Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices California Properties - Isai Diego

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Concrete Hearts | The Lofts of Long Beach

7/25/2020

835 Locust Avenue #113

835 Locust

Fantastic Downtown Long Beach Loft Located in the Historic Masonic Temple Lofts building. One Bedroom One Bathroom Loft Features Polished Concrete Floors, Concrete Ceilings, Exposed Concrete Pillars and Duct-work. Open Concept Kitchen with Stainless Steel Appliances and a Breakfast Bar. Exposed Brick Wall in the Spacious Living Room, Large Dining Area, Central Heating and Air-conditioning. Inside Laundry, Secured Parking and Private Storage Area. Community Amenities include a Fitness Center, Clubhouse, Patios with Fire Pits and BBQ's, Spa and Secured Guest Parking. Great Location just one Block from Pine St. Restaurants and Shopping! A Must See!!

115 4th Street #212

115 4th


Everyone is looking for something different these days. A change in lifestyle and want more out of life... simpler, convenience and more happiness.  Welcome to the heart of Long Beach and the Historic Walker Building. This is a neighborhood that has it all. You want style, character, history, walkability, convenience, a lifestyle design aesthetics.... Welcome HOME. This loft was designed by the LA-based architectural firm Meyer & Holler in 1929 has hardwood floors, 13' high ceilings, windows bringing in all of that natural lighting and embrace the open concept and industrial aesthetics that allow for you to create your swanky space. Located by everything that you will enjoy from the dining, shopping, watering holes, close to major freeways, the beach, everything entertainment .....oh, and super walk able! What else could you be wanting? This place, has it all!

100 W 5th Street #4J

100 W 5th


Stunning industrial, open concept loft built in 1925 and located in the historic Kress building. The loft features exposed brick and concrete walls, high ceilings, large industrial-style windows with tons of natural light and uniquely etched polished concrete floors. It has a fully open concept floor plan with community rooftop sundeck access. A recently renovated kitchen features copper-style finishes, beautiful quartz counter-tops, lots of modern cabinetry and a large peninsula with ample seating. Centrally located pet-friendly building in downtown Long Beach, near beach, shops, and nightlife. Loft has assigned parking and is conveniently located within walking distance from the metro station. Ready to move in!

207 E Broadway #701

207 E B 701


Rare opportunity to live in this Historical Insurance Exchange Building. Beautiful loft style living on a top floor with amazing views. Original brick and mortar walls, exposed ducts, high ceilings, concrete beams, wood floors and lots of large windows for amazing views. Gourmet kitchen with stainless steel Viking appliances, granite counter tops and recessed lighting. Inside laundry, AC & heating. This loft features a bonus upper area, walk-in closet, large bathroom which has a dual vanity with separate shower and deep tub with jetted jacuzzi. Large separate storage room and 2 secured parking spaces are included. Building is Historical and part of the Mills Act. Situated in the heart of Downtown Long Beach Dining & Entertainment District. Just walking distance to the Marina, Ocean, The Pike, restaurants, Performing Arts Center, Convention Center, Arts District, Shoreline Village, Pier, Aquarium of the Pacific, grocery stores and public transportation. Please see Virtual Video.

207 E Broadway #801

207 E B 801


First time on the market, custom designed rooftop penthouse top of the historical Insurance Exchange building in the heart of Downtown Long Beach. Large windows in every room & large wraparound balcony allows for amazing panoramic city & ocean views to the Hollywood Hills & Pacific Ocean. Direct elevator access allows you to feel & see the architectural open floor plans through glass panels separating its levels. The first level has 16' high ceilings, custom kitchen & cabinets featuring pull out shelves & storage. Viking appliances, 6-burner stove w/a griddle & double oven, built in side by side refrigerator, trash compactor, dishwasher, microwave & wine refrigerator. 1st level has a family room, bathroom & 2nd SMALL bedroom or can be used as an office with walk-in closet. Main 2nd level has built-in TV w/surround sound, gas fireplace, formal living area & room for 16-person dining table. Glass double doors open to the wraparound west balcony side. Leading to the upper 3rd level the stairs consist of open walnut treads & glass panel railings. 3rd level provides open master suite w/window walls on the south & west sides. Floating walls separate master bedroom from its master bath. Down the hall is the laundry room & 2 large walk-in closets that lead to the 3rd level deck. HVAC systems & water heaters for lower & upper levels. Renovated in 2005, earthquake retrofitted, fire sprinklers and monitored fire alarms. Historical Building, acquired Mills Act in 2015.

