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  • Cathi & Ben Walter
  • Sales & Marketing Specialist, Realtor
  • 44530 San Pablo, Suite 101
  • Palm Desert, CA 92260
  • P: (760) 218 – 5752
  • F:
  • E: Cathi@DesertAreaHomeFinder.com
  • DRE# 01346930
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A Message From Cathi & Ben...

We hear similar stories repeated in different ways from our clients; At first, they look forward to stolen weekend's to golf & relax in the desert - they gradually discover they're crafting ways to spend more time here until it becomes clear, life just doesn't get any better than this."

Once that realization hit's, the process of change begins... We know what an extraordinary commodity your home is - buying or selling a home can be one of the most important decisions you will make and having the right team on your side will make the difference.

We specialize in homes throughout the Palm Springs Valley including Palm Desert Real Estate & Homes, Indian Wells Real Estate & Homes, La Quinta Real Estate & Homes, Rancho Mirage Real Estate & Homes, Palm Springs Real Estate & Homes& Indio Hills Real Estate & Homes. Whether you want to buy or sell an estate, lock & leave property with income potential, a resort property, land to build your dream home, or a property located in a country club or golf community we know the desert and are here to help. Our motto, If its important to you, it's important to us, guides us as we help our clients buy or sell a home in the desert.

Thank you for visiting DesertAreaHomeFinder.com, we hope you find our site helpful and we look forward to speaking with you it's easy, just click on the picture of a cell phone in the upper right corner of this web site and it will ring our cell phone directly.

Personal Messages

Special Function Room Trends

Special Function Room Trends
Every year, the American Institute of Architects (AIA) conducts a series of surveys of more than 500 leading Architectural firms to uncover trends in new home design. Here are some of their conclusions from the home features study on Special Function Room Trends.

 

Special Function Room Trends Outdoor Living SpaceOutdoor Living Space
According to the AIA recent Home Trends Survey, the most popular special room isn’t a room inside the house, but rather outside.  Outdoor Living Space is the most requested Special Function Room Trends. Since the average lot size is much bigger than the home’s footprint, the Outdoor Space can offer a great opportunity for Outdoor Living. In the past three years of the survey, the respondents said Outdoor Living Space was gaining popularity faster than any other feature.

Mud RoomSpecial Function Room Trends Mud Room
With the rise in popularity of Outdoor Living Spaces, it seems natural a Mudroom would be the next feature increasing in popularity. When spending all this time outside;  a room in where you can remove dirty clothes and shoes becomes a valuable space. The Mudroom serves as more than a place to remove muddy shoes, it also serves as a place to store the kids backpacks, hang coats, dog leashes, or store gardening tools. A Mudroom is a great way to help keep the house clean and free from clutter. Fortunately, Mudrooms don’t have to take up a lot of space, they can combine with other spaces like the Laundry Room.

Special Function Room Trends Home Office

Home Office
The third most common Special Function Space is the Home Office. While the Home Office has been a popular request for decades, more and more people are working from home and the demands to be constantly connected creates the necessity for a dedicated space.  The Home Office is a must have for many home buyers.

 

 

 

Pet RoomsSpecial Function Room Trends Pet Room
A new and emerging Special Function Room Trend is a  Pet Room.  More clients are asking to include Pet Rooms or Interior Kennels. Pooch-friendly technology including music, a flat-screen TV mounted on the wall, Bed, Web Cam with Audio, Pet Door with Access to outdoors, built in storage for toys, and area for food and water bowls.

 

 

 

 

In-Law SuiteSpecial Function Room Trends In law suite
An In-Law Suite also grew in number of requests. A separate Bedroom with Sitting Area, en-suite Bath and Coffee Bar / Kitchenette have grown in popularity.

 

 

 

 

Main Floor Master BedroomSpecial Function Room Trends Main floor Master
More people are choosing to age in place and having a Main floor Master Bedroom is essential to being able to stay in your home. The main floor Master has become one of the top requested Special Features home buyers are ask for.

 

 

 

Special Function Room Trends Man Cave She ShedShe Shed / Man Cave
A dedicated space to escape and enjoy a special hobby is a fun addition and can add a Wow Factor for home buyers. Something as simple as converting a spare bedroom can work.  

 

 

If you’re thinking about remodeling your home, and want to make sure you’re adding value that matters most to home buyers, think about incorporating some of the top requested Special Function Rooms into your remodel plan.

