Laguna Hills, CA Real Estate News

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Joel Mateo (1968-2007)Joel passed away last October 2007, just 6 months after being diagnosed with stage 4 colorectal cancer.  Joel was 39 and is survived by his wife, Ever, and two young boys, Jonah and Ayden.  Joel was a hard-working and loving husband, father, son, brother, and friend.  Unfortunately, at the time of his diagnosis, Joel did not have health insurance and therefore faced many challenges with receiving health care.  Fortunately, by the grace of God, he was able to find kindhearted, competent physicians at St. Joseph Hospital, where he fought a hard but brief battle. He was the bread winner of his household.  As you can imagine, Joel's family has been left behind with the difficulties of trying to piece back their lives while facing insurmountable financial burdens. Our M...
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By Zen Ziejewski, Laguna Niguel Real Estate
(Keller Williams Realty)
As of April 2nd, 2008 according to the Multiple Listing Service (MLS) the total number of active listings in Laguna Hills totaled 202 homes (condos, townhomes and single family homes).  This is down 73 homes from February 2008 with a total of 275 homes on the market.  We have seen a nice pick up in Orange County home sales in February and March of 2008.The inventory numbers are holding steady which is a good sign for the market.  The FED cut interest rates by .75 basis points in March.  This will help keep interest rates fairly low as the bond market decides what to do next.  The new conforming loan limits were announced in March.  The new conforming loan limit is now $729,750.  This will definitely help buyers and sellers in the Orange County housing market.  The former conforming rate...
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By John Alesi, (Orange County California Real Estate)
(Century 21 Award)
South Coast Symphony Concert - Laguna Hillsby John Alesi, Laguna Hills REALTOR®Laguna Hills CA Real EstateAs some of you may know, I have had a life long passion for music...all kinds of music; jazz, rock, country, classical...you name it and I like it!One of our local Orange County groups, The South Coast Symphony, has announced the latest concert in their 2007-2008 series, Winter Dreams, which will be held on April 4th.  The performance is scheduled to begin at 8:00pm at Lake Hills Community Church in Laguna Hills, CA.  Featured on the program will be Tchaikovsky's Symphony No. 1, November Woods by Bax, Winter from Vivaldi's The Four Seasons, and Blow, Blow Thou Winter Wind by British composer, John Rutter.  The featured soloist on the program will be local Orange County violinist, Da...
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By Marlene Bridges, Laguna Homes|Laguna Condos|Laguna Real Estate
(Village Real Estate Services, Inc.)
Thanks to D.J. Breckheimer's post Small GREEN ideas for the new year (Which of these do you already do?) I began thinking about some of the simple things that we can do to help improve our environment.  D.J.'s post reminded me of a recent mind shift I had last week.  While shopping for New Year's Eve goodies,  I visited one of my favorite stores, Trader Joe's in Laguna Hills, CA. They were having a sale on a great insulated shopping bag for only $2.99.  Since I had some cold items and a few more stops, I thought it was a good idea to purchase one of these bags.  When I got to the checkout stand, they loaded my cold items right into my new bag and zipped it up for me.  The checker handed me a little red coupon.  She said to fill out my name and phone number and drop it in the box on my w...
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By Marlene Bridges, Laguna Homes|Laguna Condos|Laguna Real Estate
(Village Real Estate Services, Inc.)
 A review of the statistics available from MLS for the City of Laguna Hills for the first two quarters of 2006 and 2007 show:  What does this mean?  The home prices in Laguna Hills are spread across such a wide range that simply looking at sales prices can be very misleading.  Currently, the lowest priced residential property is a modular, 2 bedroom, 2 bath condo listed at $293,000.  The highest priced residential property is an estate property priced at $7,999,000 with 7 bedrooms, 10 bathrooms, an 11,500 square foot lot and a five car garage.  The second highest priced residential property currently listed for sale $3,794,876.  Here is a summary of the residential properties available at varying price points:  The 251 Active Listings break down as follows:31 at $293,000 to $350,00069 a...
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By Erica Yamaguchi, Irvine, CA Real Estate
(Keller Williams Elite Realty)
The Saddleback Optimist Club of Laguna Hills helps the kids of Girls and Boys Town by planning activities with the kids as well as raising funds.If you are interested in joining the group, here's the next planning meeting coming up... Wednesday, July 25th from 12 noon to 1pm. This will be a meeting to brainstorm ideas for supporting the kids of Girls and Boys Town. We're planning evening activities for the fall, to go to the children's homes and introduce the kids to a variety of activities. If you have a talent to share, please join us.Some of the things we are considering are: Reading, Drawing/Doodling as a relaxation technique, Magic tricks, Cards, and other games. We also will continue to plan future fundraisers.The homes have a $2 million shortfall. This affects all the kids from i...
