Is now a bad time to buy in Santa Cruz County Real Estate Market?  

First, your timing on buying a home can be variable or fixed. If it’s fixed, book your trusted advisor call with us so we can collaborate to create the best strategy for your home purchase. With a knowledgeable advisor who is a skillful communicator and a high-level negotiator, you can optimize your buying experience. If its variable, well, you might want to be patient, especially if you are all cash or have a large down

19 Oct 2022

Will the market drop in 2023?

Fannie Mae sure thinks so.  They expect home prices to fall next year. As the Federal Reserve policymakers struggle with inflation, Fannie Mae’s predictions are: National home prices to decline by 1.5 percent in 2023, and home sales predicted to fall by 21 percent. While the fight to control inflation by tightening the monetary policy continues, the slowing effect on the housing market of the higher mortgage rate environment is predictable and evident. Prices are

11 Aug 2022

Who Moved My Cheese?

 “Will the housing market crash?” (Question asked more now than ever on Google) The actual issue now is not are we in a downtrend real estate market, it’s how long will it last and how intense will it be?You are probably wondering: Will it turn around soon?Well, it is possible - though likely a unicorn event, and I don’t see a lot of unicorns on the street.If you are frozen with fear, that’s path to

24 Nov 2021

City of Capitola: Vacation Rentals Ordinance (November 2021)

The City of Capitola has been impacted by an increase in tourism along the Central Coast, and property owners are pursuing the opportunity to transition their homes into vacation rentals. Before jumping in, however, residents need to familiarize themselves with the City of Capitola’s rules and regulations regarding new and existing vacation homes.

24 Nov 2021

City of Santa Cruz: Vacation Rentals Ordinance (November 2021)

Due to the city’s growth in popularity over the years, investors and homeowners are looking to leverage their primary, secondary, and investment homes by renting them out to tourists. However, this increased popularity has led to more city regulations. Anyone considering turning their home into a vacation rental needs to keep the following information in mind.

24 Nov 2021

Santa Cruz County: Vacation Rentals Ordinance (November 2021)

Located along California’s Central Coast, approximately 70 miles south of San Jose, Santa Cruz County enjoys a $1.1 billion annual tourism industry. Its beautiful beaches, stunning trails, and family activities bring visitors from all around the globe. As a result, more homeowners are interested in turning their properties into vacation rentals! Before venturing down this path, however, it is essential for people to understand what is permitted regarding vacation rentals in Santa Cruz County. Santa

19 Jul 2021

Exercising Care and Caution with Cash-Out Financing

In 2020, the United States witnessed a real estate phenomenon. Interest rates dropped, home prices rose, and U.S. homeowners pulled out nearly $185 billion from their homes' equity through cash-out refinancing, representing the highest amount of equity pulled out since 2007. However, analysts are now warning homeowners to be cautious when pursuing a cash-out refinance. Here's why.

16 Jul 2021

California Moratorium on Evictions Extended Until September 30, 2021

We recently wrote about the numerous moratoriums implemented by varying levels of government, including both federal and state agencies. The situation has continued to evolve, and governments are responding. Mostly recently, on June 28, 2021, California Governor Gavin Newsom signed legislation, AB 832, extending the state’s eviction moratorium through September 30, 2021 and providing debt relief for “Californians that have suffered economic hardship due to the pandemic.”

19 May 2021

Vacation Rentals Permitted for Summer 2021 (Santa Cruz County): An Update on the COVID Restrictions

As we enter the summer of 2021, many COVID-19 restrictions are easing up, vaccines are widely available, and Americans are breathing a sigh of relief. It's nearly vacation season, and Santa Cruz County is becoming a hot spot for prospective travelers. This year, the season brings especially good tidings for homeowners: according to the county guidelines, travel restrictions and the moratorium on new vacation rentals have been lifted! As a result, property owners in Santa

19 May 2021

CDC Eviction Ban Ruled Unlawful: What Does This Mean for Californians?

