Santa Cruz & Silicon Valley Real Estate News & Market Trends

You’ll find our blog to be a wealth of information, covering everything from local market statistics and home values to community happenings. That’s because we care about the community and want to help you find your place in it. Please reach out if you have any questions at all. We’d love to talk with you!

July 25, 2022

JULY 2022 DISCOVER SANTA CRUZ MARKET WATCH

 

ARE YOU EXPLORING HOW TO ENTER THE SANTA CRUZ MARKET?

 

If you’re considering the Santa Cruz market for either a primary move, vacation home, or investment property, it’s important that you consider the dynamics of the market, but rest assured, there are several ways to make securing your home a reality. While the headlines are typically outdated since the market is moving so fast, we’re here to help you navigate it all.

 

In this video, we discuss how 1) sellers are buying permanent (not temporary) points for buyers’ mortgage rates to bring down monthly payments, 2) the art of the bridge loan, 3) how our Ready to Sell program upgrades you home to sell without tapping your reserves, and 4) how CRITICAL it is to speak with us because there are so many hidden opportunities and backstories that simply aren’t included in internet listings that you’re browsing to see what the market looks like.

 

We led off with the sellers buying points for buyers, here’s a real life scenario to spell out how it works for both sides:

 

Sales price: $1,220,000

Loan Amount: $855,000

 

Before the Buydown

Rate: 5.875  (.125) – credit to borrower, this is what they consider the undiscounted rate (closest rate to PAR pricing)

Principal & Interest Payment: $5,057.65

 

After the Buydown

Rate: 4.75% 2.875 – cost to borrower (this doesn’t include any loan level price adjustments, this is all buydown)

Principal & Interest Payment: $4,460.09

 

Essentially, they paid 3pts because they gave up the .125 credit from the undiscounted rate. This translates to a reduction of .375% in rate for each 1 point paid.

 

It should be noted that this is a permanent buydown of the rate. It’s often confused with the 2:1 temporary buydown, which only pays down the rate for the first couple years of the loan.

 

Plus, we also mentioned Bridge Loans that allow you to buy before you sell your home. There's a lot of detail and variables on this one, so it'd be best for us to chat on this since we have the best in the business as our strategic partners to assist you with this amazing option.

 

We hope you enjoyed this edition of Market Watch. Have you checked out our library of resources, including our READY TO STAY & SELL programs allowing 0% financing for 12 months to fix up bathrooms, your roof, landscaping and so much more whether you’re in the market to buy or sell your home. Plus, our Mortgage & Home Value Calculators will help you crunch your numbers.

 

Don’t forget to sign up for our e-newsletter so you don’t miss out on all our news, trends and market information to keep you in the know too.

 

Thank you for letting us be your real estate resource!

 

-Erick Fernandez

 

 

Posted in Market Updates
July 25, 2022

JULY 2022 MARKET WATCH FOR LOCALS: Santa Cruz Real Estate Is Changing By The Day

 

 

At this point, just about everything that you’re reading or watching is out of date when it comes to real estate since it’s based on last month’s stats. For buyers and sellers, this can GREATLY impact you as to whether you stay in the market. We’re here to tell you that there are very creative ways to approach this. In this video, we touch on some of those strategies and why it’s critical to speak with us to see how the day’s/week’s changes will affect your specific situation.

 

In this video, we discuss how 1) sellers are buying permanent (not temporary) points for buyers’ mortgage rates to bring down monthly payments, 2) the art of the bridge loan, 3) how our Ready to Sell program upgrades you home to sell without tapping your reserves, and 4) how CRITICAL it is to speak with us because there are so many hidden opportunities and backstories that simply aren’t included in internet listings that you’re browsing to see what the market looks like.

