Three Common House-Hunting Mistakes to Avoid

Looking for the perfect home is an exciting experience, but it can also become overwhelming and exhausting if you don’t know what you’re doing. If this is your first time searching for a home, you could make huge mistakes that could cause a major setback with your goals. How can you take the pressure off your shoulders when you’re house shopping? House-hunting is a significant task that requires you to follow the right steps. Let’s read along to discover three common mistakes that most first-time home buyers make.

House Costs

Will your home cause a drain on your finances? You can make the crucial mistake of choosing a house that is beyond your budget. There is a possibility that you can fall in love with a house that is too expensive. You may think that you can afford the house price but end up paying too much money that you were not expecting. For example, you might not anticipate closing costs, maintenance, repairs, utilities, property taxes, and other hidden costs. You should be aware of all the costs that you’ll have to deal with to decide if you’re making the right decision to become a homeowner.

Not Being Specific

You should have an idea of the type of property that you’re searching for. One simple way of doing this is to make a list of the essential features you need. Some of these may consist of the number of bedrooms and bathrooms, the kitchen layout, the size of the house, heating and cooling systems, and more. A successful house sale requires you to have an understanding of your priorities, which helps you to make a good house-buying decision.

Refusing Professional Help

You might think that you don’t need help from a professional realtor, especially if you’re already familiar with a neighborhood. You might also refuse professional help because you’re in the habit of making important decisions. However, this is a common thinking process that could cause you to make critical house-hunting mistakes.

By working with a realtor, you might get a better price for a home, which is a huge benefit that helps you get the most from your budget. Realtors are also more knowledgeable about the particular home that you’re looking to buy and help you to save time with your house-buying process. A professional realtor knows the real estate market, deals with complicated transactions, and is dedicated to helping you find a great home.

Learn How You Can Find Your Dream Home Today

One of the most major decisions that you can ever make in your life is buying a home. Your property search begins with finding the most reputable realtor that you can trust and minimizing a stressful house-hunting process. A full-time realtor in Santa Clarita is always committed to helping you find a great home for you and your family. With our 25 years in the industry, you’re guaranteed that you’re in safe hands. Reach out to us today to learn how we can help you to obtain a successful house sale.

Santa Clarita Is The Perfect Place To Spend Your Retirement

California has famous, bustling cities full of exciting opportunities, but when you are looking to retire in the Golden State, you may dream of a more straightforward way of life. Fortunately, you can have the best of both worlds in Santa Clarita, California, in retirement. 


Located close to Los Angeles, Santa Clarita is ideally situated in some of the most breathtaking scenery along the Pacific coastline. Not only is Santa Clarita a picture of small-town life, but it is also a thriving city with all the amenities you need while retired. Santa Clarita boasts renowned shopping, entertainment, health care options, and plenty of space to relax and unwind while being a charming place to live. Let’s look at what makes Santa Clarita the perfect place to spend your retirement years. 


Stay Active In The Great Outdoors In Santa Clarita

Santa Clarita offers retirees the perfect setting for staying active and involved in activities of many kinds. The city’s expansive parks provide the space to enjoy the fresh air in the great outdoors. Many area parks have trails for walking or cycling for various exercise capabilities. With so many local trails and paths, you will have plenty of space to roam. 


Join Social Groups With Ease

Often, retirees seek to establish new friends and social activities in their areas of interest. Santa Clarita is a welcoming city with endless options for getting involved in social groups of interest. The area boasts a thriving local arts and crafts scene and hosts many events throughout the year that offer a variety of activities. From active neighborhoods and communities, bustling main street fare, and senior center classes, you’ll find just the right mix of social opportunities to enjoy in Santa Clarita. 


Fun For Families To Visit

Santa Clarita is full of fun activities for families, which makes it an excellent place for grandkids and other children to visit. If you are looking forward to spending quality time in retirement with your family, Santa Clarita offers the best in family entertainment. Six Flags Magic Mountain and the Santa Clarita Aquatics Center draw many families to the area. Santa Clarita also hosts family-oriented festivals that will help you make memories with the ones you love most. 


