First time home buyer in US

Asked by Waiwah, San Diego, CA Wed Oct 10, 2012

I will move to San Diego to work next year so I consider to buy property in San Diego. I will work in Sorrento Valley and I prefer the location to be UCSD, UTC area. (I have lived in La Jolla Crossroad for a few months for my internship.) My parents from Hong Kong are also looking for properties with good investment value. They are experienced in real estate investing in HK but they haven't invested in US before and don't know much about the San Diego area. I hope to find some good and honest agents to help us to locate the right properties with good annual return. We will travel to San Diego for 10 days in the beginning of the January, 2013. I hope I can do more research now to familiarize myself with the real estate market in San Diego so that we can make decision quick during our travel. Can any agent provide help and give me some guideline for property searching in San Diego?

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Royce Kemp’s answer
Royce Kemp, Agent, San Diego, CA
Thu Nov 15, 2012
Hi Waiwah,

As an investor myself whose portfolio includes two properties in the UTC area, I strongly encourage a purchase in this part of town as a rental unit. The demand for housing is very strong in the area as it's centrally located to all of San Diego, but perfect situated where the tech and bio jobs are at. Since it's also near the university and hospitals (Scripps/UCSD), there is always a strong rental demand in the area. With the trolley eventually coming to UTC, and the mall recently being renovated, this area will only be in more demand. Contact me via email and I can set you up with a MLS search so you can see what the current market activity is like. Thanks for the question!

Royce Kemp
2 votes
Michael Alex, Agent, San Diego, CA
Wed Oct 10, 2012
Hello Icondor,

I do work with a Prestigious International Company and work with International Buyers. If you’re looking for a good, hardworking, passionate, trustworthy agent, that’s me .Working as a buyer’s agent I don't get paid until you get your keys for your properties at the end of escrow. I receive most of my business from referrals as well, so I'm only entitled to give you my 100 percent,and of course I will give you the best service ever. You stated you are looking for agents to help you out. Agents work on commission only and if you work with different agents, they will not give you their 100 percent. Agents do alot of work,and for a client to purchase with another agent, is a waste of time .I only work with clients that are committed to only one agent. San Diego falls in top ten city to invest and buy in Real Estate. So you’re making a great decision. How much do you plan on investing with? How much cash flow and yield do you expect a year after deductions and taxes, etc? Are you interested in a condo,townhome, single family detached, multi family or commercial property? I have alot more questions for you. I need narrow down your search, breakdown all the numbers and a lots more to help you find the perfect investments. Contact me and let’s set up a meeting over the phone. I assure you, you will not find a harder working, smarter or more knowledgeable agent then me.

Sincerely and always my best,

Michael Alex
Real Estate Consultant
cell. 619.581.9348
Pacific Sotheby's International Realty
San Diego,CA
1 vote
Hector Gaste…, Agent, Coronado, CA
Wed Oct 10, 2012

I work with a lot of Foreign Nationals and it would be my pleasure to help you and your family, here is my information,

Hector R. Gastelum
Realty Executives Dillon
REALTOR #01382940
efax 619-270-2516
1 vote
Rashard Scott, Agent, San Diego, CA
Thu Oct 11, 2012

To answer your question directly, I am apart of one of San Diego's best Real Estate investment teams, RBD Residential and RBD Ventures. We deal directly with cash buyers and investors throughout the world. We not only buy and sell investment properties but we also can connect you to reputable contractors as that have done a great job for us.

You may begin searching for properties in San Diego by visiting my website or you can provide me with your contact info and I can give you Free access to the MLS.

Contact me now, to help familiarize you with the San Diego market and to get you pre approved prior to your arrival.


Rashard Scott
Keller Williams Realty/RBD Residential
Web Reference:
0 votes
Jill Miranda, , San Diego County, CA
Thu Oct 11, 2012
My business partner just returned from a real estate summit in Hong Kong and we have relationships with agents in our companies offices there. Our company is international and we work with buyers from all over the world. With a background in both real estate accounting and commercial real estate I have a lot of experience working with investors. I am knowledgeable about many areas of San Diego. i can provide you information to compare various parts of the county to help your parents narrow down areas for the best investments.
What types of investment are they interested in? Multi-family, properties needing improvements, individual homes? What price range are they considering?
What type of property are you looking for and what is your price range?
You can contact me to provide information directly to you and your parents until you arrive in San Diego. I will be available in January to help you further with your search.

Jill Miranda
Pacific Sotheby's International Realty
DRE #01413799
0 votes
Jerry Heard, Agent, San Diego, CA
Thu Oct 11, 2012
I am currently working with a family from Beijing. They are buying a nice condo in Ranch Bernardo. I would suggest that you us my website to look at homes that are available. There are also links for community services.
I would be glad to answer your questions. I was born and raised in San Diego and have been in the real estate industry since 1977. Feel free to contact me at your convenience,

Local Help with Your Real Estate Needs

Jerry Heard
Your Broker
The San Diego Property Shop
Direct 619-920-9796
Office 619-269-5545
Fax 619-269-9168
CA DRE # 00648687
0 votes
Cory La Scala, Agent, San Diego, CA
Thu Oct 11, 2012
Hi There,

Prices have started to rebound some in San Diego, and your best areas will be the neighborhoods most in demand. Inventory is low right now, and expected to be throughout 2013.

I find the best way to research areas is to start receiving listings for properties within your price range, in several areas you're interested in. I like to separate those searches, so you know what area the listings are from when you see them in your inbox. In a couple of weeks, you'll be able to narrow down your areas because you'll start to see where's there's the type of properties you like best. You can start out by receiving Active listings (properties ready to take offers), to see what's available.

You can also receive listings that already have offers accepted by the owner, so you can see how long they were on the market. This will give you an indication of market value and pricing. If a property's sitting on the market and it's not a short sale, it's priced too high. We have two types of this listing, Pending (already in escrow), and Contingent (the owner accepted an offer and is waiting for bank approval, usually a short sale). Unfortunately, you don't see these broken down on most real estate sites.

Then you can also receive Sold listings, so you can see what the final sales prices are. Appraisers look at these more, especially in a skewed market like this. By January, you'll know where you want to live, and can focus in those areas when you arrive. This will also work in other areas of California that you're interested in.

Please let me know if you have any questions or need any other information.

Warm Regards,

Cory La Scala, REALTOR
Independence Realty
Lic # 01443391
0 votes
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