September Market Share-page-001

 

 

3rd Quarter 2014 Market Share-page-001

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Whether you’re a first-time buyer or you’ve been around the block a few times, there are certain home buying mistakes that trip people up time and time again.
Before you sign on the dotted line to purchase your next home, take a look at these common mistakes to make sure you’re not in danger of committing any of them.
1. Falling in Love at First Sight
Don’t mistake your initial enthusiasm over a home as a sign that it’s “the one” for you. You may be swooning over its grand master suite or landscaped backyard, but if it’s off in other fundamental areas — like missing an extra bedroom or creating a long commute to your job — you won’t truly be happy there in the long run.
It’s always a good idea to sleep on it if you can, and to bring along someone (like a spouse or trusted friend) who can bring you back to reality when needed.
2. Having an Unrealistic Wish List
No house is 100 percent perfect, and you can miss out on some great properties if you get too hung up on checking off everything on your wish list. Get clear on what counts as a “must-have” and what’s simply “nice-to-have.” Perhaps a great school district is a “must,” while granite countertops are “nice.”
Don’t get swayed by beautiful fixtures and finishes. You can always update your home later, if the basic fundamentals (location, size, price) is a great fit for you.
3. Not Considering the Neighborhood
You’re not just buying a home; you’re also buying its neighborhood. So make sure the neighborhood is one you’ll want to live in for the foreseeable future.
What is the street traffic like? Is it in a good school district? Is it close to amenities you value, like a pool or shopping center? And don’t forget your immediate neighbors — will you be living next door to a house full of rowdy kids (or a grumpy curmudgeon who won’t appreciate your rowdy kids)?
4. Not Getting a Home Inspection
You wouldn’t buy a used car without first making sure it ran properly, so why would you buy a home without first making sure it runs properly?
A home inspection is a crucial part of the home buying process that can save you from tens of thousands of dollars in unforeseen repairs down the road. Never buy a piece of real estate without first getting a thorough home inspection from a licensed professional.
5. Ignoring the Resale Value
Don’t forget that purchasing a home is one of the biggest financial decisions you’ll ever make. While your main concern is finding a home that works well for you in the immediate future, also bear in mind its potential resale value years from now.
Is it in an up-and-coming neighborhood, or do the other homes on the block look permanently run-down? Are you thinking of making some custom changes to it (like turning the garage into a family room) that could turn buyers off when it’s time to sell? You ideally want your home to increase in value over time, but remember: not all houses rise in value. Appreciation is not a foregone conclusion. Research neighborhoods closely, and make the most educated choice possible — while accepting that we can’t ever know the future with total accuracy.
6. Overestimating Your DIY Tendencies
Buying a fixer-upper can be a great investment — if you’re willing to put in the sweat equity. It’s easy to get excited about renovation potential when you’re touring a home and envisioning its possibilities, but you need to be honest with yourself when it comes to how much work you’re really willing and able to put into a home. Otherwise you’ll end up with a never-ending project you’ll only resent.
7. Making a Small Down Payment
If you can’t afford to put down the full 20 percent on a house, you should seriously reconsider whether you’re ready to buy a home. Putting down anything less than 20 percent means you’ll be hit with private mortgage insurance (PMI) payments, which is an extra payment you’ll need to make each month, in addition to mortgage interest and your principal balance.
If you ultimately decide to go forward, shovel as much money as possible towards your mortgage so that you can reach a 20 percent equity threshold quickly. Once you gain 20 percent equity, you can request to stop making PMI payments, but you’ll need to pro-actively initiate that process — it’s not automatic.

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Marketing Piece Final

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We have a buyer looking for Laguna Niguel home with pool.

Up to $950,000

Contact me:

Jamie Blakely

http://www.surfandsandestates.com/

Cell: 949.533.6511
Email: jamieblakely7@gmail.com
CalBRE #01342518

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1000025304 [P]4_001-page-001

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Blue Lantern Dining Area Blue Lantern Downstairs Bath Blue Lantern Downstairs Bedroom Blue Lantern Jet Tub Blue Lantern Kitchen Blue Lantern Living Room 2 Blue Lantern Living Room Blue Lantern Master Bedroom Blue Lantern Third Bedroom Blue Lantern View from Master Bedroom

33672 Blue Lantern unit 6 Dana Point Ca 92629

Amazing panoramic ocean, coastline and city lights view.
3 bedrooms 3 baths 2,165 sqft. Main floor Master bedroom
Panoramic ocean, coastline and city light views.
Completely remodeled. Enjoy great location, 2 car direct access.