How the Coronavirus Will Affect Real Estate And What You Can Do About It

4/14/2020

Coronavirus and Real Estate
With the coronavirus hanging above us, a global, economic shut down, and unemployment skyrocketing, it makes a lot of people wondering whether or not real estate is such a hot commodity still. While no one has a crystal ball showing what the future might hold, the reality is that the real estate market is still moving, almost unabated because of the virus.

Does that mean you should go out and head into every open house you can possibly find? Not quite, but one thing is for certain: real estate will be forever changed.

My name is Isai Diego, and I’ll be telling you how COVID-19 is affecting the real estate market, and what you can do about it.

  1. Interest Rates
    1. The interest rate was already low, for a long time, and despite the cut at the Federal Reserve, the interest rate had the opposite effect. It wasn’t because of bad policy making, but because the banks needed time to know what to do with such policies, creating a cloud of doubt. Interest rates, however, are expected to come down lower than before, and lower than anyone could have ever dreamed of getting when financing their home.
    2. Does this mean you should go on a shopping spree? Probably not. The surge of interest rates has finally come over the peak it seems, and the interest rate is coming down, definitely the lowest rates we have had our lenders lock in a really long time, maybe even ever.
  2. Inventory and Pricing
    1. If you’re were hoping to buy before, and you’re still working, albeit at home, then now is the time to buy. Property prices have seemed to stop increasing, and better yet, the interest rate is finally starting to see the benefit of the Feds moving the interest rate down to its bare minimum.
    2. What does this mean? This means that you’re going to see rock bottom interest rates and great buying opportunities for prices. Now, more than ever, is the best time to be buying real estate. But what about selling?
    3. If you are currently selling, or are hoping to sell, again, no one has a crystal ball, as far as what’s going to happen to prices. For now, like I just stated, prices have stabilized, meaning they’re not going up, but they’re not going down either. Any equity you’ve made since 2012 is probably not going to go anywhere, depending on your location or financing terms.
    4. Should you wait or take action now? That’s all up to you. If you absolutely need to sell, then sell away! Properties are still moving, escrows are still closing, and buyers are still looking. What makes selling great today is that it has never been easier. With Virtual Reality, virtual tours, and carefully done photography and marketing, the only person that might ever step inside the home is the serious buyer. No more having to host Lookie-Lou’s.
  3. Viewings and Showings
    1. Speaking of Lookie Lou’s, it has never been easier to view a home. MatterPort, VR, personal video tours, and great photography is the signature of a great listing agent, and that means that if you’re serious about a property, you’ll be able to see every little nook and cranny long before you ever step foot inside, making it easy to see whether or not actually visiting the property is worth leaving home.
    2. This is great news for those of us that have long been wanting this to be more wide spread. Virtual tours and the like will most likely be a standard practice among listing agents, making it better for you, the buyer, to see whether or not a home is worth the visit.
    3. If you haven’t been prequalified yet, that’s one of the first steps you should take before you start looking, in order to ensure that you have
  4. Rentals and Forbearance
    1. If you’re currently making any rental income, the pandemic will definitely create some long-term issues if your bank isn’t allowing forbearance. If this is currently your situation, your best first step is to call your bank and ask. If you were thinking of getting into rental properties, I would take action sooner than later.
    2. Rock bottom interest rates, the best selection of renter applications with (obviously) stable income, and stable pricing has made today the best time to get into real estate investing. If you’re able to get in with no mortgage insurance, then you’re in luck. No new investor will have a better starting ROI than those who take action today with no PMI.

We’re still not sure where this global pandemic will take us, and we won’t know what the effects are going to be in the long run, but it’s being guessed by top experts around the world that the Real Estate market, after this Safer-At-Home order, will be stronger than ever. If you’ve been on the fence for a long time, and you’re able to do so, despite the state order, buying today will be among the best decisions in your life.

Please Excuse My Dear Arms, Sadly

2/4/2020
Please No More Weights

My arms are killing me, and I have no one else to blame but myself for this one. Last night, we decided that we could just hit the gym, and hit it as hard as we want. Well, that wasn't really the plan. My friend has had a membership to Crunch for a long time and, as I did once before, never used it. Fortunately, we have each others back on this one to push each other, but it's not to say that it wasn't difficult to just jump head first into an advanced Zumba class. Mind you, I used to do Zumba one (sometimes twice) a week, close to Anaheim and Magnolia on Tuesdays and then again on Thursday on 7th and Cherry. I was quickly becoming a Zumba MASTER. (I was actually terrible at it, but I did have a lot of fun with it)

Anyhow, we actually decided we wanted to do Yoga and then Zumba last night, but it had turned out that we misread something and it turned out that we missed the Yoga class; something I was really looking forward to that night due to a rather eventful day. I was already feeling each muscle pull and stretch, until the music started blaring in my ear, reminding me that I wasn't on a mountaintop in Tibet, but rather a club of terror and dancing. If there's one thing that I'm proud of, it's the fact that I wasn't dying at the end of the session. I was happy it was over, sure, but it made me realize that I have much more stamina than I give myself credit for.

