Hawaii real estate Source – Tip’s and Guides Helping Home Buyers and Sellers - Your Kapolei Real Estate Specialists

REAL ESTATE NEWS
Brought to you by Neaulani Kuamo'o-Peck (RA) RS 73536 CLS, CNAS
 
Trend or Fad? Knowing the Difference Could Save You Money
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When updating your home (especially to put on the market), It's a good idea to incorporate current trends into your renovations. There's a fine line between trends and fads however, and the difference can affect your buyer pool.

Fads are characterized by an intense and widely shared enthusiasm for something, but they tend to fade in popularity quickly, and have little basis in practicality.

Looks nice! For now...

Trends have longer lifespans and are more sustainable as a market force. Trends indicate the general direction that something is developing over time. Often times, design trends can be predictable because they have a basis in practicality that justifies their popularity.

Fads can occasionally turn into trends, but it's hard to know in which cases that will happen. If your goal is to attract a wide range of buyers to your home and sell quickly, it's best to steer clear of design choices that are too new, too edgy, and too pricey. Let's break down a few current fads for consideration.

Wallpaper
Elk is In!"Thanks to Instagram and Pinterest, busy, bold wallpaper is back in a big way," says HomeLight. "Online searches for 'bold print wallpaper' have increased by 401% in the past year." While wallpaper can be great for adding a splash of individuality to your space, it's just that — individual. To some, wallpaper adds visual clutter, and if buyers can't picture themselves in that space, they're going to be more focused on the potential headache of taking all of that wallpaper down. Neutral paint tones, on the other hand, tend to have widespread appeal and can be easily changed by potential buyers.

Kitchen finishes
Watch HGTV for more than a few minutes these days and you'll probably see some fancy gold or brass finishes in the kitchen or bathrooms. We're filing this under "fad." Even though this type of finish has grown in popularity, you're still unlikely to find them in the majority of homes—especially in more suburban areas. If you live in a hip city with a large, design-savvy millennial buyer base, choosing these trendy finishes could pay off. For everyone else, sticking to finishes with more widespread appeal is a smarter move.

In recent years, open kitchen shelving has become quite popular on design shows. When staged properly and done right, open shelving can look great, but in the frenzy of everyday life it lacks function and looks cluttered and unorganized.

Bathrooms
Outside of finishes, it's important to consider the main features of your bathroom. Large walk-in showers have become more popular, but they often require ditching the bathtub. Consider your potential buyer before making such a drastic change. While you personally might not take many baths, a tub is often a must for young families with small children.
Call Neaulani 808-358-9700
neaulani@cbpacific.com
Neaulani Kuamo'o-Peck (RA) RS-73536
Coldwell Banker Pacific Properties
http://www.islandhomelife.com/
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REAL ESTATE NEWS Brought to you by Neaulani Kuamo'o-Peck (RA) RS 73536 CLS, CNAS

What's the skinny on jumbo loans?
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Let's talk about conforming loans vs. jumbo loans in the mortgage world.

The Guidelines
Each year in October, the Federal Housing Finance Agency, or FHFA, collects data on the national median home value and compares that number to October of the previous year. If there is an increase, the conforming loan limit will increase by the same amount.

In October 2019, the year-over-year median home value increase was 5.38%. Therefore, the conforming loan limit for a single-family home in 2020 will rise to $510,400, up from $484,350. The loan limits on multi-unit properties will rise to $653,550, $789,950 and $981,700 for a duplex, triplex and fourplex, respectively.

Should you apply for a jumbo loan?

Loan Differences
Loans amounts at or under these limits qualify as conforming loans. They "conform" to guidelines set forth by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Conforming loans make up the majority of residential loans funded. Loan amounts that are above these limits are referred to as jumbo loans. With a conforming loan, lenders are able to sell the mortgage in the secondary market, replenishing their credit lines in order to make more loans. Jumbo loans have no such robust secondary market. When a lender approves a jumbo loan, it assumes the risk should the loan ever go into default.

Naturally, this makes it more difficult to qualify for a jumbo loan. The minimum credit score for most conforming loans ranges from 580 to 620. Jumbo minimums range from 720 to 740. Some jumbo loans can require a lower score, but the rates and terms are much more stringent.

