Latest Real Estate Market Updates

  • Wealthy Chinese Seek Luxury Homes in LA

Wealthy Chinese Seek Luxury Homes in LA

Wealthy Chinese Seek Luxury Homes in LA

Wealthy Chinese homebuyers are taking their riches outside of China and putting their money in luxury homes in the Los Angeles area. These homes that the wealthy Chinese are buying are considered a steal in comparison to China’s prices.

The influx of foreign homebuyers is driving up median home prices. In some areas, prices have gone up over 30 percent in comparison to peak highs in the 2007 boom.

Homes are reaching average prices of $1.3 million. This doesn’t seem like a heavy price to pay for the wealthy Chinese. These homeowners are seeking large property to host their relatives for long vacation stays.

Wealthy Chinese make up 12 percent of all United States home purchases by foreign citizens last year. That’s a seven percent increase from 2007. Half of these buyers purchased homes in California. What is more shocking is that more than two thirds of these buyers paid cash.

A Huron Report (a publishing firm in Shanghai) says that over 60 percent of wealthy Chinese plan to leave the country – even if it is part time. The most desired destination is the United States.

Chinese consumers are less certain in the market than here in the United States. With things seeming more stable, many wealthy Chinese seek luxury estates, investments, and award-winning schools.

This heavy demand for homes is boosting housing prices at an extremely fast rate – property may become much more expensive as time goes on. With demand at a record high, inventory is growing increasingly more valuable.

Wealthy Chinese are seeking homes with two master bedrooms and bathrooms so relatives can enjoy their extended visits. Some of the priciest models have detached studio apartments for visitors. It’s like having a visitor while still maintaining space and independence.

The downside is that many of these homes remain vacant for most of the year. Wealthy Chinese buyers feel they can afford the home, purchase it because it is in a good neighborhood, and then hardly spend time living in it. Many of these homeowners do not rent out the property in the hopes that they will split the time between China and the U.S.. That isn’t always the case for the many homeowners who have to work in China to pay for their latest purchases.

Fore more information check out this L.A. Times Article.

  • Renting Out All or Part of Luxury Homes

Renting Out All or Part of Luxury Homes

  • April 2nd, 2014

Renting Out All or Part of Luxury Homes
Living alone is something many people try to avoid. Renting out property or sharing a home is pretty common. Apparently, more affluent homeowners feel the need to fill their large living quarters as well.

Luxury homeowners are renting out all or part of their homes. Their reason? They want someone to help pay the mortgage or to have someone around to watch their pets.

Five percent of responders, in a study conducted by Demand Institute of over 10,000 homeowners and renters nationwide, said they live with an adult that is not related to them. Seven percent of those that responded that they live with an unrelated adult are considered to be in the most affluent markets.

Renting out all or part of a luxury home is an appealing idea to homeowners. 41 percent of households in top-tier markets report that they spend at least 30 percent (or more!) of their incomes on housing. That is a lot of money going toward a home – that leaves 70 percent (max) of a homeowner’s income to go toward other bills. Think about all the electricity and gas that goes with a large home like that. Louise Keely, the chief research office of Demand Institute, says that luxury homeowners are definitely feeling their housing costs in their pockets.

Renting out is also beneficial because rental prices are relatively high in comparison to home prices.

The downside to living with someone? The decision to put that home up for sale. Selling one’s home can be a tough decision on it’s own – but when you share with someone, it becomes a lot more complicated. These unrelated adults can often be friends of the owner. Tenants that are friends make the decision to sell become a fragile situation. This means the tenant that the homeowner was renting out to will be forced to move. That could definitely put constrains on a friendship.

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  • Moorpark Homes For Sale: 4261 Scholartree Ct, Moorpark Ca

Moorpark Homes For Sale: 4261 Scholartree Ct, Moorpark Ca

  • February 15th, 2014

Moorpark homes for sale listed at $775,000
For prospective homebuyers looking for homes in Moorpark, SG & Associates is proud to present our latest listing of 4261 Scholartree Ct, Moorpark CA 93021.  Tucked away in the beautiful foothills of Moorpark California is the community of Tuscana at Serenata. It is here, just beyond the gated entrance, you will find the newest Moorpark Homes for sale.