 

 

 

Agua Caliente Plans New Sports Arena

Agua-Caliente Arena

The Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians plans to build a 10,000-seat arena in the heart of Palm Springs for ice hockey and live entertainment.

The new facility will be north of the tribe’s downtown casino and two blocks from the desert city’s main drag. The arena project will be developed on the tribal property north of the Agua Caliente Casino Palm Springs, generally between Amado Road on the south, Alejo Road on the north, Calle Encilia on the west, and Calle El Segundo on the east.

Agua-Caliente Arena

Tribal Chairman Jeff L. Grubbe said in a phone interview that the partnership was more than a year in the works and came about because Oak View Group was looking for a home for the expansion team. The Coachella Valley’s large number of winter residents from Canada made it a natural fit.

Tim Leiweke, CEO and co-founder of Oak View Group, said the projected cost of the arena, training center and hockey team is $250 million. Tribal Chairman Jeff L. Grubbe said the arena will be privately funded, exclusively by the tribe and Oak View Group.

Live Nation Entertainment also has signed on as a strategic partner with the project and will “supply the new arena with its large stable of top touring artists and premium live events,” according to a news release.

Grubbe said he doesn’t have details on what the arena would look like yet, and not to expect renderings any time soon. He did say that the arena would be state of the art and would fit in with the overall look of downtown Palm Springs.

Groundbreaking and construction is scheduled to begin in February 2020, according to the tribe. The arena is expected to open by fall 2021 in time for the hockey season.

Barker Dam Trail: Joshua Tree National Park

Barker Dam Trail

Barker Dam, is a water-storage facility located in Joshua Tree National Park in California. The dam was constructed by early cattlemen, including CO Barker, in 1900. It was raised in 1949 by rancher William F. Keys. It is situated between Queen Valley and the Wonderland of Rocks near the Wall Street Mill. It is a gathering place for desert wildlife, including many species of birds and Desert Bighorn Sheep.

 

Barker Dam TrailVisitors can reach the Barker Dam via a short trail from a nearby parking lot and can see Native American petroglyphs a short distance to the west. There is also good bouldering on side trails near the dam. The park offers a Barker Dam Nature Hike led by a ranger.

The lowest 9 feet (2.7 m) of the dam, the original portion, was constructed of concrete surfaced with stone on the downstream side. The height of the dam was raised an additional six feet with concrete in 1949–1950. The dam has several indentations. An inscription at top reads: Big Horn Dam Built by Willis Keys, W.F. Keyes, Phyllis M. Keys, 1949–1950.

Barker Dam Trail

The start of the trail is well marked, and if you are driving in your car, there are signs around the park that will direct you to the area where the trailhead starts. There is also a large parking lot by the trailhead and this area is busier if you come on a weekend, as it is one of the most well known and family-friendly hikes in the park.

The trail itself is less than a mile and half round trip, and it is a loop so that you never see the same thing twice. As soon as you get out of your car and start the trail, you immediately enter into an area with large rocks surrounding you on both sides.

Barker Dam Trail

The trail winds around for a little bit before dropping you out in a wide open area that makes up Barker Dam. The Barker Dam itself was really cool, primarily because it was so old and was still in working condition. I also enjoyed seeing the sign right at the top of the dam that was carved in the concrete from the brothers that helped build it.

DIRECTIONS: Turn east off Park Boulevard on Barker Dam Road towards Hidden Valley Campground. The turnoff is located 9 miles south of the west entrance station and 1.6 miles north of the intersection with Keys View Road. Continue on the paved road for 2.8 miles to a large parking area.

For current park conditions
visit JTNP Website or Call 760 367-5522

Desert Real Estate Market Update

The Coachella Valley Real Estate Market is Strong. 

When we look at prices now compared to one year ago, we see that detached home prices are up 4.6% and attached home prices are up 7.3% from last year.  Eight of Nine Valley cities saw a price increase.

Detached and Attach Home Prices by City

The total number of sales have slowed a bit from last year, down about 5.3%. Detached homes were down about 4% while Attached homes, which saw a bigger price increase, has had a bigger dip in the number of sales, down about 7.6%.

Number of Home Sales for Detached and Attached

When we look at the number of sales by Price Range, we see that the majority of the sales are between $200,000 – $500,000.  The largest dip in number of sales is in the $800,000 – $1m price range, then picking up again over $1m.  However, when we compare the number of sales year over year by price bracket, we see that the largest dip in the number of sales in 2019 was below $400,000. From $500,000 and up the number of sales were at about par over last year.

