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  • Inflatable, portable PhotonGrill cooks your food with nothing but the sun

    The barbecue of the future is here. Meet PhotonGrill, an inflatable 100 percent solar-powered grill that lets you ditch the charcoal for greener cooking. Perfect for camping and areas with fire bans, the lightweight, fire-free and fuel-free PhotonGrill is designed for portability and easily folds down to fit in a backpack. The best part? Its NASA-inspired technology is so efficient the grill reaches 500F in just five minutes.

    Recently launched on Kickstarter, the PhotonGrill is available at a discount for early bird backers and comes with a lightweight carrying case, solar-optimized pan, BBQ tongs, and an air pump. The portable and durable grill weighs only seven pounds and can easily be set up in just three minutes. A pot can also be attached for cooking. An optional add-on module will transform the PhotonGrill into a highly efficient power generator so you can charge your electronics with sun-powered electricity wherever you go.

    Heres how the PhotonGrill works: once fully inflated, the grill, made of lightweight plastic film, takes on the form of a reflective parabolic mirror that concentrates the energy contained in the rays of light into a small area, creating highly-localized energy thats powerful enough to cook with. The design team says the technology was based on experiments carried out by NASA in the 1960s

    By using heat to thermally deform the plastics polymers structure, the plastic is able to remember and transform into the desired parabolic shape when inflated, says the PhotonGrill team, who also claim the grill has 1,000 watts of power. Set atop a stable tripod, the parabolic mirror is made with highly robust polymer foils tested to ensure they can withstand all contingencies, even a large splash of boiling grease. PhotonGrill is looking to raise $111,964 on Kickstarter to bring the solar-powered grill to production.

    Courtesy of California Association of REALTORS. Click Here for Original article.

  • Americans Think Homeownership is a Sound Investment

    Media Contact: Jane Dollinger / 202-383-1042 / Email

    WASHINGTON (October 14, 2015) A vast majority of Americans believe that buying a home is a solid financial decision, and most believe they could sell their home for at least its initial purchase price, according to a new survey from the National Association of Realtors. The 2015 National Housing Pulse Survey also found that a preponderance of Americans think that now is a good time to buy a home.

    The survey, which measures consumers' attitudes and concerns about housing issues in the nation's 50 largest metropolitan statistical areas, found that more than eight in 10 Americans believe that purchasing a home is a good financial decision, and 68 percent believe that now is a good time to buy a home. Seventy-one percent believe they could sell their house for what they paid for it, a jump of 16 percentage points from 2013.

    When asked for reasons about why homeownership matters to them, respondents answers did not change significantly from past years. Building equity, wanting a stable and safe environment, and having the freedom to choose their neighborhood remain the top three reasons to own a home.

    "Homeownership is part of the American Dream, and this survey proves that dream is alive and thriving in our communities," said NAR President Chris Polychron, executive broker with 1st Choice Realty in Hot Springs, Ark. "Realtors believe that anyone who is able and willing to assume the responsibilities of owning a home should have the opportunity to pursue that dream in a safe, responsible way, which is why NAR advocates homeownership issues and educating potential buyers about achieving their property investment goals."

    The number of renters who are now thinking about purchasing a home has increased since the last survey in 2013, up from 36 percent to 39 percent. Sixty-one percent of renters stated that owning a home is a priority for their future. According to the survey, 80 percent of respondents believe that pre-purchase counseling programs and classes are very or somewhat important. Forty-five percent of homeowners who said they did not take a counseling program, reported they would have taken part in one had it been easily available to them.

    Attitudes about the housing market have improved in recent years. Forty-nine percent of respondents indicated that they feel activity in the housing market has increased in the past year, compared to 44 percent in 2013 and 12 percent in 2011. Eighty-nine percent expect home sales in their area to either increase or remain the same. Concern about foreclosures has also declined, with only 15 percent of respondents indicating that foreclosure is a major concern.

    In addition to improved attitudes about the housing market, survey participants also showed an improved outlook regarding the economy. Only 36 percent think that job layoffs and unemployment are a big problem, a substantial drop from 45 percent in 2013.

    Perceived obstacles to homeownership have remained mostly unchanged compared to recent years; 78 percent of respondents point to college debt and student loans as the main obstacle to making a home purchase affordable. Seventy-six percent of participants said they have a full-time job but still did not make enough money to purchase a home. Seventy-four percent believe they do not have enough money for a down payment and closing costs.

