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Productive Real Estate Tasks To Complete As We "Fall Back"

by The Blake Mashburn Group

 

It's time to "Fall Back"! Do not forget to reset your clocks for the end of Daylight Saving Time on Sunday, November 3rd. While this ultimately means shorter days, this weekend it means an extra hour to get things done! Many people use it as a change to catch up on some sleep or get some additional exercise. While we agree that those things are great, we think it is most productive to use that extra time to tackle your home Buying and Selling tasks! Here are our real estate recommendations on how to spend your additional hour this weekend!

 

1. Create your housing needs and wants checklist. Determine a realistic budget. Use these perimeters to begin your Home Search Online.

 

2. Use a Loan Analysis Tool to find loans that you could qualify for. Begin gathering the necessary documents (ie pay stubs, tax returns, bank statements) that you will need for your mortgage application.

 

3. Reach out to realtors to find the right one for you. Working with an Experienced Realtor will help you throughout the entire buying and selling process. You will save yourself time, money, and stress by teaming up with a professional.

 

4. Find out Your Home's Value. This will allow you to price your current home correctly. Listing your home at the wrong price can put you at a disadvantage starting out so make sure it is a reasonable, accurate price that will help your home sell for top dollar and quickly.

 

5. Think about improvements/upgrades you can make that will increase the value of your home. Start doing some research on costs and what your return on investment could be. Once you think of potential projects, talk to your realtor to see if they make sense for your home.

 

6. Start getting your home in top selling shape by completing some of those simple home maintenance tasks you have been putting off, such as deep cleaning the floors or organizing storage spaces.

 

 

 

Enjoy home buying and home selling success by using your extra time this weekend wisely. Search our Ventura Homes for Sale to get started today. Give our experienced team a call at (805) 856-9350 or visit our website at http://www.blakemashburn.com/ for all your buying and/or selling needs!

Set Aside A Home Maintenance Budget!

by The Blake Mashburn Group

As you sit down to budget for buying a new Ventura home, there are several costs to consider. These include the down payment, the closing costs, moving expenses, and the monthly mortgage payments, insurance, and taxes. However, there is something else to add to that budget....home maintenance.

 

 

Even if you are buying a newer home with no immediate repair needs, there are 5 maintenance tasks that you should always take care of upon moving in and therefore should prepare for the costs.

 

  1. Change Locks - Practically anyone could have a key to your new home without you knowing it. Protect your family and your belongings by changing the locks on every exterior door of the home.

  2. Trim Trees - Make sure the trees, especially any older ones, are in good health and not too close to the home itself. Have the trees trimmed and inspected by a professional.

  3. Maintain HVAC - A damaged or failing HVAC system can be very expensive to fix. Stay ahead of any potential issues by having the system maintained right when you move in.

  4. Add Fire Extinguisher - It is important to always have at least one fire extinguisher in your home. Purchase one for the kitchen when you move in.

  5. Clean Chimney - If your new Ventura home has a fireplace, make sure you have it professionally cleaned out since you cannot know for certain when the last time it was cleaned was.

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In addition to these 5 home maintenance costs, you should also budget for appliances, furniture, paint, and any other home repairs/updates you need to make. Knowing these costs as you go into purchasing the home will help you stay within your financial means.

 

 

After you have been living in your home for a while, however, the budgeting should not stop. You should always keep aside some money to help you cover any unexpected repairs and emergencies that could arise at any time. In order to help you afford these costs, it is a good idea to set aside 1% of your home's purchase price every year for repairs. Just remember that the money you are putting into your home is just building equity for you and your family so it is worth it.

 


Visit our Website and follow us on Facebook for other great home maintenance and home buying tips!

Top Reasons To Hire A Realtor For Your Buying & Selling Needs!

by The Blake Mashburn Group

Enjoy Buying or Selling your home by working with a realtor! Although you might be tempted to navigate the housing market on your own, there are numerous reasons why working with a realtor is beneficial to you. Check out these top reasons why you should work with a realtor (especially the top realtor in Ventura!!) when buying or selling your home!

