Best North County Realtor For 3 Reasons

 
Kara Brem is The Best North County Realtor For 3 Reasons

Reason #1 — Kara Brem provides smooth expertise.

I take a consultative approach with my clients. There can be lots of moving parts within real estate, in North County especially. Such as securing a loan, escrow, home inspection, and appraisals  — just to name a few. Buying and selling properties in North County is not for the faint of heart. However, alongside my coastal and inland North County expertise, you will go through from escrow to sale with ease.

 

You’ll experience comfort and efficiency as we explore the North County market.

The North County real estate market has rapidly increased in interested buyers and sellers, and is changing quickly still. North County is divided into coastal and inland communities, with coastal cities being Oceanside, Carlsbad, Encinitas, Del Mar, and Solana Beach, and inland cities being Escondido, San Marcos, Poway, and Vista. As the best North County Realtor, you’ll enjoy a smooth and efficient process while buying or selling from Del Mar to Vista.

 

I aim to find your perfect home or sale.

I have a passion for my North County community that drives my services. Navigating through the Encinitas to Oceanside housing market is always joyful — my clients’ priorities become my own. It has been a blessing to be the best North County Realtor for so many, especially in the unique gem of North County San Diego.

 

Reason #2 — Kara Brem is organized.

The real estate process has many twists and turns. But if led by my expertise, you’ll be expectant and aware of each step. This means, for every transaction, I am hands-on. I bring to-do lists, well-developed itineraries, and timely scheduled meetings all with your objectives in mind. Your goals will be met as we put all efforts and resources towards them.

 

I lay a foundation for my services based on your objectives and dare I say dreams.

My ability to do this with ease has made my client base built primarily on referrals. I continually get referred from family to friends and vice-versa — an incredibly rewarding of compliment. I pursued a Realtor career to help people. There is no greater satisfaction during the week than leaving my clients happy and satisfied, as well as more familiar with beautiful North County.

 

Reason #3 — Kara Brem is a killer negotiator.

My objectives are set on your expectations, this is why I’m great at negotiating for you. Negotiations may seem stressful to others, but it is a vital part of being the best North County Realtor. From Solana Beach to Poway, I live and breath North County real estate and don’t back down when it comes to my clients.

 

I am your advocate for every step taken, and I negotiate with no fear.

I know trust is earned, and I have proven to be the best North County Realtor from just that fact. Buying and selling properties can be an emotionally taxing experience. As a trusted advocate for my clients, I show up overly prepared and ready for anything.

 

I love getting record-breaking sales or superbly negotiated buys for my clients.

From unexpected repairs to getting the best estimates, I am known for being resourceful and well-organized. My work ethic is results-driven — I don’t reach my goals unless you reach yours. As an experienced North County Realtor from Cardiff-by-the-Sea to Carlsbad, I have a thorough knowledge of the North County market.

 

Enjoy the best North County Realtor experience.

Choose Kara Brem’s services, and you’ll get the most sophisticated real estate agent in North San Diego County.


Posted on May 21, 2019 at 1:47 pm
Kara Brem | Posted in Uncategorized |

Renting vs. buying. What’s best for you?

The debate about whether it makes more financial sense to rent or buy has been raging for decades. Advocates of buying argue that when you pay rent you’re paying for someone else’s mortgage. When you buy, you are making an investment, which can significantly increase in value every year you live in the home.

Supporters of renting say that the extra costs associated with owning a home, such as interest payments, taxes, maintenance, can add up. They add that there’s no guarantee that those expenses will be recouped when the house is sold. Instead of investing in a home, you may be better off investing your savings in stocks, bonds, and other financial securities that hold less risk.

Matthew Gardner, our Chief Economist, forecasts, that we will not break 5% for 30-year fixed Mortgage rates for 2019, and likely won’t break it next year.

This means that getting a mortgage is relatively cheap, raising the question, ‘Is it really worth it to keep renting?’

Even if interest rates stay low, whether to rent or buy has a lot to do with each person’s specific situation. Here are a few considerations to make as you decide.

 

What’s the real estate situation in your city?

Industry groups put out reports every quarter stating the average national sales price for a home, and the average monthly payment for a U.S. rental. These reports are typically based on an average of all the cities in the U.S. But what really matters is what the numbers show when you dig into them on a local level.

Investigate the local sales and rental markets, and you’ll see there are some cities that fall well below that average, and some that rise far above it. When comparing housing costs, be sure to base your evaluation on what’s happening in your city and neighborhood, not the nationwide averages.

 

How long do you expect to live there?

If you don’t plan to be living in the same place for at least five years, renting is probably your best bet financially. But if you think you’re ready to settle down for as long as 7 to 10 years, chances are very good that any home you purchase will appreciate during that time even if the economy runs into some bumps along the way.

