HotelDel DownTown Sunset

Greetings from Jennifer Ross -  Realtor
 
Two Fun Things To Do This Week!
September 19th -24th is the annual "San Diego Restaurant Week".  I look forward to dining with friends and trying new places.  My pick for last year was "The Amaya" at the Grand Del Mar.  Normally about $200 per couple, but only $80 during Restaurant week!
"Now in its fifth year as San Diego County's largest and most successful dining event, Restaurant Week was launched with the intention of spotlighting the city as a premier dining destination.  During this twice annual celebration, 200,000 locals and visitors get a chance to enjoy special three-course, prix fixe menus from more than 180 participating restaurants across the County."
 
The AA street fair is this weekend in Normal Heights - great music and fun people watching: www.AdamsAvenueBusiness.com
 
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News and Views - It's Not All Doom and Gloom  
 
Home prices are rising in virtually every corner of California. We've climbed for nine consecutive months, and in July posted a 10.4% gain year-over-year. That puts California's median price at $315,000 -- nearly twice the national median of $183,000.
 
San Francisco posted the biggest gain of any U.S. metro over the past year, rising 14.3%. The median price there is now more than $607,000. Meanwhile, San Diego has climbed 11.2% (median price: $389,000) and Los Angeles jumped 9.2% (median price: $345,000).
 
So where is the Golden State's strength coming from?  "I think it comes from the fact that prices went down so far and so quick," said Lesley Appleton-Young, California Association of Realtors' chief economist. "That left a lot of people here saying, 'Wow, affordable California housing.'"
 
Most of the subprime-related distressed properties have been flushed from the system. And when a foreclosure does hit the market, it's snapped up. The median days it took to sell a home in July was just 44 -- lightening fast.
"It's the dearth of supply for distressed properties that has put pressure on home prices," said Appleton-Young. "More than half the homes on the market last year drew multiple offers."
 
Plus, the California economy is picking up. Even in a recession, it has remained one of the world's 10 largest economies, mainly because it is driven by every major industry -- aerospace, tech, software, finance, agriculture, tourism. So as more of those industries recover and employment picks up, demand for housing will jump.  "California is a much larger, stronger and more diversified economy than the other [bubble] states," according to Stuart Gabriel, director of the Ziman Center for Real Estate at UCLA.
 
Another factor that has helped lift prices is a trend toward more short sales. Fewer of the distressed properties are going all the way through the foreclosure process. "The shift to short sales in itself would increase home prices," said Mark Goldman, who teaches real estate at San Diego State University.  That's because short sellers usually occupy and take care of the homes until they're sold, leaving the properties in better condition and worth more than similar foreclosed homes.
 
Goldman added that California markets are, generally, more constrained than any of the other bubble states. Florida and Nevada, for example, still have room to develop and grow in most areas. But the lack of developable land is especially acute in California, pushing home prices up.
 
Finally, the California state government has not sat idle. "California provided markets with more significant price support," he said, "That played a role in elevating prices."  The state support came in the form of tax credits of up to $10,000 for first-time homebuyers and buyers of new homes. Some purchasers were able to combine the state credit with one from the federal government to reduce their costs by $18,000.
Is Your Home Sitting On Top Of A Potential Firebomb? 
 
Earlier this month, the city of San Bruno, California was rocked when an underground natural gas pipeline ruptured, exploded, and killed at least four people, injured at least 50 more, and flattened dozens of homes.
 
How could this have happened?  Apparently, the pipeline itself was over 50-years old, although PG&E claims the pipes were inspected and declared as safe just this year. PG&E has subsequently established a $100 million fund to help residents recover, allocating $15,000 to $50,000 per resident to help them rebuild. Of course, that's a mere drop in the bucket for San Bruno residents whose homes had a mean price of $684,005 and even mobile homes are valued at an jaw-dropping $450,000, according to City-data.com.
 
Although the San Bruno explosion was the most photogenic, CBS News reports that "since 1990 natural gas leaks have been linked to 291 fatalities and almost a billion dollars in property damage, according to the Department of Transportation."
 
A second CBS News report states, "Over the past two decades, federal officials tallied 2,840 significant gas pipeline accidents nationwide - including 992 in which someone was killed or required hospitalization, according to the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration."  Natural gas problems are not, therefore, new news.
 
Could this happen to you?  The short answer is this: possibly. More than 60 million homes (about half in the U.S.) are fed by natural gas pipelines. That means there's a good chance you're living on top of the same sort of situation that caused San Bruno to erupt into "hell on Earth," as San Bruno resident Bob Pellegrini described it.  According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, the United States has a tremendous natural gas pipeline network:
  • More than 210 natural gas pipeline systems.
  • 305,000 miles of interstate and intrastate transmission pipelines.
  • More than 1,400 compressor stations that maintain pressure on the natural gas pipeline network and assure continuous forward movement of supplies.
  • More than 11,000 delivery points, 5,000 receipt points, and 1,400 interconnection points that provide for the transfer of natural gas throughout the United States.
  • 24 hubs or market centers that provide additional interconnections.
  • 400 underground natural gas storage facilities.
  • 49 locations where natural gas can be imported/exported via pipelines.
  • 8 LNG (liquefied natural gas) import facilities and 100 LNG peaking facilities.
Is your home sitting on top of a potential "hell on Earth" firebomb?  Hyperbole-filled, attention-getting headlines aside, the answer is you might be. Most public utilities claim they inspect pipes throughout the United States and no utility wants this sort of news. But like much of America's infrastructure, many pipelines are old, need to be replaced, and have the potential for catastrophic failure.
 
Courtesy of ZDNet
Video of the Week
 
What would you do if you saw a tree covered with cash?  Two people decided to find out by hanging cash all over a tree, then sitting back and watching - and they were amazed with the results!
Famous Quotes
 
Every thought is a seed. If you plant crab apples, don't count on harvesting Golden Delicious.
Bill Meyer, baseball manager, coach
 
As always, feel free to give me a call 800-913-7677 with your real estate needs.  I appreciate your referrals.
 
Signature

Jennifer Ross 

Jennifer Ross

 
Experience Counts!
Over 21 years in
Real Estate sales
Serving all of San Diego
 
Office: 800.913.7677
Direct: 619.985.7340
JennRossRealtor@gmail.com
 
 

Current Mortage Rates

 (BankRate.com weekly avg)
 30 yr fixed: 4.54%
15 yr fixed: 4.00%
 

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