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The Real Estate Advisor: February 2020 | carlosfcamargo.net

The Real Estate Advisor: February 2020 | carlosfcamargo.net

+ The Difference Between Home Warranty & Home Insurance
+ Prep Your Pets for the Big Move
+ Take 5: How to Get Ready for Retirement
+ Down Payment Myths Debunked


Ready to find “the one”? I can help you find the home of your dreams. Message me to get started.


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Posted on February 13, 2020 at 5:24 PM
Carlos Camargo | Category: Glossary of Housing & RE Terms, Newsletter-CFC, Real Estate Market Update

Guide to Buying a Home | Things to Consider – Winter 2020

4 Reasons to Buy a Home This Winter 

Here are four great reasons to consider buying a home now instead of waiting.

  1. Prices Will Continue to Rise
  2. Mortgage Interest Rates Are Forecasted to Remain Low
  3. Either Way, You Are Paying a Mortgage
  4. Waiting May Increase Your Long-Term Costs

Buying a home sooner rather than later could lead to substantial savings. Let’s get together to determine if homeownership is the right choice for you and your family this winter.

Guide to Buying a Home | Things to Consider – Winter 2020 Edition

Posted on December 20, 2019 at 10:35 PM
Carlos Camargo | Category: Buying a House, Credit & Home Finance, First-time Buyer, Glossary of Housing & RE Terms


Almost everyone enjoys living in spaces that look and smell clean. Many homeowners do a great job of staying on top of routine cleaning chores.

However, a generally clean house often has dirt lurking here and there. It may not be visually noticeable, but hidden dirt impacts the quality of the air you breath and is a big difference-maker in giving your home that fresh smell.

It is impossible for your home to always be 100% germ, bacteria, and dirt free. However, knowing where dirt resides is the first step in making your home a cleaner and friendlier place. Some places that need to be cleaned are very hard to reach and, as a result, you might want to call a professional to help you out. 

On the other hand, now that you know what you should keep an eye on, some areas are very easy to clean, you just have to remember to do them. Write down a list of all places that are tricky to clean and it shouldn’t be a problem.

All in all, a clean home is crucial for your physical and mental well-being. As a result, it is important to try and keep it that way as much as possible. 


Here are five places where dirt often
hides in nearly everyone’s home


1. Windows

The glass in your windows may be sparkling, but how long has it been since you’ve cleaned your window treatments? If you can’t remember, it’s probably been too long!

Curtains, blinds, and even the upper surface of window frames can hide dust, pollen, and a plethora of other nasties that can impact the indoor air quality of your home.

Don’t forget to scrub the windowsills and remove any gunk in the window tracks. In addition to keeping your windows completely clean, this will also help them function well for many years to come.







2. Air Vents and Ductwork

The very system used to circulate heated and cooled air in your home may be lowering your home’s air quality. Air filters should be changed monthly. Vents should be vacuumed every time you sweep the floor.

Twice a year (when you change your clocks, test your smoke detectors, and check the gauge on your fire extinguishers), remove the vent panels and vacuum or wipe down the ducts as far as you can reach. After everything has dried completely, replace the cover.

Consider hiring a company to clean your ducts once a year thoroughly. You might be surprised by what their special tools can pull out of your ductwork!



3. Doors, Doorknobs, and Light Switches

We tend to become “dirt blind” to things we see and use frequently. Over time, your doors can accumulate grime on and around the doorknob, and any place you (or a family member) regularly grabs or pushes on a door.

While wiping down your doors, be sure to clean any thresholds and any tracks (like those used by folding doors). Be sure to wipe down the top edge of the door and the frame too!

Light switches are often handled dozens of times a week and aren’t cleaned nearly often enough. How long has it been since you objectively observed the cleanliness of the switch plates in your home?






4. Appliances and Large Furniture Items

If it’s been a while since you’ve pulled out the stove, the refrigerator, the couch, or the bookshelf, the chances are excellent that grimy gremlins (and giant dust bunnies) are hiding there, waiting for you.

To avoid damaging these items (and your back), get some help moving heavy pieces so you can sweep, vacuum, and chase those little monsters away!




5. Baseboards

Baseboards can get pretty dusty, especially the sections behind curtains, furniture, and other visual barriers. Even if you always dust the baseboards when you vacuum and sweep, you may be missing part of the dirt.

The edges where your flooring meets the quarter-round or baseboard can collect more dust than other nooks and crannies in your home. Use your vacuum cleaner’s crevice tool to suck out the junk that has migrated here from other areas of your floor.

Once you conquer these five prime areas for concealed dirt, you may want to go on a mission to find more hiding spots. For example, you can probably eye your computer keyboard and mouse, any accent pillows and throws, and household trash cans with suspicion too.



Posted on December 13, 2019 at 11:23 PM
Carlos Camargo | Category: Glossary of Housing & RE Terms, Home Care & Maintenance, Investment Property

DISPELLING REFINANCING MYTHS: Reasons to Refinance your Mortgage

“Refinancing” is a scary word for many people, but that shouldn’t be the case for you. For many homeowners, refinancing can not only lower your monthly payments and help with your monthly budget, but it can save you thousands of dollars in the long run.


For years now, we’ve been hearing that interest rates will be on the rise, and although there have been some small increases, you’re still in a great position to drastically lower your interest rate. The general rule is if your mortgage interest rate is more than one percent above the current market rate, you should consider refinancing.


