Realtor Dale Warfel

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Friday, April 27, 2007

Finding a good home inspector

In order to find a home inspector, Dian Hymer, author of "Buying and Selling a Home A Complete Guide," Chronicle Books, San Francisco; 1994, advises looking for someone with demonstrable qualifications. "Ideally, the general inspector you select should be either an engineer, an architect, or a contractor. When possible, hire an inspector who belongs to one of the home inspection trade organizations."
The American Society of Home Inspectors (ASHI) has developed formal inspection guidelines and a professional code of ethics for its members. Membership to ASHI is not automatic; proven field experience and technical knowledge of structures and their various systems and appliances are a prerequisite.
One can usually find an inspector by looking in the phone book or by inquiring at a
real estate office or sometimes at an area Realtor association.
Rates for the service vary greatly. Many inspectors charge about $400, but costs go up with the scope of the inspection.

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Choosing between buying and renting

Here’s a tip for home buyers from Dale Warfel – if you’re confused about what is best renting or buying.

Home ownership offers tax benefits as well as the freedom to make decisions about your home. An advantage of renting is not worrying about maintenance and other financial obligations associated with owning property.
There also are a number of economic considerations. Unlike renters, home owners who secure a fixed-rate loan can lock in their monthly housing costs and make prudent investment plans knowing these expenses will not increase substantially.
Home ownership is a highly leveraged investment that can yield substantial profit on a nominal front-end investment. However, such returns depend on home-price appreciation.
"For some people, owning a home is a great feeling," writes Mitchell A. Levy in his book, "Home Ownership: The American Myth," Myth Breakers Press, Cupertino, Calif.; 1993.
"It does, however, have a price. Besides the maintenance headache, the amount of after-tax money paid to the lender is usually greater than the amount of money otherwise paid in rent," Levy concludes.
As for evaluating the risk associated with home ownership, David T. Schumacher and Erik Page Bucy write in their book "The Buy & Hold Real Estate Strategy," John Wiley & Sons, New York; 1992, that "
good property located in growth areas should be regarded as an investment as opposed to a speculation or gamble."
The authors recommend that prospective buyers spend a few months investigating a community. Many people make the mistake of buying in the wrong area.
"Just because certain properties are high-priced doesn't necessarily mean they have some inherent advantage," the authors write. "One property may cost more than another today, but will it still be worth more down the line?"

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Willow Glen tourist spots

Once an incorporated city in its own right, Willow Glen is today a uniquely charming neighborhood in San Jose. Like a small town, with its own main street, Lincoln Avenue, Willow Glen is lush with tree-lined streets, punctuated with architecturally distinctive single family homes, many of them Victorian and Spanish-style built in the 1920s and 1930s. The Lincoln Avenue downtown business district, located between Coe and Minnesota, is lined with sidewalk cafes, Italian delis, home design stores and clothing boutiques. Although Starbucks, Peets, Noah's Bagels and others have established outposts to mine Willow Glen's lucrative demographics, most Lincoln Avenue stores continue to be locally owned and operated retail businesses. In fact, Willow Glen features two of the Silicon Valley area's only remaining independent bookstores. Gentrification transformed Willow Glen in the 1990s. And even today, it's a diverse community with a rich tapestry of quiet, enjoyable and very livable Silicon Valley attributes.

With wonderful restaurants and delis,
Willow Glen has become a staple for local San Jose residents. Enjoy a weekend breakfast at John's XLNT Foods or grab a great Italian lunch at La Villa deli. For those who prefer fine dining in Willow Glen, Vin Santo is warm and welcoming. Stop by WineStyles of Willow Glen, select a great wine for under $25, and receive free corkage at participating Willow Glen restaurants.

Real Estate Finder:
Interested in a home in Willow Glen? Located three miles southwest of downtown San Jose, Willow Glen is bordered by the Guadalupe River, the Los Gatos Creek and Coe and Curtner Avenues, the Willow Glen community is an ideal setting for new families where virtually every home is unique and beautiful, with small town curb appeal.

Willow Glen Bars and Clubs are fun any day of the week. Stop by Aqui's for a signature margarita, or enjoy yourself at Goosetown, singing karaoke with friends. Try wine tasting in Willow Glen. With entertainment and events like Dancing on the Avenue, Willow Glen is fun for the whole family.

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Thursday, April 19, 2007

Setting the price for your home

So, you have decided to sell your home and are wondering how to go about setting a price for it.

One of the best ways to set a price is to calculate based on the home’s square feet. However, this will give you just an idea about what price to set. The next step you need to take is getting a comparative market analysis from your real estate agent. This can be very helpful because a CMA will give you the necessary information on the prices of similar homes that were sold, homes on the market and home that did not sell in your area.

