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San Marino Real Estate Market Report – May 2008 to July 2008

San Marino Real Estate Market Report – May 2008 to July 2008

San Marino’s real estate activity has been holding steady in the month of August. We actuallly saw an increase in the number of San Marino homes that opened escrow, from 8 in June to 13 in July.

The number of homes on the market in July remained at 41 with 14 new San Marino listings coming on the market.

Looking at the 12 San Marino homes that actually closed escrow in July, the sales price to listing price ratio is pretty close – 98.23% – meaning that most homes sold close to asking price. Interestingly enough, we’re still seeing multiple offers in San Marino. Three of the 12 homes sold OVER asking:

Address Asking Price Selling Price $/Sq.Ft. % of Sold/Asking
1755 Sharon Place $950,876 $1,028,000 $671.46 108.1%
2270 Huntley Circle $1,050,000 $1,100,000 $541.61 104.8%
1522 Wembley Road $1,598,000 $1,668,000 $725.85 104.4%
1740 Hilliard*1846 Lorain Road* $1,050,000$1,950,000 $1,050,000$1,950,000 $496.45$596.70 100%100%

Both 1740 Hilliard and 1846 Lorain Road were sold after a price adjustment and being on the mrket for several months. Once the prices were adjusted, both homes pretty quickly at full asking price. A lot to be said for correctly pricing your home.

May 2008 to July 2008 San Marino Housing Statistics:

Single Family Residence May-08 Jun-08 Jul-08
New Listings 14 13 14
Total Listings 39 41 41
Sales Pending 15 8 13
Homes Sold 10 15 12
Listings Expired 4 4 4
Average Days on the Market 40 77 60
Average Price Per Sq. Ft.   $552 $601
Average Selling Price $1,807,900 $1,638,045 $1,461,150
Absorption Rate (# of weeks to sell current inventory at present rate of sales)   17.8 11.8

Data taken from ITEC (Pasadena Foothills Association MLS service)

READ MORE: San Marino Real Estate Market Housing Report for August 2008

If you are interested in beginning your search for a San Marino home, please click on the search home link here.

For weekly updates on San Marino real estate market activity, please feel free to request market analysis reports with detailed information by clicking on the Real Estate Market Reports here. These reports are gathered and updated by Altos Research and will be emailed to you with my compliments.

Posted by Irina Netchaev 626-627-7107


Posted on August 15th, 2008
Posted by: Irina Netchaev

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Pasadena Mortgage Rates Report: August 15, 2008

Pasadena Mortgage Rates Report: August 15, 2008

Pasadena Mortgage rates were stable this week. ARM rates went up and the fixed rate mortgage rates are the same as they were Monday. I mentioned that traders felt “stuck in the middle” of conflicting data. Core inflation is rising but oil prices are falling like a rock off a cliff. I’m as confused as the mortgage bond traders so I’m taking this opportunity to lock rates for loans closing within 30 days.


READ: Why Oil Prices Will Drop BELOW $100/ Barrel in 2009

Why? I think the rising ARM rates suggest that traders believe, in their hearts, that the Fed will tighten before Thanksgiving. I’m more about mitigating risk rather than pouncing on opportunity so when I’m confused, I lock mortgage rates. Maybe the descent in oil prices will continue and mortgage rates decline further but “I ain’t seeing it” from my ivory tower.


Pasadena Mortgage rates for August 15, 2008. Loan amounts up to $417,000:


3/1 ARM 5.750%

5/1 ARM 5.750%

7/1 ARM 6.000%

10/1 ARM 6.250%

30 Yr Fixed 6.375%


All rates offered to the borrower with 1 point cost. Rate quotes assume a purchase transaction with a 20% down payment, 720 credit score, and full income qualification. Rates are subject to fluctuation. Custom rate quotes and rate lock advice are available by calling (858)-777-9751.



