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NEW LISTING:
I have a brand new listing located in a great Cambrian neighborhood, close to 85 freeway access, and shopping. Fantastic curb appeal! Great for entertaining! 3 bedroom/3 baths with upgraded cabinetry, plus 2 bonus rooms! One might be an "In-Laws" unit or utility room, the other an office! Lots of storage. Remodeled Kitchen with custom solid wood maple cabinetry, granite counter tops, garden window and newer appliances. New Carpet throughout with 20 year warranty. Built in Cabinets in Kitchen eating area and office are staying with the home. 2 car garage with automatic door opener, cabinets in garage and three attic ladders for storage.
*Come to my open house November 12 and 13 from 12:30-4:00pm. Also take a look at the property website: www.4624KirkRoad.com *
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Sell Duplex in Campbell
Selling a multi-unit property involves a sophisticated real estate process, one best navigated with the help of a Certified Multi-Family Specialist (MFS), especially one with longstanding familiarity of the Campbell, CA real estate market.
A MFS possesses a specific skill set, has intimate knowledge of the 2-4 unit market trends and will engage a custom marketing strategy designed to target buyers interested in duplexes, triplexes, and fourplexes. As your best Realtor, my goal is to obtain top dollar for your property in the shortest time possible while ensuring constant, clear communication, and a smooth transaction from start to finish.
If you have a duplex, triplex, or fourplex for sale, I would be happy to assist you with marketing your property and getting the best price. Whether you are looking to retire from real estate investing or you are upgrading to a more valuable investment property, I can help you meet your real estate goals.
I look forward to supporting you in selling
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Pricing Your Home To Sell
Pricing your home is a complex task that requires the expertise of an experienced real estate professional. Consider the following:
1. If the listing price is set outside of the proper parameters, potential buyers may be deterred from considering your home
2. Arriving at the optimal price requires evaluation and understanding of current marketing conditions, the marketable features of your home and recent trends in the real estate market
3. The closer your home is priced to fair market value when it first comes on the market, the more likely it will sell quickly at the highest price
4. The higher your home is priced above market value, the fewer number of available buyers

Statistics have shown:
1. There is a 95% chance of sale if a home is priced at market value
2. There is a 50% chance of sale if priced at 5% over market value
3. There is a 30% chance of sale if priced at 10% over market value
4. There is a 20% chance of sale if priced at 15% over market value
It is a skill where experience and judgment are fundamental. Some of the factors that influence the list price of your home are:
1. Physical Qualities
2. Market Conditions
3. Competition

The price you paid for your home or the proceeds you want from the sale have no effect on the value of your home.
The seller can only set the asking price. The buyers will set the sale price.
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Your Rights As A Real Estate Consumer
In addition to the right to view your credit report and know your FICO score, you also are protected by RESPA, the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act passed by Congress. RESPA requires your lender to provide you with a "Good Faith Estimate of Settlement Costs" early in the loan process. Be aware, however, that the amounts contained are only estimates. Keep your Good Faith Estimate so you can compare it with the final settlement costs, and ask the lender questions about any changes.
Through a Servicing Disclosure Statement, which will be given to you by your lender, RESPA also requires your lender to tell you if it expects someone else to be servicing your loan. Your lender will have three days from the time you apply for the loan to let you know about this.
RESPA regulations also require all parties involved in your transaction to disclose affiliated business arrangements. If anyone involved in your transaction (your lender, agent or title officer, for example), refers you to another service provider (including lenders, title officers, inspectors, etc.), the "Servicing Disclosure Statement" indicates that you generally are not required to use these providers, and are free to shop for other affiliates.
HUD-1 Settlement Statement
The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development also provides protection via the HUD-1 Settlement Statement. One business day before closing, you have the right to inspect this statement, which itemizes the services provided to you and the accompanying fees charged. Be sure to call the settlement agent if you wish to inspect this form. The form generally must be delivered or mailed to you at or before the settlement.
Escrow Account Operation and Disclosures
Your lender may require you to establish an escrow or impound account to insure that your taxes and insurance premiums are paid on time. You probably will have to pay an initial amount at the settlement to start the account and an additional amount with each month’s regular payment. Your payments may include a "cushion" or extra amount to ensure that the lender has enough money to make the payments when due. RESPA limits the amount of the cushion to a maximum of 2 months of escrow payments.
At closing or within the next 45 days, the person servicing your loan must give you an initial escrow account statement. That form will show all of the payments which will be expected to be deposited into the escrow account, and all of the disbursements that are expected to be made from the escrow account during the year ahead. Your lender or servicer will review the escrow account annually and send you a disclosure each year, which shows the prior year’s activity and any adjustments necessary in the escrow payments that you will make in the forthcoming year.
For more information on RESPA
Visit the web page at www.realtor.org or call (800) 217-6970 for a local counseling referral.
There are several Federal laws, which provide you with protection during the processing of your loan. The Equal Credit Opportunity Act (ECOA), the Fair Housing Act and the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) prohibit discrimination.
ECOA prohibits lenders from discriminating against you on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, marital status, age, if any or all of your income comes from any public assistance program or if you have exercised any right under any Federal consumer credit protection law.
The Fair Housing Act also prohibits discrimination in real estate transactions on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status or national origin. Frequently, there are differences in the amounts of settlement costs charged to you – they may be based on your credit worthiness or they may be unlawfully discriminatory. It is important that you examine your settlement documents closely, especially lines 808-811 on the HUD-1 settlement statement. If you feel you have been discriminated against by a lender or anyone else in the home buying process, you may file a private legal action or complain to a state, local or Federal administrative agency.
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How Much Should I Offer?
Generally, I will help you with this. However, there are several things to consider as you develop your purchase offer:
• Is the asking price in line with prices of similar homes in the area? I will conduct research, called a "Competitive Market Analysis" or CMA, on comparable properties, to help you come up with an educated opinion on the worth of the property.
• Is the home in good condition – or will you have to spend a substantial amount of time and money making it the way you want it?
• How long has the home been on the market? If it’s been for sale for a while, the seller may be more eager to accept a lower offer.
• How much mortgage will be required? Make sure you really can afford an offer that you plan to make.
• How much do you really want the home? The closer you are to the asking price, the more likely your offer will be accepted.