 

What’s the mortgage rate?

One of the other key factors to consider is the cost of your loan (the interest you’ll pay the lender). Fortunately, our Chief Economist, Matthew Gardner, does not expect interest rates to hit or break 5 percent, meaning money is relatively cheap.

Your mortgage rate will depend on how much money you have saved, your credit score, and other factors, so make sure to talk to a loan officer before you start looking for a home. Being pre-approved for a mortgage narrows down your price range and helps strengthen your offer when it comes time to compete for your new home.

 

Can you pay a bit more?

It can be advantageous to work a lower monthly payment to the bank so that you can pay a little more than the payment.

For example, if you can afford to pay a little extra towards your mortgage bill each month, say $300 more per month, on a 30-year, $300,000 loan, can knock eight years off the life of the loan and reduce your final bill by more than $63,000. That’s savings you would never see if you rented.

 

Will you need to make repairs or improvements?

Buying a fixer-upper may seem like a great way to get a deal on a house, but if the money you spend on the repairs is too great, your profit could be diminished when it comes time to sell. The same is true for remodeling and improvement projects.

Additionally, you can work with your Mortgage lender for a repair loan. This can help you get that lot you want, and help you pay for the repairs.

But ultimately, if you can only afford a home that demands major improvements, and you don’t have the skills to do much of the work yourself, it’s probably better to rent.

 

Do you have other ways to invest?

Many see a home purchase as an easy way to invest—a place where they can generate savings through home equity. But others say you can make more money renting an apartment and investing your savings in stocks, bonds, and other financial securities.

This is where a financial advisor might come in. They’ll be able to break down what you need to do in order to get the best return on your investments. They’ll also be able to see the big picture when it comes to your money.

 

Can you rent part of the house?

Speaking of a diverse portfolio, let your investment work for you. If you buy a house that includes a rental (extra bedroom, mother-in-law unit, etc.), you could be the landlord instead of paying the landlord. With that rental income, you could pay off the mortgage faster and contribute more to your savings. But, of course, you need to be willing to share your home with a tenant and take on the responsibilities of being a landlord or working with a professional property manager to help you with those duties.

 

Making your decision

To make your decision about whether to rent or buy easier, input the key financial facts regarding your situation into this Realtor.com Rent vs. Buy Calculator:  For help making sense of the results and analyzing other factors, contact me to discuss your options.


Posted on May 21, 2019 at 10:58 am
Kara Brem | Posted in Uncategorized |

What’s Holding You Back From Buying?


Posted on May 13, 2019 at 8:57 am
Kara Brem | Posted in Uncategorized |

Slaying the Largest Homebuying Myths Today

Slaying the Largest Homebuying Myths Today [INFOGRAPHIC] | MyKCM

Some Highlights:

  • The average down payment for first-time homebuyers is only 6%!
  • Mortgage interest rates have been on the decline since November! Hop in now to lock in a low rate!
  • 88% of property managers raised their rents in the last 12 months!
  • The average credit score on approved loans continues to fall across many loan types!

Posted on April 30, 2019 at 10:54 am
Kara Brem | Posted in Uncategorized |

Are Low Interest Rates Here to Stay?

Are Low Interest Rates Here to Stay? | Simplifying The Market

Interest rates for a 30-year fixed rate mortgage have been on the decline since November, now reaching lows last seen in January 2018. According to Freddie Mac’s latest Primary Mortgage Market Survey, rates came in at 4.12% last week!

This is great news for anyone who is planning on buying a home this spring! Freddie Mac had this to say,

“Mortgage interest rates have been steadily declining since the start of 2019. These lower mortgage interest rates combined with a strong labor market should attract prospective homebuyers this spring and could help the housing sector regain its momentum later in the year.”

To put the low rates in perspective, the average for 2018 was 4.6%! The chart below shows the recent drop, and also shows where the experts at Freddie Mac believe rates will be by the end of 2019.

Are Low Interest Rates Here to Stay? | Simplifying The Market

Bottom Line

If you plan on buying a home this year, let’s get together to start your home search to ensure you can lock in these historically low rates today!


Posted on April 23, 2019 at 9:16 am
Kara Brem | Posted in Real estate | Tagged , , , , ,

3 Graphs that Show What You Need to Know About Today’s Real Estate Market

3 Graphs that Show What You Need to Know About Today's Real Estate Market | MyKCM

The Housing Market has been a hot-topic in the news lately. Depending on which media outlet you watch, it can start to be a bit confusing to understand what’s really going on with interest rates and home prices!

The best way to show what’s really going on in today’s real estate market is to go straight to the data! We put together the following three graphs along with a quote from Chief Economists that have their finger on the pulse of what each graph illustrates.

