A Quote that may make you buy a home in the next year

“Given the appreciation of the dollar and the deflationary pressure coming out of Europe and Asia, I think it’s going to cause the Fed to wait longer before they start taking action,” he said. “We’ve always believed this was going to be a fourth quarter 2015 event. I think we may be looking at something in 2016, and you can’t rule out the possibility that we could get pushed out even father.”

Noone knows that the future will bring but all looks hopeful and you will never lose if you stay in Real Estateinterest rates dropping

New Social Security changes for 2015

SS card“Social Security recipients will receive 1.7 percent bigger checks in 2015, the Social Security Administration announced last week. And some groups of workers will begin receiving benefit statements in the mail with a list of taxes paid and an estimate of their future retirement benefit. Here’s a look at the new Social Security benefits, taxes and services workers and retirees will experience in 2015:

Bigger payments. The 1.7 percent cost-of-living adjustment is expected to result in the typical retiree getting about $22 more per month. This change will increase the average monthly benefit for retired workers in January 2015 from $1,306 before the cost-of-living adjustment to $1,328 after. The average benefit for retired couples who are both receiving benefits is projected to increase by $36 to $2,176 per month.

Social Security payments are automatically adjusted each year to keep up with inflation as measured by the Consumer Price Index for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers. Previous cost-of-living adjustments have ranged from zero in 2010 and 2011 to 14.3 percent in 1980. The 1.7 percent increase retirees will receive in January is similar to the 1.5 percent adjustment for 2014 and 1.7 percent increase in 2013.

Higher tax cap. Most workers pay 6.2 percent of every paycheck into the Social Security system until their earnings exceed the tax cap. The maximum taxable earnings will increase next year from $117,000 in 2014 to $118,500 in 2015. About 10 million of the 168 million workers who pay into Social Security are expected to face higher taxes as a result of this change. People who earn more than the taxable maximum do not pay Social Security taxes on that amount or have those earnings factored into their future Social Security payments.

Larger earnings limits. Social Security beneficiaries who are under age 66 can earn as much as $15,720 in 2015, before $1 in benefits will be withheld for every $2 earned above the limit. Retirees who will turn 66 in 2015 and have signed up for Social Security can earn up to $41,880 before every $3 earned above the limit will result in one benefit dollar being withheld. However, once a retiree turns age 66 there is no limit on earnings and Social Security payments are recalculated to give the retiree credit for the withheld benefits.

Your statement might be in the mail. If you will turn age 25, 30, 35, 40, 45, 50, 55 or 60 next year and don’t have a Social Security online account, you can expect to receive a paper Social Security statement that lists your earnings history, taxes paid and expected benefit about 3 months before your birthday. And after age 60 workers will receive a statement annually. The SSA expects to send nearly 48 million Social Security statements each year. These mailings, which were sent annually to all workers age 25 and older between 1999 and 2011, were suspended in April 2011 to save money. Statements are also available online at any time via socialsecurity.gov/myaccount, and 14 million people have created personalized accounts using this service.

The maximum benefit increases. The maximum possible Social Security payment for a worker who signs up at full retirement age will be $2,663 per month in 2015, up $21 from $2,642 in 2014”

Know your benefits and plan ahead and if you are in your 20’s and 30’s start an IRA or join 401K, don’t plan on SSA being there

The Scales have tipped to a buyer’s market

scale
The scales have tipped to a buyer’s market

With houses staying on the market in Orange County an average of 10 days longer in July 2014 than in July 2013, more housing inventory to choose from, and an increase in the number of sellers dropping prices, buyers should assume that every house has a motivated seller behind it.
If you’re in the market for a new home, here are some ways to leverage the buyer’s market to your advantage:

Don’t be shy
Ask the seller to pay the first year of HOA fees, ask that the carpet or wood floors be replaced or professionally cleaned, ask for the landscaping to be updated… even ask for the luxurious pieces of furniture you’d like to have. The WORST they can say is no. You might end up getting more than you thought possible. Simply TRY asking for it since many sellers are ready to negotiate in order to get under contract.

Name your price
When you see the sales comps of surrounding homes, don’t be afraid to throw out an offer that’s below the average. Now, don’t have the false hope actually getting the home at this price. Instead, use your low offer as a tool to gauge the seller’s motivation. Again…the worst they can say is no.

Partner with your loan officer
If you’re going to be taken seriously by the seller, you need to have your ducks in a row before even looking at the home. With mortgage rates at one-year lows, it’s a GREAT time to buy. Especially when you can maximize the benefits of a buyer’s market.

Start by working with your loan officer to determine how much home you can afford and what types of loan programs are best for you. Then make sure you have your letter of pre-approval in hand. A seller is much more likely to lend an open mind to negotiations and requests from a well-prepared, serious buyer than one who is not.

Contact us and we will introduce you to a great lender
MarleneDietrich@Realtor.com www/.MarleneDietrichRealEstate.com

Homes Sales up due to Job Market & RE Inventory

housing inventory

 

Home Sales up due to Job Market and RE inventory

According to the  Association of REALTORS®   Sales of homes have risen for the 4th month in a row. Smaller price increases, lower interest rates and rising apartment rents.

