Vista Sotheby’s International Realty - Lesli Koontz

My Blog

2022 Paint Colors

12/1/2021
2022 Paint Colors

Living by the beach is special. For those of us who choose it, there’s something elemental about the pull of the ocean and the feel of sand on your feet. It’s a lifestyle choice reflected in the way we act – laid back, the way we dress – casual, and the way we decorate our homes.

And for those of you out there who love decorating, you know there’s no easier way to freshen a space than with a coat of paint. That’s why I love this time of year…yes the colors for 2022 have been released. And I’m pleased to say that the color palate for 2022 meshes perfectly with the beach lifestyle.

Hi, I’m Lesli with Lesli Koontz Real Estate, brokered by Vista Sothebys International Real Estate. Not only do paint colors affect the look of your space, they can affect your mood and the mood of your guests. So when you’re thinking about the colors you choose, think about how those colors make you feel, and choose appropriately for the space. Maybe you want something more energetic in your office, and something more relaxing in your bedroom. So, what’s on trend for 2022? Green, green, and more green. Benjamin Moore’s color of the year, October mist, is a soft, silvery sage green that goes well with a variety of other colors. And if that’s not enough, Benjamin Moores’ 2022 color palette includes 5 more greens – Quiet Moments, Morning Dew, Fernwood Green, High Park, and Gloucester Sage. You’ll also find some shades of white – Steam and Collectors Item, a soft yellow – Pale Moon,  a soft purple - Hint of Violet, Mysterious - a dark blue, a couple of neutral shades – Natural Linen and Venetian Portico, and Wild Flower, a shade of red with hints of pink and orange.

To be honest, I love all of them with the exception of Wild Flower which feels a little too Southwestern for my taste, and doesn’t seem like the right vibe for our laid back beach lifestyle. I’d love to hear your thoughts on this year’s color palette. Lesli with Lesli Koontz Real Estate, putting your family first.

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Vacation Home Ownership

11/22/2021
Dreaming of Owning a Vacation Home?

Have you been dreaming of owning a vacation home? Did you know there are other benefits to vacation home ownership besides personal pleasure? Hi, I’m Lesli with Lesli Koontz Real Estate brokered by Vista Sotheby’s International Realty right here in the South Bay and I want you to know that you can enjoy a vacation home while it helps pay for itself through rental income!

Here are some tips and tricks when looking for an investment vacation home property.

Tip #1 – LOCATION LOCATION LOCATION. We hear it all the time and it is the first rule in real estate for a very good reason and even more so when talking about vacation homes. The two primary things you need to consider are: Where do I want to escape from it all and is this also somewhere others are interested in - will renters want to rent my vacation home?

Tip #2. RENTAL RESTRICTIONS – Pay attention to what the rules and regulations are when investing in a property. You can contact the HOA and or the city to see what’s allowed and what’s not allowed.

Tip #3. PROPERTY MANAGEMENT. For those of you who don’t have the time and energy to devote to advertising a property, handling the lease, collecting rent, paying the taxes and dealing with maintenance issues, a property manager is a great asset.

Tip #4 COSTS – As you can imagine, there are costs associated with owning a second home. There are condo/HOA fees, property taxes, insurance, property management fees, utilities, and general property maintenance. These can add up so know them ahead of time as well as the realistic rental potential of your new home.

Tip #5 KNOW WHAT YOUR SEASON IS - When is the prime season people come to your location for a vacation? Bonus Tip: Make sure you are working with a knowledgeable Realtor who knows and loves the community you are looking in and has expertise in dealing with Rental properties.

If you would like guidance in your search for your happy place vacation home, connect with me and I will help you navigate the ins and outs of home buying! Lesli with Lesli Koontz Real Estate putting your family first.

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October National Market Update

11/18/2021
October National Market Update

Here’s Your October National Market Update and what you can expect in price Changes and Appreciation.

Hi there, this is Lesli with Lesli Koontz Real Estate brokered by Vista Sotheby’s International Realty right here in the South Bay and this is everything you need to know about the changes in the housing market for the month of October. Calculated Risk concludes that the annual growth rate of 19.7% is probably close to a peak, and that the year-over year price increases will slow down as the year continues. Closings are set to decline roughly 10% year over year in the second half of 2021 and home price appreciation is on the cusp of flipping to a decelerating trend. Again, there will be an appreciation trend, just at a slower, more moderate rate than what we’ve been seeing in the previous months. That being said, don’t expect prices to decline. 

