ChrisSampaio, Author at Loftway : Loftway


Garden Ideas for Los Angeles Lofts

10 Apr 2017 · by ChrisSampaio

UntitledDo you ever dream of picking fresh fruit, veggies, or herbs from your home? Or maybe even having some beautiful flowery scenery right outside your door? Those who live in Los Angeles lofts may not consider the possibility of having a garden due to lack of space and earth. Yet, having a garden is possible. Plus, Los Angeles is a great place to grow a variation of plants, because let’s be honest, the weather is almost always perfect.

Here’s how to do it:

Choose your location

First, you need to choose your garden space. Pick a spot on your balcony that will get enough sunlight, but not too much. Usually the best growing areas face east or west, because the morning and evening sun will be the most prominent in those areas.

However, if you are limited on space and only have one small location for your garden, then almost any area should work.

Choose your garden type

The fun thing about gardening is that you have so many options and none of them are wrong. For example, you can create a box garden, hanging baskets, or just a simple pot garden. DIY tutorials abound, sodon’t be afraid to get creative with it.

Different types of gardens also have different uses. For example, a box garden is typically used more for fruits, vegetables, and starches (such as potatoes).

Box gardens are constructed from lumber and can be made in many different sizes. You have the option of making a 4 ft. x 4 ft. box, a 2 ft. x 6 ft. box, or a 3 ft. x 5 ft. box. Box gardens are also less prone to getting those annoying weeds, which may also be the case for hanging baskets.

If you decide to use a hanging basket, remember they dry out quickly. If you don’t have a watering system for your hanging baskets, then watering daily is a necessity. Unless, of course you plant succulents, which require less frequent watering as they are desert plants. If you plant succulents, then watering about twice a week will suffice. Succulents are not only perfect for hanging baskets, but are great for ground-sitting pots.

Ground pots are perfect for small herbs and flowers. The nice thing about pots is they can fit in smaller places. If your loft’s balcony doesn’toffer much space, then pots are probably a good option for you.

No matter what you choose, your garden can be beautiful, and after a Saturday afternoon of work, you can have the start of some delicious homegrown fruits and vegetables, or the aesthetic of a succulent garden. People will also be surprised and thrilled that you grew them while living in one of the many beautiful downtown LA lofts. So, don’t be afraid to start your garden. Give it a chance and have some fun.

HAPPY GARDENING!




The Loftway Report 2017

13 Jan 2017 · by ChrisSampaio

The Loftway Report is out again and there is a lot of good info there to educate buyers and sellers in Downtown LA. If you need help making sense of the report please call us.

DOWNLOAD THE FULL REPORT

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Best Places to Trick or Treat in LA

24 Oct 2016 · by ChrisSampaio
cedf4e63cd55a71e29ae990eaf1c993b

1. Cheviot Hills: This is an affluent community on L.A.’s tony West Side, just south of Fox Studios and Century City. It’s a very family-oriented neighborhood, known for being extremely safe. (When was the last time you heard about a crime being committed here?) A drive down Motor reveals numerous jack-o’-lanterns, bats and black cats smiling at you, inviting the little ones to stroll up the walk and enjoy.

2. Pacific Palisades: OK, you will encounter a few hills here and some of the streets may be narrow, but in most areas the houses are situated relatively close together, and the neighborhoods are extremely clean and family friendly. Your kids can fill their bags with healthy treats in a very short time. Believe it or not, this is the area where you’re most likely to see celebs trick-or-treating with their kids — if you can recognize them behind their masks.

3. Studio City: “The Valley” may not be perceived as upscale as L.A.’s West Side is, but consider the fact that a lot of set designers and makeup artists live here, and Halloween is their favorite holiday. Residents go all out creating professional-level spooky environs, and they come up with generous treats to go with them. The Colfax Meadows area is especially good.

4. Santa Monica: Stick with the posh houses north of Montana for the best (albeit healthy) treats. This is another extremely civic-minded, family-friendly area where there’s little crime, lots of luxury and the celebrities are as thick as thieves.