The Job Market has gotten better, and even though there have been claims of housing affordability declining, Homes used to sell for $325,000 at 10% and you can still get the same home for about $650,000 to $700,000 at 4.125% so where is the loss of affordability.

There are loans available for 5% down conventional, and if you are moving or moving up in the next 5,7 or 10 years you can bet an even better interest rate. Some buyers want to pay off they home in 7-10 years so they use this to keep their interest rates down and pay the Principal off much quicker to become debt free, which is what Dave Ramsey Preaches.

Distressed homes have dropped from 15-9% which is a big fall from October 2008s tracking. In 2009 35% of all sales were distressed home sales and now it is down to 9%. We are moving in the right direction.

Homes here is the West have risen 2.6% with a 6.3% medium price increase. Don’t forget we are talking about the West, Orange County is much better.

For a knowledgeable agent who will get the job done, contact

MarleneDietrich@Realtor.com 949-400-3099 www.MarleneDietrichRealEstate.com

3 Reasons to Buy in Orange County Now

Hispanic family outside home with sold sign

 

3 reasons for buying homes now.

 

There are 3 reasons todays buyers are moving to purchasing a home.

  1. Real Estate ownership is considered a great long term investment for their future
  2. They are tired of throwing away money on rent
  3. It is the right time to buy.

About 33% of all home purchases last year have been made by single buyers according to the, National Association of REALTORS® and of those 75% of those are between the ages of  25 and 50.

Single Females desire Proximity to Family and Safety, and for Baby Boomer singles it is a symbol of success and roots. They want low maintainence and home entertaining even dual masters for nonromantic roommates.

The choices of homes for consideration were largely square footage & yards with proximity taking a close 3rd in importance.

Home ownership is a major life decision. Even though many were intimidate by the process of the home search, negotiating, obtaining a mortgage, buying and closing escrow they knew it was the right thing and the right time.

Many also said they dined out & entertained less often and most spent less on vacations but felt it was well worth it to achieve Home ownership at this time.

Whatever you do the most important thing to do is start with a good agent and a good lender

Contact us anytime 949-400-1021 MarleneDietrich@Realtor.com www.MarleneDietrichRealEstate.com

 

Retail Sales in Orange County

“Like sluggish waters through a marsh…” The poet Sir Walter Scott wasn’t talking about the latest Retail Sales numbers, but his words paint a pretty vivid picture…and a pretty accurate one regarding this report.

Retail Sales were unchanged in July, kicking off the third quarter on a down note as consumer spending slows. The reading was the slowest rate in six months, and was dragged down by lower sales in virtually all areas of the economy, including motor vehicles and parts sales, department stores, furniture and home furnishing stores, and electronic and appliance stores. This was a bad report and not indicative of an economy growing at a 4 percent annual rate, as suggested by the recent first reading of second quarter Gross Domestic Product. It will be important to monitor reports like GDP and Retail Sales in the coming months, to see if our economy shows signs of improvement…or of slowing down.

In housing news, RealtyTrac reported that foreclosure activity across the nation rose for the first time in four months, up 2 percent from June to July as lenders scheduled more properties for auction. However, foreclosure activity is still down 16 percent from last year, and July marked the forty-sixth straight month in which activity declined on an annual basis. Overall, this area of the housing market continues to move in the right direction.

And there were two other bits of Bond-friendly news that helped keep home loan rates near some of their best levels of the year. Here at home, inflation at the wholesale level remains tame, as evidenced by the Producer Price Index. Remember that inflation is the arch enemy of Bonds—and therefore, of home loan rates, which are tied to Mortgage Bonds—as inflation reduces the value of fixed investments like Bonds. And overseas, news that debt problems in Europe continue to wreak havoc in the region prompted investors into the safe haven of our Bond markets.

The bottom line is that home loan rates remain near some of their best levels of the year and now is a great time to consider a home purchase or refinance.

Alternative sources for your Down Payment

home on money

Alternative sources for your down payment

Savings are not the only way to fund a down payment. In these difficult times, it is hard to keep up will bills much less save for a down payment faster than homes are going up!

If you make a good living, have good credit but do not have the savings to put down on a home, there are still a variety of sources available to you for your down payment.

1. Mom & Dad

Some banks allow gift money either seasoned ( which means in your bank account for at least 2 monthly statements  or Without seasoning, some lenders will allow the gift with a letter statin g the money is a gift and is not a loan.

This cannot be a loan because then even though it is legal to borrow the down payment, it makes it difficult to qualify for the primary loan.  The DTI (Debt to Income) Ratio limits you to what they will loan based on your Income and debt and then they will include the down payment  INCOME and DEBT of the down payment. The DTI is usually 40% but can go as high as 48%.