Next 7 days: Neutral

Next 30 days: Neutral

Next 3 months: Neutral


Originally posted on

Posted on August 15th, 2008
Posted by: Irina Netchaev

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Federal Tax Breaks to Owning Real Estate

Federal Tax Breaks to Owning Real Estate

Every time I meet with a potential Pasadena home buyer, a question comes up about tax benefits of home ownership. In this post, I’ll cover some of the tax incentives that are currently available. These tax incentives are a nice little bonus that is allowed by the IRS to add on to the satisfaction and enjoyment of being a homeowner.




interest deduction


Interest paid on the primary residence and a second or vacation home is deductible from one’s income tax. Since the vast majority of the early years’ mortgage payment is interest, this can be a substantial deduction, saving the homeowner thousands of dollars in Federal and State income taxes. This is often the largest single itemized deduction the taxpayer has.



Real estate property taxes are deductible on the primary residence and a second or vacation home. That portion of the homeowner’s monthly mortgage payment which goes toward the payment of real estate taxes may be deducted from federal income taxes. In the early years of a mortgage, as much as 95% of the payment goes toward interest and taxes, making as much as 95% of the total house payment tax deductible.


READ MORE: Decline in Value Reassessments

READ MORE: Property Tax increases on Your Pasadena Home



Property Tax Deduction


IRS codes allow individuals who already exceed the minimum standard tax deduction barriers to claim additional tax withholding allowances or exemptions when they purchase homes of greater value or second/vacation homes. This increase in W-4 exemptions allows the homeowner to receive $30-600 per month in additional take home pay from their employer. It may assist them in budgeting a home of greater value or a second home. This monthly increase in take home pay is in lieu of a large lump sum income tax refund. This little known tax law may also be used by first time purchasers, if they purchase a home which will allow them to itemize substantially more than the minimum standard deduction amount.



Moving expenses may be tax deductible if you are moving more than 50 miles from your present location. The actual moving expenses plus cost of the trips for job hunting and some other expenses associated with moving may be deductible.



home office


Part or full time use of an office in your home may be tax deductible. Under IRS rules, a prorated portion of the housing expense, operating expenses and depreciation may be deducted from income taxes if you use a portion of your home as an office, and you meet certain guidelines.





A homeowner may sell his principal residence and exclude up to $250,000 of profits under a capital gains exclusion. A married couple may exclude up to $500,000 in profits, each time they meet the eligibility requirements, but not more than every two years. To be eligible for this capital gain exclusion, the homeowner must have owned and occupied the home as a primary residence for at least two of the five years prior to the sale.



success key

Active real estate investors who actively participate in the management of rental properties can deduct up to $25,000 per year for deprecation, negative cash flows, interest, taxes, maintenance, repairs and miscellaneous costs, as long as their adjusted gross incomes do not exceed $100,000. $1,000 of the $25,000 deduction is eliminated for every $2,000 over the $100,000 adjusted gross income, until the AGI reaches $150,000.


No deductions are available for the 3-5% of taxpayers whose adjusted gross income exceeds $150,000. – However, the $25,000 tax deduction is a huge deduction and would be over and above the deductions for one’s primary residence and second home. This $25,000 tax deduction could conceivably reduce a gross income of $50,000 to a taxable income of only $25,000, resulting in a substantial tax savings. The tax savings would even be greater in states having state income taxes, as state income taxes are usually based on Federal income taxes, which would be lowered.


Information courtesy of Jeff Elias.

Posted on August 14th, 2008
Posted by: Irina Netchaev

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Yet Another Mention in Pasadena Weekly

Yet Another Mention in Pasadena Weekly

Joanna Beresford, a Pasadena Weekly reporter, wrote an article asking the ultimate real estate question – To Buy or Not To Buy? She was kind enough to interview me to get my perspective and gave me an honorable mention. :-)

So… here’s this week’s, August 14, 2008, Pasadena Weekly’s real estate article:

What Price is Paradise?

