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The Lundquist Appraisal Blog is taking an exciting step. We have officially moved all content to a new location with a new design too. All articles will now be published at www.SacramentoAppraisalBlog.com.  

wemovedOur new website is really an opportunity to create a domain that will compliment our main appraisal website as well as offer an easy-to-remember domain name. All original content developed here has already been transferred to the new site so that articles will be searchable in one place still. You can expect quality writing, in-depth market research, conversations about real estate and life, podcasts, and other local stuff we like to talk about.

Thank you to so many for following along and making this past year a successful beginning. Please join us on the new site and tell your friends. You can subscribe by RSS or get posts delivered to you by email.

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See you at the new site!!!

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I think about houses and neighborhoods quite a bit because of my chosen career as a real estate appraiser. But beyond my job considering market value, I find myself delving into a different type of worth: neighborhood value. 

052108ins 182Isolation in Society: Something has happened in our society. There used to be a day and time where kids played outside more often, where families knew and relied upon households next door, and where it was normal to feel a sense of connection amongst neighbors. In thinking back to when you were a kid, did life in your neighborhood seem a bit more interactive and relational than your experience today? Did people trust each other more readily? Did passersby wave? Did you play outside without worrying about Megan’s Law registrants?

What happened?

I’m no big-wig expert by any means, but I wrote a group of short essays in a series entitled “Community Building 101” (pdf file), and I’d like to share them here. My take is that life is not just about the value of our homes, but the quality and value of the relationships we have - even in our neighborhoods. This series made an appearance in The Rancho Cordova Post and Sacramento Press.

Community Building Resources:

Let me know if you have any insight, ideas or other resources to share. Feel free to comment below.

www.lundquistcompany.com/blog What Happened to our Neighborhoods?

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Congratulations to Exit Realty West for their fantastic Christmas CanTree auction last night. The event was managed well (with humor) and there were so many generous Realtors, agents, mortgage consultants, and others that handed over cash for gift baskets, 49ers tickets, wine bottles, Kings tickets, cookies, and other random stuff. I know Jeff Dominguez and Francisco Cuellar of Exit Realty West put in some hard work to pull this off. Great work guys!! Thank you for advocating for families in need and providing a hub to bring others together to participate. 

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The photos are a bit blurry. My mobile phone takes really great pictures, but when it comes to shots in a dimly lit room -  not so good.

www.lundquistcompany.com/blog Exit Realty West Hosts Successful CanTree Auction

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During this time of year I often come back to one of my favorite images from the Lundquist family album. If you’re anything like me, life is starting to feel stressful, Thanksgiving plans are in motion, the December schedule is getting too packed already, and you’re wondering if you’ll have any sense of peace during the holiday season. This picture helps me put things into perspective.

christmas cape

Let me introduce you to my grandparents, mother, and the four-year old version of me and my twin brother. This photo was taken during a time when my family had very little money as my mother was a single parent doing her best to work full-time and raise us boys. We lived a modest lifestyle out of necessity, and so when December rolled around, there wasn’t much to cover Christmas gifts. My Mom had a total of ten dollars, and since she was too proud to accept additional funds from family members, she made due with what she had.

When I look at this post gift-unwrapping picture, I see two extremely happy boys and an amazing mother who stretched out ten bucks to provide both of her sons with a superman t-shirt and cape, Mork & Mindy egg, coloring book, and soccer ball.

Maybe it’s just subjective sentimental goo, but this photo gets me thinking about what really matters and even how I can enjoy the coming month ahead. There are some real nuggets of truth here: Family time is so important. Money doesn’t make us happy. Humble circumstances can teach us valuable life lessons. Moms are amazing. Christmas is not about the gifts. Financial hardship doesn’t have to steal our joy. Life is good. There is much to celebrate and be grateful for. We need to savor the time we have with our kids.