When the pandemic hit, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) foresaw widespread financial hardship for Americans and established a moratorium on evictions. For the past seven months, that order has fueled a battle between the Alabama Association of Realtors and the United States Department of Health and Human Services. According to the Alabama Association of Realtors, the CDC overstepped when it extended renter protections to include non-federally-funded rental housing. The moratorium order prohibits

12 Apr 2021

CDC: National Eviction Moratorium EXTENDED Until June 30

With the noble intention of containing the spread of COVID-19, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently announced an extension of the order banning residential evictions. The original order, titled Temporary Halt in Residential Evictions to Prevent Further Spread of COVID-19, was set to expire on March 31, 2021, as outlined in President Trump's $900 billion relief package, but will now be in effect until at least June 30, 2021. What does the

12 Apr 2021

American Home Values Hit an ALL-TIME High

This past year has seen a surging real estate market – home prices have continued to climb as Americans navigate the ever-changing dynamics of the pandemic. A recent report released by Realtor.com shows that, on a national level, median home listing prices in March 2021 were $370,000 – 15.6% higher compared to the year prior (March 2020). Prices in the largest U.S. metro areas “grew by an average of 12.1% year-over-year with some markets seeing

19 Mar 2021

Proposed New Rules Could Create Restrictions on Housing Development in Santa Cruz County

The State Board of Forestry and Fire Protection recently proposed new regulations that could drastically affect landowners in Santa Cruz County, more specifically, those impacted by the CZU Lightning Complex fires that burned in Northern California starting August 2020.

16 Mar 2021

The Climate Crisis Could Pose Hikes to Homeowners Flood Insurance Costs

Flood risk is not often top of mind for potential home buyers, real estate agents, insurance companies, and creditors. That may change thanks to a new study that examines the potential financial impact to homes due to flood risk, a topic that has garnered more and more attention due to global warming. In recent years, we have faced ongoing challenges related to the climate crisis. Climate change has caused weather patterns to shift across the

1 Feb 2021

California Lawmakers Extend Relief to Vulnerable Tenants Until June 2021

California's most vulnerable tenants may continue to stay afloat during the pandemic, thanks to recent actions taken by the state legislature. On Thursday, January 28, 2021, California lawmakers approved the use of $2.6 billion in federal stimulus money to pay off up to 80% of income-qualified tenants' unpaid rent. Governor Gavin Newsom is expected to sign the legislation into law. The solution directly responds to the challenges many renters still face today, nearly one year

20 Nov 2020

Prop 19 Just Passed in California: What Does This Mean for Homeowners?

California Proposition 19, the Property Tax Transfers, Exemptions, and Revenue of Wildfire Agencies and Counties Amendment, was recently approved by a 51.1% majority vote. Now, many homeowners are wondering how they will be impacted as we move into 2021. Let’s take a closer look! A YES on Prop 19: The Impact on Homeowners Proposition 19 was on the ballot in California as a legislatively referred constitutional amendment directed at changing specific property tax rules. Here

20 Nov 2020

Looking Deeper: Will the tide soon turn in our booming real estate market?

Since 2011, the residential real estate market has been steadily climbing. Housing prices have increased year-over-year in most major markets, with the housing medium rising 55% over the last decade (June 2010 to June 2020). This bullish market has proven beneficial to investors and homeowners across the country. However, as a result of the 2020 market, some analysts predict that 2021 may experience a significant shift. We may be transitioning to a bear market as

13 Oct 2020

Hempcrete: The Future of Home Construction

Historically speaking, construction materials have predominately consisted of concrete, steel, wood, and brick. However, when the Hemp Farming Act of 2018 was passed on December 20, 2018, builders worldwide began to familiarize themselves with a new material deemed the eco-friendly material of the future: Hempcrete. What is Hempcrete? Hempcrete is a unique bio-composite material comprised of the hemp hurds, a mineral binder (lime), and water. When blended, "a chemical reaction occurs between the lime binder

