Alan Shafran Real Estate Blog


Carlsbad is a hidden gem in the Northern San Diego County. With plenty of things to enjoy in the area, it is easy to spend a few days to relax. Make sure to check out these attractions in the Carlsbad area during your next visit.

  • Legoland, California - This large 128-acre park appeals to families and their kiddos ages 3 to 12. This theme park features roller coasters, LEGO building sites, shows, play areas, a LEGO miniland, restaurants, shopping, and more.
  • Museum of Making Music – a unique museum that provides an exciting insight into the last 100 years of American music through different interactive displays.
  • Carlsbad Food Tour - a three-hour, guided walking tour. This fabulous tour offers food tasting from 7-8 unique eateries with
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When selling your home, there are many factors to consider beyond keeping it clean. Properly staging your home can help to ensure that your home sells for the highest price. Keep these tips in mind to help stage your home for selling.

  • Empty your closets – take at least half of your belongings out of all of your closets. Closets that are busting at the seams can give the seller the idea that there is not enough storage.
  • Brighten up – when showing your home, make sure every light is turned on. Bright rooms look bigger and show better. If you find that there is a dark area of your house, consider placing a lamp there for the time being, to light up the area.
  • Take your pets out – while your furry friends may enjoy the extra company, some people do
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Looking for a house can be a very stressful yet exciting time. Before you start house hunting, you should know what to look for. Make sure to keep these tips in mind to ensure that you find the house of your dreams!

  • Location – while you can change almost every aspect of your house, you cannot change the location. The location of the house is much more than just the property it sits on. Make sure to you are aware of things like traffic noise, power lines, school ‘s in the area, etc.
  • Lighting – if you walk into a dark room, it may just be that the lights are not turned on. It could also be how the room is situated. A dark room may lack proper windows or have a blocked view, which can be bothersome after you move in.
  • Storage – when looking at
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While almost any renovation that you make to your house will help to increase its value, not all renovations are the same. Make sure to consider these top 4 renovations that will give you the biggest bang for your buck when remodeling your home!

  • Kitchens – kitchens can sell homes. If you have outdated countertops, cabinets, and appliances, you might want to consider swapping them out for a newer, updated look. Even something as simple as replacing the hardware or repainting the cabinets can add a lot to your home.
  • Master Bath – a master bath can play into the luxury of your home. Upgrading the shower to a frameless glass enclosure and adding new fixtures can completely transform the room for only a couple thousand dollars.
  • Paint – a new
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The real estate world can be confusing, especially if you are buying your first house. Make sure you know the truth behind these common real estate myths to ensure happy home hunting!

  • The Federal Reserve Controls Mortgage Rates – while the Federal Reserve can influence mortgage rates, they do not have any direct control over them. Credit spread, inflationary pressures, and global savings control mortgage rates.
  • The Low Number of Houses Under Construction is a Bad Sign – in reality, the number of homes on the market is very high, so new home construction is not necessary. Builders cutting down on the amount of homes that they build can help to stabilize the market.
  • People are Retiring and Moving into Smaller Homes, which will cause an excess of
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Selling your home on your own can be very stressful and confusing. Working with a real estate agent will help to make the process much smoother. Make sure to ask any agent these questions before deciding on which agent is right for you.

What is your experience? Look for agents that have closed plenty of deals and have been selling in the local area for some time. You want to find an agent who is familiar with your neighborhood and has an understanding of the market in your area.

How will we communicate? Staying in constant communication with your agent is an important part of the process. However, you do not want a cell phone that is constantly ringing. Make a communication plan that will work for you, such as only communicating through emails

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The front yard of your home is the first thing that potential home buyers see when they look at your home, which is why it is important to make sure that it looks its best. Keep these curb appeal tips in mind to help sell your home faster.

Add bold numbers – swap out your old, outdated house number with big and bold numbers to add a focal point to your front wall and to help buyers find your house.

Paint the front door – painting your front door a color that pops against the color of your house can make your home seem more cheery and welcoming.

Paint the garage door – while you have the paint out for your front door, do not forget the garage door. Garage doors take up a lot of space and should always look their best.

Add a fence – installing a

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After you have owned your house for a number of years, you may think that you are stuck paying the same mortgage payment each month through the life of your loan. However, there are many refinance plans that banks try to keep hidden that can help you save thousands of dollars on your mortgage each month.

One of the most common refinancing programs that can help you save money is the Home Affordable Refinance Plan, or HARP. The HARP program was meant to benefit middle-class Americans by cutting their mortgage payments by more than $4,000 a year for those who qualify. It was started to help boost the economy by allowing more people to pay off their mortgage and own their homes outright. Many banks are not very forthcoming with the program since it means

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Knowing how much your home is worth will help to ensure that you list your home for the right price when you are looking to sell. While there are many different ways that you can estimate the value of your home, your real estate agent and a comparative market analysis are the best tools and will give you the best analysis.

A comparative market analysis, or CMA, is based on various data about both your home and the surrounding neighborhood. Your agent will use their knowledge about the local market and compare the recent sale prices of homes that are similar to your home to help decide on the value. When deciding on the value of your home, your agent will also take into consideration the condition of your home, the number of bathrooms and bedrooms, as

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There are many different costs that are associated with owning a home that go beyond your monthly mortgage payment, including the property tax on your home. Most property taxes are used as a source of revenue for the local government, which is one of the main reasons they seem to be always increasing.

Luckily, there are many ways that you can avoid paying or save on your property tax. By taking advantage of different exemptions and incentives, homeowners can save significantly on your taxes. Some of the most common exemptions are given to veterans to help them better afford a home. Talking with your local government is the best and easiest way to find out if there are any exemptions that you may qualify for to help you save money.

For all of your

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