Posted by Rick Griffin on Feb 12, 2021 4:40:55 PM

bl2021 Housing Market Update
A contingent of PSAR members recently gathered in a Zoom meeting for the purpose of gleaning a look into the future. It was provided via the “2021 Housing Market Outlook,” a presentation from Oscar Wei of the California Association of REALTORS® (C.A.R.).

Oscar Wei CAR photo

Wei is the Senior Economist and the Director of Research for C.A.R. In his capacity, he analyzes housing market conditions, consumer behavior, and public policy issues, using transactional data and survey research studies conducted by C.A.R. He has managerial responsibility for data mining and analyzing housing market statistics that are released to the public on a periodic basis.

Wei informed PSAR members they should expect the recovering economy to worsen before recovering and the pandemic will rage on during the recovery period. Wei said housing demand will remain robust as mortgage rates stay near record lows.

In 2021, Wei concludes that the tight housing supply will continue to impact the market and prices will rise in the first half of the year. He expects the rate of price increases will slow in the second half of the year.

Wei observed that the housing market is weathering the economic downturn better than it did during the Great Recession that began thirteen years ago. He stated this is so because most buyers who have purchased in recent years are more invested in their purchase and have stronger financial underpinnings than homebuyers who purchased prior to the housing market collapsed of 2007.

The year 2020 saw a ten-year high in the share of first-time buyers. Record-low interest rates have been fueling the market and many first-time buyers took advantage of cheaper costs of borrowing during this year’s home buying season.

Wei state that during the 2020 summer, two of five homes sold were to first-home buyers. He opined that this spike may have been due to fewer homeowners (i.e. repeat buyers) willing to sell and move during the pandemic.

This trend will likely taper off in 2021, as the momentum of first-time buyer demand will lessen as tight supply continues to drive up home prices.

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Wei described what the COVID-19 “new normal” in American looks like.

-- Owning a home has become more valued. A home is now more than just a livable shelter; it is a place in which to work due to the accommodations required by Covid guidelines. Those who work from home may need a bigger house if home office space is needed.

-- Remote working also means changing the “where” for homebuying. According to Zillow and the Harris Poll, three-quarters of those who work from home because of the coronavirus say they want to continue to work at home after Covid restrictions are lifted. Two-thirds say they would consider moving to a different house if given that option. Half of remote workers polled stated if they could continue to work at home, they would purchase homes farther from their company office, which would open up the secondary city real estate market

-- Retail and office spaces could help increase housing supply, states Wei, who cited Loopnet, UBS and Global Analytics. Due to the Covid impact, the U.S. retail industry appears to stand to lose 11 percent to 17 percent of its total store count by 2025. In the next five years, 100,000 retail stores will close nationwide, and the number of closed stores could reach 150,000. Within two years, 30 percent of the employee populace will work from home multiple days per week. Office space demand may decline as a result. Vacant retail and office space could be converted into residential units, helping to alleviate the shortage of available housing.

Wei;s outlook for the 2021 California housing market is as follows: Single-family home resales will total 425,500 units, a year-over-year increase of 3.3 percent; the median price of a single-family home in California will reach $688,400, an increase of 4.4 percent from 2020; a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage will average 3.1 percent; the housing affordability index will be 31 percent. This index measures the percentage of home buyers who can afford to pay the $688,400 average price for an existing, median-priced, single-family home in the state.

Lower mortgage payments and stronger household finances will mean fewer defaults in 2021. Compared to those who purchased before the Great Recession, homebuyers in recent years have higher down-payments, fewer risky loans, lower borrowing costs and higher household income.

California’s unemployment rate will remain around 9 percent throughout 2021, and the population will grow from 40.1 million in 2020 to 40.3 million in 2021, a increase of 0.4 percent. The nationwide unemployment rate will be 7.1 percent in 2021, compared to 8.8 percent in 2020. Real Disposable Income will decrease by 3.5 percent in 2021, compared to a 6.3 percent increase in 2020.

Wei also commented on San Diego County market activity in 2020:

-- Most cities saw an increase in the number of home sales.

-- Homes in all local cities, except Coronado, sold above asking price in December 2020, which was not the case in December 2019.

-- Record low interest rates and tight supply pushed up local home prices.

-- Nearly all cities experienced at least double-digit gains in median home prices.

-- Supply in 2020 continued to worsen in San Diego.

Wei clarified that C.A.R.’s 2021 housing forecast is based on several key operating assumptions, including: COVID-19 vaccines will be readily available during the first half of the year, dampening a COVID surge; Gross Domestic Product (GDP) will grow at a rate of 4.2 percent in 2021 (in comparison, GDP decreased an estimated 3.6 percent in 2020, compared to 2019); household income will grow by 3.3 percent in 2021; interest rates will average 3.1 percent in 2021; Housing inventory levels will remain unchanged from 2020; Foreclosures will comprise only 8 percent of sales.

Wei also contributes frequently to C.A.R.’s market analysis articles, Housing Matters Podcast and Housing Perspective. He has written about housing supply, distressed sales, housing tax policy, housing affordability, and many other topics relevant to the real estate industry.

Topics: Announcements


Posted by Ditas Yamane on Feb 10, 2021 4:43:46 PM

blogBanner - REAL AWARDS Graphic-1

Congratulations the PSAR REALTOR® members who are expected to be honored a PSAR 2020 Real Estate Achievement and Leadership (R.E.A.L.) award.