9 Oct 2020

Fall 2020: California is Still a Seller’s Market

Annual market trends can be somewhat predictable; transaction velocity spiking in Spring and Summer and slowing through Fall and Winter results from children returning to school and adults returning to their routines.  However, this year has witnessed a change; due to the global pandemic, we have experienced a year like no other. As a result, recent reports by the National Association of Realtors and Realtor.com concluded that this Fall and its subsequent months would remain

8 Oct 2020

How to Reduce the Spread of Wildfires: A New Study Identifies Cattle Grazing as the Newest Solution

California has had one of its most devastating years in terms of wildfires, with rampant fires spreading across the state for weeks. In 2020 alone, there have been an estimated 8,320 wildfires, 31 fatalities, 8,687 structures damaged, and over 4 million acres burned. Politicians, researchers, environmentalists, and public safety experts have been brainstorming on how to change the course that California has been witnessing over the last few years – They are trying to identify

8 Sep 2020

Transaction Velocity Continues to Rise, Especially with Larger Homes

Recent analysis has revealed that even in the midst of the pandemic, the housing market is thriving. According to the National Association of Realtors, total existing-home sales, including single-family homes, townhomes, condominiums and co-ops, rose by 24.7 percent from June to July, and sales as a whole rose 8.7 percent year-over year. In fact, their analysis concluded that it was the sharpest monthly sales gain recorded since 1968 (the year NAR began collecting housing data). Lawrence

8 Sep 2020

9 Ways to Improve your Offer on a Home

Earlier this year we started to witness an increase in transaction velocity for homes across the county. This was a direct result of the Fed cutting rates, which ultimately provided Americans a chance to purchase a home at a historically low interest rate.  When the pandemic swept the globe a short time later, analysis predicted that velocity would slow down as a result of two factors: 1) People fearing the impact of the virus, and

19 Aug 2020

Game Changers in the Real Estate Market – Pending Evictions

COVID-19 has taken the United States by storm, impacting every aspect of the American people’s lives: Businesses have been forced to close their doors; millions of individuals have lost their jobs; and over 100,000 Americans have lost their lives to the virus. Government aid, in the form of federal unemployment and moratoriums on eviction, has been a much-needed lifeline to many who have been hit the hardest. However, it is now August 2020, and as

14 Jul 2020

Demand for High-End Homes Remains Prominent Amidst Pandemic

The last six months has been a whirlwind of events, all impacting the real estate market in different ways. Earlier this year, the Fed cut rates to nearly zero, driving millions of Americans to pursue new home acquisitions or refinance opportunities. However, shortly after, as the pandemic spread across the globe and stay at home orders were established, the transaction velocity of properties came to a halt. Fast forward two months and the trends are

17 Jun 2020

What Does “Green Living” Really Mean, and Why Should I Know About It?

Over the last few decades, the concept of green living has been on the rise. It first gained popularity in the subcultures of environmentalists and hippies, who were dedicated to changing the systems by which they live in order to better reflect their beliefs and values. Early adopters of green homes, for example, focused on developing their own energy sources, composting their waste, and reducing the pollution created by their environments. However, as knowledge of

17 Jun 2020

Post Pandemic Buying Trends

The real estate market is one of many industries that have been impacted by the coronavirus. In some local markets, especially the densely-populated ones, transactions have all but halted as people learn to cope with the fear and economic uncertainty resulting from the pandemic. However, in other communities, such as in Santa Cruz County, real estate transactions have remained constant as people began seeking new homes in more remote areas to prepare for the changes

11 May 2020

Will Auctions Be the New Normal for Luxury Homes in the Future?

As COVID-19 swept across the world, the industry of real estate took a major hit. Stay-at-home restrictions prevented realtors from showing homes, and the disruption in the economy created uncertainty for both home buyers and home sellers. Although the data is not yet in for the United States, it is apparent that COVID-19 caused a major decline in transaction velocity. More is known about the effects in the eastern hemisphere, where the virus first hit