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Aug. 1, 2012

Point Loma, not only a great place to live, but a great place to visit too!

point loma

Point Loma is a hilly peninsula bordered on the west and south by the Pacific Ocean, on the east by the San Diego Bay and by the San Diego River to the north.  Point Loma separates San Diego Bay from the Pacific Ocean along with the Coronado peninsula.
 
This beach community is only 20 minutes from Downtown San Diego, the Gaslamp District, Balboa Park and Mission Valley.  Point Loma and Point Loma Heights are full of residents who enjoy the seaside community life.   With its rich history, beautiful landscape, incredible sunsets and so many housing options to choose from.  Home prices range from $300,000 to several million depending on location, size and condition.
 
Liberty Station, located in the heart of Point Loma, was originally a Naval Training Center site.  The first recruits arrived in 1923 and San Diego military history was born.  The first few buildings constructed on site included barracks, a mess hall, the dispensary, a fire station and the guards' quarters.  During the World War II years of 1941-1945, the Naval Training Center continued to grow to accommodate the need for sailors. History states that in September of 1942, the population reached nearly 33,000, the most that the station would ever see.
 
With San Diego being home to more than a sixth of the Navy's fleet, the Naval Training Center has played a key strategic role throughout the last century.  The Point Loma Naval Base is still an active Military Base with submarines, a coast station and a weapons depot.
 
Today Liberty Station is home to many residents of Point Loma.  It's rich with shopping, entertainment, arts and culture, banking, parks and recreation, an abundance of dining options and beautiful homes and condos.  With so many housing choices, there's bound to be one to fit your family's needs.
 
One of the attractions in this beach community is the Cabrillo National Monument.  When you drive up Cabrillo Memorial Drive on your way to the Monument, you'll pass the Fort Rosecrans Military Reserve and National Cemetery.  This awe-inspiring cemetery is lined with perfect rows of grave markers commemorating our soldiers lost in battle.
 
Since the Cabrillo Monument is situated at the top of the hill, it's certainly worth the drive to see the most spectacular views of San Diego Bay, Downtown San Diego and the beautiful Coronado Bay Bridge. There is also a platform near the Monument which makes it easy to view the winter whale migration typically happening from November to March.  If you're lucky, you'll see gray whales pass by in route to their breeding grounds off Baja, California, Mexico.  This has always been an incredible site to see and visitors come from all over.
 
Whether you are a resident of Point Loma or you are a visitor to this seaside community, you'll be glad you were here.

Posted in Point Loma
July 24, 2012

San Diego, One of a kind City

san diego

San Diego is called “America’s Finest City” for many reasons:  Weather, Housing, Beaches, Attractions, Major Sports Teams, Entertainment Venues, an International Airport, Restaurants, Culture and so much more.

San Diego is the second largest city in the state of California, and each year is visited by over 3,000,000 million people.  With attractions such as the world famous San Diego Zoo, it’s no wonder vacationers and residents flock to this popular destination city.  The San Diego Zoo Safari Park (formerly known as the Wild Animal Park) is another attraction located in Escondido, just 40 minutes from Downtown San Diego.  With wild animals roaming free, it’s a great place to take the family.  You can soar on their newly added Zip Line which takes you high over the park.

The climate is so comfortable here that you are likely to find people at the beaches year round.  You can surf, snorkel, ride a kayak, walk the boardwalks, hang out and people watch, swim, or just lay in the sun.  You can even bring your dogs to many of the beaches designated as Dog Beaches (located in Coronado, and Mission Beach).  

While living in San Diego or any of the nearby neighborhoods (some of the neighborhoods include Mission Valley, Mission Hills, Point Loma, Pacific Beach, Clairemont Mesa, Old Town, La Mesa Del Cerro, San Carlos, Coronado, and La Jolla to name a few) you’ll find yourself visiting Balboa Park in Downtown San Diego.  This 1,200 acre urban cultural park is filled with over 15 different museums, multiple gardens, many different types of attractions.  Also in Balboa Park are “live” theater productions where performing arts are at their best.  Balboa Park has recently opened the Titanic Exhibit which takes us all back to that frightful night in history 100 years ago.