Common points of negotiation
The buyer and seller may negotiate many of the associated costs of the transaction. Some common items are: price, financing, closing costs, repairs that need to be made, appliances and fixtures, landscaping, painting and occupancy time frame.

Counteroffers
Offers are occasionally rejected outright, but it is common for a seller to counter an offer with terms acceptable to them. But don’t let this stop you. Now you begin negotiating. I will help you.

There are many options to explore:
• Maybe you offer more money, but ask the seller to cover some or all of your closing costs or to make repairs that wouldn’t normally be expected.
• Or, you provide the seller with more time to move in exchange for a price break, if you know extra time is what they need.
• Just remember – don’t get so caught up in negotiations that you lose sight of what you want and what you can afford!

At what point are negotiations binding?
You will have a binding contract if the seller, upon receiving your written offer, signs an acceptance just as it stands, unconditionally. The offer becomes a firm contract as soon as the signed, unchanged offer is delivered to you or me, your agent. If the offer is rejected, that’s that and the seller cannot change their mind and hold you to it.
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What's Included In My Mortgage Payments?
Your monthly mortgage payment is made up of several components. This housing expense is commonly referred to as "PITI" or principal, interest, taxes and insurance. PMI (see below) and homeowner’s association dues may also make up a portion of your total payment.
Principal
The original balance of money loaned, excluding interest. Also, the remaining balance of a loan, excluding interest. Interest is calculated based on the principal.
Interest
The charge, in dollars, for the use (loan) of the money.
Taxes
The county assessor determines the property tax based on the value of your home. There are two tax installments due each year. The first installment is due November 1st and is delinquent after December 10th. The second installment is due February 1st and is delinquent after April 10th.
Taxes may be impounded, depending on the amount of your down payment. (A down payment of less than 20% usually requires an impound account).
An impound account, set up by the lender, is a trust account to which a portion of the monthly payment is credited so that funds will be available for the payment of taxes and insurance when they’re due. This way, the lender actually pays your tax bill for you. (Supplemental taxes usually are still the responsibility of the homeowner.)
Hazard Insurance
An insurance policy pays for the loss of a home from certain hazards, including fire. You obtain homeowner’s insurance from your own insurance agent. The standard policy pays replacement costs, minus depreciation based on actual cash value. Talk to your insurance agent about the different types of insurance available. Hazard insurance expense may also be impounded in the trust account with taxes.
Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI)
Depending on the amount of your down payment, you may be required to have PMI. A down payment of less than 20% usually requires PMI. Because loans with small down payments involve substantially more risk for the lender, they need protection in case the loan goes into foreclosure. Mortgage insurance helps cover the lender’s loss in the event of a foreclosure. Because of this insurance, lenders are able to offer loans with lower down payments.
PMI premiums are collected monthly as a part of your mortgage payment. The cost of PMI varies with the amount of your down payment. Can you pay off your loan ahead of schedule? Yes. By sending in extra money each month or making an extra payment at the end of the year, you can accelerate the process of paying off the loan. When you send extra money, be sure to indicate that the excess payment is to be applied to the principal. Most lenders allow loan prepayment, though you may have to pay a prepayment penalty to do so. Ask your lender for details.
Lastly, be sure to ask your lender to remove the PMI Insurance from the loan when you have reached 20% equity in the home. You should not have to pay this insurance for the life of the loan.
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Renting vs. Owning
There’s nothing quite like a home that you can truly call your own. A place where you can have the gleaming hardwood floors you’ve always dreamed of, a space to cultivate your own vine-lined patio, a way to provide a good neighborhood for your kids to grow up in, and a freedom from the whims of your landlord. These are the images that immediately come to mind, for many of us.
Yet some of the biggest advantages of owning a home are less romantic and more practical – in fact, there are financial advantages to owning a home:
• Tax Deductibility You can deduct the cost of your mortgage loan interest from your state and federal income taxes. Since interest generally will account for most of your payment during the first half of your mortgage, the savings can be significant. Some of your costs at the time of closing (including prepaid mortgage interest) can be taken as deductions on that year’s income tax return, and points paid up front at the time of closing represent additional mortgage interest and may be taken as a deduction.

