Archives for October 2009

Congress Debating the Tax Credit

Congress is considering expanding and extending the $8,000 first-time homebuyer tax credit, which expires Nov. 30.

More than 1.8 million home buyers will have used the credit by the end of November, including an estimated 355,000 who wouldn’t have bought a home without it, according to the National Association of REALTORS® and other analysts.

Mark Zandi, chief economist for, is among those in favor of extending the credit. Zandi would also make it available to all homebuyers. “The most fundamental argument for the credit is that nothing works in the economy if housing is falling,” Zandi said. “[The credit] is a good insurance policy. It’s vital to stem the housing price declines.”

Opponents argue that the tax credit is too expensive and doesn’t help enough people.
Extending the credit through the end of 2010 and making it available to single filers earning up to $150,000 and joint filers earning up to $300,000 would cost an estimated $16.7 million. Some in Congress propose using unspent money from the $787 billion stimulus bill to pay for it.

Source:, Les Christie (10/14/2009)

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Selling Your Home In Costa Mesa and Orange County

Selling Your Home In Costa Mesa and Orange County


For most families, their home is their largest financial asset, and deciding to sell it is a big decision that involves a lot of preparation and work. When you’re ready to sell it’s important to have an experienced real estate professional handle the details involved in the successful sale of a home for top dollar.As an experienced professional who has helped many Costa Mesa residents sell their homes, I know how to handle every aspect of the sales process – from strategically marketing and showcasing your home to making sure everything’s signed, sealed and delivered by the closing date.Providing you with comprehensive, high-quality listing service is my top priority. So when you decide to sell your home, please contact me and let’s get started!

We give your home the maximum exposure it deserves. With 80% of all home searches beginning online, we market your home on the most popular websites on the world wide web like these-

                         Web Exchange Logos

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Costa Mesa Real Estate by Kurt Galitski and The Kurt Real Estate Group

About Kurt Galitski

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Kurt Galitski- The Kurt Real Estate Group

A passion for his community is the driving force behind Costa Mesa real estate professional Kurt Galitski, one of Costa Mesa’s most fervent residents. In addition to representing the needs of buyers, sellers, investors and asset managers within his city and throughout Orange County, he has also dedicated himself to making a difference in the lives of his fellow citizens. A determined entrepreneur and proud family man, Kurt strives to provide every client with an exceptional level of attentive and knowledgeable representation.

The ability to adapt to ever-changing market conditions has enabled Kurt to thrive even in the most challenging of times. His thorough knowledge of the industry- from residential and commercial transactions, to new construction and development, to short sales and REO properties- ensures he is always available to meet the needs of his diverse clientele. Kurt’s concierge-level service is a professional signature; he has built a team of real estate professionals, The Kurt Real Estate Group, designed to care for each client’s unique needs.

“Successful real estate professionals should operate with integrity, in-depth community and market knowledge, excellent negotiation skills, effective marketing plans, and a strong network of industry-related professionals,” observes Kurt. “In my business, another integral element is the ‘client-first’ philosophy with which I operate. I pride myself on being a good listener and an effective communicator, responding quickly and efficiently to my clients’ needs.”

Kurt’s philosophy of business extends beyond his own group of real estate professionals. With associate Larry Weichman he founded Costa Mesa’s Weichman Associates – Realtors®, a boutique firm that offers clients world-class service. The group incorporates the latest in technological tools, high-end marketing, and an in-depth understanding of the communities they serve, with a client-centric approach to each transaction.

In addition to his work in real estate, Kurt has earned a reputation as an active member of his Costa Mesa community. In addition to serving as chairman of Costa Mesa’s Parks and Recreation Commission and as liaison to the Newport School Board, he is a board member of Costa Mesa United and the Costa Mesa Youth Sports Council, and a member of the Tewinkle Sports Facilities Master Plan Committee.

With an industry known for its proverbial ups and downs, Costa Mesa real estate professional Kurt Galitski offers his clients a constant level of exceptional service: he stays abreast of changes and trends, seeks out opportunities, and makes it a priority to give his customers nothing less than the highest quality of care. He’s living the good life, and Kurt’s mission is to help others do the same. Contact Me


There are many qualities and skills that go into being an excellent Costa Mesa real estate professional –

Integrity,  in-depth community and market knowledge, marketing savvy, effective negotiation skills and a high-quality professional network, all of which are hallmarks of how I work.That said, in my experience as a Costa Mesa area real estate professional, I’ve also found that providing the very best service is essentially about putting my clients first. This means keeping myself accessible, being a good listener as well as a good communicator, and responding quickly to your needs. This “client first” philosophy has always been my approach and it requires me to continually improve my skills and ways of doing business. In addition, I’ve found that the latest technologies are enabling me to do everything I’ve always done, only much more quickly and efficiently. They’ve also helped me to extend the range of services I provide to my clients. So when you decide that you’d like to buy or sell a home in the Costa Mesa areas, please contact me.