Find Your Dream Retirement Home In Santa Clarita

Santa Clarita has many different neighborhoods and communities that each offer unique opportunities to enjoy retirement your way. To find your dream retirement home in Santa Clarita, consult an experienced Santa Clarita realtor who can help you make your dream a reality.


Important Steps to Take Before Investing in Santa Clarita Real Estate

Have you been thinking about investing in Santa Clarita real estate? If so, you know how important it is to get your finances in order before searching for properties or scheduling appointments. After all, doing this will help you save quite a few headaches in the long run. 

Making a real estate investment may be one of the biggest investments you ever make, and unless you have money ready for this investment, you’ll need to create a plan to finance the purchase and ensure ongoing cash flow. Before getting in touch with a Santa Clarita real estate agent, there are a few other things you should do. 

Create a Plan for Financing the Investment 

Traditional financing may be the best option for your initial investment if you have a significant down payment, consistent W-2 income, and a strong credit score. That’s because interest rates are usually low, and the terms on these loans are typically attractive. 

It’s important to determine what you can afford based on your expenses and the amount of cash you need to handle upgrades and renovations. Be sure you know where the liquid funds are coming from, increasing the likelihood of getting a good deal. Remember, it’s possible to move much faster when you have cash, which motivates property sellers in Santa Clarita. 

Review Your Credit Report and Keep It Positive 

It’s a good idea to request a copy of your credit report and dispute any errors. You should also explain negative issues or any late payments. Keep your score from falling by avoiding lowering your limits, canceling accounts, or requesting new credit inquiries. 

Seek Mortgage Pre-Approval

Being pre-approved for a mortgage will help you with the real estate investment you want to make. Doing this is going to help lock in an interest rate. If the rates fluctuate while you work with a real estate agent to find the perfect investment property, your rate won’t change. 

Do Your Homework to Remain Competitive

Just because you have been approved for financing doesn’t mean you are ready to begin shopping. Take some time to shop around and get in touch with other lenders to see if they can offer you a lower interest rate. While just a few percentage points may not seem like that big of a deal, it can help you save tens of thousands of dollars during the lifetime of your loan. It can also help improve your monthly cash flow. 

Work with an Experienced and Knowledgeable Real Estate Agent

When you are ready to invest in real estate in Santa Clarita, it’s smart to work with a real estate agent who has experience in the area. This will ensure you find properties that meet your needs and budget. They can also offer more insight into the local properties to ensure you get exactly what you are searching for.

Simple Tips For Boosting Curb Appeal

If you plan on selling your Santa Clarita Valley home, boosting your property’s curb appeal can provide you with a positive return on your investment. How your home is viewed from the street is a critical component for potential buyers who decide to tour your home or not. Often, potential sales are lost from the road as buyers are turned off by a home’s overgrown and run-down appearance. 


While you may not be in the position to re landscape your home in its entirety, there are simple steps you can take that make a big difference in your home’s curb appeal. Let’s take a look at what you can do to ensure your home is inviting to potential buyers from first sight.


Clean Out Overgrown Bedding And Shrubs

If your landscape is overgrown, it will appear that your home is unkempt to potential buyers. More often than not, simply tending to your landscape, flowerbeds, and shrubs will make a significant difference in the appearance of your yard. 


Trim back bushes and trees, weed flowerbeds, remove dead and dying plants, and keep lawns mowed to ensure your home is seen in its best light. Opting for a low maintenance landscape is also an option; consider using plants indigenous to the Santa Clarita Valley region for a beautiful and hassle-free yard. 


Focus On Your Property’s Strengths

When boosting your home’s curb appeal on a budget, focus your efforts on your property’s strengths. Maintaining a neat yard goes a long way to catch the eyes of potential buyers who don’t want to purchase a home that needs a lot of work. Choose areas to highlight that draw potential buyers into your property to enhance your outdoor spaces. 


For instance, if you have unique trees or other natural elements on your property, consider highlighting them plantings to draw the eye to these areas. Or, designate outdoor entertainment areas by placing tables, chairs, and even a fire pit in the space to create an inviting atmosphere. 


Light Up Your Property

Outdoor lighting is essential to your home’s security, safety, and curb appeal. Not only do lights need to be placed by driveways, sidewalks, stairs, and entrances to your home for safety and security reasons, but also to create ambiance once the sun goes down. 


