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I take great joy in helping people buy and/or sell houses, condos, and small income properties in the Oakland, Berkeley, Piedmont, & Alameda communities.
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May the joy and spirit of the season fill your home with warmth that lasts all winter long. Happy holidays!
Thinking of renting your home on AirBnB? Watch out for laws that may constrict or even prohibit this in the future. This article by Housingwire pertains to the Los Angeles area, but it could happen here next. Of particular note is that units covered by rent control ordinance could not be rented on AirBnB. This could certainly apply in Oakland, Berkeley, and San Francisco if they pass a similar law.
Airbnb has already gone to war with New York City and Boston after each city issued new laws addressing the rise of short-term rentals in each location. And now, Los Angeles is joining those two cities in moving to limit short-term rentals.
It seems the media always latch on to the negative point of view. This Realty Check article emphasizes the recent market downturn with less property listings are getting multiple offers than last year. This is true, but there still are many that DO get multiple offers - the ones that are well-presented and well-marketed. The sky is not falling yet.
Home sales have slowed to a crawl nationally, and it's not just the winter temperatures, it's the weaker pulse of the market, especially the markets that were hottest just last spring.
AirBnB is going to build houses?! What next?
The company is moving beyond short-term rentals with “an endeavor to design and prototype new ways of building and sharing homes.”
Market preparation can make so much difference in the sales price of a property! This listing of mine at 2237 Curtis Street in Berkeley just broke the highest price record for the Poet's Corner neighborhood, a whopping $1,470,000 for a 2 bedroom home, in large part because the seller invested in making it look spectacular with the help of home staging/preparation team I referred her to.
Coldwell Banker Western Region videos
Here is a great real estate video "Weather Report" for the real estate market in the East Bay.
December 2018 East Bay Real Estate Weather Report: more inventory, fewer sales, prices dropping.
Never assume everything comes with the house you are purchasing. Here is an article with some tips about that. Bottom line though - whatever your purchase agreement with the seller says rules.
These five items are not considered fixtures when buying a home. You'll be surprised to learn what doesn't come with the house!
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Yet another great addition to our marketing program, I can make a video slideshow for my listings. It even has jazzy music. Here is the one for my new listing at 4275 39th Ave in Oakland, CA.
Coldwell Banker Western Region videos
Very exciting! Coldwell Banker is now producing TV spots for our listings! Here is a preview of the one for my new listing at 2941 Madeline Street in Oakland, CA. It will air next weekend on Channel 7 at 4 pm, along with another new listing I have at 4275 39th Ave. Enjoy.
2941 Madeline Street, Oakland, CA Map it at https://www.google.com/maps/place/2941+Madeline+Street+Oakland+CA,17z www.ColdwellBankerHomes.com Vicky Faulk - C...
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It is definitely taking most buyers longer to purchase a home in this crazy Bay Area market. Competition can be fierce and prices are high. 'Dream Home' has taken on a different meaning, more like 'Whatever Home I Can Get'. Interesting to note that this article from Realtor.com says only 16% of buyers intend to give up. In my personal experience, that number has been much higher. Last year I had eight buyers give up. But they now have no home and the prices are higher. In most cases it is better to make a sacrifice and get a house, in my opinion.
Be prepared to work with house hunters over months, not weeks, before they ultimately find a home to buy.
I was recently alarmed to hear that a good friend of mine owns a vacation property that may be jeopardized by a wild fire. So scary. Here is an article about what areas have the highest risk of fire from SFGate. It is certainly something to be aware of when you purchase property. And just in case, be sure you have a good insurance policy.
Verisk's findings relied on three factors: First, it looked at how close a given home is to shrubbery and forest land; next it considered if it's on mountainous or hilly terrain; and finally, it looked at how accessible it might be to emergency responders.
Shopping for a home and wondering what things you can easily do to make improvements? Here is a great Houzz article about that from Coldwell Banker Blue.
From price and location to the physical structure itself, the list of things to keep in mind when shopping for a house can seem endless. But some problems you encounter don’t need to affect your final decision.
Just when you think you've seen every kind of house, there is a new innovation. Check this out - they are made of cement extruded in layers by 3D printers!
Developers say project will cut costs and environmental damage and offer solution to shortage of bricklayers
July 22nd is National Hammock Day. Who knew? Certainly a welcome enhancement to a home porch or back yard.
by Anna Fletcher Today, we celebrate the symbol of absolute comfort, the reason to slow down and take it easy during these warm summer months, and the best piece of indoor/outdoor furniture ever: the hammock. July 22nd is National Hammock Day, and we’re celebrating all day long! With summer in ful...
You may have noticed, but rents are still on the rise. Surprised to see that the San Francisco Bay Area is not cited as one of the highest increases.
For many, the biggest barrier to homeownership is saving for that hefty downpayment. Rising rents ex...
Vicky Faulk - Oakland, Berkeley, Piedmont, Alameda - CA Real Estate
Very interesting NY Times article about taxation they are considering in Vancouver BC to cool the overheated housing market there. Will this be happening here in the Bay Area?
Facing a crisis of affordability, officials are trying to reduce real estate demand through a package of tax measures, some aimed at foreign buyers.
Just ran across this great online blog about the basics of home staging. Yes, it is true, for every dollar you spend on appropriate staging you get 2 or 3 or even more back. Big hint from me though, do not pick your own colors! Find out what the best colors are to use in your market area.
Looking to sell your home for maximum profit? Don't forget these critical home staging tips.
