Saturday, July 22, 2017

Today's Best Mansion: It's lavish. It's huge. It's grand. It's expensive. 

#1       100 La Gorce Circle, Miami Beach, Florida 33141 with 7 bedrooms, 10 baths and 10,155 sq.ft. is listed for sale at $34,900,000.
Total renovation of 1952 Miami Beach Georgian masterpiece. Full restoration of architectural details. NEW INSIDE & OUT: 950+ sq ft chef's kitchen. ensuite baths, walnut floors, roof, impact window & doors, electric & plumbing, 30x60 pool+ hot tub, 2 docks with lifts, sea wall cap, irrigation, HydroCourt tennis court - ranked top 3 in US. Hi-tech security. Wide setbacks all around offer utmost privacy. Guest wing in main house & separate guest house. Almost 2 acres w/500+ on water.

Today's Top LA Luxury Estate.

The median home value in Los Angeles County is $566,400. Los Angeles County home values have gone up 6.8% over the past year, Zillow predicts hey will increase 1.5% within the next year.

The median home value in Brentwood, 90049 is $2,425,700. Brentwood home values have 
gone up 3.0% over the past year.  Zillow predicts they will increase 0.6%within the next year

The median home value in Malibu is $2,885,000.  Malibu home values have gone up 4.6% over the past year.  Zillow predicts they will increase 0.9% within the year.

The median home value in Bel Air, 90077 is $3,264,800  Bel Air home values have gone up 0.5% over the past year.  Zillow predicts they will go down  (-0.2) within the year.

The median home value in Beverly Hills 90210 is $4,893,900.  Beverly Hills home values have gone up 0.4% over the past year.  Zillow predicts they will increase 1.3%  within the next year. 

#1       710 19th Street, Santa Monica, CA 90402 with 5 bedrooms, 6 baths 
and 4,730 sq.ft. is listed for sale a $6,295,000.

Newly completed and exquisitely designed 5 bed, 5.5 bath traditional home boasting bright open floor plan, hardwood floors, tons of natural light, high ceilings and tasteful finishes throughout. Enjoy the master chef's kitchen featuring SS appliances and beautiful marble island. Expansive family room with sliding glass doors opening to gorgeous backyard with stunning pool, perfect for entertaining. Impressive master suite with balcony, fireplace and en suite. This must-see home is truly remarkable!

Today's Top Phoenix Luxury Estate  

A photo showing the skyline of Phoenix, looking north.  It shows the various buildings of the downtown area, as well as Sunnyslope Mountain in the background

The median home value in Scottsdale is $421,200. Scottsdale home values have gone up 2.8% over the past year.  Zillow predicts they will increase 1.4% within the next year. 

    The median home value in Carefree is $751,100. Carefree home values have gone up 3.6% over the past year.  Zillow predicts they will increase 2.5% within the next year.

    The median home value in Paradise Valley is $1,611,700.  %home values have gone up 1.0% over the past year. Zillow predicts they will increase 1.3% within the next year.

    #1       10507 North General Pass, Prescott, AZ 86503 with 4 bedrooms, 5 baths and 9,468 sq.ft. is listed for sale at $2,600,000.
    Ranch,1 Story, Site Built Single Family - Prescott, AZ (photo 1)
    CAR COLLECTORS' AND HORSE LOVERS' DREAM PROPERTY. This spectacular property w/ stunning views features custom 4500 sqft main home, 2000 sqft guest house & 800 sqft caretaker apt. Top-of-the-line amenities around every turn include travertine stone, maple floors, solid alder doors. True chef's kitchen w/ Viking appliances, leathered granite counters, and formal dining room w/wet bar. Master suite retreat w/ unparalleled views & cozy fireplace. 3 additional BRs have ensuite baths with tile and granite. 12-car detached and 4-car attached garages. RV pkg, 15 stall barn w/ office, tack room, 3/4 BA, 2.5 wells. Riding arena and announcer's booth complete the total equestrian package. 50x50 hangar for additional toys and vehicles. Home, Dude Ranch, Training Facility? Your new lifestyle awaits! 