Uplighting trees, architectural elements, and outdoor entertainment areas will create a warm and welcoming feel to your property. Repair and replace any existing exterior lighting fixtures to ensure they work properly, and upgrade older fixtures to motion-sensing devices for a more modern feel. 


Final Thoughts

Your home’s curb appeal is essential to how potential buyers view your property. These strategic and straightforward tips will help your home sell more quickly.

How to Sell Your House Quickly and For a Higher Profit

As a homeowner, you could be in great haste to sell your house for a higher profit. There are so many scenarios that will make you decide to sell your home. You could be nearing retirement and need cash to put into your retirement account, you’re no longer happy with your location, or need a larger house for your growing family.

Regardless of your reasons for wanting to sell, there are critical steps that you can take to ensure the process goes smoothly. Let’s explore the techniques you should apply to make selling your home less daunting.


Organize and Declutter

A cluttered home is unappealing to a prospective buyer and could decrease your chances of selling your home as quickly as possible. One important strategy you should keep in mind is to make your home pristine to buyers whenever they come for a home viewing. 

Start this strategy by organizing and decluttering your home. Keep in storage family pictures, clothing, shoes, electronics, and other items cluttering up your space. You also need to organize your closets in each room. 

Also, remember to clean your home from top to bottom to make your place presentable to a buyer. Be sure to clean all the bathrooms, basement, kitchen, and other rooms in your home.


Perform Repairs

Make a note of the indoor and outdoor issues of your home that you need to renovate. You may have loose tiles in your bathroom and kitchen or leaky faucets that you have to repair. Make sure you perform essential repairs before your home viewing. 


Get a Realtor

Selling your home can be challenging during a pandemic. A natural disaster or even a pandemic like COVID-19 may interfere with your home selling process. The process of listing and selling your house on the market is less overwhelming if you have a realtor to assist you. Using the valuable services of a realtor comes in handy when you want to avoid certain obstacles that may inhibit the home selling process.

A professional realtor knows how to make negotiations and do the paperwork on your behalf. Hiring a realtor is a practical option that you should consider to facilitate the way you sell your home.

Are you sure you’re making the right decision to sell your house? 

Selling your home should not take up too much of your time. You could be in a hurry to list your home on the market and to move on with your life. Fortunately, you have the convenience to rely on the services of a reputable realtor with 25 years of expertise and knowledge in Canyon Country.

Reach out to us today to learn how we can assist you with the exceptional realtor services that you’re looking for.

Follow These Tips To Finding Your Perfect Neighborhood

Many things such as your budget and square footage must be considered when deciding which new home to purchase. However, choosing the right neighborhood may be one of the most critical parts of a successful house hunt. Even if you may have a general idea of neighborhoods you like, it can be challenging to narrow down your decision on where to buy a house. 

Local communities tend to fluctuate in costs and amenities from neighborhood to neighborhood, impacting property and way of life. While you can change certain aspects of a house to fit your needs, its location is permanent. To help you find the perfect neighborhood to buy your next home, let’s take a look at some tips from the area’s real estate pros. 


Consider The Market And Your Budget 

The housing market significantly impacts your budget for purchasing a home plan to buy a house. To determine whether or not a neighborhood works within your budget, focus on the Market Action Index and the Median List Price. 

A buyer’s market is reflected in a Market Action Index of less than 30, while a more competitive market can be shown in an index above 30. By understanding the market when you plan to buy a house, you can determine what neighborhoods fit your budget. For example, in a buyer’s market, you may be able to consider homes in areas that otherwise may be out of your price range. 


Keep An Eye Out For Red Flags

When you buy a house, you are investing in the neighborhood in which it is located. One way to know if a community is right for you is to spend some time in its various areas and assess what you see. As you drive or walk around these areas, look for red flags such as anything that may negatively affect the property value of the home you wish to purchase. 

Red flags in neighborhoods can be their proximity to harmful industry to dilapidated neighboring residences. Also, research the area’s number of foreclosures and property values over the last few years; these factors may also be red flags that indicate your investment in the property may not be wise. 


