real estate market after covid

How an SRES Real Estate Broker Can Help With Aging In Place

Whether it is you or a loved one, transitions can be difficult, especially if those transitions are part of the aging process. Having knowledgeable people on your team can make the that transition easier. For seniors who want to age in place, working with a real estate agent who specializes in the concerns of senior clients can be a plus. A senior real estate specialist or SRES is an important team player when determining how you will spend your golden years. They receive training about the resources available to senior clients and have a well-developed sensitivity to those clients' concerns. 

seniors real estate specialist in santa cruz caWhether it is you or a loved one, transitions can be difficult, especially if those transitions are part of the aging process. Having knowledgeable people on your team can make the that transition easier. For seniors who want to age in place, working with a real estate agent who specializes in the concerns of senior clients can be a plus. A senior real estate specialist or SRES is an important team player when determining how you will spend your golden years. They receive training about the resources available to senior clients and have a well-developed sensitivity to those clients' concerns. 

Aging in Place

Aging in place...

Unlawful Detainer (UD) Shielding : Landlord / Tenant

In part urgency legislation that took effect immediately on August 31, 2020.  Two laws: One extends UD Shielding for UD actions based on COVID rental debt and the other further expands UD shielding in general.

Until February 1, 2021 for any UD action based on COVID rental debt (owing from March 4, 2020 to January 31, 2021) public access generally to UD filing is foreclosed even when the plaintiff prevails in an action within 60 days of filing.

Beginning January 1, 2021, public access to UD fillings is permitted when a judgment against all defendants has been entered within 60 days.

In 2017, a law came into effect which restricted the general public access to unlawful detainer filings to the circumstance where the landlord prevailed within 60 days of filing.  The effect of shielding public access to UD filings was to impair the usefulness of credit reports in spotting a tenant with a history of being evicted through the unlawful detainer process.

This new law expands this public access limitation even further by eliminating public access even in those limited circumstances when the unlawful detainer action was filed between March 4, 2020, and January 31, 2021, and is based on the nonpayment of rent. It does, however, contain a special exception for the news media to pull unlawful detainer data for the purpose of gathering "newsworthy facts" by a reporter or other persons in the press.

Additionally, existing law allows access to case records filed in an unlawful detainer action to any person 60 days after the complaint has been filed if the plaintiff prevails in the action within 60 days of the filing of the complaint.

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Rent Cap and Just Cause Eviction : Landlord/Tenant

Urgency legislation that took effect immediately on August 31, 2020.  Clarifies permissible rent increases under statewide rent cap law.  Clarifies the exemptions for a duplex.

Eliminates ambiguities under the Tenant Protection Act of 2019 as to exactly how to calculate the consumer price index for the applicable area -- giving the owner greater assurance that a given rent increase is legally permissible.  Clarifies that the exemption for a duplex applies to a single structure containing two separate dwelling units.

Under the Tenant Protection Act of 2019 (commonly referred to as the statewide rent cap and just cause eviction law or "AB 1482"), a landlord is permitted to raise rent by 5% plus inflation as indicated by the applicable Consumer Price Index.  But AB 1482 is ambiguous in describing precisely which Consumer Price Index ("CPI") measurement can be used.  These ambiguities are as follows:

1)  As passed AB 1482 did not specify which CPI measure is applicable such as the CPI-U for all Urban Consumers or some other measure such as the CPI-E or CPI-W.

2)  AB 1482 required that the CPI numbers for specified metropolitan areas rely on the CPI from April.

However, the US Bureau of Labor Statistics ("USBLS") does not include April numbers for San Diego, Riverside and San Bernardino counties.

3)  AB 1482 prescribed the use of the CPI for the "region" where the property is located as published by the USBLS.

However, the only "regional" number it publishes is for the "West Region" which covers the 13 westernmost states.

4)  AB 1482 is ambigous as to whether the CPI for a given metropolitan area covers every property within the county described.

5)  AB 1482 was silent on rounding up or down the CPI

6)  Any rent increase...