4261 Scholartree Ct in Moorpark offers a wide variety of elements to homebuyers looking for Moorpark homes for sale. This spacious two story Mediterranean style home boasts 5 bedrooms, 4 bath and over 3,100 square feet of comfortable living space.

Other fine features include a spacious kitchen with brand new stainless steal appliances and an oversized walk in pantry.  An abundance of storage and a large center island complete this gorgeous kitchen.

The dine-in breakfast nook opens to the family room with vaulted ceilings built-in entertainment center and cozy fireplace, making this home perfect hosting  family and guests.

Direct access to the backyard makes for convenient outdoor entertainment and relaxation.  Added height to the stone wall provide peace and privacy in this great backyard.

Watch our video for this Moopark Home For Sale

If you have any questions about 4261 Scholartree Ct, Moorpark CA 93021, please contact Galen Callahan by phone at (805) 267-95217 or by email at SG & Associates are ready to assist you in your search for Moorpark homes for sale, or serve you in selling your current home. For more information about SG & Associate’s services or the Calabasas area, visit our website at

  • Top Home Improvements To Get Ready To Sell

Top Home Improvements To Get Ready To Sell

  • January 15th, 2014

Top 4 Home Improvements
In an effort to sell their homes, many people turn to investing in home improvements. To cut down their budgets many people take on the home improvements themselves. However, most of the time they don’t realize what a huge undertaking these projects can be. Below, I’ve consolidated a list of home improvement projects that will add value of your home and be easier on your life.
Organize Small Spaces: One of the fastest home improvement projects is to take on organizing a small area. Choose a closet or bathroom and organize your belongings. If you are showing your house, the more organized the closets are the more people will like them. Bathrooms can often get unruly. Simplify the amount of belongs that you have in there and focus your belongings on functionality and style.
Throw Out the Unused: Many times areas get cluttered by unused and unwanted items. Be sure the periodically go through your belongings and throw out unused items. It will make you feel better and look better to potential home buyers.
Invest in Storage Systems: This is a very affordable way to to increase the value of your home. How many houses on the market have a completely organized garage storage system? Potential buyers will love it! Shelving, cabinets, and overhead storage provide storage that is off the floor and easy to use.

Finish Off with Flooring: It’s amazing what a difference flooring can make. Many flooring systems are hard to install and costly. Consider epoxy floor coatings in an unfinished basement or garage. They can be installed in 1-2 days and are great way to finish off a room.

No matter what home improvement project you decided to take on, make sure that it fits your budget and your time schedule.
Major D. Clutter is a garage storage and organization company serving homeowners in Ventura County. For more tips, visit their corporate blog at

  • Bitcoins in Real Estate

Bitcoins in Real Estate

  • December 24th, 2013

Bitcoins in Real Estate
Bitcoins—an online, digital currency that was introduced in 2009 could be a growing trend. The government or a central bank does not back the currency.
The use of bitcoins could be making headway in the unlikely place of real estate transactions. Home seller, Phillipp Preuss, has listed his home using bitcoins. He is one of the first sellers testing the currency with his home on the market.

The home is located in the Hamptons and Preuss is asking for $799,000. It is a ranch-style home with four bedrooms. The listing originally went up in October, but the seller is now willing to accept the equivalent home value in bitcoins as a new approach to selling his home.

Not only is Preuss willing to accept bitcoins, but he is also willing to accept a combination of cash and bitcoins. He says, “There’s room for more than one currency.”

Earlier last week, former casino owner Jack Sommer said he was accepting bitcoins for his $7.85 million Las Vegas property.

The fluctuation of bitcoins has posed some confusion. The prices change daily, and have ranged from $13 to $1,200 between January and November. The Wall Street Journal says that the bitcoin price would probably be determined by the average exchange rate on the day of closing.

Preuss’s strategy is to expand his amount potential customers. He says that “there might be international buyers, or a younger computer whiz who came into a little bit of coin overnight.”

