Monday, July 28, 2008

New Financial Product to Free Up Mortage Financing

US Treasury Secretary Paulson announced today that the four largest US banks are prepared to create a market for a new kind of product to help free up liquidity in the mortgage market. This type of action is needed to get the Santa Rosa real estate market going again.
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Covered bonds, issued by banks and secured by pools of
assets like home loans, are widely used in Europe but have only
become attractive in the United States since the segment of the
mortgage securitization market driven by investment banks dried
up last year amid a wave of foreclosures.

He said that Bank of America (NYSE:BAC - News), Citigroup (NYSE:C - News),
JPMorgan Chase (NYSE:JPM - News) and Wells Fargo (NYSE:WFC - News) said they intend
to establish covered-bond programs "and kick-start this market
in the United States."

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Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Sonoma County Foreclosures Dip Slightly

California foreclosures rise at 6.6% but Sonoma County drop by 1.1%. Still too early to tell if this is the bottom as the numbers are very high when compared to year over year.

Foreclosure activity showed signs of leveling off in Sonoma County during the second quarter even as it continued to spiral to unprecedented highs in other parts of the state, according to a study issued Tuesday.

Lenders sent 1,376 default notices to Sonoma County borrowers who fell behind on their mortgages, down 1.1 percent from the first quarter, when lenders issued 1,392 default notices, according to DataQuick Information Systems, a real estate research firm.

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Santa Rosa Home Sales for Week of June 29

A list of homes sold in Santa Rosa for the week of June 29.

721 Mill St., $285,000

713 Trowbridge St., $230,000

510 Duncan St., $320,000

1617 Clover Lane, $372,500

3619 Yale Drive, $360,000

1615 Solano Drive, $349,000

2810 Sioux St., $250,000

2728 Navajo St., $205,000

6413 Meadow Creek Lane, $535,000

405 Oak Brook Place, $770,000

429 Oak Vista Drive, $719,100

9432 Oak Trail Circle, $682,972

2065 Tebow Court, $425,000

2365 Redoak Drive, $428,000

2348 Maria Luz Court W., $325,000

2322 Jose Ave., $295,000

1373 Peterson Lane, $411,000

421 Manka Circle, $310,000

439 Ashwood Drive, $200,000

323 Anteeo Way, $235,000

2145 Fairfax Place, $370,000

2155 Onyx Way, $305,000

1232 Comalli St., $430,000

1390 Funston Drive, $292,000

4455 Hall Road, $380,000

115 Coronation Drive, $350,000

2077 Banjo Drive, $360,000

1839 Bancroft Drive, $300,000

1308 Starview Drive, $260,000

1906 Greeneich Ave., $295,000

2822 Audubon Court, $305,000

3490 Bonita Vista Drive, $500,000

3823 Rocky Point Way, $734,000

2319 Northwood Drive, $348,181

556 Silva Ave., $337,500

2126 Orchard St., $400,000

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Foreclosures Continue to Rise

The Santa Rosa real estate market is not immune to the foreclosure crisis that has infected California. With median home prices falling and more foreclosures on the horizon there won't be a bottom till next spring. If you are thinking of buying a home, be sure to save as much as you can and keep your dept low, there are deals to be had on Santa Rosa homes.
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In all, some 63,061 homes were lost to foreclosure in the second quarter -- the most in any quarter since 1988, when the firm began tracking foreclosures.

Foreclosures, measured by the number of trustee deeds recorded, increased about 33 percent from the previous quarter and jumped 261 percent versus the same quarter last year.

Notices of default, meanwhile, more than doubled in the second quarter to 121,341 loans on a total of 118,020 homes, compared to the year-ago period.

Most of the home loans that slipped into default in the most recent quarter were made between September 2005 and November 2006, as air came out of the housing bubble.

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Monday, July 21, 2008

Quick Tip When Buying Foreclosures

Whether it's Santa Rosa CA or anywhere USA, seems like everyone is talking about buying real estate foreclosures. There are deals to be had, just be careful.
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Buying at a public auction is the most common type of foreclosure purchase. Buyers can expect a discount of 10% to 25% compared with buying a home through traditional channels, says Dean Street, an agent and 30-year veteran of foreclosure buying in the western U.S. But the road to auction can be bumpy, too. For starters, you often cannot inspect the interior of the home. Street says it's vital to see the property even if you can't gain entry. "If there is 300 pounds of garbage in the front yard, there is probably 600 pounds inside," he says. One way to research the interior is to check the local building department's permit records, or have your agent see if a recent listing has information on appearance, layout and previous remodelings.

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Thursday, July 17, 2008

Housing Starts Down to lowest level since 1991

The first step in getting the housing market in Santa Rosa back on track is to reduce the inventory of homes for sale (Santa Rosa Real Estate Home Inventory Stats) and at a national level, we are seeing the signs. Is this the beginning of the end of the housing crisis? Probably not. But it just may be the first sign that the market is turning.
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The Commerce Department reported Thursday that construction of single-family homes dropped by 5.3 percent in June to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 647,000 units, the weakest performance since January 1991, another period when the housing industry was going through a severe downturn.

