Irvine Real Estate News

 

June 3, 2019

The Ultimate Truth about Housing Affordability

 

There have been many headlines decrying an “affordability crisis” in the residential real estate market. While it is true that buying a home is less affordable than it had been over the last ten years, we need to understand why and what that means.

On a monthly basis, the National Association of Realtors (NAR), produces a Housing Affordability Index. According to NAR, the index…

“…measures whether or not a typical family earns enough income to qualify for a mortgage loan on a typical home at the national and regional levels based on the most recent price and income data.”

Their methodology states:

“To interpret the indices, a value of 100 means that a family with the median income has exactly enough income to qualify for a mortgage on a median-priced home. An index above 100 signifies that family earning the median income has more than enough income to qualify for a mortgage loan on a median-priced home, assuming a 20 percent down payment.”

So, the higher the index, the more affordable it is to purchase a home. Here is a graph of the index going back to 1990:

The Ultimate Truth about Housing Affordability | MyKCM

It is true that the index is lower today than any year from 2009 to 2017. However, we must realize the main reason homes were more affordable. That period of time immediately followed a housing crash and there were large numbers of distressed properties (foreclosures and short sales). Those properties were sold at large discounts.

Today, the index is higher than any year from 1990 to 2008. Based on historic home affordability data, that means homes are more affordable right now than any other time besides the time following the housing crisis.

With mortgage rates remaining low and wages finally increasing, we can see that it is MORE AFFORDABLE to purchase a home today than it was last year!

Bottom Line

With wages increasing, price appreciation moderating, and mortgage rates remaining near all-time lows, purchasing a home is a great move based on historic affordability numbers.

The information contained, and the opinions expressed, in this article are not intended to be construed as investment advice. Keeping Current Matters, Inc. does not guarantee or warrant the accuracy or completeness of the information or opinions contained herein. Nothing herein should be construed as investment advice. You should always conduct your own research and due diligence and obtain professional advice before making any investment decision. Keeping Current Matters, Inc. will not be liable for any loss or damage caused by your reliance on the information or opinions contained herein.
Posted in News
May 23, 2019

4 Most Popular Bottom Line Investments in America

Irvine real estate

Every year, Gallup surveys Americans to determine their choice for the best long-term investment. Respondents are given a choice between real estate, stocks, gold, and savings accounts.

For the sixth year in a row, real estate has come out on top as the best long-term investment! That has not always been the case. Gallup explains:

“Between 2008 and 2010, covering most of the Great Recession period that saw plummeting home and stock values, Americans were as likely to name savings accounts or CDs as the best long-term investment as they were to name stocks or real estate.”

This year’s results showed that 35% of Americans chose real estate, followed by stocks at 27%. The full results are shown in the chart below.

is irvine real estate a good investment

If you're one of the many people asking yourself "is Irvine real estate a good investment", I think the answer is clear above. As everyone's real estate goals and situation is different Let's discuss.

Now that the real estate market has recovered, so has the belief of the American people in the stability of housing as a long-term investment.

Posted in News
May 1, 2019

The Woodbridge Real Estate Market, (Irvine, CA)

15 Fallbrook - a Creekside listing

There are 42 Woodbridge homes currently listed for sale, up from 37 at the beginning of last month. 

Prices range from $429,900 all the way up to $1,988,000. Included in these numbers is my 15 Fallbrook listing, (in the Creekside tract).

  See all Woodbridge homes for sale.

South Lake Woodbridge

There are 746 properties for sale elsewhere in Irvine.  

For info on any listing, call or text me on 949-232-5634 or shoot me an email.

29 Woodbridge homes are in escrow, (Pending or Backup Offers status), at an average list price of $776,989.

 

20 Woodbridge homes sold in April 2019, at prices from $459,800 for a 2-bedroom, 2-bath attached condo at 27 Firwood in the Village Green neighborhood, to $1,563,000 for my 79 Limewood listing, a 4-bedroom, 3-bath detached Single Family Residence in the Landing II neighborhood.

79 Limewood in Landing 2, Woodbridge

My 2 Laurelglen listing is another Landing II home which sold in April.

2 Laurelglen in Landing II

 

Posted in News
April 8, 2019

Some things to think about when choosing your Irvine home to retire in.

As more and more baby boomers enter retirement age, the question of whether they should sell their homes and move has become a hot topic. In today’s Irvine housing market climate, with low available inventory in the starter and trade-up home categories, it makes sense to evaluate your home’s ability to adapt to your needs in retirement.

According to the National Association of Exclusive Buyers Agents (NAEBA), there are 7 factors that you should consider when choosing your retirement home.

1. Affordability

“It may be easy enough to purchase your home today but think long-term about your monthly costs. Account for property taxes, insurance, HOA fees, utilities – all the things that will be due whether or not you have a mortgage on the property.”

Would moving to a complex with homeowner association fees actually be cheaper than having to hire all the contractors you would need to maintain your home, lawn, etc.? Would your taxes go down significantly if you relocated? What is your monthly income going to be like in retirement?

2. Equity

“If you have equity in your current home, you may be able to apply it to the purchase of your next home. Maintaining a healthy amount of home equity gives you a source of emergency funds to tap, via a home equity loan or reverse mortgage.”

