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  • Mary Anne LaHaye

    Abio Properties Blog

    Tuesday, September 19, 2017   /   by Abio Properties, Blogger

    Ka-ching! Oakland Home Sellers Cash In On Record Home Values

    We know the East Bay real estate market is hot. But how hot? 

    A new study that compares national home sales prices with initial purchase prices found that Oakland sellers reap the greatest return on their investments – by a landslide.
    The typical Oakland homeowner made a profit of $235,000 on the sale of their property in 2016, after living in it for about seven years, according to a Zillow report out this month.
    That’s 78 percent more than what the owners initially paid.
    Nationally, homeowners sold for 24 percent more than what they initially paid, a gain of about $40,000.
    The data analyzed by Zillow was from 2016, but we can tell you anecdotally that nothing has changed in 2017. Home values continue to climb in the strongest sellers market, thanks to record low housing inventory.
    Oakland was one of the nation’s most competitive markets this August, when about 67 percent of homes sold above list price, according to analysis by Red ...

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      east bay real estate, oakland, market conditions

    Wednesday, September 13, 2017   /   by Abio Properties, Blogger

    Join Abio Cares at Alameda County Food Bank on Sept. 25

    Please join Abio Cares on Sept. 25 between 8:30-11:30 a.m. at the Alameda County Community Food Bank as we give back to the community we all love.
    With one in five of our neighbors lacking food basics, we support the Alameda County Community Food Bank’s (ACCBF) mission to fight hunger locally -- from Berkeley to Fremont, from Oakland to Livermore.
    In just three easy hours on Sept. 25, we will help sort and package food headed to 200 food pantries, soup kitchens, senior centers, school meal programs and other community organizations. The ACCFB creates nearly 600,000 meals worth of food every week!
    Why does Abio care? To keep up with demand, the food bank needs 75 volunteers per shift. The biggest need is for weekday help, so we want to do our part. No one should worry about where his or her next meal will come from.
    The Abio Cares team includes Abio Properties agent Sarka Sarkisian, who said this will be her second volunteer trip to the ACC ...

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      abio cares, alameda county, volunteer

    Tuesday, September 05, 2017   /   by Abio Properties, Blogger

    Welcome to Lafayette's Burton Valley

    Another article in our ongoing series about East Bay neighborhoods...

    Burton Valley is the peaceful Mayberry of Lafayette – a neighborhood full of kids on bikes, grassy parks, creek walks, a top-rated elementary school and swim clubs. And it is just minutes from charming downtown Lafayette with chic shops, delicious dining and popular town festivals.
    Tucked in the "back" of Lafayette, away from the bustle of the freeway and downtown, Burton Valley is one of Lafayette’s four main neighborhoods, which also include Reliez Valley, Happy Valley and Downtown Lafayette.
    It is a quiet and coveted neighborhood once filled with pear and walnut orchards prior to the 1920s. Now Burton Valley is known for sprawling ranch and traditional homes built between 1937 and 2016, with lawns and oaks in front and swimming pools in back. The median listing price on a house for sale has held steady at $1.3 million for the last few years.
    Ranch-style homes and friendly  ...

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      abio properties, east bay real estate, lamorinda, neighborhoods, east bay wineries

    Monday, August 14, 2017   /   by Abio Properties, Blogger

    How to Write a Winning Love Letter to Sellers

    Roses are red. Violets are blue. I love your house. So sell it to me.
    You found your dream house and you love it so so much! The problem is, you are shopping in the red-hot East Bay real estate market, where homes for sale in Oakland, Berkeley, Lamorinda, Alameda and the rest of the East Bay draw multiple offers. A recent Abio listing in Walnut Creek got 11 offers, another in Berkeley received 15, and a house in Oakland got a whopping 23! You get the picture...
    How can your offer stand out in this competitive climate? One highly effective but understated tool is the love letter to the seller.
    Making the highest offer might be the obvious way to win a bid, but sometimes the bottom line isn’t just about money. It’s about whether you made a personal connection with the seller.
    A love letter to the seller puts a human face on your bid. With a letter, you are no longer just a number on a piece of paper. You are someone who loves the home, who has a backsto ...

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      abio properties, oakland, walnut creek, buyer's tips, east bay real estate, lamorinda

    Tuesday, August 01, 2017   /   by Abio Properties, Blogger

    Moraga is Broke – So What?

    Town's Troubles Don't Affect Its Appeal to Homebuyers

    In an ironic twist, the wealthy suburb of Moraga declared a fiscal emergency -- despite being a major player in the East Bay real estate boom. So, what does that mean for homebuyers and sellers?
    Not much so far.
    The town of 17,000 residents declared the emergency in late June. The budget mess is being blamed largely on the $5 million bill for repairing the crumbling Canyon Road bridge and a giant sinkhole on Rheem Boulevard, both caused by heavy winter storms.
    Officials also are blaming California’s Prop. 13, the state law that has limited property taxes and Moraga’s revenue for decades. Moraga’s pricey properties -- a typical house costs $1.2 million -- just don’t translate into big town revenues. Bad news for the town, good for homeowners who benefit greatly from low property taxes.
    Town officials are grappling with financial solutions, but say they don’t want to ...

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      east bay real estate, lamorinda, moraga