Stop All The Weight Training Please

This morning, however, one thing I did regret from my work out was how terribly out of shape my arms are. I remember that in marching band, my arms were fit, and well rounded, mostly due to holding a trumpet up for hours without end. I'm not saying I was Popeye or anything, but I did hold a brass instrument without being too sore after hours of doing so. If you think you can hold a 10 pound instrument for an hour straight, pick up your dog, and hold them up for ten minutes straight and let me know how that goes. Even I struggle with that these days which is why I decided to start weight training. Not only is it the fastest way to lose weight, it's also good to be able to push your body to limits you hadn't before.

But then it happened. What I feared the most. I was sore when I woke up. I could barely iron my shirt this morning and luckily, my shake was made for me. I almost didn't want to take Kiwi out for a walk, but then I was reminded that if I didn't, she'd just poop inside, so out I went. I was quick to notice that the wind has mostly died down, but wow was it cold. When I got back, I was quick to make myself some coffee to warm me up, and I was getting ready to get some food cooking, I was reminded by my phone that I had a meeting at the office an hour from then, so I just grabbed my smoothie and out I went. 

If there's anything to take away from all this it's work out more and don't make excuses afterwards. I've always heard, jokingly, that it's not easy being beautiful, and after yesterdays ordeal, I believe this 100%. Working out isn't really my idea of fun; playing Pokemon and seeing friends is, but there's always a way to make things fun, even if it's something as dreadful as going to the gym. Zumba was, despite being out of step 25% of the time, fun, and even though my arms are killing me, I can't wait for my next workout in order to get those gains I've always wanted. I think we can't always focus on just the present and be hedonistic in our ways. We need to be conscious of the future as well, as our health dictates our mood and not taking care of it, will make us live a life of regret. I think I'd rather just make a few sacrifices throughout the day, and then live the rest of my life more comfortably rather than think, "I should have done more (or less) of..." 

Anyhow, I hope you have a wonderful Tuesday, and have a productive day!

In case you haven't, check out my new podcast on Anchor and follow me on Spotify, Apple, Google, or whatever your favorite platform may be! 

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Happy Monday, Happy Life!

2/3/2020

Super Bowl, Shakira, food, ribs, and Kiwi acting a fool. This weekend was filled with excitement, confusion, and a terribly boring Super Bowl. What does the rest of the week hold for the residents of Long Beach?

A Fun Fact

I don't watch football too much. There was a time, long ago, where I had to watch every game, every team, and every highlight. Even then, I was completely out of the loop. No matter how many people I talked to, listened, or read about, I couldn't tell you which team Lebron James played for in the NFL. What I could tell you, however, is that football is a wonderful game. Where else can you see massive titans come together and twirl, jump, dodge, and come to a complete stop with seemingly no effort? To be be honest with you, I haven't seen a single game this season at all, despite being a devout Chargers fan. (I was so happy when they came to LA) The truth is, I lost interest in the game. Not only did I not know who was who, I didn't know where they came from, where they went, and how that affected the meta aspect of the NFL, which is where a lot of the excitement comes from the more devout fans. Needless to say, I did enjoy my large bout of ribs, beer, wings, and some sausage croissants that are so simple to make, it blows my mind I don't bake them more often. I wonder if Long Beach has a year-round Super Bowl finger food restaurant around?

Regardless of all the food I ate, I did enjoy a few good passes from Kansas City, as well as a few Hail Mary's from San Francisco. Even though I was a bit upset that the 49'ers didn't take the game, it was all wrapped up in an awesome bowl called the Half Time show. Growing up, I wasn't much a fan of either Jennifer Lopez or Shakira, but as I grew more mature, I started to love their music and their dancing. Seeing them on stage together, dancing and singing was an amazing trip down memory lane, reminding me much of my (awkward) middle-school years. Then I had to remind myself that as beautiful and energetic these women are, they are significantly older than I am, yet in better shape than I have been since high school; a memory trip I didn't really want to remind myself as I dipped yet another wing into ranch. 