Buying now is really mission critical because prices will continue to rise and interest rates are expected to rise too which will lead to declining purchasing power. In a normal market, Fall is usually the start of the slower season… but we all know this has not been a normal market. Nationally, Potential buyers are seeing a slight rise in inventory while mortgage applications jumped over 7% which is the highest level we’ve seen since April. It may seem like things are slowing down, but this is only because the last two years have not been normal; however, 2019 was the last normal year and we’re already doing better in existing home sales in comparison.

When will the number of listings peak? There are three reasons professionals like me think listings will continue to increase throughout the fall and into the winter months.

1. There is a pent up selling demand and homeowners are starting to feel more comfortable with the idea of putting their home on the market as more people are getting vaccinated; therefore, having people into their homes for open houses or property tours is less of a potential risk.

2. New construction is taking place and starting to grow more rapidly, allowing more options for potential buyers and current homeowners to consider when they sell; there is no longer a lack of options compared to the options sellers had in the past.

3. It’s the end of the forbearance period and that is creating new listings. Now, we’re not expecting this to lead to a wave of foreclosures because homeowners today, with the recent explosion of equity growth, will be able to sell their homes and have enough equity to more than cover the expenses of actually selling. As far as interest rates are concerned, we are expecting to see rates increase with the Federal Reserves’ recent announcement that they will soon begin reducing the pace of monthly bond purchases, the first step toward pulling back on the massive amount of help the Fed had been providing markets and the economy.

If you have any questions, I’m always available to help – Lesli with Lesli Koontz Real Estate putting your family first.

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October Local Market Update

11/16/2021
October Local Market Update

Here’s your October Local Market Update for Redondo Beach California. We’re currently shifting into the fourth quarter of the year which means that there will be changes in the real estate market as the Holiday season approaches.

Hi this is Lesli with Lesli Koontz Real Estate brokered by Vista Sotheby’s International Realty right here in the South Bay, and here is what we’re seeing in the local market.

We continue to see low inventory across Redondo Beach, and that has continued to drive prices up. In South Redondo Beach, zip code 90277, the median sales price was 1.475 million, up 31.1% over October of 2020. In the month of October, 27 new homes came on the market, down 22.9% from last year, there were a total of 39 homes active on the market, a decrease of 43.5% from this time last year, the average days on market was 10, down 61.5% from last year, with a total of 1.1 months of available inventory, down a staggering 45% from last year.

In North Redondo Beach, zip code 90278, the median sales price was 1.3 million which is an increase of 22.8% over October of 2020. In the month of October 27 new homes came on the market, down 56.5% from last year, there were a total of 46 homes active on the market, a decrease of 41% from this time last year, the average days on market was 10, down 9% from last year, with a total of 1 month of available inventory, down a staggering 54.5% from last year.

OCTOBER LOCAL MARKET UPDATE (1).pngAs we approach the holidays, inventory levels typically decrease even further. If you have questions about buying or selling, and how what we’re seeing in the market will affect you, reach out. I’m always happy to help. Again, this is Lesli with Lesli Koontz Real Estate putting your family first.

September National Market Update

10/14/2021
September National Market Update

Are you wondering what’s happening in the National Real Estate market? Home appreciation is continuing to run hot, with average increases in July of more than nineteen percent, and in August of fourteen point nine percent. So the good news is – at least for buyers – that home appreciation is cooling slightly, with more housing inventory coming on to the market, which may cool appreciation even further.

Nearly one-third of the 50 largest metros saw increases in the number of newly listed homes compared to last year, according to a new report from realtor.com®. That said, there are still fewer homes for sale than a year ago. According to Odeta Kushi, Deputy Chief Economist, First American, 
“We are seeing some signs of softening in the housing market, but context is important here…We’re still very much in a sellers’ market.” New data shows the level of competition - and ensuing price increases - may be cooling off just slightly.