Fashionable Mask to Express Your Personality Amidst COVID

covid maskIn Monterey, your mask can be fashionable and express your personality. Take a deep breath before you begin. Basic knowledge of your sewing machine is necessary for this project. For all seams always remember to backstitch at the start and finish of each seam. You will have options for securing the mask to your face with elastic or shoelaces. You will need thread, material, scissors, two 7 inch pieces of elastic or four 15 inch shoelace pieces, an iron and sewing machine. A six-inch piece of pipe cleaner is optional. If you use round elastic, you will need to tie a knot on each end to keep it in place once sewn in. The material can be anything breathable.

Decide on the fabric you want to use. Some can be quite fashionable while some others can actually be quite helpful in filtering out aerosols of the covid -19 particles. Use one layer of tightly woven cotton with 2 layers of polyester spandex material. A sheer fabric like you see on evening gowns can also be used. This combination is likely to provide performance close to the hard to find N-95 mask. You can also use silk or flannel on the inner lining as well. A good quality cotton fabric, the type used for quilting, with a polyester liner is also is great. 

covid mask...

Foreclosure and Forbearance Protections: Small Landlords and Homeowners

Urgency legislation that took effect immediately on August 31, 2020.  Requires servicers to comply with applicable federal guidance regarding COVID-19 forbearance.  Servicer must comply with special notice and information requirements if a forbearance is denied.

A mortgage servicer shall comply with applicable federal guidance regarding borrower options following a COVID-19 related forbearance as provided by the Federal National Mortgage Association (Fannie Mae), the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation (Freddie Mac), the Federal Housing Administration of the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development, the United States Department of Veterans Affairs, or the Riral Development division of the United States Department of Agriculture.

With respect to a nonfederally backed loan, a mortgage servicer is required to review a customer for a solution that is consistent with the guidance to servicers as provided by the above entities. However, It is the intent of the Legislature that a mortgage servicer offer a borrower a post forbearance loss mitigation option that is consistent with the mortgage servicer's contractual or other authority.

A borrower who is harmed by a material violation of this law may bring an action to obtain injunctive relief, damages, restitution, and any other remedy to redress the violation and reasonable attorney’s fees and costs to the prevailing party.

If the mortgage servicer denies a forbearance request, they are required to explain why if the request was made before April 1, 2021. The servicer must specifically identify any curable defect in the written notice; Provide 21 days from the mailing date of the written notice for the borrower to cure any identified defect; Accept receipt of the borrower's revised request for forbearance before the aforementioned 21-day period lapses and; Respond to the borrower's revised request withing five business days of receipt of the revised request.

This law...

Housing: Residential Entitlements Extended

Requires cities and counties to evaluate the impact of government actions on the cost of housing and associated impacts to minority communities and extends by 18 months, the time frame for the expiration, effectuation, or utilization of a housing entitlement for any housing entitlement that was issued prior to, and was in effect on, March 4, 2020, and will expire prior to December 31, 2021.

The California Building Industry Association writes in support, "This important measure has two critical components. First, it encourages local governments to consider the impacts their zoning decisions have on communities of color, and second, extends the expiration date of building permits or other entitlements necessary for, or pertaining to, a housing development project. This proposed legislation recognizes the extreme health and financial devastation due to this pandemic-induced recession has had on Californians and proposes a measured and time-limited response.

This law extends by 18 months any applicable time frame for any “housing entitlement.” This extension applies to any such entitlement issued prior to and effective on March 4, 2020, and that will expire prior to December 31, 2021.

“Housing entitlement” is defined in the statute to include:

  • A building permit, including extension of any applicable time frame within which an applicant must request issuance of a building permit;
  • “A legislative, adjudicative, administrative, or any other kind of approval, permit, or other entitlement necessary for, or pertaining to, a housing development project issued by a state agency”;
  • “An approval, permit, or other entitlement issued by a local agency for a housing development project that is subject to [the Permit Streamlining Act]”;
  • “A ministerial approval, permit, or entitlement by a local agency required as a prerequisite to issuance of a building permit for a housing...

