[schema type="organization" orgtype="LocalBusiness" url="http://4salebydonna.com" name="Real Estate Agent Donna Baker" description="Real Estate Agent showing homes for sale and available real estate in Monrovia, Pasadena, Arcadia the San Gabriel Valley in Southern California." city="Monrovia" state="Ca" postalcode="91016" email="donna@4salebydonna.com " phone="(626) 408-7766 "]

What do Pinocchio and Monrovia Real Estate have in Common?

The artist who conceived and painted the opening scene in Disney’s masterpiece, Pinocchio, was an old-world perfectionist. The opening shot was to employ an imaginative technical breakthrough that made it appear that the audience was swooping down out of the night sky into Geppetto’s workshop. The painting had to be distorted just so—in a way that had never been attempted.

The story goes that, after many frustrating delays, Disney’s producer had sent word that he would double the artist’s fee if he’d just hurry up. The artist refused, simply sending word, “I didn’t ask for more money. I asked for more time!”

For Monrovia real estate, it’s a story that can have analogous meaning. Everyone has his or her own reasons for listing their home, and sometimes timingis of overriding importance. When professional imperatives call for an immediate change of location or when family matters create the same urgency, a speedy sale can take on primary importance. But there can be a variety of reasons why the market fails to produce a buyer. When just lowering the asking price fails to bring about the desired result, it can create a real conundrum.

Particularly for distinctive Monrovia homes that have one-of-a-kind appeal, it might make sense to wait for a rare one-of-a-kind buyer to appear. In such situations, unlike the Disney example, it can be possible to “buy” time. One way is to examine the possibility of renting out the property. Even if the monthly rent doesn’t quite cover the mortgage, the loss can sometimes make financial sense if it allows time for the ultimate buyer to enter the market.

There are serious issues associated with such a stop-gap solution—and financial details that might make it impractical. In addition to the credit implications, there are tax repercussions— as well as the extra layer of complexity that’s added when a renter-occupied home is offered for sale. In any case, as the Washington Post noted in a feature on this solution, “…most sellers in this situation fail to think through all the factors…” that go into that decision.

It’s my job the be certain my clients are aware of the factors that are at play in not just this unusual situation, but in all Monrovia real estate dealings. I will always be ready to discuss the trade-offs and solutions to your particular circumstances. Call me for a no-obligation consultation!

What Will 2019 Bring for Monrovia Real Estate?

As Monrovia plunges fearlessly into the New Year, it’s the perfect time to present a roundup of the experts’ predictions for 2019 real estate. Last year’s national forecasts turned out to be more-or-less accurate for Monrovia real estate—probably because nothing very surprising happened. Throughout the year, despite several onslaughts by Mother Nature, the overall economy continued to bolster optimism—even counting the stock market gyrations at year’s end.

What do the majority expect for the coming year in real estate? Here’s what they are willing to commit to on the record:

MarketWatch predicts that there will be a general tilt away from seller’s market conditions to favor buyers—but just. Although acknowledging that such shifts often “lead to fewer offers and bidding wars;” this one will be mild enough that homeowners are “still likely to walk away with a decent profit in 2019 if you sell.”  

Forbes foresees that mortgage rates should continue to rise, but even so, Millennial-aged buyers will keep buying homes. The reason is oft-repeated: as they reach the age when peak household formation takes place, their need for housing will trump the price obstacle. Although first-timers will struggle, older Millennials will “have more options in higher-end tiers.”

The Realtor website agrees—so much so that it makes a rare longer-range prediction: 2020 is expected to be “the peak millennial home buying year.” Nationally, home prices will continue to rise—but slow to a U.S. average of 2.2%.

Fannie Mae believes that mortgage interest rates will continue to rise (and who should know better?). But among home loan forecasters, Fannie was the most optimistic, believing that rates will top out at a livable 5% by year’s end.

That looks to be in synch with TradingEconomics.com, which cited “the Federal Reserve’s lowered forecast for interest hikes in 2019.”

For investment-minded Monrovia real estate watchers, one of the most interesting predictions came from Housingwire. If all goes as foreseen, higher prices and interest rates will “drive an increase in rental rates.” That resurgence in rents should fuel interest by investors—tomorrow’s landlords-to-be.

The award for safest forecast goes to RISMedia, whose headlined projection for housing (“Not Better for Buyers, but Not Worse”) certainly has the least likelihood of being far off base. It summed up its vision for the coming year in one word: “balanced.”

Actually, all the major predictions are as lacking in drama as were last year’s—but when it comes to Monrovia real estate activity in the coming months, that’s hardly a bad thing. Here’s hoping your own year is stable, prosperous—and equally lacking in unnecessary drama. I’ll be standing by to help with any and all your 2019 real estate needs!

Could Monrovia Homes Have Their Own New Year’s Resolutions?


 If you are over the age of 12, you’ve probably developed a healthy skepticism about New Year’s resolutions. Or at least the life expectancy any one of them can anticipate. But whether or not the good intentions they signify live past Groundhog’s Day, they do, at the very least, serve one noble purpose: that of clarifying goals.

So I was interested when the National Association of Realtors® HouseLogic website ran an end-of-year article proclaiming a “Top-10 List of New Year’s Resolutions for Your Home.” I expected the list to consist of the kind of maintenance chores that Monrovia homes need to stay in tip-top condition—but the list was more interesting than that. The writer (home improvement author John Riha) approached the subject literally, translating the typical Monrovia homeowner’s personal New Year’s resolution list into what you might call their “home’s-eye” counterpart.

The first resolution—a perennial list-topper for most post-holiday partying adults—looks like this:

  1. Lose weight” translates into a resolution for your home of “cut energy use.” Since Monrovia homes do tend to be gluttons for energy, cutting back is a worthy 2019 goal.
  2. Quit smoking” becomes “maintain your HVAC system”—since purifying indoor air quality serves a similar noble cause. Interesting detail: for fireplaces, use firewood instead of the pressed wood substitutes which may contain formaldehyde.
  3. Get out of debt” becomes “budget for improvements.” Those year-end bonuses, if put aside for maintenance emergencies, serves to keep credit card balances from running up interest charges.

Not all the list’s entries made for perfect human-to-house parallels—but that’s all right—keeping any three or four New Year’s resolutions for an entire year would be a heroic accomplishment for any Monrovia home. But one of them (#7) would be simple to stick with: “Drink less” which translates into, “curb home water use,” could be accomplished once and for all simply by installing low-flow showerheads.

Here’s wishing that Monrovia’s New Year brings with it continued health, prosperity, and an abundance of all that is good to you and your family. I’ll be available throughout the year whenever a real estate solution is called for!

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