I have saved hundreds of live-music youtubes over the years and it’s time for a year-end clearout. I try to play music on Wednesday nights but fall asleep half the time, and other times I play them on Tuesday by mistake. So hardy har har, 2020, these are the best of what I have left – starting with the sultry goddess of rock:
Margo Timmins (born January 27, 1961) is the lead vocalist of the Canadian band Cowboy Junkies. She is the sister of Michael Timmins, the band’s lead guitarist, and Peter Timmins, the band’s drummer. Her ethereal vocals, paired with the band’s spare and low-key instrumentation played at a relaxed pace, lend the band its unique atmospheric sound.
A candle burning for everything I’ve ever wanted
A tattoo burned for everything I’ve ever wanted and lost
I had a long list of names that I kept in my back pocket,
but I’ve cut it down to one and your name’s at the top
Won’t you share a common disaster?
Share with me a common disaster
A common disaster
I found myself a friend,
but he’s crooked as a stick in water
So now I’m writing fairy tales
to catch the spirit of revenge
He’s got a plan to steal my little sister,
but I’m not too concerned
’cause I will get him in the end
Won’t you share a common disaster?
Share with me a common disaster
A common disaster
Going to find me someone to share
A common disaster
Run away with me from a life so cramped and dull
Not worry too much about the happily-ever-after
Just keep the Caddy moving
’til we’re well beyond that hill
Won’t you share a common disaster?
Share with me a common disaster
A common disaster
This looks like a dramatic drop-off in showings but we are still 160% above where they were last year, and way above where they were in February. If there were just more homes for sale!
We got off to a hot start in 2020, and you can see how showings in January of this year picked up immediately compared to November, 2019. Let’s compare the December showings over the next few weeks to give us a feel for how fast the market will get started next year!
In eight out of the last nine weeks, we’ve had more new pendings than new listings!
Today’s counts are 27 new listings vs 60 new pendings, but the Thanksgiving tallies are always low. Last December, we had 178 listings between La Jolla and Carlsbad, so we should still see some life in the market over the next couple of weeks.
The big difference is that the last bubble was built on the backs of the the under-qualified borrowers who took exotic mortgages from unscrupulous loan brokers. The bad loans were funneled to Wall Street, where the same thing happened – the Tan Man took advantage of greedy but unknowing financiers and the combined effect exposed the house of cards. Without the end users making their payments, the machine came to a grinding halt.
Could it happen again?
Because mortgage underwriting has been strict over the last ten years, it’s hard to imagine that a wave of homeowners loaded with equity would get foreclosed – and then the banks would give them away too.
But it is possible that we could have mild swings of 5% to 10%. But if there were a couple of low sales, wouldn’t the lower-motivated sellers just wait it out? Probably.
Here’s a recent example we can follow – I think we can call this a low sale:
1756 Skimmer Ct., Carlsbad, CA 92011
4 br/2.5 ba, 2,409sf one-story with 3-car garage on a 10,041sf lot.
LP = $1,328,000 on September 10, 2020
SP = $1,000,000 on November 17, 2020.
The home had been on the market for a couple of months and it was time – the seller was ready to move! My buyers offered the right price, on the right day, and the seller signed it.
It’s a classic example of finding a long-time owner who could sell for less and still walk away with a bucketful of money. The seller paid $430,000 when the home was new in 2001. They didn’t put in any upgrades then or now – it was the original carpet and paint, etc., they made no attempt to improve the property for sale:
The thing to appreciate about this home is that it backs to dedicated open space, where the other side of the street backs to Poinsettia, a four-laner which will soon be connected to the I-5 off-ramp about a mile away. My buyers benefit from easier access but no noticeable road noise!
New bridge in red
The last two sales of this model were $910,000 and $935,000 in 2017 (does anybody want to pay within 10% of 2017 prices today – yeah!). The last sale on this street was a newly-built 3,380sf home at the end of the street that sold for $1,380,000 in August. It was in the shadow of the power lines, and backed to El Camino Real/Poinsettia intersection with substantial road noise:
Here are the one-story homes sold in the last six months – they average $533/sf, and we closed at $415/sf:
Yes, I’m tooting my own horn for being the agent who recognized that this home was languishing on the market, had an original owner and would be a candidate to sell for less.