Have you been to Sea World located in Mission Bay?  Situated on over 20 acres, Sea World is an animal theme park, an oceanarium, and a marine mammal park all rolled into one.

If you’re looking for a variety of restaurants, you’ve come to the right place.  This great city has so many different restaurants it would literally take you years to dine at them all.  So if you desire Seafood, Fusion, Organic, Cajun, Chinese, Continental, French, Mexican, Argentine, Greek, Hawaiian, Italian, Sushi or simply American cuisine, there is something for everyone.  

Besides all the many activities and attractions, there are so many choices when it comes to housing.  If you are thinking about buying a house in the San Diego area, look no further, there is something for everyone - houses with ocean views, properties with large yards, gated communities, horse properties, condos, single-family homes, multi-million dollar estates, executive homes, custom homes, duplexes and multi family homes.  They are everywhere and all in your price range.

San Diego is definitely a great place to live and visit – now you know why!

Posted in San Diego
July 23, 2012

New Foreclosure Law - California Homeowner Bill of Rights

Have you missed a few payments in the last few months?  Are you thinking about selling your house short (Short Sale) or applying for a loan modification? Are you worried about losing your home?  If you are losing your home, is it going to be foreclosed properly?  Only time will tell.

As a full time Realtor in the San Diego County area, I receive at least 10 calls a week from San Diego homeowners who owe more than they can sell their house for who ask me what they should do.  "Do I keep making payments, do I sell my Chula Vista home short, should I let my Bonita house go into foreclosure, what should I do?"  A lot of people I know are in the same boat.  The good news is that California is doing it's best (I know it can be slow and painful) to protect the homeowners the best it can.

The California Homeowner Bill of Rights is a law designed to protect homeowners and borrowers during the mortgage and foreclosure process (which for most homeowners is a very stressful time in their lives).  The law, which goes into effect on January 1, 2013 allows borrowers access to courts to enforce their rights under this legislation.

Do you know a friend, family member, co-workers or neighbors who have been in the middle of a short sale or loan modification, only to find out the next day their home had been foreclosed and they had no idea??  The law restricts dual-track foreclosures, which is when a lender forecloses on a borrower despite the borrower being in discussions with the bank about a loan modification or short sale to save the home.

It also guarantees struggling homeowners a single point of contact at their lender with knowledge of their loan and direct access to the individual who can actually make decisions.  In addition, homeowners may require loan servicers to document their right to foreclose.  The law also requires banks to clearly explain to those borrowers who are rejected for a loan modification, specifically why.

If you own home and are thinking about selling your San Diego area home, please contact me immediately so I can walk you through the process of how to Short Sale your home or apply for a loan modification.

Just a quick not to all potential San Diego County Buyers - Mortgage rates are under 4%,.  Hurry, now is the time to buy.  The market is begging you to buy.  Most San Diego homes for sale are at a great price and interest rates will NOT stay this low forever!

June 18, 2012

Pacific Beach, a great place to live!

pacific beach homes for sale

Pacific Beach is one of the popular tourist and residential destinations in all of San Dieg County.  Pacific Beach is sourrounded by other great communities such as La Jolla, Mission Beach, Mission Bay and the Pacific Ocean.  The closest freeway is Interstate 5, which makes traveling to Downtown San Diego, the Gaslight District, Little Italy, Old Town and the surrounding areas so convenient.

Pacific Beach is known for its roller blading, walking, biking, and vacationing on its eight miles of scenic beach and bay view boardwalk areas.  These paths afford incredible views of the beach and the bay.  On any given day you will find family picnics, people flying kites, playing Frisbee, volleyball or enjoying a barbequed meal.  It seems there’s always a party on the beach and/or on the boardwalk, especially during the sunny summer months.


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Posted in Pacific Beach
June 13, 2012

San Carlos June 2012 Housing Report

You want to feel good about driving in and out of your neighborhood,  knowing you are located close to good schools, shopping centers, movie theatres, and restaurants?  Then buy a home in San Carlos San Diego.  It’s an older-established beautifully maintained neighborhood that seems to be the perfect place to live for all types of  buyers.  It’s in the center of everything and only takes 15-20 minutes to get “anywhere” – such as the beach, La Jolla, Downtown San Diego, South Bay, Mission Valley, East County, the mountains and anywhere else.

One of the main attractions in San Carlos is Cowles Mountain, which is one of San Diego’s biggest natural features besides the beach.  On any given day or night, hundreds of people are found hiking this mountain which is located in Mission Trails Regional Park.  Hikers climb 1591 feet to the top of the summit on a well maintained trail.  On a clear day, you can see 360 degrees around you and can see the Pacific Ocean to the east and Mexico to the south.  Mission Trails Regional park also contains many miles of hiking, mountain biking and equestrian trails.


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Posted in San Carlos
June 12, 2012

What is Mello-Roos? California Property Tax Information.

What is Mello-Roos?
(California Property Tax Information)

In 1978 Californians enacted Proposition 13, which limited the ability of local public agencies to increase property taxes based on a property's assessed value.  In 1982, the Mello-Roos Community Facilities Act of 1982 was created to provide an alternate method of financing needed improvements and services.

The Act allows any county, city, special district, school district or joint powers authority to establish a Mello-Roos Community Facilities District (a "CFD") which allows for financing of public improvements and services.  The services and improvements that Mello-Roos CFD's can finance include streets, sewer systems and other basic infrastructure, police protection, fire protection, ambulance services, schools, parks, libraries, museums and other cultural facilities.  

You will find a lot of "mello-roos communities" in Eastlake, Otay Ranch, Rolling Hills Ranch and San Miguel Ranch, which are all located in Chula Vista.  By law, the CFD is also entitled to recover expenses needed to form the CFD and administer the annual special taxes and bonded debt.  Another way to say it is....Mello-Roos is a form of financing that can be used by cities, counties and special districts (such as school districts).  Mello-Roos Community Facilities Districts (referred to as "CFD's") raise money through special taxes that must be approved by 2/3rds of the voters within the district.  A CFD is formed to finance major improvements and services within the district which might include schools, roads, libraries, police and fire protection services or ambulance services. The taxes are secured by a continuing lien and are levied annually against property within the district.

Why is a Mello-Roos CFD Needed?

A CFD is created to finance public improvements and services when no other source of money is available.  CFD's are normally formed in undeveloped areas and are used to build roads and install water and sewer systems so that new homes or commercial space can be built.  CFD's are also used in older areas to finance new schools or other additions to the community.

How is the Annual Charge Determined?

By law (Prop. 13), the Special Tax cannot be directly based on the value of the property.  Special Taxes instead are based on mathematical formulas that take into account property characteristics such as use of the property, square footage of the structure and lot size.  The formula is defined at the time of formation, and will include a maximum special tax amount and a percentage maximum annual increase.

How do I pay my Mello-Roos Special Taxes?

In almost all cases Mello-Roos special taxes are levied as part of the annual property tax bill.  You should be able to find your Mello-Roos special tax as a line item on that bill.  In rare cases, a Mello-Roos district will send out its own bill.  To find out more about this bill, you will need to contact the agency directly.

Posted in Real Estate Taxes
June 8, 2012

Chula Vista May 2012 Housing Update

Chula Vista used to be known as just the city near Tijuana but now……………now it’s become a popular destination for many tourists. Chula Vista, which means “Beautiful View” in Spanish, is the second largestcity in the San Diego Metropolitan area with a population of over 250,000.   

Chula Vista is located about 12 miles south of Downtown San Diego and is the 2nd largest city in San Diego County.  Zip codes include 91910, 91911, 91913, 91914, and 91915. The east side of Chula Vista is the most popular with the home buyers.  This area includes communities such as Eastlake Trails, Eastlake Greens, Eastlake Vistas, Eastlake Shores, Eastlake Woods, Rolling Hills Ranch, San Miguel Ranch, Otay Ranch, and Rancho Del Rey to name a few (zip codes are 91913, 91914, and 91915).  Most of these homes were built from 1995 to 2008 and are close to schools, parks, trails, community pools and local shopping.  All are Master Planned Communities designed with families in mind.homes for sale in chula vista

The west side (91910 and 91911) homes were built from 1940-1970 and are traditionally single family one story homes.
 