How do you plan to find joy in this next month?

www.lundquistcompany.com/blog How $10 Made Two Boys Happy on Christmas

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This is a great cause I plan to participate in. I became aware of the Christmas CanTree drive through Jeff Dominguez of Exit Realty West (Jeff is definitely one of the good guys) and the Sacramento Association of Realtors.

exit realty west can tree fundraiser

Per the Sacramento Association of Realtor’s website:

What CanTree Does
The food donated will be distributed to needy families through The Salvation Army’s Holiday Food Basket Program. Over 45,000 local families are expected to benefit from the food contributed through CanTree, according to The Salvation Army. The Army currently serves 36,000 meals per month in the Greater Sacramento Area. CanTree is a critical factor in successfully feeding thousands of people at Christmas time.

Why SAR Sponsors CanTree
Every REALTOR® knows that a healthy community is crucial to our success. All the money we raise for CanTree goes directly to the Salvation Army – none of it goes for administration or any other costs. Even though the real estate market has seen better days, enthusiasm is still very high and REALTORS® are as generous as ever.

Let me know if you have any questions and I’ll do my best to answer them. You are welcome to contact Exit Realty West at 916-441-4418 for more information on their potluck / auction.

www.lundquistcompany.com/blog Christmas CanTree Project 2009: Event by Exit Realty West in Sacramento

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I wanted everyone to know that I’ll be putting up some posts on HousingStorm.com. This is a great opportunity and I plan to have some fun with it.  You can check out my posts HERE.

HousingStorm.com was designed to give a unified platform and voice to those of us who believe that you, our clients deserve real un-spun facts and the honest real estate truth. It’s your money. It’s your house. You deserve to work with someone who actually understands the complexities and nuances of this market.

All of our writers have been fully-vetted and proven their desire to keep their clients informed. They have comprehensive knowledge of their towns and neighborhoods. They see the bigger economic picture and grasp the impact that global events will have on their local real estate market. They believe that a successful business is built on being completely honest with you, their clients.

www.lundquistcompany.com/blog My Posts on Housing Storm

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680-bike-200 by 200This post is not related to real estate appraisal per se, but it has everything to do with “value”. Project 680 is something I wholeheartedly support, help organize and lead, and sponsor as a business.

I firmly believe we can find creative solutions to some of the problems we face in our society, especially as it pertains to local children in need.

Project 680 is a grassroots community effort to find relevant and practical ways to support local students in need. We are working closely with the Folsom Cordova School District Liaison for Homeless Services to support her yearly shoe drive for needy students, and our goal is to raise $1,500 to cover the cost of 100 pairs of brand new shoes. Project 680 is a volunteer team effort and we partner with local residents, individuals, households, organizations, churches, and businesses, to advocate for local kids.

680-bike-200-2There are many ways to get involved in the shoe drive as mentioned on the Project 680 website, but one specific and creative way that I wanted to make note of is to be a part of the P680 Bike Ride. On Saturday, 11/07/09, Project 680 is hosting a community bike ride as a creative and fun way to raise money for new shoes for needy students. Riders are invited to donate $5.00 each or $10.00 per household, or even put together a “Riding for Shoes” team.

Please have a look at the Project 680 website at www.project680.org and specifically under “Shoes” and “Bike” for information on the Shoe Drive and the Community Bike Ride. This is a short ride and very family-friendly. Even if you haven’t been on a bike for a few decades, you can do this one!!!

Thank you everyone for taking a moment to listen and for your support. Let me know if you have any questions!!!

http://www.lundquistcompany.com/blog Project 680 Shoe Drive & Bike Ride

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Superfun vs. Superfund

There is a big difference between “Superfun” and “Superfund”. One is all about having a great time and the other deals with hazardous waste sites in the United States. I know which one I’d rather have. 

If you are not familiar with the Superfund website, it’s worth checking out. Their website states:  

imagesSuperfund is the name given to the environmental program established to address abandoned hazardous waste sites. It is also the name of the fund established by the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act of 1980, as amended (CERCLA statute, CERCLA overview). This law was enacted in the wake of the discovery of toxic waste dumps such as Love Canal and Times Beach in the 1970s. It allows the EPA to clean up such sites and to compel responsible parties to perform cleanups or reimburse the government for EPA-lead cleanups.