 

Experience & Knowledge: With all of the years of experience and education, realtors have a deep understanding of every aspect of the real estate market.

Information Filter: Instead of having to weed out the information that you actually need, realtors can do that for you. They will only show you houses that fit within your needs and budget.

Local Expert: Realtors are experts in their communities. From knowing neighborhoods to understanding the market specifics of their location, realtors provide an invaluable resource.

Guide: Realtors always lead with guidance. They will always keep your best interests at heart and provide suggestions as you move throughout the buying or selling process.

Networker: Realtors have a vast network of professionals that work in related fields. They can provide recommendations of service providers that will help assist you with any of your real estate needs.

Negotiator: Negotiation is a major part of buying a house and realtors are incredibly well versed in this area. Unlike a buyer or seller who has more of an emotional connection to the homes, a realtor stays professional throughout the negotiation process.

Time & Hassle Saver: There are a lot of technical aspects....and paperwork....that go into real estate deals. Avoid missing any important details by working with a realtor who knows exactly what to look for. They will also be there to answer any and every question you might have throughout the process.

 

If you are interested in Buying or Selling your home and working with the best realtor in Ventura County, give Blake Mashburn a call today at (805) 856-9350 or visit our website at http://www.blakemashburn.com/.

Halloween Festivities In Ventura!

by The Blake Mashburn Group


Halloween is right around the corner! Get in the spooky spirit before October 31st with fantastic Halloween themed events in Ventura! There is fun to be had by all ages all weekend long throughout our great community!

 

Spooktacular: A Halloween Variety Show!

Date: Friday, October 25th

Time: 8:00 pm - 10:00 pm

Location: Namba Performing Arts Space (47 South Oak Street)

Cost: $15 per person

Unity Theatre Collective returns to Namba with              “Spooktacular: A Halloween Variety Show!”Join the Unity Theatre Collective for a fantastic variety show featuring local comedians, actors, and musicians! Come dressed in your best costume to be entered in the costume contest. This is a family friendly event!

Haunted Housing Run/Walk

Date: Saturday, October 26th

Time: 8:00 am - 10:00 am

Location: Ventura State Beach (901 San Pedro Street) 

Cost: $40 per 5K participant | $50 per 10K participant | FREE Kids Dash

Work off all the Halloween treats during this fun oceanfront run! Choose from the 5K or 10K and enter the little ones in the Kids Dash! Along with the races, there will be inflatables, photo booth, face painting, food, and more! All proceeds from this event benefit the Housing Authority of the City of San Buenaventura's Scholarship Program.

 

HOWL-O-Ween Dog Costume Contest 2019

Date: Saturday, October 26th

Time: 10:30 am - Noon

Location: Ventura Harbor Village (1583 Spinnaker Drive)

Cost: FREE!

Your furry friend can get in on the fun too! Dress your dog in their best costume to win great prizes! Be sure to register in advance and arrive at 10:30 am for check in. There will be plenty of photo opportunities and all pets will receive a treat!

 

Mummy Pumpkins!!!

Date: Saturday, October 26th

Time: Noon - 10:00 pm

Location: Seaward Brewing (1920 Goodyear Avenue, Suite D)

Cost: $8 per pumpkin

Sip on some delicious brews (or non-alcoholic beverage) and decorate your very own unique pumpkin! It will be a fun crafting event for all ages!

 

Kids Seaside Trick or Treat 2019

Date: Saturday, October 26th

Time: 1:00 pm - 3:00 pm

Location: Ventura Harbor Village (1583 Spinnaker Drive)

Cost: FREE!

Spend the afternoon trick or treating at the stores of Ventura Harbor with your family. There will be loads of family fun!

 

All Ages Halloween Costume Contest & Downtown Trick-or-Treating

Date: Saturday, October 26th

Time: 3:00 pm - 7:00 pm

Location: Main Street Mini Park (Between Oak & Palm)

Cost: FREE!

