Torrance, CA Real Estate News

By Larry Tolliver
(Keller Williams Realty)
Make an extra mortgage payment. The extra interest you pay will be added to this year's mortgage interest by your lender, boosting your itemized deductions.  Donate to charity. It pays to be charitable, especially at the end of the year. Donating cash is always a good idea. You can also donate household goods, clothing, and other items.  Boost your business expenses. Business owners and independent contractors can buy office supplies, invest in new equipment, or pay bonuses to their employees.  Pay doctor bills, insurance premiums, buy eyeglasses, or stock up on prescription medications. You can take a deduction for medical expenses exceeding 7.5% of your adjusted gross income.  Organize your financial records. Good record keeping can really pay off at tax time. Not only will it make yo...
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By Larry Tolliver
(Keller Williams Realty)
Are you one of those who constantly think of ways to conserve energy and save more in the process? Here are a few options you can use to save more on your power bills. Heat or cool your home less. Drive or fly fewer miles. Run electrical equipment less and run less water since pumping water takes lots of electricity. Buy more locally grown food and goods that are manufactured nearby; they’re typically made with cleaner U.S. manufacturing processes, and companies use less fuel to transport them. For appliances buy the most energy-efficient devices you can afford. Look for appliances with the Environmental Protection Agency’s Energy Star Label. Since 1992 the EPA says that is has help save Americans an estimated 14 Billion dollars on energy bills. The EPA has over four dozen types of prod...
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By Larry Tolliver
(Keller Williams Realty)
From CNN Money, Wall Street Journal to Forbes Magazine they all are reporting the fall in value of the U.S dollar.  Interest rates have been slashed in order to boost our struggling economy.  The sub-prime fallout from earlier this year is in full effect.  When you purchase a home so many entities feed off a sole purchase that churns our economy.   Example, when a homebuyer completes escrow and receive the keys to their new home, they often purchase items from dept stores for their home.  Landscaping, cable or satellite, pest control, home insurance you name it are all affected by foreclosure.  When you hear about these foreclosures that are taking place through out the U.S. so many people feel the crunch as well.  Moreover, lending has been extremely tightened which deepens the problem...
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By Larry Tolliver
(Keller Williams Realty)
Solar energy is becoming more popular by the minute.  Besides providing electricity for residential homes, solar power is being used for water heaters to carports.  Die-hard conservationist for the most part primarily used solar energy.  There are examples of huge savings associated with solar energy.  Case in point:  A elderly couple from Long Beach, CA had solar panels installed at their residence.  They essentially cut their power bills from $400.00 a month to a mere $1.34.  California is one of the most aggressive states in offering consumer credits to use solar energy.  Solar Energy Industries Association trade group advise consumers to check out installers through their web site, http://www.seia.org/ and to make sure the North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners certi...
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By Larry Tolliver
(Keller Williams Realty)
Homeowners, if you want to makeover your home, but you're short on cash here are some ideas to consider.  Let's start with the yard. Landscaping does not have to be expensive, by replacing bushes and overgrown shrubs with colorful flowers will add value to your home.  Another way to modernize your home is to update your fixtures. Swapping out older light fixtures and faucets will bring a newer look; also you can save more using fixtures that support halogen light bulbs. You can save $500.00 to $600.00 by replacing your floors yourself.  Floating floors are options that can be installed on top of boards and linoleum floors this might come in handing in your rec and pantry rooms. One other way to add curb appeal to your home is repainting the trim and the front door of your home.  This wi...
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By Mary Thomas BH,MB,HB, PV, Estates LA+, Mary C. Thomas Your Agent around the Globe
( Remax Estates Properties)
The Portal opened last month in South Torrance. Before opening The Portal was refurbished with $150,000.00 worth of renovations.  All courtesy of the Coast Community Church.The Portal is for youth/teens from the ages of 12 years old to 17 years old.  The Portal has it's own Cafe with snacks, sandwiches and a coffee bar with a espresso machine.  Prices for snacks range from $.50 -$5.00.The Portal has a pool table,Video Arcade and 2 X Box 360's. Students just need ID to rent controllers for XBox.Best thing that us parents will like is that there is home work help available. The Portal will also be offering classes for boys and girls in Jewelry making,cooking computers and over 15 other classes.We are so privileged to have the community at Coast Christian funding this teen center.  Our you...
