5 Mortgage Musts for Torrance CA Homebuyers

There are a number of things a buyer needs to do to get a mortgage and the earlier these are done in the process the less stressful the process.  Knowing about your financing abilities eliminates many challenges and stresses that may come up in the home buyer process in Torrance and the loan process for any Southern California home.  Also see how a change in your rate can greatly impact how much of a home you qualify for.  Here are 5 essential steps to successfully navigating the mortgage process:

  1. Get pre-approved:  In a highly competitive housing market, it’s imperative to be pre-approved to give yourself the best chance of an offer being considered.  Most realtors and sellers won’t even consider an offer with financing if a preapproval letter isn’t included.
  2. Choose a realtor that can help mitigate appraisal problems.  A good realtor will meet the appraiser with the most current information in hand.  As a local real estate expert often knows more than the appraiser, the realtor may have insight and information not readily available to the appraiser.
  3. Know your credit score:    It’s not only important to have good credit and know your credit score, but equally important that your credit score stays the same throughout the escrow process.  No big purchases, no opening numerous new credit lines and no late or missed payments.
  4. Review the closing disclosure forms or CD.  Due to regulations, lenders must provide you with a closing disclosure at least 3 days before closing in order to see fees, details, etc.
  5. Make it through underwriting:  Before you get loan clearance and final approval, your mortgage has to go through the underwriting process.  Be ready and supply the underwriters with all requested documents quickly to avoid the stress of needing to ask the seller for extra time.  Most loan contingency periods are 21 days or shorter so time is of the essence in the loan process.

Torrance Alternative: Remodeled Single Family at 6439 Denmead

The living room area opens directly to the kitchen and dining areas as well as the sliders to the backyard.  The kitchen is the true showcase of

the home with quartz countertops, gleaming cabinetry, oversized kitchen island, black stainless steel appliances and custom LED lighting.  Perfect for entertaining, the kitchen offers plenty of room for family gatherings and neighborhood get togethers.   Sliders just off of the dining area make for the easy enjoyment of the great yard and patio areas and make for perfect indoor outdoor living.  The huge backyard offers an abundance of space from the large grassy yard to the mature avocado, tangerine, dwarf lemon, dwarf orange, persimmon trees to the raised garden beds.

6439 Denmead, Lakewood CA

This is the home you have been looking for.  From the moment you enter you’re struck by the bright and open concept layout perfect for today’s lifeastyle.  The home was recently expanded and extensively remodeled with no expense spared.  Enter through the beautiful glass front doors inset with decorative iron and into the expansive living room.  You are immediately struck by a sense of space found in only luxury homes. This custom redesign and remodel was inspired by the California lifestyle with open spaces and direct access to the oversize yard and patio with indoor outdoor living in mind.

  • Priced at $715,000
  • 3 Bedroom + office, 2 1/2 Bath
  • 1,850 Sq Feet
  • Huge 8000+ foot lot

With no direct neighbors off of the backyard the yard enjoys a fantastic level of privacy.  The home offers 3 spacious bedrooms including the beautiful master suite.  Enjoying great light with an abundance of windows and doors fronting the yard, the master suite offers the perfect retreat.  Dazzling master bath features include dual vanities, separate tub and frameless rain shower.  The additional two bedroom face the front of the home allowing great light and airflow with beautiful flooring, large windows and brushed nickel ceiling fans.  Hall bath enjoys beautiful tile work, frameless glass shower/tub and more.   Additional details in this wonderful home include a separate laundry room, power room off of the living area, large office area, new air conditioning unit, tankless water heater, solar power, and a two car detached garage.

Contact listing agent Keith Kyle with Vista Sotheby’s International Realty for more information or for a private showing.

5507 W 149th Place #11 in Fusion South Bay – Our Latest Listing

If you’re looking for a home in the West Torrance and North Torrance areas we may have an alternative:

5507 W 149th Place in Fusion South Bay

  • Listed for $847,500
  • 3 bedroom, 2 1/2 bath
  • 1,790 sq feet (based on builder specs…buyer to verify)
  • Gated community of Fusion South Bay

Welcome home to this stunning and rare 3 bedroom “J” floorplan in Fusion South Bay. This home was originally a model home & offers upgrades rarely seen in the community. This highly sought after layout offers all living spaces on a single level and the flexible floorplan allows for the layout to adapt to every lifestyle. Bathed in natural light with oversized windows and high ceilings throughout, the home offers a spacious and bright living room with built in entertainment center, recessed lights, custom designed/ fitted carpeting with beautiful tile flooring underneath, plantation shutters and more. Perfect for todays lifestyle, the living room open to both dining room and the the kitchen.   Contact listing agent Keith Kyle  or 310.251.2344 with Vista Sotheby’s International Realty for more info or for a private showing.