5. Hancock Park: This stately grand dame of a neighborhood near Hollywood has been an established Halloween mecca for generations. You’ll want to concentrate on Arden Boulevard, Rossmore Avenue and the Larchmont shopping district for the best Halloween spirit. Know, however, that the streets tend to get congested with traffic and pedestrians, so early evening is definitely the best time for the little ones here.

6. The Flats of Beverly Hills: This area between Sunset and Santa Monica Boulevards draws thousands who come from miles around, and they’re never disappointed — unless they get a parking ticket, because it’s now illegal to park on a residential street after 6:00 unless you have a parking pass. This neighborhood is worth the drive alone just to knock on the door of the famous “Witch’s House” on Carmelita and Walden Drive.

Beverly Hills has been the long-standing Halloween favorite for years. The standing joke is that when you knock on a door in BH, the owner answers with a generous treat — maybe a full-sized candy bar, or even money. Then he says, “Wait … what did the neighbors give you?” Nobody likes to be outdone in that neck of the woods.




Looking at the Loft numbers

30 Sep 2016 · by ChrisSampaio

Lately the market has been a bit slow in Downtown LA. The number of listings increased from 100 properties for sale to around 150 now. 150 still not a huge number and even though is a 50% increase in inventory we are still lacking places to sell. DTLA is a particular market one building can be really overheated and selling like hot cakes and the building next door can have many listings sitting stale. I wanted to measure whats happening with the market and decided to look at some graphics.This is what I found:

sales

 

 

 

 

 

This shows how many Lofts for sale in a 3 year period. As you can see the inventory is growing. It kind of goes up and down so is hard to analyze, but we are on the high side now.

sold

 

 

 

 

 

This shows the sales. As you can see The months of February thru June are the best months to sell and that repeats far over year. This year we had less sales than the previous ones.

price

 

 

 

 

 

This one shows the prices. As you can see prices Go up in February and have been dipping lately.




Downtown Weekly Cover Page Ad

2 Sep 2016 · by ChrisSampaio

Our new AD at the Downtown Weekly is out. Its a full color page on the back cover.

This is a monthly ad where we can display our listings and provide maximum exposure for our clients Loft Listings.

With this AD  we fulfill our promise and commitment on expending more marketing dollars than any of our competition in order to market our listings.

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Brokerage and site updates

19 Aug 2016 · by ChrisSampaio

Logo New

In the next days we will be updating the neighborhood pages on the site. I will be adding pictures (somehow they disappeared in one of the updates) and some personal recommendations of places to go in each area.

We are also updating the mobile version of the site, to look simpler, have larger pictures and to be easier to navigate.

We will be removing the search box from the front page and making more streamlined with just two buttons “Search Lofts For Sale” and “Search Lofts for Lease”.

We also implemented Real Scout on the back end and our single property email alerts are more in sync with our brand, I am sure our buyer will appreciate the new interface.

We secured a full back page color ad which will run every month at the Downtown Weekly newspaper where we will display our listings and other info.

We are always implementing in the front end and back end to make things easier and better for YOU!




What are the Best Times to Buy, List and Sell a Loft?

1 Jun 2016 · by ChrisSampaio

buyers-marketBy Jennifer Riner, Zillow

Navigating the housing market can be tricky, especially if you’re new to real estate. But, with a little research, you can avoid the mishaps that commonly occur as a new Loft buyer or seller trying to maximize your dollar and keep your buying or selling power at its peak.

Keep these tips in mind when determining the most opportune times to buy, list and sell a property.

Buying

You might be a new Loft buyer or a seasoned Homeowner, but choosing the right season to buy depends on the current market. Keeping up with the latest research trends – especially those revolving around your local market – is the first step in ensuring a good investment strategy.

With rents climbing to historical highs, especially in coastal markets, it might make sense to take advantage of low mortgage rates.

Traditionally, most experts agree the best time to buy Lofts is in the spring and fall seasons. Typically, this is when inventory tends to increase, allowing buyers more options and sometimes more leverage in terms of bargaining power.

Listing

Timing the listing of a Loft is more specific – imagine when buyers search Lofts online. Sundays are considered prime time for showings, but listings often hit the markets on late Thursday and Friday afternoons so house hunters have time to plan their weekends accordingly.