Down payment requirements for jumbo loans are also much higher. A buyer can secure a conforming loan with a down payment of just 5% (or even 3% for special first-time programs) with the help of private mortgage insurance. Jumbo loans have no such insurance policies available and require a minimum down payment of 20% of the sale price of the home. Providing a down payment of 25% or more will make it easier to qualify.

Wondering if a jumbo loan is the right move? Reach out! I can help you find the right loan for your next move or investment.

Search for Homes @
http://www.islandhomelife.com/
If you would like more information on this call Neaulani 808-358-9700
Neaulani Kuamo'o-Peck (RA) RS-73536
Coldwell Banker Pacific Properties
No tricks, just the treat when your home successfully sells.
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Calling in the pros on HVAC repair


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Safe furnace workIf you're a homeowner, the internet can be a great source of comfort when it comes to tackling do-it-yourself maintenance. Yes, Google can show you the simple steps to replace a furnace filter, but most other HVAC repairs are not of the DIY variety. Here's what to watch out for and when to call in the professionals:

Unusual Noises
Modern, efficient heating and cooling systems should run almost silently. When you hear whistling, rattling, squealing, or knocking during operation, there's likely a problem. You can inspect the system yourself, but chances are you don't know much about the components inside your air conditioner or furnace. Rather than putting the safety of you and your family at risk, it's better to let an expert HVAC repair contractor take care of it.

Nasty Odors
When an air conditioning unit or heating system is working correctly, you shouldn't be able to smell it. If there is an unpleasant odor emitted, something is wrong. Your first step should be a filter replacement, but if the smell persists you likely have mold growing, a damaged air duct, or a clogged drainpipe. Each of these situations will require a thorough cleaning of the unit and the eye of an expert tech.

Improper Airflow
Clogs, blockages, and leaks can all lead to decreased airflow in your heating and cooling systems, causing them to run less efficiently and shortening their lifespan. Qualified HVAC repair technicians have the experience to quickly diagnose and address airflow issues.

Rising Energy Bills
Have you noticed that your energy bills keep going up every month? Unless you're experiencing a big swing in temperatures, increased energy usage means your unit is having to work harder to maintain your desired temperature. By keeping an eye on your utility bills, you can get a tech dispatched and get in front of a total breakdown and the headaches that come when your unit isn't running at all.

A note on hiring the right HVAC company
As with hiring any new contractor, take time to do your due diligence on HVAC service. Not all HVAC companies are the same, and you should never consider only one resource when determining the right one for you. Check credentials, licensing and insurance requirements in your region. Ask around for references and read reviews online. Finally, ask them for an estimate. Many HVAC repair companies will provide these at no cost. Get a quote from several different businesses before choosing one.

Search for Homes @
http://www.islandhomelife.com/
If you would like more information on this call Neaulani 808-358-9700
Neaulani Kuamo'o-Peck (RA) RS-73536
Coldwell Banker Pacific Properties
No tricks, just the treat when your home successfully sells.
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Inspections vs. Appraisals vs. AVMs

Appraisal after inspection
Inspections vs. Appraisals vs. AVMs
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Inspections, appraisals, and automated valuation models, while related, all have different functions but can be easily confused. Let's take a closer look.

Inspections: A property inspection is ordered by the buyer and is meant to be an unbiased look at the condition of the property. While not necessarily required by a lender, an inspection protects the buyer from purchasing a home that requires expensive repairs or otherwise doesn't live up to its list price. A property inspector will examine the condition of the property inside and out, running through a checklist of areas including, but not limited to, the roof, electrical panels, wiring, plumbing, appliances, doors and windows. If any issues pop up, the inspector makes note and provides the buyer with a report.

Many reported issues will need some attention but won't affect financing. If major repairs are needed however, the lender might want to have those issues addressed before they provide any funding.

Appraisals: Once the inspection has been completed and reviewed, the lender can order an appraisal. The appraisal will consider comparable homes in the area as well as other factors such as lot size, nearby schools and crime rates. The goal of the appraisal is to determine the true value of the property for the sake of the lender.

The key difference between an inspection and an appraisal is that an inspection aims to assess the physical condition of a home itself, while an appraisal solely determines the market value of the real estate.