Interest Rates:

“The real estate market is thawing in response to the sustained decline in mortgage rates and rebound in consumer confidence – two of the most important drivers of home sales. Rising sales demand coupled with more inventory than previous spring seasons suggests that the housing market is in the early stages of regaining momentum.” – Sam Khater, Chief Economist at Freddie Mac

3 Graphs that Show What You Need to Know About Today's Real Estate Market | Keeping Current Matters

Income:

“A powerful combination of lower mortgage rates, more inventory, rising income and higher consumer confidence is driving the sales rebound.” – Lawrence Yun, Chief Economist at NAR

3 Graphs that Show What You Need to Know About Today's Real Estate Market | Keeping Current Matters

Home Prices:

“Price growth has been too strong for several years, fueled in part by abnormally low interest rates. A mild deceleration in home sales and Home Price Index growth is actually healthy, because it will calm excessive price growth — which has pushed many markets, particularly in the West, into overvalued territory.” – Ralph DeFranco, Global Chief Economist at Arch Capital Services Inc.

3 Graphs that Show What You Need to Know About Today's Real Estate Market | Keeping Current Matters

Bottom Line

These three graphs indicate good news for the spring housing market! Interest rates are low, income is rising, and home prices have experienced mild deceleration over the last 9 months. If you are considering buying a home or selling your house, let’s get together to chat about our market!


Posted on April 9, 2019 at 10:20 am
Kara Brem | Posted in Uncategorized |

Dollar-Stretching Ideas for Couples Taking the Next Step

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Image courtesy of Pixabay

Article courtesy of:

Natalie Jones

natalie_jones@homeownerbliss.info

 www.homeownerbliss.info

Are you and your partner ready to cohabitate?  Making that decision is often exciting and nerve-wracking at the same time.  Thankfully, keeping a few dollar-stretching strategies in mind means outfitting your new place can add to the fun without adding to your stress.

 

Out with the old

Every household has basics, so most couples discover they have several duplicate items when they move in together.  Take some time to sort through what you both have, decide what you need to acquire, and think about what items are due for an upgrade.  Pay special attention to tablecloths, gadgetry, cookware, and the like.  NBC News points out kitchen items in particular need routine replacement, with non-stick cookware warranting extra consideration, since worn or peeling cookware should be thrown out and replaced.  Make some notes to ensure you have all your basics covered, and develop a shopping list for the items you need or want to purchase together.  You can buy everything from new linens to small appliances from retailers like Kohl’s, and on top of a great selection, Kohl’s promo codes help you make the most of your budget.

 

Color your world

With your essentials in order, addressing aesthetics is a logical next step.  Many couples add a fresh coat of paint to their new digs to give it their personal touch, so sit down together and discuss what shades in which rooms sound appealing.  Elle Decor points out many of the hottest color trends incorporate hues from the great outdoors, such as shades borrowed from woodlands in earthy browns, rich greens, and deep blues.  If you never painted before or haven’t done so as a joint project, brush up on basic how-to instructions, gather your supplies, and do your shopping someplace like Ace Hardware, where you can find everything you need for your project as well as take advantage of great deals.

 

Bedroom basics

Refreshing your bedroom can help you get started on the right foot.  Beyond the walls, consider revamping the color scheme in hues you both like, whether it’s soothing tones of teal and tan, cheerful coral and fuschia, or bold black and red.  Think accents, sheets, and even furniture colors.  And while you’re at it, consider investing in a new mattress and foundation.  It’s the perfect symbol of your decision to share space.  Some experts recommend replacing mattresses every seven to 10 years anyway, so if yours falls into that age range, all the more reason to start anew.  Then select appropriate linens to fit your new bed and colors.  You can shop online for the whole shebang from stores like Overstock, offering everything you need to dress your bedroom in style, just check out their current sales to ensure you snag great prices.

 

Sharing storage

Divvying up your closet space can seem simple at first, but many couples quickly discover making room for two sets of clothes can be a challenge.  There are plenty of ways you can improve the storage you have by adding drawers and shelving, or you can install a closet system.  If you or your partner is pretty handy, Family Handyman points out you can install a DIY closet system in a weekend, which can be a fun project to take on together.  Home Depot offers a wide variety of closet organization solutions, which you can DIY or have installed for you.  Take some measurements, make some sketches, and check Home Depot’s current offers to see what will work well in your space as well as your budget.

 

Combining your lives can be challenging, so make sure putting your home together isn’t a major financial stressor.  Look for smart and economical ways to outfit your home, make decisions together, and add some new things to signify your change.  When you’re taking that next step, it’s a great way to keep things light, positive, and fun.