But to stand out, consider listing on Monday or Tuesday. Potential buyers unhappy with the previous days’ open houses will be searching for new listings and you can gain the largest scope of interested buyers throughout the week. Keep the open house on Sunday to make sure everyone has an opportunity to see your Loft in person.

Zillow offers a Best Time to List tool so sellers know how much sale price can fluctuate month by month based on their ZIP code as well as historical listing, transaction and Zestimate data in each local market.

Selling

Sellers should avoid the holiday season and the winter, although enthusiastic buyers rarely keep to seasonal trends. But, bear in mind, eager buyers aren’t in every city. Buyers searching for Lofts in San Francisco might be more inclined to move in January because the weather is mild and the market is hot. On the flipside, the Chicago real estate market is cooler in the winter, as are the temperatures – making relocation a bit of a hassle.

But no matter the season, make sure to consider how long your Loft remains on the market. Having it on the market for too long is a red flag to buyers. Come spring, buyers who were searching in the winter are weary of stale listings, and may assume there is something wrong with the property other house hunters have scoped out already.

Being new to the real estate game is stressful, but there’s no reason you can’t be successful from the start. If you’re feeling lost, consult a real estate professional in your area for more information on how to properly buy, list or sell according to market trends.




Incredible L.A. Arts District Tour

18 Apr 2016 · by ChrisSampaio

2016-artsdistrictflyer-complete-revised-final-withyearWe are doing it again. Loftway is partnering up with the Downtown Los Angeles Rotary Club for another LOFT tour for Charity. This time we are touring Lofts in the Arts Districts and we are also including commercial spaces. Make sure you get your tickets early because they usually sell out. You can get tickets on this link: TICKETS

 

 




The Loftway Report 2016

9 Feb 2016 · by ChrisSampaio

Out annual Loftway Report is out and there are some amazing findings there. Loft and Condo Sales in 2015. Get a full copy HERE

Loftway_Report 2016




This mortgage trick could save you thousands

28 Jan 2016 · by ChrisSampaio

MW-BY958_pfcoll_MG_20140409141359From USA Today

For many, Homeownership represents the ultimate American Dream. And for most of these people, the way to achieve that dream is to take out a mortgage in order to finance that Loft.

Here’s the problem: When you take out a 30-year mortgage, which many of us do, you wind up paying more interest than you may have realized. Let’s say you’ve got a 30-year, $200,000 fixed mortgage at 5% interest. If you make your monthly payment as required, then you’ll wind up paying a total of $186,512 in interest over time, which is almost as much as the principal.

See, when you make a mortgage payment, a portion of that money goes toward the principal amount of your loan, and the other part goes toward interest. During the early years of your mortgage, your payments will primarily go toward interest, but over time, your principal payments will increase, and your interest payments will decrease. That’s because you’re charged interest based on your outstanding principal.

So how do you save money on those interest charges? It’s simple: Pay down that principal sooner. That sounds painfully obvious, but you may not realize there’s a relatively painless way to do it.

Biweekly payments
Of course, if you had a large chunk of cash available, you probably would’ve taken out a smaller mortgage in the first place. But here’s an easy way to chip away at that principal more quickly. Instead of making your regular monthly payment, take that amount, divide it in two, and pay it every two weeks.

Using our example, your $200,000 mortgage at 5% would translate into a monthly payment of $1,073.64. If you take that figure and divide it by two, you’re looking at a payment of $536.82 every two weeks. What’ll happen over the course of a year is that you’ll end up making the equivalent of one extra monthly payment, except you won’t miss that money nearly as much as you would if you forked over a lump sum of cash to pay down your mortgage.

Now watch what happens next: Instead of paying $186,511 in interest over the course of your loan, you’ll wind up paying just $151,787 by making biweekly payments. That’s almost $35,000 in savings right there. Not only that, but you’ll also shave close to five years off the life of your loan.