    Ranch,1 Story, Site Built Single Family - Prescott, AZ (photo 37)

    Ranch,1 Story, Site Built Single Family - Prescott, AZ (photo 33)

    Ranch,1 Story, Site Built Single Family - Prescott, AZ (photo 40)

    Today's Top San Diego Luxury Estate 

    The median home value in San Diego County is $543,400. San Diego County home values have gone up 6.5% over the past year. Zillow predicts they will remain even 4.2% within the next year.

    The median home value in La Jolla, 92037 is $1,476,600. La Jolla, 92037 home values have gone up 1.1% this past year.  Zillow predicts they will increase 3.3% within the next year.

    The median home value in Solana Beach 92075 is $1,284,100. 
    Solana Beach 92075 home values have gone up 4.9% this past year. Zillow predicts they will rise 3.7%% within the next year.

    The median home value in Del Mar 92014 is $1,615,300 Del Mar home values have gone up 3.2% over the past year.  Zillow predicts they will increase 4.0% within the next year.

    The median home value in Rancho Santa Fe is $2,593,300. Rancho Santa Fe home values have declined -(2.9)% over the past year and Zillow predicts they will decline -(0.7)% within the next year.

    #1        2418 Ocean Front, Del Mar, CA 92014 with 4 bedrooms, 3 baths and 2,464 sq.ft. is listed for sale at $10,500,000.

    Rare opportunity to live on the beautiful sand in Del Mar. Welcome to this beach front estate that features an over sized lot, 50 feet of beach front. Enjoy the ocean and views from the interior floor to ceiling windows or beach front seamless glass Terrace. Just a few steps out back and your in the sand. Utilities are already underground. Thermador and subzero appliances, Stunning fossil kitchen granite, soft close drawers, Terrazzo flooring and shower, upgraded carpet on second floor are just a few of the amenities this property features. Not to mention 4 bedrooms (2) are masters with beachfront views. Adjacent to Del Mar Race Track/Fairgrounds.

    Today's Top San Francisco Luxury Estate

    Image result for San Francisco skyline pictures

    The median home value in San Francisco is $1,194,500. San Francisco 
    home values have gone up 5.5% over the past year.  Zillow predicts they will decrease by 1.5% within the year.

    The median home value in Sausalito is $1,256,800. Sausalito home values have gone up 3.5% over the past year. Zillow predicts they will rise 2.0% within the next year. 

    The median home value in Tiburon is $2,479,000. Tiburon home values 
    have gone up 3.1% over the past year.   Zillow predicts they will rise increase 1.5% within the next year. 

    The medium home value in Saratoga is $2,453,600.  Saratoga home values have gone up 2.8% this past year.  Zillow predicts they will increase 1.7% within the next year. 

    The median home value in Atherton is $6,343,800. Atherton home values have gone up 7.3% over the past year and Zillow predicts they will increase 1.8% within the next year.

    #1       5287 Blackhawk Drive, Danville, CA 94506 with 5 bedrooms, 7 baths 
    and 7,538 sq.ft. is listed for sale at $4,850,000.
    Stunning update of timeless, Beautiful custom home with the finest of everything, home Elegant, traditional curb appeal. Spectacular and lush, approx. 0.74 acre setting on Blackhawk’s secluded, Falls Golf Course. Fabulous expansive and flexible, approx. 7,538 sq.ft. with 5 bedrooms, 5.5 baths. Extensively and meticulously remodeled throughout. Two Master bedrooms plus 1 studio with outside access, it can be in-law or guest room. Incredible lighted sport court with putting, chipping, hitting nets, Swimming pool, Spa, BBQ area, Much more.

    Today's Top Seattle Luxury Estate

    Image result for Seattle 
    The median home value in Kirkland is $665,900.  Kirkland home values have gone up 17.8% over the past year.  Zillow predicts they will rise 8.0% within the next year.

    The median home value in Seattle is $670,300. Seattle home values have gone up 14.5% over the past year. Zillow predicts they will rise 7.3% within the next year.

    The median home value in Bellevue is $819,700. Bellevue home values have gone up 15.6% over the past year. Zillow predicts they will rise 7.4% within the next year. 
    The median home value in Mercer Island is $1,401,000, Mercer island home values have gone up 10.7% over the past year.  Zillow predicts they will rise 6.7% with the next year.