    As the market has improved, concern about the cost of housing has increased. Two-thirds of survey participants said that home prices are more expensive than they were a year ago. There is additional concern over the lack of available housing; 41 percent said the lack of affordable homes is either a very big or fairly big problem in their area, an increase of 9 percent points from 2013.

    For adult millennials under the age of 35, the burden of student debt is their chief concern, with 86 percent of respondents naming college debt as an obstacle to homeownership. Over half reported that their housing costs are a financial strain on their budget, 65 percent are concerned about high rental prices, and 60 percent are concerned about high home prices. However, millennials tend to have a more upbeat and positive view about the future of the nation than older Americans, with 42 percent of millennials saying that the country is headed in the right direction compared to only 20 percent among those aged 50 and older.

    The 2015 National Housing Pulse Survey is conducted by American Strategies and Myers Research & Strategic Services for NARs Housing Opportunity Program. The telephone survey polled 1,000 adults nationwide in the 50 most populous metropolitan statistical areas. An additional 250 interviews were conducted with millennial adults (born after 1981) from the same geography. The study has a margin of error of plus or minus 3.1 percentage points.

    The National Association of Realtors, "The Voice for Real Estate," is America's largest trade association, representing more than 1.1 million members involved in all aspects of the residential and commercial real estate industries.

    Courtesy National Association of Realtors. Click Here for Original Article.

  • The Real Estate market is heating up! Now's the time to sell, as home values have increased and home equity has returned. It's a great time to take advantage of selling in a Hot Market, and making thatmove upto your Dream Home.

    You own a great home that you are proud of. You love the interior with it's open floor plan, your kids love the fabulous school they go to, and the neighborhood is safe. You have an idea on what you feel your home is worth, based on how much you love your home. A price that would return everything you have put into it, over the years.

    Caution - This is where trouble begins. A seller who prices his home based on "Emotional Value", may not be realistic with the true current "Market Value" of the home.

    What are the Dangers of The Overpriced Listing?

    An overpriced home will NOT lure buyers. In fact, it will limit the amount of buyers who will even consider your home for purchase. When a home is first listed, it generates a very high level of interest from prospective buyers. The first 2 weeks of the listing time period, is the most crucial. It is SO important to be priced correctly from the beginning.

    DO YOU WANT A FULL PRICE OFFER OR BETTER?

    Price it in line with the current market. As a good rule of thumb - The Longer you are on the market, the lower the price reduction of the offers you will receive. If you are priced correctly, you should receive good offers at or above your list price - This Should Be Your GOAL!

    Let's Test The Market and Price it High - NOT A GOOD IDEA!

    Overpricing your home in the belief that you can reduce the price back later, is a strategy that can backfire badly. For example, by the time you reduce your price, you may have missed out on a surge of buyers interested in the properties like yours. Also, if prices are lowered, buyers may wonder if there's something wrong with the property that kept other buyers away. So to avoid selling your property below market value and wasting valuable time, don't fall into the overpricing trap.

    How do you determine the currentMarket Valueof your home? How to you avoid the pit falls of becoming an over priced listing, which stays on the market for more than 30 days and becomes stale and undesirable?

    Here are a few factors to help you determine the true value of your home.

    What did Your Neighbor's Home Recently "Sell" For?

    This is a great place to start in determining the current market value of your property. Sales within a mile of your home, with like-kind features, will give you an idea of what buyers are willing to pay, at this current time. When setting a price for your home, the listing level must strike a balance between your need to achieve the best-possible return and the buyer's need to get a good value. The market value of your home is determined exactly like any other commodity - What a buyer is willing to pay for it in today's market. Despite the price you paid originally, or the value of any improvements you may have made, the value is determined by the market forces.

    Buyers look at a about a dozen properties on average before making an offer on a property. As a result, they have a good overview of the market and will compare your home against the competition. If it's not in line with similar homes on the market, buyer's will not consider it a good value for their money.

    Where is Your Home Located?

    You know the old saying"Location, Location, Location". Well it's true! Take a look at your neighborhood. Consider everything from curb appeal, to your school district, to the local crime rates. How close is the nearest grocery store, shopping mall, or entertainment? I know these factors are out of your control, but unfortunately they still play a role in how much you can ask for your home.

    Another Real Estate saying is"Buy the least expensive home, in the nicest neighborhood", which allows for an increase in your home's market value. When you have the nicest home in a neighborhood that is less in quality, the reverse happens - you may have a hard time making all of your money back in the resale. Adjusting your list price accordingly, may be necessary.