Entering retirement debt-free
Aside from saving yourself loads of money in interest charges, paying off your mortgage early could also spell the difference between carrying that debt into retirement and leaving the workforce debt-free. In 2011, an estimated 6.1 million Loftowners 65 and older were still making monthly mortgage payments, whereas a decade prior, only about half as many people in that same age group still carried mortgage debt. Many people who plan for retirement do so with the assumption that their monthly expenses will go down once they’ve left the workforce, but if you’re still liable for a mortgage payment, then you could find yourself financially squeezed.

Lump-sum payments
Of course, if you find you’re able to apply a lump-sum payment toward your mortgage, then you can achieve the same goal of paying off your loan more quickly and save yourself thousands of dollars in interest payments.

Say you receive a $20,000 bonus or inheritance and you apply it to your mortgage during the first year of your loan. Rather than pay $186,511 in interest, you’ll knock your lifetime interest payments down to $131,551. In other words, putting in $20,000 will actually save you close to $55,000 over time, not to mention that you’ll be able to shorten your loan by about six years.

And it doesn’t have to be a monumental amount to make a difference. Even a small extra payment here and there can really add up. Say you manage to put only $2,000 extra toward your mortgage that first year. You’ll still knock your total interest payment down to $179,954 and save a total of $6,557. Plus, you’ll shave seven months off the life of your loan.

Remember: When a bank lends you money to buy a Loft, it does so to profit. The sooner you pay down your principal, the less money you’ll lose to interest, which means you’ll have more cash available to invest for retirement, college, or whatever other life goal you see fit.




Calculating Days when giving notice

3 Jan 2016 · by ChrisSampaio

calendar

This is a topic that is always cause disagreements, either on leases or purchase agreements everyone has a different idea on how the days should be counted. The text below will clarify any doubts.

How to count days for purposes of giving notice was enacted in 1872 as Civil Code §10. It provides that the time in which any act provided by law is to be done is computed by excluding the first day, and including the last, unless the last day is a holiday, and then it is also excluded. Sundays. Holidays are defined to include Sundays: “Holidays within the meaning of this code are every Sunday and such other days as are specified or provided for as holidays in the Government Code of the State of California.” (Civ. Code §7.)
 
Holidays. Government Code §6700 (effective 1-1-16) defines holidays as:
 
Every Sunday
January 1st
The third Monday in January, known as “Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day”
February 12th, known as “Lincoln Day”
The third Monday in February
Good Friday from 12 noon until 3 p.m
March 31st, known as “Cesar Chavez Day”
The last Monday in May
July 4th
The first Monday in September
September 9th, known as “Admission Day”
The fourth Friday in September, known as “Native American Day”
The second Monday in October, known as “Columbus Day”
November 11th, known as “Veterans Day”
December 25th
Every day appointed by the President or Governor for a public fast, thanksgiving, or holiday
 
Summary. When giving a 10-day notice of a disciplinary hearing, count calendar days, excluding the first day. If the last day of the notice period falls on a Sunday or a holiday, extend the time to the next non-holiday.

 




Interest Rates are going up

4 Oct 2016 · by ChrisSampaio

The interest rates have been at all time lows for many years. So long that we are actually getting used to them being so low. Not anymore, the rates are due to go up in the next two weeks and that could make a big chunk on your mortgage payment.

If you were on the fence, now is time to act. I just locked my own rate at 3.375%, this is an amazing rate and I don’t think they will ever be that low again. Get off the fence!

See the Article below from the NY Times regarding the hike.

interestrates

Yellen Signals Fed on Track to Raise Rates in December

Fed chief says gains in labor market bolster her confidence that inflation will return to 2%

Federal Reserve Chairwoman  Janet Yellen signaled she’s ready to raise short-term interest rates this month barring a surprise that shakes her confidence in the economy.

She also suggested she sees dissension within her ranks, which could complicate her moves toward ending seven years of near-zero rates.

“I don’t need unanimity. I think we have to tolerate some dissent,” Ms. Yellen said Wednesday, in answer to a question after delivering a speech on the economic outlook. “I wouldn’t try to stifle dissents, and I would even expect some at critical junctures.”

In addition to some regional Fed bank presidents, two Washington-based Fed governors have expressed hesitance about raising rates, though the consensus appears to be moving against them.

