3 Big Questions to Ask Yourself Before You Downsize

Whether you’re becoming an empty-nester or just feel like your current home is too big for your needs, there are a couple of questions to ask yourself before you take the plunge and downsize.

  1. Will this move save me money? Just because you are moving to a smaller home, there may still be additional expenses that need to be considered before you make a decision. Think: HOA fees, homeowner’s insurance that could increase based on the type of home you are moving in to, replacing old appliances, costs of maintenance, etc. Make sure that downsizing makes sense to you financially before you sell.
  2. What will I do with all of my STUFF? If you’re moving to a smaller home, there’s a big chance you will not have space for everything from your current home. This is a great opportunity to declutter, sell and/or donate items that you no longer use. If you just can’t seem to part with some of your things but you still want to downsize, perhaps it makes sense to rent a storage unit.
  3. Am I emotionally ready? The thought of downsizing is emotionally tough for many homeowners because it might mean that you are leaving a home that you love. It’s hard to leave a home where you have raised children, celebrated holidays and created memories! But if downsizing is truly the right decision for you, think of all of the wonderful memories you will be making in your new place! And, remember that the home that you once loved will now be ready for a new family to love.

If you’re comfortable with your answers to these questions and you’re ready to find your perfect, smaller home, we can help!

Associated Real Estate Agent Spotlight: Meet Sean McCostlin!

Each month, we’re highlighting one of the amazing real estate agents here at Associated Real Estate!

Meet Sean McCostlin!

Sean McCostlin

  1. Where did you grow up? Tell us about your family!

I was born in Monterey, California and lived in Salinas and Bakersfield before moving to Mojave. My dad works as an electrician for Chevron Oil and my mother is a homemaker.

  1. Have you always been in real estate or did you have a different career prior to becoming a real estate agent?

I received my Bachelors of Science in Advertising from San Jose State University. I worked in Retail Store Management for a majority of my life but recently decided to go into real estate because I view houses as the ultimate project. Selling homes comes naturally to me.

  1. What’s your favorite thing about Tehachapi?

The cooler climate compared to other areas in California.

  1. What is your number one piece of advice for someone trying to sell their house?

Make sure not to overprice!

  1. What do you think is the most important thing for clients to know about buying a house?

Try not to stress – that’s my job!

  1. Where is your favorite place in the world?

Venice, Italy.

  1. What do you love about being a real estate agent?

One of my favorite things about being a real estate agent is that I get to be my own boss.

Want to work with Sean? Contact him here!

Tehachapi Weekly Real Estate Sales Report ~ Feb. 25, 2019 – Mar. 3, 2019

Area Address Bedrooms Bathrooms Square Footage Acres Selling Price
Bear Valley Springs 26101 Paramount Drive Dr, Tehachapi, CA 93561-7038 3 2 2237 1.49 $399,000.00
Country Oaks 20951 La Barranca Dr, Tehachapi, CA 93561-7754 4 2 2396 2.12 $410,000.00
Golden Hills East 20217 Weston Ave, Tehachapi, CA 93561-7925 4 2 1632 0.23 $283,000.00
Bear Valley Springs 25620 Deertrail Dr, Tehachapi, CA 93561-7493 3 3 2368 4.04 $315,000.00
Tehachapi City 14556 E Tehachapi Blvd #147, Tehachapi, CA 93561-9003 3 2 1344 0.1 $63,000.00
Golden Hills East 20424 Del Rio Way, Tehachapi, CA 93561-8709 3 2 1248 0.17 $240,000.00
Golden Hills West 21276 White Pine Dr #71, Tehachapi, CA 93561-9532 3 2 1344 0.11 $152,500.00

3 Things to Look for in Your First Investment Property

If you’ve decided that an investment property is the right purchase for you, there are three things you’ll want to consider before you sign the contract on your first fixer-upper or rental unit.

