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Archive for the ‘California Real Estate’ Category

CA Updated Coverage Areas – 2018

J. Andrew English J. Andrew English
Friday, March 2nd, 2018

We are excited to announce the following new coverage areas as of May 1st, 2018.

Victor Valley, CA

Lake Arrowhead, CA

Big Bear, CA.

 

California Coverage Expanding

J. Andrew English J. Andrew English
Friday, May 5th, 2017

Our California coverage is expanding greatly. We have added multiple areas of the state in recent months and will be updating the site to reflect the coverage shortly. If you don’t see your county listed, give us a call. More than likely, we now cover it.

We have added coverage for most all of the southern part of the state. This includes San Bernadino County, LA County, Riverside County, Ventura County, Orange County, San Diego, Parts of Kern County and Santa Barbara. Towards the central/northern part of the state, we have added everything from Monterey all the way up through Santa Clara, through Napa and to Sonoma County. In addition, we had added everything east all the way through El Dorado County.

Imperial County MLS

Donald L. Plunkett, Jr. Donald L. Plunkett, Jr.
Friday, January 15th, 2010

We are now members of the Imperial County MLS.  This MLS covers California cities such as El Centro, Calexico, Brawley, Heber, Calipatria and Holtville.  For those not familiar with the Imperial Valley, it is the winter training home of the Blue Angels and a key agricultural area bordering Mexico and Arizona.

Blue Angels

Blue Angels

Fun Facts

J. Andrew English J. Andrew English
Thursday, January 14th, 2010

California Real Estate salespersons and brokers are disappearing in a hurry. The DRE released the end of November 09 #’s earlier this week.  Currently, California has 27,000 less licensees than they did just 12 months ago. If we take this back 24 months, California has  nearly 45,000 less licensees than they did in Nov of 07.

I applaud California for making the information so readily available.  States like Nevada and Arizona make obtaining these kinds of real numbers next  to impossible. 

Right now California has just over 500,000 Real Estate Licensees. To obtain a license in California, after you pay application fees, exam fees, etc… all to the state, you are looking at about $500 per licensee. Now add a couple of hundred bucks every renewal cycle and multiply this # by 500,000 licensees….. 

I bring this up only because I was asked earlier today why each state requires an individual to have a sep license in that state to conduct Real Estate business. Simple answer, the states profit.

Finding the bottom of the condo market

Donald L. Plunkett, Jr. Donald L. Plunkett, Jr.
Thursday, September 17th, 2009

Several sources have pointed to the Corus Bank failure as a critical step in determining what the true market value of high rise condos are.

Corus funded a number of speculative high rise condo projects in markets where we do a lot of business.  A few examples in Las Vegas:

  • One Las Vegas
  • Meridian
  • Platinum
  • Loft 5
  • Juhl
  • Newport Lofts
  • Panorama Towers
  • Village Green
  • The Residence Las Vegas
  • Soho Lofts
  • Copper Canyon
  • Boulders at Lone Mountain
  • Verano
  • Spanish Palms

Corus also funded a number of condo conversion or development projects in Arizona and Southern California, such as 44 Monroe (Phoenix), Safari Drive (Scottsdale), Wilshire Boulevard Condominiums and Solair (Los Angeles).  Now that the FDIC has stepped in, many of these largely unsold projects have been put up for sale with a 30 day deadline for a private placement transaction.   Corus previously tried to sell some of the completed REO or loans to investment groups, but the bid-ask spread was too high (because they would have been insolvent to let them go at the market price).  Now that they have failed, the true price will be discovered.

Even though the price discovery will be painful for someone who bought at or near the peak, it is important.  It is not healthy to have 50 units on the market at a huge range of prices and only 1 or 2 pending sales.  Lenders don’t even want to touch financing the few units that are purchased.  However, once a bottom price has been identified and a strong, patient owner is in place to gradually sell off the remaining developer units, the prices in these buildings will stabilize, financing will become available and transactions will again start taking place.

California statewide MLS is bombing

Donald L. Plunkett, Jr. Donald L. Plunkett, Jr.
Wednesday, September 2nd, 2009

We just received noticed that after less than 2 weeks, the Fresno Association of REALTORS is pulling out of the CalREDD statewide MLS experiment.  This leaves just Madera and Merced County, with Lake County planning to join later this month.  By my calculation, the “statewide” MLS is covering a population area of about 400,000 in a state of over 35 million people.  While many states have talked about consolidating local association MLS’s, very few have had much success.  There are differences between how the information is laid out in different MLS’s, and REALTORS often have a difficult time adapting to a generic form.  Certain MLS areas may have key entries ranging from basements, lake frontage & views, township/range/section, to ground water potability which are considered minor or rarely or never used in other MLS’s.

