News

SAVE THE DATE

Tuesday, October 17th, 2017

Julie Mason

Julie Mason

Bill Richardson

Bill Richardson

Sam Donaldson

Sam Donaldson

Silver Bullet Productions presents

ACTIONS MATTER

Saturday, November 18

La Fonda on the Plaza

Reception and Conversation $160 – Limited seating

5:30 p.m. Reception, Wine and Appetizers

6:30 p.m. Conversation

Please join us to talk about the consequences of Actions with commentator on POTUS, Julie Mason, Bill Richardson, and Sam Donaldson. Purchase tickets the Silver Bullet Productions website by clicking here or call 505.820.0552. $135 is deductible on each ticket purchase of $160. Your donations support educational projects in tribal communities. For more information click here.

Defending The Fire – There will always be warriors

Friday, October 6th, 2017

Defending The Fire

If London (Native Spirit Film Festival) is too far to travel to see Defending the Fire on October 14th, you can see this award winning film by Silver Bullet Productions on October 20th or 21st at the Screen (Santa Fe Independent Film Festival) or in Albuquerque on November 19th at the Pueblo Film Festival. Pam Pierce, Producer.

4 Things You Really Wish Your Sellers Knew

Friday, September 29th, 2017

DAILY REAL ESTATE NEWS | WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 20, 2017

Reprinted from Realtor.com

You don’t want to hurt your clients’ feelings. But undoubtedly there are a few things that pop up in the course of transactions that you wish sellers already knew, so that you could avoid having some awkward conversations with them. Real estate pros chime in at realtor.com® with some of the top things they wish sellers knew about selling a home, including:

Your home decor isn’t always perfect for selling.

“While your home may be beautifully decorated, it still looks like your home, not the buyer’s,” Teresa Stephenson, vice president of a residential brokerage at Platinum Properties in New York, told realtor.com®. Clutter, in particular, can make a home feel cramped. “You don’t have to pay to have your home staged, but if you don’t buy into the concept that ‘less is more,’ you’ll pay when it comes time to sell,” Stephenson adds.

Stop being so secretive with your agent.

Sellers need to disclose any problems with the property, like a broken air conditioner, leaky faucets, water damage, or termite infestation. “Don’t keep any of your home’s flaws from your agent because you are scared it might hurt your sale,” says Karen Elmir, founder and CEO of the Elmir Group in Miami. The listing agent is on the homeowner’s side, but she must be aware of what needs to be fixed or what could become an issue in a transaction going forward.

Remodeling doesn’t guarantee a price uptick.

While remodeling projects may enhance a property, the projects homeowners take on are never a guarantee of payback at resale. “An ROI, or return, on a home’s upgrades does not necessarily increase value,” says Michael Kelczewski, a real estate pro with Brandywine Fine Properties Sotheby’s International Realty in Delaware and Maryland. The payback will greatly depend on what type of home improvement was completed. (Read more: The Remodeling Impact Report)

Be ready to fix some things.

Sellers may have to spend a few bucks to get their home ready to sell. For example, they may need to “replace the trim the dogs scratched up,” says Katie Messenger, a real estate pro with Bello Dimora Real Estate Network in Kentucky and Cincinnati. “Clean the scuff marks off the walls. Power-wash the algae off the vinyl siding. To you, it’s totally normal because you’ve lived with these issues for years. To buyers, these will look like expensive repairs, which means they’ll have to lowball you, or not make an offer at all, because your house ‘needs a lot of work.’”

Read more things every real estate agent wishes sellers knew at realtor.com®.

Source: “9 Things Every Real Estate Agent Wish You Knew About Selling Your Home,” realtor.com® (Sept. 20, 2017)

EVENTS IN SANTA FE

Thursday, August 24th, 2017

The Tempest

Santa Fe Association of Homebuilders Haciendas Parade of Homes

Wednesday, August 16th, 2017

Haciendas – A Parade of Homes 2017

Truly a world class event, professionals in design and construction, green building and architecture, and visitors from around the world look forward to attending to experience “Santa Fe Style” and to dream of capturing that cutting edge, creative, endemic design and use of materials that has made Santa Fe famous. Whether you are looking to move to Santa Fe, New Mexico, or simply gain inspiration for your home, the Haciendas – A Parade of Homes is the destination you don’t want to miss! Homes will be open Fri-Sun from 11am-6pm, August 11-13th & 18-20th.

