BEWARE – Looking to Rent – Don’t be Scammed!!!!

BEWARE - BEWARE - BEWARE!!!!!! I just received a call on one of my 2 listings .  The caller was looking for a home to rent and said my listing  was listed for rent.  He wanted to see it right away.  Only thing is  I do not have any properties for rent, only for sale. He told me he just talked with the owner and the owner decided not to sell but wanted to rent his home out instead.  He was able to see all the pictures of the inside of the house.  He said the owner told him to send him a check for the rent and he would leave him the key!!  Now that should have been a red flag right away.  He suspected it might be a fraud. This is not the first time this has happened.  A couple of years ago, about 6 months  after I sold one of my listings, the buyer called me and asked if I had ever had the property for rent before it was for sale.  I told her I did not.  She said she came home one day to find people all over the property and in her backyard.  Apparently these scammers are offering the property for rent at a lower than market rent in an attempt to get someone to send them money. So be careful - if it is too good to be true, it usually is.

Freddie & Fannie 3% Down Payment Loans Again ?

Looks like Freddie and Fannie will start giving first-time home buyers help with purchasing their first home.  Yep, beginning as early as December 13, you can start the paperwork. Normally, first-time home buyers can be anyone who has not owned a home in the past three years, but it is always a good idea to double check their requirements. They will be strict on documentation and qualification, which they should be or we will be back in the same mess we were in with homeowners buying over their heads. Here's the story from Inman News

New Housing in South San Francisco?

There has been a lot of meetings with the folks in the Sunshine Gardens tract of South San Francisco to discuss the development of 31 townhomes and 4 single-family homes on 1.7 acres of farmland.  Looks like it has passed Planning by a vote of 6-1. This area is just one block from El Camino High School and a short distance from BART.  Commuters should love this location. Sign Hill is still safe for now even thought part of it is for sale. Here is the rest of the story.

Freddie and Fannie Allowing REOs to be Purchased by Previous Owners

Effective November 25th, Freddie and Fannie are now allowing previous homeowners to buy back their property for the market value instead of the high mortgage that was against it. This should have been done originally.  While I am not a fan of people pulling equity out of their homes and not having to pay it back, I believe many people got caught up in the hype of purchasing a home when the prices were over inflated. Here's the story:

Housing Resource Fair May 10

There will be a very informative Housing Resource Fair coming to South San Francisco next month.  To name a few, there will be presentations regarding: First Time Homebuyers Information on Reverse Mortgages Shared Housing and more.  I am not a fan on Reverse Mortgages and I think that you need to be especially informed on the pros and cons of these mortgages.  But in some cases it may be the best way to go.  They are usually very expensive, so ask many, many questions and I think it is wise to have a neutral party go with you should you consider this option. Here is the informatiion:
Saturday, May 10, 2014
9:00am - 1:00pm
Municipal Services Building
33 Arroyo Drive
South San Francisco, CA 94080
Housing Resource in SSF on May 10

Sales Activity for March

Here are the South San Francisco sales for March 2014. The lowest sale was at $380,000 and the highest sale was at $935,000. What you don't see is the the original listed price on 301 Chapman was $649,900 but because of its code violations that a new buyer has to take over, the price came down considerably.

March 2014 Sales

Address Beds Baths SF List  Price Sales Price Close of Escrow
62 MAHOGANY 4 3 2150 $799,000 $935,000 3/27/2014
2249 DERRY 5 2.5 2490 $808,888 $840,000 4/1/2014
54 FRANKLIN 3 3 1728 $799,000 $825,000 4/4/2014
129 HIGHCREST 3 2.5 1950 $729,000 $754,000 3/4/2014
2555 ADAMS 4 2 1810 $649,950 $740,000 3/3/2014
623 MYRTLE 3 1.5 1100 $629,000 $730,000 3/21/2014
18 JACINTO 3 1 1700 $649,999 $728,000 3/28/2014
640 DEL MONTE 3 1 1140 $599,000 $720,000 3/19/2014
256 GARDENSIDE 3 2 1050 $649,950 $680,000 3/6/2014
3931 CROFTON 3 2 1690 $650,000 $650,000 3/19/2014
269 WESTVIEW 3 2 1050 $644,999 $645,000 3/3/2014
419 HAZELWOOD 4 2 1980 $550,000 $617,500 3/31/2014
103 ROSA FLORA 3 2.5 1200 $575,000 $585,000 3/20/2014
301 CHAPMAN 2 1 700 $399,900 $380,000 3/21/2014
Is this sales information helpful?