    Have You Made Updates to Your Home?

    Buyers, now a days, are looking for turn-key, move-in-ready properties. They want the most bang for their buck, with the least amount of work to be done, to meet their standards of living. If you have not updated your home, you may want to consider doing so prior to listing. You will find that even the most minor updates will add value. Items such as updating light fixtures and ceiling fans, flooring, and paint. Renovated kitchens and bathrooms hold the highest rate of return on your investments. This would include updated counter tops, cabinets, and appliances.

    Pricing According to What You Owe on Your Home - NOT a Good Idea!

    Your home can be your nest egg and every homeowner wants to make a profit when selling. After all, it should be the biggest and best investment you've ever made. But the truth in the matter is, if the market is not performing in your favor you may have to adjust in your asking price. If you solely base your list price on how much you still owe on your mortgage, you more than likely will be overpricing your home. Watch out for this temptation....

    Hire a Trustworthy Agent

    Some Real Estate agents will tell you exactly what you want to hear, when it comes to the value of your home. They will do this to secure your listing. However, the truth is that they will not be able to sell you home at the overpriced, price you had in mind. You will receive low-ball offers, if you're lucky, and will be encouraged to accept one, causing you to be discouraged and disappointed.

    Work with a Realtor who has the experience, expertise, and integrity to get your home SOLD quickly and at the highest price through proven marketing strategies. By pricing your home properly from the beginning, you will have multiple buyers, flocking to your open house, willing to make an offers and sometimes OVER the properly priced, list price!

    Nothing better than multiple offers on a properly priced Home! It can happen to YOU!

    CLICK ON THE LINK TO FIND YOU YOUR HOME'S MARKET VALUE-What IS MY HOME WORTH?

  • Many people do not realize thatif they own a home, they can take advantage of deductions that will help them during the tax season.Take a look at the different situations belowto see if you qualify for a deductionthistax season!

    Mortgage Interest Paid: Mortgage interest paid to a lender is tax-deductible. For many, this represents the biggest tax break available to homeowners.

    Points:If you paid points to get a better rate on your loan, there is a tax break for you. However, the IRS will only allow you to deduct the points in the year they were paid.

    Property Taxes:You will receive aproperty tax deduction for each year you own your home. Sometime in January you should receive a form 1098 from your mortgage company. This form details mortgage interest paid, the amount paid into escrow,and the amount disbursed from escrow to your local tax office.

    Energy Efficiency:TheIRS credits more than just mortgage interest paid at tax-time. Itallows tax breaks for certain renovations and appliance purchases, too. The government'sEnergyStar.govwebsite is an excellent sourceforhomeowners.When you buy new windows, new doors, new heating and cooling units,or anythingthatuses green energy,it may increase yourtax deductions.

    Real estate taxes paid at settlement or closing.Real estate taxes are generally divided so that you and the seller each pay taxes for the part of the property tax year you owned the home. Your share of these taxes is fully deductible if you itemize your deductions.

    Formoreinformationonallowabletaxdeductions for homeowners,visitIRS.gov

  • Buying a bank owned or REO (real estate owned) home gives you the potential of getting more house for your money. But it is a bit different than buying a normal resale.

    Before you begin searching, here are a couple of things you should know:

    Get Help:It is wise to find a real estate agent who has a background in buying and selling foreclosures. Also foreclosure laws vary from state to state and can be tricky. Along with your real estate agent you should also consult with a real estate lawyer who understands the ins and outs of buying foreclosures.

    As-Is:There is usually not much room for negoatiation. Since foreclosures are mostly sold as-is, you should not expect to get a discount to compensate for repairs.

    Get preapproved:Unless you are paying cash, the seller will want a preapproval letter from a lender before accepting an offer.

    Search Listings:Have fun and start searching! There are many sites to search for foreclosed homes.Homepath.comis a foreclosure listing website owned by Fannie Mae. On Homepath.com, you will be able to see foreclosures that qualify for Homepath and Homepath Renovation loans. There are also incentives for first time home buyers. There are only a few lenders that are approved for Homepath loans. Do a search on the Homepath website to find a loan officer near you. Dont forget to consult with your real estate agent as she may have access to other listings that you will not.