The PSAR R.E.A.L. Awards program recognizes the top 10 percent PSAR producing agents and brokers in San Diego County who belong to PSAR and who achieved excellence through units or volume production and industry leadership in 2020.

PSAR members are being automatically recognized for a R.E.A.L Award based on CRMLS data on units or sales volume for residential sales that closed in San Diego in 2020.

However, if agents have not received an email from PSAR about the R.E.A.L Awards, and if agents believe they are deserving of recognition, then be advised that the deadline to contact PSAR with your question is midnight, Friday, February 12th.  After reviewing the awards criteria below and your 2020 production qualifies you for an award, please submit your production HERE.

Also, if you did not receive an invitation to receive an award, or if you want submit a new application or to appeal for changes in your award, the deadline to submit your production is midnight, Friday, February 12th and can be done so HERE.

The CRMLS data isn’t perfect. This is not a perfect system. You or your team may have been missed. If you believe you were missed, then please let us know immediately. Listings entered into other MLS systems that share data with CRMLS may be included if transactional proof is provided.  Please see if you qualify using the qualifications below before you submit your production

Both individuals and teams can qualify for a R.E.A.L. Award according to the following categories:

Top 1%, over 30 sides or more than $27,064,246 in volume;
Top 3%, over 18 sides or $14,750,000 in volume;
Top 5%, over 14 sides or $10,834,000 in volume;
Top 10%, over 9 sides or $6,700,900 in volume.

If an agent is supported by a team, the sales data will not reflect that. Only the lead agent will be recognized. Production credit was given only to the primary agent as shown in the CRMLS.

There is an option for a team award instead of an individual award and more information can be found at https://info.psar.org/real-awards.

Percentage rankings include all agents who belong to associations located in San Diego County and production from agents who are members of organizations outside San Diego County, but who listed in the County.

Interested non-members also are invited to join PSAR and apply. Agents from other associations may join PSAR to apply. There are no fees for members to apply. To be recognized, an agent must also be a member in good standing with the National Association of REALTORS®.

Team awards will be presented to teams in the same categories as individuals. Independent sales agents on a team can apply together for a 1%, 3%, 5% or 10% award and receive an award as a team. Award recipients cannot receive both an individual and a team award.

More details about qualifications for a R.E.A.L. Award can be found here, https://info.psar.org/realawards.

Names of recipients are scheduled to appear in a full-page ad to be published later this month in The San Diego Union-Tribune newspaper.

For additional questions, contact Kevin McElroy at PSAR, (619) 271-5898, or Kevin@psar.org.


PSAR's Mission is to empower Realtors to flourish while being accountable to each other,
our clients, and our community.

Since 1928, the Pacific Southwest Association of REALTORS® has played a significant role in shaping the history, growth and development of the Real Estate industry in San Diego County.
Workshops are open to all REALTORS® and Affiliated Members. This class is free of charge.

Topics: Announcements, Events, Leadership


Posted by Rick Griffin on Feb 5, 2021 4:27:22 PM

We all know that 2020 was a unique and daunting year, led by the world-wide pandemic that touched people and businesses in a myriad of ways. Society as well experienced various forms of upheaval whose impacts are yet to be determined.

The real estate industry was not immune to the influences of 2020, facing its own set of challenges. Fortunately for the membership of PSAR, it was Robert Cromer’s year to serve as PSAR President.

Throughout 2020, Robert maintained a steady hand at the wheel as leader of our association. He brought a measured tone, demonstrated authenticity and inspired teamwork among the PSAR Board of Directors.

2020 PSAR President, Recognized

Recently, several elected officials have recognized Robert for his outstanding leadership and resilient make up while leading PSAR as board President.

Earlier this week, Robert received a certificate of appreciation from San Diego County Supervisor, District 1, Nora Vargas.

Robert has also drawn noteworthy praise for his recent comment posted on a National Real Estate Masterminds Facebook page. His response to a question about the value of association participation was inciteful and he used great metaphors to help make his point.


In his own words, Robert said the following:

I was on a National Real Estate Masterminds page and someone posted today. “What is the big difference between being a Real Estate Agent and a REALTOR®?” You can imagine some of the negative responses. One person wrote “$800.” Others said “REALTORS® subscribe to a code of ethics.”

Here was my answer: Not being a Realtor is like showing up to a beautifully hosted party at a home without bringing the host a bottle of wine or side dish. Then you eat several plates of food, drink beverages and enjoy everyone’s company without contributing. A person can do that, but it kind of sucks for the host and those who contributed (provided food, cleaned the home before, set up tables, hired the caterer, broke everything down, took the trash out, cleaned up after you, etc.).

NAR and CAR (California) spend millions of dollars fighting for personal property rights and home-ownership, lobbying against laws that would restrict one of the greatest ways to provide security for millions of families and change one’s socioeconomic status-- being a home owner. They have been doing this for many years, before any of us were REALTORS® and when we were just kids.

Now take it one step further and imagine them as your parents, who have always looked after you and your friends. In states that were shut down, they lobbied Congress to make us essential workers, so we could feed our children and so the states’ economies did not fold like bad poker hands. They also made sure we were included in the stimulus package and PPP loans. There are thousands of more examples that smarter people than I on this page can add. Don’t show up to the party without being a contributor. You wouldn’t do that to your parents, would you?


Rich D’Ascoli, PSAR CEO, commented on Robert’s response:

I have devoted the past fifteen years of my life advocating for Realtors. I join hundreds of volunteers in saying this post was inspirational. It moves a lot of people who are involved with, and give so much to, this industry. 

