General Plan vs. Specific Plan

General Plan vs. Specific Plan

  General Plans and Specific Plans are adopted by counties and cities to regulate land usage according to the goals and vision of the community   What Is A General Plan? In California, every city and county must adopt a comprehensive or mater plan, known as a General Plan.  The General plan is the foundation for establishing purposes, zoning, and activities allowed on each land parcel to provide compatibility and continuity to an entire region as well as each individual neighborhood.  The General Plan is the blueprint to guide growth and land development in the community for the present and...Read more
LA vs Airbnb

LA vs Airbnb

Los Angeles Cracks Down On Short-Term Vacation Rentals   Los Angeles city officials are proposing new rules as they contend with a housing shortage that activists blame partly on businesses that convert large swaths of apartments into short-term rentals, which can net more money per night.  The proposed plan would empower Los Angeles to fine homeowners for advertising illegal rentals as well as the sites that hosted the ads. As it stands, short-term rentals are illegal in many residential areas of Los Angeles, but the city has struggled to enforce those rules as Airbnb, VRBO, and other websites have exploded...Read more
Tax Benefits of Income Property

Tax Benefits of Income Property

  Income properties have many financial advantages, including some tax benefits.  Learn how to take advantage of tax laws for income property ownership.   One advantage of investing in real estate is the tax benefits.  People considering the purchase of real property must examine the tax benefits and burdens of their purchase.  Many times, the tax implications will seriously affect a sale and cause a buyer or seller to realize that – because of the taxes – full value of ownership may not be possible.  What might look like a good deal could turn into a losing proposition after tax...Read more
What Millennials Want

What Millennials Want

  Millennials are influencing the marketplace, prioritizing integrated technology and storage solutions in modern home design.   The next generation of homeowners wants smart, stylish homes that enable them to connect with friends and family.  Millennials will lead the way in adopting new technology — making features like the ability to preheat an oven or unlock the front door from your smartphone the new norm in home convenience.   All About Millennials This segment was born between 1980 and 2000, meaning the youngest are in their mid-teens and the oldest are just hitting mid-thirties. Many are still in school and...Read more
The Evolution of Houses

The Evolution of Houses

    My, how houses have changed!  Everything changes over the years to reflect consumer’s taste and improvements in technologies, and the housing industry is no exception.    Taking a look back at the evolution of housing from the 1950s to today, we can see the changes in homebuyer’s priorities and lifestyle.  A new interactive graphic from Fielding Homes documents some of the following changes we have seen in single-family homes over the last few decades.   1950s Homes in the 1950s tended to have more bathrooms than bedrooms!  On average, homes had more shower space than sleep space with...Read more
Understanding Easements

Understanding Easements

  An easement can affect the value of a property.  If your property is subject to an easement, it is important to understand the type of easement in place to know how it will affect the use, control, or profitability of your property.   Easements An easement is the right to enter or use someone else’s land for a specific purpose.  An interest in an easement is non-possessory, meaning the holder of an easement can use it only for the purpose intended and may not exclude anyone else from using it.  Ingress is the right to enter onto a property...Read more
California’s Solar Initiative

California’s Solar Initiative

California Makes Solar Power Easy! What better place to take advantage of the sun’s rays then sunny California?  The state has been at the forefront of new and sustainable energy initiatives, with solar power being one of the most popular and widely accessible alternative energy solutions.  Homebuyers and even renters are enticed by “green” amenities, so outfitting your home with solar panels can have a big payoff! California’s Solar Programs California has been expanding the Go Solar California campaign, which includes incentives for qualified single-family, low-income homeowners (SASH), as well as incentives for qualifying affordable housing (MASH), the New Solar...Read more
Understanding Tax Proration

Understanding Tax Proration

Property taxes are paid current when a property is sold.  Find out how to calculate tax proration at the close of escrow.   Closing costs for the sale of real property will include property tax proration.  The purpose of a proration in a sale escrow is to fairly divide property expenses – such as taxes and homeowner’s association dues (HOAs) – between the buyer and seller to ensure each party is only paying for the days which s/he actually owns the property.   THE TAX YEAR Unlike the calendar year, the tax year begins on July 1 and ends on...Read more
Understanding the California Residential Purchase Agreement & Joint Escrow Instructions

Understanding the California Residential Purchase Agreement & Joint Escrow Instructions

  Learn how to read and negotiate the terms of the standard California Residential Purchase Agreement when buying or selling real estate.   The transfer of real estate is a legal process with loads of paperwork, often written in legalese.  While the interpretation can seem daunting for those new to the marketplace, the standard California Residential Purchase Agreement is not as complicated as it seems.  With built-in safeguards for both the buyer and seller, the standard California Residential Purchase Agreement is written with consumer protection in mind. Below we explain each section in detail.  Sections where terms can be edited...Read more
Calculating ROI

Calculating ROI

Real estate investors use the return on investment equation to evaluate the profitability of real estate investments.   What is ROI? Return on investment (ROI) is an accounting term that indicates the percentage of invested money returned to an investor after the deduction of associated costs.  Investors use ROI as a measurement to estimate and evaluate the performance of an investment or to compare the performance of a number of different investments. There are a couple different ways to calculate the ROI of a real estate investment, depending on the type of investment and other factors at play.   The examples...Read more