All Blog Entries by Lauren Spencer

Found 1,010 blog entries published by Lauren Spencer.

No matter what age you are, buying a home is always one of the most exciting times in your life. If you’ve been in your current home for several years, it’s probably been while since you purchased your last home. This is where many Baby Boomers are at nowadays; the kids are all grown up with families of their own, and it just doesn’t make sense to keep maintaining a large home anymore. Whether you’re looking to downsize or move into your dream retirement home, there are a few things about buying a home in 2016 that might be different from the last time you entered the market.

Start Your Home Search Online

Years ago, the first step to buying a home was to hire a real estate agent, because back then it was seemingly impossible to find the right

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Summer is just around the corner, and as the flowers bloom and the end of the school year draws near, the idea of spending time on the patio instead of inside is growing more enticing with each passing day. If you’re longing for the days of entertaining guests or just wish that you could have ‘that patio’ that’s the envy of all your friends, then take note of these great tips for getting your patio ‘decked out’ for the summer.

Get Creative With Your Outdoor Space

Regardless of your budget, it’s easy to take your patio living experience to the next level. Something as simple as painted palettes, colorful chairs, a few throw pillows, and a refinished dresser, can be just the thing your backyard needs to enhance the beauty of what living in Santa Cruz

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Memorial Day events in Santa Cruz

Memorial Day is the weekend Americans wait for all year as it is the official start of the summer vacation season. We all know that means days at the beach, backyard barbecues, and plenty of outdoor activities.

Santa Cruz kicks off the weekend in style with a number of events to enjoy. Depending on your taste, there is something for everyone to enjoy. Come out to any of the events being held in the area this Memorial Day weekend and kick off the summer season in style. The following are some of the highlights of the holiday weekend.

The Santa Cruz American Music Festival

The second annual Santa Cruz American Music Festival kicks off at 11 am Saturday, May 28th and Sunday, May 29th, running until 7pm each day. The festival is being held at

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Good things happen when private and public interests come together to achieve a shared vision. A partnership formed between The Land Trust of Santa Cruz and Santa Cruz Bicycles has resulted in a $500,000 donation by the bike company to help fund new trail development in the San Vicente Redwoods area. Adding more trails will not only create more places for the bike manufacturer’s clientele to enjoy their quality cycles, but it also opens up the land for everyone to enjoy. In the end, it’s a win-win for the entire outdoor community.

What More Trails Means For Santa Cruz Residents

The Land Trust of Santa Cruz County outlined a plan for building 45-miles of mixed-use, environmentally concious trails through the region of San Vicente Redwoods, which

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When you're searching for a home, it can be hard not to be attracted to a foreclosed home. They're often a great price and some are located in desirable neighborhoods, but don't be so quick to jump at the opportunity. Here are a few things you should know before you commit to buying a foreclosure property.

Types Of Foreclosure Properties

There are four stages of a foreclosure sale, and knowing the difference between them could help protect you as a buyer.

  • Pre-foreclosure or short sale: With these ones, the current owner still has control over the property and will vacate when the home has been purchased by a buyer. The advantage to this type of sale is that the home is still sold as-is, but buyers can opt for an inspection before the
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Best Realtor Santa Cruz CountyLauren Spencer has been voted as the Best Realtor In Santa Cruz for 2016 by popular local publication, Good Times Magazine. What makes this award even more special is that you, the residents of Santa Cruz County, decide the winners with your votes. This isn’t the first time that Lauren has been included on this list. She also won the award in 2012 and 2014, and was a runner-up in 2013 and 2015. Lauren’s brokerage, Coldwell Banker, also won the award this year for Best Real Estate Agency.

Good Times has been in publication for over 40 years, and releases a new “Best of Santa Cruz County” list every year with categories covering food and drink, arts and culture, music and nightlife, shopping and services, community life, and health and recreation. Some

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Gardening isn’t just a therapeutic hobby with lucrative results, it’s also a fantastic way to spruce up your backyard, get active, and enjoy the summer sun. Spring is officially here and it’s the perfect time to start the planning process for your garden. Whether you’re looking to sell soon or are just wanting to spruce up your space, these tips can help you get the garden of your dreams and boost the value of your home.

Backyard Landscaping Can Boost Curb Appeal

Although the backyard isn’t necessarily visible from the front of the home, it’s still nice to peer out the back window and see an inviting space where you can enjoy all of the wonderful sunshine California receives. If you’re thinking about selling your home, it’s not just important, it’s

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Mortgage tips for first-time buyersBuying your first home is one of the most exciting purchases you’ll make in your life, but before you start to comb through the listings to find the home of your dreams, you’ll need to find out how much you can borrow. If the idea of buying a home is even minutely interesting to you, it’s never to early to get your financials in check so that when the time comes, there’s nothing to hold you back.

Here are some tips from some national mortgage pros to help you be mortgage-ready when the time comes to buy a home in Santa Cruz County.

Clean Up Your Credit Score

Your credit score and history are two of the biggest factors that lenders consider when processing your mortgage eligibility. Before you apply for your mortgage, request a free credit report

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How to buy your first homeThe Santa Cruz real estate market is still simmering from its red-hot year in 2015. Prices remain high, inventory is low and the demand for homes is still remarkably high. So where does that leave first-time homebuyers? With rental prices at an all-time high, it may be time to ask yourself the tough questions. Are you ready to buy a home? Can you picture yourself spending the next few years here? Are you financially and mentally ready to commit? If you can honestly answer those questions with a yes, then you’re nearly halfway there.

1) Ask All Of The Questions

Ask your friends, family, coworkers, web forums, industry professionals, essentially everyone and anyone you can to find out more about things like financing, the buying process, home

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Valentines Day Santa Cruz date ideasRetail shelves are stocked with chocolate, florists are in a frenzy, and love is in the air. Valentine's Day is just around the corner, and what's better than showering your partner in gifts of chocolate, jewelry, or flowers, is the gift that can withstand the test of time — making great memories together.

If you haven't already started planning your romantic adventures, here are a few ideas to keep things fun and spontaneous this Valentine's Day in Santa Cruz.

For The Thrill-Seeking Duo

Take your sweety on a sky-high adventure at The Boardwalk, where all rides are on sale at 2-for-1 this weekend. Cling to each other in the Fright Walk, strike up some friendly competition over a round of mini golf, and watch as the sun sets over the ocean from

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