Showing posts from August, 2020

Housing Affordability: 18-Month Low Due to Lack of Supply and Higher Prices

David Deem 714-997-3486

Housing affordability reached an 18-month low in the second quarter of 2020, according to the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB)/Wells Fargo Housing Opportunity Index (HOI).

Between the beginning of April and end of June, 59.6 percent of new and existing homes sold were affordable to families with a median income of $72,900. This is a decrease from the 61.3 percent of homes sold in the first quarter of 2020 that were affordable, and the lowest reading since Q4 of 2018.

Because HUD's estimates for median family income for 2020 were set before the pandemic, the estimates used in the HOI calculations were adjusted to reflect a median price that's 7.1 percent lower than the original number of $78,500.

"There was underbuilding before the pandemic hit, and the coronavirus outbreak has exacerbated the situation by disrupting existing supply chains," said NAHB Chairman Chuck Fowke, a custom home builder from Tampa, Fla. "Bui…

Orange County Housing Summary: August 11, 2020

David Deem 714-997-3486
The active listing inventory decreased by 141 homes in the past two-weeks, down 3%, and now totals 4,449, its lowest level for August since tracking began in 2004. In July, there were 2% more homes placed on the market compared to last year and identical to the 5-year average; thus, COVID-19’s grip on suppressing the inventory has vanished. Last year, there were 7,488 homes on the market, 3,039 additional homes, or 68% more.Demand, the number of pending sales over the prior month, increased by 81 pending sales in the past two-weeks, up 3%, and now totals 3,281, its highest level since September 2012. COVID-19 currently has no effect on demand. Last year, there were 2,606 pending sales, 21% fewer than today.The Expected Market Time for all of Orange County decreased from 43 days to 41, a Hot Seller’s Market (less than 60 days). It was at 89 days last year, much slower than today. For homes priced below $750,000, the market is a hot Seller’s Market…

Hygge Home Ideas Your Family Will Adore

David Deem 714-997-3486

In the last few years, especially as the colder seasons approach, you’ve probably heard the word hygge (pronounced hoo-gah). Hygge is the Scandinavian word for cozy, but it is also a way of life and design mantra. The idea is to elevate your decor to create a warm atmosphere and a place to enjoy life’s little moments. If you are ready to embrace a cozy hygge ambiance in your home this year, these ideas are perfect for the whole family.

Create a Meeting Space
The hygge home is centered around community. It welcomes guests to sit and chat and encourages household members to take a moment to focus on each other. You don’t have to have a 70’s-style conversation pit to evoke a meeting space in your home. Simply arrange furniture in a way that promotes conversation. This means avoiding centering your furniture around electronics. Don’t worry, you don’t have to ditch your tv altogether, but instead consider hiding your tv to further contribute to a hygge …

Quick Tips to Make Your Room Look Bigger

David Deem 714-997-3486

Small spaces have their own charm and challenges, but every home--regardless of size--can benefit from visually adding space. Thankfully, there are a few key tricks to making your rooms look bigger that are easy to implement.

Scale Down
This may be obvious, but a massive couch will swallow a small room. If your room is small, or you would simply like to maximize your empty space, opt for smaller furniture and even smaller art. Keep everything appropriate for the scale of the room.

Use Vertical Space
Keep your floor uncluttered by using vertical space instead. Opt against horizontal storage options like large trunks or long dressers. Strategically staged tall bookcases and tall dressers can serve to house items without compromising your floor space

Go for Minimalist Style
Too many items in a small room looks cluttered, even if it’s organized. Lean towards a minimalist aesthetic to ensure that you are not visually cramping your space.

Bring in the Light
A …

Toy Storage Ideas to Maximize Space

David Deem 714-997-3486

It never seems to fail that kids acquire more toys than parents can keep up with. While it can be good to cull through toys once-in-a-while to prevent against excess that causes clutter, there is a lot to be said for good toy storage practices. Great toy storage solutions can ensure that your children can access their favorite toys without creating a mess too big for them to handle. These savvy solutions may be just what your home--and your children--need to keep toys and books cared for and contained.

Pegboard Organizer
Keeping toys out of the way but still easy to access is always a challenge. Pegboards are the perfect solution to this issue. Toys can be in view at all times but hung up utilizing vertical space. This is an excellent solution for kids of any age, since it’s so easy to put items back after use. Hang up nerf guns and swords, badminton rackets, art supplies and more!

Picture Ledges
Not just for pictures, these slim shelves serve as the…

Pros and Cons of Having Your Kids Sleep in Bunk Beds

David Deem 714-997-3486

If your house has limited space, your kids may have to share a room. Bunk beds can help you make the best use of available space and give your family options in the future, but there are possible problems to take into consideration.

More Space for Play and Storage
Young children need lots of space to play, as well as room for a toy box, shelves and dressers. With two single beds taking up valuable floor space, the rest of the room can feel cramped. With bunk beds, you could maximize the use of vertical space and make the entire room feel bigger. In addition, many bunk bed designs feature built-in drawers and shelves where kids can arrange their belongings.

