Thursday, August 16, 2012

Don’t Miss The Boat!

This time around, "don’t miss the boat!"

How many times have you heard that statement in your life? Well, I’m saying it loud, and clear,  to anyone who has been sitting on the fence about investing or purchasing in Santa Barbara. 

Montecito, Hope Ranch, or Santa Barbara, it doesn’t matter in what location your interest lies, there are opportunities in every price range and neighborhood.

World renown architects and builders, like George Washington Smith, Reginald Johnson, William Plunkett, Bertram Goodhue have left a legacy in local real estate here in Santa Barbara, having designed and built properties that only a few can afford and treasure.  If you dream of owning an estate that is truly a piece of history, some of the great architectural estates in the country are available to purchase today, right in our own backyard!

Santa Barbara is the destination of a life time……Now is the time to make that dream come true.
Make the call and together let's explore this incredible community on the Pacific Coast of California.  With my 26 years of listing and selling experience in the area, I will open doors to  some of the greatest properties in the country.  

Thursday, June 21, 2012

A Unique Perspective

Being a native of Santa Barbara allows me the ability to see our community through a totally unique perspective. Santa Barbara, Montecito and Hope Ranch were my play ground growing up. Long bike rides to Hammonds Meadow and Padaro Lane beaches were a part of every summer. Exploratory hikes through the Las Padres National Forest long before they were chronicled on a web site or hiker’s guide were part of every spring after the winter rain replenished the aquifers and creeks.

These rugged trails took me to enchanting destinations, stunning water falls and cool inviting swimming holes among the massive sandstone boulders of Mission Creek. Day trips with friends and lazy afternoons swimming in the Santa Ynez River long before the creation of the Santa Rita Hills appellation and the now world famous Pinot, Syrah and Chardonnay will always be a part of my youthful memories. Today these memories and explorations allow me to share this history and insight with my clients who want to know more than just the price of a home in the Santa Barbara’s historic Upper East or Montecito’s Golden Quadrangle  .

Santa Barbara is the American Rivera, perched between the majestic Santa Ynez Mountains and the beautiful Pacific Ocean. A destination in the world that offers what everyone wants in a community they can call home. Beautiful sandy beaches, long warm summer evenings and the best kept secret by far, the glorious “pink moments”  of winter when the magnificent Santa Ynez Mountains are bathed in the pink glow of the setting sun and the stately Channel Islands appear to be painted on the horizon.

Now more than ever is your opportunity to take advantage of this truly stunning city located on the Central Coast of California. Prices have never been this affordable and may never be again. Yes, it is true, our market is storming back to life!  It is emerging from the recession.  Now is the time to take advantage of this market, before the inevitable resumption of climbing home prices begin to advance to new levels.

I have been selling homes in Santa Barbara, Montecito, Hope Ranch, Carpinteria and the Santa Ynez Valley for over 25 years. Call me and together let's explore this amazing and beautiful piece of American Paradise.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

California Real Estate - Showing Signs of Noticeable Rebound!

As we enter the second month of 2011, the overall feeling among realtors remains very optimistic and the numbers justify this confident attitude.

Last week, Lesley Appleton Young, the economist for the California Association of Realtors, confirmed what everyone was already sensing. That the state of real estate in California is showing signs of a noticeable rebound.

The foreclosure market nationally is projected to top out in 2011, BUT in California we saw this market peak in 2010, and as this section of the market decreases Santa Barbara County should experience an increased stabilization in price ranges. Presently only about 2% of the South Coast market comes from default sales.

If you are looking at indicators that affect our local market just examine closings in December 2010. There were 113 closed sales in Southern Santa Barbara County. January 2011 produced over 86 closed transactions and over 100 sales which are currently pending.

Just one year ago California had over 12 months of inventory on the books; today that number is only 5 months of active inventory. in Southern Santa Barbara County that number is only 2 to 3 months of inventory.

What does this mean? It is a good indicator that we have seen the bottom of the market and that the next few years will bring steady appreciation in both state and local markets. Investors have already seen the light with commercial and income property sales showing positive gains and numbers. The residential market will follow!

If you are a buyer, NOW is the time to get back into the market. It is time for smart action to insure that your real estate portfolios and retirement income are secure by purchasing BEFORE the market leaves you behind. Interest rates will rise soon - another indicator that investors and banks are anticipating stabilization in the real estate market.