“Absent information that drastically changes the economic picture and outlook, I feel the case for liftoff is compelling,” Atlanta Fed President Dennis Lockhart said in a speech in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., on Wednesday.

The Fed, which holds its next policy meeting Dec. 15-16, has said it would raise its benchmark federal-funds rate from near zero after it saw further improvement in the job market and became reasonably confident inflation will rise toward its 2% target.

Ms. Yellen on Wednesday described an economic backdrop fitting that description, a strong hint she is leaning toward lifting rates soon. She also warned that delaying a rate increase could hurt the economy, for instance by inducing risk-taking among investors that could destabilize the financial system.

“On balance, economic and financial information received since our October meeting has been consistent with our expectations of continued improvement in the labor market,” Ms. Yellen said in her speech. “Continuing improvement in the labor market helps strengthen confidence that inflation will move back to our 2% objective over the medium term.”

The latest economic data underscore Ms. Yellen’s optimism.

On Wednesday, the Labor Department reported inflation-adjusted hourly compensation for workers in the nonfarm business sector rose 3.4% in the third quarter compared with the same quarter a year ago, the second-largest jump since the third quarter of 2009. That comes after hourly compensation grew 3.3% in the second quarter over the same quarter of 2014.

Other wage measures have also shown improvement. Average hourly earnings of private-sector employees were 2.5% higher in October than a year before, the largest annual increase since July 2009, according to a separate Labor Department report.

“What the rest of the industry is seeing, what we are seeing as well, is just general wage-rate pressure,” Doug Benn, chief financial officer at the Cheesecake Factory Inc. chain of restaurants, told analysts in a conference call last month. “Being able to be fully staffed in an environment where there is an alternative—many alternatives for workers to go other places—it’s been a challenge.”

Still, inflation, by the Fed’s preferred measure, has run below its target for 42 consecutive months.

The Labor Department on Friday will deliver a report on November job growth and unemployment, a key final piece of data Fed officials will look at before making their rate decision. At this point, it would likely take a big disappointment in the report to give them pause.

Futures markets put a 75% probability on a quarter-percentage-point rate increase at the Fed’s meeting this month, according to the Chicago Mercantile Exchange.

Ms. Yellen’s comments, including a warning about the dangers of waiting too long to raise rates, did little to diminish those expectations.

“Were the [Fed] to delay the start of policy normalization for too long, we would likely end up having to tighten policy relatively abruptly to keep the economy from significantly overshooting both of our goals,” she said. “Such an abrupt tightening would risk disrupting financial markets and perhaps even inadvertently push the economy into recession. Moreover, holding the federal funds rate at its current level for too long could also encourage excessive risk-taking and thus undermine financial stability.”

Stocks fell after her comments. The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed down 158.67 points, or 0.9%, at 17729.68.

The Fed lowered short-term rates to near zero in December 2008 during the financial crisis, and has held them there since to support the economy through the recession and fitful recovery.

Having convinced much of the investing public that a rate increase is coming this month, Fed officials are now trying to hammer a message that they will move gradually and cautiously after that first move.

Ms. Yellen pointed to the low level of the “neutral” fed-funds rate. This is a theoretical rate that would be compatible in normal times with consistent low U.S. unemployment and steady inflation.

Before the financial crisis, this neutral rate was widely estimated to be near 4%. Adjusted for inflation that would be close to 2%.

Since the crisis, Ms. Yellen noted, the neutral rate adjusted for inflation has been below zero. In other words, the economy hasn’t been able to bear the higher rates seen in normal times because it’s been too fragile.

Ms. Yellen said she expects the neutral rate to move up slowly as the economy strengthens, but she isn’t sure if it will rise or how much. This means the Fed will move gradually and tentatively as it proceeds, to find the economy’s new balance point.

On this front, Ms. Yellen appears to have common ground with potential dissenters. Fed governor Lael Brainard, who has expressed reservations about raising rates, dedicated a speech Tuesday to the low level of the neutral fed funds rate.

“The new normal is likely to be characterized by a lower level of interest rates than in the decades preceding the crisis, which counsels a cautious and gradual approach to adjusting monetary policy,” Ms. Brainard said.