Our territory in California is located in Region 9 and at www.epa.gov/superfund you can see all Superfund Sites in Region 9 as well as Cleanup Sites in California. For locals, you might recognize names like Mather Air Force Base, Sacramento Army Depot, Jibboom Junkyard, Travis Air Force Base, Riverbank Army Ammunition Plant, or AeroJet.

http://www.lundquistcompany.com/blog Superfun vs. Superfund

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Here is a video from Freddie Mac about which documents to gather before discussing a loan modification with your lender. What do you think? If you cannot see the video below if you subscribe by RSS feed, click HERE.

http://www.lundquistcompany.com/blog  Tips from Freddie Mac on Which Documents You Need to Gather Before Calling Your Lender to Discuss Loan Modification

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052108ins-182aI spend quite a bit of time each week thinking about houses and neighborhoods because of my chosen career as a real estate appraiser. But more than my job, I find myself often imagining how neighborhoods can improve and become more connected like they used to be. 

Below is an article I wrote in a series entitled “Community Building 101” (pdf file). “The Art of Hospitality” is the last article in this mini-essay series and I wanted to share it here on my real estate appraisal blog because life is not just about the value of our houses, but the quality and value of the relationships we have, even in our neighborhoods. Eating with neighbors is one of the the most profound but simple ways we can build a better community.

The Art of Hospitality by Ryan Lundquist

What is the best dining experience you’ve ever had? A few years ago I ate at a joint in San Francisco called Asia De Cuba. This fusion restaurant had spectacular ambiance and the feel of a hip club with its dim lights, pulsating beats, trendy décor, and exotic menu. Our group enjoyed four hours of eating and sitting together and we were never rushed to leave. The bill was substantial, but the unique experience was worth the high cost.

 

When guests leave my house after dinner, I want them to feel something similar. It would be great if they complimented the lavish food, stylish decorating, and festive atmosphere. That would be nice. I have a feeling though they’d more realistically say they’d eaten good non-gourmet food and felt mostly comfortable even though there were energized toddlers running around. Dining at the Lundquist home is not anything like an upscale restaurant, but that’s a good thing because practicing hospitality does not necessitate a gourmet experience.

 

There is something significant about welcoming others into our homes. When we ask people over we are giving them much more than a meal – we are inviting them into our lives. In an age of birthday card emails, drive-thru dinners, and brief cell phone interactions, it’s refreshing to sit down together for an unrushed hour or two and really get to know others. Sometimes though we think that being hospitable means we have to prepare the most scintillating dishes and spend all day cleaning the house. But it’s okay if the walls are not acid-washed, if toys are visible, and if there’s a stack of bills on the countertop. True hospitality is not about offering our guests perfection, but relationship. Sure, it’s nice to clean the house and spice up dinner a bit, but let’s remember that our guests are not customers to please but rather participants in a family meal. One of the most respectful things we can do is invite people into the life we really live. Besides, if we put so much effort into a meal we might exhaust ourselves and also cause our guests to feel intimidated about inviting us to their house.

 

Life is busy, so where do you find the time to eat a meal with others? Thankfully dinner is something that most of us do every night, so it’s just a matter of coordinating our schedules. If my household is eating dinner anyway and yours is too, it doesn’t seem all that overwhelming to combine efforts to dine together – especially on a weekend night. It always helps too to ask guests to bring a side dish or assist with preparation somehow.

 

The practice of hospitality is about sharing meals, but is more broadly about sharing our lives with people. This might seem like an odd topic to end a community building series, but by taking the initiative to invite other residents into our daily routines we can profoundly impact our neighborhoods. When we get intentional about helping our tracts become more connected like they used to be, we will begin to taste something wonderful – a sense of community.

 

http://www.lundquistcompany.com/blog  The Art of Hospitality: Having Neighbors Over for Dinner???

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072308ins006aOne of the key factors for our market to improve and get back to “normal” is for the oversupply of foreclosure properties to be absorbed. Basically, it’s a messy real estate market out there in the Sacramento Region, and the mess has to be dealt with to move on.

Sacramento MLS allows us to analyze past sales as well as current listings to see how many properties sold as bank-owned or short sales and so on. What about future listings though? How many foreclosures will be coming to the market? Two interesting data sources for this type of information are Realquest and Realist.

