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Laguna Niguel Real Estate – What a Change!

Laguna Niguel Real Estate – What a Change!

Home Sales in Laguna Niguel remain strong throughout 2012, says Ron Buck, Realtor®. Ever since the national pundits called the bottom of the market early this year, Ron Buck, Realtor, has seen buyers coming out of the proverbial woodwork. Currently in Laguna Niguel, Ron Buck, Laguna Niguel Realtor, reveals that there are only 99 active listings of ALL price ranges. Three of those are bank-owned REO properties and 14 are short sales. Total distressed property inventory is 17% of the Laguna Niguel market. Ron Buck, Aliso Viejo and Laguna Niguel Realtor, put a new listing on the market Saturday in Laguna Niguel in the mid $700’s. In a four hour open house Ron Buck had 12 Realtors with clients show the property and another dozen or so families without Realtors. Today there are only four condos under $300,000 and 41 detached homes under $1 million. As of December 1st there are 198 homes in backup or pending status. Twice as many in escrow as active. As I have said before, this time of year can work out well for sellers. Buyers in Laguna Niguel have been asking me for four years about the “shadow inventory”. What about that? It is Ron Buck’s expert opinion that if the inventory were to quadruple in January there would be enough pent-up demand to absorb all of the new inventory. Ron Buck, Rancho Niguel and San Joachin Hills Reator, has heard now from more than one buyer that the “flippers” are driving up the market in an unethical or malicious way. This of course is not true. Buyers are in control and if...

Everything in Real Estate is Negotiable

Everything in real estate is negotiable. Ron Buck, Realtor, has heard this saying all his life, even before working in real estate. It is true. If you want to include personal property like your Van Gogh painting with the house, it can be negotiated. As it turns out each area of the country has its own quirks on what is normal or customary in contracts and negotiations. Ron Buck, Realtor, an expert on southern California real estate, says sellers usually buy a title insurance policy for the buyer to insure that the buyer has free and clear title (the buyer purchases a secondary policy for the lender), but in the east that is not the case. Ron Buck, Realtor, flew back to Boston a few years ago to help his daughter purchase a condo. Ron Buck was flabbergasted to find that the area normally did not include a title policy unless the buyer wanted to buy her own. At Ron’s daughter’s closing there were two attorneys present but no agents. The attorneys were gabbing and Ron Buck found mistakes in the buyer’s settlement statement which they would not have found. In California the attorneys write the generic DRE contract but Realtors are allowed to fill in the contracts and no attorneys are involved unless the principles request them. When Ron Buck was a top real estate broker in Colorado, water rights, wells and septic systems were super important. Not so much in the OC. In Colorado the time frames associated with due diligence ended at midnight on the date specified in the contract. Presently in California, the time frames...

Laguna Niguel Housing and Buyer Search Tools

Charts are fascinating to Ron Buck, Realtor, and Ron finds them very impactful. Here are a couple of them which will illustrate the inventory situation for Laguna Niguel homes for sale. Sorry about the cropping of the titles, but Ron Buck thinks these charts are important! Ron Buck’s research reveals that the supply of active homes is down for many reasons. One is that there are fewer coming to market and a second is that homes that are priced right are selling fast. The second chart shows days on market which is very low. This information comes from Clarus market metrics. Ron Buck, Realtor, thinks reality is more severe than this chart shows. Buyers are very frustrated this fall because of this low inventory. One thing that exacerbates the situation is that buyers are looking at one line sites that are not up to date. Keep in mind that most on line home sites are just lead generators which take listings from the MLS and then sell the leads back to Realtors. (Yes, Ron Buck is only slightly bitter about that.) Because the purpose is to generate leads some of the sites are not particularly worried about accuracy. Ron Buck pays for enhancement on some public sites and Ron Buck knows that he has closed listings appearing on some of them. Some sites are not clear about which homes are already in pending status. If your Realtor is sending you a direct feed from the MLS then that is the most accurate. If he or she is not, contact Ron Buck, Realtor. Ron will get you on a free...