Santa Fe Botanical Garden

Friday, August 4th, 2017

SF Botanical Garden

 

 

 

 

 

ADULT & FAMILY EDUCATION OPPORTUNITIES 

Yoga in the Garden

Yoga in the Garden

Every Tuesday

8 – 9 am

Come to the beautiful Santa Fe Botanical Garden for stretching, wellness and relaxation. There are few outdoor locations in Santa Fe that can rival the quiet beauty and tranquility of the Botanical Garden at Museum Hill.  You will relieve stress and quiet your mind in a supportive atmosphere with this morning yoga class. The format is a vinyasa flow class that is open to all levels, from beginner to expert. Mats will be available at the garden.

Register Today!

How to HaHow to Harvestrvest & Preserve Lavender

Thursday, August 3

10 am – 12:30 pm

 

Learn how to harvest and preserve lavender from your garden.  You will learn proper pruning techniques, as well as how to prepare your lavender to survive the winter months. Discover how to store your lavender so that it can be used at a later date and make a lavender wand using fresh lavender!

Register Today

Garden Garden SproutsSprouts Pre-K Activity

Every Friday

9 – 10 am

 

Join us in our outdoor classroom for a hands-on program for 3-5 year olds and their caregiver.  Listen to a book and participate in interactive nature and garden related activities. Free for children 12 and Under and Garden Members; $5 Suggested Donation.

Find Out More!

Upstart Crows

Upstart Crows Present Hamlet

Friday and Saturday, August 4 & 5

5:15 pm

 

Bring a picnic dinner and enjoy a Shakespeare production at the Botanical Garden with Santa Fe’s youth Shakespeare troupe.

 Find out More!

Origami foOrigami for Beginnersr Beginners

Saturday, August 5

10 am – 12 pm

In this fun and interactive workshop, you will learn how to read origami patterns and symbols as well as how to fold a basic crane. We will discuss the history of origami and its various forms, and you will receive a beginner orientation to the tools and the assorted paper varieties you can utilize.

 Register Today!

Pollen: PollenWhat is It and How Does it Affect Our Lives?

Saturday, August 5

1-3 pm 

 

You hear a lot about insects and pollination, but how much do you know about pollen? How can something so small be so important to life on this planet? In this class you will learn about the structure and function of pollen, how pollen grains differ from one another, what makes up a pollen grain, and why pollen is so important to plants and animals. Lets delve into the interesting sex life of flowering plants!

Register Today!

Xeriscape

Xeriscape Gardening

Sunday, August 6

1-3 pm

Learn the basic principles of xeriscape design and how to have an aesthetically pleasing garden and landscape, all while saving water. Bob Pennington of Agua Fria Nursery will teach you the basics of a well-planned, water efficient, and beautiful xeriscape garden.

Register Today!

Tai Chi in tTai Chihe Garden

Every Monday Night!

5:30 – 6:30 pm

Tai Chi incorporates gentle exercises that improve fitness. The essential principles of Tai Chi include mind and body integration, fluid movements, and controlled breathing. Studies have shown that a regular practice reduces pain and the risk of falling, while strengthening knees, ankles, flexibility and mobility. Come and join us for a class that will help to improve your balance, strength and mental clarity!

 Register today!

NeNew Volunteerw Volunteer Orientation

Tuesday, August 8

10 am – 12 pm

 

Join us for a monthly introductory training for prospective volunteers at the Santa Fe Botanical Garden. This orientation will provide all of the resources for potential volunteers to get into the garden with basic skills and knowledge with one of our various volunteer opportunities. The class will cover the history, future, mission and the sites of the Santa Fe Botanical Garden.

Find Out More!

BotanBotanical Book Clubical Book Club: A Garlic Testament: Seasons on a Small NM Farm by Stanley Crawford

Tuesday, August 8

1 – 2:30 pm

 

 More than 20 years ago, Crawford ( Mayordomo ) and his wife Rosemary settled in a mountain valley an hour outside of Santa Fe. They made the adobe bricks with which they built a house and started both to raise a family and to work what is now a four-acre farm. This elegant and unsentimental account of how Crawford learned to grow his principal crop, garlic, and what that process has revealed about himself and his place in the world is probing. 

Find Out More!

Ed-Venture

Ed-Venture to SFCC’s Sustainability Program

Wednesday, August 9

6 – 8:30 pm

Join the Santa Fe Botanical Garden for an after hours tour of the Santa Fe Community College sustainability campus and greenhouses. In this behind the scenes Ed-venture, participants will be introduced to the sustainability program, its goals and the facilities. Participants will learn how they can become involved in this unique program and help to promote sustainability in New Mexico.

 Register Today!

CheCheese 101ese 101

Thursday, August 10

6:30 – 8 pm

Cheese 101 is a guided tasting through the world of cheese (cheese from Cheesemongers, no less!), representing differing milk types, regions, and styles. Through tasting, we’ll learn how to utilize our senses to identify and understand cheesemaking techniques, historical context of cheese origins, the difference between milk types, and more. We’ll also explore the basics of pairing cheese with condiments and beverages.

Register Today! 

How to Buy a House: 4 Ways to Purchase Faster and Smarter

Tuesday, August 1st, 2017

By Daniel Bortz | Jul 28, 2017

Reprinted from Realtor.com

How to buy a house

If you’re about to embark on the home-buying process, you want to know how to buy a house the quick and smart way. The process typically takes two to three months, but in a seller’s market with low inventory and strong buyer demand, it could take six months to a year—or longer. But what if you could cut that time in half, without having to make any sacrifices? You’d do it, right?

Of course you would.

Well, you’re in luck! Take a look at our recommendations for buying a home the smart way.

1. Let the government lend a hand

If you’re in the process of saving for a down payment, you might be able to scrape together the remainder of the money by qualifying for one of the more than 2,200 down payment assistance programs offered nationwide. These programs provide home buyers with low-interest loans, grants, and tax credits.

If you haven’t heard of down payment assistance before, you’re not alone. Many people don’t know about these programs or assume their loans are more difficult to get than they actually are.

You’ll have to meet certain eligibility requirements in terms of income, occupation, or credit, but buyers who use down payment assistance programs save an average of $17,766 between upfront savings and lower monthly mortgage payments over the life of the loan. Visit Down Payment Resource, which offers information on programs, to find a program you could be eligible for.

2. Stay on top of new listings

You can see what houses are currently for sale in your area using realtor.com®. To fully stay on top of brand-new listings in your preferred area, however, ask your real estate agent to set up an automated email through the local multiple listing service so that you’ll get pinged every time a new listing pops up that fits your needs.

Tracking new listings in real time can give you an edge over other buyers, because you’ll be in position to schedule showings right away and potentially make an offer before another buyer even steps foot inside the house.

3. Consider buying a foreclosure

Many home buyers overlook foreclosed and bank-owned properties often because they fear the condition of the home. That’s a valid concern, because foreclosed homes are frequently sold as is—which means the bank is not going to fix any problems (even if you uncover them during a home inspection). However, buying a home that’s in foreclosure has a couple of big advantages.

It’s often worth the investment, given that foreclosed homes sell for an average 15% below the home’s actual value—and foreclosed homes often sell for less than asking price. Also, because there is less competition among home buyers in this sector of the market, you’re less likely to go up against other bids when submitting an offer on a home that’s in foreclosure.

To begin your search you can browse listings of foreclosures on realtor.com, which might also be marked as “bank owned” or “real estate owned.”

4. Certify that your finances are in order

Closing times are getting longer: On average, it now takes 50 days to reach closing, up from 40 days in 2015, according to a recent report by Ellie Mae, a company that provides mortgage solutions to consumers.

To close faster, your best move is to get pre-approved for a home loan before submitting an offer on a property. A mortgage pre-approval entails a lender running a credit check and verifying your income and assets, followed by an underwriter doing a preliminary review of your financial portfolio. If everything checks out, the lender will issue you a written commitment for financing up to a certain loan amount that’s good for up to 90 to 120 days.

Meanwhile, getting pre-qualified simply means you’ve discussed your finances with a lender and received a verbal commitment for the loan. Consequently, a pre-qualification can cause a home seller to dismiss your offer outright. And even if you somehow manage to sign a sales contract with only a pre-qualification, it’s probably going to take your lender longer to get the loan approved than if you had pre-approval.

Daniel Bortz is a Realtor in Maryland, Virginia, and Washington, DC, who has written for Money magazine, Entrepreneur magazine, CNNMoney, and more.

IS THERE A MARKET SLOWDOWN COMING?

Friday, July 28th, 2017

By Steve Murray, Publisher, REAL TRENDS

In virtually every market in the country, inventory levels are at record lows, absorption rates are at all-time highs, and prices have risen far faster than the rate of increase in household incomes. Each of these factors had a hand in the NAR report that says existing home sales were down back in April; so was the pending home index.

We are more likely than not headed for a slowdown in housing sales in the near term. In the past, housing sales dipped due to slower economic growth or rising interest rates. Now, it’s due to the lack of inventory and the decline of affordability for many households to afford the soaring cost of new and existing homes. One good example is in San Francisco where homes are measurably down, in fact, sales have been down for more than just the last year, and prices are softening.

This downturn is more of a pause than a typical slump in housing sales. Prices have outrun incomes. Mortgage rates, while still historically low, have risen somewhat and are due to rise further. Household incomes are still growing and will likely continue to do so even given that two large sectors of the economy, energy and agriculture, are both in slumps. The absence of a downturn in the overall economy and the presence of a persistent strong demand for housing, indicates that while the downturn in unit sales could last for some time, it won’t be anywhere near as severe as the last downturn.

One last indicator that we observe is the percentages of all households that are buying homes in each year. Studies we produced for clients suggest that the normal percentage of all households that purchase a home in each year is approximately 4.6 percent. That is very near where we are today. We believe this is a good indicator that we are at a normal level of housing sales now—anything above that signals overheating.

It’s About to Become Easier to Qualify for a Mortgage—Here’s Why

Wednesday, July 26th, 2017

By Clare Trapasso | Jun 20, 2017

Republished from Realtor.com

Qualify Mortgage

We’re living in expensive times—when a bottle of fresh juice can run you $5, rents and home prices are soaring, and the bills never seem to stop piling up. But aspiring homeowners might soon get a break as it becomes a little easier for those with student, credit card, and car loan debt to qualify for a mortgage.

Fannie Mae plans to increase its allowable debt-to-income ratio from 45% to 50% on July 29. This means that more borrowers on the cusp of getting a loan (e.g., millennial, first-time, and lower- to moderate-income borrowers carrying more debt) could potentially qualify for a mortgage backed by Fannie.

The debt-to-income ratio is calculated by taking a potential borrower’s monthly gross income and dividing it by the borrower’s recurring debts such as monthly car payments. Lenders use this ratio to figure out if borrowers can afford to make their mortgage payments each month.

Fannie made the change after analyzing years of data that looked at the ability of borrowers to make their monthly payments. After this analysis, Fannie can “more accurately predict the risk of default among potential borrowers,” and it determined that increasing the ratio “will enable more qualified borrowers to get a mortgage loan,” said spokesman Pete Bakel in a statement.

“They’re trying to make more loans available,” says mortgage loan originator Don Frommeyer of Marine Bank, in Indianapolis. “When interest rates go up, the debt ratios go up. And that limits the number of people who can buy a house.”

Fannie, which purchases and guarantees mortgages, was already granting ratios of up to 50% with certain conditions—such as if the borrowers had deeper cash reserves, underwent financial counseling, or had higher incomes. The change opens the door to borrowers with more debt who can’t meet those conditions.

Your bank might have its own debt-to-income ratios

However, not everyone will be benefit from the change. Fannie Mae insures mortgages, but it’s still banks, credit unions, and other financial entities that make the loans—and those lenders have their own criteria.

But the increased debt allowance could encourage more lenders to make changes to their debt-to-income ratios. And that could help more buyers on the brink.

“The best thing the consumer can do is ask the lender if they underwrite to Fannie Mae guidelines,” says longtime mortgage broker Jeff Lazerson, based in Laguna Niguel, CA. If they don’t, “you [might] just have to find another lender. Or maybe you push back on that lender” to see if it’ll raise the limits.

Lower debt-to-income ratios won’t help everyone

A higher debt ratio isn’t a silver bullet for loan seekers, though.

“Mortgage borrowers need to keep in mind, it’s the person’s whole application that will determine whether or not they get approved,” says Eric Tyson, co-author of “Mortgages for Dummies.”

“If you don’t have a good credit score, if you don’t have a sufficiently large down payment, it won’t change the outcome of your application.”

Buyers who can’t qualify, even with the higher ratios, should consider other alternatives.

“Most people are looking to buy at the high end of their budget. They want to qualify for as much house as they can get, partly because homes are so expensive to begin with,” says Lazerson, who is also a mortgage columnist.

“They could look for a smaller-sized property [with a] lower sales price. They could find a co-signer, someone who they trust, usually a family member or a close friend,” Lazerson says. “Or [they could] come up with more down payment money.”

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Clare Trapasso is the senior news editor of realtor.com and an adjunct journalism professor. She previously wrote for a Financial Times publication and the New York Daily News. Contact her at clare.trapasso@move.com.

Follow @claretrap

How To Move Out Without a Hitch

Wednesday, July 19th, 2017

By Angela Colley | Mar 3, 2016

Reprinted from Realtor.com

Move Out

Well, dear home sellers, we’ve come a long way—together! From the first coat of paint you used to freshen up your house’s trim to the stress of wrangling your way to a deal, we’ve been with you every step of the way. Now you’ve made it to the final hurdle of selling a home: moving on out!

Don’t worry, this is the easy part… but you want to do it right. Here’s how to get through the last leg of your journey without a hitch.

Get your timeline in order

Once the paperwork is signed at closing, the buyers will officially own the house … and you won’t. That means that, technically, if you or your stuff is still there after the close, “the buyer could evict you,” says Joshua Jarvis, founder of Jarvis Team Realty in Duluth, GA. So make sure to have your exit strategy in place!

Still, most buyers will understand if you need a bit more time and have a legitimate reason—like if you can’t move until the weekend due to your work schedule. Just be sure to discuss these issues as soon as possible before the close, so your buyers can plan accordingly.

Decide what to leave behind

To make sure you’re leaving behind everything the buyer wanted—and that you agreed to—double-check the closing documents. There should be an itemized list of what comes with the house. And even if the buyers didn’t formally request them, it’s just good form to leave certain types of things behind.

Such as? “Generally speaking, you should leave anything that’s bolted to the wall,” says Jarvis. “Some homeowners want to take their fans and blinds to the next home, but generally if it’s screwed in, it stays.”

Also, if you and the buyers agreed to transfer any services—such as alarm monitoring or pest control—be sure to set that up before you go. Leave the buyers a detailed note in the house, or ask your agent to get in touch with theirs to make sure the transfer goes smoothly.

If you do inadvertently take an item that the buyers had requested, they have the right to ask for it back—and they could potentially sue you in civil court for the cost of a replacement. So, when in doubt, feel free to check with the buyers before you grab and go.

But don’t leave anything else behind

Just as important as what you leave behind is what you don’t. Your buyers have a right to move into a home that’s been cleared of furniture and other movable items they didn’t expressly request.

“Some folks leave all kinds of unwanted clothes, furniture, paint cans, and other items, thinking they are helping the buyers,” Jarvis says. If you truly think your buyers might love to have your old planting pots or kiddie equipment, go ahead and ask—but please don’t assume they’ll welcome your leftovers.

Even if you’re careful, you might forget something—at which point the buyers may contact their agent to get it back to you, but they also have the legal right to just keep or get rid of it. So double-check areas (e.g., the attic, garage, basement, storage shed, kitchen, and bathroom drawers) where people commonly overlook items.

Clean up

It’s common courtesy to leave the place not only clear of your possessions, but also clean. However, that doesn’t mean you have to leave it immaculate. “Generally, you shouldn’t have to pay to have it deep cleaned,” Jarvis says.

In most cases, a simple broom-clean will do. That means wiping down the countertops, cleaning out drawers, sweeping or vacuuming all the floors, and giving the bathroom and kitchen appliances a once-over so the new owners aren’t grossed out when they arrive.

Wait! Are you forgetting anything?

Before you close the door for the last time, run through a quick checklist. Did you eyeball every room for stray items? Have you forwarded your mail and turned off the utilities? Is the water running in the pool? Have you left behind incriminating evidence of a capital crime? (We’re kidding on that last part … we think.)

We all get in a bit of a rush even in the best planned moves, but you won’t be able to get back in, so it can’t hurt to do a final run-through.

Once you’re ready, it’s time to leave. You can drop a line to your Realtor® to let her know you’re out, although it’s usually a courtesy more than a necessity. If you’re feeling truly gracious, feel free to leave a note, card, or bottle of bubbly congratulating the people who’ve inherited your former home. Given all the fond memories you’ve built between those walls, wouldn’t it be nice to start the home’s new owners off on the right foot?

And buy yourself some Champagne, too.  Make it the good stuff–you’ve earned it.

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Angela Colley writes about real estate and all things renting and moving for realtor.com. Her work has appeared in outlets including TheStreet, MSN, and Yahoo.

Follow @angelancolley