Robert is referring to those who are not REALTORS®. His perspective also applies to those REALTORS® who volunteer versus those who don’t; to those who contribute to the PACs and HAF and those who don’t.  It is critical that individuals look at the history and understand the issues before jumping to conclusions. Just two years ago AB-5 passed requiring that most Californians become employees. The fact that Realtors are not employees right now did not happen by chance. There is a massive organization in place to protect not only homeownership but also the interests of those who facilitate it. There are a few REALTORS® doing so much to help all REALTORS® It’s important to honor and recognize their selfless efforts.

Robert’s words as a REALTOR® are meaningful. I wish more of our leaders would step up and articulate these same ideals.


In addition to recognition from Supervisor Nora Vargas, Robert is receiving honors from other elected officials, including Congressman Juan Vargas, State Senator Ben Hueso and Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez.

Some of those officials are preparing a proclamation containing these tributes to Robert:

WHEREAS, Robert Cromer served as 2020 President of the Pacific Southwest Association of Realtors (PSAR), one of the largest real estate trade organizations for San Diego-area REALTORS®;

WHEREAS, Robert provided outstanding leadership and vision during a surreal year of setbacks and hardships when a brutal pandemic swept the globe as the shadow of COVID-19 enveloped the land;

WHEREAS, PSAR thrived and grew its membership during an unparalleled, difficult and challenging year, thanks to Robert’s demonstration of strong leadership and clear communication that relieved anxiety and encouraged strength and resiliency among PSAR members;

WHEREAS, Robert embodied PSAR’s mission to empower REALTORS®, to protect private property rights and create homeownership opportunities for all, while adhering to the highest standards of integrity and the REALTOR® Code of Ethics;

WHEREAS, Robert’s example of leadership and decision making in uncertain times, plus his blend of competence, firmness, calmness and empathy in a crisis, empowered PSAR members to flourish by leveraging a collective strength in service to homebuyers and sellers throughout the greater San Diego County community;

THEREFORE, we hereby join the 3,500 PSAR real estate professionals in thanking Robert Cromer for his tremendous volunteer service and offering our best wishes for a successful real estate career in the future as a past PSAR President. Good luck and best wishes.


 ~Thanks, Robert Cromer, for your service to PSAR. We’re all very grateful.

Topics: Announcements


Posted by Rick Griffin on Jan 29, 2021 4:25:30 PM

PSAR Board Quotes
We turned the calendar a few weeks ago and bid a not-so-fond adieu to what many felt to be one of the worst years in modern history. The year 2020 was a tough year in multiple respects, made worse by the fact that no one could see it coming. During the majority of this surreal year, a brutal pandemic made it appearance, and the shadow of COVID-19 enveloped our state, country and world. We gladly put 2020 in our rearview mirror. With a new year comes a new PSAR Board of Directors.

Here is your PSAR Board of Directors serving during the 2021 calendar year.

Ditas Yamane will serve as 2021 PSAR board president, succeeding Robert Cromer, who will serve as past president. Max Zaker and Sam Calvano will serve in 2021 as president-elect and secretary-treasurer, respectively.

Directors serving on the 2021 PSAR board will include Mike Anderson, Yvonne Cromer, Merrie Espina, Jason Lopez, Laurie MacDonald, Peter Mendiola, Rafael Perez, Amy Ruiz, Amber Tannehill and Mike White. Andrea Martino will serve as the affiliate director.

So, what should PSAR members expect in 2021? How will the 2021 housing market differ from that of 2020? What other differences can we expect in 2021?

To find some answers, we consulted 2021 PSAR board members and asked them to share in their own words 2021 housing market forecasts. You will be happy to note that the overall tone of the comments is positive. Their comments appear below.

-- “The housing market will remain seller-friendly with high buyer demand and relatively low mortgage rates. Slow housing supply will lead to rising housing prices. Home builders are expected to build more residential housing to help increase inventory even while facing higher cost of materials, longer materials delivery, labor skills shortage and especially regulatory cost burdens. With mortgage rates at their lowest, it will, indeed, be a spring frenzy. As resilient real estate professionals, it will be an eventful 2021 for us in the housing market as we continue to serve our clients, the real estate community and our neighborhood community.”
-- Ditas Yamane, 2021 President.

-- “I believe the market will continue to surge in early 2021 to fall or late 2021 due to more demand than supply of homes. If sellers want to sell, spring and early summer will be the optimal times. Even with job losses due to COVID-19, there are hundreds of thousands of millennials finally ready to buy. Why now? Most of them got married later and had kids, the number one reason for buying a home, later than any other generation before them. Because the millennials are the largest generation on the planet, they will continue to push prices up. San Diego is currently building about half as many homes as needed to just to keep up with demand. So if you are a buyer, get in asap so you can partake of the 7-to-10 percent increase we will see in 2021.”
-- Robert Cromer, 2020 President.

-- “Economic predictions are at best an opinion, but understanding the political and economic indicators could help provide some insight into what we can expect in the California housing market in 2021. The cost of money (mortgage interest rate) will remain below 4 percent offering massive financial incentive, especially for first-time homebuyers, and will continue to drive up home prices. Consumer confidence (overall job market and unemployment rate) may force and/or encourage homeowners to sell as we reach the peak in home prices, resulting in more inventory. The sun will continue to shine in California making it a desirable destination in which to live, play and invest in real estate.” 
-- Max Zaker, 2021 President-Elect.

