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Home Buying in San Jose : Real Estate Advice

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  • Home Buying884
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Activity 942
Sun Sep 9, 2012
David Setti answered:
Hi Cat_phil,

As Terri mentioned in your last post, the $10,000 that your realtor is aking you to have ready woud like be for the earnest moeny deposit (typically 1% - 3% of the purchase price). That said, being that you are doing a VA loan, no down payment is required. However there will be closing costs and prepaid items (money needed to create reserves for your impound account for property tax and hazard insurance). That said, the $10k you put into escrow would go towards these costs. Any extra money would come back to you at time of close. Of course, if these costs were higher than $10k you would need to bring in additional money.

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Mon Sep 10, 2012
Terri Vellios answered:
You should talk with you lender on what they are going to require.

Usually VA is zero down and the 3% up front cost may be built into the loan. You need your VA Certificate of Eligability. If the home has issue which need repair you should have funds for that as in today's market the seller is most often passing that over to the Buyer. Also, plan on about $1000 for inspections. It could be less, but a good number. ... more
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Tue Apr 21, 2015
Grace Hanamoto answered:
Hi Vidhya:

Thanks for the post.


You will not only be required to obtain architectural approval from the Board of Directors for this change (pretty tricky business, really), but you'll also need approval from the city to run new lines, new drains, an exhaust and either a gas line or a 220 outlet to the area through the walls and floors of the condominium.

In most cases, buildings without washers and dryers are built this way because of the difficulty of putting in the necessary plumbing to accommodate these units. So even if the homeowners association should say yes to your request, it's highly unlikely that the City will "green light" the project knowing that you will have so much additional plumbing to add to the building and, essentially, through the units belonging to other homeowners.

There are facilities for the washer and dryer in the community. If you really would prefer your own washer and dryer, you may wish to look for a condominium or townhomes with these faciliites built into the home.

Good luck!

Grace Morioka
Area Pro Realty
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Thu Sep 6, 2012
Scott Godzyk answered:
I can tell you in general that any town or city with good schools will be more desired than one with bad or "not so good" schools. Take my area of Manchester NH, every week we get requests from potential home owners who want to be in specific school districts and others who state they are not sure which one the want to be in but know they do not want to be in a certain other district. It sure does help having an agent who is well expereinced with an area to be able to answer those questions from a buyer and guide them through the home searching process. ... more
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Thu Aug 30, 2012
John Souerbry answered:
There are several issues. The first has to be the safety of renters who will occupy the property. If the improvements are not permitted, they may not meet code and could be constructed in a way that could expose your tenants to potential injury (things that fall apart) or illness (leaks or improper use of toxic materials).
Another issue is value of the property. Appraisers will not include unpermitted improvements in the value of the property. They may even note in the appraisal report that conditions exist that should be looked at by a licensed inspector or engineer - a serious red flag that often leads to denial of a mortgage application.
There is also the risk that the city (or county) could direct that the unpermitted improvements be removed. This doesn't happen a lot, but it does happen if somehow the local building inspector finds out about the improvement and has safety concerns. Not common, but it does happen.
Finally - check your landlord/hazard insurance. Some policies cover repair or replacement of damaged structures that are permitted only.
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Mon Aug 27, 2012
Terri Vellios answered:
The homes are priced for their location and amenities. Prices starting in the upper $600's get you a new single family home with over 2000 sq. ft. If these homes were in a better school district the prices would be higher.

The rule of location location location still stands true. If you have children and school district is important to you then perhaps you may reconsider the size, age, and type of home to get into the school district your prefer. Or if you can afford private schools, then you get the home you want any where.

I suggest you make a list of your priorities and needs in a home and then seek out a home which budget fits your criteria.

Have An Amazing Day!
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Fri Aug 23, 2013
Sam Astar answered:
Mon May 6, 2013
Tina Lam answered:
Sure, you'll get about a 5% better home with all cash. At that price point, you'll be competing aggressively with all cash investors like several of my clients. Most likely, you'll be able to afford an older single family or a 2 bedroom condo.

You'll likely see prices go down during the winter, but you won't be getting a better house with the slim pickings.
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Thu Aug 23, 2012
Thuan Nguyen answered:
Yes, for the 4th straight week it has gone up. Currently at 3.66%.\

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Tue Aug 21, 2012
John Juarez answered:
It is legal for your agent to represent you and the seller under California law. However, you and the seller must consent to this Dual Agency.

