Santa Cruz Real Estate

Found 842 blog entries about Santa Cruz Real Estate.

Many people think that Santa Cruz real estate agents have it pretty easy.  Once they start investigating, however, they find that being an agent is a difficult and time consuming job.

Real Estate Training
All states, including the District of Columbia, require agents to be licensed which requires hours of training and test taking. 

Depending on the state, you need between forty and ninety hours of specific coursework. 

Once the coursework is completed, you have to pass a state exam on real estate law and practice.  In most states, an agent then has to find a real estate broker to work with.

To become a broker and be able to manage their own brokerage, Santa Cruz real estate agents have to gain experience.  This means more coursework, as well as a

1,198 Views, 0 Comments

All the talk is about how the President's stimulus plan helps out new and first time home buyers.  The good news is that it also helps homeowners.  You can get stimulus plan benefits from your existing Santa Cruz real estate too.  Add a little green living to your environment and you'll be pocketing some change at the end of the year from your income tax return.

Under the stimulus plan, both eco-friendly new home purchases and eco-friendly improvements on existing homes are tax deductible. Now's the time to make your home more energy efficient and get a break at the end of the year for your efforts.

Going green saves money, makes your living environment healthier, and improves the world we live in. To reap the benefits from the stimulus plan, you can

6,804 Views, 0 Comments

The new stimulus bill gives first-time home buyers a tax credit of $8,000! Whether the Santa Cruz real estate you purchase is new or a re-sale there are always things you can do to make improvements. Here are a few ideas on how you can use the tax break for your new home.

• Put in all new appliances. $8,000 will buy a nice set of kitchen and laundry appliances, and enough groceries to fill up that new refrigerator for several months on top of it.

• Furnish a room. Many times a new home means old furniture just won't fit in or fill it up. $8,000 goes a long way to decorating a new room or two.

• Put on a porch. The stimulus money can be used to add value to your Santa Cruz real estate by making additions like a patio or porch. It will make your new home

1,020 Views, 1 Comment

Today’s home buyers have a big advantage over buyers from a decade ago:  the internet. You can search for homes for sale online as well as find pricing data and instructions on how to buy a home.  So, why would you possibly want to hire a Santa Cruz real estate agent to help you buy a home?

Here are four surprising and not-so-surprising reasons why hiring a Santa Cruz real estate agent will save you time and money when buying a home:

1. Paperwork - Today's real estate contracts run 10 pages or more, and will take you hours to read, comprehend, process and file. One miniscule mistake or omission could land you in court or cost you thousands.  Experienced agents handle the paperwork and legal issues for you, minimizing your hassles, headaches and

954 Views, 0 Comments

There are great incentives for first-time Santa Cruz real estate buyers. Big tax incentives and money put into the banking and financing industries to give buyers more availability to loans makes now the best time to move when looking for a home. This environment won't last—exactly. Some of the elements put in place are geared toward a strong future for the housing market, but many of the advantages are only good for now.

Tax Relief

First-time Santa Cruz real estate buyers, meaning those who have not owned a home in the past three years, are eligible for a big tax break on income taxes. Next year at tax time all buyers have to do is report the new home purchase to get $8,000 dollars back. That's a big incentive. The drawback is it’s only good for this

955 Views, 0 Comments

I heard someone earlier this week say that the housing market has gone from a slow crawl to a brisk walk.  I think that is the perfect metaphor to explain the recent changes in the real estate market.  The market is coming back.  It’s not roaring, but it’s coming back.
 
This week, according to Reuters.com, U.S. mortgage applications jumped as record low interest rates spurred a surge in demand for home refinancing loans.  The Mortgage Bankers Association said its seasonally adjusted index of mortgage applications, which includes both purchase and refinance loans, increased 32.2 percent to 1,159.4 for the week ended March 20.  Refinancing accounted for 78.5 percent of all applications.
 
Furthermore, interest rates on mortgages fell after the Federal Reserve

2,107 Views, 0 Comments


If you are thinking about putting up your Santa Cruz home for sale, you may start to look around the house with an eye for increasing its value.  Here are some inexpensive things you can do to increase the value of your home:

The Kitchen
When buyers walk through a Santa Cruz home for sale, one of the first places they look is the kitchen.  A well put together kitchen is a big plus, so make sure it looks clean and up-to-date. 

• Replace old lighting fixtures with brighter, more energy-efficient ones.
• Replace the old kitchen faucet set to something more modern and clean.
• Add new cabinet doors and drawer handles.
• Reface your cabinets – this takes a little more time and money to do, but the results can be outstanding.  Or, you could order replacement

1,394 Views, 0 Comments

The stimulus, the stimulus—it is hard to go to a news site or blog now without seeing something about the stimulus plan, good or bad. The one thing that seems to be a common thought is everybody hopes it works whether they like the plan or not. There are many ways the stimulus plan might affect Santa Cruz condo buyers and sellers.

Buyer Incentive

The biggest boon to both buyers and sellers is the proposed tax break for any first-time buyer purchasing a home (including condos) in 2009. That last part is the one down point in the plan. Homes must be purchased in the current year, retroactive to the beginning of 2009, and ending December 31st. That should, however provide a decent impetus to get things moving again. While it is short lived, it could boost

1,013 Views, 0 Comments

Are you considering buying your first home?  I'm sure you already know that now's an amazing time to buy your first home.  You have the perfect combination of low interest rates, low Santa Cruz home prices and President Obama's stimulus plan which gives you additional incentive to buy now.

To help make your first time Santa Cruz home buying experience the best it can be, here are some tips:

1) Know What You Can Afford

It is easy to get carried away with what you want versus what you can actually afford. Start with reasonable expectations.

2) Decide Exactly What You Need

Consider your current family status and what your immediate future might hold, then decide on the number of bedrooms you require and the amenities you feel you can't do without. If

1,347 Views, 0 Comments

Today’s slow real estate market is a hard place to sell Santa Cruz homes. However, the fact remains that homes are still being bought and sold.  Buyers are out there; you just have to attract them to your home.

Here are a few tips for getting Santa Cruz homes sold in a slow real estate market:

Prepare for the Sale
Your home needs to stand out from the rest. Give it a lot of sparkle and shine:

• Make minor repairs:  Patch holes, fix faucets and replace cracked tiles.
• Clean inside and out:  No cobwebs, dirty carpets, worn rugs or smelly odors.
• Check your curb appeal:  Mow the lawn, plant flowers, trim bushes, etc.
• Remove clutter and de-personalize:  If it isn’t essential, pack it up or get rid of it.
• Straighten your cabinets and closets:  Buyers

1,046 Views, 0 Comments