-- “Here is what I foresee: Stable values, stable demand and a slight increase in rates. Vacancy will increase for commercial and residential rental properties, which will stabilize rents.”
-- Sam Calvano, 2021 board secretary-treasurer.

-- “I don't think there's any reason to think the trends in the housing market will change anytime soon. There is still a huge housing shortage, even with so many making the exodus from California. Many first-time buyers, and it appears many move-up buyers, are looking for bigger homes, often in the suburbs further away from downtown areas and job centers. My understanding is that interest rates will remain incredibly low allowing buyers to pay the rising prices often with a lower down payment and still keep their mortgage payments in check. Perhaps we’ll have as much as a 7-to-8 percent increase in values in 2021, although sooner or later prices are going to have to level off. Builders are doing what they can to meet the demand, but they cannot keep up.”
-- Mike Anderson, 2021 board member.

-- 2021 will continue to see a lack of homes for sale. Inventory shortage has been a major issue over the past couple of years and I expect that to continue in the New Year.  Currently we have about a 1 month supply of homes and that is fueling the continued price increases in the San Diego region. So, it will be a great time to consider selling as buyers are willing to pay top dollar. While the lack of inventory can present challenges for buyers and result in increased competition for homes, the historically low interest rates will continue to drive buyer demand and offset the higher prices. When you factor in the pandemic and lockdown, buyers also want some room to move around. Since many people have transitioned to remote work from home, we are seeing many leave the urban setting. After all, if one is working from home there is no need to live close to the office or commute. A good internet connection and great coffee will work just fine!
-- Jason Lopez, 2021 board member.

-- “Many homeowners affected by COVID-19 who either temporarily or permanently lost jobs or unexpectedly have reduced hours and income are on forbearance. Termination of forbearance, while homeowners are still held hostage by inability to catch up, will force sellers to sell or face foreclosure by their lenders. Their inability to qualify for any affordable option to keep their home will create new inventory.  There will be more houses to sell and will lessen the competition among buyers. With increased inventory, home prices will be stable and will allow for affordability again. Interest rates are of enormous importance to virtually everyone. Most borrowers respond to low interest rates, which is a motivation to invest in home purchase.”
-- Merrie Espina, 2021 board member.

-- “My prediction for the future of our housing market in 2021 is that we will continue to see low inventory and higher demand due to low interest rates. I believe that there has never been a better time to invest in real estate and I think that people will be looking for larger homes to accommodate working and schooling from home and more usable outdoor space as well. I also believe that, in addition to building relationships, agents will need to focus on their online and social presence to set themselves apart from the pack as this is going to be a primary resource for both buyers and sellers to identify an agent with whom they wish to work.”
-- Amber Tannehill, 2021 board member.

-- “With every New Year is the opportunity to harness the energy born out of the previous year’s struggles. So, overall, I’m optimistic for 2021, although for real estate I’m expecting more of the same market conditions. My wish for everyone at PSAR is that the New Year bring renewed hope and joy as we continue on our journey one day at a time.”
-- Mike White, 2021 board member.

With more than 3,500 members, PSAR is, one of the San Diego County’s largest real estate trade groups for San Diego-area REALTORS®. Services to REALTORS® include California Regional MLS services, educational training classes, advocacy and resources for realtors, including lock boxes and signage.

Topics: Announcements

Fair Housing 2021

Posted by Kevin McElroy on Jan 26, 2021 1:30:00 PM

New Fair Housing Rsources

Diversity is a core value of PSAR.  Realtors are the stewards of the right to own, use and transfer private property, and fair housing protects buyers, sellers, landlords and tenants.  Our livelihood as REALTORS® is dependent on fair housing laws.

Resources, Training & Updates

NY Newsday ran an investigative story in 2019 called LI Divided. The story made clear that in order to pursue the goals of the Fair Housing Act, we need to make sure that real estate agents are accountable, that we continue to improve the real estate culture and that we provide solid training.

NAR launched Fairhaven, a fair housing simulation training for REALTORS® that uses the power of storytelling and game-play to help members identify, address and prevent discriminatory practices in real estate. Inspired by real stories, this innovative online experience has agents work against the clock to sell homes in the fictional town of Fairhaven, while confronting discrimination in the homebuying process. Learners will also walk in the shoes of a homebuyer facing discrimination. The training provides customized feedback that learners can apply to daily business interactions.

PSAR's Board of Directors encourages all Realtors to enhance awareness of fair housing practices via this no-cost program. Be an advocate for fair housing and the future of our industry. Commit to combating discrimination in real estate. You can learn more about Fairhaven by viewing the promotional Video at the link shown below.

Get started NOW by visiting https://fairhaven.realtor/ to explore the fictional town of Fairhaven and assess how well you are adhering to fair housing principles.

Hate Speech: In 2020 REALTORS implemented rule changes to ensure that the Realtor® Code of Ethics extends beyond real estate-related activities. It is now a violation for Realtors® to use harassing or hate speech toward any of the protected classes under Article 10 of NAR's Code of Ethics. Those protected classes are defined by race, color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status, national origin, sexual orientation and/or gender identity. Violators may be disciplined by punishment up to and including removal from the Association. . Read more here.

REALTOR Resources:
• Fair Housing Action Plan (ACT initiative)
• Fair Housing FAQs provided by C.A.R.
• Fair Housing legal resources provided by C.A.R.
• Predatory Lending resources provided by C.A.R.