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By Julie Lockwood
(RE/MAX Execs- South Bay)
In order to achieve any goal, one must first have the Desire and Determination to reach that Goal.  We all have goals, whether we acknowledge them or not.  Everytime we say or think, "I wish ....."  "I'd like to ....." or "I want ..." we are creating a goal. Now, these goals can only become a reality if there is a desire (the want) and a determination (the belief in it) to make it happen.  Anytime a "wish" or a "want" doesn't come to pass, we can look back to our thoughts and feelings about the goal.  Did I really want that? Did I really believe in it?  The Secret is not to allow uncertainty and self-doubt to plague your mind. This can be much easier said than done.Let's say you want to retire with 2 million dollars in the bank.  You can either stuff $80,000/year under the matress for 2...
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By Larry Tolliver
(Keller Williams Realty)
We often take for granted how safe our home tap water is.  In reality it may be more harmful than you think it is.  EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) mandates that all drinking water suppliers provide an annual quality statement.  You can locate these reports at www.epa.gov.  If you can't find it there, then be sure to contact your local utility companies.  If you like to test your water for contaminants, contact your local health departments or call the Environmental Protection Agency hotline at 1-800- 426-4791.  These agencies will assist you in finding a state certified lab for water testing.  Private Laboratories charge from anywhere from $15 to more than $100 depending on how many contaminants you test for.  Households with small children or pregnant women should test their wat...
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By Larry Tolliver
(Keller Williams Realty)
The shakiest thing besides an earthquake is a preliminary title report. You can rely on these as much as winning the lottery with one dollar. These reports simply do not reveal encumbrances and liens that may be attached to the property, also they do not represent condition of title. A title insurer is not liable for inaccuracies a preliminary title report fails to uncover. In California a prelim title report is no more than an offer to issue a title insurance policy based on the contents of the prelim title report and any modifications made by the title company before the policy is issued. A prelim title report discloses special taxes, assessments, bonds, covenants, conditions, restrictions, easements, rights of way, liens and, any interest of others which may be reflected on public re...
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By Larry Tolliver
(Keller Williams Realty)
A reverse mortgage is a loan against the equity in the home that provides tax-free cash advances, but requires no payments during the term of the loan. Moreover, it doest not require an income or credit qualification. Basically all you need is to own your own home or condominium, and be 62 years of age or older. During the duration of the loan you will not have to make any monthly payments, meaning the balance will grow and equity will get smaller because the interest will accrue to your balance. Now if you decide to move from the property and it is no longer your principal residence, then loan will become due and payable. Other factors that can contribute to this are, the last surviving borrower sells or passes away. A reverse mortgage can used for everyday living expenses, such as hom...
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By Larry Tolliver
(Keller Williams Realty)
 I can’t over emphasize the importance of a Home Inspection Report. For sellers this report should be included in your listing package, for buyers this will provide a clear view of any defects the home might have. Home sellers this report should be attached to your TDS (Transfer Disclosure Statement), on receipt of the report, the seller act to eliminate some or all of the deficiencies noted in the home inspection report. . When you bring any defects to code a new report should be ordered immediately. Home sellers will be protected down the road, by demands to correct defects or to adjust the sales price in order to close escrow. The listing agent should order this report on the seller’s behalf. The listing agent will lose control over the marketing and closing process, and expose hims...
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By Julie Lockwood
(RE/MAX Execs- South Bay)
I want to share with you some business thoughts on whether this is a good time to buy or continue renting. First you must understand how basing your investment decisions on short-term results are detrimental to your long-term financial health. Let me explain:In South Torrance property values have doubled 5 times since 1970!Do you believe that prices will be higher in 7-10 years? I do.  Historically speaking, it is a known fact that properties values have gone up... and up... and up over time.  Take a moment to think about how much a home cost when you were a child. Or how much your grandparents paid for a home.  Let's assume you purchase a home for $700,000 today. We can assume in 10 years it will be worth $900,000. That's a $200,000 profit. If your down payment is 10% ($70,000) and the...
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By Larry Tolliver
(Keller Williams Realty)
As a realtor in today's market, my job has been hampered by the "bad market" cliché. Everyone seems to have the Chicken Little "the sky is falling" mentality. I definitely agree that lenders have tightened their lending criteria. However, there are still transactions being conducted on a daily occurrence. . When I prospect for clients the first question they ask me is "Is the market as bad as the experts say?" My reply is yes and no. Yes, because where foreclosures are high in numbers usually results in vacancies and short sales plunging the market south in depreciation. No, because there are markets that are high in demand and home appreciation is on the rise. Think about it, the two things that the United States government endorses is small business and home ownership. Lending across ...