Don your costume and gather even more Halloween treats throughout Downtown Ventura.

 

Haunted HalloWINE Costume Ball

Date: Saturday, October 26th

Time: 5:00 pm - 8:00 pm

Location: Ventura City Hall (501 Poli Street)

Cost: $40 per person

Enjoy an adult celebration of Halloween! Sip on delicious wine, dine on fantastic food, and dance the night away to live music! There will be prizes for the best costumes for individuals, couples, and groups!

 

Halloween Party at The Greek

Date: Saturday, October 26th

Time: 9:00 pm - 2:00 am

Location: Ventura Harbor Village (1583 Spinnaker Drive)

Cost: Call (805) 650-5350

Head to The Greek Greek Mediterranean Steak and Seafood restaurant for a full night of dancing, food, and cocktails. Prizes will be awards to the scariest costume, most original costume, and best couple costume. Please note, this is an adult only event.

 

Blake Mashburn wishes everyone in Ventura a very Happy Halloween! Follow us on Facebook and check out our Website for more fantastic community events taking place throughout the year!

Celebrate Ojai at Ojai Day!!!

by The Blake Mashburn Group

Celebrate everything you love about Ojai at the 26th Annual Ojai Day!!! Come explore all the best art, culture, food, and entertainment that Ojai has to offer at this favorite community street festival. Enjoy unique vendors, incredible performances of music and dance, fun children's activities and games, cool classic cars, stunning Mandala street art, delicious food and beverages, and SO much more! All this is taking place this Saturday, October 19th, from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm throughout beautiful downtown Ojai. Do not miss out on any of the family friendly fun taking place at this year's Ojai Day!

 

Flying Embers Ojai's Own Stage

  • 9:00 am | Dave Cipriani

  • 11:00 am  | Kerri Climer Band

  • 12:00 pm | "Rockin' It Old School Seniors Choir"

  • 1:00 pm | Danny McGaw and The 33

  • 2:00 pm | The Turner Sisters

  • 3:00 pm | Smitty and Julija

  • 4:00 pm | Ojai Songwriters

Ojai Valley Youth Foundation Teen Stage

  • 10:05 am | Nordoff Dance

  • 10:20 am | Hadley Julca

  • 10:40 am| Lily Fields

  • 11:20 am | Shannon David

  • 12:00 pm | Quinn Davis

  • 12:25 pm | The Senate

  • 1:00 pm | Lucca Kun

  • 1:30 pm | Beckett McDowell

  • 2:00 pm | Besant Hill School

  • 3:00 pm | Kaylie Turner

  • 3:45 pm | Kyra Maal King

  • 4:00 pm | Johnny Bennett

  • 4:15 pm | Joy Mathebula

  • 4:30 pm | Maggie Sonenshine

  • 4:45 pm | John Geyer

 

Blake Mashburn wishes everyone an amazing time celebrating everything that makes Ojai an incredible place to live! Check out our Website and follow us on Facebook for more fantastic community events throughout the year!  

 

Image Credit: Ojai Day

"Treat" Potential Buyers With A Beautiful Front Porch!

by The Blake Mashburn Group

In a couple weeks, your front porch will be welcoming trick or treaters to your door for a tasty Halloween snack. Outside of Halloween, you can "treat" potential buyers with the beauty of your front porch. If you are looking to sell your Ventura area home (or are just looking for a fresh facelift to your homestead), update it's curb appeal by creating a cozy, outdoor living space. Give it a good cleaning and utilize these design elements for the perfect front porch for your home!

 

 

1. A Spot To Sit

Create a great gathering spot on your front porch with some comfortable seating. Place two chairs together or add a porch swing for an outdoor living space.

2. A Small Table

Now that you have a great spot to sit, you need somewhere convenient to rest a book or a refreshing beverage. Add an outdoor coffee table or side table to your seating area.

