Proposition 13 Tax Transfer Initiative

The Proposition 13 Tax Transfer Initiative will be on the ballot in November.  If passed, it will give those 55 and older the ability to take their old property-tax basis with them, no matter (a) the new home’s market value; (b) the new home’s location in the state; or (c) the buyer’s number of moves.  But the tax basis will be subject to a re-calculation, depending if the new home is more or less expensive.

The California Association of Realtors is also pursuing a legislative alternative that will eliminate intergenerational transfers of primary residences and other inherited property being used for income-producing purposes without reassessment.

The kids and grandkids have enjoyed taking over their elders’ homes – and their typically ultra-low tax basis that transferred.  The state legislature could change that in August, which would bring in additional revenue to compensate for those seniors taking their old tax basis with them.

Click on Read More below for details:


Olivenhain ‘Plantation Estate’

The old wood-shake roof didn’t get in the way of this one selling, and though it is horse property, there weren’t really any actual horse facilities.  But it had three major hot buttons; single-story, detached 1-bedroom guest house, and 720sf man cave. This is the second time in three years that it sold for at least $2,400,000 (this cash sale did include a $60,000 credit for repairs):

Redfin Wants Link Back to Listing Agent

The thing that got me fired up was Glenn insisting that portals include a mandatory HTML link back to the listing agent (in fact, Redfin authored the new verbiage to be approved by N.A.R.).

The current rule is that the listing agent has to be mentioned, and Redfin includes the requirement in fine print at the bottom of each listing.  On the right, they pitch you hard to tour the home with them, which I’ll live with.  It’s their website, and if I don’t like it, I can always build my own.

Why does Glenn want the listing agents to get more exposure?

He says that if there is a link back to the listing agents, they will be more likely to input more listings onto the MLS, instead of ‘pocketing’ them.

He doesn’t supply any evidence to support such an idea, and it is unlikely that the listing agents who want to double-dip the commission will give it up easily.  This idea only makes sense as an alternative if we are going to eliminate pocket listings, Coming-Soons, and Sold-Before-Processings.

But nobody is suggesting an end to those techniques.

Since Zillow legitimized the Coming-Soon in 2014, major real estate brokerages and even some MLS companies have followed suit and offer their listings on their website prior to MLS exposure to the open market.  The Coming-Soon genie is out of the bottle, and adding a link back to the listing agent isn’t going to change it.

Is Glenn just an out-of-touch CEO hoping to befriend the industry?  No, he’s not, and we’ve seen previously that he has the killer instinct.  He said this HERE:

“I think he had no idea what kind of savage beast master he was dealing with,” Kelman said.  He continued: “We are wild, freaking animals. You can’t sell more houses for less money any other way. You’ve got to fight and claw for it.”

He owns one of the major portals. If he thinks putting an HTML link back to the listing agent is a good idea, then he should do it himself on Redfin’s website to demonstrate his commitment, and see how it goes.

But he hasn’t done that, which makes you think he is up to something else.  Just like everyone else in the industry, he wants to double-dip more of his own listings, so he can finally put that nickel in his investors’ pocket.

Opendoor is Deceitful

In the video below, a Las Vegas realtor compares an actual offer from Opendoor to what happened when he put the home on the open market.

But it’s the deceit that is note-worthy.

The first number supplied by Opendoor was the average market time, which they said was 75 days for the zip code.  But the actual MLS data showed 22 days, and then the agent sold this house the first day on the market.

Opendoor also packed an extra 2% in costs for seller concessions when selling with a realtor, which is untrue.  Buyers don’t ask for concessions in our pricer market, let alone in Las Vegas when houses are selling over list price.

No surprise that flippers use the lowest comps they can find – that’s expected.  But they also stack enough other false evidence that, in the end, is what sways the seller to go that route.

Opendoor’s final estimate twisted the numbers to show that the seller would make $11,000 more money by selling to Opendoor, rather than listing with an agent.  But the client actually cleared $15,416 more with a realtor!

Flippers have no obligation to tell you the truth – they say whatever they want. Get a second opinion!  If timing is an issue (quick closings are one of the big benefits they push) – then I will give you a quote today, and get you into escrow as fast as you need.

Link to video:


Redfin is Deceitful

Glenn Kelman of Redfin has been deceiving the public since the day they started the company, and he gets away with it because we don’t have a watchdog department or any enforcement of truth-in-advertising.  We live in a society where anybody can say anything and never be accountable to the truth.

I’ve had enough, and I’m not going to take it any more.

Here are examples:

  • He says Redfin agents sell houses for $3,000 more than traditional agents.  But you can only measure that if we sold the same house on the same day!  He is using averages of different sets of homes, which is apples and oranges – yet it was one of their featured statements on their website for a long time.
  • He says that his sellers save $9,000 over traditional agents.  You can say you charge a lower rate, but you can’t calculate the actual savings until you have the sales price.  Agents don’t sell houses for the same price – houses sell for different prices depending on the agent’s method and expertise.  If I sell the house for $10,000 more than you, then the sellers would MAKE an extra $1,000.  It is deceitful for him to make such claims.
  • He says you will ‘close without a hitch’. A Redfin agent told me yesterday that 100% of his deals have a hitch.
  • He says they are full service.  But then you send out the $50 girl with the least experience of anyone on your team to show buyers around?  If you are ‘full service’, then you should have your BEST agents showing homes.
  • His home-flipping device, Redfin Now, is the biggest conflict-of-interest in the history of real estate.  With Zillow’s Instant Offers, at least they send their staff people to give you a quote to purchase your home, and then direct an independent agent to give you a second quote.  But Redfin offers the whole package together.  But you can’t have it both ways – either you advertise that you are a full service realtor, and thus have a fiduciary duty to get the best deal possible for the seller, OR you are a cash buyer.  But they run their flipping platform off their same website.