Key to a HomeNow may be the best time to make that move to a new home

By Joanna Beresford 08/14/2008

To buy or not to buy? That is the question. Is it better to await the possibilities of further plummeting home values and rock-steady interest rates or, by acting now, avoid the potential effects of world affairs, federal regulations and other cosmic catastrophes? And by acting, perchance, to acquire the home of your dreams …

Well, in a recent Los Angeles Times article, Celia Chen, director of housing economics for Moody’, contends that housing prices will continue to deflate by as much as 25 percent. In the same story, Los Angeles economist Christopher Thornberg agrees (so emphatically, in fact, that he resorts to using a bad word; can you really write H-E-double toothpicks in the newspaper these days? Wow).

“There’s no way in hell the house you buy now will be more expensive next year,” asserts Mr. Thornberg. Or, asserted. I don’t think he keeps on asserting it after the initial statement, in spite of literary convention, or unless he suffers from some form of Tourette’s syndrome, or something.

Naturally, no absolute realities will provide us with a singular, satisfying response to the question.

Many experts will advise consumers: calm down, don’t rush into anything, but consider MAKING A MOVE before the market turns something worse or different than upside down. So everyone scrambles to seize upon some semblance of a property, sell off the family heirlooms, scrape together a down payment, make an offer, and don’t think about sleeping or eating until you get a response from homeowner or banker.

That’s one way to go. But, then there’s the voice of reason. First of all, the Pasadena and San Gabriel Valley region aren’t equivalent to the country, the state, or even the county of Los Angeles. The region hardly comprises its own cohesive, discreet entity that can be uniformly assessed.

Enter two of my most enterprising, intelligent and doggone cute local resources. First, Martha Shanks, mortgage professional with Vesta Marketing, in Pasadena. Martha never freaks out or jumps to conclusions. Ask her about fluctuating markets and she replies with refreshing candor. “My initial response is this. I’ve always told people, and I’ve been saying until the last 30 days, that really time is on your side. You can buy or not, housing prices will probably continue to tumble. You’re in a perfect position to find the house that really suits your needs.”

Martha says won’t be surprised if home prices in general continue to drop, but she’s more likely, very recently, to consider the undulating landscape of world events, interest rates, etc. as potentially significant factors in the home-buying experience.

“It may make more sense to buy now,” she concedes.

Then there’s Irina Netchaev with Keller Williams Realty. I’m still toying with the idea that Irina is a beautiful Soviet-era spy, sent to the United States to report on our bad grammar, poor hygiene and other slovenly habits. She’s so elegant. But she also really knows her business, so I accept her at agent/face value. Here’s what Irina says about The Question.

“It is always a good time to buy real estate if you are prepared to buy real estate and have consulted with a real estate professional and lender to understand your options. For example, if a buyer has spoken with a lender, was preapproved and has a very clear understanding as to how much they can afford to pay monthly, what their closing costs will be and how much house they can afford, they are ready.”

Irina also expresses some concern about the possibility of rising interest rates: “The interest rates are still very low … If interest rates go up, even if the home prices go down, waiting could be a serious mistake.”

Guess what? When the first Midwestern settlers purchased the land that would become Pasadena in 1873, they bought the property for about $6.30 per acre. Boy, it’s a good thing they didn’t wait for the market to turn around, eh? In spite of the seemingly low-ball price, these Hoosiers (Indiana natives, mostly) believed they had stumbled upon an unlikely expanse of paradise, and that’s one thing that most of us, more than two centuries later, can agree on; so how do you put a price on that?

Joanna Dehn Beresford is a former teacher, nanny, actress, rock star, farm girl, waitress and clerk. She can be reached at

READ MORE: It’s fun to be famous if only for a day!

Posted on August 14th, 2008
Posted in About Us
Posted by: Irina Netchaev

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Arcadia California Community Profile – Peacock Village

Arcadia California Community Profile – Peacock Village

Pasadena Real Estate Blog is very pleased to welcome a new guest author – SavedByGrace from the Arcadia Housing Blog. I have been reading the Arcadia Housing Blog for the last 8 months now and find a non real estate agent’s perspective on the state of the housing market in Arcadia refreshing and interesting. So without further delay, here’s SavedByGrace and a community profile for Peacock Village in Arcadia.