On top of that, many REALTORS are not comfortable with outsiders coming into their community and competing for business.  Kern County (Bakersfield) has a very expensive-to-join MLS system that helps keep Los Angeles REALTORS out of their market.  In order to do business in a number of California markets, we had to join, learn, and continue to participate and stay current on issues for a number of MLS systems ranging from:

  • Combines LA / Westside MLS (CLAW)
  • San Francisco MLS
  • San Diego MLS (Sandicor)
  • Fresno MLS
  • Orange County MLS (SoCal)
  • Desert Cities MLS
  • Sacramento MLS (Metrolist)
  • and over a dozen others…..

While we think the idea of a California statewide MLS is very excited, frankly, I think it is years away.

California sales spike

J. Andrew English J. Andrew English
Friday, December 19th, 2008

Overall Sales throughout the entire state of California will post a sales increase of 12% in 2008 as compared to 2007. This sales spike is certainly the result of falling prices throughout the past 18 months. The dramatic increase tells us that prices are reaching levels that are leading buyers back into the market. Distressed sales represented about 19% of all sales in 2008. These are sales where the seller can no longer make payments, is in the process of foreclosure, or owes more on the property than that actual value.

The credit market had a lasting impact on 2008 as well. Over 20% of all escrows opened eventually failed. The # 1 reason reported for the failures concerned changes in the credit market. The unstable credit market led to a slight drop in first time buyers, as this figure slipped about 3%. The best news is that 2nd mortgages dropped substantially. Less than 10% of all homes purchases utilized second mortgages. (down from 30% in 2007 and a whopping 40% in 2006) FHA loan related sales soared from 2% in 2007 to nearly 19% in 2008.

Redding, California added to our coverage area

J. Andrew English J. Andrew English
Tuesday, November 18th, 2008

The Shasta County MLS in Northern California has been added to our coverage area. By the end of today, Redding homeowners will be able to request and download MLS paperwork from our list now page specific to Shasta County. Tehama County California will also be available through our list now page shortly. We are very pleased to offer Redding Flat Fee MLS Listings through Congress Realty. If you have any questions on Redding or other areas we might be adding in the future, please contact us at 800 657 6579 or via email at info@congressrealty.com

Offers in Southern California Skyrocketing

J. Andrew English J. Andrew English
Tuesday, October 28th, 2008

The # of offers in Southern California are absolutely skyrocketing. I have spoken with a handful of buyer agents in San Diego up to Northern Orange County about this trend. The most common complaint I am hearing is that buyers want to offer lower than asking price, regardless if a property is priced well. The end result is the buyer doesn’t get the property. I read a great blog about a buyer who was interested in a property in Oceanside. The buyer was made aware the seller had multiple offers, however, the buyer still wrote an offer tens of thousands below list price. The agent of course was extremely frustrated, as she was unable to explain to the buyer that the property was going to sell for thousands above list price.

Watch the 4th quarter #’s for 2008 when they are released in So California. I think you will see an enormous spike in activity as compared to the 4th quarter of 2007.

Fresno homebuilder

Donald L. Plunkett, Jr. Donald L. Plunkett, Jr.
Friday, June 20th, 2008

The Fresno Bee recently reported that Beazer Homes pulled out of the central San Joaquin Valley.  Beazer cited the decline in sales activity along with the overall decline in prices year-over-year.  As a homeowner reading this story, it is easy to think it is a negative assessment of the market.  I think just the opposite.  When the market was going crazy in Phoenix and Las Vegas three to four years ago, new builders were entering the market left and right.  They would often cite 6000 new jobs per month or some other figure, yet they were building enough houses for all of those people to own several houses each.  When national builders pull out of a market, it is good news for local builders as well as homeowners looking to re-sell their homes (less supply with demand remaining constant).

One of the problems with homebuilding companies is that they do nothing but build homes.  Developers in many other real estate segments not only build apartments, shopping centers, industrial buildings, etc. but also manage and operate these properties.  So for instance, if Trammell Crow Residential’s Northern California office sees absolutely no demand for new apartments, it can focus its operations on managing existing properties instead of developing new ones.  Same applies for AMB Property Company or ProLogis in the industrial space.