The equity you have in your current home may be enough to purchase your retirement home with little to no mortgage. Homeowners in the US gained an average of over $9,700 in equity last year. In Irvine the number is much larger!

3. Maintenance

“As we age, our tolerance for cleaning gutters and raking leaves can go right out the window. A condominium with low-maintenance needs can be a literal lifesaver, if your health or physical abilities decline.”

As I mentioned earlier, would a condo with an HOA fee be worth the added peace of mind of not having to do the outside maintenance work yourself? Of course you’d still need a gardener or have to take care of your own yard yourself.

4. Security

“Elderly homeowners can be targets for scams or break-ins. Living in a home with security features, such as a manned gate house, resident-only access and a security system can bring peace of mind.”

As scary as that thought may be, any additional security is helpful. An extra set of eyes looking out for you always adds to peace of mind.

5. Pets

“Renting won’t do if the dog can’t come too! The companionship of pets can provide emotional and physical benefits.”

Consider all of your options when it comes to bringing your ‘furever’ friend with you to a new home. Will there be necessary additional deposits if you are renting or in a condo? Remember many Irvine landlords don't even allow pets. Is the backyard fenced in? How far are you from your favorite veterinarian?

6. Mobility

“No one wants to picture themselves in a wheelchair or a walker, but the home layout must be able to accommodate limited mobility.”

Sixty is the new 40, right? People are living longer and are more active in retirement, but that doesn’t mean that down the road you won’t need your home to be more accessible. Installing handrails and making sure your hallways and doorways are wide enough may be a good reason to look for a home that was built to accommodate these needs.

7. Convenience

“Is the new home close to the golf course, or to shopping , movies and dining? Do you have amenities within easy walking distance? This can add to home value!”

How close are you to your children and grandchildren? Would relocating to a new area make visits with family easier or more frequent? Beyond being close to your favorite stores and restaurants, there are a lot of factors to consider.

Bottom Line

When it comes to your forever single-level Irvine home, evaluating your current house for its ability to adapt with you as you age can be the first step to guaranteeing your comfort in retirement. If after considering all these factors you find yourself curious about your options, let’s get together to evaluate your ability to sell your house in today’s market and get you into your dream retirement home!

Posted in News
April 3, 2019

Looking to Upgrade Your Irvine Home? Now’s the Time to Move-Up!

The kitchen/family room in one of Debbie Sagorin's listings

In every area of the country, homes that are priced at the top 25% of the price range for that area are considered to be Premium Homes. In today’s real estate market there are deals to be had at the higher end! This is great news for homeowners who want to upgrade from their current house and move-up to a premium home.

Much of the demand for housing over the past couple years has come from first-time buyers looking for their starter home, which means that many of the more expensive homes that have been listed for sale have not seen as much interest.

This mismatch in demand and inventory has created a Buyer’s Market in the luxury and premium home markets according to the ILHM’s latest Luxury Report. For the purpose of the report, a luxury home is defined as one that costs $1 million or more.

“A Buyer’s Market indicates that buyers have greater control over the price point. This market type is demonstrated by a substantial number of homes on the market and few sales, suggesting demand for residential properties is slow for that market and/or price point.”

The authors of the report were quick to point out that the current conditions at the higher end of the market are no cause for concern. 

“While luxury homes may take longer to sell than in previous years, the slower pace, increased inventory levels and larger differences between list and sold prices, represent a normalization of the market, not a downturn.”

The spa at 233 Downs Road - listed by Debbie Sagorin

Luxury can mean different things to different people. It could mean a secluded home with a ton of property for privacy to one person, or a penthouse in the center of it all for someone else. Knowing what characteristics you are looking for in a premium home and what luxury means to you will help your agent find your dream home.

Bottom Line

If you are debating upgrading your current house in Irvine to a premium or luxury home, now is the time!

Posted in News
March 4, 2019

March 1st Woodbridge Irvine Market Report

There are 37 Woodbridge homes currently listed for sale, up from 34 at the beginning of last month. Prices range from $440,000 all the way up to $1,988,000. Included in these numbers is my 79 Limewood listing, (in Landing II).

See all Woodbridge homes for sale.

There are 660 properties for sale elsewhere in Irvine.  

18 Woodbridge homes are in escrow, (Pending or Backup Offers status), at an average list price of $859,610.

14 Woodbridge homes sold in February 2019, at prices from $479,000 for a 2-bedroom, 1 bath attached condo at 25 Smokestone in the Park Vista neighborhood, to $1,150,000 for 17 Springwood, a 3-bedroom, 2 bath attached townhouse in the Grove neighborhood.

 

Posted in News
Jan. 14, 2019

You Shouldn't Fall For This Catch

With the speedy growth of online tools, companies are speedily building products to serve the real estate community. After all, home buying and selling will always be a thing. It's a it’s a lucrative industry, even if it does slow down from time to time.

Sagorin & Associates is here to make YOU the most money

Companies around the world are diving in to make as much money off consumers as possible. 