Congratulations to Linda Hoffman and her husband Robert for winning this month's Coldwell Banker prize drawing! They will be going to the Warriors game this weekend on us! Yay!
I ran across this great article on Coldwell Banker's Blue Matter Blog about enhancing your home's curb appeal. Many times I encounter sellers that have let their lawns go to brown patches and weeds. It is possible, if you plan ahead by several months, to revive the lawn area by spreading quick growing seed. They know at the nursery if you ask them what kind grows fast.
Here are a few simple upgrades to help boost your curb appeal.
I realize many of us are short on closet space, but if you happen to have some extra room, check out these creative ideas on the Coldwell Banker blog, guest article from Houzz.
Here are some inspiring examples of closet transformations including a home bar, gym and office.
I ran across this great article with tips for conserving money. Some as simple as changing a light bulb.
Homes cost a lot of money to maintain. But are you spending extra money unnecessarily on the upkeep of your home?
This is a great article about the benefits of pre-listing home inspections. This practice has become commonplace in Oakland, Berkeley, Piedmont, and Alameda where I work. A few comments however - an inspection in this area usually costs $500 - $700, not the lower national rate quoted in the article, and in California, the entire report must be disclosed to buyers, not just a summary. That would be considered withholding information that a buyer should be make aware of.
Steve Wadlington, president of WIN Home Inspection, explains how sellers can avoid potential conflict with buyers and gain an edge in negotiations.
Our Coldwell Banker blog has some great tips for setting up your home work space. Practical but also aesthetically pleasing.
Here are 8 essential elements to integrate into your workspace at home to set the foundation for a great year.
Purchasing a home just got a tiny bit more expensive in California. Placer Title sent me this synopsis of a new law that imposes an additional $75 fee for certain recorded documents. The good news is that the funds are to be used to fund low income housing projects.
With San Francisco one of the 6 cities in the US where most people can't afford to purchase a house, come on over to Oakland where you can purchase for half the cost (at least that is what this article says). Note that New Orleans is one of the 6 cities, not because the prices are high, but because the wages are low.
LOS ANGELES, Jan. 2, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- Six cities on the U.S. coasts have a 70 percent or higher percentage of...
Does your home have outdated and unwanted features? These can affect the sale price you receive. A little investment in changing specific things can make a huge difference, because one dated feature can lead a buyer to think the overall home is more dated than it really is. Impressions are everything.
Just For Fun - Check out this darling little sliver of a house. You need to watch for a bit before you really see how narrow it is. The story is great too.
From the front, this appears to be a normal tiny home. But walk around to the side, and you’re in for a big surprise. Read more about the home: http://www.zi...
Great tips from Bottom Line for keeping your credit score high.
Keep your credit score high by avoiding these five common mistakes.
Here are 5 ways to start the New Year off in your home from Coldwell Banker's great blog, Blue Matters.
Get your home in tiptop shape for the new year. Here are some important and efficient ways to get your home ready for the new year.
Starting out the new year, the most frequent question I get is how the new tax law could affect the local real estate market. Here is a great article from RISMedia that outlines what some of the impact could be.
The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act has implications for owners. Experts in housing sound off.
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Come to Alameda's Harbor Bay Isle and check out this fabulous listing I have that is right on the lagoon with it's own boat dock landing. Really a treasure to behold! 352 Channing Way, Open 9/24 from 2 - 4:30 pm. Oh, and the house is really nice too!
All that rain earlier this year has caused a proliferation of combustible vegetation, ready and waiting for the fire season. Are you and your home prepared? Our California Home blog has a great article about this.
Summers in California are typically hot, dry and windy. These weather conditions often bring the threat of large wildfires in the Golden State. 2017 has been an unusually trying year for wildfires. So far this year, there have been more than 3,200 fires in California, scorching nearly 113,000 acres...
Don't miss the opportunity to see one of the best Bay views in Piedmont at my new listing at 320 Scenic Ave, and featuring Kate Buckelew's stunning contemporary art! It will be open Sat and Sun 7/23 and 7/24 from 1 - 5 pm, also the following weekend from 2 - 4:40 pm. Come by and say Hi.
More and more people are opting to stay in their homes and 'age in place'. This often means making modifications to the house to accommodate infirmities or disabilities. Here is a great article about that from Housecall. The article is geared toward the disabled, but it applies to many elderly as well.
Being able to live independently prevents depression, increases lifespans, and can even improve some conditions for the disabled.
Consumer confidence for the housing market is continuing to increase -
"The Fannie Mae Home Purchase Sentiment Index® (HPSI) increased 2.1 percentage points in June to 88.3, matching the all-time high from February of this year. The rise can be attributed to increases in four of the six HPSI components. The net share who reported that now is a good time to sell a home reached a new record high, increasing an additional 7 percentage points, outpacing the net 3 percentage point increase of Americans who reported that now is a good time to buy a home. As a result, the net share who say it’s a good time to sell compared to those saying it’s a good time to buy widened once again this month, which continues to indicate a potential seller’s market. Americans also expressed greater belief that mortgage rates will go down over the next 12 months, with that component increasing 3 percentage points. Finally, the net share of consumers who think home prices will go up increased by 6 percentage points this month."
These are some comments copied from the Fannie Mae website. You can read more about this at the site:
A monthly poll about owning and renting a home, home and rental price changes, the economy, household finances, and overall consumer confidence.
6137 La Salle Ave
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