Brandon Montemayor

Brandon Montemayor

Forecasts for a slow 2016 real estate season have been greatly exaggerated.

Late last year, some financial analysts worried that a rise in the base interest rates by the Federal Reserve would Santa Clarita Real Estate Market Updatetrigger a reversal of fortunes in the real estate industry. Rates would rise, loans would be harder to get, houses would begin to languish on the market, and home prices would drop.

However, that turned out to not happen…at all!

Interest rates, while bumping back and forth between a few fractions of a percentage point, are still holding below 4 percent, despite the quarter percent rise in the base rate the Federal Reserve implemented in December.  Continue reading

Home buyers are not waiting to see what happens with interest rates.

In what almost defies odds, despite the Federal Reserve’s decision to raise their base interest rate in December, home buyers are finding that their Santa Clarita Real Estatepurchasing power is at its peak with nearly historic low interest rates.

According to a recent study, home mortgage applications jumped by nearly 9 percent in January of 2016. Borrowers are clearly seeing the advantages of acting now, rather than sitting on the fence.

And why not? Home prices on average rose 10 and a half percent in 2015. This average includes both single family homes and condominiums sold in the Santa Clarita Valley. The median price of a single family home rose 8.1 percent, while condos rose on average 12.9 percent.

I think I’m ready to buy a house. What do I do first?

The best thing to do, of course, is to contact Montemayor & Associates, and we’ll get the ball rolling to find the right lender who can let you know what your qualifying home mortgage rate and amount may be. Yes, you should do this FIRST before you begin looking at homes.  Continue reading

Despite the Federal Reserve raising their interest rates, home loan prices are at an almost record low.

2016 is off to a pretty good start, real estate-wise. Single family home prices rose $38,000 on average last year, and we’re already off to a brisk start in Montemayor and AssociatesJanuary.

Interestingly enough, there was potential “doom and gloom” on the horizon as spelled out by some analysts late last year in light of the Federal Reserve’s decision to finally raise the rate they charge lenders to borrow money.

You’d think then, that mortgage rates would instantly rise as a result, right? Wrong!

In fact, 2016 has begun with home loan interest rates once again hovering near record lows. Having dropped below 4 percent, home owners, buyers, and sellers are taking advantage of what may be an “extended reprieve” from rising rates. Continue reading

Take a tour of Santa Clarita’s best holiday lights courtesy of Santa Clarita Transit.

It’s that time of year again! There are many neighborhoods in the Santa Clarita Valley that go all out for the holidays,

Homestead Place

with neighbors getting together to light up entire streets with Christmas cheer.

Of course, getting around some of these neighborhoods occasionally poses a challenge, due to the popularity created by these decorated streets. This year, the City of Santa Clarita is offering to take residents on a trolley ride through some of the most popular holiday light events.

For two weekends in December, the trolley will be available beginning at 6PM, with more pickup times at 7:30PM and 8:45PM Friday and Saturday, December 11th and 12th, and again the following Friday and Saturday.  Continue reading

Lots of economic indicators left “in the air” as we near the end of 2015 gives pause to speculation about the real estate market.

As we hurtle toward the final month of 2015, we’re seeing some interesting signs in the Santa Clarita real estate market. Interest rates, while still very First time home buyer questions.low, have inched just above 4 percent, and housing prices for both condos and single family homes have leveled off.

That being said, it’s not unusual for housing prices to dip slightly in the final quarter of the year, with the summer buying season behind us and the holidays just ahead. The question still remains, however: Have Santa Clarita home prices reached their peak?

To be clear, prices have only dipped slightly between September and October of this year. The median price of a single family home still holds firm at the half million dollar mark, and condos are averaging prices in the low $300,000’s. We’re nowhere near the peak we achieved in the Spring of 2006, when single family home prices averaged $643,000 before they began to fall at the outset of the recession which began a year later.  Continue reading

Mortgage rates will hold steady for the time being.

Slow economic growth over the summer has motivated the Federal Reserve to remain cautious, holding off on

Brandon Montemayor

Brandon Montemayor

proposed rate hikes for now.