    Inspection:An inspection is very important when buying a forclosure especially if the property has been vacant. Many forclosures have problems that are not easy to find. A trained inspector will be able to detect mold build up, broken pipes, etc. If the inspections goes well, you still may have to invest extra money in repairs. The previous homeowner may have neglected regular home maintenance or intentionally damaged the home. You may also need to buy new appliances.

    Once you find your home and make an offer, be prepared for the process to take longer than a normal home sale. Many banks have several forclosures listed at any given time. You should also know that they will have several steps of approval that your offer must pass.

    If dealing with the above issues is something you are willing to do, buying a foresclosure is a great way to get your new home at a cheaper price. Dont forget to educate yourself so that you can make sure the deal you get is worth the added repairs,etc. that may be needed.

    For more information on home buying, contact Sheri Jones at 909-660-1838Sherijones2012@gmail.com #BuyingForclosures #RealEstate #HomesBySheri

  • Over 40 million individuals and families live in rental housing. In 2014 renters were spending more than 30% of their income on housing costs. It is predicted that rents increases will continue to rise in 2016.

    Although there will continue to be a rise in rental prices, renting can have its advantages. If you are renting and apartment, condo, or townhome, the landlord is responsible maintenance of the property etc. Many individuals do not want the feeling of being tied down to a mortgage and like the flexibility of being able to find another place when their lease runs out. However, if they choose to stay, renters will inevitably face rent increases at their lease renewal.

    Buying a home has its advantages as well. Purchasing your own home gives you a feeling of accomplishment. If you are a first time buyer, there are several incentives and loan programs that are geared toward your purchase. There are also tax breaks for first time buyers! If you are renting, the investment benefits the landlord. If you are paying a mortgage, the investment is yours. Loans with a fixed interest rate means that you will see little change in your mortgage for the duration of the loan.

    Dont let the fear of the unknown prevent you from considering buying a home. If you are a first time buyer, find a local real estate agent you specializes in first time homebuying. She will be able to give you the pros and cons of renting versus buying. Also, find a loan officer who will take a look at your finances and credit report. They will be able to tell you what you should and shouldnt do in order to prepare for a purchase and guide you to the best loan product to meet your needs.

    Finally, take the time to research your options. You may find that purchasing a home versus renting is the best investment in your future!

    For more information about homebuying, contact Sheri Jones at 909-660-1838Sherijones2012@gmail.com #RentingVSBuying #RealEstate #HomesBySheri

  • Looking for PrimeEquestrian Propertywhere you can board your horses on your property? Welcome to an Equestrians dream in Rancho Cucamonga ~ Alta Loma! Located at the base of the Cucamonga Peaks, you will find amazing homeswith half acre lots where you can keep your horses at home!

    Areas in Rancho Cucamonga, Alta Loma and Etiwanda are zoned to allow for horses unless a specific development has CC&R's restricting horse improvements. The basis for the number of horses per property is one horse per 10,000 sq. ft. of land which for the most part amounts to two horses per 1/2 acre. However, the horse facilities themselves must be at least 70' away from the adjacent land owner's personal dwelling or livable area of their residence (excludes garage space). The properties in Etiwanda that you are referring to such as Rancho Estates allow for horses, even encourage them however, the horse are kept off the resident's property and placed in a community facility located within the community.

    There are horse trails that run throughout Alta Loma and Etiwanda almost like the basic artery of the city's plan forequestrian properties. Please check with the city of Rancho Cucamonga, specifically the Engineering Dept. and Planning Division at (909) 477-2750 when purchasing a property within Alta Loma, Rancho Cucamonga and Etiwanda for specific zoning regulations, horse trail easements and maintenance and how it may or may not impact your home buying decision. Alta Loma area is ideal for the horse lover and border.

    Equestrian Facility is Available for Drop In Use and is also Reservable for Horse Shows.

    Parties areNOTallowed at the Equestrian Center.

    Available features include:

    Show OfficeConcession StandRestrooms2 lunging pens1 Western Arena - 295' x 150'1 Dressage Arena - 220' x 90'Permanent Trail Coursein Nature TrailArea(West of Equestrian Center)Equestrian Trail AccessHitching RailsWater Troughs

    Heritage Park Equestrian CenterRules and Regulations

    Under no circumstances are horses allowed to run loose in arenas. Round pens are the designated location for turning horses out.(R.C.M.C 12.04.010)Be courteous to other users.Never leave horses unattended.Use of this facility is at your own risk.Arena gates must be closed when in use.Tie horses to designated hitching posts, not arena fencing.Keep the rail free for users.Helmets are required when practicing jumps.Pass other horses carefully and with adequate space.No unauthorized vehicles allowed.No person is authorized to provide instruction, teach lessons or sell any items for a fee without written authorization from the Community Services Department.(R.C.M.C 12.04.020).Facilities can be reserved by permit through the City of Rancho Cucamonga, Community Services Department.Please report any damages or issues to the City of Rancho Cucamonga, Community Services Department, (909)-477-2760.