Residential Property Insurance. Fire Insurance - Consumer Protections

Assembly Bill 2756 Residential Property Insurance - This measure seeks to provide greater information to consumers on their homeowner policies. Additionally, it includes provisions which mandate 10% building code upgrade coverage for replacement cost coverage policies which will work to ensure more homes are rebuilt and existing housing stock is maintained when disaster strikes.

C.A.R. supported this measure as it provides more transparency to homeowners on information related to their home insurance policy.

Assembly Bill 3012 Residential Property Insurance -  This measure among other provisions, provides that certain information be included in a notice of nonrenewal of a homeowners insurance policy, clarifies that a policyholder shall receive the full amount of what would have been recoverable if the home were to be rebuilt at the original location, clarifies that policies which include additional living expenses (ALE) shall not limit claims if the home is uninhabitable, but not destroyed.  Additionally, the bill states that a policyholder is entitled to a payment of 30% (up to $250,000) of the stated policy limit for contents coverage in the event of a total loss without itemization and directs the FAIR plan to create a clearinghouse of policy information that should be made available to admitted insurers to encourage them to offer policies to FAIR plan customers.

C.A.R. supported this measure as it will help to alleviate the home insurance crisis that many Californians in wildfire prone areas face.

Senate Bill 872 ...

Fire: Defensible Space: Creation of Ember-Resistant Zone within Five Feet of a Structure

Establishes, upon appropriation, an ember-resistant zone within five feet of a structure as part of the defensible space requirements for structures located in specified high fire hazard areas.  Requires removal of material from the ember-resistant zone based on the probability that vegetation and fuel will lead to ignition of the structure by ember.  

However, CAL Fire will NOT changer defensible space inspection practices and forms or enforcement to to implement the requirement for an ember-resistant zone until the director makes a written finding that the legislature has approrpriated sufficient resources to do so, which the director will post on CAL Fire's website, that the Legislature has appropriated sufficient resources to do so.  Moreover, this law is to be "based on regulations" by CAL Fire, and the promulgation of these regulations is "contingent upon an appropriation by the Legislature in the annual Budget Act of another stature for this purpose."

Current law requires a person who owns, leases, controls, operates, or maintains an occupied dwelling or structure to maintain a defensible space of 100 feet from each side of the structure.  This bill would require more instense fuel reductions between 5 and 30 feet around the structure and create an ember-resistant zone within 5 feet of the structure to help reduce ember ignitions.

1)  An ember-resistant zone shall include any attached deck.

2)  Required the Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (CAL FIRE) to not change defensible space inspeciton...

Deeds: Extended Revocable Transfer on Death Deed Law

Law authorizing simple procedure for transfer of property upon death is extended for one year.

The California Law Revision Commission issued its report on the Revocable Transfer on Death Deed (RTDD) in November 2019, recommending that a number of changes be made to the RTDD process,
but that overall the RTDD should be extended for another 10 years and that the CLRC do a further
study prior to that 10-year sunset. (CLRC, Revocable Transfer on Death Deed: Follow-Up Study (Nov. 2019).) However, given the COVID-19 pandemic, the Legislature’s focus has been on the health emergency and its very difficult economic onsequences.

It has not been on other less urgent matters, including the future of the RTDD and the CLRC report. To ensure that the RTDD can continue until the Legislature can fully review the CLRC report and recommendations, this law extends the January 1, 2021 sunset for one additional year, until January 1, 2022.

Senate Bill 1305 is codified as Probate Code; Section 5600 et seq.

More readings about Laws Affecting Realtors

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Disclosure and Point-of-Sale Compliance - Wildfire Defensible Space and Vegetation Management Laws, and Home Hardening

Disclosure: Disclosure and point-of-sale compliance re wildfire defensible space and vegetation
management laws, and home hardening.

This is a not a 2021 new law. It was passed last year. However, we are including it here because its most signicant provisions become effective January 1, 2021.