Other San Diego County Resources:
• San Diego County Fair Housing
• City of San Diego Fair Housing
• CSA San Diego Manages Fair Housing for Many Localities
• The San Diego Regional Alliance for Fair Housing


PSAR's mission is to empower Realtors to flourish while being accountable to each other, our clients, and our community.

Since 1928, the Pacific Southwest Association of REALTORS® has played a significant role in shaping the history, growth and development of the Real Estate industry in San Diego County. 

Topics: Education, Brokers/Managers, Market Information


Posted by Rick Griffin on Jan 22, 2021 4:49:22 PM

Joyce Evans Retiring
After 13 years of serving PSAR members as a loyal and dedicated PSAR employee, Joyce Evans is retiring. Her final day is Friday, January 29. She started her career with PSAR on January 7, 2008.

Joyce Evens Working all areas of PSAR

Over course of her career with PSAR, Joyce has served in a number of capacities, including communications coordinator marketing manager (which included graphic design, marketing, advertising) member services (onboarding new and transferred members, resolving a range of member issues), new member orientation coordinator, and retail sales. When PSAR published a bimonthly magazine, Joyce was the designer.

Outside of the real estate industry, Joyce, who has lived in San Diego since 1982, has brought her considerable skills and work ethic to bear in a number of different industries, including academic, landscaping, printing, building maintenance, and coal-powered energy. In all instances, she held marketing and graphic design positions. Joyce has a bachelor’s degree in art from California State University Northridge. A notable achievement of hers occurred when she was on the design team of McQuiston & Partners, that created 13 coffee table books that were published between 1989 and 1993 and resulted in Joyce being the recipient of several design awards.)

During the past two of years at PSAR, Joyce has served as the PSAR education manager, overseeing scheduling and organizing training classes and a variety of seminars, both on site and virtual.

Before she departs, all PSAR members are invited to send Joyce an email with their thoughts to joyce@psar.org, or mail a card to 880 Canarios Ct., Chula Vista, CA 91910.

Joyce and Rich D’Ascoli, PSAR CEO, recently spent some time together discussing the highlights of her illustrious career at PSAR. The recording is available on Facebook, where well-wishers comments also can be posted.


Joyce Evans and Co-Workers

Rich: We are really going to miss you, Joyce. You’re known as one of the most beloved and kind and respected members of the staff. You reflect the essence of our association, our staff’s willingness to go the extra mile to help our members, and empathy for any problems a member may be facing. You really are able to feel their pain.

Joyce: Thank you, Rich. You get the credit for forming an excellent group of employees who really work well together as a team. I will miss the camaraderie, the way we encourage each other and the friendships and relationships with members. Every PSAR employee works extremely hard. I’m not kidding when I say it can be a tough job on some days and it’s not easy to display a good disposition. We all wear a lot of different hats. But, I thank the Lord Jesus Christ for teaching me that everybody needs to be loved and no one is less of a person than anybody else. I will miss some of our members dropping by the office simply to give hugs to the staff. Our members are some of the greatest people on this planet.


Rich: Why did you decide to retire?

Joyce Evans and Husband GordonJoyce: Well, I believe it’s a good time to move on to other things. The timing is right. My husband Gordon and I plan to do some camping and visiting friends over the next couple of months. I’m hoping to get the vaccine before I leave. However, I’m not really retiring. I’m hoping to take my real estate sales license exam next month and begin a new line of work as a REALTOR®. It’s sorta funny that here I am, at 69 years of age, ready to start something new. Hey, after I get my license and sign-up with PSAR, I will know how to complete the paperwork. 


Rich: What are some memories of your time at PSAR? I always appreciated your efforts to speak Spanish with our Spanish-speaking members. We always joked together that you reminded me of my annoying sister.

Joyce: And you, Rich, reminded me of “mi hermanito es irritante.” Thankfully, I took Spanish in high school and college. But, seriously, I enjoyed brainstorming with you about marketing strategies. Also, when PSAR was down to only three employees during the recessionary years in 2008 and 2009, you hosted after-work tailgating in the parking just to talk, tell jokes and encourage each other during those tough times. And, I will always be grateful, Rich, for how you emphasized to the staff to learn and use the latest technology to improve our service to our members. You were patient with the learning curve and never afraid for us to try new things. I appreciated the opportunity to be on the cutting edge of technology. So, when COVID and the lockdowns hit us, we hardly missed a beat with continuous remote service to our members during probably one of the toughest years ever for the real estate profession. Fortunately, there are many technology tools that REALTORS® can use to make their jobs easier. I have many good memories of my time at PSAR.

Joyce 4                              ____________________

Rich: So, what are we going to say when people call PSAR and ask for you? Some of our 3,500 members only want to talk to you. I’m just joking, but can I give them your home phone number? 

Joyce: Instead, just tell them to send me an email and then I’ll call them back in a couple of months.


Topics: Announcements


Posted by Rick Griffin on Jan 15, 2021 4:08:22 PM

Voice of Real Estate - November

Although 2020 will be remembered as a surreal year of setbacks and hardships when a brutal pandemic changed the world amid government-imposed lockdowns, it was a terrific final month on the calendar for California’s housing market.

According to the most recent monthly home sales and price report from the California Association of REALTORS® (C.A.R.), released Friday, the state’s housing market closed out 2020 on a high note with solid home sales in December, plus a record-high median home price for the fifth time in the year.

December 2020’s statewide sales total exceeded the 500,000-units benchmark for the second month in a row. Closed escrow sales of existing, single-family detached homes in California totaled a seasonally adjusted annualized rate of 509,750 units in December 2020. It was an increase of 0.2 percent from 508,820 in November 2020, and 28 percent higher from December 2019, when 393,370 homes were sold on an annualized basis.

The year-over-year, double-digit sales gain marked the fifth consecutive month and the largest yearly gain since May 2009.

For the 2020 year, annual home sales rose to a preliminary 411,870 closed escrow sales in California, up 3.5 percent from 2019’s pace of 397,960.

Meanwhile, California’s median home price set another record in December 2020, after dipping below the $700,000 benchmark the previous month. The statewide median home price rose 2.7 percent on a month-to-month basis to $717,930 in December 2020, up from $698,890 in November 2020. Home prices continued to gain on a year-over-year basis with the statewide median price surging 16.8 percent from $614,880 recorded in December 2019.

The double-digit increase in a year-over-year comparison was the fifth in a row, and the month-to-month gain was higher than the long-run average of 0.8 percent observed between 1979 and 2019.

For the 2020 year, the statewide median home price was $659,380, an increase of 11.3 percent from a revised $592,230 in 2019.

In San Diego County, December 2020 home sales were 4.4 percent higher compared to November 2020 and 30.3 percent higher than in December 2019.

The median home price for a single-family detached home in San Diego County dropped slightly in December 2020 to $730,000, compared to $740,000 in November 2020, a 1.4 percent decrease, but a 11.5 percent increase from December 2019’s figure of $655,000.

December 2020 County Sales and Price Activity
(Regional and condo sales data not seasonally adjusted)
December 2020 County Sales and Price Activity

“It’s a testament to the strength of the market that even after the pandemic effectively shut down the spring home-buying season in 2020, the market still was able to recover the substantial sales lost in the first half of the year and even top 2019’s levels,” said C.A.R. President Dave Walsh, vice president and manager of the Compass San Jose office. â€śWith mortgage rates expected to stay near the lowest in history, demand for homeownership will continue to be strong, so home sales should remain elevated into the first half of 2021, as motivated buyers take advantage of the increased purchasing power.”

“Home prices, which usually peak during the summer, were unseasonably strong in December,” said C.A.R. Vice President and Chief Economist Jordan Levine. “The imbalance between supply and demand continues to fuel home price gains as would-be home sellers remain reluctant to list their homes during the pandemic, contributing to a more-than-40-percent year-over-year decline in active listings for the seventh straight month.”

Perhaps due to increasing home prices, more consumers said it is a good time to sell, according to C.A.R.’s monthly Consumer Housing Sentiment Index. Conducted in early January, the poll found that 59 percent of consumers said it is a good time to sell, up from 55 percent a month ago, and up from 56 percent a year ago. Meanwhile, low interest rates continue to fuel the optimism for homebuying; one-fourth of the consumers who responded to the poll believed that now is a good time to buy a home, unchanged from last year.

Other key points from C.A.R.’s December 2020 resale housing report included:

-- Home sales from a regional perspective increased by double-digits in all major regions in December 2020, with a year-over-year gain of at least 20 percent in nearly every region. The San Francisco Bay Area remained on top with the highest gain of 40.2 percent over last year, followed by Southern California (31.4 percent), the Far North (30.8 percent) and the Central Valley (22.2 percent).

-- Median home prices from a regional perspective also posted increases in December 2020 by more than 10 percent in year-over-year comparisons. The Central Coast region had the largest year-over-year price increase, gaining 17.9 percent from a year ago. The San Francisco Bay Area had the second largest increase of 16.4 percent, followed by the Central Valley (15.5 percent), the Far North (15.2 percent) and Southern California (13.0 percent).

-- Active listings declined in December 2020 as expected during the holiday season. Active listings fell 47.1 percent in December 2020, compared to December 2019 from last year and continued to drop more than 40 percent on a year-over-year basis for the seventh straight month. On a month-to-month basis, for-sale properties dropped 18.6 percent in December 2020, higher than the five-year average of -14.0 percent, observed between 2015 and 2019.

-- The unsold inventory of available homes for sale dropped to 1.3 months in December 2020, matching the record-low set in 2004. Statewide inventory in November 2020 was 1.9 months. Inventory levels measured in months refers to the number it would take for the current supply of available homes on the market to sell-out given the current rate of sales. C.A.R. said the surge in the coronavirus cases played a role in the decrease in active listings as homeowners remain concerned about the worsening coronavirus pandemic situation.

December 2020 County Unsold Inventory and Days on Market
(Regional and condo sales data not seasonally adjusted)
December 2020 County Unsold Inventory and Days on Market

-- In San Diego County, the inventory of available homes for sale in December 2020 was 1.2 months, compared to 1.6 months in November 2020, 1.8 months in October 2020 and 2.2 months in December 2019.

-- The median number of days it took to sell a California single-family home was 11 days in December 2020, compared to nine days in November 2020, 10 days in October 2020, 11 days in September 2020 and 28 days in December 2019. The nine-day November 2020 figure was the lowest ever recorded.

-- In San Diego County, the median number of days an existing, single-family home remained unsold on the market was eight days in December 2020, compared to seven days in November, October and September 2020. The timeframe a year ago in December 2019 was 20 days. The December 2020 eight-day figure also compares to eight days in August 2020, 10 days in July 2020, 12 days in June 2020, 11 days in May 2020, eight days in April 2020, 10 days in March 2020, 12 days in February 2020 and 23 days in January 2020.

-- With homebuying interest remaining high, the housing market in Californian’s mountain resort areas in December 2020 continued to exhibit strong gains compared to December 2019. Mammoth Lakes saw the biggest year-over-year sales increase in December 2020, surging 116.7 percent from the same month a year ago, followed by Lake Arrowhead (78.6 percent), Big Bear (54.1 percent) and South Lake Tahoe (31.7 percent).

-- Overall for the year 2020, home sales in mountain resort communities increased 92.7 percent in Big Bear, 51 percent in Lake Arrowhead, 49.5 percent in South Lake Tahoe and 37.5 percent in Mammoth Lake.

-- The 30-year, fixed-mortgage interest rate averaged 2.68 percent in December, down from 3.72 percent in December 2019, according to Freddie Mac. The five-year, adjustable mortgage interest rate was an average of 2.79 percent, compared to 3.39 percent in December 2019.

In other recent real estate and economic news, according to news reports:

-- If a COVID-19 vaccine distribution proves successful, Fannie Mae economists are expecting the U.S. economy is poised for a strong year in 2021. Consumer spending is expected to accelerate during the spring, ultimately driving a considerably faster pace of growth in the second half of 2021.

-- The number of active listings in San Diego declined 20.6 percent in December 2020 in a year-over-year comparison, according to Realtor.com. Nationwide, the percentage decline for housing inventory in December was 39.6 percent year-over-year. The number of new listings can vary greatly from market to market. In December, San Jose, Calif. saw its new listing count climb by 123.8 percent and San Francisco-Oakland’s market increased by 98.9 percent.

-- The median monthly rent in San Diego was $2,355 in November 2020, which was a 3.8 percent year-over-year increase, according to Zillow. San Diego is the 8th most expensive city to rent an apartment, according to Zumper. Zumper’s report said the rental rate for a one-bedroom unit in San Diego grew 0.6 percent to $1,800 a month in December, while a two-bedroom's monthly rate increased 2.6 percent to $2,400.

-- Home prices continue to rise faster than wages across the nation, according to Attom Data Solutions. In the 2020 fourth quarter, home-ownership expenses consumed 29.6 percent of the average wages, compared to 26.4 percent in 4Q 2019. For the 4Q 2020 timeframe, homeownership costs exceeded an industry standard of 28 percent in 55 percent of U.S. counties, up from 43 percent in 2019 and 33 percent three years ago.

-- San Diego home prices are expected to rise by 8.3 percent in 2021, according to CoreLogic. The increase is the most of any other U.S. major city. The main reason is the lack of homes for sale will continue to push up prices. A secondary reason is income inequality. The pandemic has benefited high-wage workers who have been able to work from home, while low-wage workers lost income because their jobs were among the first shuttered during government-imposed shutdowns. Other cities with expected home price increases in 2021 include Miami (3.2 percent), Los Angeles (3.2 percent) and Washington, D.C. (2.9 percent), while the national average is expected to be around 2.5 percent. In contrast, Houston, hit hard by declines in the oil industry and the recent hurricane season, will see prices decrease 1.4 percent.

Topics: Brokers/Managers, Market Information

San Diego Tax Accessor Educates on Benefits of PROP. 19

Posted by Rick Griffin on Jan 8, 2021 5:05:56 PM

More than 100 PSAR members learned more about property tax benefits available to clients of REALTORS® from Proposition 19 during a Zoom meeting earlier this week with Taxpayer Advocate Jordan Marks of the San Diego County Accessor-Recorder-County Clerk (ARCC) Office.

Recorded Video of the Presentation

How-to-win 19 with Jordan Marks


Attachments from the presentation:

Prop. 19, approved by California voters in the recent November general election, offers significant benefits to homeowners and sellers. The ballot measure was endorsed by the California Association of REALTORS® (C.A.R.) and other business and community organizations because it will spur housing economic recovery.

Simply put, Prop. 19 expands the affordable housing tools by allowing senior homeowners over 55 years old, people with severe disabilities and victims of natural disasters or wildfires to keep their low tax base and move or rebuild anywhere statewide.

In addition, Prop. 19 addressed a tax loophole allowing families to pass their homes and affordable tax bases to their children, but no longer allowing them to be used for a commercial purpose.

However, Marks told PSAR members that it’s important to remember that some rules relating to Prop. 19 will change on Feb. 15 and April 1.

Before Feb. 15, in the case of transferring home ownership from parent to child or grandparent to grandchild, the law allows for unlimited transfer of assessed value on a primary resident with no requirement to live in the property and up to $1 million of assessed value on all non-primary residential properties.

After Feb. 15, the law changes with a limit of $1 million transfer of assessed value on a primary resident, plus a requirement to live in the property and no transfer of assessed value on any property not a primary resident.

Before April 1, for relocating homeowners over 55 years old, the current rules limit the senior exclusion from property tax reassessment to one time plus a requirement to live in the property.

After April 1, the senior exclusion from property tax assessment can be claimed for three times for any property in the state (but unlimited times for those whose homes were destroyed or substantially damaged by a wildfire or natural disaster). Filing for the exclusion must occur within two years from the date of the sale or purchase.Jordan Marks speaking on PROP 19

Marks, a longtime PSAR member, welcomes “Our office is here to be of service to PSAR members,” said Marks. “We’re here to serve your needs as a partner. We don’t close until you do, and you have our commitment to help you in your business.” calls and emails from PSAR members.