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By Hayden Gerson
(HPM Financial LLC)
In the last year over 100 mortgage lenders have gone out of business due to the "mortgage meltdown" as most of you might now it is getting much more difficult to qualify for mortgages in Torrance. The reason it is difficult to qualify for your Torrance mortgage is because guidelines have changed drastically. Even reverse mortgages in Torrance are getting harder to qualify for, leaving many looking for a honest mortgage company in Torrance.Since many mortgage brokers in Torrance are going out of business, and others are not able to get you qualified, you need to call a reputable company to help you with your home mortgage in Torrance. We here at America One Mortgage Group are a national company headquartered out of Southern California. We have offices in many states and fund millions of ...
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By Larry Tolliver
(Keller Williams Realty)
When you sign a promissory note and record a trust deed, it becomes an acknowledgment of debt. A trust deed is used as the security device of preference to impose a lien on real estate. Your trust deed and notes are comprised in your loan doc's, they explain your interest rate, if your loan is fixed or adjustable, and the life and terms of your loan. A trust deed contains elements and characterizations that identifies all three parties in the trust deed. The parties in the trust deed are the owner, called the trustor (who voluntarily imposes the Trust Deed Lien on his property), the middleman, called the trustee, (who has power of sale over the property), and the lender or carryback seller, called the beneficiary (for whose benefit the trust deed lien encumbers the property). There are ...
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By Larry Tolliver
(Keller Williams Realty)
What can be more depressing, frightening and confusing when a foreclosure ends with an eviction? Here in California foreclosures has been growing steadily and with that comes an increase in evictions.There are certain ramifications that come with an eviction for example, if you are a tenant occupying a property that has been foreclosed there may be a different set of rules if you reside in a area that is rent-controlled you can't be evicted the bank will have to sell the property as a occupied property. If you are the original borrower there is no escape from the inevitable the eviction attorney will file what is called a Notice To Quit these generally expire after thirty days. The Summons and Compliant will follow next leading to a Hearing Date. Once a Judgment of possession has been g...
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By Larry Tolliver
(Keller Williams Realty)
FHA was established in 1934 and is a part of the US DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING AND URBAN DEVELOPMENT (HUD).  A loan can be Conventional, FHA or VA.  Meaning who is insuring the loan.  Conventional loans are insured by PMI (private mi companies), FHA is insured by HUD, VA loans are insured by the Veterans Administration.    FHA was established to make home purchasing easier to qualify than conventional.  FHA ARE FULL DOCUMENTATIN LOANS. With the changing in underwriting for Subprime Loans, FHA is a valuable option. For the following reasons:  FHA loans are not FICO DRIVEN.   The client can have a FICO score under 600, or no score or no credit. FHA  loans allow down payment assistance from other programs as secondsFHA has a 3% down requirement (REGARDLES IF IT IS 1 - 4 UNIT BLDG)You do not hav...
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By Larry Tolliver
(Keller Williams Realty)
In case you have been living underneath a rock the mortgage industry has been getting hammered by the subprime fallout. Adjustable Rate Mortgages has been on the rise and homeowners have not been able to keep pace with their increased interest rates. So what's next you have not made a mortgage payment in the last three or four months your lender files a NOD (Notice Of Default) it can be devastating news, but don't throw in the towel yet. Here are some viable options to consider  1 Refinance- Obtain a new loan to pay off the one in default2 Foreclosure Consultant- Seek the services of a Financial Advisor or investment counselor. For a fee they will prevent lienholders from enforcing or accelerating the note, or help reinstate the, or get an extension or last but least arrange a loan or a...
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By Larry Tolliver
(Keller Williams Realty)
Mortgagors have an agreed date for payment each month with their lender with a grace period of a few days. Some mortgagors would prefer to pay half of their monthly payment 15 days prior and the remainder on the due date. Your lender says this can done, but through a third party company, which will charge you a sign up fee for several hundreds of dollars plus a monthly fee. There are third party companies for a fee that will deduct from your checking or saving account half of your regular principal and interest payment every two weeks. This will equate to 13 monthly payments for 12 months, thus shortening your note by at least 7 years and saving a huge amount of money. Here's the catch you can do this yourself at no extra charge. Simply divide your monthly mortgage principal and interes...
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By Larry Tolliver
(Keller Williams Realty)
CA Governor Schwarzenegger sign three mortgage related bills aimed at protecting homeowners and increase affordable housing. Foreclosures in CA hit 17.408 for the three months ended June 30 up 799% from the same period last year, according to DataQuick Information Services, a La Jolla firm.      One of the three bills signed would permit state agencies to adopt emergency regulations to ensure that all mortgage lenders and brokers are subject to federal guidelines on non-traditional mortgages. Those guidelines, aimed at reducing the number of loans to people who can't afford them, apply to national banks but not to state-licensed lenders.    The second bill would make it a crime for appraisers to become involved in valuing properties for transactions in which their compensation is tied t...
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