Our South Bay Community Blog

Consider basic needs to assemble the right tools for home repairsJust as it's unwise to drive a car without a spare tire and working jack, no home should be without basic tools to make simple repairs—whether it's to do simple maintenance around the house or to DIY larger projects. A home repair kit is easy to assemble. Use a collapsible fabric bucket, a plastic tote or a metal lunchbox as a portable tool kit, and buy only necessary items rather than spending big bucks for a coordinated set.

Here are the items every homeowner should have:

Hammers & Screwdrivers

There are many different types of hammers, but a basic clawfoot hammer is indispensable. Use it to hang artwork or pry off an old piece of trim, build a deck or pound a garden stake into the ground. Look for a hammer with good balance and one that

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What to Know About Spray Foam InsulationHomeowners looking to address drafts and improve the envelope of their home may be looking to add a home insulation product, especially if they live in an older home. While there are many types of home insulation on the market, only a few can improve energy efficiency in a home while being able to be used on irregular or hard to reach areas. Spray foam is one of the products worth considering that may help homeowners address cracks, leaks or gaps in an existing or newly constructed home.

Even those not currently interested in the high return on investment that may be derived from improving insulation in a home may appreciate the additional comfort and lower bills associated with heating or cooling a home with properly installed home insulation.

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Information About Buying LandBuying or selling land can be very different from buying or selling a home. Homeowners who want to buy or sell land should understand these differences before starting the process.

For informational purposes only. Always consult with a licensed mortgage professional before proceeding with any real estate transaction.

The Process of Buying Land

Buying land is exciting under the right circumstances. Knowing that there may one day be a house on a property can make buying that property very rewarding. Below are some of the ways that buying land is different from buying a house.

Financing Differences When Buying Land

It's hard to get a loan for land, and some land buyers may find it impossible. Banks need a house in order to leverage the

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Popular Home Styles As anyone who's done even a bit of casual house hunting can tell you, real estate has a language all its own. As you begin looking for a home, it's helpful to know your way around some of the terms used to describe a home's style.

As you become more fluent in the language of real estate, you'll be better at scanning a listing to see if it's a house you're interested in, or if it's one you can skip.

To get started, here's a list of common house styles and descriptors, along with their definitions.

Typical American Home Styles

There are a number of different styles of home available to prospective homeowners. Whether a homeowner wants a cozy cottage tucked away from the bustle of the city, whether they want a large porch, or a

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What to Know About Selling For Sale By OwnerWhen selling a home, there are several questions homeowners have to ask themselves. What price should the home be listed at? How should they stage the home to encourage buyer interest? When should they put the house on the market? What sort of curb appeal would best suit their home? What repairs need to be made? Normally, these questions—and more—are answered with the help of a Palos Verdes Estates real estate agent, but that isn't the case when a homeowner chooses to sell their home as For Sale By Owner.

For Sale By Owner (FSBO) is a home-selling option usually utilized by sellers who don't want to give up a chunk of their home sale profits to a real estate agent. As tempting as this may sound though, the disadvantages of this choice tend to

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What To Do When You Recieve a Bad Home Inspection ReportSelling your home involves several steps, from selecting the right real estate professional to preparing for showings and dealing with various obstacles. A common obstacle many home sellers face is dealing with the buyer's bad home inspection report.

So, what happens if a house fails inspection? When a home inspection report comes back loaded with negative items, remember, you have options—a bad home inspection for sellers should never be a cause for panic.

Defining a Home Inspection

The American society of Home Inspectors defines a home inspection as "a documented, professional opinion of a home-based on a visual evaluation and operational testing of the home's systems and components to determine their current condition."

Both sellers

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3 Common Home Dangers To Be Careful AboutThe home may seem like one of the safest possible places to be, but this fallacy can lead homeowners into a dangerous trap. Preventable accidents are not only common, but they can also be incredibly harmful to the residents of the home (or even the neighbors.) Luckily, it doesn't have to be difficult or time-consuming to spot and fix common hazards. Here are a few simple things everyone can do today to identify the hot spots around their Palos Verdes home so that something can be done.

Check the Walkways

From stairs to walking paths to hallways, there are multiple ways a person can slip and fall. Some falls can't be helped, but homeowners do have the power to fix their railings or install better lighting. Homeowners can put rugs down to

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What You Need to Know About Selling a Home With Unpermitted WorkPermitted work is work that has been performed to code, with inspections from local officials to ensure that the construction is safe. Unpermitted work is work that has not been certified by local inspectors. Safety and quality cannot be guaranteed in unpermitted work.

As a result, many home buyers shy away from unpermitted work. Even for buyers who are willing to take the personal risk that construction might not be safe, unpermitted work can still make finding a loan a challenge. Therefore, unpermitted work can present a challenge for home sellers. Knowing what to do about unpermitted construction can help you sell your property.

Do You Have to Disclose Unpermitted Work?

If you are aware of unpermitted work done to your home, then you

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How a Real Estate Agent Can Help Sell Your HomeA good real estate agent who offers good customer service is critical during the home selling process. The most customer-service orientated real estate professionals will help their clients in many ways.

Suggest Repairs and Home Improvements

Many home sellers aren't quite sure where to focus their energy when preparing their house to sell, but the best customer service oriented real estate professionals can help with this. Before the first buyers come to see a home, a good real estate professional will suggest repairs and improvements. Some of the improvements may boost curb appeal and stage the interior. Other repairs can actually improve the resale value of the home.

Post the Listing and Market the Home

A customer-service oriented

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3 Facts About the Millennial Home BuyerThe Millennial age group is the fastest growing demographic of home buyers at present, and has outpaced the Baby Boomers as the largest generation. Although home buyers in their 20s and 30s are like preceding generations in many ways, there are a few differences, as well. Here are a few rumors and realities about the Millennial home buyer.

Myth: Millennials Don't Want to Purchase Homes (or Can't)

Reality: Homeownership rates have dropped a bit in every demographic group, but people in their 20s and 30s are just as interested as their predecessors. The housing crisis served as a significant financial setback for all age groups, and many decided to get out of the market altogether. However, in the decade since, the youngest adults are starting

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