Visit Anhedonia

Locked in CagesLocked in Cages

One dystopia I hope I'm never placed in is the interesting, tragic city of Anhedonia. Saturday evening for me was highlighted with an amazing production held in downtown Los Angeles, Cages. To be honest, the only thing I knew was that it was a love story, and that it was set in a world where no one feels emotions. Being an aspiring writer, this seriously intrigued me and once there, I became completely entrapped in this world. You're greeted and immersed into this world, long before the story begins, with it's amazing settings, props, drinks, and actors. As the story moves along, you're quick to see how the foyer's props play perfectly into the tragic story of Woolf, and his beautiful love interest. It's unlike anything I have ever seen, and if possible, I definitely want to go and experience it once more, if only to catch the smaller details I didn't notice before. I have yet to see such an intense, and immersive show as much as Cages, which if you can, definitely pick up a ticket at www.cagesdtla.com and check out what it's all about. 

PRIME Time For Food!

PRIME by Shenandoah

Luckily, the weekend wasn't just a football game and shows. I decided I needed some fresh air and a mimosa during the weekend which landed me on 4th Street, a bit east of Redondo. Unfortunately, it was early in the morning, so I couldn't go to Que Sera for a beer, but I did have the fortunate luck to find parking right across the street from the amazing P.R.I.M.E. by Shenandoah. Naturally, I got myself a peach mimosa while my friend acquired themselves a regular one. Wanting to share, we got an appetizer and two different entrees, only to be reminded to never order a salad again. As much as I did enjoy the arugula packed Gem Salad with tomatoes and other greens, I would have rather doubled up on their Granny's Fried Chicken which was some of the juiciest, tastiest fried chicken I have had in all of Long Beach. Perfectly crispy, and perfectly spiced, as much as I love to cook, I don't think I can ever replicate their chicken and Corn Fritters. Unfortunately, I wasn't aware that the location was dog friendly, or else I would have brought the brat my baby girl, Kiwi. At first, I didn't know how to feel about the disposable cups, utensils, and paper, but I realized that it was this small feature that makes PRIME so unique compare to the many awesome restaurants in Long Beach. I'll definitely be visiting this place again with Kiwi to see how she likes it, but one thing I did notice is that there wasn't a dog menu for her to look at. Maybe I'll double up on the fried chicken next time and justify it by saying that I'm sharing with a 15 lbs. dog.

The Long Beach Podcast's Choice

As much as I enjoyed the weekend, I think the highlight would have to be the accidental appearance at one of my favorite pizza bars in Long Beach: The 4th Horseman. A patron since it was Public Beer and Wine, even the simplest pizza they serve, The Slasher, is an incredible experience, and with their ever rotating beer menu, I'm never disappointed with their service, selection, and amazingly horrible horror movie selection. Of course, they do put on some great films, such at Friday the 13th, but their mix of classic and modern horror films never fails to entertain. I still haven't decided which is my favorite pizza that they have on their menu, but I think that The Angel of Death would be up there on the list, always asking for it when they sell it by the slice. While not dog friendly, I would love to see this location eventually get a patio option, much like Hamburger Mary's or Lola's on Retro Row. I can only wait, and hope. 

January in Review

1/30/2020

A Month of Trends

WWIII and the memes that took center stage of this year are already strange ones. With Iran acting up (not that it's unjustified), and the coronavirus picking up steam, we should be looking forward into what the future might hold instead of seeing what might hold us back. Sure, we might get infected and the world will end right? I mean, it happened each time with SARS, bird flu, swine Flu, ebola, measels, etc. etc. and each time, the world came out, not just okay, but forgetting about it by the next big meme. In reality, these outbreaks don't scare me much, if at all. The way I've always seen it is: if I get infected, then I get to lay in bed for days on end and read and play video games. If I'm not, then I'm not. I think we, as a species, like to freak out with pandemics such as these because we're afraid of the unknown, especially with something like the coronavirus. We don't know much about it, and we get up in arms about it, but we shouldn't really worry.

Of course, it's not all doom and gloom. There are many strange things that are happening too! If you're looking to buy your very first and own home, then now is the time. A lot of people wanted to wait until the prices dropped and I'm not sure why they would do that, but you might EVER get another shot at getting an interest rate that's sub 4% ever again. That's right, LESS THAN 4%. During the last weekend, I had two lenders call me for two different loans we're in the middle of escrow calling me. They locked in the rates because, what would you know, they're at 3.5% and 3.65%. These two are the first two in years that I lock in at such a low interest rate. As I mentioned in my video, "The Cost of Waiting," this is something you always want to take advantage of. 