Requires delivery of a statutory disclosure re home hardening for homes in designated high fire areas built before 2010, and that seller list specied retrofits.

wild fire areasRequires seller of property located in designated high fire areas to provide buyer with documentation stating that the property is in compliance with local law pertaining to defensible spaces or local vegetation management laws. If there is no such local law, the seller shall provide documentation of compliance with state law, assuming the seller obtained such documentation within six months prior to entering into the transaction. But if neither of the above,the seller and the buyer must enter into a written agreement in which the buyer agrees to obtain documentation of compliance with defensible
space or a local vegetation management ordinance after close.

These disclosure requirements will apply to any property in which the Transfer Disclosure Statement is required to be delivered. TDS exemptions and cancellation rights apply.

Disclosures re Home Hardening Beginning January 1, 2020, if a seller, after completion of construction, has obtained a nal inspection report regarding compliance with, among other things,
home hardening laws (Gov’t...

Simplified California Proposition 19: Break Down of Some Key Aspects

Proposition 19, Simplified:

proposition_19_voting_resultCalifornia Proposition 19 saw victory at the ballot box last November, and the new property tax breaks for some — and increases for others — will start affecting Californians in the coming months. Follow along as we break down some of the key aspects of this complex proposition. And for more in-depth information, check out the full Legal Q&A at on.car.org/prop19qa.

First off, who can take advantage of the tax portability benefits from Prop. 19?

All Californians who:

• Are over 55 years of age;

• Are severely disabled; or

• Own a home that has been substantially damaged due to wildfire or natural disaster.

For people in these groups, Prop. 19 made three significant changes to the way property taxes are calculated when they sell a principal residence and move into a new primary residence. What are those changes?

Sellers in these groups can now transfer the tax basis of their primary residence to a replacement property anywhere in the State of California. Previously, inter-county transfers were done on a limited basis.

Sellers in these groups can now transfer the tax basis of their sold property to their replacement property regardless of value. Previously, transfers had to be only to properties of equal or lesser value. (Some adjustments will be made if the property is of greater value.) Sellers and these groups may take advantage of this benefit up to three times — and victims of wildfires and other natural disasters have no limitations. Previously, sellers could only make use of this transfer...

Consumer Protection and Landlord Tenant: Utility Billing to Sub-metered Customers

Requires billing of sub-metered customers at the actual rate of the utilities generating the electricity for entities acting within the territory of an electric corporation.

Current Law:
Currently, a master-meter customer is required to charge each user at the same rate that would be applicable if the user were receiving gas or electricity directly from the gas or electrical corporations.

master-meter_customer_submeterIf a master-meter customer receives a rebate for electrical or gas service, it is required to distribute the rebate to, or credit the rebate to the account of, current users served by the master-meter customer.

These rules relate to the responsibilities of a gas or electrical corporations and master-meter customers when gas or electrical service is provided by a mastermeter customer to users who are tenants of a mobile home park, apartment building, or similar residential complex. (Public Utilities Code §739.5)

New Law:
This law extends these existing protections for submetered customers of electrical corporations to all sub-metered customers, even where the entity providing the electricity is an electric load-serving entity operating with the territory of the electric corporation.

Senate Bill 1117 is codified as Public Utilities Code Section 739.5. Effective January 1, 2021.

More readings

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Consumer Protection: Translated Copy of Contracts Expands Requirements to Include Co-Signers or Any Person Signing the Contract

The requirement of providing a translated copy of a contract negotiated primarily in Spanish, Chinese, Tagalog, Vietnamese, or Korean, orally or in writing, is expanded to include any person signing the contract, not just the parties to the contract.

translated contractsCurrent law requires that any person engaged in a trade or business who negotiates primarily in Spanish, Chinese, Tagalog, Vietnamese, or Korean, orally or in writing, in the course of entering into specified contracts, deliver to the other party to the contract or agreement, prior to the execution thereof, a translation of the contract or agreement in the language in which the contract or agreement was negotiated that includes a translation of every term and condition in that contract or agreement.

