All posts by Team Avalos Real Estate

Team Avalos is a husband and wife team with over 18yrs in the real estate industry. We are here to help you buy, sell, lease or answer any question you may have. Our areas of specialty include the Santa Clarita Valley & the San Fernando Valley situated in Southern California. You can count on us!

What It Takes To Earn Our Commission

Some owners think a Realtor’s commission is too high a price to pay. Here’s the real story on how we actually earn it.

It’s rare to find a real estate agent who works on a salary. In fact, as far as residential real estate sales goes, they’re practically a non existent entity.

Team Avalos Real Estate Santa Clarita
Rose and Carlos Avalos

Real estate agents (Like us) earn a living through the sale of homes…period. The commission amount usually equals a small percentage of the home’s total selling price that is negotiated between the seller and the agent. Even still, in some homeowner’s eyes that’s a lot of money. So we’ll break it down a bit more for you to show you what (and how) we actually earn when escrow is closed and we hand the keys to the buyer. Oh yeah, we don’t get paid a dime until escrow is closed!

Commission Split Between Listing Agent and Buyer’s Agent

Real estate agents who work with buyers also work on commission, and without this networking opportunity, the number of buyers coming through your home may be extremely limited. Offering a portion (usually half, maybe a bit more, maybe a bit less depending on the situation) of the total commission to an agent who brings a buyer is standard fare in the real estate world.

Okay, we’re down in commission by half…so what?

Marketing Your Listing Continue reading What It Takes To Earn Our Commission

The Pros and Cons Of The 15 Year Home Mortgage Loan

There are many benefits to paying off your mortgage more quickly, but is a 15 year loan right for you?

Interest rates are a sticky business. They rise, they fall…and while we try to predict their outcome, they’re a “moving target” when it comes to really 15yearfixedtrying to pinpoint where they will land on any given day.

We’ve noticed just a little bit of a bump in rates over the past month or so. Even still, they are holding just over 4 percent, which is still incredible. Are you aware that there are loan programs out there that are not only available at lower than standard rates, but will help you own your home more quickly?

The 15 Year Home Loan

Wouldn’t it be great to not have to make your mortgage payments for 30 years? What about the possibility of putting more of your house payment toward your principle, which increases your equity as you pay down your loan faster? What if, on top of all this, your loan is at a lower interest rate than a traditional 30 year home mortgage? Continue reading The Pros and Cons Of The 15 Year Home Mortgage Loan

Drawing Buyers Into Your Home Through Proper Staging

Top things you can do to make your home more appealing WITHOUT spending a lot of money.

We often talk about how different a real property purchase is from buying personal property. There is a whole lot more paperwork to start with! 28414 Gibraltar Drive Castaic CA 91384However, there are also a few similarities. For example, if you’re selling your car, you do everything you can to make sure it looks its best in hopes of appealing to potential buyers.

Believe it or not, some sellers don’t subscribe to that same belief when selling their home, which can cause buyers to pass them by. A few minor touches can make the difference in convincing a buyer that your home is the right home.

Don’t I need to hire a professional staging service?

While professional home stagers and interior consultants can provide valuable information on exactly how to “stage” your home to make it more appealing, it’s not completely necessary. However, a good consultant can help to maximize the space and possibilities of your home in a buyer’s eyes.

If your budget doesn’t quite have room for a professional, you should still consider these tips before the door is open and the buyers come pouring through. Continue reading Drawing Buyers Into Your Home Through Proper Staging

Santa Clarita Offers Rebates For Homeowners Who Drought-Proof Their Landscaping

Local water companies provide incentives for homeowners who conserve water.

It’s been on every Californian’s mind for the past couple of years. This year, high hopes of recovery through rain and snowfall were dashed by being one of the driest on record since weather records have been kept. What was last year a voluntary request to conserve water has now become a more direct requirement, with new laws and penalties being bandied about at our state capitol, as well as local municipalities.

According to the Environmental Protection Agency, approximately one third of residential water use is devoted to landscape irrigation equaling an average of just over 100 gallons per day. This may have been reduced slightly through mandatory watering schedules as released by our local water agencies, but even still, it takes a nominal amount of water to keep our grass green.  Continue reading Santa Clarita Offers Rebates For Homeowners Who Drought-Proof Their Landscaping

Where Will You Get Your Home Buying Money From?

Buying a home requires more than just funds from your home loan. Here are some tips that will help you cover other costs.

Yes, now is the perfect time to buy a home! Of course, a home purchase comes with costs you may incur above the price of the home. Insurance, Is your home a worthwhile investment?escrow and title fees, are just a few of the “closing costs” as part of the purchase process.

Then of course, is your down payment. Whether you’re going with a traditional fixed-rate mortgage with 20 percent down, or taking advantage of a loan with a lower down payment (Some loans are available with as little as 3 percent down), you still need to come up with that cash. So where does that cash come from? Here are a few suggestions.

Save it up!

Yes, here’s doing it the old fashioned, but tried and true way. When it comes to buying a home, it’s best to make your financial plan that gives you enough time to make sure your money is in order. This includes debt management and budgeting, so that you have the best opportunity to qualify for a low interest rate. While you’re making this plan, include a way to save some of that cash and put it away for your home purchase costs. Continue reading Where Will You Get Your Home Buying Money From?