AVMs: An automated valuation model is a digital evaluation of the value of a home. An AVM will quickly research the database of similar homes in the area and compare them with the value of the subject property. AVMs are often used to assess the value of a property portfolio, and have the advantage of saving time and money since no one physically visits the property. However, AVMs can't take into account the true condition of a property and often aren't enough to secure a conventional loan for a home buyer.
QUESTIONS? VISIT http://www.alohainvesting.com/
 

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Neaulani Kuamo'o-Peck (RA) RS 73536 CLS, CNAS RS 73536

Coldwell Banker Pacific Properties
RS 73536
808 358-9700


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Credit Scores Demystified

REAL ESTATE NEWS
Brought to you by Neaulani Kuamo'o-Peck (RA) RS 73536 CLS, CNAS
 
Credit Scores Demystified
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If you've made a resolution this year to get your credit on track, getting started can feel a bit daunting. After all, it can sometimes seem as if credit agencies want to keep you in the dark about how scores are calculated. Not to worry - with some diligence on your part and a little insight into the world of credit score-keeping, you can get back on track in 2020.

Paint your credit score on your wall for extra motivation


Credit scores follow an algorithm first developed by the data analytics company FICO years ago. For a while, credit scores weren't the primary force behind a credit decision but over time the impact of a credit score became more and more important. Most every loan program available today has a minimum credit score.

There are five characteristics of your credit history that make up your three-digit score: your payment history, account balances, the length of your credit history, the types of credit used and how often you've applied for new credit. Credit scores will improve much more quickly by paying attention to the two categories that have the greatest impact on a score: payment history and account balances.

Payment history accounts for 35 percent of the total score. When someone makes a payment more than 30 days past the due date, scores will fall. An occasional "late pay" won't do much damage to your score but continued payments made more than 30 days past due definitely will. Preventing late payments is a key to recovering your score.

Account balances compare outstanding loan balances with credit lines and make up 30 percent of your score. If a credit card has a $10,000 credit line and there is a $3,300 balance, scores will actually improve, as the ideal balance-to-limit is about one-third of the credit line. As the balance grows and approaches or exceeds the limit, scores will begin to fall.

The remaining three have relatively little impact. How long someone has used credit accounts for 15 percent of the score, but there's really nothing anyone can do to improve this area other than to wait. Types of credit and credit inquiries both make up 10 percent of the score. By concentrating on payment history and account balances, scores will improve significantly over the next few months.


Search for Homes @
http://www.islandhomelife.com/
If you would like more information on this call Neaulani 808-358-9700
Neaulani Kuamo'o-Peck (RA) RS-73536

Coldwell Banker Pacific Properties
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USDA Loans

USDA Loans: They're Not Just for Homes in the Boonies
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Countryside FieldHave you heard of USDA loans? If you're a low-to-moderate-income homebuyer who doesn't have a lot of money for a down payment and who needs lenient credit requirements, you (or your lender) are probably focused on FHA loans.

But if you haven't taken a look at USDA loans, you may be missing out on an incredible opportunity.

If you're saying to yourself, "But USDA loans are only for homes out in the sticks," that's understandable. It's true that the loans were designed to help buyers in rural areas. But "rural" is a broader term than you may realize.

On the USDA website, you can enter an address in the search bar and check if it's eligible, or you can drop a pin in a location to find out whether USDA financing is available in the area. Consider these interesting results: Frisco, TX, currently the fastest-growing city in the nation, is not eligible for a USDA loan, but Prosper, just to the north and being called, "The next Frisco," is eligible. The popular Valencia, CA, north of Los Angeles is not eligible, but areas of Santa Clarita, the city in which Valencia is located, are eligible. There's no harm in looking, and you might find a real gem in an up-and-coming area.
QUESTIONS? VISIT http://www.alohainvesting.com/
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Neaulani Kuamo'o-Peck (RA) RS 73536 CLS, CNAS RS 73536

Coldwell Banker Pacific Properties
RS 73536
808 358-9700

Neaulani@islandhomelife.com
http://www.alohainvesting.com/
Coldwell Banker and the Coldwell Banker Logo are registered service marks of Coldwell Banker Real Estate LLC. Coldwell Banker Pacific Properties is owned by a subsidiary of NRT LLC. If you have a brokerage relationship with another agency, this is not intended as a solicitation. 
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Remodeling Stats and Spending Trends

REAL ESTATE NEWS
Brought to you by Neaulani Kuamo'o-Peck (RA) RS 73536 CLS, CNAS
 
Remodeling Stats and Spending Trends to Inform Your Improvement Plans
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Thinking about remodeling? You're not alone. According to a report from the Harvard Joint Center for Housing Studies, home improvement spending in the U.S. is up more than 50% since 2010.