  • What would you do if you won the lottery? Pay off your mortgage? Certainly that would be a wonderful thing to happen to many! However, non-winners will continue to have to pay monthly mortages.

    But do you have to be stuck with that 30 year mortgage you signed? Not necessarily. There are a couple of things you can do to shorten the loan term for your home.

    1. Make extra monthly payments. For example, making your regular loan payment, but add and extra $100 dollars or more toward your principle. Make sure you designate that extra payment as the principle payment only, as the mortgage company will just apply it to your regular monthly payment.

    2. Use monthly/yearly bonus checks.Apply your bonus checks to extra principle payments.

    3. Make an extra house payment each quarter.

    4. Round up your payments so that your paying a few extra dollars each month.

    Making extra payments according to your budget can help knock a few years off your loan term. Use anextra payment calculatorto see your savings.

    Contact Sheri Jones today for all your real estate needs!!

    909-660-1838

    sherijones2012@gmail.com

    #PayingOffYourMortgage #RealEstate #HomesBySheri

  • Wehavediscusseddifferentwaystoincorporategreenlivingintoourhomestosavemoney

    andgaintaxbreaks.Eventually,italsohelpsourenvironment.However,youdonthaveto

    modifyorchangehomesystemsinordertolivegreen.WecanReduce,Reuse,andRecyle.

    Youcantakeadrivethroughanyneighborhoodandseerecyclingcontainersnexttothe

    regulargarbagebins.Somecommunitieshaveonelargebinthatispickedupevery

    twoweeks;othershaveseparatecontainersforpaper,glass,andplasticbottles.

    Itissurprisingtoknowthat,althoughwehavethesetoolsforrecycling,many

    ofusdonotrecycle!

    AccordingtotheEPA(EnvironmentalProtectionAgency),Americansgeneratedabout

    254milliontonsoftrash,andrecycledandcompostedabout87milliontonsofthismaterial

    in2013.Itisequivalenttoa34.3percentrecyclingrate.Onaverage,werecycledand

    composted1.51lbsofourindividualwastegenterationof4.40lbsperpersonperday.

    Wecandobetter!!

    Plastics:In2013,33milliontonsofplasticsweregeneratedbyAmericans.

    Only9percentofplasticswererecycled!Insteadofusingplasticbagsatthegrocerystore,

    bringreusablegrocerybagswithyou.Whenpurchasingitemsthatuseplasticcontainers,

    lookforproductsthataremadefromrecycledplastic.

    Glass:Glasscanberecycledoverandover.About27percentofthe11.5milliontonsofglass

    thatwasgeneratedbyAmericansin2013wasrecoveredforrecycling.Glassdisposedofinthe

    regulartrashonlyendsupinalandfillanddoesntgetrecycled!

    UsedMotorOil:Dumpingyourusedmotoroildownthedraincancontaminateonemillion

    gallonsoffreshwater.AccordingtheEPA,recyclingyourusedoilwillnotonlyhelpthewater

    supplystayclean,butreduceAmericandependenceonforeignoil.Ittakes42gallonsofcrude

    oiltoproduce2.5quartsofnewmotoroil.Itonlytakesonegallonofusedoiltoproducethesame

    amount!Manygarages/autosupplystoresthatsellmotoroilalsoacceptusedoilforrecycling.

    Tofindrecyclingcentersnearyou,visitEarth911.

    HazardousWasteMaterials:Householdproductsthatcontaincorrosive,toxic,ignitable,orreactive

    ingredientsareconsideredtobehouseholdhazardouswaste.Paints,cleaners,oils,batteries,etcrequire

    specialcarewhenyoudisposeofthem.Checkwithyourlocalwastemanagementagencytoseewhat

    rulesapplyforyourcommunity.

    Asyoucanseefromtheexamplesabove,recyclingdoesntcostyoumoney.Simplychangingacouple

    ofhabitswhendisposingofwastewillallowyoutolivegreenwithoutspendingtonsofmoney!