Private economists were not enthusiastic about by the housing report, however, stressing that the data was being skewed by the one-month spurt of activity in New York that was magnified by the fact that the government adjusts one-month changes to annual rates. Analysts predicted that housing will continue to be under strains for the rest of the year.

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Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Santa Rosa Home Sales for Week of June 22

There were 35 homes sold in Santa Rosa for the week of June 22. I've listed each of the homes sold in Santa Rosa below and the selling price for each Santa Rosa home too.

641 Oak St., $263,000

1605 Lang Court, $319,000

3133 Sonoma Ave., $285,000

2107 Midway Drive, $480,000

1809 Calavaras Drive, $479,000

255 Mockingbird Circle, $490,000

45 Autumn Leaf Drive, $548,500

1631 Nina Court, $370,000

2105 Lapper Ave., $340,000

1928 Waterford St., $315,000

4187 Concord Ave., $365,500

2368 Donna Maria Way, $309,000

513 Chipmunk Court, $350,000

1305 Lombardi Lane, $290,000

1089 Pippin Circle, $400,000

4165 Yeager Drive, $325,000

1911 Eversley Place, $380,000

1579 Cabernet Circle, $355,000

1685 W. College Ave., $383,500

5477 Carriage Lane, $590,000

2376 Summercreek Drive, $360,000

2555 Horseshoe Drive, $550,000

4820 Cottsberry Court, $690,000

2065 Banjo Drive, $310,000

1768 Fenwick Drive, $260,000

5409 Santa Teresa Ave., $630,000

3529 Flintwood Drive, $429,000

3957 Park Gardens Drive, $700,000

3664 Crown Hill Drive, $1,165,000

133 Northwood Court, $570,000

3002 Sunridge Drive, $550,000

1604 El Rancho Way, $420,000

4549 Offner Lane, $660,000

4716 Culebra Way, $530,000

4941 Snark Ave., $375,500

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Friday, July 11, 2008

"OMG - Freddie and Fannie" - Real Estate is so interesting....

This weekend will be interesting... it is really hitting the fan with Freddie and Fannie for the real estate market. But the bottom line is "this will pass". Not today, not tomorrow, but this will pass....
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While most of the mortgages they hold are fixed-rate loans to borrowers with good credit, the housing downturn has been so severe that they have sustained gigantic losses in their loan portfolios due to foreclosures — about $11 billion over the past few months — pushing them closer to the financial brink.

And because their stock prices have plunged so far, they are hard pressed to raise fresh capital on their own.

Former St. Louis Fed President William Poole this week said Fannie and Freddie were already technically insolvent.

"There's no good news here for the housing market or for the broader economy," said Mark Zandi, chief economist at Moody's

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Will tightening credit markets effect Santa Rosa Real Estate?

I just got an email from my financial planner urging me to put today's dramatic plunge in the stock market into perspective. Thank goodness I have a strong stomach for market fluctuations. But the one bit of today's news that is most troubling to me is the news about Fannie and Freddie:

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Because of the turmoil surrounding Fannie and Freddie, recent borrowers are likely paying nearly 10% more in monthly mortgage payments than they would have.

"Some lenders are really pulling in their horns," said Steve Habetz, a Connecticut mortgage broker. "They're getting scared. They're demanding really clean loan applications with every i dotted and every t crossed."

The troubles for Fannie and Freddie could even affect current mortgage borrowers since they put the housing rescue bills that Congress has been agonizing over for months in jeopardy, according to Zandi, who has testified before the Senate on aspects of the bills.

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What this means to Santa Rosa real estate, both buyers and sellers, is a tighter credit market decreasing the number of qualified buyers. With less buyers, the home inventory will continue to rise. As inventories rise, prices fall.

We're not at the bottom yet.

See the real estate stats for Santa Rosa for yourself, not a pretty picture.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Letter from New York Times - Will it work in Santa Rosa?

I ran into an interesting article from the NYT on Yahoo today. The gist of the the article is that now is the time to approach sellers with compelling offers and quotes the following stats. Interesting real estate reading...
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First, consider the big picture. Nationwide, home prices in the first quarter of 2008 fell 14.1 percent compared with the same period a year earlier, according to the Standard & Poor’s/Case-Shiller U.S. National Home Price Index.
Not only that, earlier this month, the National Association of Realtors pointed to the huge number of existing homes on the market. As of the end of April, the total number was 4.55 million. At the rate people are buying right now, that represents an 11.2-month supply.
So buyers have options right now. A lot of them. I’m no different. Your home is great, but it isn’t unique. Few homes are. I know this may be hard to hear, since you’ve spent years creating memories here. But you may be waiting a long time if you hope to find a buyer with the same emotional connection that you have.
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Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Santa Rosa Real Estate

This is my first post on the Santa Rosa Real Estate blog. I will post information about Santa Rosa CA real estate as often as I can. I am entering the real estate market in Santa Rosa and have been studying the Santa Rosa real estate market for over two years.

There are some very interesting dynamics happening in the Santa Rosa real estate market.

You can see the latest sales trends in Santa Rosa real estate here.