Number of Sales by Price Range

Currently there are about 3,600 homes listed for sale in the Valley, about the same as this time last year. This is a seasonal market; you can see the pattern on the chart below.  We reach our lowest inventory levels in September every year and gradually increase to an annual peak in February and March.

Housing Inventory

Breaking down the inventory levels; it’s no surprise that the lowest inventory levels are in the $200,000 – $400,000 price range.  The month’s supply starts climbing over $500,000. Based on the current number of homes listed for sale divided by the number of sales each month, if no new inventory entered the market, we see there is a 6 month supply in the $500,000 – $600,000 range.  About a 7 month supply for homes priced between $700,000 – $900,000 and a 13 month supply for homes priced over $1m.

Months Supply by price range

Based on price trends, the number of sales, inventory levels and low interest rates, we can say the Coachella Valley Real Estate Market is Strong.  The trends we see suggest that we will continue to see a strong real estate market throughout 2019 and into 2020.

If you would like more detailed market information about your city, your community, or your home specifically, give us a ring – we’re on standby to help.   (760) 218 – 5752

Positioning Your Home for HENRYs

HENRYMeet HENRY — “high earners not rich yet” — the term was first coined by Fortune Magazine and describes a niche subset of the population that represents the next generation of wealth. the most important demographic consumer segment that you’ve probably never heard of.

Today, HENRYs are largely millennial’s (and some younger members of Gen X) who earn an annual household income of more than $100,000. These top earners are well on their way to becoming tomorrow’s affluent consumer.  HENRYs are the heavy lifters in the consumer economy. If 70 percent of the U.S. GDP is consumer spending, then the HENRYs are the key driver in that figure.  They make up only about 18 percent of the total U.S. households, but account for roughly 40 percent of total spending.

Millennials life paths differ from previous generations when it comes to deciding when to get married and start a family.  Travel and Experiences are more important to them and they place a premium on both. It should come as no surprise, then, that the way in which millennial HENRYs make their buying decisions, and specifically when it comes to buying a home, also differs from generations past.

Inside the mind of the HENRYs

It’s worth noting that the American dream of home-ownership is still very much alive and well for millennial HENRYs. According our recent study, 97 percent of millennial HENRYs either own a home or plan to buy a home, while nearly three-quarters either already own or plan to own a second home.

However, HENRYs are changing the traditional definitions and attributes associated with luxury, and specifically as it relates to what a luxury home means to them. When asked what makes a brand luxury, 80 percent said superior quality.

Luxury Doesnt Necessarily Mean Expensive
Only 47 percent said a premium price.

The top indicator of a luxury home as identified by 68 percent millennial HENRY’s is finishes.  Location and amenities were ranked as the second and third most important factors in determining what makes for a luxury property, by millennial HENRYs.

Luxury Garage Luxury Home Finishes

Millennial HENRYs are willing to pay for what they want and value in a home, i.e. finishes, neighborhood, amenities, etc., but that luxury isn’t determined by price tag alone. Rather, for this demographic, luxury means a home that suits their unique preferences and needs, and beyond that, the lifestyle they want to achieve.

Whether that means living in a chalet at the base of a mountain year-round in Aspen, or a beach side bungalow on Hilton Head Island, HENRYs are precisely curating their lifestyles to reflect their unique preferences.

Luxury is more than just a property — it’s the enjoyment of life according to their unique and personal definition of luxury.

For more information about targeting the HENRYs when selling your home, give me a ring (760) 218 – 5752 or drop me a line, Cathi@DesertAreaHomeFinder.com  Our strategic marketing positions your home for this niche demographic.
Cathi Walter - DesertAreaHomeFinder.com

Desert Real Estate Market Report

DESERT REAL ESTATE MARKET REPORT
2018 Year in Review

As we start 2019, it’s time to take look back at how the Desert Real Estate Market performed last year and look for developing trends.

Home Prices are Up

In 2018, there were 5,836 single family home sales throughout the Coachella Valley. Those homes sold at an average of $610,300 and an average of $260. / Sq Ft.  Homes that were priced correctly for the market, sold on average in 89 days.  The highest sale price in 2018 was $12,000,000 for a home located in The Madison in La Quinta.