    Formoreinformationonrecycling,visitepa.gov

    ContactSheriJonestodayforallyourrealestateneeds!

    Sherijones2012@gmail.com909-660-1838

  • As a homeowner, you have a choice when it comes to buying insurance on your home. You have a choice of companies and coverage. Your real estate agent or escrow agent might recommend an insurance company, but it's a good idea to shop around to get the best coverage and price for homeowner's insurance.Ask your friends, family and colleagues what insurance company they have. Ask them if they are happy with the company, if they have any complaints, and if they have filed any claims. One of the most common complaints consumers have about insurance companies is how a claims process is handled.The coverage you purchase will cover your home, your personal property, other structures such as a shed or a fence, medical payments and loss of the use of your home.Here's some guidelines to help you when you are ready to purchase homeowner's insurance. But first, many people question why they need homeowner's insurance.Why Do You Need Homeowner's Insurance?If you are financing your home, your lender will require it.If you're paying cash for your home, it's still a good idea to get insurance.Here are the five common parts of homeowner's insurance coverage you need to know about:1. Dwelling or Structure- Ask yourself how much it would cost to rebuild your home in its current location if there was a total loss.Your homeowners insurance should cover the cost of building you a new home. Your insurance agent should know your neighborhood and be familiar with the replacement cost. Remember, earthquake and flood coverage are purchased separately.The amount of you pay for this portion of your homeowner's insurance is what will pay for damage to your home and to any structure that is attached to your home, like a garage, patio or balcony.The amount of this coverage should be the same as the replacement cost of your home. Remember that this coverage is not the market value of your property - it does not include the land.2. Personal Property- The portion of your homeowner's insurance policy is based on the contents of your home - your personal property. Make a list of the items you own including appliances, TVs, computers, laptops, printers, sound systems, furniture, clothing, jewelry, outdoor equipment such as lawn mowers, and sports equipment like golf clubs, golf carts, etc.It's not easy to put a value on the items, but you can estimate by finding the receipts when you bought the items or go online and find out approximately how much the items are worth.It's also a good idea to videotape the contents of your home. We never really think about what we have until something terrible happens like a robbery, fire, tornado or other natural disaster.The amount of coverage for your personal property is usually based on the amount of insurance you have on your home.The percentage of personal property coverage varies. Some insurance companies offer 50% of your dwelling coverage as the limit of your personal property insurance, while other companies offer more or less.For example, your dwelling (home) coverage is $150,000. The insurance company will allow 50% of that amount to insure your personal property or $75,000. Be sure to ask your insurance agent what the percentage of coverage is for insuring your personal property.3. Other Structures- Other structures include sheds, carports, fences, unattached garages. You should consider insuring other structures on your property. If you have other structures, ask your agent how much will be added to your insurance policy to cover the items.4. Medical Payments- You can purchase coverage that will cover medical payments for anyone that gets hurt on your property. If someone comes to your home for a visit and slips and falls or gets hurt, this portion of your policy will help pay for their medical expenses.5. Loss of Use- You can pay an additional amount for insurance coverage to cover the cost of the loss of use of your property. If your home is damaged due to a tornado, fire, flood, etc., you can pay for insurance that will help you pay for some of your living expenses if you have to stay in a hotel while your home is being repaired.Bottom line, be prepared and armed with knowledge when you're ready to buy homeowner's insurance. A trusted and knowledgeable insurance agent will help you determine the amount and type of homeowner's insurance coverage is best for you and know that you know the different types of coverage, you'll be in a position to make a good decision.

  • There is a reason why Southern California is so diverse. The regions weather, close proximity to a large variety of landscapes and well-rounded quality of life make it desirable to people of ages and interests. If you think you would enjoy living in a place that experiences very little annual rainfall and almost no humidity, a place that possesses a wealth of sandy beaches boasting world renowned surf spots, tide pools and boating marinas and more culture and entertainment than one person could experience in a lifetime, a place like Southern Californiais where you should be looking for your new home.

    In one day a resident of Southern California could visit a Farmers Market full of fresh produce, crafts and goods from local merchants, hit the beach and try some ocean kayaking or deep sea diving, hike in a magnificent canyon, dine at a four-star restaurant with outstanding cuisine, take in a show at any one of the innumerable night spots and still be in bed by midnight. Travel just three hours or less in any direction from this region and you will find yourself celebrating in Mexico, relaxing on an offshore Island, living it up in Las Vegas, skiing on snow-covered mountains or exploring the endless gorgeous desert. If you want peace without monotony, adventure without a passport and resort-style living without leaving your backyard, Rancho Cucamonga of Southern Californias Inland Empire is as ideal as it gets for your new home.

