

Weekly Real Estate Update

Posted: July 13, 2015

A College Degree Is Nearly Essential to Buy a Home in Coastal California

If you're a millennial and hope to someday own a home in the Golden State, you'd better make sure that you have a college degree under your belt, a recent study found. Read all about it at http://bit.ly/1NRfUnn

Nearly One-Half of California Homeowners Removing Lawns in Response to Drought

Homeowners in the drought-stricken state are nearly three times as likely to remove their lawn during an outdoor home-improvement job, say results from a survey that examines landscaping and gardening trends. For more information, go to http://bit.ly/1J2oEU1

Update Your Home-Security Plans, Then Enjoy Your Vacation

Going away for an extended trip? Here are 10 common-sense tips to make sure your home is safe and secure while you're away. Now relax and have fun! http://bit.ly/1RoqN6m

East Bay City of El Cerrito Offers Convenient Commute, Views, and Affordability

East Bay home shoppers in search of a favorable location and relatively affordable real estate when compared with neighboring communities should put El Cerrito on their list of places to explore, though buyers should still expect to pay a premium to close a successful purchase. Read our community profile at http://bit.ly/1RkB5o7

Real Estate Roundup: Second Bay Area County Breaks Property-Value Record

Recent news of interest to homebuyers, home sellers, and the home-curious includes a report that property values in San Mateo County have reached a new peak. Also, second-quarter rental rates in San Jose were up 7.2 percent from a year earlier, while San Francisco rents rose 6.8 percent. Get all the week’s top news at http://bit.ly/1dWg3JZ

Weekly Real Estate Update

Posted: July 6, 2015

25 Pacific Union Professionals Rank Among Nation's Best for Sales

Pacific Union is honored and pleased to share the news that 25 of our real estate professionals have been ranked among the top 250 in the U.S. We'd like to congratulate them on their outstanding achievements and thank our entire team of Northern California real estate professionals, who recently propelled our company into the top 10 in the country based on 2014 sales volume. Read more at http://bit.ly/1GMp1Bv

Golden State Real Estate Markets Stay Sizzling in June

Demand for homes in California showed no sign of cooling as summer officially began, with three Bay Area cities named among the nation's five most booming real estate markets. Get the story at http://bit.ly/1HuGrGB

>b>Bay Area Housing Markets Highly Unaffordable for Low-Down-Payment Buyers

Although nine out of 10 U.S. homes are more affordable than their historic averages for buyers using low-down-payment programs, that's not the case here in the Bay Area, according to a recent report. It’s online at http://bit.ly/1UcIm8h

How Much Is That President's Home Today?

Teddy Roosevelt's 23-room home in Oyster Bay, N.Y., cost $16,975 to build back in the 1880s. Today, it would sell for a bit more: an estimated $3,195,000, not counting its historical significance. Here's a look at six presidential homes and how much they would be worth if they hit the market today: http://bit.ly/1NDeM7g

Real Estate Roundup: Bay Area Buyers Willing to Pay Large Premiums for the Right Neighborhood

Recent news of interest to homebuyers, home sellers, and the home-curious includes a report that most Bay Area residents are willing to pay nearly 25 percent extra to live in the best neighborhoods. Also, the five least affordable real estate markets for millennial buyers are all located in California, with the Bay Area well represented. Get all the week’s top news at http://bit.ly/1KGNtuo

Weekly Real Estate Update

Posted: June 30, 2015

California Ranks Fifth in the U.S. for Annual Job Growth in May

Although unemployment claims inched up in California and across most of the Bay Area from April to May, the Golden State ranks among the top five in the country for year-over-year job growth. And here in the Bay Area, employment levels are further above their prerecession peaks than anywhere else in the state. Read more at http://bit.ly/1HbQ6C0

First-Time Buyers Help Boost U.S. Home Sales in May

Thanks in part to a healthy job market, first-time buyer activity is on the upswing and helped propel U.S. existing home sales to the highest level in five-and-a-half years last month. For details, go to http://bit.ly/1QRQr34

Gay, Lesbian Neighborhoods Lead Home Price Increases

Home prices are higher and grow faster in neighborhoods with large concentrations of gay and lesbian couples, according to a recent report. Check it out: http://bit.ly/1eMhf3V