• Tax Deductibility of Property Taxes You can deduct all of the property taxes you pay.

• Appreciation Potential Real estate is considered a good long-term investment because it usually appreciates in value. The effects of borrowing potential can increase as the value of the home appreciates.

• Capital Gains Exclusion When it’s time to sell your home the amount of capital gains you have to pay is reduced. A homeowner can exclude up to $500,000 per couple if married and filing jointly, or $250,000 if single or filing separately for homes that have been the taxpayer’s principal residence for the previous two years.

• Capital Gain Treatment Congress allows preferential tax treatment on gains from capital assets held for more than one year. This would be important for a homeowner who has gains in excess of the allowable exclusion.

• Principal Accumulation Mortgages are designed to pay the interest for the time that the money has been used, as well as to retire the principal debt over a period of time. This payment plan means that part of the payment each month is for principal accumulation.

• Personal Enjoyment Pride of ownership is a valid reason for wanting to own a home. You can personalize your home while enjoying the financial benefits.
For the best evaluation of your financial situation, consult your financial advisor. He/she will be the most qualified to discuss the financial consequences of a home purchase decision, as well as help you to establish a plan that will achieve your home ownership goals.
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The Basics Of Making An Offer
A written proposal is the foundation of a real estate transaction. Therefore, you need to enter into a written contract, which starts with your purchase offer. This proposal not only specifies price, but all the term and conditions of the purchase. There are a variety of standard forms used by agents and bound by both the law and local practice. After the offer is written and signed, it will be presented to the seller by your agent in the presence of the seller’s agent, or by the seller’s agent alone.
What the offer contains
The purchase offer you submit, if accepted as it is written, will become a binding sales contract (known as a purchase agreement). It is important that it contain all the items that will serve as a "blueprint for the final sale." The purchase offer includes such items as:
• Address and legal description of the property
• Sale price
• Terms: for example, all cash or subject to the buyer obtaining a mortgage for a given amount
• Seller’s promise to provide clear title (ownership)
• Target date for closing
• Amount of earnest money deposit accompanying the offer, and whether it will come in the form of a check or cash. Also included may be the disposition of the deposit should the buyer back out of the deal at a later date.
• Method by which real estate taxes, rents, fuel, water bills and utilities are to be adjusted (prorated) between buyer and seller
• Provisions about who will pay for title insurance, survey, termite inspections and other details
• Type of deed to be given
• Other requirements such as disclosure of specific environmental hazards, seismic hazards or other locally-specific clauses
• A provision that the buyer may make a final walk-through inspection of the property just before closing
• Any contingencies
The Purchase Agreement
Your agent will use a standard form of Purchase Agreement, developed by the Association of Realtors ® , a local Association of Realtors ® , or a private publishing company, depending on the custom in the area. You can make changes – but the seller must agree to each of the changes you make.
In the United States, oral contracts are not enforceable – real estate contracts must be in writing. Even if you give me, your agent, permission to bargain on your behalf, I must have a Purchase Agreement signed by all buyers before I can present your offer.
When you read the Purchase Agreement, try to imagine yourself as an independent party who has no knowledge of the transaction other than what’s included in the contract. Is the meaning of each clause clear? For example, to avoid miscommunication list all personal property you expect to be included in the transaction. Also, it’s a good idea to stipulate the exact date and time of possession – if you’re not specific, you and your moving van could arrive and find that the seller still inside the home!
Specify in the contract that the seller is obligated to repair any damage (along with the conditions causing such damage) noted in the pest control report and the reports of other inspections.
Elements in the Purchase Agreement
Sales Price
Self-explanatory, but still the most important term.
Earnest money
Along with your Purchase Agreement, you will submit earnest money to demonstrate your seriousness about the home. “Earnest Money” is generally between 3% and 5% of the purchase price. If your offer is accepted, the earnest money becomes part of your down payment or closing costs. If the offer is rejected, your money is returned to you. If you back out of a deal against the terms of the contract, you may have to forfeit the entire amount.
Title
"Title" refers to the legal ownership. The seller should provide title, free and clear of claims by others not acceptable to you, the buyer. Title insurance will assure that the home is free of "unacceptable liens" or "encumbrances." It’s negotiable who will pay for the title insurance policy.

