Big Bear Lake, CA Real Estate News

By Tyler Wood, Big Bear Real Estate
(RE/MAX Big Bear)
There are often two sales that need to occur before you can sell your Big Bear property. The first sale does not occur with the buyer. Rather, it starts with the real estate agents who are working with the buyers in the area. If the real estate agents in your area are not sold on the property you are trying to sell, then chances are you will have a hard time getting the property sold. One of the many benefits of the MLS cooperation is the ability for all the agents to share information on the properties they are trying to sell. With over 300 agents in the Big Bear MLS, there is a strong sales force helping each other sell the properties in our area. But, with more than 1,600 properties currently on the market in Big Bear, you only have a short period of time to make a first impression o...
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By Israel Barden
(RE/MAX Big Bear Village)
This week is typically the busiest week of the year in Big Bear. Most folks get some vacation time, and what better way to spend it, than in the mountains. If you want a white Christmas, you don't have that many choices in Southern California. Big Bear looks absolutely stunning under its carpet of winter snow, and the skiing is fantastic. The only problem with this scenario is the traffic. All three routes into Big Bear are only two lanes, and with thousands of motorists coming up at the same time, traffic can get slow. With snow and ice, it gets even more difficult. Please keep this in mind when making the journey up here. Allow at least an extra hour for unforeseen events and traffic jams. It may be just me, but it seems like there are many people who are bad drivers even in perfect w...
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By Tony Card, Your Big Bear REO Specialist
(Keller Williams, Big Bear Lake, CA)
Question? It's early September and I'm leaving my Big Bear cabin for the night, but plan to be back tomorrow.  Do I have to winterize the cabin before I leave? You don't have to winterize but I strongly recommend that any time you leave your Big Bear cabin after September 1st, even for a night that you do winterize it.  So many times you get down the hill and something comes up and you aren't able to get back to Big Bear.  Now, your cabin is sitting unprotected from the cold and it may be a month or longer before you are able to return. We've had two feet of snow as early as October 1st so you should always be prepared.  This morning is a perfect example of how quickly things can change in Big Bear.  When I went to bed last night, there was no mention of snow in the forecast.  It was co...
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By Tyler Wood, Big Bear Real Estate
(RE/MAX Big Bear)
I am not sure what Zillow would say about this property but I am pretty sure they would think it tastes good. Even though it lacks the basic utilities and running water, this Big Bear gingerbread house has its own unique benefits. The roof is new and made of necco and chocolate which might be more fire resistant that wood shakes. The siding is made of gingerbread and almonds for that stone look. There are twix corbels, an oreo cookie pavered walkway, fencing made of pretzels, and a sugar pond stocked with cheese goldfish. The exterior lighting is made of candy cane light poles along with a mixture of M&M's and red hots along the eaves. I am open to some comparables if anyone can provide them. If there is a Realtor out there who specializes in selling gingerbread houses, maybe you can he...
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By Israel Barden
(RE/MAX Big Bear Village)
Want to buy an REO? Be ready to purchase it "As Is".Bank owned properties are homes that have, for whatever reason, gone into foreclosure. Many times the homes have not been kept in the best of shape, or even been abandoned for a significant amount of time. Because of this, these homes are sold in "As Is" condition. This means, the bank is not going to pay for any repairs on the property. In a typical transaction, a buyer has the option to request repairs from the seller. That is usually not an option when purchasing an REO property. This makes a home inspection, by a qualified inspector, of the utmost importance. Sometimes the amount it will take to complete repairs can negate the savings of the purchase price. Like any home purchase, knowledge is power. Be sure to properly investigate...
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Getting financing is tricky for these properties as they are considered personal and not real property. Typically what people will do is pull equity from another property to get the cash to buy and in some cases owners will carry with a substantial down payment and a strong offer. I have heard from one lender in particular who says that once the leases renew in '08, financing will be available and I'm currently talking with a couple of different brokers to get some feed back from them on this matter.....More on this as the info comes in....
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By Chris Atkins
(Coldwell Banker)
These unique cabins were built back in the 1920's when the newly created US Forest Service decided to allow families to build summer vacation homes for themselves in the San Bernardino Forest.Most of these cabins still remain to this day and are dotted along the north shore of the lake in such areas as Fawnskin, Polique Canyon, Minnelusa Canyon and also along the southwest shore of the lake and the Mill Creek area. You will need cash in order to buy one because home loans are currently not available for them. More on that later....So whats the "Lease" part all about?When you buy a Government Lease property what you are really buying is the cabin itself and not the land the cabin sits on which is U.S. National Forest Property. The land is then leased back to you (or actually permitted) ...