A lower interest rate doesn't so much mean that your payment will be less, but the fact that your payment will be more principle heavy. If you're clever with these interest rates, you'll be able to pay off your home sooner than you think, and if you're extra clever, you might even be able to get someone else to pay your loan for you. That's right! Get someone ELSE to pay for your home. No more paying rent to someone else. Wouldn't it be better to just be a landlord yourself instead? That's why I'd like to announce the House Hacking Workshop of 2020. April 25th, I'll be teaching you the tips and tricks to get started on becoming a landlord and learning how to invest in real estate for yourself as I do. Of course, there are a lot of things to take into consideration here, especially in the Long Beach real estate market. I'll have more details about that workshop soon!

A Month Of Control

Speaking of house hacking, here in the City of Long Beach, there was a law that had passed not too long ago about rent control. Landlords couldn't raise the rent more than 10% in a year over year basis, plus inflation. What does this mean? that means that if your rent was $1000 a month, then your landlord couldn't raise it more than $100 the next year. In theory, a rent increase of more than even five percent is unsustainable, so it was easy for most landlords to forgive a 10% cap, but for others, it's not so easy. Rents in certain areas grow faster than others because of the high demand. Whether it's school locations, shops, services, and so on, rent does on occasion increase much faster than nearby areas because of such things. The prime example for you would be Belmont Shore, Marina Pacifica, or Ocean and Pine. Rent there has more than doubled in the past couple years, but if you look into other areas, rent has stayed pretty much the same. 

That's when the State stepped in, limiting rent control to 5% plus CPI (consumer price index). In Long beach, the total is 8.33%. If your rent was $1000, then your landlord can't increase your rent by more than $83.30. In reality, it's not that much, but for landlords, it's extremely limiting, destroying any hopes into increasing market demands. One of two things will happen: landlords will sell to faceless outside investors, or buildings are going to stay becoming dilapidated. sue, but it's not as easy as one might think. Regardless, Long Beach is a more than capable city, and despite these new restrictions, I suspect that Long Beach will still be a prosperous city, despite what Sacramento wants us to do.

And A Month Of Great Loss

It was a cold morning, and quite honestly, I didn't really want to get up for the day. I was warm and comfortable, but I did have a pretty big obligation that day: the Home Buyers Seminar. I wasn't really in the mood to teach, but I got up knowing that dozens of families were going to have a serious amount of questions of a sometimes complex topic. As I got up and started navigating my phone for a bit, I chose to listen to music for once, instead of a podcast or the news. On my way out, I quickly glanced a comment somewhere that read, "More alive than Kobe Bryant." Dismissing this troll, I ignored it and headed out to the office. Once there, my parents were already setting up the seminar but that's when my dad dropped the news on me: Kobe Bryant is dead. 

To be honest, I felt my heart sink, and I really felt like I wanted to cry. When I was a kid, I didn't really have many friends, and I had just moved to a new city, only to have less than no friends. I always loved watching Kobe Bryant and the dream team play, however, making me wonder if I would one day become a basketball star like him. (Spoiler alert: I did not) Regardless, his love for the game, his skill, his focus; these are the things I admired about him. It were the things that I lacked, but he had so much of it, that despite being either fifty feet away, or a two THOUSAND miles away, he projected that energy through my TV screen and into me, making me feel as if I was the one making each shot for the city of Los Angeles. Each jump was my jump. Each shot was my shot. Each yell was my yell. I moved, and ducked, and tossed along with him. All of those emotions were long forgotten, however, as I grew older and became more concerned with that pretty girl from fifth period. When my pops let those words out of his mouth, all of those emotions, feelings, shocks, and jumps came back in one big rush, and the realization that I had forgotten all that, and that I can never feel like that ever again created a great sadness inside of me.

Of course, this was, to me at least, the biggest shock of January. I didn't care about the coronavirus, or the threat of WWIII. I only care about Kobe, his family, and the families of the other victims in that horrendous crash. The world might never know exactly what happened in that helicopter crash, and much like the death of another one of my favorite celebrities, I would much rather not know exactly what happened. I would much rather believe that he died, comforting Gigi the whole way down with her in his arms saying that everything will be alright, only to open their eyes into a great hall where they can play ball together in peace for the rest of time.

In Summary

I didn't really want to end this on such a sad note, but regardless, life moves on, and our pain of loss today will become memories of joy we can remember later. I guess one thing that tragedies like this always remind me of is to cherish each and every day, no matter how awful, because tomorrow, even the next hour, isn't promised.

Catch me on the next post and podcast! We'll talk about what to expect in February, how to move forward with your investments, and tips and tricks for the upcoming weather we see in beautiful Long Beach, California! 

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