But will I be the villian who started the Big Downturn in the 92011? No, every other one-story-home seller nearby will shrug this off and list for at least $500/sf in the foreseeable future.
I agree that homes selling quicker – evidenced by the lower market times – means crazy price increases. Sellers can get away with pricing their home at 5% to 10% above comps and buyers still come running.
How crazy is it?
More than half of our sales are finding their buyer in 14 days or less!
NSDCC November Sales
Total # of Sales
Sales with <14 DOM
% of Sales <14 DOM
Let’s also note that by the time we’re done, there will be close to 300 sales this month, which is unheard of for November!
Two downtown residential condominium buildings with a mixture of market-rate and affordable housing, ground-floor commercial space and underground parking got the go-ahead for construction last week from the Carlsbad City Council.
The Carlsbad Station project will cover 1.76 acres of the city block between State and Roosevelt streets, north of Grand Avenue and a half-block walk from the Carlsbad Village train station. The site includes several different lots with eight buildings constructed between 1947 and 1981, some which are occupied by long-time tenants such as Hennessey’s Tavern that could resume business in the new structures.
The two four-story buildings will include 79 residential condominiums ranging from 14 one-bedroom units, each with 747 square feet, to four four-bedroom units, each with 2,877 square feet. Twelve of the condos will be reserved for occupants who qualify for affordable housing and will be indistinguishable from the market-rate condos. Four commercial units will occupy the ground floor, and the underground parking will have 143 spaces.
Frontage along Roosevelt and State streets will get new curbs, gutters, sidewalks, bike racks, street trees and landscaping.
The City Council voted 3-1 Tuesday to approve a tentative tract map and site development plan for the project, with Councilwoman Cori Schumacher opposed. Schumacher said the city should be “more prescriptive” with its affordable housing requirements, such as specifying whether the affordable condos should be for sale or for rent. City officials said those details will be determined later.
Mayor Matt Hall and a number of long-time Carlsbad residents praised the project.
“You truly went far and beyond,” Hall said of the applicant McKellar McGowan, a San Diego real estate development firm. “I like the architecture and that you will bring back some existing tenants.”
Parts of the two buildings will be set back from the street to make them appear less tall than they really are. The side facing Roosevelt will only have three stories at the street, and the side facing State will only have one floor at the street, with the upper three stories set back 50 feet. A pedestrian promenade will connect Roosevelt and State streets between the two buildings.
Several speakers said the project is an example of “smart growth,” in which more dense residential development with affordable homes is built near public transit, jobs and services.
“This is exactly where a mixed-income project should be located,” said Angeli Calinog , a policy manager for the nonprofit public transit advocate Circulate San Diego.
“This is one of the best projects we’ve seen in many, many years, and the first one to use the new Village and Barrio Master Plan,” said Gary Nessim, a Carlsbad Village business owner. “It fits the community very nicely.”
While all the speakers at the council meeting supported the project, a few residents wrote letters in opposition.
“It’s sad to see major developments taking over our beach town,” wrote lifelong resident Adam Faringhy. “I beg of the City Council to slow their pace and consider saving some of our local landmarks.”
Others said the project would increase traffic congestion and force out more small businesses.
But most were in support, including Christine Davis, executive director of The Carlsbad Village Association, a nonprofit that promotes business and culture in the Village.
“While a large project, it has been thoughtfully broken into smaller pieces to blend into our downtown environment,” Davis wrote.
What a difference compared to the second half of 2019:
San Diego Non-Seasonally-Adjusted CSI changes:
If we can sustain the monthly 1.8% increase x 12 = 21.6%.
This index is a three-month running average, so it represents prices from July through September, when buyers were eagerly seeking homes with more space for working and schooling at home due to the coronavirus.
“Housing prices were notably – I am tempted to say ‘very’ – strong in September,” said Craig J. Lazzara, managing director and global head of index investment strategy at S&P Dow Jones Indices. “This month’s increase may reflect a catch-up of COVID-depressed demand from earlier this year; it might also presage future strength, as COVID encourages potential buyers to move from urban apartments to suburban homes. The next several months’ reports should help to shed light on this question.”