  1. Location. You might have found a great property, but is it in an attractive location where other people would like to live? Make sure you really check out the neighborhood to make sure it is in a desirable area. It could be the perfect house, but if no one wants to live in that area, you are not going to be able to make any money. An experienced realtor will have the insight to help you find the perfect spot for a successful investment property.
  2. How much work does it really need? Before you put an offer in, you need to have a very clear picture of all of the work (and money!) this property requires. If this is your first time rehabbing a house, bring a contractor with you to give you their honest opinion of all of the projects that need to be done. A property may appear to only need cosmetic changes, but there could be larger foundation issues (for example) that aren’t obvious right away. Don’t make a bad purchase that will end up costing you money!
  3. The Real Costs. Making a decision based on emotion is a big mistake that many first time investors make. Beyond the purchase price and renovation costs, you’ll need to consider property taxes, insurance, and operating costs. Be honest and realistic about what your investment will cost now, before it’s too late.

Remember: A smart rental investment property is one that appreciates in value. A great realtor has insight into different communities that are perfect for investments. Ready to start the hunt for an investment property that will make you money? We’d love to help!

Tehachapi Weekly Real Estate Sales Report ~ Feb. 18, 2019 – Feb. 24, 2019

Area Address Bedrooms Bathrooms Sq. Ft. Acres Selling Price
County 22008 Old Town Rd, Tehachapi, CA 93561-8887 4 3 2570 2.91 $410,000.00
Tehachapi City 1005 Cypress Way, Tehachapi, CA 93561-2308 2 2 1502 0.19 $250,000.00
Stallion Springs 18211 Morgan Ct, Tehachapi, CA 93561 4 3 3630 3.94 $334,000.00
Golden Hills East 22924 Rim Way, Tehachapi, CA 93561-8218 3 2 1279 0.48 $238,000.00

4 Thoughtful Home Updates Buyers will LOVE

If you are thinking about listing your home for sale, it might feel overwhelming to think about updates you need to make before you get it on the market. We’ve rounded up four ways to make your home really standout to buyers – and they are easy!

Give Them Curb Appeal. Freshen up your landscape, pull weeds, mow the lawn, trim the bushes and lay down fresh mulch to give potential buyers the best first impression as possible! Refresh the paint on your door (and maybe pick a new pop of color!) to invite them in. Add some hanging baskets on your front porch with beautiful, colorful flowers, and put a new, clean welcome mat at your door.

Exterior

Replace Bathroom Mirrors. A sure sign of an outdated bathroom are old, gross mirrors. Replacing them with something more modern and new will freshen up the space. Other bathroom tips? Replace the shower curtain (with something clean and neutral) and switch out your linens with new white towels. Replacing your bathroom fixtures like faucets and shower heads will also go a long way!

bathroom

Install Ceiling Fans. Buyers love practical and beautiful ceiling fans. If your home does not already have them, consider adding them to your living room and bedrooms.

ceiling fans

Tone Down Bright Colors. While you don’t need to repaint your entire house, if you have some rooms with especially loud colors (think: kid’s rooms), consider repainting them to something more neutral. Chances are the buyers would be planning to do this anyway, so cross this off their to-do list from the start.

colorful interior

If you are thinking of putting your home on the market, we’d love to help you get ready! Our agents have a ton of knowledge about what Tehachapi buyers are looking for and would be happy to talk to you about how you can make your home stand out. Contact us here to get started!

Associated Real Estate Agent Spotlight: Meet Jutta Thacker

Each month, we’re highlighting one of the amazing real estate agents here at Associated Real Estate!

Meet Jutta Thacker!

Jutta Thacker

  1. Where did you grow up? Tell us about your family!

I was born and raised in Germany where I met my husband. He was stationed there during his time in the United States Air Force. After spending many years living abroad in Germany, the Netherlands and Saudi Arabia, we moved to Tehachapi in 2002, where we raised three children, Nina, Katja and Casey.

  1. Have you always been in real estate or did you have a different career prior to becoming a real estate agent?

After working in retail for many years, I got my real estate license in 2003 and became an agent. While working at Coldwell Banker I was awarded Top Producing Associate, Top Selling Associate, Top Listing Associate and Multi-Million Dollar Producer.

  1. What’s your favorite thing about Tehachapi?

I love the small town feel but am definitely excited about Walmart coming to town! I also love the low crime rate of Tehachapi.