Data shows that 49.6% of homes sold for more than the initial list price in July - far ahead 
of the number reported in July 2020, when 26.8% of homes were sold above initial asking price, but below June’s total when 50.4% of homes sold for more than initially listed.” Increasing home prices have meant that home mortgage payments have been steadily increasing over the last several months, with home affordability on the wane. We may continue to see this trend as interest rates are expected to rise over the coming months with the fed worried about inflation.

If you’re thinking about buying, homes are less affordable, but not unaffordable. Let’s chat to find out what makes sense for you and your budget. If you’re considering selling, now is a great time – take advantage before buyer demand drops.

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September Local Market Update

10/12/2021
September Local Market Update

What's happening here in our local neighborhood? Is now a good time to buy or sell a home in the Hollywood Riviera, or Redondo Beach 90277 and 90278? Currently, as of the time of this video, in the Hollywood Riviera we have 34 active homes and 11 homes pending. 13 homes sold in the Hollywood Riviera in the month of September, with a median price of  1.775 million and a median days on market of 9. I

n South Redondo Beach, 90277, we have 51 homes on the market, 24 pending, 40 sold, with a median price of 1.388 million and a median days on market of 9.

In North Redondo, there are 55 active homes, 31 pending, and 36 have been sold. The median price is 1.385 million, and the median days on market is a short 9. 

Generally, 3 to 6 months of inventory is considered a balanced market, In the Hollywood Riviera, we have 1.3 months supply of inventory, in South Redondo as a whole, we have 1.5 months of inventory, and in North Redondo, we have only 1.2 months of inventory.

What does all of this mean? We’re still seeing a strong sellers market with limited inventory in Redondo Beach with no relief in sight. Feel free to call me with any questions. I am here to advise you on how to maximize your buying and or selling experience. Lesli with Lesli Koontz Real Estate putting your family first!

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Divorce - It's Complicated

9/30/2021
Divorce - It's Complicated

Eeenie Meenie Minny Mo, Catch a Realtor by the Toe!

Unfortunately, we in life have difficult decisions to make and situations to face, and divorce is one of those. Divorce is a sensitive topic and it's best to work with someone who works to ensure the balance is fair to all parties.

I am a certified real estate divorce specialist. It’s a tough decision to sell your home and finding a skilled realtor is first and foremost. It's best to choose a person that represents you both and is unbiased.

As a realtor it’s my job to get the best qualified offer and terms and to understand what my sellers need to make this a smooth transition. Though not something to celebrate, I can help you sell and move on in an amicable manner. If you want to discuss this in detail, call me, Lesli at Lesli Koontz Real Estate, putting your family first!

It's Complicated.pngAnd please I am not an attorney or tax consultant, I’m just giving some free advice so be sure to speak to the appropriate parties during this difficult time.

Divorce Is Difficult - What you Need to Know from a Real Estate Perspective

9/28/2021
Where Love May Fade

Where love may fade, mortgage contracts endure. The fate of the family home is decided during the divorce negotiations and often it ends up being sold. While both divorcing parties hire their own attorneys to represent them and only them, in most cases both parties must agree on the agent who will sell their home or the court will appoint one. So how do you pick the best agent to represent both parties interests?

Hi I’m Lesli with Lesli Koontz Real Estate brokered by Vista Sotheby’s International Realty. I am a certified real estate divorce specialist, and I am prepared to help in these sensitive situations.

Mediation is one of the most frequently used methods of negotiating a divorce settlement. In divorce mediation, you and your spouse hire a neutral third party, called a mediator, to meet with you in an effort to discuss and resolve the issues in your divorce. The mediator doesn't make decisions for you, but serves as a facilitator to help you and your spouse figure out what's best. Think about your Realtor as a Real Estate Mediator. Consider experienced agents over friends or relatives with little or no experience. Interview at least three agents before hiring one.

Although depending on market conditions, you may be able to sell the home yourself, it's always more difficult to do so during times of stress, and you really should let a professional take over. Ideally, you should hire an agent who isn’t just neutral, but one who also has a solid understanding of the unique problems and issues that often occur during the sale of a house due to divorce. The real estate agent you hire needs to have a firm grasp on these subtle problems and issues and not get caught up in the fray. Your agent needs to be fair, but firm, and make sure the process is as smooth as possible. And that includes being able to identify any underlying reasons why things are happening and being able to help you resolve them. Selling a house can be an emotional and stressful process for even the happiest couple in the world to go through and going through a divorce can add to that. An experienced professional will be able to protect your privacy, understand and represent your motivations during negotiations and represent both of you equally during the sale of your home. Again, this is Lesli with Lesli Koontz Real Estate putting your family first! And please I am not an attorney or tax consultant, I’m just giving some free advice so be sure to speak to the appropriate parties during this difficult time.