Phoenix, Seattle and San Diego continued to see the highest annual gains among the 19 cities (excluding Detroit) in September. Home prices in Phoenix rose 11.4% year over year, followed by Seattle with a 10.1% increase and San Diego with a 9.5% increase.
Health, unemployment, stairs, taxes, finances, politics…….selling your home is becoming the answer for everything!
More than 2.5 million American homeowners have stopped paying their mortgages, taking advantage of penalty-free forbearance periods offered by lenders.
What happens when the free pass fades away next year?
Not much, and certainly nothing approaching the flood of foreclosures that defined the Great Recession, according to the emerging consensus among economists. While some homeowners are sure to feel the pain of forced sales, housing experts increasingly expect the end of forbearance to be a non-event for the gravity-defying housing market.
That’s largely because home prices have risen sharply during the coronavirus pandemic. As a result, homeowners who find themselves unable to pay their mortgages when their forbearance periods end likely will be able to sell for a profit, rather than going into foreclosure.
“If they have equity, they can always sell off the house and pay the mortgage,” says Ralph DeFranco, global chief economist at mortgage insurance company Arch Capital Services. “It’s not a great outcome, but it’s less terrible than letting the bank take it and sell it.”
The values of nearby condos should benefit greatly from the housing shortage around UCSD: http://enewspaper.sandiegouniontribune.com/infinity/article_share.aspx?guid=5997c243-aa01-4fdd-96f6-d71d8fd7f25a - As numbers boom, UCSD embraces its more social side
Jim the Realtor is legit - I interviewed three brokers; he said list price should be $100,000 higher than the other two brokers; listed it with him and had all cash (no financing) offer in two days, five day contingency period, closing in two weeks - and it closed at his recommended list price. I could not recommend anyone more than I recommend Jim the Realtor.
When we moved to San Diego in 2005 we rented a big house on Mt. Soledad (La Jolla) with 180 degree ocean views for the same payment as a mortgage on a dump in Chula Vista. Clearly something was wrong. Yet, the media was full of the usual happy-talk nonsense, so I was glad to find Jim's blog. I've followed his honest assessments and data since.
We decided to sell and move to AZ at Thanksgiving. Dec. 1st we met with Jim to sell our home. We closed today (29 days later). Jim orchestrated a feeding frenzy -- we had 25 showings in 2-1/2 days, multiple offers, and sold for well over asking price. I'd say he earned his commission! We have owned and sold homes in 5 different States always using experienced, productive, full-time realtors. Jim outshines them all.
You don't decide to sell and close 29 days later over Christmas (with COVID lockdown) without some miracles. Donna was amazing at performing lots of those miracles and ensuring that everything was done right and on time. They are a terrific team with a very responsive and professional network.
Where do we begin..2020 has been a year for everyone. When COVID hit and shut down both my husband and my businesses, we were left with a mortgage and very little income coming in. We were stressed, scared and felt stuck. We made the hard decision to sell our home and move out of state. We contacted the Klinges' and spent a good hour going over what we hoped we could accomplish. Jim and Donna came over with comps in hand and suggestions on improvements to get our house ready for the market. It was overwhelming to think about, but Donna was there and one step ahead in every scenario. Basically we just approved what they suggested and Donna handled literally everything. We placed our house on the market and within the first day we had multiple offers well above asking price! We couldn't believe it. We were overjoyed! Jim countered the offers to weed through them, and everyone came back with way more. It was amazing, and we are ?? sure it was because of the staging and repairs the Klinges suggested we do.
Due to unforeseen dishonesty from the buyers lender, we hit a big hurdle when trying to close. We had already moved out of state and were shocked when three days before closing the lender dropped a bombshell on the buyers and us. However, Jim and Donna handled it like veterans, not afraid to play hard ball and represent their clients. After a few phone calls with us, and several between Donna and the lender, they had a plan B-Z to make sure we were taken care of. In the end we closed with even more money than we ever thought possible and with very little work from us. The Klinges handled this entire "2020" worthy event with the utmost professionalism and did everything in their power to not only make this as smooth as possible for us, but we also walked away with more money from the sale of the house than we ever hoped for. After working with Jim and Donna, you don't ever use anyone else. They are hands down the best team to represent you in any scenario.