This will be the first of several community profiles showcasing different areas in the city of Arcadia. The idea is to provide a general overview of distinct communities so that readers who are not familiar with the area have a better understanding of these places. While this has been on my to-do list for weeks, the credit goes to IrvineRenter over at IHB for coming up with this great idea. Without further adieu, our first community profile will be Peacock Village.

Peacock Village Street Signs

Peacock Village is bounded by Michillinda Avenue to the west, Baldwin Avenue to the east, Huntington Drive to the south and Colorado Street to the north. There’s a small area just west of Baldwin (north of the race track) that I also consider as part of this community.

Peacock Village map


Peacock Village is one of the older parts of Arcadia. A large piece of the land was bought by Scottish immigrant Hugo Reid in the mid-1800s and Hugo Reid Drive & Hugo Reid Park are named after this early resident. As you can see from the map, Peacock Village backs right up to the Arboretum of Los Angeles county. This is where the many peafowl reside, hence the name Peacock Village.

arcadia street view

The peacocks are left to roam free in the surround neighborhoods and they frequently leave the boundaries of the Arboretum and enter the surrounding streets. Even as I drove through the neighborhood this past weekend I was stopped by many who park their pretty selves smack-dab in the middle of the road. These beautiful, yet stubborn creatures are the symbol of Arcadia.


One of the features that speaks to me is the tranquility of the neighborhood. The community is separated from the 210 freeway by Colorado Blvd and two high walls plus ample trees to remove the residential area from the road as much as possible. Although it is next to the racetrack, arboretum, Westfield mall and 210 freeway, it was astoundingly quiet on a Saturday afternoon. I didn’t do a drive-by with a muscle car or a Harley-Davidson, but I felt like the hum of my engine was the loudest thing for miles.




Many of the streets are curved and less grid-like than the rest of Arcadia, yet the structure of the tire spikescommunity resembles more of the new OC developments with its carefully planned entrances and exits. There are 4 in/outlets off Colorado between Michillinda & Baldwin and 3 in/outlets off Huntington Drive. There are several more off Michillinda and just one exit to Baldwin. Some of the streets are only outlets that denies entrance to the community through the means of tire spikes. This restricts unnecessary traffic flow into the community that may come from the mall, racetrack or arboretum. It works well too because I frequently found myself accidentally exiting only to circle around to find a way back in.

The roads are often lined with giant, old trees that cast a big canopy over the wide streets. The lots are not the biggest offered in Arcadia, but they are a bit larger than many others in the rest of the city.

Arcadia's Tree Lined Streets

Arcadia street view


On top of that, I often see peacocks in the front lawn of many homes. They bring a wonderful sense of nature into this little suburban neighborhood. Wouldn’t that be a lovely thing to wake up to on a lazy weekend morning?

Arcadia Peacock

To its west side there is Hugo Reid Elementary School and Park. A typical Saturday afternoon consists of an all-American little league game complete with hotdogs and cheering family members. The tot-lot next to the field was clean and well maintained. There was also a medium sized open grassy area beyond the outfield, several tennis courts and what looked like a small batting cage. This park speaks well to the family-friendliness of the neighborhood.

Arcadia Peacock Village Park

During my drive through the area I saw mainly older, but well maintained homes with clean-cut, landscaped yards. The were many traditional ranch homes as well as several contemporary and colonial style homes. Most of the homes were sized to fit the lot and I was happy to see only a handful of newer McMansions.

Arcadia house

Arcadia house

Arcadia california house

If I have showcased your house and you would like the picture removed, just leave a comment or send me an email and I will take the picture down. I chose these homes because they represent the neighborhood and are probably homes that stood out to me. Here are some more for your viewing pleasure.

