Welcome Back To My Orange County Real Estate Website & Blog

Orange County California

As a passionate advocate of the communities of Laguna Woods Village, Casta del Sol and Palmia, I truly believe Orange County California to be one of the most amazing places anywhere to live.

I will be sharing interesting and relevant news and the latest activities, events and little-known facts about the people, places and things in our neighborhoods. This will be “news you can use.”

This will be OUR blog!  I would love to hear your comments and feedback and to learn from you about your interests.  I want to know if this has been helpful to you, and if so how and why. This will be a community of information to benefit those who live, visit, and are considering relocating here.

Please follow me on my social media and I look forward to reading your reviews on Google and Facebook.

I am here to be your guide to the many opportunities you have at your fingertips.  There are several 55+active adult communities within just a few short miles.  Each have their own personality and there is certain to be the perfect one just waiting for you!

So, are you ready for new adventures, new friends and lots of fun in beautiful south Orange County?

I am Melanie Callahan and I will be your guide.

Tip No. 24 – Know Your Hidden Costs

Home Buyers: How to Identify Hidden Costs and Avoid Paying Too Much for Your Home

There’s more to buying a home than the mortgage. Don’t forget to factor in mortgage insurance, appraisal fees, inspection fees, transfer taxes, title insurance and every other dollar you’ll have to spend in order to know what you’re really paying for your new Laguna Woods, Palmia or Casta del Sol home.

Now, armed with this  knowledge, you stand a much better chance of avoiding overpaying for your Active Adult 55 plus home.

As you can imagine, there is no learning curve that forgives mistakes made during the home-buying process. If I had to choose only one tip from the 24 outlined in these blog posts, it would be this: Know your hidden costs of the transaction and get yourself a good Realtor®—someone whose sole interest in the deal is to watch out for your interests. If you take this advice, the rest will follow. A truly sharp agent will make sure that you follow all of the other suggestions I’ve covered.

Melanie Callahan proudly serves the real estate needs of local residents, specializing in active adult 55+ communities of Laguna Woods and Laguna Woods Village, as well as Orange County retirement communities.

Tip No. 23 – Make Sure You Get a Written Disclosure of All Known Defects

Home Buyers: How to Avoid Paying Too Much for Your Laguna Woods, Palmia or Casta del Sol Home

The good news for buyers looking to buy an Active Adult 55+ Community property, either in Laguna Woods, Casta del Sol or Palmia,  is that the law requires sellers to make complete disclosure of known material defects. Make sure you get it in writing. And carefully consider how these defects might affect what you’re willing to pay for your Active Adult Community home.

This is Tip 23 of a series of 24. Watch Melanie Callahan’s blog for upcoming helpful tips on how to maximize your return on investment when you do buy (and later, sell) your Laguna Woods, Palmia, Laguna Woods Village or Casta del Sol home.

Melanie Callahan proudly serves the real estate needs of residents of the Laguna Woods and Laguna Woods Village areas.

Tip No. 22 – Stay Out of Bidding Wars

Home Buyers: How to Avoid Paying Too Much for Your Laguna Woods, Palmia or Casta del Sol Home

Sometimes, the seller’s Realtor® will try to scare a hesitant buyer with the threat of another serious potential buyer. Don’t fall into this trap—it will only cost you money. If there is another buyer, then the seller’s agent will try to get a bidding war going. In these situations, whoever wins also loses because the buyer ends up overpaying for their Laguna Woods, Laguna Woods Village, Palmia or Casta del Sol property.

If there isn’t another buyer, there’s a good chance that “the other deal” will fall through and the seller’s agent will come calling. Be sure to let the other side know that you might be interested if that happens before you walk away.

This is Tip 22 of a series of 24. Watch Melanie Callahan’s blog for upcoming helpful tips on how to maximize your return on investment when you do buy (and later, sell) your Laguna Woods, Palmia, Laguna Woods Village or Casta del Sol home.

Melanie Callahan is a respected Laguna Woods real estate agent serving the retirement and active adult 55 plus communities in Orange County.

Tip No. 21 – Don’t Be Afraid to Negotiate

Home Buyers: How to Avoid Paying Too Much for Your Laguna Woods, Palmia or Casta del Sol Home

You may be the type of person who prefers a hard-and-fast price tag on everything. “I don’t like to haggle,” you say. But negotiation is the key to getting a good deal. If your goal is to get the best home possible in one of the coveted communities of Laguna Woods, Casta del Sol, Palmia or Laguna Woods Village, and for the least amount of money, then you had better be prepared to play.

This is Tip 21 of a series of 24. Watch Melanie Callahan’s blog for upcoming helpful tips on how to maximize your return on investment when you do buy (and later, sell) your Laguna Woods, Palmia, Laguna Woods Village or Casta del Sol home.

Melanie Callahan proudly serves the real estate needs of local residents, specializing in active adult 55+ communities of Laguna Woods and Laguna Woods Village, as well as Orange County retirement communities.

