Todd & Lisa Sheppard
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Archive for September 2013

Bay Area Median Income Second Highest in US

September 30th, 2013   by lisasheppard


The United States Census Bureau’s annual American Community Survey found that the Bay Area boasts the second-largest median income in the country. It’s news that can only be good for our already healthy real estate market.

To read more, Click Here.

Santa Rosa’s Bennett Valley: Get a Slice of the Country Without Leaving the City

September 26th, 2013   by lisasheppard


Tucked in the middle of three mountain peaks in the southeastern corner of Santa Rosa, Bennett Valley is sure to attract homebuyers and families who seek a rural atmosphere but don’t want to leave the conveniences of the city behind.  Though it’s not far from downtown Santa Rosa, the Bennett Valley neighborhood offers residents a bucolic atmosphere and plenty of outdoor activities.

To read more, Click Here.

Real Estate Roundup: Homebuilders Keep Busy

September 25th, 2013   by lisasheppard

New home construction

Recent news of interest to homebuyers, home sellers, and the home-curious includes a report that construction of new single-family homes is up solidly across the country, with Western states leading the way, and that solar panels are becoming a standard option in new home construction.

To read the full report, Click Here.

California Home Prices Reach Five-Year Highs

September 24th, 2013   by lisasheppard



In August, median sales prices for homes in the state hit their highest levels since late 2007 and are up nearly 30 percent from last year. Not surprisingly, homes in the Bay Area are still much pricier than the California average, as well as harder to come by.

To read more, Click Here.

Your Age Helps Determine the Home You Buy

September 19th, 2013   by lisasheppard

Sausalito homes

A recent survey found stark differences in the choices made by homebuyers depending on age. Younger buyers, for example, typically choose older homes, and the age of the property declines as age of the buyer increases.

To read more, Click Here.

Looking for Home-Improvement Ideas? Consider Upgrading to a ‘Smart Home’

September 18th, 2013   by lisasheppard

Smart-home wiring

Many new homes today have “smart home” technologies already wired into their walls, offering a range of automated options that were unthinkable even 10 years ago. And owners of existing homes will soon be scrambling to catch up.

To read more, Click Here.


Real Estate Roundup: Bay Area Home Sales See Seasonal August Slips

September 17th, 2013   by lisasheppard

Illustration of a person in front of a for-sale sign

Recent news of interest to homebuyers, home sellers, and the home-curious includes a report that Bay Area home sales leveled off in August and prices dipped slightly. Also, a discussion on the impact of rising mortgage rates and a report on homeowners regaining equity. And in the we’re-not-making-this-up department, observers see a link between rising home prices and divorce rates.

To read more, Click Here.

Pacific Union’s August Real Estate Update

September 16th, 2013   by lisasheppard



As was the case in Marin, Sonoma County home prices saw an August drop after attaining yearly peaks in July. The median sales price in the county fell to $440,000, an 8 percent month-over-month slide. That said, prices in Sonoma County have been above $400,000 since March.

Homes lasted and average of 68 days on the market, three days shorter than in July. The MSI in Sonoma County shrunk slightly to 1.8 but is still in the same neighborhood as it has been since the spring.

Sellers received 97.5 percent of their homes’ original prices, consistent with what we saw in June and July.

To read about other Bay Area counties, Click Here.

Shortage of Lots Will Drive New-Home Prices Even Higher

September 9th, 2013   by lisasheppard

New-home construction

Are you trying to choose between buying an existing home or a newly constructed one? Look for new-home prices to jump dramatically in the coming months, as homebuilders face a shortage of suitable lots.

USA Today reported this week that a Southern California firm, John Burns Real Estate Consulting, analyzed 27 leading markets and found that the average price of a “finished lot” suitable for building was up 40 percent in the second quarter compared with a year ago.

To read the full report, Click Here.


Cigarette Smoke Snuffs Out Higher Home Prices

September 7th, 2013   by lisasheppard

Lit cigarette

An April survey of real estate agents in Ontario, Canada, found that long-term cigarette smoking in a home may reduce its resale value by 20 percent, on average. And smokers’ homes are much more difficult to sell.

In the survey, commissioned by drug manufacturer Pfizer Canada, 44 percent of the agents surveyed said smoking will reduce a home’s value by some measure. Of these, one-third said the reduced value may range from 10 to 19 percent; another one-third said it could lower the value by 20 to 29 percent.

To read more, Click Here.