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Catherine Bedrossian's Blog

By Catherine Bedrossian | Agent in Los Angeles, CA
  • Will 2011 be the Peak?

    Posted Under: Market Conditions in Los Angeles, Home Buying in Los Angeles, Foreclosure in Los Angeles  |  February 1, 2011 10:05 PM  |  756 views  |  No comments

    "2011 is going to be the peak," says Rick Sharga, a senior vice president at Realty Trac Inc.  One in 45 US households received a foreclosure filing last year, a record high and a 1.67 percent increase from 2009.

    2011 will offer tremendous Bank Owned Property opportunities and those who plan ahead can capitalize on this opportunity.

    Create a solid business plan and you will be in a position to move when the conditions are right for you.

    · Clearly define your investment goals.

    · Set aside your investment funds in a liquid account, so you can access it when the right property presents itself.

    · Find a Realtor who can help you decide on 2-3 areas that are strong rental markets and ask them to create a continuous watch/analyze/alert program for you.

    · Once you are alerted that there is a property match to your investment objectives, be prepared to move quickly.

    Catherine Bedrossian
    Home Sales Pro
    (310) 383-4212
    catherineb@socalhomefinds.com
    www.socalhomefinds.com

  • 2011 inflationary effects

    Posted Under: Market Conditions in Los Angeles, Home Buying in Los Angeles, Financing in Los Angeles  |  January 10, 2011 11:50 AM  |  525 views  |  No comments

    I have been reading a lot about 2011 being the year we see rising inflation. While on one hand rising inflation is a sign that the economy is starting to recover, on the other hand who can afford higher prices when we have all seen our incomes and assets decline in value over the last 4 years.

    One of the best ways to combat inflation is to create fixed expenses where possible.

    Generally most people’s largest expense is their housing, so if you turn that into a fixed expense, then you are protected from your largest expense going up with inflation.

    While I don’t know much about commodities and precious metals, I do know about real estate, so here are my top 3 action items to help protect you against rising inflation.

    · If you are a renter, your housing expense is a variable cost and will generally increase every year - the increase is more when inflation is higher. As soon as you can, buy a home and get a 30 year fixed mortgage. This will turn your housing expense into a fixed cost. As an example if you are paying $1,500 in rent today, you will pay double that amount in 10-15 years, depending on the rate of inflation over that time. Remember when one bedroom apartments were renting for $550.00 in LA?

    · If you have a Home Equity line or First Mortgage that has a variable interest rate, then look into refinancing into a fixed rate loan. I know interest rates are real low right now and you are enjoying low payments on your equity lines, but once they start to go up, you will not be able to refinance at a low rate. It is wiser to pay a little more now, vs. a lot more later…

    · If you have money to invest, invest in income producing real estate. Look at purchasing a single family or multi family home. With today’s depressed prices and interest rates where they are, you can invest with a small positive cash flow on your money – I say small, but it will be more than what you get when you put your money in the bank. However, the real return on investment comes in the future. You will have 3 sources of return:

    o    Equity that is built as you make your monthly mortgage payments

    o    Equity Built when home prices go up as a result of inflation

    o    Increased monthly cash flow when rents go up as a result of inflation

       

    Please contact me if you need help buying, selling or refinancing. I am here to help you navigate your Real Estate transaction with the least amount of stress and best possible outcome.

    Best Regards,

    Catherine Bedrossian

    Home Sales Pro

    (310) 383-4212

    catherineb@socalhomefinds.com

    www.socalhomefinds.com

     

  • Who Should invest in Real Estate in 2011?

    Posted Under: General Area in Los Angeles, Market Conditions in Los Angeles, Home Buying in Los Angeles  |  January 4, 2011 12:53 PM  |  488 views  |  1 comment

    We all know the Real Estate Market has declined anywhere from 20-50% in California. There are a lot of so called “experts” issuing warnings that there may be further decline in values on the horizon, since there are still 14 million homeowners in the country that owe more on their homes than the home is currently worth. While this may be true, NO ONE really knows where the bottom of the market is. If you analyze Homebuilder and REIT stocks for 2010, you will see significant upturn, which is being interpreted by some analysts as a very good sign for the Real Estate industry.

    I work with a number of savvy investors who understand that you don’t invest in the General Market – but you do invest in the Right Deal. This strategy is more sound now than ever, since in today's market, there are more desperate sellers and more deals than ever.

    That is why I believe 2011 will be a great year to invest in Real Estate. Now, not every Foreclosure or Short Sale is a good deal. Make sure you properly analyze each scenario, before you make an offer to purchase. Work with a Realtor who understands not only comparative market analysis, but also financial analysis, as this is where you will make money if you choose The Right Property at The Right Price.

    Please contact me if you are interested in finding The Right Property at The Right Price.

    Best Regards,

    Catherine Bedrossian

    Home Sales Pro

    (310) 383-4212

    catherineb@socalhomefinds.com

    www.socalhomefinds.com

     

  • Make 2011 a year of The 4 Agreements

    Posted Under: Quality of Life in Los Angeles, Agent2Agent in Los Angeles, Foreclosure in Los Angeles  |  December 17, 2010 10:39 AM  |  552 views  |  1 comment

    My dog looked at me this morning and said (if she could have uttered the words), this 7 years sure went by fast! She is right, 2010 is almost over.