With those statistics, we compared 2018 sales to the previous year and found that while the number of sales were down slightly overall, (2%), Selling Prices were up 10% and the price / sq ft was up 8%. The time it took to sell was down 10% from the year prior.  The highest priced home sale in 2017 was $8,700,000. for a home located in The Vintage Country Club in Indian Wells.

When we look at the performance of each individual city; prices are up across the valley with two stand-outs – Palm Desert had a 20% price increase and La Quinta had a 15% price increase.

While prices are up, inventories remain low as compared to this time of season in years past.  Historically when the  inventory of homes for sale is low, prices tend to rise due to the pressures of supply and demand.

Interest rates also play an important role in how markets perform; rates are still low despite the fact that the Fed gave us 4 rate increases in 2018.  As rates increase, buyers can afford less house for the same mortgage payment, which ultimately puts downward pressure on home prices.

But good news, rates pulled back a bit this week. Conforming loans, (up to $484,350) for a 30 year fixed rate is still just 4.47%.

The Coachella Valley has long been viewed as a destination for the soon to retire and already retired home buyers looking for an active lifestyle, but with the increase in mobile commuting, people can work from anywhere.  We’re also seeing more young home buyers who are looking for a quality lifestyle, moving to the Desert full time.  Easy Freeway and International Airport access makes that possible.

Combine the Lifestyle that only the Coachella Valley offers along with affordable home prices – the Valley is and will continue to be a destination for both full time residents, second home buyers and

We have a strong and steady real estate market here in the Coachella Valley.

If you would like more detailed information about your neighborhood specifically, drop me a line – we just finished our  2018 “Year in Review” Market Report, I’m happy to send you a copy.

Cathi Walter
Broker Associate with Bennion Deville Homes
(760) 218-5752
Cathi@DesertAreaHomeFinder.com

 

Staging Tips – Paint Colors That Sell

Paint Colors that Sell. 

Did you know that using certain paint colors in specific rooms of your home can statistically increase the value by as much as $10,000?  Sounds incredible, but it’s been proven true. According to an exhaustive study done by Zillow, they looked at more than 32,000 photos from sold homes around the country. They compared how certain paint colors impacted the sale price on average, when compared to homes with white walls.

Homes with Blue Bathrooms sell for $5,400 more than expected. Listings with cool, neutral colors sell for more money and homes with white, yellow or red wall colors can sell for less than expected.

Paint Colors that Sell: Blue Bathrooms, found in hues of powder blue or light periwinkle, sold for the highest sales premium of all colors analyzed.  Walls painted in other cool, natural tones like pale gray or oatmeal were also among the top performing listings.

Blue Bathroom

They found that some colors may actually deter buyers; the darker more style specific wall colors such as terracotta Dining Room walls sold for $2,000 less than expected.

However, a lack of color may have the biggest negative impact.  Homes with white bathrooms sold for an average of $4,000 less than similar homes.

Paint Colors that Sell: Oatmeal, pale taupe or light beige did better in the Living Room, selling for about $1,900 more than expected.

Greige Living Room Walls

Paint Colors that Sell: The exterior color that garnered the best price premium was
“Greige”, a combination of gray and beige with the front door painted in a contrast color such as dark Gray, Navy Blue or Black.

As a Home Stylist, we are here to help with the latest information on trends that we see in the real estate market.  We’ve got our eye on the market so we can help elevate your home above the competition.  For more information about how our “Home Styling” will get your home sold for top dollar, give me a ring.

Cathi Walter
Broker Associate / Home Stylist

 

The Real Estate Corner Desert Market Update

The Real Estate Corner Desert Market Update

NUMBER OF SALES
September_2018_Home_Sales_by_City

Home sales are up Valley-wide.  The total three-month sales are up 2.9%.  On a city by city basis, six cities show higher sales, with three; Palm Desert, Desert Hot Springs and Palm Springs showing the largest increase in sales.

The three cities with the largest sales declines are Indio, Indian Wells and Cathedral City.

INVENTORY OF HOMES FOR SALE

September_Inventory

While home sales are up, inventories are down.  Typically our inventories dip to to their lowest point every year toward the end of September, but this year inventories are even lower.

Low inventory acts as both a positive and negative; it’s positive for sellers and future home sellers as it tends to move home prices higher.  But, it’s also a negative in that low inventory puts the brakes on the number of sales. If interest rates continue to increase, that can put a damper on sales as the cost of borrowing money for a mortgage becomes more expensive.