A lease, sublease, rental contract or agreement, or other term of tenancy contract or agreement, for a period of longer than one month, covering a dwelling, apartment, mobile home, or other dwelling unit normally occupied as a residence are included in the types of contracts to which the translation requirement applies.

However, currently there is no requirement to provide translated versions of the contract or agreement to co-signers or other nonparties to the contract who are nevertheless signing the contract.

This new law expands the translation requirement...

Consumer Protection: PACE Liens C.A.R. sponsored law mandating a paper copy of the PACE disclosure, prohibits prepayment penalties, and prohibits PACE assessments when a reverse mortgage is in place.

PACE disclosure Assembly Bill 1551This law mandates a paper copy of the PACE disclosure be given to potential customers. Also, prohibits prepayment penalties for those who wish to pay off their assessment (commonly done at the time of the transaction) and prohibits PACE assessments when a reverse mortgage is in place.

BACKGROUND:
PACE programs enable home owners to finance energy and water efficient home upgrades such as solar panels, landscaping, new windows, new HVAC systems, new roofs and energy efficient appliances. It also allows for home mprovements that "harden" a home against wildfire danger.

The financing requires no money up front and is repaid through an additional assessment on the property owner's property tax bill. The loan is secured to the property through a super-priority lien that takes rest in line status over all other claims to the property. Despite the low risk for the lender of such financing, PACE financing typically carries rates of 6.5 to 8.5 percent, higher than the average for a home equity loan.

Some PACE administrator companies also have prepayment penalties associated with their products. Although PACE financing must be sanctioned through a local government entity, the financing is conducted entirely through private enterprise. "Homeowners are sometimes told they are not responsible for the assessment if they sell the property and that it will carry over to the new homeowner. While technically accurate, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac will not purchase a mortgage with a lien that has higher priority than theirs. Thus, in practice the assessment must be paid...

Law that Authorizes Common Interest Developments (CID) to Impose Rental Restrictions

Common Interest Developments:
Law on Common Interest Development (CID)Requires common interest developments (CIDs) to allow at least 25% of owners to rent or lease out their units starting January 1, 2021, regardless of whether the HOA has formally amended their governing documents.

This law:

1) Authorizes a CID to impose reasonable rental restrictions that have the effect of limiting the total number of rentals to 25% or higher of the individual dwelling units in the CID. Provides that ADUs and junior accessory dwelling units (JADUs) must not be counted toward this cap. Provides that such a cap must not change the right of an individual owner who was renting their unit out prior to the effective date of this law, to continue renting out their unit.

2) Requires CIDs to follow the requirements of this law on January 1, 2021 and requires amendments of governing documents to be completed by CIDs by December 31, 2021. Requires CIDs to comply with this law regardless of whether the governing documents have been amended.

3) Provides that a CID that violates the provisions of this law must be liable for a civil penalty of up to $1,000.

Assembly Bill 3182 is codified as Civil Code Sections 4740 and 4741, and Government Code Sections 65852.2.

Effective January 1, 2021.

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Current Homes for Sale
Santa Cruz County
City # Price Range
Aptos Homes 66 $405k - $6.8m
Capitola Homes 37 $75k - $11.9m
Rio Del Mar / Seascape Homes 34 $405k - $6.8m
Santa Cruz Events 168 $76k - $10.0m
Santa Cruz Homes 168 $76k - $10.0m
Santa Cruz Real Estate 168 $76k - $10.0m
Monterey County
City # Price Range
$0-$300000 272 $75k - $5.5m
Alta Mesa-Monterey 272 $75k - $5.5m
Big Sur Homes 6 $1.8m - $30.0m
Carmel Homes 156 $15k - $24.0m
Fishermans Flats 272 $75k - $5.5m
Glenwood Circle Monterey 272 $75k - $5.5m
Monterey Homes For Sale 272 $75k - $5.5m
Oak Grove Monterey 272 $75k - $5.5m
Old Town Monterey 272 $75k - $5.5m
Pebble Beach Homes 40 $799k - $29.9m
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