Know the Pitfalls of Reverse Mortgages

Your parents took out a reverse mortgage so that they could stay in their home.  Maybe they need help with medical bills.  It may sound like a good idea because there is a lot of the equity is in the house since they have owned it for so many years.  But maybe not. The cost of these reverse mortgages sometimes makes it very expensive for both the homeowner and for the heirs.  The cost of the reverse mortgage can be thousands of dollars paid up front in order to get the loan.  Then when the homeowner dies, the heirs try to take over and it appears their rights are being denied and lenders are foreclosing. Make sure you or your parents know EXACTLY what they are getting themselves into before agreeing to these mortgages. For more information, check out this article with the NY Times:  

Having Trouble Making Your Mortgage Payment & Want to Lower It Permanently? Free Event March 20 thru March 24

Many people don't know about this and I was one of them, but the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development(HUD) has a mortgage relief event happening in the Bay Area going on right now at the Oakland Marriott City Center through Monday, March 24, 2014 from 8 am to 6 pm. If you are a homeowners struggling with your mortgage payments, you can sit down with a counselor to determine an affordable mortgage payment and meet with lenders.  In some cases, interest rates can get as low as 2 percent due to these counseling events and 80 percent of people walk away with a solution per the San Francisco Examiner's article. The banks, Wells Fargo, Bank of America, Chase as well as Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac come along to help cut through the red tape. Also per the article, homeowners need only bring their last mortgage statement, bank statements for the past six months, proof of income for the past 30 days and tax information from last year. For more information, here is the website: You just might end up with a better, lower mortgage payment? If you go to the event, please check back and let me know if it is all that it appears to be. This event is also for homebuyers.  I don't know what the qualifications are, but here is  the flyer on the event:  NACA - Neighborhood Assistance Corporation of American - Mortgage Relief What do you think? Original story:

First Time Homebuyer Workshop on March 5th in South San Francisco

Wednesday evening there will be a presentation from HEART and Meriwest Mortgage for First Time Homebuyers in San Mateo County. There are restrictions, such as income, but the benefits are wonderful.  There are a couple of programs.  Depending upon the program, you need either 5 or 10% down payment. In some cases,  this program may be better than an FHA loan. I met these folks just last week and they are wonderful.  They tell me that it is a very quick process and escrow can close in less than 30 days.  Wow, that is faster than some of the regular loans out there The workshop is FREE to First Time Homebuyers who want to purchase a home anywhere in the County, but unfortunately, not in Daly City.   Every city in San Mateo County must think it is important enough to help with this program, but Daly City does not or does not have the funds or ???? But there are lots of other cities who are helping first time home buyers, so if you want to know more, be sure to come. The workshop is on Wednesday evening, March 5, 2014 from 5:30-7:30 pm at South San Francisco Municipal Building 33 Arroyo Drive South San Francisco, CA 94080 If you can't make it or want more information, contact   Paula Stinson HEART of San Mateo County 650-872-4444 x 4#  

First Time Homebuyer Workshop Today At Tanforan Shopping Center

HEART/Meriwest First Time Homebuyer Workshop on Saturday Nov 16, 2013

When Saturday November 16, 2013 from 10:30 AM to 12:00 PM PST Add to Calendar
    Where The Shops at Tanforan 1150 El Camino Real Go to main entrance, between BJ's & Barnes & Noble 3rd door on the right San Bruno, CA 94066 <image004.jpg>Driving Directions
HEART and Meriwest Mortgage together offer a downpayment loan and mortgage program to help first time homebuyers in San Mateo County buy a home with 5% down and no PMI.Find out more at our free First TIme Homebuyer workshop on Saturday, November 16 from 10:30-12:00 at the Shops at Tanforan in San Bruno. This popular program has helped over 50 families buy their first home in San Mateo County. Find out if you qualify on our website. You may buy a house or condo up to $521,250 anywhere in the County except Daly City with this special program.. We'll have representatives from Prudential CA Realty on hand to talk about what might be available in this challenging real estate market and how to make a successful offer.   Space is limited. Please click on the link below to register or RSVP now.

Get more information

Register Now!

I can't make it

We look forward to working with you. Please contact Paula Stinson at HEART or John Souza at Meriwest Mortgage, 408-849-7115 if you have any questions.Sincerely,  Paula Stinson HEART of San Mateo County 650-872-4444 x 4# <image005.jpg><image006.jpg><image007.jpg>