MONTHS SUPPLY OF HOMES FOR SALE BY CITY

Months_of_Supply

The month’s of supply ratio is down valley-wide compared to one year ago in every city.  Most have less than 4 month supply except two; La Quinta which currently has a 4.5 month supply and Indian Wells with a 6 month supply of homes to sell.

MONTHS SUPPLY OF HOMES FOR SALE BY PRICE BRACKETS
When we look at the supply of homes by price category, we see the supply is lower across all price brackets compared to one year ago.  The biggest change is homes priced above $800,000.  Last year the higher price points were taking 7.5 months – 1 year to sell.  Now, it’s taking on average 5.3 – 8 months

Months_Supply_by_Price_Range

The tipping point when using this metric is 6 month’s.  6 months is considered a “Balanced Market”, not particularly favoring either Home Buyers or Home Sellers.  Less than 6 months, the market is tipped in the Sellers favor, otherwise known as a “Sellers Market”.  More than 6 month supply is viewed as a “Buyers Market”.

As home prices or the cost of buying a home, (rising interest rates), increase – sales will start to slow putting downward pressure on pricing.  Markets are always in a state of flux, moving from one market to another and rarely stopping at “balanced” for long.

While there is typically a lag period between market shifts, the lag time is shorter as the number of sales are increasing.  Home sellers quickly see an improving market and strive to maximize the price they can ask.  When prices increase too fast or too far ahead of sales, potential home buyer’s become reluctant to make offers, fearing they could be buying at the peak.

DISCOUNT FROM ASKING PRICE

Sale_price_discount_from_asking_price

In 2018, when negotiating a sale price with buyers; home sellers are discounting their listed price an average of 2%.  One year ago, sellers needed to discount an average 2.4% off their asking price to close a sale.

For example, this ratio means if a home is listed at $400,000 it’s selling at an average of 98% of their asking price, or $392,000. a discount of $8,000. This metric also shows a strong and improving real estate market here in the Desert.

When we look at the story each of these metrics are showing for the Desert Real Estate Market, we can see an improving but pretty balanced market.  In addition, we can see that the market has had and continues to show sustained growth. Making now the right time to be a participant in the market.

The Desert Lifestyle is unlike any other, as we head into our season now is a great time see what the Desert has to offer.  Check out these FAB Desert Homes!

 

Palm Springs Aerial Tram Road Challenge

Palm Springs Aerial Tram Road Challenge
October 27, 2018 starting at 7:00 a.m.
Palm Springs Aerial Tram Road Challenge

If you’re looking for a challenge, then this event is for you!  The Palm Springs Aerial Tram Road Challenge 6K run / walk starts at 400 ft elevation and climbs to over 2,600 ft elevation.  This is not your typical weekend 5k.  This is the 32nd annual event with more than 1,500 participants from around the world come together each year to take the challenge.

Nestled at the base of the San Jacinto Mountains, Palm Springs is known for its crystal blue skies, year-round sunshine, palm tree lined streets and starry nights. Home to the Annual Palm Springs International Film Festival & Modernism Week, Palm Springs has fun & entertainment for all ages.  Be a part of what makes Palm Springs the place to be, check out these FAB Homes for sale in Palm Springs

Halloween Chili Cook Off and Car Show

Halloween Chili Cook Off and Car Show at the Palm Springs Air Museum
October 27 from 11:00 – 2:00

chili cook off ps air museum

Join the fun at the Palm Springs Air Museum’s 11th Annual Chili Cook-Off and Car Show.  Volunteers from the Museum cook up their favorite recipes and you decide who’s is the best.  It’s a goolish feast for the eyes and the tummy.

Palm Springs is known for its crystal blue skies, year-round sunshine, palm tree lined streets and starry nights. Home to the Annual Palm Springs International Film Festival & Modernism Week, Shopping, Fun and Entertainment for all ages.  Be a part of the Palm Springs Lifestyle, check out these FAB homes in Palm Springs

 

 

Get In Touch

  • Cathi & Ben Walter
  • REALTOR ®
  • 44530 San Pablo, Suite 101
  • Palm Desert, CA 92260
  • P: (760) 218 – 5752
  • E: Cathi@DesertAreaHomeFinder.com
  • CalBRE# 01346930

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