He can be reached at  Jordan.Marks@sdcounty.ca.gov. For emergency assistance you can reach Jordan on his cell phone is (619) 372-0226.The website for the ARCC office is www.SDARCC.com.


Topics: Brokers/Managers, Market Information, Industry


Posted by Rick Griffin on Dec 31, 2020 10:45:00 AM

blogbanner_210102_411-1It’s no surprise that Merriam-Webster, the dictionary publisher, selected “pandemic” as its 2020 Word of the Year. The COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic changed life in ways that none of us could have imagined in 2019. It was on every TV channel, every news website and part of every conversation. Everyone was impacted, including homebuyers and sellers.

Indeed, the pandemic even changed homebuyers’ housing preferences, according to the California Association of REALTORS’® (C.A.R.) Annual Housing Market Survey, which reveals homebuyers’ behavior throughout the 2020 year.

The recently-released survey found that more than two in five California REALTORS® (43 percent) saw a pandemic-related change in their buyers’ preferences in the property type they wanted to purchase in 2020.

In response to pandemic-related, government-imposed prolonged lockdowns and quarantines that forced homebound distance learning for school and working remotely for the job, the most frequent homebuyer requests included a bigger home (39 percent), a home with more rooms (35 percent), a home in a suburb rather than in an urban area (37 percent) and a home in a rural area rather than a city or suburb (26 percent). Not surprisingly, the survey also found 37 percent of homebuyers in 2020 were less concerned about the commute time to work.

The survey also showed a variety of interesting aspects of homebuyers’ behavior statewide in 2020.
For example:

-- The top three reasons homebuyers purchased a home in 2020 included tired of renting (25 percent), desire for a larger home (20 percent) and desire for a better location (19 percent). For first-time homebuyers, tired of renting was the most popular reason at 54 percent. For repeat homebuyers, 25 percent said their primary reason for buying in 2020 was a desire for a larger home, an increase from 21 percent in 2019. Respondents agreed that low mortgage rates made buying a home makes more sense than renting for many first-timers.

-- The average number of multiple offers made on available homes for sale in 2020 reached its highest level since 2013. Nearly two-thirds (59.2 percent) of homes sold in 2020 received multiple offers at an average of 4.8 offers per home. In 2019, less than half (47.7 percent) of homes sold received multiple offers with an average of 3.9 offers on each home. Homes priced between $500,000 and $1 million received the most multiple offers in 2020 with 67.3 percent receiving an average of six offers.

-- The real estate housing market in 2020 was one of the most competitive markets in decades. A large share of properties sold above their asking price in 2020. Approximately 35 percent of homebuyers paid more than what home sellers asked for in 2020, compared to a quarter (26.7 percent) in 2019. The 2020 figure was the highest in seven years and is 16 percent higher than the long-run average. Homes in the $500,000-to-$1 million price range sold the fastest with an average of 10 days.

-- More people purchased vacation and second homes in 2020, the highest percentage since 2016. Vacation homes represented 6 percent share of total sales, compared to 4 percent in 2019. The flexibility to work from home, plus a desire to move away from metropolitan areas, resulted in higher housing demand in resort areas. Overall, home sales in California resort areas outperformed other housing sectors in the state in 2020. In addition, the share of investor buyers of rental properties was 8.1 percent, the lowest since 2001, due to uncertainty over eviction moratoriums.

-- Home sellers in 2020 pocketed a gain of roughly $210,000 from their home sale, which was about 63 percent higher than the price they paid for their home. Not surprisingly, the longer a homeowner lives in their home will increase the profit they can expect when they sell. Sellers who lived in their homes for less than five years earned a 16 percent profit from their sale in 2020, while those who lived in their home five or more years earned a 100 percent profit.

C.A.R. has conducted its Housing Market Survey annually since 1981.

Topics: Brokers/Managers, Market Information, Industry

Get a $1250 Gift Card for your First Time Homebuyer (out of Funds)

Posted by Kevin McElroy on Dec 30, 2020 11:59:16 AM

First Time Home Buyer Program

Starting January 8th 2021 (ran out of funds mid January), you can apply on behalf of your clients for the California Association of REALTORS® Housing Affordability Fund (HAF) Home Essentials Program 

So, what exactly is the HAF’s Home Essentials Program:
C.A.R.’s Housing Affordability Fund’s Home Essentials Program will provide qualified first-time California homebuyers a $1,250 Lowe’s Gift Card to purchase appliances for their new home. Due to limited availability, funds will be distributed on a first come/first served basis.
Launch Date: January 8, 2021 (applications will be available beginning January 8th) 
How to Qualify:
  • Be a first-time homebuyer
  • Homebuyers must use a California REALTOR® in the transaction
  • Purchase a primary single-family residence in California with the intent to occupy the property as a primary residence
  • The conforming loan amount on the single-family residence must be at or below the FHA conforming loan limit
  • The purchase of the single-family residence must use financing. All-cash purchases do not qualify

HAF must receive all program requirements below no later than thirty (30) days after closing escrow:
1. Home Essentials Program Application and Home Essentials Certification Form
2. Purchase Contract
3. Closing Disclosure Form
How to Apply:
REALTORS® must complete a Home Essentials Program application and Home Essentials Program Certification form on behalf of their client. The Home Essentials Program application form along with rules and conditions for HAF’s Home Essentials Program are available HERE.
PLEASE NOTE: Link for application will be available January 08, 2021 at www.carhaf.org 
HAF Home Essentials Program

Topics: Announcements, Brokers/Managers, Industry