Petaluma's D Street Neighborhood Brims With History and Charm

Perhaps best locally known for its concentration of handsome and historic homes, Petaluma's D Street neighborhood also earns points with Sonoma County homebuyers for its excellent schools and proximity to the city's thriving downtown. Read our neighborhood profile at http://bit.ly/1J5pfH5

Real Estate Roundup: East Bay Community Named California's Wealthiest

Recent news of interest to homebuyers, home sellers, and the home-curious includes a report that California's wealthiest homeowners hail from a small Alameda County city. Also, affluent homeowners from around the country are spending major money to convert historic barns into extravagant entertaining venues. Get all the week’s top news at http://bit.ly/1Lyd8F3

Weekly Real Estate Update

Posted: June 24, 2015

Bay Area Home Sales, Price Growth Lead Golden State

The California Association of Realtors reports that the Bay Area was the only region in California where homes sold at a premium in May, with final sales prices an average of 7.3 percent above asking prices. For details, go to http://bit.ly/1JRW25q

San Francisco, San Jose Cited for 'Major Job-Creation Mojo'

San Francisco and San Jose placed second and third, respectively, on a list of the nation's top 10 housing markets where job growth is powering home price increases. Get the full story at http://bit.ly/1Tual2X

Chinese Now Account for Largest Share of U.S. International Property Buyers

Buyers from China have been steadily increasing in ranks over the past five years, leading the country to overtake Canada as the largest foreign investor in U.S. real estate. Here in the Golden State, more than half of international sales involve a buyer from Asia. For more information, go to http://bit.ly/1eqDkEX

Survey: California Homebuyers Say Neighborhood Safety Is Top Concern, Followed by Walkability, Schools,/b>

A survey from the California Association of Realtors also found that 85 percent of buyers believe their home is worth the price they paid for it. And buyers reported significantly fewer troubles obtaining a home loan. Get more survey results at http://bit.ly/1ITg0tx

Real Estate Roundup: Silicon Valley ZIP Code Posts Country's Largest Housing-Wealth Gain

Recent news of interest to homebuyers, home sellers, and the home-curious includes a report that homeowners in one Palo Alto ZIP code have enjoyed housing-wealth gains in excess of $100,000. Also, one company's data says that median home prices have reached new highs in Santa Clara and Alameda counties. Get all the week’s top news at http://bit.ly/1N0XVKU

Weekly Real Estate Update

Posted: June 16, 2015

Pacific Union’s May 2015 Real Estate Update

Available homes across the Bay Area were even harder to come by this May than they were last spring, with the months' supply of inventory (MSI) dropping from one year ago in all of Pacific Union's regions except Lake Tahoe/Truckee. Meanwhile, the median sales price reached yearly highs in four of our Bay Area regions. Get all the latest figures in Pacific Union's May 2015 Real Estate Update: http://bit.ly/1JGKwYZ

Real Estate Executives Forecast More Growth in 2016

New home sales and prices should rise in the coming year, say recent projections from housing industry executives, while the chance of a downturn over the next three years appears less likely than it did one year ago. For details, go to http://bit.ly/1f53BIQ

Survey: Delays to Closings Are Few and Far Between

A recent survey by the National Association of Realtors found that 90 percent of all sales contracts closed successfully. Read more at http://bit.ly/1GC6yNu

There's More Than Just World-Class Golf in Lake Tahoe's High-End Lahontan

While golf might be the main game for many homeowners in Lake Tahoe's Lahontan, residents of the prestigious private community enjoy an abundance of other family-friendly activities all year long. Check out our community profile at http://bit.ly/1B2nkDb

Real Estate Roundup: 30-Year Mortgage Tops 4%

Recent news of interest to homebuyers, home sellers, and the home-curious includes a report from Freddie Mac that mortgage rates reached new highs for 2015. The U.S real estate market, meanwhile, is on track for its best year since 2006. Get all the week’s top news at http://bit.ly/1C8VD6L

Weekly Real Estate Update

Posted: June 8, 2015

Bay Area Is the Nation's Hottest Market for Home Sellers

As has been the case for the past few years, Bay Area home sellers remain firmly in the driver's seat, with four of our local counties ranking among the top 10 in the nation for largest premiums this spring. Get the full story at http://bit.ly/1ESBNw4

California Dominates List of Most Thriving U.S. Housing Markets

Demand for Golden State real estate remained strong in May, with California metro areas accounting for half of what Realtor.com deems the country's hottest markets. Read all about it at http://bit.ly/1H4xnbA

