Michael E. Anderson
Michael E. Anderson
Broker Assoc. ABR, RSPS BRE# 01417114
(805) 698 - 3770
Anderson Home Pros Real Estate
3471 Turtle Creek
Orcutt, CA 93455
805-698-3770

Central Coast Thanksgiving & Home Tips

Happy Thanksgiving

For each new morning with its light, For rest and shelter of the night, For health and food, for love and friends, For everything Thy goodness sends. ~Ralph Waldo Emerson

Central Coast Home & Real Estate

Thanksgiving Prep Tips

1. Leave Cooking and Cleaning Behind These days, many people opt to go out for Thanksgiving, instead of cooking and cleaning at home. If you’re an extremely busy person, this may also work for you. If you don’t want to miss the feeling of being at home, lots of supermarkets and restaurants offer fully cooked Thanksgiving dinners. You simply pick everything up and place it on your table ready to be served, and if you must add a personal touch, make one special dish of your own.
2. Let’s Talk Turkey First, determine how much room you have in your freezer and refrigerator, and how many people you will be serving. Then, order your turkey. If you need more storage space, perhaps a neighbor or relative can help you out. Rather than defrosting a frozen turkey in water on Thanksgiving Day, defrost it a few days ahead in your refrigerator instead. This saves tons of time!
3. Check Your Inventory Check your supply of chairs, tables, dishes, glasses, pots, pans, serving plates and utensils. Arrange to buy, rent or borrow anything you don’t have.
4. Plan Your Meal Plan your meal from appetizers to dessert on a piece of paper. Make a list of all ingredients needed. Bring your list when you go shopping and check items off as you put them in your cart.
5. Cook Ahead Make any dishes that you can well ahead of time, and freeze them. On Thanksgiving Day, just defrost, heat and serve. You will save tons of time, plus you’ll be able to join in the festivities without being stuck in the kitchen.
6. Get Ready the Night Before You’ll be happy you took care of a few things the night before. Set the table. Get the good silverware out of storage. Lay out your wardrobe-and your kids’ wardrobes. Excerpt from Maria Gracia, founder of GET ORGANIZED NOW!

Fall Home Improvement Tips:

Exterior Paint Fall offers plenty of days that are warm enough to work with exterior paint, and a touch-up can help prolong the life of your siding and trim. A fresh coat of paint or sealer on any surface that potentially will be showered with rain, such as wood floors or stairs, also is a wise idea. Sooner is better to contact a local painter, as many paints aren’t recommended for application on days when the temperature dips below 45-50º F.
Lawn Care To ensure your lawn’s health and beauty come spring, complete several important yard work projects in the fall. Raking leaves and aerating will prevent your lawn and garden beds from suffocating, while fertilizing and winterizing grass, trees, and shrubs will allow your greenery to enter its winter slumber comfortably and properly nourished. Professional lawn-care services make quick work of these projects, freeing up your time for family, friends, and football. www.bhg.com

Recipes

Roasted Brussel Sprouts with Pecans 2 pounds Brussels sprouts, trimmed and halved, 1 cup pecans, roughly chopped, 2 tablespoons olive oil, 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped, kosher salt and black pepper
1. Heat oven to 400º F. On a large rimmed baking sheet, toss the Brussels sprouts, pecans, oil, garlic, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Turn the Brussels sprouts cut-side down.

2. Roast until golden and tender, 20 to 25 minutes. By Sara Quessenberry

Holiday Savings

Decorate Smarter to Save Energy Festive lights have become one of the staples of the holiday season; however, the energy it takes to power these little lights can cause you to lose your holiday cheer when the electric bill arrives in January.

Consider making the transition this year to light-emitting diode (LED) holiday lights. These lights are 80 percen-90 percent more efficient than traditional lights. LEDs are shatterproof, shock resistant, and cool to the touch. Not only can they save you substantial cash, but these lights are safer for your family and can help prevent the risk of fire.

Avoid the hassle of turning your lights on and off manually by setting an automatic timer. You can customize the settings on your timer to shut off overnight and during the daytime so the lights are only on when you and your family are home to enjoy them.