    One of three residential communities in the Rancho Cucamonga is Alta Loma. Nestled in the foothills of the magnificent San Bernardino Mountain Range, Alta Loma, along with Etiwanda and Cucamonga, enjoy sweeping views of city lights at night, rolling hills and a mountainous backdrop.

    Alta Loma, which means high hill in Spanish, extends up the base of Mt. Baldy. Known for its half-acre horse properties and stunning architecture, the community is one of the most affluent in the county. Real estate options consist of luxury homes, gated and golf communities as well as horse properties. Alta Loma also experiences an extremely low crime rate, has award-winning schools and a warm climate year-round.

    Formerly home to citrus groves and expansive vineyards, many homes still enjoy fruit trees in their yards, large shady eucalyptus trees lining the quiet streets, and retired grapevines still clinging to the exterior walls of the locally-run businesses in the quaint downtown area of Rancho Cucamonga. Almost completely residential, Alta Lomas approximately 43,000 residents enjoy an intimate, laid-back community lifestyle. Children attend award-winning schools.

    With more than 20 area parks and community facilities, equestrian amenities, numerous walking and biking trails, and local shops and dining, there is something for everyone. Additionally, just an hours drive away, there are world-class ski slopes, lakes and rivers, Downtown Los Angeles and the Pacific Ocean. The best of everything. Rancho Cucamonga!

    Rancho Cucamonga home appreciation rates ~

    In the last 10 years, Rancho Cucamonga has experienced some of the highest home appreciation rates of any community in the nation. Rancho Cucamonga Real Estateappreciated 46.42% over the last ten years, which is an average annual home appreciation rate of 3.89%, putting Rancho Cucamonga in the top 10% nationally for real estate appreciation. If you are a home buyer or real estate investor, Rancho Cucamonga definitely has a track record of being one of the best long term real estate investments in America through the last ten years.

    Appreciation rates are so strong in Rancho Cucamonga that despite a nationwide downturn in the housing market, Rancho Cucamonga real estate has continued to appreciate in value faster than most communities. Looking at just the latest twelve months, Rancho Cucamonga appreciation rates continue to be some of the highest in America, at 20.03%, which is higher than appreciation rates in 99.43% of the cities and towns in the nation. Based on the last twelve months, short-term real estate investors have found good fortune in Rancho Cucamonga. Rancho Cucamonga appreciation rates in the latest quarter were at 3.54%, which equates to an annual appreciation rate of 14.93%.

    Importantly, this makes Rancho Cucamonga one of the highest appreciating communities in the nation for the latest quarter, and may signal the citys near-future real estate investment strength.

    Relative to California, our data show that Rancho Cucamongas latest annual appreciation rate is higher than 90% of the other cities and towns in California.

    Rancho Cucamonga is prided on its gorgeous luxury homes, gated neighborhoods, golf communities and horse properties. Located at the base of the Cucamonga Mountains, this quiet community as so much to offer. Renowned designers have tailored a variety of communities dotted with amazing homes to suit even the most distinguished of tastes. As you can guess, having easy access to all of the best of what Southern California has to offer, while calling the safe, quiet, beautiful landscape of the San Bernardino foothills home. at the end of the day, comes at a price. The popular half-acre horse properties go for at least $700,000. Many million-dollar homes occupy the neighborhoods at the north end of Haven Avenue. A 2300-square-foot home starts around $500,000. Some older homes with similar square footage are available for as low as $300,000. For raising children in quality schools and safe neighborhoods, retiring in luxury or escaping to after working in the fast paced city of Los Angeles, Rancho Cucamonga is an ideal place to call home!

  • 2 Things to Know about Home Inspections

    While a home inspection report is vital before purchasing an older home, experts agree that even newer homes should be checked. Not only will the report help you learn about repairs that should be made immediately, its a handy reference guide to keep on-hand throughout the time you live in the home.

    Because there are so many aspects to a professional home inspection, many first-time homebuyers know little about the process. Weve chosen two aspects that we find most of our buyers dont know a thing about.

    Report Format

    Professional home inspectors use different formats when detailing information about the house. All reports, however, should contain several common features:

    A description, in detail, of the condition of the homes major systems.A list of items that require immediate repair.A list of general maintenance items.