Use this information and ask
your real estate agent a couple of questions on the current rates in the real estate market. You need to find out if prices are increasing or reducing and how many homes in your area are being sold. This will help you to better evaluate your situation and you can set the price according to these details.

One important thing you need to do is look into the repairs that have to be carried out in and around your home. Are these repairs substantial, because in that case you would have to spend some money doing the repairs. Determine whether these costs could be recouped during the
sale of your property. If the current market trends is such that it favour buyers, then this point is important to consider because a home that’s not in good condition will not have a good value set on it, which means people will be offering you less than what you consider is the right price for your home.

If you go to an agent, don’t get convinced by agents who simply hike up your home’s price and then come back weeks later to reduce it. The price they set is not the right one so be wary on such issues. You should not have your house in the market for more than a few weeks because a property that’s on sale for a long time becomes less saleable as people start wondering why the property was not sold earlier … are there too many defects or is the seller not motivated enough? All this actually affects the price you set and you may have to lower your price if these issues affect the sale of your home and you are in a real hurry to sell and move elsewhere.

Finally the best price to set for your home, is one which is 3% of its actual market value. This give it a 95% chance of getting sold within a normal listing period, otherwise these chances tend to decline. A higher price than this indicates that you have not really looked into the market trends and that you are not offering competitive rates. As a result people looking into buying a house within your price range will reject your house in favor of larger homes for the same price.

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How do you choose a good realtor?

One of the most important requirements in selling a home or buying a new one is to find a good realtor, because someone who is more experienced and knowledgeable will most likely give you the right deal and value for money.

So, how do you go about finding someone who will
give you the best real estate advice and clinch a good deal for you? Here are some tips on this.

Ask friends and people you know (who have recently sold their home), about how their experience with their realtor was? Was the realtor a novice or an experienced person? Did they get a good deal and so on? Such references or testimonials are useful in helping you to select a good realtor because with such information you can eliminate realtors who do not have the kind of personality it takes to help you in your situation.

Now-a-days the best way to get
information on real estate is the internet. Once you find an agent through search results, look into what they have to say in their website. Is the realtor someone new to this business or does he or she have enough experience in doing real estate? Usually it is better to go in for people who are experienced because they are more aware of the finer nuances of the business than newcomers.

After you have selected a particular agent, call up the person and when you talk, have a real conversation instead of conducting an interview. This way you will get to know their personality and you can find out about how open they are to answering your queries. This is important because you need to choose a realtor who will make you feel comfortable with them, clear your doubts and will not rush you into paperwork.

During the talk find out if the agent is getting his commission based on the price of the house you are going to buy. If so, you would have to be cautious about choosing that agent because they may not have your best interests at heart.

When you speak to the realtor find out how often and when they will call you to provide information. You should get one phone number from the realtor on which you can reach him or her at any time. If this is not available then it is better to search for a realtor who can provide this for you because a good realtor will keep you informed about what’s happening, rather than you making calls to them for information.

Finally it is best to choose a realtor who specializes in the areas in which you are looking to buy or sell your property because they have the necessary expertise on the market trends and the rates of similar homes in your desired location, which means your chances of getting a good deal are enhanced.

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Almaden valley news

It's a buyers' real estate market, and sellers are hurting, right? Not most sellers in the northwest corner of Santa Clara County. From Palo Alto to Cupertino, houses are selling faster this month than they were in March 2006. In some places, the sales pace is faster than in 2005.

But in East San Jose and in Gilroy and Morgan Hill, for example, the story is different. So far this year, observing Silicon Valley real estate is like reading a tale of two markets: Homes in some areas are drawing multiple purchase offers and selling quickly, while other neighborhoods are dotted with "for sale" signs that have been in place for months.

"It's quite a dichotomy," said Mark Burns, an agent with Coldwell Banker who also heads the
Silicon Valley Association of Realtors. He's listing a two-acre property in Gilroy where interest has been "very slow," he said; on the other hand, in the past two months he has guided five buyers through multiple-offer situations in Campbell, Cambrian, Almaden Valley and Blossom Valley. "We've paid a little bit more" than list price to get some of those homes, he said. "It hasn't been outrageous."

In Los Altos and Palo Alto, it would take just 23 days to exhaust the supply of houses on the market there this week, based on the sales pace of the previous few weeks. That means the market there is moving faster than it was at the same time last year, and also faster than in March 2005, before the nationwide housing market slowdown began.