Currently, there are a total of 211 detached single family homes for sale in Chula Vista ranging in price from $200,000 to $2,100,000.   There are 474 homes that are in "Contingent" status, which means the seller has accepted an offer and the bank is considering accepting the offer.  In order to be in Contingent status, the property is most likely a Short Sale.  What is a Short Sale?  A Short Sale is when the owner owes more than they can sell it for on the open market.  There are currently 350 homes in escrow (Pending status, which means the buyer and seller have agreed upon terms and price and are now in escrow).  There have been a total of 883 homes that have sold since Jan. 1, 2012.   The average sold price to date for a single family detached home is $351,000.

The statistics above can change from day to day.  Chula Vista is a very desirable city and a buyer looking in this area needs to have an aggressive FULL TIME Real Estate agent looking for homes every day, 7 days a week.
 
Before you get in the car an actually begin looking for homes you should be pre-qualified from a bank or experienced mortgage broker.  (I have great lenders I work with who can help you with all your lending needs).

If you are interested in looking for homes for sale in Chula Vista or or any other area in San Diego County, please call or email me.

Posted in Chula Vista, CA
May 2, 2012

Del Cerro May 2012 Housing Update

del cerro homes for sale

Looking for a good Del Cerro Realtor and one who knows the Del Cerro market?  I’m available 7 seven days a week and am experienced in this type of market.

Del Cerro is located in central San Diego and borders the communities of San Carlos, Allied Gardens, College Area and La Mesa.

The homes are centered in the hills above Mission Trails Regional Park overlooking Mission Valley.  Del Cerro is considered an upscale community and is known for it’s luxuriours ranch style single level homes.   The residents enjoy sweeping views of canyons, mountains, city and many of the homes have ocean views as well.  

Currently there are a total of 36 Del Cerro Homes for Sale ranging in price from $325,000 to $1,500,000.   There are 16 homes that are in "Contingent" status, which means the seller has accepted an offer and the bank is considering accepting the short sale.  In order to be in Contingent status, the property is most likely a Short Sale.  What is a Short Sale?  A Short Sale is when the owner owes more than they can sell it for on the open market.  There are currently 47 homes in escrow (Pending status, which means the buyer and seller have agreed upon terms and price and are now in escrow).  There have been a total of 78 homes that have sold since Jan. 1, 2012.   The average sold price for a single family detached home in the first quarter of 2012 was $445,000.

The statistics above can change from day to day.  Del Cerro is a very desirable community and a buyer looking in this area needs to have an aggressive FULL TIME Del Cerro Real Estate agent looking for homes 7 days a week.
 
Before you get in the car an actually begin looking for homes you should be pre-qualified from a bank or experienced mortgage broker.  (I have great lenders I work with who can help you with all your lending needs).

If you are interested in looking for a home in Del Cerro or any other area in San Diego County, please call or email me.

Posted in Del Cerro
April 23, 2012

Otay Ranch Short Sale Agent

Work with a Professional Otay Ranch Short Sale Agent who is available Monday through Sunday.

otay ranch short sale agentotay ranch short sale agent

Choosing the right Otay Ranch Short Sale Agent is critical.  You often only get one chance to successfully negotiate a Short Sale.  Do your research and choose a Professional who has successfully negotiated Short Sales in Otay Ranch for other homeowners and knows how to deal with lenders.

Call/email/text me 7 days a week and I will explain how we successfully negotiate all our Short Sales.

Short Sale Specialist

Dale F. Downing, Realtor

Go to the "Contact Us" page and contact me immediately.

Search for all houses in Otay Ranch.

Posted in Otay Ranch
April 9, 2012

Eastlake Short Sale Agent

Work with a Professional Eastlake Short Sale Agent who is available Monday through Sunday

eastlake short sale agent

  eastlake short sale agent

Choosing the right Eastlake Short Sale Agent is critical.  You often only get one chance to successfully negotiate a Short Sale.  Do your research and choose a Professional who has successfully negotiated Short Sales for other homeowners and knows how to deal with lenders.

Call/email/text me 7 days a week and I will explain how we successfully negotiate all our Short Sales.

Short Sale Specialist

Dale F. Downing, Realtor

Go to the "Contact Us" page and contact me immediately.

Search for all Eastlake Short Sales