 

We led off with the sellers buying points for buyers, here’s a real life scenario to spell out how it works for both sides:

 

Sales price: $1,220,000

Loan Amount: $855,000

 

Before the Buydown

Rate: 5.875  (.125) – credit to borrower, this is what they consider the undiscounted rate (closest rate to PAR pricing)

 

Principal & Interest Payment: $5,057.65

 

After the Buydown

Rate: 4.75% 2.875 – cost to borrower (this doesn’t include any loan level price adjustments, this is all buydown)

 

Principal & Interest Payment: $4,460.09

 

 

Essentially, they paid 3pts because they gave up the .125 credit from the undiscounted rate. This translates to a reduction of .375% in rate for each 1 point paid.

 

It should be noted that this is a permanent buydown of the rate. It’s often confused with the 2:1 temporary buydown, which only pays down the rate for the first couple years of the loan.

 

Plus, we also mentioned Bridge Loans that allow you to buy before you sell your home. There's a lot of detail and variables on this one, so it'd be best for us to chat on this since we have the best in the business as our strategic partners to assist you with this amazing option.

 

We hope you enjoyed this edition of Market Watch. Have you checked out our library of resources, including our READY TO STAY & SELL programs allowing 0% financing for 12 months to fix up bathrooms, your roof, landscaping and so much more whether you’re in the market to buy or sell your home. Plus, our Mortgage & Home Value Calculators will help you crunch your numbers.

 

Don’t forget to sign up for our e-newsletter so you don’t miss out on all our news, trends and market information to keep you in the know too.

 

Thank you for letting us be your real estate resource!

-Erick Fernandez

 

Posted in Market Updates
July 21, 2022

[industry edition] Explore Santa Cruz County: Wineries

While Santa Cruz County is very well known for its craft beer community, the Santa Cruz Mountains Wine Country has over 70 wineries and local tasting rooms to explore. For the local wine enthusiast, day trips up into the mountains with breathtaking views all the way to the ocean are an easily accessible luxury. In this episode, we give you a glimpse into our wine region including the numerous tasting rooms in our downtown areas and villages.

 

As a wine and rural estate specialist, we’ve been able to accumulate a notable resume and expertise level needed to assist any of your wine-focused clientele. We pride ourselves in having developed a Referral Partner Program that’s quite unique, enabling your clients to experience a seamless transition as they spend time with us in securing their next property, whether it’s wine-related or not.

 

Below you’ll find some of the resources to explore our wine region further that you can pass onto your wine-focused clients. They all offer similar topography, however, one location may fit certain people’s needs better.

 

North County: Bonny Doon

This area is mixed with the Redwoods and can offer beautiful ocean views and close proximity to Santa Cruz and Davenport beaches.

 

Summit Road / Old San Jose Road

A great spot that is not far from town and also a convenient commute location to Silicon Valley.

 

Corralitos Wine Trail

South County region that offers a lot of sun exposure among the gently rolling hills and a country feel

 

Tasting Rooms

Hip and artisan tasting rooms downtown are popular destinations for locals and visitors alike. Housing around these trendy options can range from typical suburban neighborhoods to unique and charming bungalows.

 

Winery Resources

Find a winery

Notable wineries worth visiting

Santa Cruz Mountains Association

 

As your go-to Santa Cruz County referral partner, we’re all about supplying you with local intel to keep your clients informed in their coastal and mountain property search. We love making the referral process seamless with your clients and we’re happy to navigate our region together, we’re experienced in properties ranging from vineyards to coastal luxury and everything in between.

 

We’ve made it easy for your clients to explore this diverse county with a variety of resources ranging from our neighborhood home search tool and mortgage calculator to our Prop 19 and Fire Protection resources that will give your clients an edge when considering their next property in our region.

 

Thank you for allowing EF Homes to be your Santa Cruz Real Estate resource.

 

-Erick Fernandez

May 25, 2022

[industry edition] EXPLORE SANTA CRUZ COUNTY: A Biking Destination

Whether your a bike path cruiser looking for ocean views and breezes or a dedicated mountain biker or road cyclist spending hours out in the wild, Santa Cruz County is a true cycling destination. As our county’s rail trail gets built, there are a series of pump tracks, commutable bike routes and a plethora of dirt and road options for all cycling enthusiasts. Below, you’ll find a breakdown of some of the areas that are quite popular, but just know that about every home in our area has almost 10 minutes of commute time to any of these biking opportunities, not to mention a vast number of bike shops for every discipline of cyclist, including e-bikes.