Posted on March 3, 2019 at 8:40 am
Kara Brem | Posted in Uncategorized |

What are the disadvantages of renting? Survey says…


Posted on February 12, 2019 at 3:09 pm
Kara Brem | Posted in Uncategorized |

You Do Not Need 20% Down to Buy a Home

One More Time... You Do Not Need 20% Down to Buy a Home | MyKCM

The largest obstacle renters face when planning to buy a home is saving for a down payment. This challenge is amplified by rising rents, which has eaten into the amount of money renters have leftover for savings each month after paying expenses.

In combination with higher rents, survey after survey has shown that non-homeowners (renters and those living rent-free with family or friends) believe they need to save upwards of 20% for their down payment!

According to the “Barriers to Accessing Homeownership” study commissioned in partnership between the Urban Institute, Down Payment Resource, and Freddie Mac, 39% of non-homeowners and 30% of those who already own a home believe they need more than a 20% down payment.

The percentage of those who are aware of low down payment programs (those under 5%) is surprisingly low at 12% for non-homeowners and 13% for homeowners.

In a recent Convergys Analytics report, they found that 49% of renters believe they need at least a 20% down payment.

The median down payment on loans approved in 2018 was only 5%! Those waiting until they have over 20% may already have enough saved to buy now!

There are over 45 million millennials (33%) who are mortgage ready right now, meaning their income, debt, and credit scores would all allow them to qualify for a mortgage today!

Bottom Line

If your five-year plan includes buying a home, let’s get together to determine what it will take to make that plan a reality. You may be closer to your dream than you realize!


Posted on February 5, 2019 at 3:23 pm
Kara Brem | Posted in Uncategorized |

Tips for Moving Into a Smaller House as a Senior

 

 

For many seniors, there comes a time when the expense and upkeep of a big home no longer seem realistic. All of your kids have moved out, and suddenly, your multi-bedroom house feels excessively large and empty. Plus, it may be difficult to keep up with mortgage payments if you’re expecting a lower income during retirement. Whether downsizing is a financial necessity or an emotional decision, here’s how to tackle the process without getting overwhelmed.

Do Online Research

Before you start looking at houses in person, narrow down your options by doing some research online. Search the local housing market on sites or reach out to a Realtor to get a feel for house prices in your desired area. Explore listings in your preferred size range and location so you can come up with a realistic budget for your new home.

Think far ahead as you look at homes, considering the possibility that the needs of you and your spouse may change over time. One-story homes can be much more accessible for you and your friends down the line. You should also take time to research the neighborhood and pay attention to the house’s proximity to grocery stores, leisure centers, and public transportation.

Plan for Your Storage Needs

If you’re moving to an apartment or condo, you may not have the attic, basement, or even the closet space that you’re used to. Look for a nearby for an affordable self-storage unit so you aren’t left crowding boxes and furniture into your new home. Some simple online research can help you find the best deals in your area.

Go Through Your Possessions Methodically

One of the hardest parts about downsizing is getting rid of things you’ve had for decades. Apartment Guide recommends looking at pictures of clutter-free homes in magazines or do a search on google for inspiration before starting your own purge. This will mentally prepare you for getting rid of all the stuff you don’t need cluttering up your new, smaller space.

As you declutter, go room by room and sort items into no more than five piles: keep, donate, sell, gift, and throw away. Don’t be afraid to let go of things that are useful but not particularly necessary in your own life. Likewise, don’t keep things out of obligation or feelings of guilt. While you’re cutting the clutter, keep a floor plan of your new home nearby so you can plan out your rooms and ensure your furniture will fit.

Pack Like a Pro

Protect your items during your move and make them easier to unpack later by trying out some expert packing tips. For example, socks make great padding for glasses and mugs, while oven mitts are perfect for transporting knives a little more safely. Secure entire desk drawers and kitchen storage trays with plastic wrap for much faster unpacking later. Also, keep your clothing on hangers and simply slip a garbage bag over them for protection. Remember to pack an essentials box of everything you need during your first day and night in your new house.

Follow a Moving Checklist

There is a lot to remember to do before moving day. For example, you need to update your mailing address with the post office, find a new doctor, and transfer your utilities. Follow a moving checklist (or hire a senior move manager for around $316 per day) to avoid forgetting important tasks. One of your moving tasks should involve researching moving companies at least two months before your move. This gives you plenty of time to find the help you need within your budget. Learn about how to spot rogue moving companies so you can avoid being scammed, especially if you’re moving long distance.

Moving is exhausting for anyone. But moving into a smaller home can be especially emotional as you say goodbye to personal objects that have surrounded you for much of your life. For this reason, it’s important to take things slow while you sort through your possessions and search for the perfect place to spend your golden years.

 


Posted on January 16, 2019 at 10:00 am
Kara Brem | Posted in Uncategorized |