The Tax Benefits of Home Ownership

Home ownership comes with many benefits, including tax advantages. Here are a few ways that owning a home can save you money. Mortgage Interest Deduction When you take out a loan to buy your house, you get a deed of trust (mortgage), requiring you to make monthly payments to a bank or other lender. Usually, … Read more

An Expensive Calamity

Most folks in Mendocino County have heard of the Assessor’s Office, the Auditor’s Office, and the Tax Collector’s Office, but very few could tell you exactly what they do. As thousands of Mendocino County residents begin receiving notices about back property taxes, knowing who to turn to could become of great interest. It all started … Read more

Spring Cleaning to Avoid Disaster – Part II

As I mentioned last week, spring cleaning is kind of like exercising—the benefits are great, but it’s hard to get yourself to do it. Here’s are a few more recommendations to keep your house in peak condition. HVAC Filters Like most appliances, heating and air conditioning systems run more efficiently when their filters aren’t covered … Read more

Spring Cleaning to Avoid Disaster

Spring cleaning is kind of like exercising—the benefits are great, but it’s hard to get yourself to do it. Here’s a little pep talk about why spring cleaning is worth the effort (and hey, I believe cleaning can count as exercise, so you can feel twice as good about your efforts). Refrigerator Coils If you … Read more

Which Type of Mortgage is Right for you?

When you apply for mortgage to buy a home, the options can be confusing, even overwhelming. Figuring out which loan is right for you depends on several factors. How long do you plan to hold the loan? How much cash do you have? What is your monthly income and credit score? To make matters more … Read more

Why should I care about the difference between a legal parcel and an APN?

If you’ve ever looked at a property tax statement, you’ll notice there’s at least one parcel number listed. This is your assessor’s parcel number (APN), and APNs are used to determine your property tax burden. When buying property, you may see the term “legal parcel” and this is not necessarily the same as your assessor’s … Read more

Beware of Office Exclusives

Generally speaking, when you decide to list your house for sale, you expect your REALTOR to shout it from the rooftops. That is, you want them to put up a lawn sign, post it on the Multiple Listing Service (MLS), share it on social media, and advertise using any means at their disposal. The more … Read more

California Unveils Shared Loan Program for First-Time Buyers

My friend Ginny Richards, a senior loan officer at Kind Lending in Ukiah, was just telling me about a new loan program from the California Finance Housing Agency (CalFHA). It’s called the California Dream for All Shared Appreciation Loan, and if you’re a first-time home buyer, it could be worth looking into. What is the … Read more

10 Years Ago

Exactly 10 years ago this week, I started writing this weekly real estate column. Here was the inaugural column. By way of introduction, I’m Dick Selzer and I’ve been in Real Estate in the Ukiah Valley since the 1970s. After more than 35 years in the industry, I thought I’d share a few facts and … Read more