 

Bike Paths

West Cliff: From the iconic Dream Inn hotel at the Wharf in Santa Cruz to natural icon, Natural Bridges, is an amazing bike and walking path that takes you along the coast and several world class surfing breaks.

 

East Cliff: Grab that beach cruiser and coast down the path that connects Capitola to the middle of our popular coastal living zone of the Twin Lakes/Seabright area. You’ll pass surfing legend Jack O’Neill’s home and several surf breaks that many call in sick for when the waves are breaking.

 

Mountain Biking

Nisene Marks: Located in Aptos, experience 10,000 acres of redwood forests that connects to the amazing Soquel Demonstration Forest that brings mountain bikers from throughout the Bay Area to get some trail time on.

 

UC Santa Cruz / Wilder Ranch: With upcoming trails about to open in northern-most Davenport, mountain bikers will soon have even more incredible trails to spend hours of time in the forest.

 

Road Cycling

Whether you’re looking for coastal cruises up and down Highway 1 or looking for some mountains to climb, there are amazing options that can take you up to Half Moon Bay, up to Highway 35 or down to Monterey.

 

Bike Parks

Built for all levels, from tiny tots to crazy jumps, our pump tracks starting with Aptos’ Polo Grounds and the many pump tracks dotting the landscape are all sponsored and nurtured by local pros and the many bike industry companies that are behind giving local kids a way to spend quality time on two wheels, all within a few minutes ride from their house.

 

As your go-to Santa Cruz County referral partner, we’re all about supplying you with local intel to keep your clients informed in their coastal and mountain property search. We love making the referral process seamless with your clients and we’re happy to navigate our region together, we’re experienced in properties ranging from vineyards to coastal luxury and everything in between.

 

We’ve made it easy for your clients to explore this diverse county with a variety of resources ranging from our neighborhood home search tool and mortgage calculator to our Prop 19 and Fire Protection resources that will give your clients an edge when considering their next property in our region.

 

Thank you for allowing EF Homes to be your Santa Cruz Real Estate resource.

 

-Erick Fernandez

May 24, 2022

UP-TO-THE-MINUTE MAY 2022 MARKET UPDATE: Clickbait Alert

 

Welcome to our May 2022 Up-to-the-Minute Market Watch which I felt compelled to share with you because there’s so much going on right now, with lots of clickbait regarding the supposed, ensuing “crash” along with rising rates. None of this is localized, and in our local market, we live in a highly desirable place with unemployment rates being low and we're seeing buyers out there that are very well-qualified that have low debt to income ratios so there's affordability for these high prices. 

 

Here in Santa Cruz, there are still properties out there for that buyer, and sellers, there is a buyer who's willing to take that house the way it is because they know they can put some sweat equity into it. We want to put the message out there that we're still seeing multiple offers on our listings and that there are options for everyone involved. We have lots of resources that we’ve produced just recently and have available to keep you in the know, all at our blog and throughout our site at EFHomes.com as we’re producing regular video content on so many different issues. 

 

We want to make sure that you have hyper local intel for your situation, and you can't get better information than touching base with us. A quick call, text or email to see what's happening is so easy. We're here as a resource, and it’s never too early to give us a call and find out what's happening so I look forward to hearing from you, make it a great day!

 

Thank you for letting us be your local real estate resource,

Erick Fernandez

Posted in Market Updates
May 23, 2022

[industry edition] Explore Santa Cruz County: Capitola

 

 

Most visitors are very familiar with Capitola Village, but there are some genuinely unique and peaceful neighborhoods just a few minutes walk in all directions. Today, as part of our Industry Referral Partner Program, we’re coming to you from Depot Hill above the Village, but we have brief descriptions of nearby Capitola neighborhoods below so you and your clients can scope out their possibilities including our  Capitola search listings tool. It just so happens that our new EF Homes Headquarters are located in the Upper Village next to everyone’s favorite, Gayle’s Bakery, so we know Capitola very well.

