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Giving Thanks To You On This Thanksgiving!

by The Blake Mashburn Group

 

Whether it is your family and friends, your health, your career, your home, or something has simple as a sunny day, there is much to be thankful for. As you gather around the feast with your loved ones tomorrow, take a moment to reflect on everything in your life that you are thankful for. 

 

As I think back on my year, I too have much to be thankful for. I would like to take this moment, though, to share my gratitude for you, my clients. Serving you and your families this year and during past years brings me the greatest joy. I am thankful to be able to help buyers find their dream home in beautiful West Ventura County and help sellers sell their current homes quickly and for their asking price. 

 

With the holiday season upon us and the new year right around the corner, I look forward to helping more people with all of their real estate needs. Whether you are looking to Buy or Sell, Blake Mashburn is here to help you every step of the way. 

 

Once again, thank you to all my friends, family, and clients for a wonderful year. I wish everyone in Ventura County and beyond a very happy and bountiful Thanksgiving!

 

Choose The Right Timing Option For Selling And Buying Your Home!

by The Blake Mashburn Group

The timing of Selling and Buying your home is imperative when you enter the real estate market. You want to be fully prepared as you work to sell your current home and buy a new one. It is important to fully understand your finances as well as your personal needs throughout the process. Here are 7 of the most common timing options for selling and buying your home.

 

1. Selling Before Buying | This is the most common scenario. By selling your home first, you are helping ensure that you have the finances in place to purchase a new home. It helps you avoid the mess of dealing with two mortgages at once.

 

2. Buying Before Selling | This is the most convenient scenario. It gives you the option of updating your old home to improve its value for sale and/or making improvements to your new home before moving in. It eliminates the stress of having to move immediately. However, the major downfall of this option is that you will be paying two mortgages at once. Make sure you can truly afford to do this before choosing this option.

 

3. Buying & Selling Concurrently | This is a popular option. Timing really is everything for this option. You hope that you are able to sell your current home in order to give you the finances to afford the next one. However, it also puts a lot of the control out of your hands and into the hands of a buyer of your current home and the seller of the new home. Work closely with your realtor to help you sell your home in a timely manner and successfully purchase your new home.

 

4. Selling on Contingency | When selling your home, you can put a contingency clause on your listing that you will sell once you find "suitable housing". This can hinder the sale of your home though since many buyers want to be able to move in as soon as the deal is done. Make sure you only use this option when you have exhausted all others.

 

5. Buying On Contingency | Similar to the previous option, this allows the buyer to add a clause that states that they will purchase the new home once their current home sells. This will only work if you find a seller that is willing to wait for you.

 

6. Right of First Refusal | Instead of using a home sale contingency, you can use a Right of First Refusal (ROFR). This allows the buyer to step in front of any other buyers that might make an offer on the home. You must show the seller that your finances are in order. Please note, many sellers will not agree to this option since it limits the offers they could receive on their home.

 

7. Renting | The final option is to rent out your current home instead of selling. You will be able to cover your current mortgage while you look for a new home. Make sure that you find a reliable tenant if you decide to rent out your home.

 

Figure out the perfect timing option for you by working with your Experienced Realtor as you buy and sell your home. Give Blake Mashburn a call today or visit our website at http://www.blakemashburn.com/.

How To Spot The Opportunity To Save On Your Dream Home!

by The Blake Mashburn Group

There are always opportunities for buyers to score great deals on their new homes. You just need to know what to look for. Although offering below asking price can be risky, it also can pay off! It's a matter of being smart about it. Working with your realtor can help you craft a winning offer that will not be insulting to the sellers and still save you some money. If you are looking into Buying your dream home in Ventura, watch out for these signs that you might be able to save by offering below asking price!

 

1. The Home is Obviously Overpriced.

Some homes are just plain expensive and worth every penny. Other homes are listed high but inaccurately. This often occurs because sellers have an emotional attachment to their home and think it is worth more than it truly is. Ask your realtor for comps in the neighborhood. If the home is clearly overpriced, it might be easier to come in with a lower, more appropriate offer.

 

2. The Seller is Ready to Move.

Maybe the seller is moving out of the area for a new job or perhaps their financial situation no longer allows them to afford the home. In these and other cases, the seller will be anxious to unload their property as quickly as possible. Do some detective work with your realtor to find out the motivation for selling. If it is clear that the seller is ready to go, they will be more receptive to a low offer in order to speed the process along.

 

3. The Home is On and Off the Market.

A home was on the market, then pulled off, and now is back again. The seller is likely starting to get annoyed with the whole process and is ready to get it done with once and for all. This is a great time to offer below listing price.

 

4. You are Open.

If you are flexible on your home wish list and/or are willing to make renovations on any home you buy, then the most important factor for you should be price. Being open to a variety of homes allows you the opportunity to offer low whenever you want until you finally score that incredible deal.