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Has The Market Stabilized in Costa Mesa? Find out how your neighborhood is doing right now!

Has the market stabilized?

This question is being asked by home buyers and sellers in every corner of America. Everyone is asking because it’s critical to know whether the market is moving up or down, in 2009 and every time you consider selling your current home or buying another one.

In the Costa Mesa real estate market, the answer is dependent upon location. Some neighborhoods, like Mesa Verde and Costa Mesa’s Eastside, have posted gains in this economy in the lower price ranges. Home values in other neighborhoods, like College Park and Mesa North , have taken a tumble. If you want an opinion of the market conditions in your neighborhood, with regularly updated customized reports, click on the Market Snapshot Link.  When do you need the current market value of your real estate investment? Homeowners should review market trends on an annual basis, at the very least. Early January is a good time to obtain a comparative market analysis that reviews the specific sales data from your neighborhood and Market Snaphot will send it all to you by email. 

Homeowners should also obtain an updated CMA (Comparative Market Analysis) by an experience Real Estate Broker like Kurt Galitski before you:

1.       Apply to refinance your mortgage

2.       Take a home equity line of credit

3.       Plan a home renovation project

4.       Meet with your family law attorney

5.       Consider the sale of your house

Homebuyers should also review a detailed market analysis before placing an offer on a home. Ask Kurt, ‘How much has this neighborhood appreciated or depreciated in the past 12 months’. In fact, it’s a good idea to obtain a two or three year history on the market trends in the community before you make your largest financial investment decision.

If you’re thinking about selling your current home and buying another in the same community, you do not need to be concerned about buying at the “bottom” of the market or selling at “The Top” of  the market. For you, both transactions will take place in under the same market conditions. However, if your goal is to build a portfolio of investment properties, then market trends are of critical importance.

In this real estate market, there are tremendous gains to be made. Investors are carefully studying the facts pertaining to each neighborhood, and they are basing their financial decisions on sound advice, backed by market data. After listening and learning, they are buying – the smart way. And so should you.

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Costa Mesa Real Estate New- Kurt Galitski


Some congressmen are becoming more concerned about the Federal Housing Administration’s financial plight and they want to increase FHA’s downpayment requirement to 5%. Rep. Ed Royce, R-Calif., said FHA is operating at the same dangerous leverage ratios that led to the takeover of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Rep. Scott Garrett, R-N.J., said he has drafted a bill that would increase the FHA downpayment requirement to 5% from the current 3.5% level. “There are increasing reports of the likely necessity of a taxpayer bailout for the FHA and this legislation aims to implement reforms to try to prevent such a bailout from occurring,” Rep. Garrett said at a House Financial Services Committee hearing. If this bill is passed, it would come on top of additional tighter requirements already implemented by FHA, including restrictions on refinances which are to become effective in December. Potential first time buyers may be advised to act now before qualification for the most popular first time purchase program in the nation becomes more difficult. Sources: National Mortgage News and HousingWire

Now could be the perfect time to buy a home for your post-employment years. After all, home prices are down an average of 10 to 20 percent from the peak in most areas of the country and as much as 40 percent in some of the most appealing retirement areas. Here are some factors that a potential buyer of a retirement property might consider: First: Moving to an area that has been hard hit by the housing downturn, like Miami or Las Vegas, can mean great prices for buyers. In addition, trading a big home for a smaller property will reduce the cost of maintenance, insurance, and taxes. Finally, buying a property now and renting it out can be profitable in the right areas as more people today prefer renting to owning. Source: Money Magazine

More people are becoming landlords in an economy where selling a home can be challenging. The nation’s second-largest home insurer, Allstate Corp., says the number of homeowners converting their homeowners insurance to landlord policies rose 27 percent in the first quarter of 2009. Jim Bass of Jim Bass Real Estate Group in Frederick, Md., says he has begun offering property-management services for absent owners, many of whom are convinced it will be easier to sell in a couple of years. One factor to consider is whether renting will reduce or eliminate the value of the capital-gains tax exclusion. Federal tax law requires living in the home at least two of the previous five years to qualify for the full capital-gains tax exclusion when the house is sold. Of course, if there is no profit to be had, then this isn’t a problem. Source: The Wall Street Journal

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