The stunning kitchen is the showcase of the home with upgrades throughout…granite counters, stainless appliances, 6 burner Wolf range and a large island perfect for entertaining. With 2 spacious bedrooms plus a beautiful master suite on the same level as the living spaces once inside it can feel more like a single family home. Master suite offers numerours upgrades including ceiling fan (a rare find in Fusion), custom tile work in the bathrooms, walk in closet and more. Additional features of the home include 2 car attached side by side garage, air conditioning and great privacy due to it’s location in Fusion. Fusion is a fantastic gated community with pool, spa, basketball court, playground and more and the Manhattan Beach adjacent location is just a short drive to the beach.

As Interest Rates Rise….how Does it Impact Torrance Home Buyers?

Many prospective home buyers are concerned with rising interest rates.  While the Torrance interest rates in 2018 are still historically very low, the concern is justified.  Higher interest rates mean reduced buying power.  With every slight rise in interest rates, the monthly payment increases reducing the price of a home that a buyer can qualify for.  See the chart below for an idea of how different interest rates impact monthly payment and what a buyer’s income needs to be to qualify.

Historical Interest Rates since 1972

Many Torrance CA buyers are concerned with interest rates rising with the Fed making it clear that rates will slowly increats.  That’s certainly a valid concern for potential Torrance homebuyers as a higher interest rate means a higher monthly payment which most often means a lower priced home.  Taken in historical standpoint the current rates are dramatically lower than at just about any other time.  The chart below shows the interest rate on conventional and conforming 30 year fixed rate mortgages.  As we’ll see we’ve basically seen rates drop consistently since the high water mark of 16.3% in 1981.  It certainly makes todays current rate in the mid 4% range seem pretty enticing.

Our Latest Torrance Listing Featured in The Daily Breeze

It’s always a pleasure when one of our listings is recognized by the community as something special. Our listing at 1323 Cota in Old Torrance was mentioned in the Daily Breeze as a home of historical significance. Once owned by the Torrance family themselves, this charming 1914 craftsman on an enormous lot is unique in just about every way.

Take a look at the Daily Breeze article about 1323 Cota in Old Torrance

Beautiful Historic Craftsman in Old Torrance – Just Listed

1323 Cota, Torrance CA 90501

  • $899,000
  • 3 bedroom, 1 1/2 bath
  • Huge 10,500+ foot lot
  • 1,944 Sq Feet
  • Open Houses 7/28 1pm-4pm and 7/29 1pm-4pm

This California Craftsman Executive Home is a magnificent, rare find. Built in 1914 on huge R2 lot near Nativity Church & Triangle Park, one of the most desirable parts of Historic Old Torrance. This 2 story home has fabulous bones & incredibly retains all its Historic charm. The large front porch that tracks the entire width of the house is perfect for sitting on pleasant evenings. Original front door enters into a large living room with large fireplace. The office features the original built-in desk, a coat closet and is accessed through the original pocket doors. The formal dining room has a grand built-in hutch/buffet & wainscoting. A sunny breakfast room is connected to both the dining room & kitchen. The circular downstairs floor plan is great for entertaining with a separate area for the original staircase that wraps through the center of the house. Upstairs are two large bedrooms & another smaller 3rd bedroom. There are 2 separate two car garages in the rear off the alley. Two additional storage rooms are connected to the first garage. Huge 75′ x 140′ lot (10,500 sqft) has endless possibilities including another one story house (Check with City of Torrance Building Dept). Title & Records Search indicate that this house was once owned by Jarred Sidney Torrance. Truly one of Old Torrance’s best properties & a Once-in-a-Lifetime Opportunity to own a piece of local History. To appreciate this house and its craftsmanship you must see it yourself.  Contact listing agent Keith Kyle with Vista Sotheby’s International for more information or for a private showing.  310.251.2344

 

California 2018 Tax Reforms – Specific Changes That Affect Real Estate

Here’s a helpful chart to see how the changes in the tax policy impacts Torrance and all California property owners.