Take action, call me today and let's start planning your next real estate move.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Real Estate Future is 
Optimistic in 2011!

It's been ten years since the millennium and we have seen the real estate world rise to inconceivable heights and sink to unbelievable lows in the last ten years. What can we expect for the New Year?

As the economy is getting healthier, the headlines are much more optimistic, and even the critics are starting to believe that the worst is behind us and the future is getting brighter. Talk of a "double dip recession" has disappeared and I believe that this will have a calming effect on the markets and allow everyone to take a fresh breath and begin to talk about what can happen instead of what has come to pass.

No one wants to see radical highs or overwhelming lows. What everyone is looking for is consistency. Consistency in all aspects of the market will bring trust and with this trust will come renewed activity.

The banks are still holding a large number of "toxic asset" properties and we still have to see this sector of the market stabilize before any real appreciation, can be seen. How long will it take is still not clear, but the institutions and banks are getting better at dealing with these properties and the assimilation of these assets into the market. We are fortunate that this is a small percentage of our local transactions and that improvement is predicted to continue throughout most of 2011.

I am honestly optimistic about the future and look forward to seeing what 2011 will bring. Interest rates are still at historic lows and inventories in all price ranges are still abundant. It is a good time to take advantage of these favorable factors, as interest rates will rise as the markets get stronger and inventories will shrink as prudent buyers also take advantage of these opportune times.

"It is good to have an end to journey toward: but it is the journey that matters, in the end." Ursula K. LeGuin.

It would be a pleasure to use my expertise and that of my team of professionals to help make your real estate journey as smooth as possible - whatever path it may take. I look forward to talking with each of you about your real estate needs, whether it is helping to reduce your current property taxes, locate a high quality lender, understanding the current value of your family's properties, or just finding a good handy man!

Call or contact me and let's get together and discuss what your needs are.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Buying Santa Barbara Property for Fine Retirement Living

Among California places to retire, Santa Barbara ranks at the top. Consider the benefits of purchasing Santa Barbara real estate for retirement years: Santa Barbara is a gem of a seaside city with an amazing climate, good temperatures year round, friendly communities, and stunning natural beauty.

Quality living in Santa Barbara is a privilege to be enjoyed. Retirement communities and retiree-friendly neighborhoods in Santa Barbara abound. For those interested, I'd be happy to show you a current Santa Barbara retirement property available in the Shadow Hills planned community, a gorgeous area with convenient and serene surroundings. This gated community oasis located on a hilltop with breathtaking vistas over the Pacific Ocean as well as the regal Santa Ynez mountains.

If you're ready to retire in style, I can give you 10 reasons why Santa Barbara real estate is a great investment today:

  1. In this buyer's market Santa Barbara real estate is more affordable than ever!

  2. Low city crime rates, good hospitals and medical facilities

  3. Arts and culture everywhere! Festivals, symphonies, music academies, opera, ballet, theatres and broadway shows, world-class performers, and art galleries

  4. The Santa Barbara Harbor, Stearn's Wharf, and miles and miles of beaches your family will love

  5. Renowned chefs and fine restaurants, scenic cafes, and a Farmers Market available every day of the week in Santa Barbara and Montecito

  6. A family-friendly attitude and more outdoor activities than you'll find time for

  7. Private golf and tennis clubs, fine country clubs, and upscale athletic clubs

  8. A density of non-profit organizations and charitable foundations to channel your inner volunteer or philanthropist

  9. Our own Santa Barbara Airport hub that is currently expanding for easy travel anywhere

  10. Did I mention over 300 days of sunshine annually and an average temperature of 65°F?

If you're looking to retire in Santa Barbara, or you're interested in Montecito or Santa Barbara real estate as a retirement investment, contact Santa Barbara Realtor John Sener today. In 24 years of listing and selling properties in Santa Barbara and Montecito, John Sener has built a superb team of marketing specialists, contractors, service people and consultants to help you in every aspect of your real estate needs. John Sener and his remarkable team will help you plan for successful retirement with Santa Barbara real estate or real estate investments. Contact John at (805) 331-7402 or visit

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Santa Barbara Real Estate Trends: 3 Ways Buyers Have the Advantage

2010 will be known as the beginning of the recovering economy and new markets in real estate. During these uncertain times, we still wonder: have the economy and real estate market finally hit bottom?