 

5. The Home is Out of Date.

You walked into a home and feel like you just stepped back in time several decades. This will scare off many buyers, particularly those that are looking for move in ready. The seller is likely have some difficulty selling. If you are willing to put in some work once you move in, consider an offer below asking price.

 

Score an incredible deal on a new home by looking for these 5 signs. Check out our current Homes for Sale throughout western Ventura County to start the process. Give Blake Mashburn a call today or visit our website at http://www.blakemashburn.com/.

Explore Our Agricultural Backyard During Ventura County Farm Day!

by The Blake Mashburn Group

Do not miss the 7th Annual Ventura County Farm Day!!! "Explore. Learn. Taste" this Saturday, November 9th, from 10:00 am to 3:00 pm throughout Ventura County. Explore 15+ farms, ranches, and agricultural organizations in our area with great family friendly activities and tours. Celebrate the beautiful countryside right outside our backdoors and learn more about where our local food comes from. Click on the links below to learn more about activities offered at each location and plan out your day!

 

2019 Farm Day Locations

Agromin | 6859 Arnold Drive, Oxnard

AGQ Laboratory | 2451 Eastman Avenue Suite 1, Oxnard

Alpacas at Windy Hill | 7660 Bradley Road, Somis

Earthtrine Farm | 1091 Cuyama Road, Ojai

Good Farms | 1980 South Rice Avenue, Oxnard

UC Hansen Agricultural Research & Extension Center | 287 South Briggs Road, Santa Paula

Houweling's Tomatoes | 645 West Laguna Road, Camarillo

Laguna Farms | 203 Wood Road, Oxnard

Limoneira | 12390 West Telegraph Road, Santa Paula

Ojai Olive Oil | 1811 Ladera Road, Ojai

Oxnard Farm Park | 251 Gottfried Place, Oxnard

***Official Farm Day BBQ Lunch Location (Cowboy John's Smoking BBQ)***

Petty Ranch | 11971 Darling Road, Saticoy

***Farm Day Hub Location***

Come to the SEEAG's Farm Lab at Petty Ranch for fun activities, helpful information, and

special exhibitors including Rincon-Vitova Insectaries and Chivas Skin Care.

Rancho Camulos Museum | 5164 East Telegraph Road, Piru

McGrath Family Farm & The Abundant Table | 1012 West Ventura Boulevard, Camarillo

Ventura County AG Museum | 926 Railroad Avenue, Santa Paula

 

**Downloadable Farm Day Map**

 

 

Get the celebrations started early with the Wine Farm-To-Table Dinner! Come enjoy a delicious chef prepared pig roast dinner, incredible wine flight, and fun live music on Thursday, November 7th, at 5:00 pm. This great event is taking place at Topa Mountain Winery (821 West Ojai Avenue, Ojai). General Admission Tickets cost $95 (plus fees) per person). VIP Tickets cost $125 (plus fees) per person and include early entry at 4:00 pm and reserved seating. Click HERE to purchase tickets.

 

 

 

The incredible farms throughout Ventura County are one of the many assets that make this area a great place to live. If you are interested in Buying your dream home in one of our communities, search our Homes for Sale. Give ​​Blake Mashburn a call today or visit our website at http://www.blakemashburn.com/.  

 

 

Image Credit: Ventura County Farm Day

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.

​​

 

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/.

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!

Get Approval For Your Mortgage By Following These Financial Rules!

by The Blake Mashburn Group

You just put in a mortgage application for a new Ventura CA Home! Congrats! Although you might know without a shadow of a doubt that you will get approved, your financial diligence is not over! The lender will be tracking your assets throughout the process. Any changes can therefore have a negative impact on your qualification for the loan. Here are the main financial rules to follow while you are going through the mortgage application process!

 

1. Stay At The Same Bank: Remember, lenders need to source and track assets. To make sure that your lender can easily source and track your assets, you should keep the same bank account(s) that you listed on your application. Avoid closing your account or opening a new one at a different bank.

2. Keep All Credit Accounts Open: Closing credit accounts will change your credit history (which goes beyond payment history to look at length and depth of credit) as well as the ratio of your credit usage to the percentage of available credit. This will have a negative impact on your score.

3. Don't Open New Credit: Stay on track for approval and keep your interest rates lower by not opening any new lines of credit, including auto loans or additional credit cards.

4. Avoid Cash Deposits: It is important that your deposits are traceable and cash is not. Ask your lender the best way to document transactions before depositing cash into your bank account.

5. Maintain Your Job & Current Salary: Your annual income and its source are important factors in your application. Avoid any changes in your employment.

6. Do Not Purchase Other Large Items: This is one of the more common mistakes. Stay on track to qualify to avoid making any additional large purchases (ie automobiles, furniture, electronics, etc.) during this time.

7. Don’t Become A Co-Signer: Although you might not be the one making the payment, the payment will be counted against you if you co-sign on a loan. You might want to help out your friend or loved one but hold off doing so while you are looking to purchase a home.

 

 

For more Home Buying and Home Financing Tips, check out our Website and follow us on Facebook!  

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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