Surviving a Home Remodel

Except for a few lots in San Joaquin Hills, the city of Laguna Niguel is built out. Ron Buck, Realtor, says there are also some custom build lots in South Peak and Laguna Sur. There are a lot of homes built in the 70s, like the Niguel Hills area, with no HOA fees and larger lots. The 1980s was a very active building time. Neighborhoods like Rolling Hills, Beacon Hill, Niguel Summit and Rancho Niguel were mostly built in the mid to late 80s. The newest neighborhoods are San Joaquin Hills and Hillcrest Estates. While Ron Buck knows that location and views are always on the top of the list for most buyers, Ron Buck would like to tell everyone that the condition is obviously very important. Some things are more difficult to update, like small closets, low ceilings and small garages. This becomes more like functional obsolescence. Ron Buck, Realtor, showed two beautifully located homes today, built in the late 80s, which had limited upgrades. One property had all new expensive flooring but the cabinetry was untouched in the kitchen and baths, and the windows were original. The other property had some new windows and even a small addition to the home but everything else was original (and “tired”, I like to say). Maybe it is because Ron Buck’s family is living through a bathroom remodel right now that all this come to mind again. Ron Buck’s mid-80s home has had a new roof, new windows, new furnace and new kitchen. Oh, Ron Buck would like to add the slab leak that Ron Buck’s family had to live...

What Exactly Is “Price Per Square Foot”?

This is surely one of the most often asked questions Ron Buck, Realtor encounters as a working Realtor. The other most frequently asked question is, “How long has it been on the market?” Ron Buck, Realtor, has always been fascinated by price per square foot. Here are a few things Ron Buck thinks you should keep in mind. The price per square foot is very much neighborhood specific. In a given neighborhood or a given area the price is fairly uniform. What you will see within that neighborhood is that the smallest house has the highest price per square foot and the largest house has the lowest price per square foot. That number is very specific to city, price range, finishes, view, ocean view, style and age. Also it varies based on whether the home is tract or custom. Here are a few examples. For detached homes from $500K to $750K sold price in the last quarter in Laguna Niguel averaged $291 per sq. ft. For homes from $750K to $1 million the price was $301. Homes from $1 million to $1.5 million the square foot price was $380. For homes from $1.5 million to $2 million the price was $354. For homes above $2 million the price was $444. For Dana Point sales from $1 million to $1.5 million the price was $413 per square foot. (10% more than LN). Ron Buck knows that one story homes usually sell for more per square foot, and ocean view homes always sell for 10% to 20% more. Older homes in general sell for less unless they have been remodeled completely....

Real Estate Season – Back To School

If you have been busy with summer vacations, kids’ swimming lessons and visiting family you may not be up to date on real estate in Laguna Niguel or the OC in general. You may have caught the news release from NAR (National Association of Realtors) which gave much-improved real estate statistics. Numbers of homes in escrow and the number of homes closed are both up from a year ago. In fact the stocks for new home builders went up with the news as well. At the risk of sounding like a broken record the inventory is down 40% from the beginning of the year. Ron Buck, Realtor®, says, “Remember that the numbers reported in the media are 30 to 60 days old. I think the most recent NAR numbers were for July figures.” To really get the facts call a full time Realtor® like Ron Buck who is in the market every day. “We Realtors feel the pulse of the market and deal with the issues of inventory and interest rates every day. We interview buyers coming through open houses, fight the battle with appraisers and underwriters, advise sellers how to position their product on the market for a good sale and watch the inventory numbers like a heart monitor.” Adds Ron Buck, Laguna Niguel real estate expert. In Ron Buck’s sixteen years of residential real estate he has always noticed that August seems to be the slowest month of the year for real estate activity. The reason is obvious. Families usually want to be moved and in their new homes before school starts and many other potential buyers...