Bay Area Employees Remain the Nation's Happiest

Workers in the Bay Area's largest two cities rank as the most satisfied in the U.S. for the third consecutive year, a key intangible that should continue to draw highly skilled, highly paid employees to the region and fuel demand for real estate. For more, go to http://bit.ly/1IcTIT0

Installing a Pool, Watering the Lawn Become Debate Topics During California's Lengthening Drought

Is water conservation in drought-stricken California best served by installing a swimming pool or by watering your lawn? Or maybe by something else entirely? Read more at http://bit.ly/1eTnwdG

Real Estate Roundup: U.S. Average Down Payment Declining Thanks to First-Time Buyers

Recent news of interest to homebuyers, home sellers, and the home-curious includes a report that while the average U.S. down payment declined in the first quarter, Santa Clara County homebuyers were putting down some of the largest in the nation. Also, you might not believe how high the median rent in San Francisco has climbed. Get all the week’s top news at http://bit.ly/1FEBGWI

Weekly Real Estate Update

Posted: June 1, 2015

Mortgage Availability Improves for Sixth Straight Month

The Mortgage Bankers Association says that relaxed government regulations, new offerings from federal loan programs, and new jumbo-loan options helped improve access to home loans in April, the sixth straight month of increased availability. Get the full story at http://bit.ly/1FRNGYs

Bay Area Unemployment Claims Keep Dropping in April

Jobless claims dropped from the previous month in all nine Bay Area counties in April, while the Golden State's unemployment rate reached its lowest level in seven years. And job growth is projected to remain strong throughout the remainder of the year, particularly in the San Francisco and San Jose metro areas. Read more at http://bit.ly/1BpbzkE

Home Prices Are Rising in Scenic, Seaside Bodega Bay

Not far from Sonoma County's two largest cities but a world apart from the bustle of the Bay Area, the laid-back coastal community of Bodega Bay is steeped in the natural beauty that has long drawn people to Northern California – one reason that home prices have seen sizable gains over the past two years. Check out our community profile at http://bit.ly/1Aw5wQC

Real Estate Roundup: San Francisco Luxury Condo Buyers Are the West's Most Educated

Recent news of interest to homebuyers, home sellers, and the home-curious includes a report that nearly two-thirds of luxury condominium owners in San Francisco hold advanced degrees. Also, Bay Area renters who are considering buying a home might be surprised to learn how much money they can saving by acting while interest rates are low. Get all the week’s top news at http://bit.ly/1GROvkM

Weekly Real Estate Update

Posted: May 26, 2015

Buying a Home in the Bay Area Is Still Cheaper Than Renting

Home prices grew slightly faster than rents across the country over the past year, but purchasing a property remains the less-expensive option, thanks in part to low mortgage rates. That's true even here in the Bay Area, which lays claim to the highest home prices in the nation. Read more at http://bit.ly/1AlT4T5

California Median Home Price Reaches Highest Level Since 2007

The median Golden State home price hit its highest point in more than seven years in April, while sales volume rose for the third consecutive month. The Bay Area also enjoyed healthy home sales gains in April, with volume rising by more than 20 percent from the previous month. Get the full story at http://bit.ly/1IJioWa

San Francisco Metro Area Mortgage-Delinquency Rate Is Lowest in U.S.

The U.S. mortgage-delinquency rate has dropped to its lowest level in nearly eight years, with the San Francisco metro area leading the charge. Details are at http://bit.ly/1AhzcRv

Looking for Pet-Friendly Rentals? No Region Has More Than the Bay Area.

San Francisco and Oakland rate among the top cities in the U.S. for pet-friendly landlords, least expensive pet fees, and access to pet stores and services, according to a recent study. Get the full story at http://bit.ly/1F5Wu9t

Real Estate Roundup: San Francisco Is World's Fastest-Appreciating Luxury Market

Recent news of interest to homebuyers, home sellers, and the home-curious includes a report that San Francisco posted the largest annual home price gains of any major luxury market in the world. Also, distressed home sales were in the single-digit range in all nine Bay Area counties in April. Get all the week’s top news at http://bit.ly/1EvbyM2

Guatemala House Build 2011 - Home For A Home

Posted: February 16, 2012

A look at the 'Home For A Home' 2011 house build trip in Guatemala!

For more info on 'Home For A Home' visit http://www.homeforahome.org