One thing is for certain - new opportunities abound in buying Santa Barbara real estate and investment property. Santa Barbara real estate trends will inevitably dip to their lowest, but so will interest rates for home loans. This is the perfect time to get involved with the Santa Barbara real estate market.

Living through these times is challenging, but we will all have a story to tell about what it was like to live through a very difficult period and come out the other side. Your story about surviving the big recession could be as transformative as the new economy if you take the opportunity to invest in income property, find your new home, or refinance your mortgage.

Think of the bragging rights you’ll have years from now if you take advantage of the current Santa Barbara real estate market conditions:

  1. Refinance your existing mortgage. Current interest rates are below historic lows.
  2. Purchase real estate NOW! Elevated inventories and seller motivation are at all time highs.
  3. Invest in income property. In 25 years of selling property in the area we have never seen the affordability this attractive. This is by far one of the best ways to provide passive income to your retirement portfolio.

You can listen to the talking heads and watch the news religiously; they all have their slant (or their major stock holders' slant) on what the future will bring. In the end, slow and steady confidence in the financial sector and diligent planning from the business leaders will bring the country and world back to profitable times.

By purchasing property now, you become the driving force behind the upward trend in your own Santa Barbara real estate investment.

Craft your success story of investing in Santa Barbara real estate and property today by contacting Santa Barbara Realtor John Sener. In 24 years of listing and selling properties in Santa Barbara and Montecito, John Sener has built a superb team of marketing specialists, contractors, service people and consultants to help you in every aspect of your real estate needs. John Sener and his remarkable team will help you plan your pathway to Santa Barbara real estate buying, selling, or investment. Contact John at (805) 331-7402 or visit

Sunday, August 29, 2010

What's Driving Current Santa Barbara Real Estate Trends?

When the Association of Realtors held its economic forecast for 2010 in southern Santa Barbara county, Santa Barbara real estate trends post-recession were a hot topic. It’s a fact that property values have declined since pre-recession days, but Santa Barbara property sales are 25 percent better than the bottom of the market in January 2009. While our region reflects the same general real estate trends as the rest of the country, the Santa Barbara real estate market is coming out strong.

Billionaire Warren Buffett appeared on CNBC in March and had these comments about the national economy: "the worst is behind us"; "things are getting better but at a very slow rate,” and; " the jobs will come back but it won't be fast". The rest of the country is starting to feel the effects of the recovery. It’s not the same economy as before we started, but we are coming out of one of the biggest recessions in the history of the United States.

What effect does this have on local Santa Barbara real estate trends?

It’s a buyer’s market in Santa Barbara. The strong appeal of Montecito and Santa Barbara neighborhoods, from good school districts to exclusive private living in paradise, is translating to more real estate and investment property sales in Santa Barbara. We are hovering well above the rock bottom of last year - and climbing. Current MLS statistics show that we are averaging between 20 and 30 pending sales a week.

A closer look shows that a majority of the sales are in the conforming sales market. What does that mean? Conforming loan sales are purchases with loan amounts under $729,000. This translates into a majority of our transactions coming in under $900,000.

What is driving all the activity in this market? In pre-recession days, the medium house price on the South Coast was over $900,000. Today that number is $760,000. Home loan interest rates are at historic lows, and attractive government tax credits (soon to expire!) are strong incentive for first time home buyers (who make up 47% of buyers) and young families to take a foothold in the Santa Barbara real estate market.

Santa Barbara, Hope Ranch, and Montecito estates and high end home sales over $1,000,000 have also increased over the past six months. Just like the Beatles song says, they're “getting better all the time." This premier property market offers the most opportunity for buyers today - whether you’re looking for a new luxury Santa Barbara home or investment property. Inventories are high and sellers are competing for a limited number of buyers, making this by far a buyer’s best opportunity to buy Santa Barbara real estate that was priced 25-35% higher in value just two yeas ago.

This newly recovering market is your chance to buy Santa Barbara property that is both a great value and a once-in-a-generation investment opportunity.

It is vital to have a qualified team of professionals at your service to purchase and sell your home - and especially to navigate a major estate property transaction. In 24 years of listing and selling properties on the South Coast, John Sener has built a superb team of marketing specialists, contractors, service people and consultants to help you in every aspect of your real estate needs. Santa Barbara Realtor John Sener and his remarkable team will help you plan your pathway to Santa Barbara real estate or property investment. Contact John at (805) 331-7402 or visit