I suggest that you speak to this agent’s broker about your discomfort with the situation. One possible avenue is for the broker to assign another agent to work with you on the purchase of this home.

Another avenue, of course, is for you to approve the Dual Agency and accept the price demanded by the seller, if you find it attractive, in order to prevent someone else from buying the house that you want.

I am unclear as to the status of the counter offer that you signed. Could you actually be in contract to buy the house?

Once again, talk to the agent’s broker for guidance.
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Thu Aug 16, 2012
Mike Bolaski answered:
Good question! Any reliable Title Company can provide a report normally called a "Property Detail" that provides this information.Normally, this is available only to Licensed professionals. If you still need this please conact a Local Real Estate agent in your area. Please feel free to contact me if you are unsuccesful and I will be happy to assist you! Mike 951.490.3518 ... more
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Sun Sep 23, 2012
charles butterfield answered:
Thank you for your question, Zico:

I Consider the Blossom Valley to be a very safe community.

With respect to social activity, I need to know which social activies you are looking for.

With respect to the commute, I do consider the commute out of the Blossom Valley to San Jose, Santa Clara, Cupertino and the other employment centers to be a rather time consuming one through heavy traffic.

For more information you may call me at my cell phone: (408)509-6218

Thank you,
Charles Butterfield MBA
Real Estate Broker/REALTOR
American Realty
Cell Phone: (408)509-6218
Fax: (408)269-3597
Email Address:
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Thu Aug 16, 2012
Elena Talis answered:
The property tax will be around $300 a month. Call an insurance agent for a quote for the insurance...
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Mon Dec 3, 2012
Scott Godzyk answered:
Lakisha it can be if you have the time and pateince to wait. the 3rd factor is having a buyer agent whio is well experienced in short sales to guide you. The keys are seeing how many mortgages they need to negotiate, if there is 2 or more, the sale is a 100 times tougher. Then make sure the house is priced at or near market value, homes priced too low are mostly rejected. Lastly make sure they are not in foreclosure as this could end your short sale quickly,. ... more
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Fri Aug 10, 2012
Ivan Diaz answered:

Have you been pre-qualified? I can look at options on how to minimize your payment and maximize your purchasing power. I work directly with Realtor/ Broker Crystal Nguyen from Key Legacy. She specializes in the area. Together we can help you find that 3 bdr home!

Let me know what you think! My contact info is below! Thanks

Ivan Diaz
Home Mortgage Consultant
(415) 271-7740 direct/cell
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Wed Nov 9, 2016
John Juarez answered:
I wonder why you would take complete strangers as tenants in your new home? You don’t know these tenants. You do not know whether they pay the rent on time. You do not have a credit report on the tenants.

If you are not experienced as a landlord who has dealt with problem tenants and evictions this seems like a bad way to learn IMO.
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Wed Aug 8, 2012
Grace Hanamoto answered:
Hi Ganesh and thanks for your question.

To ensure that you have all of the information regarding costs for your home, please contact your Realtor and ask him/her to provide you with the estimated closing costs for your home. Your Realtor will be the most familiar with your transaction and sales contract and can provide you with the most accurate information.

As to your other questions, the City and County transfer taxes are based on a percentage of the sale cost, so, yes, this amount does not change regardless of who handles the transaction.

The cost of the title insurance and the escrow charges, however, CAN change based on the title company that will be doing the work. Typically, if a title company has the contract to handle the escrows for a new community, there is a small break in prices for escrow and title insurance, however, if YOU, as the buyer, are paying the escrow and title company charges, you have the option of choosing another title company, if you'd like. The person who pays the fees has the right to choose the service provider.

So again, talk with your Realtor about this transaction to get the most accurate information about closing costs and options that you can exercise as the buyer. Good luck!!

Grace Morioka
Area Pro Realty-People's Choice
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Wed Aug 8, 2012
charles butterfield answered:
Thank you, Ganesh:

There is nothing bad about that location.

I do recommend that you talk with your REALTOR before you make a decision. Your REALTOR can provide you with a great deal of information that will save you money and help you avoid the pitfalls.

I recommend that you do not make a decision before you have spent some time talking with your REALTOR first.
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Fri Aug 21, 2015
Terri Vellios answered:
I can send you listings. Let me know what purchase price they are open to. Are they ok with all parks, including age restricted parks?

Drop me an email and we'll go from there.
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