National Gross Domestic Product (GDP) grew slower than expected over the summer. As such, the Fed has made plans to raise the rate of money borrowed by lending institutions in an effort to stave off runaway inflation, based on higher economic projections that have yet to be met.

Good News For Home Buyers

Interest rates have held at under 4 percent for the bulk of past year. As of the date of this article, mortgage interest rates are as follows:

  • 30 year fixed-rate mortgage: 3.87%
  • 15 year fixed-rate mortgage: 3.15%
  • FHA 30 year fixed: 3.60%
  • Jumbo 30 year fixed: 3.67%
  • 5/1 fixed adjustable rate mortgage: 2.93%

Continue reading

One of the best kept secrets in Santa Clarita offers you breathtaking views of both valleys.

Photo courtesy George Cummings

San Fernando Valley from the top of Bear Divide.

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to see both the Santa Clarita Valley AND the San Fernando Valley from the same place? Did you know that, on exceptionally clear days, you can catch a glimpse of the Los Angeles skyline and even the Pacific Ocean from the SCV? Continue reading

Scarcity of rents along with high demand puts landlords in the driver’s seat. Is it time to take control of your destiny?

A recent survey from rent.com showed that property managers will hike rent prices on average by 8 percent by the end of the year. The same survey Montemayor and Associatesshows available rentals at a 20 year low, and nowhere is this fact made more prevalent by what’s available for rent in the Santa Clarita Valley.

As of the date of this article, the Southland Regional Association of Realtors Multiple Listing Service shows a total of 39 active rentals listed by real estate agents in the Santa Clarita Valley. These rentals make up available properties offered by owners that include single family homes and condominiums. It does not include privately managed or advertised properties outside the MLS.

According to the MLS reports, there are no single family homes available within the city of Santa Clarita that are under $2000. What does this mean? The answer is obvious. The number of available SCV rentals for sale is low, and prices are continually going up.  Continue reading

Single family home sales up nearly 16 percent from 2014.

Recent statistics provided by the Southland Regional Association of Realtors provided continued positive news for the Santa Clarita real estate Santa Clarita Real Estate Market Updatemarket.

The median price of single family homes in the SCV rang in at $523,000 in August, up 2.7 percent from the previous month, and nearly 7 percent from the previous year.

Condos fell only slightly in August, but are still strong year over year, with median equity increasing by 14 percent from August of 2014.

These numbers reflect continued positive growth in our economy, as well as interest rates still holding at historically low levels. We can also attribute the rise in prices to the still relatively low number of available homes for sale in the Santa Clarita Valley. There was a reported 675 active listings in the SCV at the end of August, which is about half of what would be considered a “balanced” market. Continue reading

Want to sell your home fast and for top dollar? Stay away from these seller pitfalls.

Prices are up, interest rates are low. It should be easy to sell your home, right? Under the best conditions, yes, it is. However, some sellers make bad Montemayor and Associateschoices that can cost them thousands of dollars, or even cost them the ability to get their home sold at all.

Three common mistakes sellers should avoid.

Selling your home yourself.

“Hey. I can do this myself,” you’re thinking. “Why should I pay all that money to a real estate agent?” Okay. So you plunk a “For Sale By Owner” sign in your yard. Maybe you throw something on Craigslist or other public internet media advertising your home. A few questions for you: How do you know the “buyer” approaching your door is qualified to purchase your home? Better yet, what criteria are you using to determine your home price? Finally, what do you know about title, taxes, escrow, insurance, contingencies, and addendums, just to name a few? Continue reading

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Client Testimonials
I had specific needs for my new home. Brandon was very patient with my unique situation and flexible when it kept changing. He showed me so many houses, but with little inventory, none of them were quite perfect or they had too much HOA or Mello Roos. Finally when we found The One, no HOA, no Mello Roos, it had been on the market for 4 days and I made an offer that morning. I was sure the sellers would give it to someone else but Brandon worked hard to make sure they accepted my offer and by that night, the house was mine. Had it not been for Brandon I would still be searching for a house because so far, there is still nothing better than mine.
Lisa G. , Saugus
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