    The median home value in Clyde Hill is $2,425,000. Clyde Hill home values have gone up 13.0% over the past year. Zillow predicts they will rise 6.8% within the next year.

    The median home value in Medina is $2,545,200. Medina home values have gone up 13.5% over the past year and Zillow predicts they will rise 7.0% within the next year.

    #1       18130 SE 41st Lane, Bellevue, WA 98008 with 4 bedrooms, 4 baths 
    and 5,060 sq.ft. is listed for sale at $5,195,000.
    Spectacular waterfront estate on a rare, private 1+ acre of beautifully manicured grounds. All the main living areas take advantage of the glorious Lake Sammamish, Mount Baker and Cascade mountain views and the private setting offers an oasis of seclusion. The 100 feet of level waterfront includes a newly renovated dock. Adorable 1,000+/- square foot guest house at the water?s edge offers a loft bedroom, a recently remodeled three-quarter bath and a wall of windows and French doors to the covered porch. The main home was substantially rebuilt in 2010, using the highest quality materials and craftsmanship including granite, travertine, marble and Venetian plaster wall finishing. Gracious living and dining rooms each have their own gas fireplaces. Dream kitchen with custom cabinetry, honed slab granite and Miele stainless steel appliances. Luxurious master suite with marble 5-piece bath. Fantastic floor plan includes a huge bonus room over the 5-car garage.

    Today's Top Real Estate News   

    Here's How You Can Qualify For The NYC Housing Lottery

    By Venus Wong

    Refinery29© Photo: Courtesy of Pacific Park. Refinery29 

    Scoring a subsidized unit from the NYC Affordable Housing Lottery is the ultimate dream for many New Yorkers, but it's especially important for those who can't afford rent in the city's ever-booming real estate market.

    To some, it may even top winning the jackpot: Imagine renting a brand-new apartment in a luxury development for only a couple hundred dollars a month — a small fraction of the market price — and you'll understand why the city's Department of Housing Preservation and Development is constantly overflowing with applications.

    This housing program is used by developers as a means to receive incentives from the government, typically in the form of tax breaks. Among their properties — many of which are centrally-located and come with fancy amenities like elevators, balconies, doorman service, and swimming pools — a certain number of units are allotted to lower-income and middle-income households. Sounds tempting? Well, they don't call it a lottery for no reason. Each project can receive up to 100,000 online applications, and even the less sought-after buildings can garner inquiries in the thousands.

    To help you understand the very specific requirements involved, we've put together a shortlist of steps and criteria that qualify you for the housing lottery. May the odds be ever in your favor.

    What Exactly Does "Affordable" Mean?

    The word "affordable" may mean different things to different people, but the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) defines "affordable housing" as rentals that take up no more than 30% of a household's income. The department also calculates the median income for all cities in the country. The number — known as the Area Median Income (AMI) — for New York City is $85,900 for a three-person family in 2017. The rent is always configured to be a lot lower than the 30% ratio: Currently, the typical affordable housing rent for a studio is listed for between $300 and $700, and two-bedroom apartments average between $480 to $1,200.

    Where Low Down-Payment Mortgages Reign Supreme: Locking down a mortgage isn't easy when your credit is less than stellar and you don't have enough in the bank to make a decent down payment. Now, an August 2016 report from the Urban Institute, a Washington, D.C.-based think tank focused on housing and economic policy, shows certain MSAs, or metropolitan statistical areas, plunk down less cash than others when it comes to down payments.Speaking by phone, Bing Bai, a research associate with the Urban Institute, said the numbers were calculated from CoreLogic, a research firm with information on mortgage servicing throughout the U.S. Then, focusing on the period between May 1 and May 31 of this year, he crunched the data to find the mean origination FICO score for each MSA. (No idea what FICO stands for? You can <a href=";utm_medium=content&amp;utm_content=IB_3&amp;utm_campaign=low_down_payment_king">read up on the credit-scoring model here</a>.) He also determined each MSA's LTV, or, loan-to-value, (how much of a downpayment they made compared to the price of a house) in order to see just how low those down payments really were (the higher the LTV, the lower the down payment. For example, a borrower taking on a $70,500 mortgage to purchase a home appraised at $100,000 would have an LTV ratio of 70.50%.) Ultimately, he was able to identify the cities with lower FICO scores and lower down payments, which also tend to be cities which are struggling economically."What you're seeing is a reflection of the lower economy," said Sheryl Pardo, spokesperson for the institute. She adds that the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) "is an important player in those local communities," because it is helping people get into housing in these challenged areas. "Economically, FHA is king. That's who's helping people get on the ladder to homeownership," she says.If you're considering applying for a mortgage yourself, it helps to know where your credit stands before you begin the process. That's because your credit scores help determine what types of rates and terms you may qualify for.
    Income Requirement