In the area comprising Cupertino, Mountain View and Sunnyvale, it would take 27 days to sell out the houses on the market this week - a bit less than the 36 days worth of supply from a year earlier, according to data compiled from the local multiple listing service database by Richard Calhoun, owner of Creekside Realty in San Jose.

Calhoun collected the data based on groupings of cities or neighborhoods that tend to be priced similarly and "for the most part are geographically contiguous with one another." His data measures how long it would take to sell all the listed houses given sales pace during the preceding 35 days. Condos and townhouses were not included in the data.

Martine Schepers and her husband, Wim Verhaert, put their four-bedroom Sunnyvale house on the market March 15, priced at $928,000, which they knew was a bit low compared with recent sales. "We hoped we would get $950,000" Schepers said.

Five days later, their agent, Dave Clark of Coldwell Banker, showed them a stack of 14 offers. A few were for more than $1 million. "We were looking at each other like `this can't be happening,'" said Schepers, who is hoping to move back to Belgium, where she and her husband were raised. "We kind of heard it was hot, that the market was pretty good," she said. "We did expect offers to come quickly, just not so many and not this much overbidding."

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Friday, April 13, 2007

Millionaire Real Estate Investor workshop from Dale warfel

Dale warfel will be hosting the Millionaire Real Estate Investor workshop in April. The workshop and seminar will review property selection criteria, minimizing risk, creating your team, property "flipping", wealth building strategies with real estate, and much more.

Date: Saturday, April 21, 2007
Time: 11:00 am - 1:00 pm
Fee: $25. This includes a free copy of the book Millionaire Real Estate Investor by Gary Keller, co-founder of Keller Williams Realty.
Lunch will be provided.
As a Silicon Valley native, having lived, worked, shown, listed, and sold homes in practically every corner of Santa Clara County, you can rest assured that Dale’s combination of area knowledge, technical background, and negotiation skills will benefit you, whether you are
buying or selling your home.His entire team will provide you the highest level of care you could hope for in your home purchase. They keep you informed every step of the way providing clear and understandable answers to your questions and by providing a detailed Market Analysis on each property, which interests you, prior to suggesting an offering price. They keep you well informed through out the listing and escrow period making the process stress-free.

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Buyers Want It All Within Walking Distance

The next hot market could be homes in walkable neighborhoods designed for the 75 percent of families that don't have any school-age children. Christopher B. Leinberger, a Brookings Institution fellow, says up to 40 percent of Americans want to live in urban places where they can walk to restaurants, shop, jobs, and entertainment. He predicts that the move to downtown may well lead the housing market out of its slump. “Downtown living is the preferred alternative,” he says.Though Leinberger believes there are not enough condos on the market to meet demand, builders in several cities have been forced to offer incentives or transform condos back into apartments due to slow sales.
One of the best things about
walkable neighborhoods is that locals are virtually income neutral. In other words, well-heeled empty-nesters and cash-strapped first-time home buyers both are able to choose the same neighborhoods, even if they can't afford the same interior designs, says architect Rick Emsiek, a partner with McLarand, Vasquez, Emsiek & Partners in Irvine, Calif.,Other urban living trends include:
More sales to single women who will choose cities as they become safer.
More pressure by cities on builder to mix residential with retail so service workers can live where they work.
Cities will cater to the childless while families will move to the suburbs.
Empty nesters and their grown children will live near each other in townhouses and condominiums.
Source: Builder Magazine

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Dale warfel – property listing

Here is some information about a property that San Jose realtor Dale Warfel just listed:

3594 Payne Avenue, #9, San Jose (Condo)
3 Bedrooms / 2 Bathrooms / 1080 Sq. Ft.
Remodeled Kitchen with Maple/Granite Slab Countertops/New Stainless Steel Appliances (Refrigerator, Dishwasher, Smooth Top Range, Built-in Microwave)/Cheery Wood Laminate Flooring/Recessed Lighting
Remodeled Baths with Maple/Granite/Toilets/New Flooring
New Paint, New Carpet Throughout
List Price: $472,000
For more info, go to or (virtual tour).

As a Silicon Valley native, having lived, worked, shown, listed, and sold homes in practically every corner of Santa Clara County, you can rest assured that Dale’s combination of area knowledge, technical background, and negotiation skills will benefit you, whether you are
buying or selling your home.His entire team will provide you the highest level of care you could hope for in your home purchase. They keep you informed every step of the way providing clear and understandable answers to your questions and by providing a detailed Market Analysis on each property, which interests you, prior to suggesting an offering price. They keep you well informed through out the listing and escrow period making the process stress-free.