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By Marlene Bridges, Laguna Homes|Laguna Condos|Laguna Real Estate
(Village Real Estate Services, Inc.)
Don't you just love it when someone recommends a good restaurant and it turns out to be a great restaurant?  Such was the case on Tuesday morning.  I decided to take myself out to breakfast following our early morning Laguna Hills/Laguna Woods Chamber of Commerce Board Meeting.  I had been told that the Break of Dawn was a very special restaurant owned by a former Ritz Carlton Chef, Dee Nguyen.  So, I decided, what's not to like here?  I'll just pop in for breakfast and introduce myself and the chamber of commerce to Dee,.The restaurant is tucked away in a cozy corner of the Oakbrook Shopping Center in Laguna Hills.  It's a very tranquil setting among trees adjacent to a fountain,   There's ample outside seating at tables under market umbrellas.The interior of the restaurant is a large ...
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By Marlene Bridges, Laguna Homes|Laguna Condos|Laguna Real Estate
(Village Real Estate Services, Inc.)
No, it's not Cheers in Boston.  It's a great little place snuggled in a corner in the OakBrook Shopping Center in Laguna Hills, California.  The first time you go in, you'll be warmly greeted by one of the managers and many of the patrons.  I was intrigued by the name modestly posted on the outside of the building "Yarn Lady".  I have a great friend who loves to knit and is always looking for new resources, so I went inside.Behind that front door was a whole new world!  There were the normal bins and cubbies filled with beautiful yarns, but there was so much more.  There were some big dining room-type tables and chairs where the classes are held.  There were recliners and rockers and seating areas in front of televisions where instructional videos were available for viewing.  And all th...
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By Lindsay Oglesby
(First Team Real Estate)
Come and join the fun at the City's Annual Fourth of July Celebration! Food and drinks are available for purchase. Seating is not provided, so bring lawn chairs and umbrellas. The festivities begin at 4:00 p.m. at the Laguna Hills Community Center and Sports Complex with fireworks following at approximately 9:00 p.m. For more information, please contact the Community Services Department at (949) 707-2680.
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By Lindsay Oglesby
(First Team Real Estate)
Thank you to the wonderful team of people that I surround myself with.  I feel if you surround yourself with smart successful people, you have no choice but to succeed!  Randy is my loan officer of choice for all of my prospective clients.  He has so much useful information that I thought i should share it.  The Power of Interest By Randy Stitt, CMPS   Over the last 12 months the majority of potential homeowners have been focused on the price of a home.  Just look at the weekend newspapers as proof of the never-ending flow of opinions about where the real estate market is going. If you take some of them serious, then we should all sell our homes for the past profits and wait till 2012 to buy them back on the courthouse steps at auction.  Of course, these same people were preaching doom ...
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As previously stated in my blog, Laguna Hills is a great place to buy a home.  There are many benefits to living in Laguna Hills such as low property tax rates, low HOA dues & no extra hidden fees that you may find in some of the newer cities.  As of May 19th, 2007 here are samples from active MLS listings that will give you an overview of what you can expect to buy a condo or single family residence for in certain price categories in Laguna Hills:$1 to $300,000 will allow you to buy a 1 bedroom condo between approximately 790-800 square feet.$301,000 to $600,000 you will find 1,2 & 3 bedroom condos up between approximately 650-1800 square feet.  You will also find a dozen or so homes (single family residences) ranging from approximately 1000 square feet all the way up to 2000 square fe...
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As home prices in Orange County California have skyrocketed, potential home owners are looking for ways to minimize their monthly expenses. One great way to do this is to buy a home in a city that has lower overall property taxes, minimal to no mello roos tax and low Home Owners Association dues.Laguna Hills is one of the cities where your approximate property tax is 1.1% of your purchase price. There is no mello-roos tax in Laguna Hills and Home Owners Association dues are relatively low. On average the majority of Laguna Hills homes (single family residences) have Home Owner Association dues that range between $0 to $100 per month. For more information on this spectacular community, visit the city of Laguna Hills website. Buying a home in Orange County California is a huge accomplishm...
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By Marlene Bridges, Laguna Homes|Laguna Condos|Laguna Real Estate
(Village Real Estate Services, Inc.)
      Selling a home is something most people seldom do.  Since it typically takes some effort and a little inconvenience to accomplish, most people who decide to sell their homes have a reason to do so that outweighs the reasons not to sell.  So, if after making the effort the house didn't sell, this can be very frustrating.  Here's a list of the top 10 reasons a home doesn't sell in Orange County with number 10 being the most important.           Hard to show - the hours the home is available to show are limited or there is no lockbox.Out-dated; Flooring, colors, appliances, bathrooms are out of style or out-dated.Pet issues - if you have a dog or cat that's a member of the family, you may not notice it, but there may be pet odors in your home.  Carpets and upholstery need to be clean...