3. A Welcome Mat

A doormat isn't just a spot to wipe your feet before entering. It is also a great design accessory for your front porch.

4. Color Palette

Consider the color of your home's trim or the front door and coordinate the colors you use on your front porch. Maintain the same color palette for any outdoor accents you use, including for your seating, doormat, and plants.

5. Potted Plants

Bring the greenery of your landscape up onto your front porch with potted plants. Use perennials, succulents, or other hearty green plants that will last all year round.

6. Seasonal Plants

A great way to update your front porch based on the time of year is with seasonal plants. Thanks to the temperate California weather, you can switch it up all four seasons. Add a vase of plants to your table or place window boxes around the porch. Pumpkins and mums are a great addition for this time of year.

7. Draw The Eye

A beautiful way to draw potential buyer's eyes to your front porch is through the landscaping. Add colorful plants leading toward your front door. As an added bonus, this creates an even more pleasant environment for those sitting on the front porch.

8. Brighten It Up

Create a welcoming area with lighting. A good rule of thumb is to have at least 3 light sources placed around the front porch. Make sure that your house numbers are always well-lit so your home is easy to locate no matter the time of day.

9. Cool It Down

The California sun can be too much in the summer and ea. Instead of avoiding your front porch, there are some awesome features you can add to cool it down and make it look great on those hot days! Consider adding an outdoor ceiling fan for a nice breeze. Fade-resistant outdoor curtains are also the perfect solution to block the sun and create some privacy.


 

Work with Blake Mashburn for all your Selling needs! Give us a call at (805) 856-9350 or visit http://www.blakemashburn.com/ to get started today!

 

Narrow The Search On To The Perfect Ventura Home!

by The Blake Mashburn Group

If you are ready to Buy a Ventura home, finding the perfect home for you and your family can seem like a daunting task. It can be as stressful as it is exciting. However, there are several steps that you can take to help take some of the stress out of the home search. These steps will help you narrow your focus and lead you to the home of your dreams in no time!

 

1. Get Pre-Approval!

Before you begin your search, you should get pre-approval for a mortgage. Besides making you a more competitive buyer in the market, it will also allow you to understand your budget. This way you can search for homes that fit within the amount you have been pre-approved for.

 

2. Must Haves Vs. Wish List!

It is important to stay focused during your home search. The best way to do that is to prioritize what you features you really need for your new home. Make a list of must haves, should haves, and wish list features.

 

3. Find A Neighborhood!

The neighborhood is just as important as the house, and each neighborhood has its own distinctive characteristics. Check out the neighborhood for its school district, amenities, and commute before you start looking for individual houses within it.

 

4. Pick A House Style!

Think about what style of home will best fit your family's needs based on the must have list you made previously. Then, look at homes that fit that style. This will help you narrow your search and be more likely to have you looking at homes that will be a good fit.

 

5. Keep Notes!

In order to remember what feature liked of each individual home, you should take notes on the listing sheet as you tour the property. Another helpful thing to do is take photographs of the things you like and don't like so you accurately recall what the home was like.

 

 

Find your dream home today! Search Ventura Homes For Sale! Give Blake Mashburn a call at (805) 856-9350 and visit his website (http://www.blakemashburn.com/) to get started!

Don't Get TRICKED By These Home Buying Myths!

by The Blake Mashburn Group

October might be the time for TRICKS but you don't want to feel that way when you are buying your first home in the Ventura area. Purchasing your new home can be an understandably be a daunting process! While there is plenty of real estate advice out there on financing, the process, steps to take, and more, we know that there is a lot of information that steers first time home buyers in the wrong direction. Never fear! We are here to tell you the truth about several common myths that you might hear and make your journey towards your new home a TREAT!

 

Myth #1 | It begins with the search.