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Saturday, April 07, 2007

Almaden Valley – Homes

Almaden Valley (often just called ‘Almaden’) is a neighborhood of about 37,000 in the south of San Jose, California, USA, roughly equivalent to the 95120 ZIP Code. The neighborhood is east of Cambrian Park, west of Santa Teresa, and south of Coleman Ave. It is named after the New Almaden Mines, which are themselves named after the mercury mine in Almadén, Spain.Like its Spanish namesake, California's Almaden had a number of quicksilver mines. They are closed now but despite their closure, there still remains a high mercury content in the nearby creeks and rivers. Even still, many of the names in Almaden still retain their mercury mine themes.As part of the Silicon Valley, the main industry in the neighborhood is now high technology research and development; IBM's Almaden Research Center is located here.

The neighborhood is primarily upper-middle class, with homes owned by local professionals, scientists, and Silicon Valley executives. Almaden Valley's key attraction is Almaden Quicksilver County Park, which contains remnants of a historic mercury mine. It also boasts of plenty of hiking and biking trails and a spectacular wildflower display during the springtime.One of the most attractive residential areas of Silicon Valley, the South San Jose community of Almaden is distinguished by nice hillside views and is one of the most gorgeous landscapes in America. Almaden Valley Real Estate features more contemporary style homes in prestigious neighborhoods, along with top rated schools.If you’re looking to buy or sell properties in this community, feel free to get in touch with Dale Warfel. Call him at: 408.624.6202 or Email him:

Prepare your home for selling

Selling your home requires a mindset that is quite difficult for a long time home owner. The house, at the time of selling, becomes a mere product. If you have been living in your house for a long time, it is difficult to see it being commoditized. However, the secret of selling is in understanding the product. It has to be packaged and marketed well.

One of the first things that a prospective buyer looks at is the exterior of the house. So, you should make sure that you present the best possible exterior to your prospective buyer. Repair the fence by replacing the posts and slots if necessary. Paint it. Your yard needs to be at its best – mow, trim and fertilize the lawn. Clean the greasy spots in your garage and make sure your automatic doors work. Provide unobstructed view by clearing up parked cars in your driveway. Polish door handles and door knockers. Replace worn or broken items, such as an unsightly mailbox or rusty doorbell.Be sure porch lights are working and add welcoming features such as a new door mat and flowering plants. Pay close attention to your exterior and look at it from the buyer’s perspective.

You should get convinced yourself before convincing the other person.When you take the buyer inside, your house should make him/her comfortable. Pay attention to the minor details and make every appliance work. Oil hinges to both doors and windows. Keep stairways tidy and secure handrails. Repair or replace bent or damaged screens and window glass. Cut back outdoor plants that restrict natural light. Keep windows clean and tidy with draperies firmly affixed and in proper working order. Repair or replace missing or damaged tile, hardwood, vinyl and baseboards. Steam-clean or shampoo carpets. Secure loose carpeting and replace damaged areas. Be conscious of odors caused by dampness, high-traffic areas or pets.Keep living areas clean and inviting. Arrange furniture to allow a spacious atmosphere. Clear counters, drawers and cabinets of unnecessary items. Clean soap dishes, mirrors, faucets and appliances (inside and out).

You must also ensure that all your electrical and mechanical fixtures are working well. Plumbing, lighting, cooling/heating systems should be checked.Finally, when you show your home, bear in mind that it is a sale. Act professional

Living in Willow Glen

Willow Glen is a neighborhood in San Jose, California. It is located southwest of Downtown San Jose, south of the Midtown and Rose Garden neighborhoods, east of the West Valley neighborhoods, and north of the Cambrian Park neighborhood and the city of Campbell, California. Once an incorporated city in its own right, Willow Glen is today the only part of San Jose that feels like a small town with its own main street--Lincoln Avenue--surrounded by tree-lined neighborhoods of architecturally distinctive single family homes, many of them Spanish-style homes built in the 1920s and 1930s.

Willow Glen is a district roughly 3 miles southwest of downtown San Jose. The traditional boundaries of Willow Glen are the Guadalupe River, Los Gatos Creek, and Coe and Curtner Avenues, though many adjacent areas are usually included today. "Downtown Willow Glen" is on Lincoln Avenue, generally between Coe and Minnesota Avenues. Gentrification transformed Willow Glen in the 1990s, though it remains a diverse community with Latino, Italian, Asian, Jewish and gay influences contributing to the rich tapestry of a quiet, enjoyable and very livable Silicon Valley community.Willow Glen Real Estate offers some of the most charming neighborhoods, with older homes, many of which are on larger lots, and a small town feeling, particularly near Lincoln Avenue. If you’re looking to buy or sell properties in this community, feel free to get in touch with Dale Warfel. Call him at: 408.624.6202 or Email him: