Spring Cleaning in San Diego: Boost Your Curb Appeal

Did you know that you only have seven seconds to make a good first impression when meeting someone new? This is not only true for people, but also for a variety of things in life – like our homes. If you want your house to impress new visitors, it’s essential that you pay close attention to its curb appeal.

‘Curb appeal’ is the attractiveness of the exterior of a home, and it is especially important when trying to lure in prospective buyers. If you’re looking to boost your home’s curb appeal, there are many simple and inexpensive changes you can make. From fresh paint to colorful gardens, all it takes is a little TLC to make your home stand out above the crowd.

Southern California is the perfect climate for low-maintenance exterior home improvements. Keep reading for tips on how to increase the curb appeal of your home in San Diego.

5 Ways to Boost Your Home’s Curb Appeal

1. Power Wash

Nothing drags down the outside of a house more than layers of dirt and dust. Even if your home appears clean from a distance, you will be surprised at how much brighter it will be after a good power washing.

When power washing, make sure to thoroughly clean all of your home’s siding, windows, gutters, and roof. Make sure you don’t skip over any patios, porches, or walkways. Keeping these areas free of debris will show that the house has been properly maintained.

Power washers are available for rent at major home improvement stores like Home Depot and Lowes. However, if you plan to power wash your house a couple of times a year, you may be better off buying one rather than renting.

2. Add Paint

A little paint goes a long way when it comes to curb appeal. If power washing revealed peeling paint on your siding, window frames, or doors, scrape away the old paint and give your home a fresh coat of the same color to give it new life.

If the color of your home is turning off buyers, you might want to consider changing up the color scheme. To choose the perfect palette, go for a drive and look for houses you admire. Use these as inspiration for your new paint color.

Another great way to use paint to liven up the exterior of your house is to introduce an accent color. Do this by using a different color on the shutters, window frames, and/or doors. A bright and cheery hue (like Pantone’s 2019 color of the year) will always welcome visitors and prospective buyers.

3. Make Repairs

If you think buyers won’t notice a shabby roof or broken porch light, think again. Before listing your house for sale, it’s essential that you make any necessary repairs to the exterior of your home.

When evaluating your home’s curb appeal, be sure to pay close attention to little details like the condition of the eaves boards, siding that needs to be replaced, the condition of the front porch columns, the state of the window screens, etc.

While many of these repairs may seem simple, they still have the potential to affect the curb appeal of your home. Remember: You want buyers to see all of your home’s positive attributes, not the work that still needs to be done.

4. Spruce Up the Gardens

With warm weather year round, homes in San Diego have the potential for beautiful gardens in all seasons. Choose from succulents, cacti, flowers, and other arid plants to create a landscape of color, even in the winter.

Check out these San Diego plants that bloom in the winter:

  • Sundrops
  • South African daisy
  • Aloe
  • Cyclamen
  • Poinsettia
  • Pansies
  • Snapdragons
  • Euphorbia ‘Diamond Frost’

In addition to introducing blooming flowers to your landscape, don’t forget to keep your garden beds and lawn tidy. Add mulch in the spring and make sure the lawn is regularly trimmed.

If you prefer to have a more low-maintenance yard, consider investing in a Waterwise Landscape Design. This type of landscaping requires very little watering and infrequent maintenance, saving you both time and money on your water bill.

5. Add Special Touches

When improving your home’s curb appeal, don’t overlook the little details. Here are a few simple, special things you can do that will transform the appearance of your home:

  • Hang a wreath on the front door
  • Introduce a rocking chair or swing to the porch
  • Update your mailbox
  • Swap out your house numbers for something new and modern
  • Place planters with flowers or desert grass on either side of the front door
  • Update the exterior light figures
  • Hang string lights over the patio

When it comes to boosting curb appeal, it’s possible to get a lot of bang for your buck. By investing a little time and money into your home’s exterior, you will be able to command higher offers and sell your home in record time. We know that moving in California can be stressful, so contact our experts for all of your California real estate needs!

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Where Does the Money Come From for Mortgage Loans?

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In the olden days, when someone wanted a home loan they walked downtown to the neighborhood bank or savings & loan. If the bank had extra funds lying around and considered you a good credit risk, they would lend you the money from their own funds.

It doesn’t generally work like that anymore. Most of the money for home loans comes from three major institutions:

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  • Fannie Mae (FNMA – Federal National Mortgage Association)
  • Freddie Mac (FHLMC – Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation)
  • Ginnie Mae (GNMA – Government National Mortgage Association)

This is how it works:

You talk to practically any lender and apply for a loan. They do all the processing and verifications and finally, you own the house with a home loan and regular mortgage payments. You might be making payments to the company who originated your loan, or your loan might have been transferred to another institution. The institution where you mail your payments is called the servicer, but most likely they do not own your loan. They are simply servicing your loan for the institution that does own it.

What happens behind the scenes is that your loan got packaged into a pool with a lot of other loans and sold off to one of the three institutions listed above. The servicer of your loan gets a monthly fee from the investor for servicing your loan. This fee is usually only 3/8ths of a percent or so, but the amount adds up. There are companies that service over a billion dollars of home loans and it is a tidy income.

At the same time, whichever institution packaged your loan into the pool for Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, or Ginnie Mae, has received additional funds with which to make more loans to other borrowers. This is the cycle that allows institutions to lend you money.

What Freddie Mac, Ginnie Mae, and Fannie Mae may do after they purchase the pools is break them down into smaller increments of $1,000 or so, called mortgage-backed securities. They sell these mortgage-backed securities to individuals or institutions on Wall Street. If you have a 401K or mutual fund, you may even own some. Perhaps you have heard of Ginnie Mae bonds? Those are securities backed by the mortgages on FHA and VA loans.

These bonds are not ownership in your loan specifically, but a piece of ownership in the entire pool of loans, of which your loan is only one among many. By selling the bonds, Ginnie Mae, Freddie Mac, and Fannie Mae obtain new funds to buy new pools so lenders can get more money to lend to new borrowers.

And that is how the cycle works.

So when you make your payment, the servicer gets to keep their tiny part and the majority is passed on to the investor. Then the investor passes on the majority of it to the individual or institutional investor in the mortgage backed securities.

From time to time your loan may be transferred from the company where you have been making your payment to another company. They aren’t selling your loan again, just the right to service your loan.

There are exceptions.

Loans above $333,700 do not conform to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac guidelines, which is why they are called non-conforming loans, or “jumbo” loans. These loans are packaged into different pools and sold to different investors, not Freddie Mac or Fannie Mae. Then  Image result for mortgage bankingthey are securitized and for the most part, sold as mortgage backed securities as well.

This buying and selling of mortgages and mortgage-backed securities is called mortgage banking, and it is the backbone of the mortgage business.

Where to See July 4th Fireworks in San Diego

4th of July in San Diego

When it comes to Independence Day, San Diego goes big. So big, in fact, that the city is home to one of the largest firework displays on the West Coast (if not the largest). It’s a time-honored tradition that never fails to deliver a good time. So where can you go to catch the show?

Luckily, T+L has you covered. From a rooftop speakeasy in the Historic Gaslamp Quarter to a cruise around San Diego Bay to the terrace of one of the city’s most celebrated hotels, read on for the best tricks, tips, and spots to make the most of your holiday this year.

Downtown

There are only three words to describe July Fourth in downtown San Diego: Big Bay Boom. Starting at 9 p.m. and launched from barges located around the bay, not only is this the largest fireworks show in town, but the display is so big and so loud, it can be seen and heard from pretty much any part of downtown.

If you want to be in the thick of the action, your best bet is to heed Horace Greeley’s advice and “head west.” You can’t go wrong in Pacific Beach, Mission Beach, Harbor Island, and Shelter Island—all great locations to see the fireworks. Get there early and post up at the beach with all your essentials. These areas tend to fill up fast and it will be more rewarding if you come prepared with beach blankets and beverages in tow.

As in years past, a free shuttle service will be available to and from Harbor Island and Shelter Island. Mission Bay is a perennially popular party spot, made all the more fun if you have access to a boat.

Speaking of boats, harbor cruises are a really fun and exciting way to spend the holiday. Check out Hornblower Cruise Line’s special 4th of July Fireworks Dinner Cruise. Included with the price of admission is a dinner buffet and some killer views of beautiful downtown San Diego.

If you’re hoping to stick around the city, The Nolen’s rooftop bar and lounge in the heart of the historic Gaslamp Quarter is your best bet. Likewise, the views from Mister A’s rooftop will go un-paralleled, as will the experience of dining at one of the city’s most distinguished locales.

For those looking to mix in a bit of history on this already historic occasion, Old Town will be hosting a free, old-fashioned Fourth of July celebration where guests can relive the excitement of an 1800s Independence Day party. The all-day event starts at 10 a.m. and includes activities and games for all ages. Guests are encouraged to participate in the parade around the plaza reminiscent of the July 4 parades of early San Diego with music, animals, banners, and people in historical costumes.

4th of July in San Diego

La Jolla Shores

Working your way up the coast, La Valencia Hotel—also known as La Jolla’s Pink Lady—will come alive with music and entertainment for this year’s Fourth. Perched above the cliffs of La Jolla Cove, this timeless hotel offers extraordinary views of the Pacific Ocean and overlooking Ellen Browning Scripps Park guests and diners can enjoy drinks on the terrace of the hotel which affords both the views and a sense of respite from the crowds below.

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Del Mar

If you’re looking to celebrate in style, guests of the Fairmont Grand Del Mar will be able to partake in their own private fireworks show. As in previous years, the party will take place on the resort’s Aria Lawn and feature a sunset barbecue buffet including all-American favorites, live music, and some of the best fireworks in town. Non-resort guests can enjoy a Fourth of July brunch from 11 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., or dinner from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. at Amaya.

For more information about where or how you can celebrate this fourth of July, check out SanDiego.org.

CPP Tip of the Month

CPP Tip of the Month: Easy Countertop Updates

One of our clients recently tipped us off to an easy and relatively inexpensive way to update your countertops. Don’t want to spend the money to do a complete replacement? Need to touch up a few scraped and scratches? Countertop paint (like those from Rustoleum) offer a great way to update the look of your space without investing a lot of time and money.

A few companies offering the product:

Rustoleum

Giani Granite

Diach Coatings

Note: This does not constitute an official endorsement and Coastal Premier Properties possesses no knowledge of the quality of the product.

CPP Tip of the Month

CPP Tip of the Month

Got a stubborn drain? Don’t want to shell out for expensive solutions like Drano? Drop 3 Alka-Seltzer tabs down the sink, followed by a cup of white vinegar. Stopper. Wait fifteen minutes and follow with a pot of boiling water. This is also a great solution for sink odors. Do not use this method after treatment with a commercial drain opener.

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CPP Tip of the Month: September

Contemplating a change of scenery for the fall? If you’re looking to change up the color of your walls, keep these few things in mind:

-Light colors make a room seem larger, while dark colors can make it seem smaller. Reserve dark colors for adding interest or to bring out small details.

-Paint door frames and moldings the same color as the wall to make them blend in. Paint them a contrasting color to make them stand out.

-If you have an open floor-plan or rooms that connect, create unity by keeping the same color elements from room to room. For example, two rooms can be connected by the same accent color painted on the door frames.

-Don’t neglect the floor! The color and texture of your floors, be they stone, carpet, wood, or tile, can affect the overall feel of the room when it comes to color.

-Paint test squares on your wall, in the areas with the most light and least light, to get an idea of how the color will work with the natural light in your home. Live with it for a few days before settling down to do the big painting job.

CPP Tip of the Month

CPP Tip of the Month

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Whether you’re a renter or a homeowner, it’s inevitable that your walls will become dotted with small holes and marks. Use a butter knife to smooth non-gel toothpaste into the holes. To smooth the surface, sand it. Non-gel toothpaste even works on crayon marks. Simply scrub it onto the offending marks and wipe until it’s gone.