Santa Clarita Home Prices Jump To Over $500K

Median Single Family Home Prices Rise 6% In One Month

Good news for Santa Clarita homeowners! Recent statistics released by the Southland Regional Association of Realtors showed the median price of a Team Avalos Real Estatesingle family home in the SCV rose to $520,000 in March; up a little more than 6 percent from February’s median price of $490,000.

That’s a $30,000 increase in equity in one month!

Are you starting to see why it’s better to own than to rent your home?

Now to be clear, home equity doesn’t jump this much every single month, but year over year, real estate in the Santa Clarita Valley has averaged an increase of over 6 percent since 1998 (The first full year the Southland Regional Association of Realtors provided public statistics). This includes the short term declines in the real estate market during the darkest years of the recent recession between 2008-2011.  Continue reading Santa Clarita Home Prices Jump To Over $500K

Will The Federal Reserve Raise Interest Rates?

Rates have remained low for the past several years, but when should they be raised? And just what IS the Federal Reserve, anyway?

We talk a lot about interest rates, and for obvious reasons. Unless you are paying cash for a home, then they play prominently in just how much home

Fderal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen
Fderal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen

you can afford.

Yes, rates have risen and fallen over the past few years, and today we’re not talking about interest as it pertains to the value of loans that are bought and sold on the stock market (Which can also affect rates); we’re instead talking about the Federal Reserve.

What is the Federal Reserve?

Established in 1913, the Federal Reserve acts as the nation’s bank. They set financial policies and terms that banks and lending institutions follow, and also loan money to those banks at a base interest rate that is below what the consumer would pay. The following video provides a brief and easy to understand explanation of how the Federal Reserve works.

Will interest rates go up?

Good question. Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen has more than hinted that it’s possible rates could rise sometime this year. If the Fed does raise the base interest rate, it will definitely affect a buyer’s loan limit or their mortgage payment amount. The best thing to do if you’re on the fence about buying a home is to lock in your rate now.

We are your choice for buying and selling real estate!

Team Avalos Real Estate is dedicated to helping you achieve all of your real estate goals, and our goal is to make sure your experience is positive and achieves the best results whether you’re buying or selling a home in the Santa Clarita or San Fernando Valley areas. Contact us today for a no obligation consultation.

Team Avalos Real Estate
Keller Williams VIP Properties
25124 Springfield Court, Suite 100
Valencia, CA 91355

Office: (661) 290-3743
Carlos direct: (818) 399-4093
Rose direct: (818) 590-2077

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Federal Programs That Help Distressed Homeowners Set To End This Year

Making Home Affordable has helped American homeowners since 2009.

Despite rising home prices and a national economy on the rebound, there are still homeowners who are either struggling to keep up with their stopforeclosures2mortgage, or are facing foreclosure.

We’ve helped many distressed homeowners over the years, and, along with the Federal Government’s Making Home Affordable program, there are still several options available for those struggling to avoid the bank taking their home.

That being said, the Federal program is set to end on December 31st of this year.

How can you get help?

Here are a few things to consider that will classify you as a “distressed homeowner:” Continue reading Federal Programs That Help Distressed Homeowners Set To End This Year

Condos Rise, Single Family Homes Take a Slight Dip In January

Home prices hold fairly steady going into 2015 in the Santa Clarita Valley.

New statistics out from the Southland Regional Association of Realtors showed home prices holding steady as we move head on into 2015.Santa Clarita Real Estate Update. Photo courtesy George D. Cummings

January showed single family homes dropping in median price by $15,000, which is not uncommon for this time of year as sales slow down slightly after the holidays. What’s interesting is that condominiums in the Santa Clarita Valley increased in January by $15,000 over December 2014. The last time the SCV saw condo prices jump (rather than fall) in January was in 2006.

This interesting rise in condo prices could be attributed to a few factors:

Federal Housing Administration (FHA) guideline changes for first time home buyers.

The FHA has made several changes to their approach toward first time home buyers in 2014. This included initiating an incentive program called Blueprint For Access. They have also reduced the cost of Private Mortgage Insurance by about 35 percent.  Continue reading Condos Rise, Single Family Homes Take a Slight Dip In January

FHA Program Helps Buyers With Low Credit Scores

“Blueprint For Access” program provides incentives to improve credit score and overall accountability.

Are you “credit shy?” Do you balk when it comes to the idea of speaking to a lender about your…<gulp> credit score? Federal Housing Administration

It’s understandable, especially for those who may have some credit challenges, to be slightly intimidated at the thought of talking to a lender about your credit history, especially when it seems the best loans and rates are reserved for those with “golden” credit. Or ARE they?

The Federal Housing Administration (FHA) recently released a new program designed to help those with lower credit scores obtain mortgage loans while rewarding them for their credit accountability.

The “Blueprint For Access” program was initiated late last year, and has already helped many buyers with less-than-perfect credit obtain home loans at competitive rates. Blueprint For Access helps potential home buyers work through their accountability issues through a counseling program called “Homeowners Armed With Knowledge” (HAWK). HAWK works to educate qualified home buyers about establishing (and keeping) good credit. It also works to establish clear “rules of the road” when it comes to maintaining good credit, and finally, the program rewards borrowers who complete the counseling program with a reduction of 50 basis points off of their up front mortgage insurance Continue reading FHA Program Helps Buyers With Low Credit Scores