They know it’s a conflict too, and have a disclaimer at the bottom of the page:

Can you read print that small?  Me neither, so I got out my magnifying glass.

This is what it says:

Redfin Now is a separate company owned by Redfin.  Agents representing Redfin Now represent Redfin Now only and do not represent sellers in the sale of your home.  If you decide to sell to Redfin Now, neither Redfin nor Redfin Now will represent your interests regarding the sale of your home. For this reason, it is recommended that you seek independent representation in the sale of your home.  You may be able to sell your home on the open market for more money than Redfin Now’s offer price.

People who are drawn to a ‘full-service realtor’ website should get a fiduciary consultation only – that is what’s in their best interest.  If you are running a separate company that buys homes, then it should be on a separate website.

  • The latest is Glenn saying that portals should include links that direct the consumer back to the listing agent.  He says that it will encourage listing agents to stop ‘pocketing’ their listings, and sell them on the open market instead.  But Redfin does the ‘Sold Before Processing’ to their sellers too, so you can’t help but think Glenn has an ulterior motive.

He has lost millions of dollars every quarter since they started 13 years ago – it seems like he will say anything to try to catch up.

Consumer beware!



For an industry that has been stagnant and mostly unaffected by disintermediation/disruption over the last couple of decades, you get the feeling that change might be afoot now.

It’s asking a lot, but what we really need is transparency.

We are at the fork-in-the-road where agents and consumers alike want and need to choose between the traditional model of selling homes, or one of the newfangled disrupter ways.

But the services being offered are blurry.  The disrupters call themselves realtors, and say they provide the same full service.  Big teams say because they’ve sold so many homes that their way is the best.  Individual agents get caught in the middle somewhere.

If every agent described exactly what they do to earn their fee, then at least the consumers might be able to compare apples-to-apples.

Every agent has their 100-point marketing plan, a fabulous support team, and is in the Top 1%.  Let’s go beyond those basics.

To make it easier for consumers, let’s boil it down to the most important part of the equation – what is the one critical question to ask an agent?

‘Who and where are you at the point of sale?’

The frenzy has simmered down, and we’re back to the regular hand-to-hand real estate combat in the streets.  This is when buyers and sellers need real and effective guidance on when to make the deal.

If you choose a discounter, inexperienced agent, or get stuck with an assistant, you will get a tepid response.  Their lack of experience at guiding you to make the right decision when everything is on the line will cause them to be conservative, and not commit.  You will be left to your own devices.

When you choose a great agent, he delivers facts and opinions for you to use to make the right decision on the spot – that is real guidance.

This is where consumers need the real help, but the industry fails miserably because when you need us most, we’re not there.  We don’t insist on having top-quality help in place at crunchtime.

It hasn’t mattered in the full-blown frenzy – buyers just pay the price or higher, and everyone is happy.  You don’t need much help then.

But now that sales are receeding, and more homes are lying around not selling, real help is needed to figure out what to do.

Sellers are always prone to add a little mustard to their price, and without proper guidance on when to accept a lower offer or when to reduce their price, they can miss the selling window and chase the market down.  Buyers can pay too much and regret it later, or not enough and miss out on a good match.

Get Good Help!

Kayla’s Trendy Tuesday

My absolute favorite color in the world is BLACK. Yes, I love bright and happy colors too but black is classic, chic, and can go with anything. I not only like wearing black, but I also like to use it when it comes to the household.

Now I know some of you are probably thinking “OMG what the heck?! Black is so depressing and just too dark for my home.” Yes this can be true, but it is how you use the color and for what items.

Matte black these days has become increasingly popular. With the matte finish, it tones it down while also keeping the drama of the color. Now I’m not saying you should paint your whole house black! But there are ways you can introduce it into your home without going overboard.

Here are some items that I think would look awesome in a home!

1. Flatware – The detailing on the handle is so fabulous:

Link to BB&B

2. Dinnerware – I like this one especially because it is two-toned!

Link to Wayfair

3. Table Lamp – Another two-toned item, very mid-century:

Link to West Elm

4. Wall Art – If you’re not ready to paint your whole wall black, try out a good ol’ black and white photo!

Link to W&S

6. Freestanding Bathtub – This tub is SO chic!

Link to Home Depot

7. Tumbler – This would go great with your new black bathtub!


Happy Tuesday everyone!

– KK

San Diego Case-Shiller Index, April

The non-seasonally-adjusted San Diego Case-Shiller Index had another strong reading for April, setting a new all-time high!

San Diego Non-Seasonally-Adjusted CSI changes:

January ’17
January ’18

The previous peak was 250.34 in November, 2005. We are 2% above that now, thanks to inflation.  This year is starting off much like 2017, and we can probably expect the SDCSI to cool down in the second half of the year.

“Home prices continued their climb,” said David M. Blitzer, managing director and chairman of the Index Committee at S&P Dow Jones Indices. “Cities west of the Rocky Mountains continue to lead price increases with Seattle, Las Vegas, and San Francisco ranking 1-2-3 based on price movements in the trailing 12 months. The favorable economy and moderate mortgage rates both support recent gains in housing.”

“However, if one adjusts the price movements for inflation since 2006, a very different picture emerges,” noted Blitzer. “Only three cities – Dallas, Denver, and Seattle – are ahead in real, or inflation-adjusted, terms. The National Index is 14 percent below its boom-time peak and Las Vegas, the city with the longest road to a new high, is 47 percent below its peak when inflation is factored in.”

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