Mortgage Clause
A clause which specifies that the obtaining of a mortgage loan on the property on terms and conditions acceptable to you is a condition of the sale, and provides for the refund of your deposit if you fail to get the mortgage loan.
Pest Inspection
This clause provides for a pest control inspection and report by a licensed pest control operator. Sometimes sellers will provide this report prior to the purchase agreement. If not, it provides for a method of allocating whether seller, buyer or both will pay for the repairs disclosed by the report. Your lender may require a certificate from a qualified inspector stating that the property is free from termites, pests and dry rot.
Home Inspection
I strongly recommend an inspection and written report by a home inspector who is a licensed general contractor to determine the condition of plumbing, heating, cooling and electrical systems, the structure of the home, the grading, roof, siding, windows and doors. Most buyers prefer to pay for inspections (generally between $400 - $600) so that it’s clear that the inspector is working for them, not the seller. I also strongly recommend that you request any such additional inspections as may be recommended by your home inspector, such as a separate roof inspection, foundation or soils inspection, pool inspection, etc. These additional inspections may reveal conditions or defects beyond the ability of a general home inspector to ascertain.
Other Disclosure and Inspection Terms
See the section on "What you need to know" for a detailed discussion of these disclosure and inspection items.
Contingencies
You can specify, in your Purchase Agreement, that certain conditions must be met before the sale goes through. Contingencies are crucial, so be sure to speak up and tell me what’s important to you, so that all of your concerns are reflected in the offer. They may include:
• Your ability to obtain specific financing from a lending institution. This contingency will ensure that if you can’t find the loan, you will not be bound by the contract.
• That the home inspector you hire provides a satisfactory report within 10 days (for example) after the seller accepts your offer. With the proper contingency, if the report does not satisfy you, the contract becomes void.
• The home you have made an offer on will have an appraised value at or above purchase price. Sellers usually don't have a problem with this since most lenders will require an appraisal in order to lend on the property.
• The sale of your existing home.
Obviously, in a slower home sale market, sellers are more willing to accept contingencies than they are during more active circumstances. Too many contingencies in a strong real estate market may prevent your offer from being accepted. Make sure your contingencies are clear.
Earnest Money
This is a deposit that you give when making an offer on a house. A seller is understandably suspicious of a written offer that is not accompanied by a cash deposit to show "good faith." The real estate agent usually holds the deposit, the amount of which varies from community to community. This amount will become part of the down payment.
Escrow Company
In most instances, the buyer will select the escrow company which is also the title company providing the title insurance policy after close of escrow. In some counties where the custom is for the seller to pay for the title insurance policy, the seller will select the escrow and title company.
Closing Costs
You can negotiate which closing costs you will pay and which will be paid by the seller. However, be aware that longstanding custom regarding the handling of the allocation of these costs makes many of them hard to negotiate on terms different from local custom. If a seller was obligated to pay a certain closing cost when he or she bought the property, they will expect you, the buyer, to pay the same cost on your purchase. See the section on "Who Pays What?" which details these cost allocations in the area we serve.
Withdrawing an offer
In most cases the buyer may withdraw an offer right up until the moment the offer is accepted. Consult us as to the best and safest way to withdraw your offer.
The seller’s response to the offer
You will have a binding contract if the seller, upon receiving the written offer, signs an acceptance just as it stands, unconditionally. The offer becomes a firm contract as soon as the signed offer is delivered to you or me, your agent. If the offer is rejected, then the offer is no longer valid. If the seller likes everything except the sale price, or the proposed closing date, or the terms of your offer, you may receive a written counteroffer, with the changes the seller prefers. You are then free to accept or reject the counteroffer, or even to make your own counteroffer.
Each time either party makes any change in the terms, the other side is free to accept or reject it, or counter again. The document becomes a binding contract only when one party finally signs an unconditional acceptance of the other side’s proposal and that final, unchanged document is delivered to the other party or their agent.
How the seller may counteroffer
The buyer and seller can negotiate and agree about any of the terms, conditions, costs and who pays for them. Some terms and conditions that are negotiable include:
• Termite inspection fee and costs to repair any damage
• Closing costs
• Points to the buyer’s lender
• Buyer’s broker
• Repairs required by the lender
• Repairs of conditions or defects disclosed by the seller, uncovered by inspectors, or required by governmental agencies
• Date for the close of escrow
• Date and time for possession by buyer
• A holding over, or rent back, by seller after close of escrow
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