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By Tony Card, Your Big Bear REO Specialist
(Keller Williams, Big Bear Lake, CA)
The snow is here and driving in the winter terrain can be challenging. Caltrans, California Highway Patrol (CHP), U.S. Forest Service, San Bernardino County Sheriff, San Bernardino County Fire and the Big Bear Lake Resort Association have compiled winter driving tips for motorists who plan to travel to the mountains during the winter season. WINTER DRIVING TIPS: ·Keep three car lengths away from the vehicle in front of you. The distance needed to stop on ice is twice as long as you would need to brake. ·NEVER brake suddenly while driving on ice - use brakes lightly. ·If you are required to put chains on, look for a turnout or find a safe area to pull over to the right side of the road out of the flow of traffic. DO NOT STOP IN THE MIDDLE OF THE ROADWAY TO PUT CHAINS ON. ·Black ice remai...
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I use Zillow all the time. Given that they have 3-4 million visitors per month, putting my listings on Zillow is smart thing to do. I also mouse around from time to time to see anything new like the Q&A's, Make Me Move's, and other listings for sale. I have been saying for a while that Zillow's Zestimates can be very inaccurate when it comes to valuing properties in the Big Bear Lake area. This is certainly nothing new as there are many articles out there about this. This fact has never been more true than when using Zillow to put values on the lakefront properties in Big Bear. The valuation tool Zillow uses does not appear to have any way of knowing that properties on the water and will have a higher value than those properties in the immediate area that are not on the water. I recentl...
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By Steve Hirschler, Big Bear Real Estate
(Keller Williams Big Bear)
1. The agent is also your produce man, waiter, or mechanic:Agents who are working at multiple jobs will have to take time off to show your house to prospective buyers. Knowing the inventory of available homes and recent sales activity is not possible without previewing homes as they come on the market daily. Pull out a Big Bear Real Estate magazine and point at a home. Ask your agent to tell you where the home is located and the features. If your agent can't find the house they want to show you, that should throw up a red flag. 2. Your agent is your friend, sister, or brother:Do you feel you will be best represented by your friend or family member? Is this person so desperate that there career is dependent upon your listing? Are you willing to jeopardize your relationship with this pers...
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By Steve Hirschler, Big Bear Real Estate
(Keller Williams Big Bear)
Big Bear Real Estate 12/2007As of today we have 1139 residential listings on the market. This is less than we had a month ago in Big Bear. I believe the inventory is going down because people are taking their houses off the market for the Holidays and prime rental season. Other sellers have decided to wait out the market and hope to either rent or hold on until the prices rise again. If you are a seller in this market, I would say that this is not a bad idea if you don't need to sell. Homes that are on the market in Big Bear that are not priced at or below market value will not be likely to sell. Overpricing your Big Bear home will not help our market or the sellers. Many buyers are slow moving and want to be sure to get the very best deal. They see prices continue to drop and wonder wh...
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By Steve Hirschler, Big Bear Real Estate
(Keller Williams Big Bear)
1. People will drive like there drunk, even if they aren't.Many people will either not know where they are going, or forget. They seem to park in the hardest places to miss while your sliding down an icy hill in your SUV. Many times they will tend to stop in the middle of the two way road to ask for direction from someone walking. Cars with bags of clothing or trash will have limited view, which will highlight these driving tendencies. If you do any driving in Big Bear Lake this holiday season, don't blink. You might miss the people laying in the middle of the road putting on there chains (not necessarily on the drive wheels).2. Locals have short fuses, a sense of humor, and a good heart.Many locals will actually advise these people mentioned above. They will give them directions that w...
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By Roberta Murphy, Carlsbad Real Estate and Homes
(San Diego Previews Real Estate)
I recall a blustery night in the mountains at Big Bear Lake, when we spent a long evening in our kindly neighbor's wine cellar.  Rare for Southern California, it was located underground. The comfortable cellar had gorgeous stone walls, comfortable seating and a magnificent mahogany bar. Stacked and buried within this deep paradise were thousands of bottled wines. A few bottles were ordinary, many were extraordinary and some were reserved only for the Gods. We were privileged to taste some of each. It was a cellar and a night to remember. But that is a topic for another article. Here, let's focus on wine storage and available solutions--for ouselves and our clients.The smaller and basic wine refrigerators offered as an option by some San Diego home builders and widely available in many s...
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