The study found that, "Spending on improvements and repairs to the US housing stock continued on an upward trend in 2017, setting a new high of $424 billion. This represents a 10% increase from 2015 and more than 50% gain from the low in 2010." According to their analysis, 22 million homeowners across the country completed at least one home improvement project in 2017.

Floor installation

"The report[…] attributed part of the increase to a shortage of new construction and a reliance on aging housing stock that requires upkeep and repair," said the New York Times. "Other factors include higher housing prices that have increased the available equity for home improvement loans, and a growing population of older homeowners who are financially equipped to pay for renovations."

The primary "spenders" fall into three main categories: Homeowners using surging equity to make improvements, homeowners playing catch-up on deferred maintenance and updates, and rental property owners.

The average expenditure on home improvement was rather modest; 40% of participants reported spending less than $2,500, and almost 75% spent less than $10,000.

Most common improvements

The most common project in 2017 was adding or replacing flooring, with 5.2 million homeowners, or 7%, upgrading their floors. The next most common projects were:

  • Adding or replacing plumbing fixtures
  • Built-in dishwashers or garbage disposals
  • New windows or doors
  • New water heaters
  • Top Listor Team Over all company 2015,2016,2017
  • Top Listor Team in units &volume 2013,2014,2015,2016,2017
  • Top Producer Team Over all company 2016
  • Top Producer Team units&volume2013,2014,2015,2016
  • Top Salesperson Team in units & Volume 2013
  • Top 1% NRT Agent Team with over 52,000 salespeople Nationwide
  • Top 100 Hawaii Realtors
  • Featured in HGTV's House Hunters & Hawaii News Now Real Estate of Mind 
  • Hawaii Business Magazine Most Transactions 2014,2015, 2017
  • “HELPING YOU BUILD WEALTH THROUGH REAL ESTATE”
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Cleaning Tips & Tricks

Floor Cleaning Tips & Tricks
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Regardless of how tidy you are, your floors, rugs, and carpets get dirty. Between the dirt you track in on your shoes, the accidental spills, and the inevitable accumulation of dust, your floors can get quite grimy. Here are a few cleaning tips and tricks for all types of flooring.

Natural Stone Floors
One of the most important rules when it comes to cleaning natural stone, is to steer clear of acidic products like vinegar, ammonia, or bleach, as they can ruin the stone. Your best bet is to use a pH-neutral cleaner that won’t react with the minerals in your stone floor.

Tile Floors
Tile is easy to clean. Simply combine ¼ cup of vinegar and one drop of dish soap in a spray bottle. Fill the rest with water and mix well. Spritz the mixture onto your tile surface and wipe it down with a microfiber cloth or mop. Steaming the tiles and grout will provide a deep cleaning.

Cleaning Supplies

Carpets
Unlike other flooring surfaces, carpets have their own set of rules. For a deep clean, it’s best to steam clean your carpets. For regular cleaning, using a vacuum should suffice.

Hardwood Floors
Wood floors need a lot of attention. Start by determining whether your floor is sealed or not. If it’s unsealed, avoid using water and instead try mineral oil and periodic coats of wax. If the floor is sealed, a simple mix of hot water and soap is a safe bet.