Central Coast Real Estate News

Santa Maria Real Estate Market Watch

Santa Maria & Orcutt Real Estate Year to date home sales with 2013 & 2014 stats and REOs

Central Coast and Santa Maria Real Estate has seen a steady increase in values and with all the new construction coming online the inventory has given buyers great selection of homes. As you can see in this graphic, sales volumes are down from last year but cash sales are strong with 18 cash transactions in September. REOs (foreclosures) are also down significantly 32 ytd vs. 89 for the same period in 2013 along with much fewer short sales.

Lenders are seeing lower interest rates which will be a strong incentive for buyers and sellers alike.

Mortgage rates are largely flat on Thursday, November 6. The benchmark 30-year fixed rate loan is advertised at 4.000% today with a 4.052% APR. Buyers can lock into the shorter-term 15-year fixed mortgage at 3.375% with an APR of 3.466%.

Larger conforming loan amounts between $417,000 and $625,500 are available in designated high-cost areas. A larger 30-year mortgage is quoted at 4.000% today with a 4.029% APR. The larger 15-year fixed loan is quoted with an interest rate of 3.250% today with a 3.319% APR. Buyers can lock into the larger 5/1 adjustable rate mortgage with an interest rate of 3.125% with a 2.907% APR to start.

The best rate for a 30-year mortgage today is 3.875% for a jumbo loan with an APR of 3.907%. The 15-year jumbo mortgage is quoted at 3.625% today with an APR of 3.663%. Jumbo borrowers can lock into a 5/1 jumbo ARM at 2.750% for the first five years with an APR of 2.780% to start.

Disclaimer: The advertised rates were submitted by each individual lender/broker on the date indicated. Rate/APR terms offered by advertisers may differ from those listed above based on the creditworthiness of the borrower and other differences between an individual loan and the loan criteria used for the quotes.

Michael & Rita Anderson and the rest of the Anderson Home Pros group wish all a wonderful and safe Thanksgiving.

Home Remodeling-Not For The Faint Of Heart

NoProjectLeftUndoneAs a Central Coast Real Estate Broker I often get asked to do some rehab work on investors’ properties to ready them for sale. This year has been no exception. I started the year with a property built in the late 60s, and like most 50 year old homes it needed some updating: new counters, windows, plumbing fixtures and general cleanup and painting. A real surprise was the pipe from the house to the city sewer main which the prospective buyer had “scoped” by a local (and respected) plumbing company. They came back saying the pipe from the house to the sewer main was bad, de-laminated, with massive root invasion and just had to be replaced. Their plumbing company gave us an estimate of over $20,000 to replace the line. I hired an engineering company and they offered to change the line for a third of that price. The real kick in the head was we opened the old line… and there was NOTHING wrong with it! I was there when the backhoe uncovered it and it was it was in perfect condition. No collapsed or broken sections and water flowed at full force through the entire pipe! I am telling you this so you know that you must be there when they “scope” the line and see it for yourself. There are some major plumbing companies that are preying on the public and during a sales transaction most sellers want to please the buyers. Do not just trust a company just because they are large, have a fancy truck or show you a video from who knows when. Continue…

Santa Maria, Orcutt & Central Coast News

Record 57 Million Americans Living in Multi-Generational Households

Source: Wall St. Journal

A record 57 million Americans—or 18.1 percent of the population—lived in multi-generational households in 2012, according to an analysis of Census data by the Pew Research Center. Overall, the share of Americans living in multi-generational households continues to climb, and the recession accelerated the trend. Making sense of the story The number of multi-generational households has doubled since 1980. The arrangement of having multiple generations together under one roof spiked during the Great Recession of 2007-2009 and has kept growing in the post-recession period, albeit at a slower. Young adults ages 25 to 34 have been a major component of the growth in the population living with multiple generations since 1980—and especially since 2010. Continue…

Central Coast Real Estate Values

offers_above_asking_priceReal Estate values on the Central Coast.