Interestingly, without a bank transaction, bitcoin transactions can have fewer fees.

With bitcoins being fairly new, Preuss says his real estate broker was not sure what the currency was. But it is another option. And people like to have options.

A computing process that is known as “mining” creates bitcoin. It can be traded online through unregulated Internet exchanges.

Breaking Community News

  • How Wealthy Is The Area of Westlake Village CA?

How Wealthy Is The Area of Westlake Village CA?

  • December 21st, 2013

What is the median income for Westlake Village CA?
Recently the U.S Census Bureau released the median household income across the nation.

An interactive map that measures income trends across neighborhoods allows our visitors to explore differences in income down to the county and zip code. The areas in the nation currently doing the best economically are the metropolitan areas outside of America’s biggest cities. As you can see Westlake Village, Thousand Oaks and Calabasas definitely fall in that category. This is an important factor on home values and the decision to invest in Westlake Village Real Estate.


If you have any questions about Westlake Village Real Estate, please contact Galen Callahan by phone at (805) 267-95217 or by email at SG & Associates are ready to assist you in your search for the perfect Westlake Village home, or serve you in selling your current home. For more information about SG & Associate’s services or the Westlake Village area, visit our website at

  • Elevators – The Next Luxury Home Necessity

Elevators – The Next Luxury Home Necessity

  • December 12th, 2013

Elevators – The Next Luxury Home Necessity
Looking for the next luxury home amenity? Elevators are becoming more and more popular in newer homes.
Baby boomers  are looking to downsize. They are being tempted with elevators. This luxury feature offers convenience, as well as hope for an easier future as they age.

The U.S. population is aging.  The cost of installing a lift is decreasing. These two factors  really push elevators’ popularity amongst luxury homebuyers. It used to cost nearly $60,000 twenty years ago to install an elevator. Now it’s about $25,000 to install an elevator.

Single-story ranches were used to target the over-55 demographic. Now, elevators are becoming more commonplace, especially in suburban mansions.

Although the National Association of Elevator Contractors did not have figures, local industry personnel have observed and agreed that the demand for lifts have increased.

In the Artisan Townhouse development, 13 of the 27 completed homes have elevators. There is one unsold property that doesn’t have an elevator. Scott Neifel, sales manager of Philadelphia-based Plumer & Associates Inc. Realtors, says that the property probably would have sold if it had one.

Finding an elevator in a home used to be like finding a piece of gold. Now, elevators are becoming expected – especially in homes that are four stories or more.

It offers a unique feature that acts as a “glorified dumbwaiter” for transporting home necessities like groceries around the different floors. The problem is, not everyone is interested in them.

Some people fear that elevators are just another thing waiting to break. Fixing an elevator can be an expensive task.  Doing your homework can help prevent that issue. A good product tends to have fewer problems.

Decide how much you would really use an elevator. Some people would rather have the extra closet space. Matt Pincus, owner of the West Chester-based Pincus Elevator Co., says, “At a certain price range, an elevator is part of the deal.”

Celebrities also love elevators. Check out this article on Alan Jackson’s home elevator.

  • Agoura Hills ranks in Safest Cities in CA

Agoura Hills ranks in Safest Cities in CA

  • November 27th, 2013

Agoura Hills Ranks in Safest Cities in CA
Agoura Hills keeps citizens busy with community activities
One of the number one things at the top of a homebuyers’s list is safety. If you are moving you find yourself checking if it is a “safe neighborhood.” And if you are a family, you might even be asking if it is one of the safest.

Well guess what?  Moorpark, Calabasas, Agoura Hills, and Thousand Oaks all made the 50 Safest Cities in California list.  It should be of no surprise that Agoura Hills made 14th on this list.

Surrounded by five colleges and universities, Agoura Hills offers a wide variety of affordable programs. These programs help keep the youth busy with extra curricular activities.

SafeWise says “From pee-wee yoga, fencing, Kindermusic, and senior socials, Agoura Hills makes every effort….” And that effort certainly shows. The FBI’s Crime Report states that authorities were made aware of only three robberies in 2011.