Tip No. 20 – Don’t Be Pressured Into a Quick Deal if it Doesn’t Feel Right

Home Buyers: How to Avoid Paying Too Much for Your Laguna Woods, Palmia or Casta del Sol Home

While you want to move expeditiously once you’re in negotiations, don’t let the other side pressure you into a quick close. It may be a sign that there’s something you should know, but don’t. And the reason could be worth money when you are searching for a Laguna Woods, Casta del Sol, Palmia or Laguna Woods Village property.

This is Tip 20 of a series of 24. Watch Melanie Callahan’s blog for upcoming helpful tips on how to maximize your return on investment when you do buy (and later, sell) your Laguna Woods, Palmia, Laguna Woods Village or Casta del Sol home.

Melanie Callahan proudly serves the real estate needs of residents of the Laguna Woods and Laguna Woods Village areas.

Tip No. 19 – Check Your Emotions at the Door During Negotiations

Home Buyers: How to Avoid Paying Too Much for Your Laguna Woods, Palmia or Casta del Sol Home

One of the costliest mistakes you can make is letting the sellers know how much you love their Laguna Woods, Palmia or Casta del Sol home. Once you’ve let it slip, you can just about forget about negotiating the price—the other side knows how motivated you are. In fact, a seller may see it as an opportunity to squeeze a little more money out of you even when you’ve made a good offer to start.

No matter how wonderful a Laguna Woods, or Laguna Woods Village home is, no matter how much you want it, keep it to yourself. This applies to other Active Adult 55+ Community homes for sale.

This is Tip 19 of a series of 24. Watch Melanie Callahan’s blog for upcoming helpful tips on how to maximize your return on investment when you do buy (and later, sell) your Laguna Woods, Palmia, Laguna Woods Village or Casta del Sol home.

Melanie Callahan proudly serves the real estate needs of local residents, specializing in Laguna Woods, Palmia and Casta del Sol retirement and active adult 55 plus communities.

Tip No. 18 – Use Time to Your Advantage

Home Buyers: How to Avoid Paying Too Much for Your Laguna Woods, Palmia or Casta del Sol Home

Just as you have a time frame in which you wish to buy, the seller almost certainly has a deadline of his own. If you can learn the seller’s deadline, it’s another piece of information that can be used to negotiate a better deal on your Laguna Woods home or other Active Adult 55+ Community properties.

This is Tip 18 of a series of 24. Watch Melanie Callahan’s blog for upcoming helpful tips on how to maximize your return on investment when you do buy (and later, sell) your Laguna Woods, Palmia, Laguna Woods Village or Casta del Sol home.

Melanie Callahan proudly serves the real estate needs of local residents, she is a 55 plus active adult communities specialist, also serving Laguna Woods listings and homes for sale.

Tip No. 17 – Keep Your Own Situation to Yourself

Home Buyers: How to Avoid Paying Too Much for Your Laguna Woods, Palmia or Casta del Sol Home

Other signs of a motivated seller include a vacant house, or a house that’s been on the market for several months with several reductions in the asking price.

Information can be used against you as well. How much you’re willing to spend, the size of mortgage you can afford, your move-in deadline—it all can be used to extract more money out of your pocket. Be sure to tell your agent everything he or she needs to know to be effective on your behalf—how much you have for a down payment, the size of the mortgage you can afford, etc. However, keep your personal circumstances and timeline to yourself when purchasing a home in Laguna Woods Village, Casta del Sol, Palmia or Laguna Woods proper.

This is Tip 17 of a series of 24. Watch Melanie Callahan’s blog for upcoming helpful tips on how to maximize your return on investment when you do buy (and later, sell) your Laguna Woods, Palmia, Laguna Woods Village or Casta del Sol home.

Melanie Callahan proudly serves the real estate needs of local residents, including Orange County CA active adult communities 55+ and Laguna Woods retirement and active adult communities.

Tip No. 16 – Learn As Much As You Can About the Seller’s Situation

Home Buyers: How to Avoid Paying Too Much for Your Laguna Woods, Palmia or Casta del Sol Home

It’s true what they say: Knowledge is power. The reasons behind a home sale in Laguna Woods, Casta del Sol, Palmia, or Laguna Woods Village, can often be used to your competitive advantage during negotiations. For example, a seller whose company has transferred him to another city is probably more motivated to sell than someone who is still looking for a new home.

This is Tip 16 of a series of 24. Watch Melanie Callahan’s blog for upcoming helpful tips on how to maximize your return on investment when you do buy (and later, sell) your Laguna Woods, Palmia, Laguna Woods Village or Casta del Sol home.

Melanie Callahan proudly serves the real estate needs of local residents, specializing in Laguna Woods senior living and Orange County retirement homes for sale.

New Listing Alert
Receive email updates from Melanie when Orange County homes come on the market.
Alert Me! >>
What's My Home Worth?
Request a free valuation of your Orange County home from Melanie.
Free Valuation >>
Moving Soon?
Request to be contacted by Melanie to start buying or selling a home in Orange County!
Free Consultation >>