Linoleum
Start by sweeping or vacuuming the floor to get rid of dust, hair, and dirt. Then add about six drops of mild detergent or dish soap to a gallon of warm or hot water. Dampen a mop with the mixture and use it to clean the floor in sections. Avoid getting the mop too wet, and make sure to dry the floors with a towel when you’re done. Standing water can damage linoleum.
QUESTIONS? VISIT http://www.alohainvesting.com/
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Neaulani Kuamo'o-Peck (RA) RS 73536 CLS, CNAS RS 73536

Coldwell Banker Pacific Properties
RS 73536
808 358-9700

Neaulani@islandhomelife.com
http://www.alohainvesting.com/
Coldwell Banker and the Coldwell Banker Logo are registered service marks of Coldwell Banker Real Estate LLC. Coldwell Banker Pacific Properties is owned by a subsidiary of NRT LLC. If you have a brokerage relationship with another agency, this is not intended as a solicitation.
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Investment Property

Why an Investment Property Should Be Your First Real Estate Purchase
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For Rent
Not ready to buy a home for yourself but want to take advantage of great market conditions? Consider buying an investment property! It's a trend that's taking over real estate, as savvy investors look to put their money in an appreciating asset. Here are five reasons to consider it. 

1. Rates are crazy low. Lower rates mean more affordable lending, or more for your money if you choose to reach higher.

2. Because it will appreciate. According to CoreLogic, "The overall home price index (HPI) has increased on a year-over-year basis every month for seven years." The long-term price appreciation of real estate can provide one of the safest investments out there.

3. Because passive income is good. Yes, it's nice to know there will likely be appreciation over time, but the real key to success with investment properties is passive income.

"The best part about rental properties is that they provide a stable income," said Mashvisor. "What would be better than having a check sent to you every month? In order to have positive cash flow, you have to make sure you invest in a profitable rental property."

4. To turn it into a short-term rental. The short-term rental market has opened up a new world of opportunity for investors. By buying in the right location—by the beach, near a ski resort, or in close proximity to a popular annual event like Coachella, you have the potential of making a significant return in a short period of time. Just be sure to check the local laws, as lots of cities have been cracking down on Airbnb and other services.

5. Because it can help you buy the home of your dreams down the line. "Buying an investment property before your first home does not imply that you won't have the funds to purchase your actual home at some point," said Mashvisor. "In fact, investment properties that have been purchased wisely and have grown in value can offer you a sizeable amount of wealth and equity."



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Neaulani Kuamo'o-Peck (RA) RS 73536 CLS, CNAS RS 73536

Coldwell Banker Pacific Properties
RS 73536
808 358-9700

Neaulani@islandhomelife.com
http://www.alohainvesting.com/
Coldwell Banker and the Coldwell Banker Logo are registered service marks of Coldwell Banker Real Estate LLC. Coldwell Banker Pacific Properties is owned by a subsidiary of NRT LLC. If you have a brokerage relationship with another agency, this is not intended as a solicitation. 

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Kitchen Design Trends Inspired by Restaurant Kitchens

6 Kitchen Design Trends Inspired by Restaurant Kitchens
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Not all kitchen design trends stand the test of time, but a restaurant kitchen is meant to be as functional as possible for as long as possible. Taking a few cues from restaurant kitchens can help you create a residential kitchen that you'll be sure to love for years to come!

Restaurant Kitchen

1. Forget the Island
A kitchen island allows for lots of prep space and storage but can also make even a large space seem cramped and crowded. A work table in place of the kitchen island still provides plenty of room to work, offers shelving underneath for storage, and can be moved easily when not in use.

2. Consider a Stainless Steel Backsplash
Stainless steel is durable, doesn't absorb microbes, and is fire-resistant, which is why it's long been a popular material for commercial kitchen backsplashes. It's also easy to clean and coordinates with most kitchen styles.

3. Hang Utensil Rods
Rarely do restaurant kitchens keep utensils in drawers, as this is a surefire way to create a cluttered, jumbled mess. A utensil rod or two will keep all your kitchen tools organized, in plain sight, and close at hand.

4. Install a Magnetic Knife Strip
Much like utensil rods, many commercial kitchens include magnetic strips along walls to hold chefs' knives. Storing knives on a magnetic wall strip reduces the risk of cutting yourself while rooting around in a drawer and also allows you to easily see each knife blade type and size. A magnetic knife strip also eliminates the need for a bulky knife block on the countertop.

5. Use Wire Shelving in Your Pantry
Wire shelving allows for air circulation around your stored foodstuffs, reducing damage from heat and humidity. Wire shelves also don't need cleaning as often as standard wood shelves.