  1. What is your number one piece of advice for someone trying to sell their house?

The most important thing to do is declutter and sell unwanted furniture to make the house presentable for showings. Determine potential fixes before listing and price the home correctly.

  1. What do you think is the most important thing for clients to know about buying a house?

That the first step is to get pre-qualified!

  1. Where is your favorite place in the world?

The Mexican Rivera. We took a cruise there a couple years ago and I really liked it.

  1. What do you love about being a real estate agent?

I love helping my clients find their dream home. Providing the highest quality of service possible while building lasting relationships at the same time is one of the most wonderful things about being a real estate agent.

Want to work with Jutta? Contact her here!

Tehachapi Guide for Dog Owners

Moving to Tehachapi with your dog? We’re so happy to welcome you and your 4-legged family member to our beautiful community! We’ve put together a resource guide to help make your move to Tehachapi with your dog as easy as possible.

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(Josh and DeVerie Riley’s dog Lucy)

Dog Parks

  1. Meadowbrook Dog Park
  2. Bear Valley Springs Dog Park

Dog-Friendly Restaurants

  1. Red House BBQ
  2. Petra Mediterranean Deli
  3. Kohnen’s Country Bakery
  4. Village Grill 

Dog-Friendly Wineries

  1. Triassic Vineyards

Veterinarians

  1. Tehachapi Veterinary Hospital
  2. Billingsley Veterinary Clinic

Dog Boarding

  1. Tehachapi Pet Lodge
  2. Happy Trails Boarding and Pet Grooming

Grooming

  1. Canine Creek Pet Wash and Grooming
  2. Grooming Spot
  3. Devan Yates
  4. Dorrie The Groomer
  5. Wizard of Happy Paws Dog Grooming

Is there something that we missed on our list? Leave a comment below and we’ll be sure to add it!

Tehachapi dog resource guide

(Lindsey Redera’s dogs Dexter and Rivet)

Tehachapi Weekly Real Estate Sales Report ~ Jan. 28, 2019 – Feb. 4, 2019

Area Address Bedrooms Bathrooms Sq. Ft. Acres Selling Price
Tehachapi City 1327 Clasico Dr, Tehachapi, CA 93561 3 2 1834 0.1809 $322,900.00
Stallion Springs 30850 Dapple Grey Ct, Tehachapi, CA 93561-5424 2 2 2078 0.9 $206,000.00
Stallion Springs 27900 Crofun Rd, Tehachapi, CA 93561-5256 3 2 2028 0.29 $290,000.00
Bear Valley Springs 27201 Oakflat Dr, Tehachapi, CA 93561-9269 3 3 1285 1.23 $190,000.00
Golden Hills East 19900 Meadows Rd, Tehachapi, CA 93561-8265 3 2 1822 0.29 $296,000.00
Caliente 200 Piute Meadows Rd, Caliente, CA 93518-4827 2 2 2601 18.84 $130,000.00
Tehachapi City 1449 Wild Olive Rd, Tehachapi, CA 93561-8987 4 3 2543 0.16 $335,000.00
Sand Canyon 24370 Lalaponzi Ct, Tehachapi, CA 93561-9331 2 2 1440 5.19 $159,000.00
Bear Valley Springs 25640 Paramount Dr, Tehachapi, CA 93561-8389 3 2 2065 1.11 $300,000.00
Bear Valley Springs 26651 Columbia Way, Tehachapi, CA 93561-9224 3 3 3083 2.05 $600,000.00

4 Yummy Dips for Your Super Bowl Party!

Whether you watch the Super Bowl for the actual game, the halftime show, commercials, or are just here for the snacks, we can all agree that the food is the real MVP of the game! Here are 4 easy and YUMMY dips to make this weekend!

  1. Brat and Beer Cheese Dip

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2. Corn and Green Chile Dip

Corn-and-Green-Chile-Dip-1

3. Loaded Baked Potato Dip

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4. Stuffed Crust Pizza Dip

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What are you making for the big game on Sunday? Comment below and let us know!