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Are Homeowners Still Using Their Equity as Their Own Personal ATM?


Fortunately for our economy, homeowners aren’t still using their equity as their own personal ATM.

Are people still using the equity in their homes as their own personal ATM?

Back in 2006, the total amount of equity people were taking out of their home and using as a cash advance was $326 billion. Nowadays, though, the numbers show that people are more careful with how much equity they take out of their home and what they use that equity for.


This trend shows how much better our economy has gotten and why we won’t see a repeat of the 2007/2008 market crash.

Nationally, 48% of all homes have replenished 50% of their equity, and we currently only have about $70 billion that’s being used as cash refinancing. That’s a huge improvement—not only compared to 2006, but also compared to 2007 when the total was $240 billion.

Instead of purchasing RVs and paying for vacations, people are focusing on making home improvements. This trend shows how much better our economy has gotten and why we won’t see a repeat of the 2007/2008 market crash.

If you have any more questions about the state of our current market or you have any real estate needs I can help you with, don’t hesitate to reach out to me. I look forward to speaking to you.

The Benefits of Buying a Condo in Southern California


Today we’ll cover a few pros and cons of purchasing a condo in Southern California.

If you’re considering buying a condo, you should be aware of the pros and cons of doing so before you make your final decision.

One of the greatest benefits of buying a condo in Southern California is that it affords buyers the chance to live in locations where a single-family home would be astronomically expensive. A condo is a great alternative to a single-family home if you want to live within walking distance to certain amenities.

Another benefit of condo living is the security it provides. Condos are usually gated and include a parking structure, meaning residents have a level of protection not always available to people who live in single-family homes.

And speaking of practical benefits, living in a condo also means that many maintenance tasks are taken care of for you. Condo residents don’t need to worry about mowing their lawn or cleaning the pool. These things, as well as certain utilities, are covered under the monthly condo fee that residents pay. These fees, which are split up between all the building’s units, also gives residents access to various amenities. The fact that fees are split up could be viewed as a drawback, but only if you’re living in a condo with a low number of residents.


Condos are a great alternative to a single-family home if you want to live within walking distance to certain amenities.

But what about financing? The lending process for condo purchases has historically been a point of concern for buyers, but, recently, condo financing has been made much easier than in the past.

There are currently three main loan options for condos: conventional, FHA, and VA. Conventional and FHA loans both offer lower down payment options, but FHA loans do carry a higher level of restrictions. Even so, many of these restrictions have been made more lenient in the recent past. The best way to know which loan type is best for you is to discuss your individual circumstances with your lender.

Ultimately, the decision of whether or not to purchase a condo will depend heavily on your lifestyle and goals.

If you have any other questions or would like more information, feel free to give us a call or send us an email. We look forward to hearing from you soon.

A Strategy to Help You Find the Right Home at the Right Price


If you’re a homebuyer, I have a strategy you can follow that will allow you to take advantage of our current market.

As a buyer, what kind of strategy should you use to find the right home at the right price in our shifting market? There are a few keys to keep in mind.

First, have a number in mind of what you want to spend on a monthly basis for your mortgage. Lending is opening up, and there are mortgage options available that will allow you to have the terms of your payment bought down. Although home prices have come down recently, they’re not going to drop, and since interest rates are rising, you’re better off buying now than waiting, say, six months. Even if you do wait and find a lower-priced property, you’ll still end up paying more for it because you’ll have a higher mortgage payment.

Next, make sure you know what you want in your future home. In this regard, it helps to sit down and write out a list of things you want versus things you need.


Since interest rates are rising, you’re better off buying now than waiting, say, six months.

Also, be sure to minimize the number of contingencies in your offer. The more you can minimize your contingencies, the more attractive your offer will be. The contingencies in your offer help to protect you, but they don’t offer the seller any protection, and they can prevent you from closing in a timely manner. In addition to minimizing your contingencies, you can also make your offer more attractive by doing things like getting pre-approved and putting down a high down payment.

Lastly, be ready to walk if the deal just doesn’t work. If the price is just too high or the location doesn’t work, don’t get emotional about it—know what you need and know when you should walk away.

If you’d like to start your home buying journey and you want to talk more about developing a strategy that will find you the right home at the right price, don’t hesitate to give me a call. I’d love to help you get started.

If you have any other real estate needs, feel free to reach out to me as well. I look forward to speaking to you.