    The annual income requirement for each property available for the lottery is then set by the local housing program. These numbers varies greatly, so it's important to check every listing that funnels through NYC Housing Connect, the online platform for these housing lottery applications. Keep in mind that, unless you're planning on living alone, the income bracket applies to the entire household — not just an individual. The requirement also applies to pre-tax income, so if you're picking up freelance gigs or earning tips, make sure to factor them into the equation. The income requirement for a studio apartment for single occupancy can be anywhere between $13,900 to $40,000, depending on the building.

    Filling Out Your Application

    Once you find the property of your dreams, your next step is to create your account on NYC Housing Connect and submit your application before the deadline. You'll be asked to provide information on the employment status and income of every person in your household. You can apply for as many lotteries as you like, but be sure not apply to the same lottery twice: Duplicate applications are automatically disqualified.

    Wait It Out

    Due to the high volume of demand, most applicants won't be notified if they haven't been randomly selected. Your chances of getting selected are higher if you reside within the community board of the property, so your best bet is to stick with your own neighborhood. People with disabilities and impairments are also given preference.

    Present Yourself At The Interview

    If you're lucky enough to be randomly selected in the lottery, the last obstacle to clear is to provide physically proof that you do belong to the income bracket. This means presenting a number of documents at the in-person interview, including pay stubs, tax returns from the last three years, and any paperwork regarding your assets.

    This can be a tricky and exhausting process, since virtually every single penny and anything of value you own will be taken into consideration. After a drawn-out interview, some applicants have been told that the gross value of their assets actually exceeded the maximum income requirement. So, going through all that trouble when you don't qualify for the government's standards of low- or medium-income will likely be a big waste of time and effort. However, this hasn't stopped some people from trying their luck again, because let's face it: A good deal on an apartment in NYC is worth the hassle.

    Today's Mortgage Rates
    Mortgage Rates Lowest in July 
    Jul 21 2017, 5:14PM

    Mortgage rates moved lower today, setting yet another new low for the month of July.  For the past 2 weeks, rates have been pushing back against a fairly abrupt spike that took place heading into the month.  Concerns over the European Central Bank's (ECB's) bond buying plans sparked the move higher, but those concerns were officially put to rest as of yesterday.  

    In simpler terms, extra demand for bonds pushes bond prices higher and rates lower.  The ECB buys LOTS of bonds.  This puts downward pressure on rates around the world (more so in Europe than in the US, but we still get some indirect benefit).  There was some concern at the end of June that the ECB was getting closer to announcing it would buy fewer bonds (thus the rate spike heading into July).  While that day will likely come eventually, yesterday's announcement assures markets that it hasn't been discussed yet.
    Today was relatively quiet for financial markets, with no significant economic data or events. Next week brings a Fed announcement, but it isn't expected to contain any bombshells.  

    52 Week
    30 Yr FRM4.00%4.03%-0.033.37%4.39%
    15 Yr FRM3.29%3.32%-0.032.72%3.61%
    FHA 30 Year Fixed3.65%3.70%-0.053.15%4.10%
    Jumbo 30 Year Fixed4.29%4.32%-0.033.47%4.60%
    5/1 Yr ARM3.18%3.20%-0.022.80%3.25%

    Thanks for reading "Today's Best Mansions"

    Looking for more information?  Have a comment?  Need a Realtor referral?  
    Please call, text or email me at 619-944-8749 or  Most 
    importantly, have a great day.


    Tom Furino

    PS.     Check out "Today's Best Mansions" and "Top Luxury Estates" in Los Angeles, Phoenix, San Diego, San Francisco and Seattle listed for sale anytime at: