Why I Refer JVM Lending

When a buyer client doesn’t have a lender, I refer to JVM Lending. I can give multiple lenders and a buyer can choose whoever they want. Oftentimes, there are reasons for that choice. For example, if a buyer has only been in the country for less than two years, most lenders can’t finance them and big banks will only allow a certain amount of money, provided they have a chunk of change in their bank.

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However, for most situations, I know JVM will perform if they give an approval. They are so diligent, have amazing systems in place, and are not dependent on just one loan officer responding. They don’t even have loan officer titles – the initial contact is with a Client Advisor.

There is nothing worse than having the loan blow up during the escrow process, especially in this market where buyers are removing all contingencies. I have been one of those agents who has called JVM to save the day, and they have saved it every time.

This recent blog by JVM shows how important it is to know if the lender is focused on refi’s, or primarily does purchase loans. It can make a world of difference. The only motive I have to refer JVM is that I know I will look good to my clients because everything will go so smoothly for them. Most buyers never recognize how smooth the process truly is, but they would appreciate it if they have ever experienced a bad lending experience and would never want to go through it again!

Why The Market Continues To Grow

According to a recent CNN article, the housing market is on a tear, after a slowdown at the beginning of the pandemic. You can read the entire story about one Washington, D.C.-area realtor who listed a property that received 76 all-cash offers in the first 72 hours. Incredible!

The article specifically mentions that home sales bounced back a few months after the pandemic began, but inventory did not. That increased demand, coupled with a lack of supply, has driven home prices up at a crazy pace. According to the National Association of Realtors, the median price of a home has risen 16% from last year.

brown and white concrete house under blue sky during daytime

It seems to be the competition that is driving home prices up so much, and causing this market to take off, however, buyers ultimately determine what they are willing to pay for a home. A long-standing slowdown in homebuilding, plus the pandemic, plus the low interest rates, a desire for more space due to working from home, and a recent exodus out of the cities (since people don’t need to be so close to work) have all contributed to this buying frenzy and a perfect storm for the housing market right now. It isn’t just happening in California, it is across the United States.

If you’re buying, buckle up, because it might be a bumpy ride. Many offers that are being accepted see the buyers removing all of their contingencies. Do I think that is smart? No, but if you have to get into a home and have written and lost 10-plus offers, then a buyer may just do that! If you’re interested in knowing more about the market, the process, or are ready to sell, now might be the best time to do it. In either case, if you want to buy or sell, especially in the East Bay, please give me a call. I’d be happy to help you out!

Everyone Is In For A Huge Treat!

Heather, Aron, and I have been working on getting them into a commercial space at the Rossmoor Village Shopping Center on Tice Valley Blvd. There, they will be opening The Yogurt Spot (targeted to open later this summer). It has been a lifelong dream of Heather’s, who previously worked in events with Prima in downtown Walnut Creek.

A signed lease was just cemented in March. It will be a family-owned business serving the highest quality frozen desserts, from gelato and shaved ice, to many different flavors of frozen yogurt.

Heather and Aron are excited about being part of the community. Their son Aiden plays varsity football for Las Lomas and are very much looking forward to supporting the team along with a few other organizations near and dear to their hearts (such as Underdog and ARF).

The Yogurt Spot will be tucked between Starbucks and BurgerIM.

I can’t wait to see what they do with this small business yogurt stop and taste some of their frozen desserts!

[JVM Lending Blog] 4% Rates by June?

The following blog is from my friend Jay Vorhees at JVM Lending. I’ve contributed some of my own insight at the very bottom. Enjoy!

I am always hesitant to predict rate-increases because they so often do not come about. But, because rates have increased over 1/2% over the last few months and because Barry Habib of MBS Highway predicted that increase with amazing accuracy, I listen when Habib predicts additional increases. And that is what he did in his recent commentary and in an interview with economist, David Rosenberg.

BAD NEWS = INFLATION

How Interest Rates Affect Property Value - The Paratto Team

Credit: The Paratto Team

Both Habib and Rosenberg believe inflation numbers will spike up over the next few months. They focus on Consumer Price Index (CPI) numbers, and point out that the CPI is a moving average of the last twelve months of inflation reports.

Hence, we won’t see inflation spike until April, May and June when the price increases we have seen in recent months start to get factored into the average. CPI numbers were in fact released today, showing a 1.7% increase over the last 12 months.

Habib and Rosenberg believe, however, that CPI numbers will be 1% to 2% higher by June, and that will no doubt spook the bond markets and push rates significantly higher. This is because no bond investor wants to be stuck with a 1.6% yield if inflation rates are at 3%.

GOOD NEWS = INFLATION IS SHORT-LIVED

Habib and Rosenberg also both believe that the inflation we will see will be short-lived. This is because they both think the price increases we are seeing now are primarily a result of supply chains being broken because of COVID.

They remind that the same vaccines and potential herd immunity that are freeing up spending and potentially spurring inflation are also the same vaccines that are also opening up supply chains.

They think the benefits of opened supply chains will outweigh upward pressures on prices brought on by increased spending, and we will see tamer inflation numbers later in the year. Rosenberg also points out that all of the government borrowing taking place now is also deflationary.

NO MELTDOWN; PRAGMATIC; ANYTHING COULD HAPPEN

30-year mortgage rates hit highest since July, refis cool | Fox Business

Credit: Fox Business

What I most enjoy about old salts like Mr. Rosenberg is how pragmatic and relaxed they are. The blogosphere is filled with “doom and gloomers” who insist “the end is near” because of our government’s unprecedented and massive monetary and fiscal intervention.

Rosenberg, however, believes those fears are overstated, pointing out how the Japanese central bank and government have been far more activist over the last twenty years without suffering any major consequences.