Fact | You've made the decision purchase your first home. You know your lists of must haves in your new home. It's time to start scrolling the internet for your dream home, right?! Wrong! Although you can begin an initial search for homes to see what is currently available, you should not have the mindset that this is the first step in the home buying process. Your very first step should be getting your finances in order. Make sure your credit is in good shape and get pre-approved for a mortgage. There are two major reasons why you want to take these steps first: (1) you can determine a realistic budget and search for homes that fit within your appropriate range and (2) you will stand out to sellers since you have proof that you are financially ready to purchase a new home.

 

Myth #2 | Bad credit means you have to wait.

Fact | It is undoubtedly true that having bad credit will make it more difficult for you to purchase your new home right at this moment. However, you do not have to wait. There are financing options, such as FHA loans, that might still be available to you. Just be sure to do thorough research about all the options you have available so that you make the best choice for your current and future financial situation.

 

Myth #3 | You will save money with a 30-year mortgage.

Fact | A 30-year mortgage does give you more time to pay back the loan, which seems like a way for many first time home buyers to save money. However, if you break it down you discover that you are actually paying more. It takes you twice the time to pay back the same amount you would have borrowed with a 15-year mortgage. That doubling of years means a dramatic increase in the amount of interest payments you are making. Check out our helpful Finance Information for more on the types of loans available. We are not saying that you should not choose a 30-year loan. You just need to do plenty of research to determine what will best fit your lifestyle.

 

Myth #4 | The only cost you pay upfront is the down payment.

Fact | You have enough money saved and set aside for the down payment. That's great! BUT, what about added costs for credit reports, closing costs, home inspections, insurance, and anything else that could unexpectedly pop up. Make sure that you have additional money set aside for these added costs that are almost always part of the home buying process.

 

Myth #5 | You must pay 20% for your down payment.

Fact | A 20% down payment keeps you from having to pay Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI). It does not mean that you must pay 20%. See if you are eligible for loans with a 5% or 10% down payment if you are willing to pay monthly fees for PMI. You may also qualify for FHA loans or other down payment assistance options.

 

Myth #6 | You do not really need a home inspection.

Fact | You should NEVER skip the home inspection. Doing so puts you at risk of buying a home with a lot of underlying, hidden issues. This will turn your new "dream" home into a money and time pit. Avoid any of this by having a thorough home inspection done before you negotiate a deal for the home.

 

Myth #7 | Since you can move eventually, your must haves should focus on just your immediate situation.

Fact | You never know how long you will stay in a home. It is best to find a home that can still fit you as you and your family continue to grow and move forward. Think about your immediate needs and your needs 10, 20, or even 30 years from now. Regardless of what actually ends up happening, this gives you the option to avoid or delay moving in the future and can also help you choose a home that will have greater resale value if you do not to sell someday.

 

Myth #8 | You will lose the home if you do not offer the asking price.

Fact | It is true that sellers are hoping to get the most amount of money for their home. However, offering a price lower than asking does not mean that sellers will automatically deny your offer. Sellers are often open to negotiating with buyers that show their finances are in order. If you have awesome credit, are pre-approved for a loan, and/or have your down payment ready to go, you show that you are a serious buyer and that the process can begin immediately. This is often enough to make sellers willing to come down on the price.

 

Myth #9 | A realtor is unnecessary these days.

Fact | An Experienced Realtor by your side during the home buying process is an invaluable resource. Sure, the internet can help you easily search for houses or do some own research on your own but it can never replace all that a realtor does. Especially when it comes to first time home buyers, it is important to work with a realtor who understands the local market, has many years experience negotiating, knows exactly what to look for in a home, and so much more. Having that real estate ally will help alleviate a lot of stress for you during the process.

 


Now that you know the facts, you are ready to BUY your dream home in Ventura County! Give Blake Mashburn a call today or visit his website at http://www.blakemashburn.com/ so he can help make your dreams a reality!

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Contact Information

Photo of BLAKE MASHBURN Real Estate
BLAKE MASHBURN
Century 21 Everest
1190 S. Victoria Avenue, Suite #100
Ventura CA 93003
Office: 805-856-9350
Cell: 805-368-0202
Fax: 805-642-1424