Privacy and Independence
For kids who share a bedroom, privacy can be hard to come by. With bunk beds, each child will have an individual space to read, do homework, write, draw or sleep. If your kids have different sleeping schedules, the overhead light can be off, and one child can use a clip-on …

Creative Ways to Use That Spare Bedroom

David Deem 714-997-3486

If you’re lucky enough to have a spare bedroom, you may want to think of it less as a rarely used landing spot for guests or a place to store extra ‘stuff,’ and more as a blank canvas - a pleasant spot you can use for rest, relaxation, hobbies or exercise, or even as a money-making option.

Consider these inspiring ideas from room designers and creative thinkers:Get crafty - Do you sew occasionally? Like to draw or paint? Love to do amazing gift-wraps? Fill the room with smart choices of furnishings, storage, tables and accessories to make your hobby more fun than ever.Make it personal - Turn the room into a ma’am- or man-cave, with comfy furnishings, a TV and sound system and anything else you need to make it a cozy, personal retreat.Make it a study - Create a cheerful home office space where you or your kids can pay bills, read online or study without interruption. Install a work counter/desk across one wall, add enough chairs and supply drawers,…

Don't Flush These 8 Items Down Your Toilet

David Deem 714-997-3486

Homeowners flush a lot of things down their toilets without considering the potential plumbing issues it may cause. If they’re lucky, they’ll only have to use a plunger to tackle a minor clog. But if a major issue arises, they may need to call a plumber and pay for costly repairs.

Whether your home has a septic tank or sewage line, there are certain items you should never flush. To prevent unnecessary clogs and damage to your home’s plumbing, take some advice from the pros. Harts Services, a Tacoma, Wash.-based plumbing company, shares its list of the top items that shouldn’t go down your toilet:

Dental Floss. Not only is floss non-biodegradable, but it can also tangle up with other debris and turn small clogs into big ones. If flushed into a septic tank, floss can wind itself around a motor and cause it to burn out.

Paper Towels. It may seem okay to flush paper towels because they look a lot like toilet paper, but flushed paper towels are one of th…

5 Money-Saving Tips for Kitchen Cabinets

David Deem 714-997-3486
Are you planning a kitchen remodel? If so, you could save a lot of money by finding and buying cheaper cabinets. The trick, however, is to save without compromising on style or quality. To help you choose the right cabinets for a budget-friendly kitchen project, HomeAdvisor offers the following five tips:

1. Get the Best Kitchen Cabinets for the Money. The most affordable kitchen cabinets can start around $30 per linear foot, with minimal features. It’s cheaper to choose standard sizes, like 24” or 30” wide. Custom options take more work, so they can be expensive. Pull-out shelves and drawers cost the most, so you may want to limit them. For the most part, there isn’t a big difference in value between $30 and $100 per linear foot. Bargain kitchen cabinets tend to have a thinner frame and shelving, which means they can bow or sag under pressure. If you plan to store heavy tools or appliances, opt for thicker panels made of plywood.

2. Stick With Ine…

How Does a Reverse Mortgage Work?

David Deem 714-997-3486

A reverse mortgage is a loan designed to help older homeowners access home equity while using their house as collateral. This can provide financial flexibility and security in retirement, but it’s important to understand the terms.

Who Is Eligible for a Reverse Mortgage?
Reverse mortgages are intended for people who own a house outright or who have a large amount of equity. A Home Equity Conversion Mortgage (HECM) is the most popular type of reverse mortgage. It’s insured by the federal government and widely available through Federal Housing Administration (FHA)-approved lenders.

The youngest borrower for a reverse mortgage must be at least 62 years old. The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development sets financial eligibility criteria. The borrower must use the house as a primary residence, pay required property taxes and homeowners insurance premiums, and maintain the house according to FHA requirements.

How Much Money Can You Get and How Can…

Homeownership Rises and Vacancy Rates Drop

David Deem 714-997-3486
Vacancy rates have decreased over the past year, according to Census reporting. For the second quarter of 2020, national vacancy rates were 5.7 percent in rental housing and 0.9 percent for homeowner housing.On the rental front, that's 1.1 percent lower than the rate in Q2 of 2019, and 0.9 percent lower than the first quarter of 2020—a small, but optimistic improvement. In the homeownership space, the rate was 0.4 percent lower than Q2 2019 and 0.2 percent lower than the year's first quarter.

The overall homeownership rate has increased to 67.9 percent—3.8 percentage points higher than the second quarter in 2019 and 2.6 percent higher than 2020's first quarter.

On a regional basis for rentals, vacancy rates in the South and Midwest reported similar numbers at 7.4 percent and 6.8 percent, respectively. Meanwhile, the Northeast had a vacancy rate of 4.2 percent in the second quarter, while the West was lower at 3.8 percent.

Homeowner vacan…