2. Down Payment Assistance Programs

           There are Interest free loans, grants (no payback), low down with No-PM. But you don’t have to be a low income to qualify…. For Example. in Orange County, California, a buyer could earn up to $98,000 and still qualify for a grant of up to five percent of the sale price of the home. These grants average from $5,000 to $10,000 and must be used toward the down payment of a single-family residence. You need at least a 640 FICO score, you must put any savings you have in as down payment, before they will help. Some cities have their own assistance programs.

3. Retirement Accounts

You can always borrow, Not take from, your 401K or your IRA for your down payment. You will get your down payment that you need and borrowing is OK and you are paying yourself back for your retirement days.  However, there are some conditions. First, consumers should understand that they are not withdrawing the money. That would be a horrible mistake for many reasons, including the huge penalties and taxes you’d pay for early withdrawal. Always talk to your Tax advisor for the last word on how you would be affected.

The key is to weigh all the risks and rewards and making sure the move you make is right for you.

We work with lots of great lenders so contact us for all of your Real Estate Needs. Call or text at 949-400-3000  Email at MarleneDietrich@Realtor.com  www.MarleneDietrichRealEstate.com

THIS WEEK’S INTEREST RATES

Loan Product
and Term
Interest
Rate
Annual
Percentage Rate
Sample Payment
for $417,000
Conforming
5/1 ARM
3.625%
3.738%
$1901.73
Conforming
10 Year Fixed

3.250%

3.543%
$4074.88
Conforming
15 Year Fixed
3.375%

3.577%
$2955.53
Conforming
20 Year Fixed
4.000%

4.160%
$2526.94
Conforming
30 Year Fixed
4.125%

4.241%
$2020.99
FHA & VA
15 Year Fixed
3.250%

3.452%
$2930.13
FHA & VA
30 Year Fixed
3.750%

3.864%
$1931.19

HOUSING HEADED UP NEXT YEAR IN ORANGE COUNTY

Inventory in OC California up 70%
Inventory in OC California up 70%

Housing Headed up next year in Orange County

 

According to Altos Research which is a housing data provider, they are expecting a housing market SURGE in 2015. They are expecting the supply to go up 10% and prices up 7% because of the low number of days on the market for current homes for sale.

Other experts say things will slow based on worries in Today’s news but Altos says they are basing their expectation on actual documentations, and are expecting a 5th year of recovery.

Both supply and demand will move this housing economy upward.

We all know that Real Estate is the best long term investment you can make so whether it is going to be another great year next year or not, RATES are low now! PRICES will go up! As will RATES so NOW is a GREAT time to buy.

Contact us today 949-400-3099  MarleneDietrich@Realtor.com  www.MarleneDietrichRealEstate.com

Orange County First Time Home Buyers

first time home buyers

 

First-Time Home Buyers Make 5 Mistakes

First-timers on anything can be so eager that they will jump into things head first. What we see in Real Estate seems to happen over and over with First time home buyers.

  • They’re unpreparedBuyers believe that they know what they can afford and all they have to do is write an offer on the first good home they see. 
  1. They should actually first speak with a lender so that KNOW what they can afford, what they need for a deposit, what their payments would be and get a required letter of PreApproval from that lender to be fully prepared when they find that WOW home.
  2. Choose a knowledgeable Real Estate agent, with experience, and one that is looking out for you not just a paycheck!
  • Their priorities are not in order.Buyers will often go out and buy a car without weight the facts that a lender will also weight in that INCOME to DEBT RATIO is very important and if they buy a car, even though they can afford the payments, that will increase the DEBT and will decrease their chance of getting the size of the loan they need for the home they want.
  • Everything is on line nowOnline sites are great for information but it is important that you meet face to face to get rid of the Mystic idea of the process. Same goes with a real estate agent. They can answer all your questions. You may not understand.

 

    1. A face to face with all of your agents will help you understand, get what YOU want and make this process a more enjoyable and financially sound event. This is a very IMPORTANT event in your lives, it may be the single largest purchase you will make

            They bank too much on online home values. Some websites will give an incorrect sense of Real  Estate value. If the buyer sees online that the online service values a home at $900,000 and the REAL market value is $1 million then they will be approaching the buying of this home in such a way as they could lose their dream home and a great long term investment.

  1. The buyers should experience seeing homes with their Real Estate agent to get an idea of the difference in value based on LOCATION (ie if the home sits inside the community or backs to a street), VIEW (backing to a street is not necessarily bad if you have a view, or even a larger lot that you want), UPGRADES and condition ( since those can be added later if the FLOORPLAN is exactly what you are looking for)
  • Buyers sometimes do not have a home inspection. Buyers wanting to save $4-500 to not have the inspection, could be saving the pennies that would have saved them 10 times that. Neither the buyer or the Real Estate agent are electricians, plumbers or construction experts and the inspection could bring to the buyers attention expensive repairs needed in the home. This would, since todays homes are sold in AS IS condition, give you an opportunity to get a credit back for these unknown factors, OR give you an opportunity to cancel the escrow and save you lots more money.
  • Always use a professional. Always call Marlene Dietrich at 949-400-3099 Or Email at MarleneDietrich@Realtor.com visit us at  http://www.MarleneDietrichRealEstate.com