RealQuest provides a free service online for anyone to view properties which are in “Pre-foreclosure” (coming soon to the market unless something happens to stop them – loan modification, catch up on payments, legislation, act of God, etc…), “Auction” (you’ve seen the commercials for the auction properties where “there are 2000 properties to sell off and they MUST sell this weekend”), and “Bank-Owned” (yes, the bank has title already).

This is what RealQuest looks like when doing a property search:

folsom-realquest1

Realist is also a service of First American Core Logic and is commonly known as “Tax Records” for Sacramento Metrolist Subscribers (a paid service). Realist has a new “foreclosure activity” search feature that covers the same categories that RealQuest does. But when looking up data in both RealQuest and Realist, there is definitely a difference. Sometimes the data is very similar, but other times the figures are way off. This may be due to the way RealQuest and Realist categorize their information as well as the difference between a free service (RealQuest) and a paid service (Realist). Ultimately there could be a number of factors why the data is so different, but it’s not the purpose of this post to go into depth about that. The real thrust here is to show that there is a new wave of foreclosure properties coming and we ought to be prepared for that. Let’s continue to be full of hope as well as avoid a lifestyle of worrying, but let’s keep an eye on what is going on.

Market Data from RealQuest & Realist:

City of Folsom in Sacramento County

  • Preforeclosure Properties: 296 (RealQuest) 186 (Realist)
  • Auction Properties: 46 (RealQuest) 79 (Realist)
  • Bank-Owned Properties: 158 (RealQuest) 262 (Realist)

City of Citrus Heights in Sacramento County

  • Preforeclosure Properties: 309 (RealQuest) 435 (Realist)
  • Auction Properties: 57 (RealQuest) 161 (Realist)
  • Bank-Owned Properties: 134 (RealQuest) 330 (Realist)

City of Orangevale in Sacramento County

  • Preforeclosure Properties: 136 (RealQuest) 145 (Realist)
  • Auction Properties: 26 (RealQuest) 45 (Realist)
  • Bank-Owned Properties: 126 (RealQuest) 128 (Realist)

City of Rancho Cordova in Sacramento County

  • Preforeclosure Properties: 245 (RealQuest) 256 (Realist)
  • Auction Properties: 32 (RealQuest) 107 (Realist)
  • Bank-Owned Properties: 223 (RealQuest) 298 (Realist)

City of Fairfield in Solano County

  • Preforeclosure Properties: 309 (RealQuest) 710 (Realist)
  • Auction Properties: 51 (RealQuest) 283 (Realist)
  • Bank-Owned Properties: 140 (RealQuest) 745 (Realist)

City of West Sacramento in Yolo County

  • Preforeclosure Properties: 232 (RealQuest) 225 (Realist)
  • Auction Properties: 109 (RealQuest) 114 (Realist)
  • Bank-Owned Properties: 159 (RealQuest) 207 (Realist)

NOTE: The discrepancy in the data above would be very important to research and explain if the data was actually used in an appraisal report or to support value conclusions in any way. It is very important to use the best available data in an appraisal report because solid value must be based upon reliable information.

The data above was really provided as an FYI for those who may be interested. Since RealQuest provides a free service too, go spend a few minutes on their website, see what you can find, and draw your own conclusions about reliability.

If you have any questions or potential appraisal needs, please contact me at 916-595-3735 and www.lundquistcompany.com

http://www.lundquistcompany.com/blog

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logoThe Sacramento Redevelopment and Housing Agency (SHRA) has a great website containing foreclosure information and resources. In their own words:

“SHRA offers a list of resources with links to agencies that can provide counseling and additional helpful information if you are facing default or foreclosure on your mortgage loan.  

 

If you are facing the loss of your home, attend a community meeting or workshop for education and information about avoiding foreclosure, or call a HUD-certified home ownership or credit counseling agency on our resource list for help. You may also be able to get foreclosure related legal assistance at no cost. If you are having difficulty with your mortgage payments, call your loan servicer’s hotline (pdf) for assistance.”

 

I hope this helps. Please pass it on to anyone you might know who could use a resource like this.

 

http://www.lundquistcompany.com/blog Help for Avoiding Foreclosure in the Sacramento Area

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