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Preparing Your House For Sale


When it comes to getting the best price for your house, there might be no higher-profile experts than Drew and Jonathan Scott, the personable hosts of several HGTV series including the long-running “Property Brothers.”

The 38-year-old twins started their real-estate ways while still in college, first leasing out a building to fellow students and then flipping a house for a $50,000 profit a short time later. They’ve put the lessons they’ve gleaned from nearly 20 years of buying, renovating and selling homes into their first book, “Dream Home: The Property Brothers’ Ultimate Guide to Finding & Fixing Your Perfect House.”

“Everybody always thinks that their house is nicer than the one that just sold for more money,” said Drew, a licensed Realtor. (Jonathan is a licensed contractor.) “But the fact of the matter is, most homeowners are blind about the flaws in their home. Which is why you have to value using professionals who will step back and give you an honest opinion.”

Here are the Scotts’ five top tips for getting your home ready to sell:

Read full article here:


Posted by on Jun 24, 2016 in Jim's Take on the Market, Thinking of Selling?, Tips, Advice & Links | 0 comments

San Diego’s Pending Index Rises

pending index

Work with an agent who is well-versed in handling multiple offers!

Pending home sales in Southern California as a whole rose 5.6 percent from May 2015 and 2.4 percent from April, thanks to year-over-year gains of 6.9 percent in Los Angeles County and 6.2 percent in San Diego County. Orange County experienced a 1.8 percent decrease from the previous year.

In a separate study, California REALTORS® responding to C.A.R.’s May Market Pulse Survey reported slower growth in floor calls, listing appointments, and open house traffic, reflecting slowing market activity. Despite the lagging indicators, the percentage of properties selling above asking price reached an all-time high and the number of offers per property rose.

• The share of homes selling above asking price in May increased to 38 percent, the highest level since the survey began, rising from 32 percent in April. Conversely, the share of properties selling below asking price dropped to 34 percent. The remainder (27 percent) sold at asking price.

• For the homes that sold above asking price, the premium paid over asking price declined for the third straight month to an average of 9.4 percent, down from April’s 9.6 percent and up from 8 percent in May 2015.

• The 34 percent of homes that sold below asking price sold for an average of 10 percent below asking price in May, down from 12 percent in April and up from 7 percent a year ago.

• Nearly seven of 10 properties for sale received multiple offers in May, indicating the market remains competitive. Sixty-five percent of properties received multiple offers in May 2015.

• The average number of offers per property increased to 3.1 in May, up from 2.9 in April and 2.8 in May 2015. The increase in the number of offers was driven by a greater share of transactions that received three or more offers. Moreover, homes priced between $200,000- $399,000 and $750,000-$999,000 saw the greatest increases in three or more offers compared to a year ago.

• About one in four (23 percent) properties had price reductions in May, indicating sellers are pricing their homes more realistically. One-fourth of properties had price reductions in May 2015.

Posted by on Jun 24, 2016 in Jim's Take on the Market, Market Buzz, Market Conditions, Why You Should Hire Jim as your Buyer's Agent, Why You Should List With Jim | 0 comments

Existing Home Sales, May 2016

existing home sales

The national cheerleaders get excited about every nugget of data, and are happy to jump to conclusions.  Yunnie is finally tip-toeing around the downsizing trend that we see everywhere around here, but he can’t assume that those sellers are buying too:

“The May gain over April signals that the real estate market has maintained strong momentum all spring,” says chief economist Jonathan Smoke. “We are now in this year’s peak home buying months, and this pace of sales should produce the gains we have been forecasting that will make 2016 the best year of home sales in a decade.

The biggest challenge to prospective buyers right now is tight supply, which we have seen for 45 consecutive months. In these conditions, home values have strong support, but potential buyers will continue to face challenges finding a home for sale that meets their needs. That is why we’re seeing the age of inventory drop dramatically while prices have gone up 5 percent over the last year and are now at record nominal levels.”

Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist, says existing sales continue to hum along, rising in May for the third consecutive month. “This spring’s sustained period of ultra-low mortgage rates has certainly been a worthy incentive to buy a home, but the primary driver in the increase in sales is more homeowners realizing the equity they’ve accumulated in recent years and finally deciding to trade-up or downsize,” he says. “With first-time buyers still struggling to enter the market, repeat buyers using the proceeds from the sale of their previous home as their down payment are making up the bulk of home purchases right now.”

Adds Yun, “Barring further deceleration in job growth that could ultimately temper demand from these repeat buyers, sales have the potential to mostly maintain their current pace through the summer.”

The local NSDCC sales in May built on the momentum from April, and the 2016 three-month total looks very similar to last year (865 vs. 859):

Monthly Detached-Home Sales, Carlsbad to La Jolla

March Sales
April Sales
May Sales
Median SP
Avg $/sf
Median $/sf



Posted by on Jun 23, 2016 in Jim's Take on the Market, North County Coastal, Sales and Price Check, Spring Kick | 0 comments

Real Estate Goes Hollywood

This was the best of the 40+ house videos on this guy’s YouTube channel – and the only one from San Diego (the others were corny).  This condo sold for $2,330,000 in 2014, after selling for $3,000,000 when new in 2007:

Splurging on glossy renderings is so early aughts; now, the hottest sales tool for a luxe NYC crash-pad is a custom-made mini movie. And the Scorsese of selling homes is Curt Hahn, the Tennessee-based owner of Film House. This seasoned film vet turned his movie-producing skills to moving houses four years ago, at the suggestion of a real estate-agent friend.

It’s given Hahn’s four-decade career in movies, commercials and concert films (where he’s worked with Candice Bergen, Garth Brooks, Reba McEntire and Isaac Hayes) a new twist. He now shoots and edits at least one such “home video” somewhere in the country each month; budgets run around $20,000 per shoot, and each is painstakingly scripted and cast.

For a museumlike home more suitable for a family without young kids, Hahn’s mini movie featured a childless gay couple, which helped seal the deal with their real-life counterparts. When tasked with selling an eight-figure ski lodge in Telluride — “the kind that one-tenth of the 1 percent could afford” — Hahn imagined a CEO keen on creating a family hideaway.

So he scripted the story of a father soothing his mirror-image, workaholic daughter with a trip to the grand lodge, during which the entire clan surrendered their cellphones. The lodge quickly sold to a wealthy family, as planned. “It so resonated that we’ve now done several versions of that storyline for other homes,” Hahn notes.

He explains that several factors have driven the domestic-movie boom. Staging, of course, effectively transforms ordinary homes into movie sets. The prevalence of social media has made video an ideal (and shareable) selling tool. And the globalization of high-end buyers has been crucial.

Indeed, one couple spent $1.4 million on an apartment without ever visiting in person. Recalls Hahn: “They told me, ‘We watched that movie at least 25 times, we know where every stick of furniture we own is going to go.’”

Posted by on Jun 23, 2016 in Jim's Take on the Market, Listing Agent Practices | 0 comments

How to Become a Real Estate Agent


Last month there were 3,419 houses and condos sold in San Diego County. There are more than 10,000 agents!

Every month, over 14,000 people Google “how to become a real estate agent,” and consider joining the 2 million real estate licensees in the U.S. And for good reason: Helping people buy the perfect home or make tons of money selling their house is exciting! Not to mention the rather enticing fact that real estate can be a lucrative field.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, real estate agents make an average of $45,610 per year—and the top 10% tier of agents earned a whopping $166,940 in 2015.

“We can make as much money as doctors and lawyers, and they spend tens of thousands of dollars on their degrees,” says Rae Wayne, a Realtor® with the Bizzy Blondes team in Los Angeles.

Still, buying and selling real estate isn’t as easy as it might look. And it’s a notoriously tough industry for newbies; some real estate experts like industry vet Tom Ferry estimate that 87% of all new agents fail within the first five years.

All of which means you should carefully weigh the risks and rewards of joining this profession. Just so you know what you’ll need to invest in terms of time and money upfront, here’s how to become a real estate agent.

Read full article here:



Posted by on Jun 22, 2016 in Jim's Take on the Market, Realtor, Realtor Training | 2 comments