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Divorcing and Decided to Sell? Now What?

9/23/2021
You've Decided to Sell - Now What?

Are you a little overwhelmed thinking about where you’re going to go after your home sells in the divorce? Are you losing sleep because you’re not sure what to do?

Here are 3 steps to help you put a plan in place and restore some calm to your life. Hi I’m Lesli with Lesli Koontz Real Estate brokered by Vista Sotheby’s International Realty and I can help. I’ve found that putting a plan in place while you’re selling your marital home, enables you to take the guesswork out of what your next step is.

First, now that you’ve decided to sell your home, you’ll want to have a discussion with your realtor about the net proceeds from the sale. How will the proceeds be split with your ex? Also, you’ll need to understand when the proceeds will be available to you.

Second, once you know approximately what your share of the proceeds will be, you’ll want to decide if you want to buy another home or if you want to rent for a period after the sale. Regardless of what choice you make, you’ll want to put a budget together based on your new income which may or may not include alimony and/or child support.

And Last, once you have a budget, if you decide to purchase another home, contact a lender to get pre-approved on your next purchase subject to or contingent on the sale of the marital home. You will have to provide income documentation and asset information and they will request a copy of your Divorce Decree. The decree will state the terms of your alimony and child support and will be required if you are using these to qualify for your next purchase. In many cases, you will need to be receiving your child support and alimony for a minimum of six months before a lender can use this income and it must continue for a minimum of three years from closing. Because lending guidelines are constantly changing, this is another reason to discuss your personal situation with a lender to obtain your pre approval.

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By taking these three steps, you will be able to put a plan in place for the next chapter of your life after selling your marital home. If you need to discuss these items further, please feel free to call, text, or email me. Again, this is Lesli with Lesli Koontz Real Estate putting your family first! And please I am not an attorney or tax consultant, I’m just giving some free advice so be sure to speak to the appropriate parties during this difficult time.

August National Market Update

8/30/2021
August National Market Update

Is the market slowing? Well, from a national perspective, yes.

Nationally, this is the first month that we’ve seen buyer demand decrease since last November. Also, the Fannie Mae Home Purchase Sentiment Index® (the HPSI) decreased 3.9 points to 75.8 in July, as consumers continue to report concerns related to high home prices and a lack of homes for sale.

On the buy-side, 66 percent of respondents said it’s a bad time to buy a home, up from 64 percent last month; The percentage of respondents citing high home prices as the top reason for it being a ‘bad time to buy’ also reached an all-time high. Not surprisingly, with what we’ve seen happening in the market – high prices and low inventory, buyers are feeling a bit defeated. But, with the earlier start to the school year – there may be some relief in sight. Typically homes remain on the market a little longer at this time of year. Families with kids may not be focused on a move when they’re dealing with back-to-school stuff, so there might be less competition.

But - buyers beware -  Real Estate experts Freddie Mac, Fannie Mae, the Mortgage Bankers Association and The National Association of Realtors, are all forecasting interest rates to go up, which means it’s going to cost you more to borrow money and you’ll qualify for less, so if you’re on the fence about buying, now may be a good time. Also, according to J.P. Morgan Insights Report and I quote “Hombuyers  - Interest rates are still historically low, though they are inching up. Housing prices have spiked during the last six-to-nine months, but (and buyers, here is where you need to listen in) but, we don’t expect them to fall soon, and we believe they are more likely to keep rising. If you're looking to purchase a new home, conditions now may be better than 12 months hence…..” end quote.

So I hope this information was helpful. I’m Lesli with Lesli Koontz Real Estate and that’s what’s happening Nationally in our Real Estate market. I’ll be covering our local market in my next video, so be sure to subscribe to my YouTube channel for the latest updates. If you have questions, don’t hesitate to call. I’m always happy to help. Lesli with Lesli Koontz Real Estate, putting your family first!

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