 

NEIGHBORHOODS TO CONSIDER

Riverview: Situated in a storybook Capitola Village setting, steps away from the beach, and blends elegance and charming coastal-home themed architectural details in every house. Prime vacation rental homes.

 

Depot Hill: One of the most prestigious neighborhoods in the county known for its ocean views and beautifully designed homes.

 

Lower Village: Set in the vacation rental zone and perfect for those who want a second home or those who appreciate the convenience of all that Capitola Village offers.

 

Jewel Box: Close proximity to dining, entertainment and shopping of all kinds as well as the beaches.

 

Upper Village: Near locals’ favorite markets and bakeries like Gayles and easy commute on Hwy 1.

 

Cliffwood Heights: Close-knit suburban neighborhood set behind New Brighton Beach.

 

When it comes to ADU’s in Capitola, there are few things to know, but the easiest way to see what a particular property your clients are interested in can accommodate is by visiting our blog on all things ADU will give you everything you need to know. And you can’t forget vacation rental rules potential buyers should know about, here are the latest details.  

 

There’s a lot of local intel that we’re able to share with you to help you look good in front of your clients and we’re happy to be a referral partner and navigate our region together.

 

We’ve made it easy for your clients to explore this diverse county with a variety of resources ranging from our neighborhood home search tool and mortgage calculator to our Prop 19 and Fire Protection resources that will give your clients an edge when considering their next property in our region, whether it’s Capitola or the surrounding towns and cities.

 

Thank you for allowing EF Homes to be your Santa Cruz Real Estate resource.

-Erick Fernandez

Posted in Industry Resources
May 20, 2022

EF HOMES MAY 2022 MARKET WATCH: 1031 EXCHANGE CHANGES

 

HOW WILL 1031 CHANGES IMPACT YOUR INVESTMENT PROPERTY?

In this special Investor Edition of our monthly Market Watch for May 2022, we lay out the potentially massive impacts that may very well affect your investment property in just about 6 months. As we mention in this video, the limitless gain of the 1031 Exchange program’s transfer process is under fire and if you’ve had a property for just a few years, or maybe decades, you’ll want to get all the details that we mention below along with links to some key resources

 

The tax proposals, similar to those presented over the past two years, seek to limit the amount of gain that can be deferred to an aggregate amount of $500,000 ($1 million for married individuals filing a joint tax return) per year for each taxpayer.

 

Here is info from the IRS that details some key points of a 1031 exchange: https://www.irs.gov/businesses/small-businesses-self-employed/like-kind-exchanges-real-estate-tax-tips

 

We hope you enjoyed this special edition of Market Watch. Have you checked out our library of resources, including our READY TO STAY & SELL programs allowing 0% financing for 12 months to fix up bathrooms, your roof, landscaping and so much more whether you’re in the market to buy or sell your home. Plus, our Mortgage & Home Value Calculators will help you crunch your numbers.

 

Don’t forget to sign up for our e-newsletter so you don’t miss out on all our news, trends and market information to keep you in the know too.

 

Thank you for letting us be your real estate resource!

 

-Erick Fernandez

 

Posted in Market Updates
May 3, 2022

[industry edition] Explore Santa Cruz County: Pleasure Point

 

[industry edition] - EXPLORE SANTA CRUZ COUNTY: Pleasure Point

While the Opal Cliffs neighborhood hosts quite a few tech icons, Pleasure Point is the playground for everyone to access an amazing coastline bike path that borders an eclectic mix of beach cottages, summer homes and longtime local surf “shacks,” that are highly sought after by a who’s who of Silicon Valley. As your go-to Santa Cruz County referral partner, we’re all about supplying you with local intel to keep your clients informed in their coastal and mountain property search. In this edition, we breakdown the Pleasure Point area and its highly desirable amenities.