Lifestyle And Quality Of Living

All neighborhoods boast unique qualities that impact those living within them. Some areas are laid back and removed from the hustle, while others may be pedestrian-friendly and full of amenities. Consider neighborhoods that fit your lifestyle and add to your quality of living. 

To determine what qualities you need most in a neighborhood, create a neighborhood wish list that lists your priorities. Your realtor will help you better choose communities to consider by understanding what is most important in a neighborhood to you. 


Three Types of Buyers

With years of experience in the Santa Clarita Valley and surrounding areas, we at Marcel Cuschieri Group have a very detailed knowledge of the local real estate market. But along the way, you also get some insight into the philosophy of real estate buying and selling, and the logistics of how deals work.

Here we’ll talk about three different kinds of buyers we deal with on a regular basis as we put together the best transactions for both real estate sellers and buyers in Santa Clarita.

Living In

The first category of buyer is simply looking for a cool new crib, or in other words, a primary residence.

Actually, “primary residence” can be a little deceptive. These days, lots of high net worth individuals have more than one home scattered around different areas of the country. So while someone may say that they’re looking for a home in California, they might mean a primary residence, or they might mean a second or third home, or a vacation home or a fair weather home. We don’t delve too deeply into this, because it’s their business. What we do is show them the best local real estate in a curated way with the professionalism that you’d expect when you’re shopping a particular real estate market.


This category of buyer tends to be a lot less serious about what they’re doing.

You can often see it from the very beginning. As you ask and answer questions, you can just tell that they don’t have a very concrete sense of what they’re doing. Some of these individuals will be “amazed” by every property, but more into the idea of a piece of real estate than an actual sale.

We’re not judging this category of buyers – in fact, these looky-loos can eventually end up making a deal. This isn’t the kind of thing where you’re forced to buy something after a given amount of time. It’s a different market where people have to know where their hearts are at as they shop, and that can be a long-term process.


This third class of buyer is all business. Again, you can tell most times, as soon as you show them a couple properties.

Investors are less interested in glamour, and much more attuned to the core value of a property – the bones of a building and the working systems instead of the bells and whistles and amenities. Some of these investors are looking to fix and flip – others are operating rentals. Whatever they’re doing, you know they can count on us for solid real estate help and advice and the Santa Clarita Valley area.

Check out our website for more.




Tips for Buying When Housing Inventory Is Low

If you are a savvy buyer, you take all the necessary steps to prepare for buying a home. Now that you are prepared, it’s time to begin the house hunt. 

This is supposed to be the fun part, right?

Do you know what you will do if you discover there aren’t many options? If you find few or no options for sale within your price range, it’s easy to get frustrated. While that’s true, don’t give up just yet. Use some of the tips here to help you find your perfect home, even with a low housing inventory. 

Offer a Higher Price

This is the basic principle of supply and demand. Prices go up when inventory is low, and demand is high. Consider offering your final and best offer upfront. While offering a higher price when buying a home can be tricky, it may be worth it in this situation. Just make sure you can afford what you offer, which is going to increase the mortgage payment. 

You also need to be able to make up the difference in cash if the house happens to appraise under what you offer. Usually, lenders will not approve mortgages higher than the appraised value. 

Act Fast but Stay Patient 

Getting the home you want in a competitive market usually involves a lot of “hurry up and wait.” Make sure you are ready, at any point, to make an offer on something newly listed. While you may need to be ready to pounce on a house when it first comes available, sometimes the deal just isn’t right for you. You may also find that your offer is not accepted. Stay patient, and the right home will come along. 

Stay Flexible on Closing Dates

Besides acting quick with an offer, you may have to close quickly, too. For example, the seller may need to close quickly because of a divorce or job relocation. Your offer may also have more weight if you can get to the closing faster. 

You may wonder how to speed this entire process up. One way to do this is by shortening your inspection time frame. Ten days is plenty for a home and termite inspection if you have an inspector ready to go. 

Also, if you are preapproved, you can close as quickly as a non-cash buyer. That’s because the mortgage lender will have everything ready to go to help you get your mortgage and move things along. 

Making the Most of Low Housing Inventory

If you are in an area where housing inventory is low, it’s a good idea to make sure you are ready to act if an opportunity arises. While it can be frustrating at times, you can easily get the home you want for an affordable price with the right real estate agent. 