What are they selling? The ease. The ease of buying or selling a home online. The catch? Buyers & sellers actually don’t benefit from these online quick-sale services. In fact, they could find themselves out of tens-of-thousands in cost difference.  

If you’re in the market to buy or sell a home in Irvine, and are considering foregoing a real estate agent for an online service, be sure you read the fine print. You’ll often times find that you aren’t benefiting at all. Will they buy your home upfront to resell it, so you don’t have to worry about the headache? Sure, but you may have been able to get $100,000 more for your house using a Realtor like Debbie Sagorin. Can you see and purchase your dream home through said services and “save” on agent commissions? Sure, but you’ll probably be overpaying for the home anyway.

The real estate industry is heavily regulated for licensed professionals to ensure the consumer is always getting the best representation for the best savings. Many of these online services don’t require regulation and licensing, therefore, they can get away with fine print “scams.” 

Although I am a Zillow Premier Agent, I must say that online services like Zillow and Trulia disrupt the real estate business. In my opinion, one thing remains certain - home buyers and sellers will always trust a human over a machine, especially if that person is chock-full of local knowledge and genuinely eager to help. 

Be sure you do your research. A Realtor is there to make YOU the most money. Quick online services are focused on making their business the most money - not focused on how much you can sell your home for or how much you can save when you buy. Licensed professionals exist for a reason, be sure you don’t lose more than you can afford to by using a gimmicky online service that dubs buying and selling an “easy” process.

Any good agent will make the process easy, minus general lending issues that may arise.   

Posted in News
Feb. 5, 2018

What's Been Happening in Woodbridge Irvine?

In just two weeks, Orange County housing demand has increased 22% while supply has only increased 2%.

When the supply of homes is low and the demand to buy homes is high, the expected market time falls. That is exactly what is occurring right now. This week escrow closed on my 119 Greenmoor listing which sold with multiple offers, after only 6 days on the market. And it sold for 10% higher than the list price!

 

A week after it went into escrow, I listed another Greenmoor home, (in the Laurels neighborhood), and it too sold after just a few days, with multiple offers, and is currently in escrow.

 

I expect the high demand to continue, mainly because historically more buyers come out after the SuperBowl.

 

There are 15 Woodbridge homes currently listed for sale, up from 14 at the beginning of January. One of them is 10 Woodflower, my gorgeous 4-bedroom Landing II listing with a magnificent salt-water pool. It is listed at $1,600,000. See some photos and more info at this link.

 

There are 309 properties for sale elsewhere in Irvine. See all Woodbridge homes for sale.

 

For info on any of these, shoot me an email, or call me at 949-232-5634.

 

21 Woodbridge homes sold in January 2017, at prices from $492,000 for a 2-bedroom, 1.5 bath attached condo at 18 Rosemary in the Villager neighborhood, to $1,230,000 for 2 Lakeknoll, a 3-bedroom, 2.5 bath detached condo with a great lake view, in the Crossing neighborhood.

 

21 Woodbridge homes are in escrow, (Pending or Backup Offers status), at an average list price of $804,209.

Posted in News
Dec. 29, 2017

My Happy New Year Video :)

Wishing all my real estate clients, family and friends, a very happy and prosperous New Year, and all the best for 2018. Enjoy!

 Right now, 276 properties are listed for sale in Irvine, with prices ranging from $265,000 all the way up to $20,900,000.

 Every Irvine real estate listing can be seen here.

Posted in News
Nov. 2, 2017

The Buyers are Out Now. THAT'S Why Sell NOW Instead of Later.

Each year, most homeowners wait until the spring to sell their houses because they believe that they can get a better deal during the normal spring buyer’s market. However, recently released data suggests that a seller’s best deal may be available right now. The concept of ‘supply & demand’ reveals that the best price for an item will be realized when the supply of that item is low and the demand for that item is high. 

Let’s see how this applies to the current Woodbridge residential real estate market.

23 Woodbridge homes sold in October 2017, at prices from $445,000 for a 2-bedroom, 1.25 bath attached condo at 85 Greenfield in the Alders neighborhood, to $1,150,000 for 21 Fairdawn, a 4-bedroom, 2.5 bath detached SFR in the Landing I neighborhood.

SUPPLY

It is no secret that the supply of homes for sale has been far below the number needed for over a year. A normal market requires six months of housing inventory to meet the demand. The latest report from the National Association of Realtors (NAR) revealed that there is currently only a 4.2-month supply nation-wide. It's much less in Woodbridge.

There are 23 Woodbridge homes currently listed for sale, down from 27 at the beginning of October. There are 375 properties for sale elsewhere in Irvine.  See all Woodbridge homes for sale.

Supply is currently very low!!

DEMAND

A report that was just released tells us that demand is very strong. The most recent Foot Traffic Report (which sheds light on the number of buyers out looking at homes) disclosed that there are more buyers right now than at any other time in the last twelve months. This includes more buyers looking at homes right now than at any time during last year’s spring market.

25 Woodbridge homes are in escrow, (Pending or Backup Offers status), at an average list price of $713,740.

Demand is currently very high!! 

In a nutshell, while waiting until the spring to list your house for sale made sense in the past, NOW IS DIFFERENT. The best deal is probably available right now.

Posted in News