Agoura Hills offers a luxurious life style perfect for a family. The community is perfect for letting kids develop into strong citizens and for adults to enjoy just as many amenities.

A state-of-the-art civic center and a recreation magazine gives you a wonderful view of the affluent city and will encourage you to find out exactly why Agoura Hills is so wonderful.

Moorpark ranked 7 on the list. Calabasas followed at 13 and Thousand Oaks at 33.

In case you missed it, Thousand Oaks ranked fourth in the FBI’s list of Safest Cities in America. Make sure to check out our previous blog post on the list of Safest Cities in America.

The neighborhoods’ data was examined from the most recent FBI Crime in the U.S. Report. It   was also compared with SafeWise’s own research. Each city had to have 20,000 residents or more as of 2011 to be considered in the California list.

  • Holiday Homes Tour

Holiday Homes Tour

  • November 18th, 2013

22nd Annual Holiday Homes Tour
The 22nd annual Holiday Homes Tour hosted by the Cancer Support Community for the Valley, Ventura, and Santa Barbara will be held from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on December 7th and December 8th.

The tour includes five homes this year that have been elaborately decorated. This is a great opportunity to get into the holiday spirit. Find inspirational decorative ideas while helping out a great local cause.

The gorgeous houses offer a range of architectural styles, settings and interior décors and a view of how others live.

A past tour included Arleen Scavone’s home, a champion from the show “The Cupcake Wars.”

This year’s Holiday Homes Tour includes homes in the Westlake Village, Thousand Oaks, and Agoura Hills areas. The seasonal themes include French Country Christmas, Believe in the Magic of the Season, a Christmas Spectacular, and Oak Tree Manor.

This self-guided tour is one of the group’s biggest fundraisers. The proceeds provide cancer support and education that is free of charge to local cancer patients and their families.

While the Holiday Homes Tour is going on, the Cancer Support Community will also have its annual Holiday Boutique from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the State Farm / Baxter facility – One Baxter Way in Westlake Village.

Parts of the proceeds from the boutique benefit the organization. The boutique is free to the public and doesn’t require the purchase of the Holiday Homes Tour tickets.

Tickets for the tour are $30 in advance or $35 at the door. You can purchase tickets by calling (888) 557-3177 or by going to their website.

  • Solar Center – Go Solar in Agoura Hills

Solar Center – Go Solar in Agoura Hills

  • November 15th, 2013

Solar Center – Go Solar in Agoura Hills
Solar Center offers a zero out of pocket deal to Agoura Hills

Who isn’t looking to cut back their electric bills these days? The reality is, electricity can be pricy. It isn’t environmentally friendly. And it doesn’t help your home value. It’s all about Solar Center these days.

The benefits of solar energy are becoming more and more clear, and Solar Center is so confident in solar power, that there is a zero out of pocket Agoura Hills solar energy program.

The push to go solar has been seen in masses from advertisers. Literally, if you look closely, you can see these advertisements just about anywhere.

The problem about all these advertisements is that they kind of push people away. Solar Center is trying to separate themselves from the notion of bombarding advertisements and unclear incentive programs and be straightforward and honest.

Their zero out of pocket Agoura Hills program is designed to take advantage of all the lucrative tax rebates and money saving incentives offered to make going solar the most obvious choice. Thanks Washington and Sacramento!

Summer months can be pretty warm in Southern California, as most residents know. The sun warms everything up and is perfect for sunbathing in. But it can be a real damper when the electric bill comes in and it has skyrocketed because the AC is on full blast.

Switching to solar energy helps reduce the cost of using your AC. Plus it allows you to feel less guilty about turning it and leaving it on. Solar Center believes in creating energy independence and in turn saving the consumer money.

They serve more than just Agoura Hills too. They easily reach all of Southern California and serve all of California.

Solar Center prides themselves on their use of high quality equipment for top-notch results. They believe their models are the best and that they perform the best.

To learn more about their program, visit their website or call (877) 20-SOLAR.