    This whole year, I have been trying to practice the 4 agreements, both in my personal, as well as professional life and hope to master it in the coming year– If you do not know what the 4 agreements are, I highly recommend the book, The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz, which can be purchased or borrowed from your local library - here is a link to find it on the internet -   http://www.amazon.com/Agreements-Practical-Personal-Freedom-Toltec/dp/B000K1P66W/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1292609023&sr=8-2  Although not as easy to adhere to as I want, every time I follow these agreements, I feel and do much better, no matter the issue at hand. I strive to make these agreements a permanent part of my life and hope you find them useful.

    Agreement 1 - Be impeccable with your word - Speak with integrity. Say only what you mean. Avoid using the word to speak against yourself or to gossip about others. Use the power of your word in the direction of truth and love.

    Agreement 2 - Don’t take anything personally - Nothing others do is because of you. What others say and do is a projection of their own reality, their own dream. When you are immune to the opinions and actions of others, you won’t be the victim of needless suffering.

    Agreement 3 - Don’t make assumptions - Find the courage to ask questions and to express what you really want. Communicate with others as clearly as you can to avoid misunderstandings, sadness and drama. With just this one agreement, you can completely transform your life.

    Agreement 4 - Always do your best - Your best is going to change from moment to moment; it will be different when you are healthy as opposed to sick. Under any circumstance, simply do your best, and you will avoid self-judgment, self-abuse and regret.

    Wishing you a happy holiday season and a Brilliant New Year ahead.

    Please contact me if you need help buying, selling or dealing with an imminent foreclosure. I am here to help you navigate your Real Estate transaction with the best possible outcome.

    Best Regards,

    Catherine Bedrossian

    Home Sales Pro

    (310) 383-4212

    catherineb@socalhomefinds.com

    www.socalhomefinds.com

  • Rent-to-Own 411

    Posted Under: Home Buying in Los Angeles, Home Selling in Los Angeles, Rent vs Buy in Los Angeles  |  December 13, 2010 2:58 PM  |  715 views  |  No comments

    As the housing market continues on a downward trend, Rent-to-Own contracts are becoming more popular and the subject is being discussed more and more in our professional circles.

    While some Real Estate practitioners are reluctant to recommend a Rent-to-Own arrangement to their clients, Rent-to-Own is an additional marketing vehicle for sellers and it allows buyers time to see if they like the property and time to improve their FICO scores and repair their finances in order to qualify for a home loan. Like any opportunity in life, there are some pitfalls that need to be carefully maneuvered if you are considering a Rent-to-Own option.

    The down side from a seller’s view point: The seller does not get their money until the sale closes. Also, there is a possibility that the buyer will tie up the property for the term of the lease/rental and be unable or unwilling to finalize the purchase in the end. 

    Negatives from a buyer’s viewpoint: Less flexibility than a rental situation without the immediate benefits of owning a home and the potential loss of their down payment if the deal does not finalize.

    Please feel free to call me at (310) 383-4212 or e-mail me at catherineb@socalhomefinds.com if you have any questions or would like to discuss a Rent-to-Own option as a home seller or potential home buyer.

  • Landlord Best Practices of Increasing Rents

    Posted Under: Rental Basics in Los Angeles, Property Q&A in Los Angeles, Rentals in Los Angeles  |  December 6, 2010 10:42 AM  |  955 views  |  1 comment

    Every rental property owner knows the importance of staying competitive with other rental communities in their area.  As a Landlord you must get to know your market intimately. Study the economic factors, such as employment and new construction influencing your area. Always keep track of the available rental inventory, what your competition is charging and the amenities offered to tenants.  

    There is no magic percentage for raising rents, just what the market and your tenants will bear. It is best to raise rents slightly with more frequency, rather than large increases at once. Devise a formula that helps you keep rents high enough to pay for building upkeep, increased costs such as taxes and utilities, and build a reasonable amount for annual improvements that provide tangible, noticeable benefits for your tenants. Rent increases without making any improvements to the property or a tenant’s unit will most likely garner a negative reaction. Relatively small improvements to each unit such as paint or new carpets are always a welcome gesture. General building improvements not only make for happy tenants, they also increase the resale value of your property, i.e. if you add storage units in the parking lot and give each tenant a space, they will feel that they are getting something valuable for the additional rent they will be paying come January 1st.

    Remember an additional $5,000/yr in gross rents can translate to your property value going up $50,000 when using a 10X gross multiplier to price the property.

    Please visit www.socalhomefinds.com or contact me @  (310) 383-4212 catherineb@socalhomefinds.com if you are looking to find the Right Investment Property for the Right Price in LA County.
  • 10 Defining Moments in Life

    Posted Under: How To... in Los Angeles  |  November 24, 2010 10:11 PM  |  908 views  |  No comments

    I was recently challenged to pinpoint the 10 defining moments of my life by a colleague who had heard Dr. Phil at a convention in Las Vegas. It was a challenging but fulfilling exercise for me, so I decided to pay it forward and challenge each of you to the exercise as the holiday season starts and you begin to reflect on the year past. Here is a summary of my 10 defining moments to date:

    Age 5 - First major change when my older sister who I was very close to got married and left home.

    Age 9 - First taste of victory when I was selected as the #1 student in academic achievement.

    Age 12 - First experience with betrayal, when my best friend told a lie to save herself.

    Age 16 – Moving to the US and learning to appreciate diversity.

    Age 19 - Attending College and learning critical thinking.

    Age 24 - Finding the love of my life and starting a new family.

    Age 28 – Making a financial commitment, buying our first home and getting our first mortgage.

    Age 31 - Starting a business and learning to be self reliant.

    Age 35 - Losing my sister to breast cancer and learning to cope with enormous loss.

    Age 46 – Learning that less can be more in coping with the economic downturn.

    What experiences have defined you in your life?

 
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