6. Install an Open Shelf Over the Stovetop
Many commercial kitchens feature an open shelf or two over the stovetop, for holding pots and pans, spices, timers, and even a recipe or prep instructions. Consider asking your kitchen contractor about an open shelf over your new stovetop, for added convenience and to break up the look of a bare wall behind the stove.
QUESTIONS? VISIT http://www.alohainvesting.com/
 
personal photo
Neaulani Kuamo'o-Peck (RA) RS 73536 CLS, CNAS RS 73536

Coldwell Banker Pacific Properties
RS 73536
808 358-9700

Neaulani@islandhomelife.com
http://www.alohainvesting.com/
Coldwell Banker and the Coldwell Banker Logo are registered service marks of Coldwell Banker Real Estate LLC. Coldwell Banker Pacific Properties is owned by a subsidiary of NRT LLC. If you have a brokerage relationship with another agency, this is not intended as a solicitation.
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Hula and Cultural


Hula and Cultural Immersion Program
Are you planning a trip to Hawaii?  Have you heard of the Hula?  Would experiencing the hula, music and Hawaiian culture being taught by a native Hawaiian Kumu add interest and value to your trip?
Join me for a 7,14 or 28 day immersion program into the authentic life philosophy of the hula and the Hawaiian culture.
The live-in immersion program is the way students were traditionally taught back in the time of our ancestors.  Students, known as Haumana, were removed from their homes and went to live with the kumu where the halau - school - became their life. 
I am a Kumuhula - Hula Teacher here on the island of Oahu.  I’ve been a kumu for over 40 years and have taught many, many haumana (students) both here in Hawaii and in California.  My goal is to perpetuate the hula, music and Hawaiian culture by sharing all of it with as many people as I can for as long as I can.  My hula comes down to me from my family lineage with my mom being my first kumu.  Through her teaching and my family line, I’ve learned to teach the spirit of the hula right along with the technical aspects.
Imagine seeing all the magic of the island and learning the culture from a Kanaka Maoli - Indigenous Person.  Not only will you be able to dance the hula, you will have the deeper knowledge and spiritual connection that is the hula.
During your time here, I will also teach you the ukulele and hawaiian songs.  And I’ll give you a taste of the Hawaiian language as well.  All this and a Hawaiian vacation too.  What more could you ask for?
PROGRAM DETAILS:
The is a “live-in residence” immersion at my house with myself and my husband in a workshop program environment.  I am the Kumu and my husband is my supporter and technical advisor.
The class sessions and immersion living allows you free time on your own to enjoy the sights and sounds of the island while you learn the hula and culture.
Students will have shared room accommodations with another like-minded student depending on the number of student sign-ins.  Kitchen, laundry facilities and living areas are provided.  Our home is a cozy 2 story townhouse with the kitchen, living and dining room and half bath downstairs and 3 bedrooms and full bathroom upstairs.
Everyone’s stay in my house will be as a member of my ‘ohana = family, and are requested to participate in shared cooking, light house-keeping and taking care of their own laundry needs. 
Students will provide their own food and transportation.  Fortunately, on Oahu, we have an excellent bus transportation system that goes all over the island for those of you who don’t drive.  There are also all the major car rentals agencies where you can pick up your car at the airport.  There are taxis at the airport as well.  Our townhouse complex is just 20 minutes from the airport. 
We live in the country with all the conveniences of the city.  The major stores like Costco, Ross, Target, Walmart and Safeway are here along with Oahu’s newest mall - Ka Makana Ali’i.  There are also 2 large movie theaters and all kinds of restaurants here from fast food like McDonald’s to great dining like Outback Steakhouse, Cheesecake Factory and GyuTaku Japanese bar b que.  We also have a beautiful resort area just minutes from our home.  Disney’s Aulani hotel is there along with the Four Seasons hotel.  There are 4 beautiful, sandy lagoons there and it’s not unusual to see wedding couples taking pictures on these lagoons.  World famous Makaha beach is just a 40 minute drive up the highway.           
On Wednesdays and Sundays, the Farmers Market comes to the mall.
Because Oahu is the main island in the Hawaiian chain, there’s so much to do that you’ll actually want to be very selective with the sights and activities you would like to experience.  I’ll be happy to send you suggestions, just let me know.
Tuition and Accommodation Fees:
28 days = $2,600
14 days = $1,500
7 days = $    800
https://kumuhulamana.com/

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