Arcadia Housing Collage

It is neighborhoods like this that draw me to the city of Arcadia. This is a beautiful, clean and serene community that clearly depicts pride of ownership. I find this neighborhood very family friendly and would consider a purchase here myself. If you live in this Arcadia neighborhood, I congratulate you on your purchase and thank you for doing your part to maintain the beauty of its character.

Thank you SavedByGrace!

Posted on August 13th, 2008
Posted in Arcadia
Posted by: Irina Netchaev

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Pasadena Mortgage Rates Report: August 11, 2008

Pasadena Mortgage Rates Report: August 11, 2008

Pasadena Mortgage rates for August 1, 2008. Loan amounts up to $417,000:


3/1 ARM 5.500%

5/1 ARM 5.750%

7/1 ARM 5.875%

10/1 ARM 6.250%

30 Yr Fixed 6.375%


All rates offered to the borrower with 1 point cost. Rate quotes assume a purchase transaction with a 20% down payment, 720 credit score, and full income qualification. Rates are subject to fluctuation. Custom rate quotes and rate lock advice are available by calling (858)-777-9751.



Next 7 days: Slightly Higher

Next 30 days: Neutral

Next 3 months: Neutral


Remember the song “Stuck in the Middle With You” by Stealer’s Wheel? It was background music for a particularly gruesome scene in the Quentin Tarantino movie, Reservoir Dogs.

Well, I don’t know why I came here tonight
I got a feelin’ that something ain’t right
I’m so scared in case I fall off my chair
And I’m wonderin’ how I’ll get down those stairs
Clowns to left of me, jokers to the right
Here am I stuck in the middle with you

Wall Street bond traders are singing that tune and it’s bouncing mortgage rates all over the place. They’re scared because they feel that “somethin’ ain’t right” with the underlying loans held by Fannie and Freddie. Still, the US Treasury Secretary has pretty much guaranteed that the government will back Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac should the dung hit the blades.


While the treasury securities market has been somewhat stable these past few weeks, mortgage-backed securities are bouncing all over. Some days ,they act like treasuries and the spread narrows. Other days, they act like junk bonds and the spread widens. If you listened to my “dog on a leash” analogy, imagine a rabid animal running away from a scared owner one day and a docile pet running and cuddling with him the next.


Like the song, says, we’re “stuck in the middle” which means, in my mind, we’ll see mortgage rates rise a bit, to the 6.5% level, then drop to the 6.0% level. We still haven’t seen the full effect of the Russian invasion to Georgia. The American response will be much more than a Bush and Putin exchange at the Olympics. Georgia is a SERIOUS U.S. ally with a major oil pipeline running through it. The Russian attack was clearly unprovoked and part of a concerted effort to weaken the US dispute with Iran.


We’re locking loans that are closing within 10 days with an eye towards locking late August closings some time next week (when mortgage rates come back down).

This mortgage rates report is offered courtesy of Brian Brady. Contact Brian for more information about a home loan or apply online.

Originally posted at Mortgage Rates Report on August 11, 2008

Posted on August 10th, 2008
Posted by: Irina Netchaev

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Monterey Hills Real Estate Market Report May 08 – July 08

Monterey Hills Real Estate Market Report May 08 – July 08

There are definite opportunities in Monterey Hills right now for both first time home buyers and investors. For the first time, we’re actually seeing 2 bedroom and 2 bath condos fall under $300,000 thanks to short sales and hesitant buyers.

The inventory for condos remains pretty much the same. Even though looking at the graph below, the number of total Monterey Hills condos dropped to 16, there were 8 condo listings that expired which suggests that they will be relisted and put back on the Monterey Hills real estate market shortly. At today’s rate of condo sales of about 5 per month, there’s about 17 weeks of existing inventory available.

Investor Recommendation: Wait for condos to drop around $275,000 if you’d like to be at break even at about 25% down.

Homeowner Recommendation: The prices are much lower than the surrounding South Pasadena and are perfect for purchase to live if you see a condo that you like, especially if you’re thinking of holding on to it for 3 to 5 years. Go for it!

READ MORE: South Pasadena Real Estate Housing Market Report for May 08 to July 08

Monterey Hills Townhouses are still hard to find. Inventory of Monterey Hills Townhouse listings has dropped to 2. Only a couple sell per month, but that can be do to the lack of available townhomes to begin with.

Condos May-08 Jun-08 Jul-08
New Listings 7 5 8
Total Listings 26 24 16
Sales Pending 6 4 3
Homes Sold 5 4 5
Listings Expired 3 2 8
Average Days on the Market 83 136 79
Average Price Per Sq. Ft.   $297 $302
Average Selling Price $356,400 $304,520 $344,578
Absorption Rate (# of weeks to sell current inventory at present rate of sales)   20.8 17.3
Townhomes May-08 Jun-08 Jul-08
New Listings 6 0 1
Total Listings 8 4 2
Sales Pending 0 1 2
Homes Sold 3 1 2
Listings Expired 0 0 0
Average Days on the Market 48 154 98
Average Price Per Sq. Ft.   $401 $302
Average Selling Price $426,000 $655,000 $465,500
Absorption Rate (# of weeks to sell current inventory at present rate of sales)   5.8 8.7

Data taken from ITEC (Pasadena Foothills Association MLS service)

If you are interested in beginning your search for a Monterey Hills condominium or townhouse, please click on the search home link here.

For weekly updates on Monterey Hills real estate market activity, please feel free to request market analysis reports with detailed information by clicking here. These reports are gathered and updated by Altos Research and will be emailed to you with my compliments.

Posted by Irina Netchaev 626-627-7107

Posted on August 9th, 2008
Posted by: Irina Netchaev

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Home Seller Tips: Custom Property Brochure & Marketing Your Home For a Quck Sale

Home Seller Tips: Custom Property Brochure & Marketing Your Home For a Quck Sale

Over the last couple of days we loooked at a Formula for Selling your Pasadena Home in 30 days or less.   It all comes down to getting your home ready for sale, pricing your Pasadena home correctly and marketing exposure.  

In my second post in the Selling Your Home series, we reviewed how best to showcase your home listing in the Multiple Listing Service (MLS) and the use of Flash Presentations or Home Tours.

Today, I wanted to take a look at how to create an effective Property Brochure for Pasadena home buyers.  This is especially helpful for our For Sale By Owner Sellers.

What is the purpose of a home property flyer or a brochure?

The main purpose of a home brochure is to ensure that home buyers will easily remember your home and be able to contact the home seller (if you are selling your home by owner) or the real estate agent representing your home.

Other reasons that home buyers pick up a brochure is to:

  1. Share information about the home with their friends and family.
  2. Easily access important data about the home – home sales price, square footage, HOA (if any), year home built, special features, etc.
  3. Compare your home with other homes that they have seen around Pasadena.

Choosing a property brochure design layout:

  1. Should this be a one page or a two page brochure?  I always recommend using both sides of your brochure.  Why waste the back of the brochure and leave it blank?  It’s just like thinking of a real estate location – 1st page of the brochure is your prime real estate and the back is secondary real estate location.  I prefer to have a stunning picture on the first page with home address and price.  The second page on my brochures will usually have more beautiful photographs and specific details about the home for sale.
  2. Color and Design of the Border of the brochure.  Using too many colors will actually take away from the brochure.  One or Two colors will add to a more striking presentation.
  3. Decide on text font and size.  Remember to have lots of white space for easy reading and headers as appropriate.

Describe your home:

  1. The first thing I recommend doing is going through your house room by room.  Make notes about what is special about each room.  What are your home’s highlights?  Think about how you entertain.  What do your friends and family like about this house?
  2. Have a concise leading paragraph and follow up with bullet points of special items and amenities.
  3. Be as clear as possible.  The very last thing you’d want to do is mislead a potential customer.  Do not over-enhance the home’s features.  Stay factual.