Don’t brush off refinancing just because it seems like a long and daunting process. An informational call with a lender to see how rates compare will only take a few minutes. There are also some programs for streamlining the application process. And besides, isn’t the amount of money you could save worth the time and effort?


Seeing your Adjustable Rate Mortgage (ARM) increase after the introductory period can be incredibly stressful and place a squeeze on your budget. Many people assume they’re stuck, but ARMs can be refinanced, just like fixed-rate mortgages. You can even switch to a shorter term fixed-rate mortgage, such as 15 or 23 years. The longer you’re planning to stay in the home, the more sense it makes to look into refinancing.


Reasons to Refinance your Mortgage



Posted on November 26, 2019 at 6:25 PM
Carlos Camargo | Category: Credit & Home Finance, Credit & Home Finance, Glossary of Housing & RE Terms, Home Care & Maintenance, Investment Property



The Housing Price-to-Income Ratio is an interesting and important measurement of housing valuation and affordability.

When purchasing an asset – whether it is a company through an acquisition or a home, there are two primary decisions to be made:

Investment Decision: What is the value of this asset that is being purchased? In an acquisition, this measurement can be made by using the “price-to-earnings”, or P/E ratio. This is how much is paid for each dollar of earnings generated by the asset. The higher the P/E ratio, the more expensive the asset. The value paid may be deemed reasonable if the asset’s value in the future is expected to rise more rapidly than assets with a lower P/E ratio.

Financing Decision: How will the purchase of this asset be financed? For an acquisition, it may be new equity through issuance of stock or it may involve debt. Measurements may include years to payback based upon cash flows or earnings contribution after financing costs.

For the “investment decision” for a home purchase, the P/E ratio depicts the number of years of family or household income that will be invested to purchase a home. A high Housing Price-to-Income Ratio may depict a housing market that home prices are expected to continue to grow rapidly or it may indicate a housing market that is over-valued. For the “financing decision”, the prospective homeowner will measure the percentage of the financing costs are to the family’s income.

Similarly, from an affordability perspective, the more years of family or household income that one must invest to purchase a home indicates lesser affordability. In this case, the family or homeowner must divert more of their income to paying for the home rather than saving or investing in other assets (e.g., 401k, investment portfolio, etc.).

Below are various charts that show the Price-to-Income Ratio for metropolitan areas across the U.S. The average for the U.S. is 3.7X. That is, it median purchase price of a home consumes 3.7 times the median family income. The U.S. average is shaded in dark blue. The green shaded bars represent markets where the average Price-to-Income Ratio is below the U.S. average. The red shaded bars represent markets where the average Price-to-Income Ratio exceeds the U.S. average.

Posted on October 12, 2019 at 6:24 PM
Carlos Camargo | Category: Buying a House, Credit & Home Finance, First-time Buyer, Glossary of Housing & RE Terms

REAL ESTATE ADVISOR: SEPTEMBER 2019 –  Down payment got you down?

Down payment got you down?

Ten things to know before buying a home

• LOOKING TO BUY OR SELL A HOME IN THE EAST BAY? I can help! Visit ===> www.carlosfcamargo.net 

Posted on September 11, 2019 at 5:54 PM
Carlos Camargo | Category: Buying a House, Credit & Home Finance, First-time Buyer, Glossary of Housing & RE Terms, Real Estate Market Update

Know Thyself, or at least your Credit History… before securing a home purchase loan

First-Time Buyer Tip #1 – Get to Know Your Credit and Credit Histories Carlos Camargo, Ph.D.

Carlos Camargo, Ph.D.

It’s no secret. Your credit history is an important factor that affects
your ability to obtain a mortgage for the purchase of your home.


Lenders want to see how you borrowed and repaid money in the past. This is reflected in your FICO score. FICO scores range from 300 to 850, and lenders believe that borrowers with higher scores are more likely to repay their loan.
















Posted on December 30, 2017 at 10:38 PM
Carlos Camargo | Category: Credit & Home Finance, First-time Buyer, Glossary of Housing & RE Terms


CFC’s Home Buying & Selling Glossary

Home Buying & Selling Glossary

Get the credit you deserve by learning the lingo!

Credit Glossary

CREDIT – An agreement in which a borrower receives something of value in exchange for a promise to repay the lender at a later date. 

CREDIT HISTORY – A record of an individual’s open and fully repaid debts. A credit history helps a lender to determine whether a potential borrower has a history of repaying debts in a timely manner. 

CREDIT LIFE INSURANCE – A type of insurance often bought by mortgagors because it will pay off the mortgage debt if the mortgagor dies while the policy is in force. 

CREDITOR – A person to whom money is owed.

CREDIT REPORT – A report of an individual’s credit history prepared by a credit bureau and used by a lender in determining a loan applicant’s creditworthiness. 

CREDIT BUREAU – An organization that gathers, records, updates, and stores financial and public records information about the payment records of individuals who are being considered for credit.

CREDIT SCORE – A computer-determined number (score) that reflects an evaluation of positive and negative credit information about an individual. Many lenders use this number when determining whether to extend credit. The score is available from the credit bureaus, usually for a fee. Credit Scores are sometimes referred to as FICO scores after the Fair Isaacs Company that developed the credit scoring model.



Resource: Fifteen pages of definitions for glossary terms from A to Z available online at

CARLOS CAMARGO | Category: First-time BuyerGlossary of Housing & RE Terms



Posted on December 26, 2017 at 11:08 PM
Carlos Camargo | Category: First-time Buyer, Glossary of Housing & RE Terms