It’s Official: Buying a Home is Cheaper Than Renting

According to a recent Buy vs Rent Report, continued low interest rates for a 30-year fixed rate mortgage makes homeownership cheaper than renting in many of the largest metro areas in America. Depending on your location, you can save anywhere between 5% and 46% by purchasing a home instead of renting. The report also points out that mortgage interest rates would have to increase to 10.6% in order for renting to be more economical, but it’s been 27 years since the rate has been that high. Click on the link below to read more on this topic.

http://tinyurl.com/hu6um6e

Posted in Bay Area - General, bay area real estate, Buying, buying vs renting, Uncategorized | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Selling Your Home? Beware of Overpricing

In the current real estate market, sellers still have the upper hand because demand continues to outpace the supply of available housing and many homeowners may be tempted to start with a high listing price then lower it later if necessary. But studies have shown that pricing a house too high can actually cause you to get a lower price than you would have gotten if it had been priced right in the beginning. Click on the link below to find out why the “start high and lower later” strategy is not a good idea.

http://tinyurl.com/jl8k6tm

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Homeownership: First Step to a Successful Retirement

Good paying jobs or being successful in the stock market oftentimes provides a great start in creating wealth for oneself, but that usually can only go so far. According to a recent report, homeownership provides Americans with the asset-building equity to be financially secure in their retirement years. In fact, Americans aged 55 and over have half of their total assets tied to their homes. Click on the link below to read more on this topic.

http://tinyurl.com/jafoq3s

Posted in Bay Area - General, bay area real estate, Buying, buying vs renting, silicon valley, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Los Altos Spring Cleaning – and Hazardous Waste Disposal!

The City of Los Altos is once again teaming up with Santa Clara County to host the 2016 Los Altos Household Hazardout Waste Disposal Event on Saturday, April 16. Now’s the time to get rid of the toxic household products that you no longer need. The event is free to Los Altos residents but appointments are required. Schedule your appointment today by calling 408-299-7300 or visit www.hhw.org. The specific event location in Los Altos will be disclosed once your appointment has been confirmed. Click on the link below for more details about the event and a list of common household Hazardous waste products.

http://tinyurl.com/h3mkhqk

 

Posted in Bay Area - General, Events, Home Maintenance, Home Tips, Los Altos, Recycling, silicon valley, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Mountain View Council Cheers Google’s Futuristic Plans

Google’s self-designed vision for its new 18-acre North Bayshore campus is drawing rave reviews from the City of Mountain View. Excited council members believe the futuristic design, which includes glass walls, solar panels instead of roofs and a promenade of retail stores and restaurants open to the public, will become a major showpiece for the city. Click on the link below to read more on this topic.

http://tinyurl.com/zy38vjd

Posted in Bay Area - General, bay area real estate, Energy Efficiency, Google, Mountain View, Santa Clara County, silicon valley, Technology, Uncategorized | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Thinking of Selling Your Home Yourself? Think Again…

With the real estate market currently favoring sellers, some homeowners may be tempted to try to sell their own homes (also known as “For Sale by Owner”) and save themselves the cost of real estate commissions. They may not realize the amount of time and effort that’s required to effectively market their home and negotiate the best possible price. And the mandatory paperwork has increased over the years – all of which helps to protect both parties and to avoid legal ramifications. The bottom line should be the “net” sale price, the proceeds remaining at the end of the sale.  Click on the links below to read more on this topic.

http://tinyurl.com/zplqogb

http://tinyurl.com/hdrungf

Posted in Bay Area - General, bay area real estate, Selling, silicon valley, Uncategorized | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Home Maintenance – Plumbing…

If you own one of traditional ranch-style homes in the Bay Area you probably have 50-60 year-old galvanized steel or cast-iron pipes under your home.  If you haven’t had a plumber out to check the subarea (assuming you have a crawl space and don’t have a concrete slab foundation) you may be in for a surprise.

Most of the time we don’t realize what condition our pipes are in until we have a problem. My home had recurring issues with our plumbing for several months that our plumber was not able to repair.  We finally had a different plumber out who found we had some badly corroded pipes.  We did a complete re-pipe – this can cost you $6-10k depending upon the size and layout of your home.  This entails replacing all supply plumbing with copper and all waste plumbing with ABS plastic.

Take a look at a few examples of corroded pipes and fittings…

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