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By Marlene Bridges, Laguna Homes|Laguna Condos|Laguna Real Estate
(Village Real Estate Services, Inc.)
I received an email from one of the great all time clients.  It had one simple sentence, "Will I lose points if I eat the Cheez-its?"  I staged their home on Friday to get ready for the photo shoot.  One of the things I placed in the kitchen was some tall jars filled with some visually interesting things.  One jar is layered with colored beans, another with some pasta and the third jar you guessed it---is filled with Cheez-its.  I started to email her back, then decided to call instead.  I explained she was welcome to eat the Cheez-its and she wouldn't lose points but would likely lose her lunch because the Cheez-its had been in that jar for about 6 months.We both had a good laugh.  This lovely lady and her husband are stellar clients.  They are the kind of people REALTORS® dream about ...
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By Marlene Bridges, Laguna Homes|Laguna Condos|Laguna Real Estate
(Village Real Estate Services, Inc.)
On May 11th the Laguna Hills Chamber of Commerce welcomed a new member with a ribbon cutting.  This is a business that everyone needs to know about.  At Home Living Solutions is a company dedicated to helping people maintain their independence despite aging and/or disabilities.  With our population graying so rapidly (someone turns 60 every second), there is a tremendous need for this type of business.At Home Living Solutions is a construction company that aids in consulting, design and construction and installation of access ramps, stair lifts, elevators, pool lifts, upright bathing units and a number of other access related items.  They are also a great resource for mobility items such as wheelchairs, scooter, segways, walkers, lift chairs, and many types of assistive furniture.I'm pl...
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By Marlene Bridges, Laguna Homes|Laguna Condos|Laguna Real Estate
(Village Real Estate Services, Inc.)
There is a very special organization in Orange County that offers advocacy for people with disabilities and for seniors.  It's called the Dayle McIntosh Center.  They originally opened in Garden Grove and now have an office is Laguna Hills.  Their mission statement reads:"To advance the empowerment, equality, integration, and full participation of people with disabilities in the community."Here's a thumbnail sketch of the services this not-for-profit organization makes available to the community:Advocacy  -  Assist people with disabilities with concerns that affect their ability to live independently.Aging with Vision Loss  - Assists individuals who are at least fifty-five years old and who are experiencing significant vision loss as part of the aging processAssistive Technology  -  Pro...
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By Marlene Bridges, Laguna Homes|Laguna Condos|Laguna Real Estate
(Village Real Estate Services, Inc.)
   Laguna Hills High School Stadium is Scheduled to Open This FallThe Hawks' first home game is scheduled for September 21st against the El Toro Chargers.  Judging from this photo from www.ocvarsity.com posted by Dan Albano on April 2nd, it looks like the Hawks are on target to be ready to host their first home game in their own stadium.The school has been using the stadium at Mission Viejo High School for all their home games in the past.  This has been a long-awaited addition to Laguna Hills High School.  It's a school with a lot of heart---now they'll have a stadium, too!  It'll be a great day to be in the stands on opening day to cheer the Hawks Varsity Football team on to victory.  Laguna Hills High School is located at 25401 Paseo de Valencia, Laguna Hills, CA 92653Here are a few ...
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By Marlene Bridges, Laguna Homes|Laguna Condos|Laguna Real Estate
(Village Real Estate Services, Inc.)
On Friday afternoon, I watched Ralph's Store Manager, Jim Mirsch,  distribute $2,500 checks like they were "cents off coupons".  Ralph's was celebrating their Grand Re-Opening by giving back to the community that has helped them become so successful.    Mayor Melody Carruth kicked off the event with thanks to Ralph's for being such good neighbors.  She thanked them especially for allowing card tables to be set up for Girl Scout cookie sales and voter registration.           The first check went to Valencia Elementary.  Principal Sharon Vestermark accepted the check and said the money would be used to re-outfit the school's computer lab.        Lomarena Elementary Principal Laura Canzone said they'd be using their grant for the Library and their "Reading Counts" program.          Laguna ...
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By Marlene Bridges, Laguna Homes|Laguna Condos|Laguna Real Estate
(Village Real Estate Services, Inc.)
The City of Laguna Hills is located in the Saddleback Valley in South Orange County California.  It is approximately three miles inland from the Pacific Ocean and the rocky and stunningly beautiful Laguna Beach coastline.  The City of Laguna Hills lies south of Disneyland (in Anaheim) and north of San Diego at California's southernmost tip.  The mild climate and coastal breezes provided a perfect setting for the vast cattle ranches that originally covered the area just after Mexico gained its independence from Spain in the early 1800's.  One of the early land grants known as Rancho Niguel was given to Don Juan Avila.  It is this former ranchland with a land area of approximately 6.3 square miles on which the City of Laguna Hills is now located. Laguna Hills is home to nearly 33,000 peop...
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