    Ask inspectors that you interview to supply you with a sample report. Ensure that the above items are included and that the inspector not only lists whats wrong, but why its a problem and what should be done to remedy it.

    Choosing an Inspector

    Choose your home inspector carefully, as any mistakes made will cost you money. At the same time, keep in mind that the home inspector performs a visual survey. He will not tear up walls or floors to look for problems. A professionally trained inspector, however, knows what to look for and can spot warning signs.

    The price you pay for a professional home inspection during the home purchase process is worth every cent. Use due diligence and hire the most experienced, professional home inspector in your area and complete your home purchase with confidence.

    Where will you find this super-sleuth? Ask everyone you know, including your real estate agent.

    By the way, its a good idea to tag along with the inspector during the inspection. This way you can ask questions while on site, rather than later, after looking at a report. Most inspectors welcome a ride along with the potential homeowner.

  • Between applying for a home loan and the close of escrow comes a most crucial step: the home appraisal. Since the transaction that got you to this point is one in which a buyer and seller agreed on a price, the appraisal is more likely than not to match the purchase price.

    In fluctuating markets however, especially those heading up after being down for some time, low appraisals occur frequently. For instance, as the nation climbed out from under the explosion in distressed sales, it took some time for home appraisals to even out. It is understandable, given that appraisers were basing market value on homes that had foreclosed or sold via a short sale.

    Although there is nothing a homeowner can do about nearby houses that bring down market values in the area, there are things he or she can do to help achieve a higher appraisal.

    1. Arm the appraiser with accurate information

    The reality is that the appraiser is only there for 30 minutes at most, Brian Coester, chief executive of CoesterVMS, an appraisal management company, tells CNBC.COM. Thirty minutes to make a good first impression when the appraiser is distracted with appraisal duties is a tall order.

    Put together an information packet that the appraiser can take with her when she heads back to her office to crunch the numbers. Here are some items to include in the packet:

    The facts ~ Make a list of the facts about your home, including the street address, number of bedrooms and bathrooms and the year it was built. Yes, the appraiser has access to these details, but verification from you cant hurt.A list of recent sales ~ The appraiser has access to area home sale prices but there is always a possibility of an error or two creeping in. Ask your real estate agent to print out a list of comparable homes in the area that have recently sold for prices that help justify your price.Inside information ~ In addition, any information you may have that the appraiser can't possibly be aware of such as the fact that your next door neighbor sold his home at a drastically reduced price to be able to quickly relocate to his new job out of town should be included as well.Improvements ~ Let the appraiser know about improvements youve made to the home, the date they were made and the contact information for the contractor who performed the work. Include information about new floors, windows, countertops and a new roof. If you finished the basement, list that. Any work on or replacement of major systems should go on the list.

    2. Spiff it up

    While you dont need to stage your home for the visit from the appraiser, you do want the home to appear as if its been maintained.

    Things like overgrown landscaping, soiled carpeting, marks on walls those do affect value and are part of the propertys overall condition rating, Dean Zibas, of Zibas Appraisal in San Clemente, Calif. tells the Wall Street Journal.

    Certified residential appraiser Ralph J. Vaccari, of Marblehead, Mass. agrees. Its important to realize, though, that a dirty or unkempt home can increase its appearance of wear and tear beyond normal, and that condition can, in fact, affect value.

    So get busy cleaning up the landscaping and spiffing up the interior of the home in advance of the appraisers visit.

    3. Make repairs

    The appraiser will assign an effective age to the home which is based on the condition of the home and any updating performed.

    Say you have a cracked window, thread-bare carpet, some tiles falling off the shower surround, vinyl torn in the laundry room, and the dog ate the corner of the fireplace hearth, these items could still add up to an overall average condition rating as the home is still habitable, however your effective age will be higher resulting in comparables being utilized which will have the same effective age and resulting lower value, Doreen Zimmerman, an appraiser in Paradise, Calif. tells the Wall Street Journal.

    Make the repairs that, if not made, will age the home in the eyes of the appraiser. Some of these may be as simple as replacing torn window screens, others may be more substantial.

    While the sales prices of comparable properties are relied upon heavily to ascertain a subject propertys value, appraisers do not solely rely on them. All pertinent data, including intangible aspects, help determine the closest estimate of the value of a property. These are the aspects of the appraisal process that you can affect. Thinking of Selling your property? Click on this link for a Free Market Value Report.