Rosenberg is finally quick to point out that there is still no certainty with any prediction in today’s volatile world, and he is particularly adamant about not trying to time predictions.

CONCLUSION

Rates will very likely continue to rise over the next few months b/c of inflation concerns. They could also fall again, but there is no guarantee.

Kristin’s two cents:

I also listened to a Barry Habib Zoom call in early February. One of the other things he noted is as debt increases, interest rates decline. What stood out is the current U.S. debt is around $28 trillion. If you decreased it by $1 million a day, it would take about 2,700 years to fully pay it off. The current administration is currently looking a more debt with their infrastructure bill. The good news is if rates go back down and you are just getting into a loan, you can always refinance down the road.

One last thought: The Wall Street Journal just reported that there are more real estate agents in the United States than houses on the market, but that will be a blog for another day!

Fun facts for St. Patty’s Day!

Happy St. Patrick’s Day, everyone! Under normal circumstances, this would be a happy day full of beer-drinking, block parties, and lots and lots of green outfits. The pandemic has put a bit of a damper on that, but we can still have some virtual fun. Here are 13 fun facts about St. Patty’s Day from MentalFloss!

St. Patrick's Day parade in New York City, 1960
A picture of New York City’s St. Patrick’s Day parade, circa 1960.PETER KEEGAN/GETTY IMAGES
  1. We should be wearing BLUE on St. Patrick’s Day: apparently, the color green only became associated with the holiday after it was linked to the Irish independence movement in the late 18th century.
  2. St. Patrick wasn’t Irish: what?! Although he made his mark by introducing Christianity to Ireland in 432, Patrick was actually born to Roman parents in Scotland or Wales in the late 4th century.
  3. St. Patrick’s Day used to be a dry holiday: pubs were closed in Ireland and Northern Ireland on St. Patrick’s Day until the 1970s. Before then, it was a solemn, strictly religious occasion.
  4. NYC’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade has been happening since 1762: one of the world’s largest parades was actually canceled for the first time in its history due to COVID-19 in 2020.
  5. Chicago runs green for St. Patty’s Day: you’ve all seen it – the Chicago River has been dyed green on St. Patrick’s Day every year since 1962 (but won’t be this year).
  6. Some St. Patrick’s Day parades are…different: from 1999-2007, the Irish village of Dripsey hosted a 26-yard St. Patrick’s Day parade between two pubs. Today, the shortest one is in Hot Springs, Arkansas (98 feet).
  7. There’s a meaning behind the shamrocks: according to Irish legend, St. Patrick used the three-leafed shamrock (not a four-leaf clover, by the way), as a metaphor for the Holy Trinity when he introduced Christianity to Ireland.
  8. Credit where it’s not due?: in Irish lore, St. Patrick gets credit for driving all snakes out of Ireland. However, modern scientists suggest that Ireland has never been home to any snakes because the island was too cold to host reptiles during the Ice Age, and the surrounding seas have kept them away ever since.
  9. Corned beef, hold the corn: corned beef, a popular Irish-American staple on St. Patty’s Day, doesn’t have anything to do with corn. The name is a nod to the large grains of salt historically used to cure meats, which were also called “corns.”
  10. St. Patrick’s Day is a bar owner’s dream: it was estimated in 2017 that 13 MILLION pints of Guinness would be consumed worldwide on St. Patty’s Day. In 2020, it was expected that American beer sales would be up 174% and that Americans celebrating would spend more than $6 billion on the holiday.
  11. His name wasn’t originally Patrick: hold on, what? According to Irish legend, St. Patrick wasn’t originally called “Patrick.” His birth name was Maewyn Succat, but he changed it to Patricius after becoming a priest.
  12. There are no female leprechauns: in traditional Irish folk tales, there are no female leprechauns. Rude!
  13. The lingo makes sense: you can’t attend a St. Patrick’s Day event without hearing a cry of “Erin go Bragh.” What’s the phrase mean? It’s a corruption of the Irish Éirinn go Brách, which means roughly “Ireland Forever.”
Green Chicago River on St. Patrick's Day
Every year, the Chicago River is dyed green for the holiday.TASOS KATOPODIS/GETTY IMAGES

Daylight Saving Time!

It’s that time of year again, folks! Tonight, we will spring forward one hour with Daylight Savings Time, so make sure to set your clocks before you go to bed tonight.

Here are 10 fun facts about Daylight Saving’s Time that you might find interesting:

The clocks will spring forward on March 14, 2021.
Credit: Getty Images/MentalFloss.com
  1. Benjamin Franklin was half-joking when he suggested a similar concept in a satirical essay.
  2. Official credit for the idea goes to a bug collector who was frustrated with the sun setting early in the summer, limiting his amount of time to catch bugs.
  3. Daylight Saving Time was pushed into law by World War I in a German effort to conserve coal.
  4. During the energy crisis of the 1970s, Daylight Saving Time gained renewed popularity in the U.S. as the government looked for ways to reduce energy consumption.
  5. Even though Daylight Saving Time was originally meant to save energy, research suggests it might actually be hurting the cause!
  6. Daylight Saving Time is actually bad for health, due to the one hour of extra sleep we lose by springing ahead.
  7. There is, however, a decrease in crime (robberies, especially) after the start of Daylight Saving Time!
  8. Though Daylight Saving Time has been widely accepted across the country, it is not mandated by federal law so, in Arizona, most of the state does not observe it.
  9. Daylight Saving Time begins at 2 a.m. in the hopes that the most amount of people are asleep when it occurs, therefore not messing with early work schedules and/or late restaurant and bar hours.
  10. Until 2007, Daylight Saving Time in the fall was on October 30th, right before Halloween; in 2007, the candy industry finally successfully lobbied Congress to move it to November!