READ MORE:  Power Words that SELL

Add Photographs:

  1. Decide on the number of photographs that you will use.  I usually prefer to use 5 to 6 photos highlighting some of the rooms, the front of the house and the backyard.
  2. Make sure the photos are in order of how a buyer would view your home.  It will make it easier for the potential buyer to remember what it was like walking through your home.

Contact Information:

  1. Remember to put your name, phone number and email address so that potential buyers can get a hold of you quickly.

 Printing Property Brochures

  1. Good quality paper is an important part of the presentation.  Make sure that you select a good heavy stock paper.
  2. Always print in color.  Please, no black & white copies.  These are just a huge NO NO!
  3. There are plenty of printers that would be happy to print off 100 to 200 copies for you.  The average charge is about $75 for 100 flyers.  Have plenty on hand for the buyers and the potential agents that might stop by.


  1. Keep the home sale brochures available at the entry of the home presented in a nice stand.  Dining room table or kitchen bar works nicely as well.
  2. I am not a huge advocate of having brochures in front of your home in a brochure holder.  The idea here is to have buyers visit and view your home, not just pick up a brochure.  If you do choose to have some outside, make sure the brochures are of the highest quality so as not to discourage potential buyers.
  3. Distribute property brochures to local real estate offices.  Remember that even if you choose to sell your house by yourself, in all likelihood a real estate agent will end up selling it for you.  Get the local real estate community involved by letting them know that your home is for sale.  Most buyers will be represented by a professional real estate agent.

Okay, you are ready to start working on your property brochure.  Don’t forget to check your spelling!

Posted on August 8th, 2008
Posted in Sellers
Posted by: Irina Netchaev

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South Pasadena Real Estate Market Housing Report for May 2008 – July 2008

South Pasadena Real Estate Market Housing Report for May 2008 – July 2008

There are no surprises in the real estate market statistics in South Pasadena. Over the last three months, South Pasadena real estate activity has been pretty stable with an increase in pending sales in July. We always see an upswing in summer sales due to moves in and out of the area with kids being out of school.

New listings remain pretty constant with approximately 10 new homes coming on the market each month. There were less listings that expired indicating more price reductions and accepted offers.

New listings for South Pasadena condos and townhomes doubled between May 08 and June 08, but closed sales are still pretty low leading to a 45.5 week absorption rate. An absorption rate is a good indication of activity and inventory. It simply means that it will take a bit over 45 weeks to sell all available South Pasadena condos if sales continue at the current levels. Of course, next month’s absorption rate will be much lower given that the number of South Pasadena condos/townhomes with accepted offers more than doubled to 5 in July again mainly due to summer activity.

South Pasadena market has a high number of real estate inventory compared to real estate sales making it a perfect opportunity for buyers.

Single Family Residence May-08 Jun-08 Jul-08
New Listings 11 10 11
Total Listings 34 38 24
Sales Pending 8 9 14
Homes Sold 4 14 8
Listings Expired 27 6 4
Average Days on the Market 85 93 39
Average Price Per Sq. Ft. $532 $607
Average Selling Price $883,750 $1,579,714 $1,525,000
Absorption Rate (# of weeks to sell current inventory at present rate of sales) N/A 41.2 7.4
Condos and Townhomes May-08 Jun-08 Jul-08
New Listings 4 8 10
Total Listings 14 19 21
Sales Pending 3 2 5
Homes Sold 3 2 1
Listings Expired 14 1 9
Average Days on the Market 52 95 147
Average Price Per Sq. Ft. $402 $331
Average Selling Price $479,167 $635,944 $418,000
Absorption Rate (# of weeks to sell current inventory at present rate of sales) N/A 27.4 45.5

Real estate data based on information from ITEC (Pasadena Foothills Association MLS service)

For weekly updates on South Pasadena real estate market activity, please feel free to request market analysis reports with detailed real estate statistics information for South Pasadena and surrounding cities . These reports are gathered and updated by Altos Research and will be emailed to you with my compliments.