 

Please contact:

Jamie Blakely

http://www.surfandsandestates.com/

Cell: 949.533.6511
CalBRE #01342518

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The Coastal Commission weighs in on the historical significance of the home and decides remodels have destroyed its essence.

John Meehan

Property owner John Meehan can demolish a house on Coast Highway in Laguna Beach that has fallen into disrepair and build anew.

The California Coastal Commission sided with previous Design Review and City Council determinations that the single-family house at 31381 Coast Hwy., referred to as Stonehenge, had not maintained its historical integrity and unanimously denied an appeal by preservationist groups South Laguna Civic Assn. and Village Laguna at a hearing in Long Beach last week.

“[Commissioners] agreed with the position we’ve taken all along, that this house was not the house built in [the 1920s],” Meehan’s attorney, Larry Nokes, said of the 12-0 vote.

Commissioners agreed with the agency staff’s recommendation that the residence, which also includes a guest house, detached two-car garage and beach access stairs, has lost its architectural integrity and is not historically significant, the staff report said.

The house, listed on the city’s historic inventory, endured several remodels through various owners before Meehan purchased the property in 2011, and no longer depicts the original structure, Nokes said.

All that’s currently left of the house are wood frames — inside furnishings and walls were illegally removed within the last five years. Police do not know who performed the unpermitted acts, though officers were called to the house 16 times since 2007 for reports of loud drumming and trespassing, Capt. Jason Kravetz wrote in an email.

South Laguna Civic Assn. and Village Laguna representatives claim the house, which they say was built by Guy Skidmore, who helped dedicate nearby West Street and Camel Point beaches, still has enduring qualities reminiscent of yesteryear.

“The steep pitched roof … and chimney that appear in the 1920s photographs and that are characteristic of the period revival style in Laguna are still there,” according to a March 10 letter from Bill Rihn and Ginger Osborne, presidents of South Laguna Civic Assn. and Village Laguna, respectively. “The form and shape, the framing and foundations of the house also correspond.”

Members of the city’s Heritage Committee said they were saddened by the Coastal Commission’s vote, but not surprised.

“If people don’t do what they’re supposed to be doing to keep the historical character, there needs to be consequences,” Heritage Committee member Anne Frank said.

Code enforcement officers were aware of the exterior demolition, according to a city staff report prepared for the December 2011 Design Review meeting on the matter. Authorities issued a citation to Chase bank, property owner at the time, when the home was in foreclosure.

Even with the remodels, the house was still included in the historic inventory, said Ann Christoph, South Laguna Civic Assn. emeritus board member and a former Laguna Beach mayor.

The Environmental Coalition of Orange County listed the site on the historical inventory in 1981. The city annexed South Laguna six years later, and the property was added to Laguna Beach’s historic inventory in 1991, the Coastal Commission staff report said.

A house can not be taken off the inventory for any reason, said Heritage Committee Chairman Jon Madison, who added that he doesn’t believe the house deserved to be preserved.

Two historians, including one from a peer-reviewed consultant, evaluated the property and deemed it not suitable for rehabilitation because “the property is not historically significant due to compromised integrity issues,” according to a city staff report.

“Why do you hire [a historian] and not go with them,” Madison said. “It didn’t need to go as far as the Coastal Commission.”

It’s rare that the commission hears this type of case, Christoph said.

“Historical preservation is not a coastal issue,” Christoph said. “We made the argument that Laguna Beach is a historically based tourist town. To be able to explain the history of the coast, we need to preserve historical buildings.”

Madison, owner of Madison Square Garden & Cafe, cast the lone dissenting vote in 2011 when the majority of the Heritage Committee recommended the house be restored.

“You can’t save every home, nor should every home be saved,” said Madison, who urges residents to inform the Heritage Committee of homes that fall into disrepair.

“Don’t blame code enforcement,” Madison said.

A historian hired by the city is evaluating all properties in the current historical inventory to ensure that addresses match records and to identify homes that might have fallen into disrepair, Madison said.

While the house can be demolished, Meehan still has to get permits for construction and take into account an appeal of his plans that has been filed with the Coastal Commission.

Meehan wants to build a 4,821-square-foot home, which is larger than the current 2,654-square-foot structure, and 730-square-foot garage. The construction is being challenged by Rihn and resident Mark Nelson.

The appeal, filed in July, claims Meehan needs to have a 5-foot-wide sidewalk along Coast Highway for pedestrians to access public beaches at Camel Point and south of Laguna Royale.

Meehan said he discussed the issue with city staff, and a 5-foot-wide sidewalk would either jut into Coast Highway or, if moved closer to the property, create an overhang that could impede emergency vehicles from accessing the driveway.

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