PREVIOUS LAW 2018 LAW
MORTGAGE INTEREST DEDUCTION Capped at $1M Capped at $750,000
STATE AND LOCAL TAX DEDUCTION Unlimited Deduction capped at $10,000 (income, sales and property combined)
CAPITAL GAINS EXEMPTION ON SALE OF PRIMARY RESIDENCE Exclusion of up to $250,000 ($500,000 if married) of gain realized on sale or exchange of principal residence if lived in
for 2 of the last 5 years
No change
1031 LIKE-KIND EXCHANGES Applied to all classes of property (e.g. personal and real) Limits non-recognition of gain to real
property
PERSONAL DEDUCTION Allowed Eliminated
STANDARD DEDUCTION $6,350 individual and $12,7000 if married $12,000 individual and $24,000 if married
MID FOR SECOND HOMES Capped at $750,000
HOME EQUITY LOAN DEDUCTION Capped at $100,000 Not deductible unless the proceeds are used to substantially improve the property
MOVING EXPENSE EXCLUSION AND DEDUCTION Incurred in connection with change in work place Eliminated except for members of armed forces on active duty that move pursuant to military orders
CHILD TAX CREDIT $1,000 for each child $2,000 for each child
DEDUCTION FOR QUALIFIED BUSINESS INCOME OF PASS-THROUGH ENTITIES INCLUDING INDEPENDENT CONTRACTORS None 20% deduction of taxable income phased out above $157,000 ($315,000 if married) for brokerage services
DEPRECIATION RECOVER PERIOD FOR REAL PROPERTY (RESIDENTIAL RENTAL) Recover period is 27.5 years No change
DEPRECIATION RECOVER PERIOD FOR REAL PROPERTY (NONRESIDENTIAL) Recover period is 39 years No change
DEPRECIATION RECOVER PERIOD FOR REAL PROPERTY (LEASEHOLD IMPROVEMENTS) Recover period is 15 years No change

The Do’s and Don’t Of Home Staging in Torrance

Home staging is an important part of the preparation process when selling a house.  Whether fully staging the home using a professional stager, or simply de-cluttering and adding something to the owners current furniture, staging can make the difference between a home selling quickly and sitting on the market.  Here are a few pointers to help prepare your Torrance home for sale.  If you have given any thought to selling your home in Torrance or the South Bay, we can help.  Contact us for information on how we sell homes or find the value of your home in Torrance CA.

 

1108 Harper Redondo Beach – Just Listed in the Golden Hills of North Redondo

Extra high living room windows with western exposure bathes the large living room in natural light. The main level features solid hickory,

distressed hardwood floors, gas fireplace, recessed lights, & gourmet kitchen with granite counters, stainless appliances, 6 burner stove, & ample cabinet and counter space. The open floorplan and high ceilings adds to the sense of space and light. The spacious master suite offers a corner fireplace, private balcony, large windows, walk in closets and the luxurious bath features a spa tub, separate shower, dual sinks & more. First floor offers 2 large bedrooms and direct access to the private and tranquil backyard patio. What make the home truly unique is the very large 3rd floor mezzanine perfect for a playroom, office, den & more. Off of the mezzanine sits a private roof deck perfect for evening sunsets with panoramic city views. At almost 2200 feet this home offers far more space than your traditional Golden Hills home and is awaiting it’s new owner to make it their own.  Contact listing agent Keith Kyle with Vista Sotheby’s International Realty for more information or a private tour.

This is not your typical Golden Hills home. Offering a unique and open layout with soaring ceilings, 3rd floor mezzanine/office overlooking the living room & private roof deck with panoramic city and mountain views, this beautiful home has features rarely seen in Redondo. Located in the highly sought after Jefferson elementary district and just steps from Hermosa Beach, 1108 Harper offers an open layout with all of the bells and whistles of newer construction.

  • Priced at $1,399,000
  • 2,160 Square Feet
  • Built in 2010
  • 3 Bed + Office, 3 Bath
  • Rooftop deck, master bedroom balcony, private backyard patio