Posted on August 8th, 2008
Posted by: Irina Netchaev

No Comments »

Real Estate Agent Walking Away from Pasadena Home Listings

Real Estate Agent Walking Away from Pasadena Home Listings

I love helping home buyers and home sellers around Pasadena with their real estate needs. My passion, though, is helping sellers market and sell their homes for the highest possible price and in the quickest possible time.

An unfortunate real estate trend for me personally in this real estate market is that I have been walking away from listings. It seems like there are a lot of unreasonable sellers in the Pasadena market place recently.

I had 3 listing appointments over the last two weeks and decided NOT to work with any of these home sellers.

Here are the top 7 reasons for me NOT to list your home:

  1. Unreasonable sales price: It seems that there are a lot of uneducated or oblivious home sellers in Pasadena. Let me say this – NO REALTOR EVER SETS THE PRICE FOR A HOME! A final sales price is a function of the real estate market. It’s what a home buyer is willing to pay and a home seller willing to accept. There are clear real estate market statistics and indicators that drive the suggested price of a Pasadena home. I do not make them up. I can not change them at will. Multiple Listing Service and companies like Altos Research can provide comprehensive market statistics. OVERPRICING a home will only ensure that your home will sell for much less than what it is worth. I refuse to take a home listing that is overpriced and offer home sellers false hope. There are enough real estate agents out there that are willing to do that.
  2. Sellers refusal to Stage their home: Homes that are not staged properly will not sell for the highest possible price AND they will sit on the market, and sit on the market, and sit on the market. Did I make my point yet? I do not want to waste my time or the seller’s if they are unwilling to stage their home.
  3. Sellers that refuse to clean their homes and keep them clean during the listing agreement. That’s pretty self explanatory. Some people are willing to spend more time on getting their car ready for sale than their house.
  4. Sellers that refuse to give access to showing their house. So… what you’re saying is that you want to sell, but show it only when it pleases you? Selling a home is quite frankly inconvenient. If you live in the house that you are selling, it’s even more difficult. You lose a lot of your privacy. But, to sell the home successfully, easy access is needed to the house.
  5. Sellers insisting on paper advertising. Most buyers now come from the internet. I spend a lot of time and money optimizing my seller’s home listings so that these homes are found quickly and by many potential buyers. I refuse to placify sellers who just want to see their home photo in LA Times or Pasadena Star News. Did you know that LA Times is no longer publishing a Real Estate section? Why? Because it doesn’t work! When you hire me to sell your job, trust me to do just that. I am fully incentivized to sell it quickly and the highest possible price. After all, I do not get paid, until you do!
  6. Sellers insisting on continuous Open Houses. Open Houses do not work effectively. Some Open Houses, especially at the beginning of a home listing period are absolutely necessary. For example, broker’s open house, twilight neighborhood open house. Consistent open houses are only good for realtors. They are ways to find buyers – not for your home mind you, but for other available homes. Open Houses can lead to theft as in the recent number of San Marino home thefts during Open Houses. Again, Mr. & Mrs. Seller, please trust me to do my job and protect you and your investment.
  7. Sellers that argue with me over commission and contract period of the listing. Now… I can write, and probably will shortly, an article on commissions. Let me suffice it to say that you as a seller have options. You can choose to sell your Pasadena home yourself. You can sell it with a discount broker. Or, you can sell your home with me and get more in your bottom line. My home listings consistently sell for 3.1% more than the Pasadena Foothill Board average and sell 12% faster than the average*. I leverage the latest technology and social media marketing to ensure that your home sells quickly and for the most money. And, you can cancel your contract with me at any time with 24 hours notice. I take the risks, not you Mr. Home Seller.

So if you are a serious and motivated home seller in or around Pasadena, please call me. I’d love to work with you. If not, please call another agent or just try selling your home yourself.


* Statistics based on 2004 and 2005 data

Posted on August 8th, 2008
Posted by: Irina Netchaev

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