Being informed is half the battle, so make sure that you stay updated on what is going on in the local market to ensure you can act when needed to purchase a house.

Uniquely Valued Properties In Santa Clarita, Ca

In some real estate markets, it’s really important to choose the right guide. The agents who assist you in picking out your dream home matter, because the markets themselves are more complex and sophisticated in these high-end areas.

Santa Clarita, California is one of those neighborhoods. This is not a place where builders rush in and plunk down dozens of identical cookie-cutter homes, either duplexes or standalone single-family dwellings. There are many creatively unique properties in these neighborhoods and navigating this market, buyers benefit from specialized and skilled agent assistance. Here, getting the right property is especially important, for a number of reasons. 

Creating CMAs

One of the jobs of an agent is to create a comparable market analysis for a property that’s under consideration. The CMA helps to compare that property to other properties to make sure that pricing is set correctly.

That’s more difficult, though, when the property is really uniquely valued. It becomes more challenging to really pin down the CMA value, partly because there is less to immediately compare it to, and partly because of the subjective value of real estate.

Knowing You’re Home

A good agent will expose the buyer to a range of properties in the local area, so that the buyer can start to get a feel for what they’re seeing, and what they’re looking for.

You may have heard the expression “one person’s junk is another person’s treasure” and that idea is somewhat applicable in real estate, too, although it’s understandably quite different in some ways. The bottom line is that not everyone agrees on property values and on comparisons. Different people are looking for different things. What you find and what you buy depends on what you wanted in the first place. As a starting point, people often evaluate numbers of bedrooms and bathrooms, but then, what about a pool and hot tub? What would you personally value that at? And what about a nice even grade for the land around a home? Those are just some basic examples. 

Top-Class Agents

Marcel Cuschieri Group represents one of the top real estate companies operating in Santa Clarita, California. We know this local market very well, and have a lot of experience with local properties. Let us guide you through the neighborhoods around Sant Clarita, thoroughly, and with attention to detail, because we are dedicated to helping you find that perfect property. 



Signs You Are Ready to Buy a Property in Our Housing Inventory

In the past year, over 439,000 homes were sold in the state of California. Approximately half of the citizens in California rent the living space they reside in. If you have been renting a home or apartment for years, you know how restricting this living arrangement can be. The average consumer uses renting an apartment or home as a temporary solution. 

First time homebuyers are generally unsure about what this process involves. While buying a home can be stressful and time-consuming, you can make this process easier with some professional help. By working with the Marcel Cuschieri Group, you can find and purchase the home of your dreams. Here are signs you might notice when it is time to buy a home of your own.  

Your Financial Situation is Stable

When applying for a mortgage loan, you will have to quickly familiarize yourself with terms like debt-to-income ratio and closing costs. One of the first things you need to do before going out in search of a home to purchase is to get pre-approved for a mortgage. A lender will check your credit score to see if you are a good candidate for a loan. If you have recently paid off tons of debt and boosted your credit score, then you are probably going to have no problem getting approved for a mortgage loan. 

Mortgage lenders will also want to know how long you have been at your current job. This information tells the lender how stable your financial situation is. The longer you have been at your current job, the better your chances will be of getting the loan approval you desire. 

You Know Where You Want To Settle

With all of the great cities to live in the state of California, choosing the right area to settle in can be difficult. If you have done your homework and are confident in the area you want to settle in, then it is time to contact a member of our team. 

If you feel like Burbank is a good area for you and your family, you should check out this affordable three-bedroom, three-bathroom property in our housing inventory. This tri-level townhouse is over 1700 square feet. It is also located mere miles away from some of the best shopping, dining and park venues in all of Burbank. 

A Good Down Payment Comes in Handy

Another important factor you need to consider when trying to assess if you are ready to buy a home is the amount of money you have to use as a down payment. While there are some loan programs that don’t require a down payment, you will usually pay more for these loans in the long run. If you want to buy a luxurious property, like this move-in-ready home located in Saugus, CA, you need a good down payment. With a good down payment, you can actually lower the monthly mortgage payment you have to make. 

Buying the home of your dreams will be much easier with the help of the Marcel Cuschieri Group.