Working with Klinge Realty Group was a great experience! They are very responsive, professional and knowledgable about the real estate market! I would definitely recommend Klinge Realty Group.
Jim and Donna Klinge made the sale of our condo extraordinarily easy. They know the market and gave us sound advice backed by details and very considerable experience, reflected both in the initial pricing and subsequent negotiations. They work together as a team and are always available to talk. We had a few challenges with our property and they were able to coordinate the resolution to everything, including items that I would not think would ordinarily be their responsibility to handle. They made the whole process effortless on our part. They are folks with high integrity and we cannot recommend them highly enough.
Review for Member: Donna Klinge
I cannot believe there are no reviews of Donna yet, ugh!! She is the secret sauce of the Jim Klinge/Donna Klinge combo! I will touch on Jim here, but Donna is why I'm so totally loyal to these two (no offense to Jim :)).
I consider myself a rather savvy buyer/seller. I've bought/sold 7 times in about 15 years. On the buy side, Jim is the PERFECT combo of: completely digitally savvy (he will pull data all day long until you feel comfortable with your chosen house, area, school district, anticipated appreciation rate...anything!), he's super well respected and known in the area by other agents, an amazingly cool but strategic negotiator, is totally devoid of desperation for a sale/commission, and more.
Then once you get into contract phase, Donna literally handles every last and final detail in a concierge-like manner -- totally shielding you from the daily back and forth, noodling and annoyances of the buyer's requests. She solves it ALL; it's miraculous what that woman accomplishes over and above what is even expected in a buy/sell transaction.
On the sell side, Jim and Donna do the same, but even moreso. Donna in particular truly takes everything off your plate: she'll manage getting the house painted, the carpets replaced, she'll go on site (as she Jim both did for me when selling our rental properties) to work with the renters and make sure the house is ready to show -- freeing me to have to take time off of work to do so. They work with A+ integrity, too, so you know you are serving all parties fairly and lawfully throughout.
A home purchase/sale is the most considered you'll ever make. HIRE A SAVVY AGENT, not a friend!, and get what you need out of the transaction. Jim and Donna are our agents for life.
Jim and Donna Klinge are by far the most professional, personable and responsive realtors I have ever worked with. They provide VIP concierge level service in every area of the process of selling your home. My home was marketed so successfully that we received an offer the day after our first and only open house. Thanks to Jim's pricing and negotiating, our house is now the highest sold in our community. Jim's vast experience means he has worked with several realtors and knows the market all over north county. Donna is AMAZING in processing everything in the transaction. She scheduled trades people to work on the house in preparation for the sale as well as the repairs needed before closing. She communicated clearly every step of the way about what would be happening. She took the weight off my shoulders for the whole process. I will always use Jim and Donna for my future real estate needs and I whole heartedly recommend them to anyone buying or selling a home.
Jim and the team at Klinge Reality are without a doubt the best in the business! Not only was Jim helpful and extremely knowledgeable, he was patient and determined to help me find my first home. Jim and his team have been in the business for many years, and it shows. Jim is a wealth of knowledge and was my biggest proponent despite the temperature of the competitive market. I ended up getting the perfect property in my dream neighborhood all thanks to Jim. From the day my offer was accepted, Donna was a real lifesaver. She was extremely helpful, responsive, and knowledgeable when it came to every minute detail, and held my hand through the process. As a first time home buyer I had no idea what the process would entail, but Donna curtailed every concern I came across and made the escrow process feel seamless. Jim and Donna provided me the best home buying experience, and I am very grateful for all they did for me. It was truly a pleasure to work with Jim and Donna and I am already looking forward to the next time we work together!
Review for Member: Richard Morgan
Richard is an amazing realtor! He has high integrity and genuinely cares about his clients and their needs. Richard paid close attention to what I was seeking in a home and was very patient in our search to find it. I would highly recommend Richard and will use him for future transactions. Truly a different kind of realtor experience!
Could not be happier with my experience with Jim and his team. He helped me sell a very unique and challenging property. Throughout the entire process he was always available, honest, transparent, trustworthy, and always put my interests as a seller first. A (rare) true professional! During close of escrow Jim went above and beyond to complete the deal. It would not have been possible without his experience, fantastic team, and pure dedication. Highly recommended!
Thanks Jim and Donna Klinge!