 

If you’re wanting to help your clients explore current listings, here’s a link to our Pleasure Point-specific search tool.

 

When it comes to ADU’s in this area, they’re quite popular, and there are few things to know, but the easiest way to see what a particular property your clients are interested in can accommodate, is by checking our ADU spotlight blog, which will give you everything you need to know. And we mentioned those vacation rental rules potential buyers should know about, this link should definitely be referenced if this is your client’s goal in searching for a property in this area. 

 

There’s a lot of local intel that we’re able to share with you to help you look good in front of your clients and we’re happy to be a referral partner and navigate our region together, here's a direct link to our official Referral Partner Program.

 

We’ve made it easy for your clients to explore this diverse county with a variety of resources ranging from our neighborhood home search tool and mortgage calculator to our Prop 19 and Fire Protection resources that will give your clients an edge when considering their next property in our region, whether it’s Pleasure Point or the surrounding towns and cities.

 

Thank you for allowing EF Homes to be your Santa Cruz Real Estate resource.

 

-Erick Fernandez

Posted in Industry Resources
April 28, 2022

EF HOMES SOUTHBAY MARKET WATCH APRIL 2022

 

WOW-FACTOR FINANCING NO ONE IS TALKING ABOUT

As you have probably noticed, the Silicon Valley’s Southbay real estate market is absolutely RED HOT and doesn’t seem to be slowing down. There are a lot of financing myths and options out there that we want to bring to light so as someone just entering the market, it’s not as intimidating. Our guest this month is mortgage consultant, Tai Boutell, who is powered by Mason-McDuffie Mortgage Corporation's Santa Cruz Lending Group. We’ve worked with Tai for many years in both the South Bay and Santa Cruz markets. He breaks down six dynamic financing programs that are well kept secrets that in some cases, just came on the market. From veterans and solopreneurs to those just graduating medical school, there’s something for almost every situation.

 

We hope you enjoy this edition of Market Watch for South Bay. And if by chance you’re curious about what Santa Cruz offers as an option in your home search, here’s an easy way to get a lay of the land via our library of resources. Be sure to check out our READY TO STAY & SELL programs allowing 0% financing for 12 months to fix up bathrooms, your roof, landscaping and so much more whether you’re in the market to buy or sell your home. Plus, our Mortgage & Home Value Calculators will help you crunch your numbers.

 

Don’t forget to sign up for our e-newsletter so you don’t miss out on all our news, trends and market information to keep you in the know too.

 

Thank you for letting us be your real estate resource!

 

-Erick Fernandez

 

Posted in Market Updates, Sellers
April 28, 2022

EF HOMES SANTA CRUZ COUNTY MARKET WATCH APRIL 2022

6 FINANCING OPTIONS DEFINITELY WORTH EXPLORING

While the real estate market here in Santa Cruz County continues to be heavily influenced by the stock portfolios of those in Silicon Valley and throughout the Bay Area, there are still options for those who are a bit intimidated by the headlines. In this edition, our guest is Tai Boutell of Santa Cruz Lending Group who breaks down six dynamic financing programs that are well kept secrets that in some cases, just came on the market. From veterans and solopreneurs to those just graduating medical school, there’s something for almost every situation.

 

We hope you enjoy this edition of Market Watch for Santa Cruz County. In the meantime, be sure to check out our library of resources, including our READY TO STAY & SELL programs allowing 0% financing for 12 months to fix up bathrooms, your roof, landscaping and so much more whether you’re in the market to buy or sell your home. Plus, our Mortgage & Home Value Calculators will help you crunch your numbers.

 

Don’t forget to sign up for our e-newsletter so you don’t miss out on all our news, trends and market information to keep you in the know too.

 

Thank you for letting us be your real estate resource!

 

-Erick Fernandez

 

Posted in Buyers, Market Updates