Over the last few years while the bubble was bursting and everyone’s home value plummeted, the issue of how to place monetary value on a home came front and center. Appraisers whose job it was to estimate those pre-bubble values were assailed daily for making a valiant attempt to keep up with market conditions. Prices were changing every day and almost daily they would have to adjust their mathematical formulae. It was a daunting task to say the least.
Fast forward to today’s Central Coast Real Estate Values and marketplace: The Feds, in their infinite (sic) wisdom, decided to set arbitrary conditions and limitations on how this industry was going to operate. Like most knee-jerk reactions by our members in Congress this was done with good intent but did not have the desired result. This law, The Dodd-Frank Interim Rule on Real Estate Appraisal Requirements hamstrung appraisers and stopped most, if not all home appreciation in its tracks. Since that time homeowners and Real Estate professionals have struggled, applying more realistic values based on supply and demand principles. They soon found other methods, such as using the CPI (Consumer Price Index), for instance, does not work for all homes in all neighborhoods. Every home is unique and as such has potentially different values. The only way forward was the willingness of the population to drag the market values up by offering over asking price or appraised values. The chart above proves that point. This method to increase values takes a firm resolve by the buyers who perceive value as what it is worth to them at a given time for a desired product. Home inventories are still very low and demand is still high which is driving values higher. Many of our transactions exceed appraised value based on this understanding, not CPI.
Every home is different and every transaction is based on perceived value. I could go on about quality, maintenance, curb appeal, staging, neighborhoods, schools and a myriad of reasons of what creates that perceived value in the public mind. However, the bottom line of price to value is still the 400 lb gorilla in the closet: Appraisers who were the first to feel the pain of this law are reluctant to allow their appraisals to rise too fast lest they get accused again of inflating the market. That lands us back to the question of what the sellers and buyers are supposed to do. Offering more than appraised value or listed value is one of the only possible solutions out of this conundrum but cash sales are becoming more common. In March cash sales almost doubled in Santa Maria, being 43 for March versus only 24 for February.
I was recently involved in a transaction where the actual value exceeded market value by tens of thousands of dollars. It was perceived by the buyer that the desirability of the home made appraised value a moot point. Obviously the banking/lending industry whose sole purpose is to protect investors prefers to base their decisions on appraised value. The banking industry is not happy about buyers and sellers taking these decisions out of their hands. This trend is allowing the market place to set the equilibrium, which in my opinion is a more natural and desirable state of affairs.
If you are thinking of buying or selling I recommend having a serious conversation with a Real Estate professional so you have a firm understanding of the market forces that drive values in today’s market. Trends like the one discussed in this article will definitely affect your buying and selling strategies and your Realtor or Broker is the one best equipped to give you timely advice.

Water Crisis Solutions For Your Home

Water Crisis On The Central CoastWater Crisis Solutions For Your Home

We on the West coast know full-well how valuable water is. It has become a serious issue for all California Central Coast homeowners & residents. This month we would like to focus on what you can do for very low cost and what would provide the highest return on your investment.

Since spring has come and we look to our gardens and yards that are hopefully springing back to life, I wanted to start there. As you can see by the informative chart, our yards landscaping consume 57% of water resources. There is something wonderful about vast expanses of  bright lawn. However, lawns require the most amount of water of any feature in our yards. As a Real Estate professional on the California Central Coast I would not tell you to remove all your lawn, since most buyers want and desire a lawn area, but I would recommend that you reduce the size, use water retaining fertilizers, increase mower height to reduce evaporation, follow a reduced water schedule, and make sure any runoff is minimal. The second place to focus your water-saving efforts is to install drip irrigation in your flower beds. Watering with drip emitters, micro spray heads or weep hoses delivers water efficiently and economically. Why water weeds?…focus on giving each plant exactly what it needs to prosper. Using drip is very beneficial to your landscaping. My third suggestion is to use a mulch in your flower beds to reduce evaporation and help to keep weeds down. There are many other suggestions on where to save water in your daily life such as turning off your faucet when brushing your teeth could save as much as 10 gallons a day or cutting your shower back to 5 minutes vs. 10 minutes could save 12.5 gallons a day. Continue…