Bloomberg Businessweek reports on a Bay Area Family’s Struggle to sell their home in Oakland

When met with resistance from Wells Fargo Bank on a recent short sale transaction in Oakland California I contacted Karen Weise from Bloomberg Businessweek. Karen wrote a fantastic article about one family’s struggle with Wells Fargo Bank to sell their mother’s Oakland Home. Check out the article in the following link:

http://www.businessweek.com/articles/2012-05-07/a-familys-struggle-to-keep-and-later-try-to-sell-their-home

Potential Good News for Bay Area Real Estate Sellers

Motivated by low interest rates and falling prices the number of buyers for Bay Area Homes is rising. Though this has not yet translated into rising home prices for Alameda County we are seeing multiple offer situations in many desirable Bay Area neighborhoods. When buyers compete for homes sellers find themselves in a strong position to negotiate real estate transactions. If the number of homes on the market stays constant I am expecting rising home values in the Bay Area throughout the Spring and Summer of 2012.

Article below includes information and statistics on Bay Area Real Estate Markets through Q1 of 2012:

http://blog.sfgate.com/ontheblock/2012/05/04/bay-area-home-sales-off-to-best-start-since-2005/

Help for distressed homeowners

Distressed California homeowners secure assistance in landmark settlement

What’s going on -

In the largest consumer financial protection settlement in US history the state of California has secured up to $18 billion that will be put to use aiding distressed homeowners. Homeowners whose loans are serviced by the following banks may be eligible for assistance:

  • Ally/GMAC
  • Bank of America
  • Citi
  • JPMorgan Chase
  • Wells Fargo

 

Who does this affect?

The settlement will provide assistance to the following groups:

  • Homeowners who need loan modifications
  • Borrowers who are current on mortgage payments but paid more than their homes current value.
  • Borrowers who lost their homes to foreclosure

 

What can you do -

You can gather more information and learn whether you qualify for assistance by contacting your mortgage servicer:

  • Ally/GMAC: 800-766-4622
  • Bank of America: 877-488-7814 (Available M-F  7am – 9pm CT and Saturdays  8am CT – 5pm CT
  • Citi: 866-272-4749
  • JPMorgan Chase: 866-372-6901
  • Wells Fargo: 800-288-3212 (Available M-F 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. CST)

For more information visit: http://www.nationalmortgagesettlement.com/

Find more articles from Devin Ratoosh aboutBay Area Real Estate

My top five places to eat in Albany, North Berkeley, and Kensington

I’m not going for a gourmet fine dining experience with this list. These are my favorite places to drop in and grab a casual meal by yourself or with friends without breaking the bank.

Inn Kensington

http://www.yelp.com/biz/inn-kensington-kensington

Located in the middle of the Arlington circle I come to Inn Kensington often for breakfast. The food is great, and reasonably priced. Inn Kensington features lots of specials if you’re looking for a change from standard breakfast fare.  Best of all they do not keep you waiting, after placing your order, the food is prepared and in front of you within five minutes (I timed it). Only drawback is they don’t take credit cards so make sure to bring cash.

Favorite Meal: Mexican omelet with a side of biscuits.

 

Bel Forno

http://www.yelp.com/biz/bel-forno-berkeley

There was a stretch of time where I would eat lunch here everyday. Though the sandwiches are a bit expensive, the quality is worth the price. What’s more you get a side of chips and a cookie with your meal.

Favorite Meal: Chicken Pesto Sandwich

 Kim’s Café  

http://albany.patch.com/listings/albany-cafe-2

Just found out about Kim’s recently from my colleague at Marvin Gardens, Richard Morrison.

Kim’s serves Vietnamese cuisine, and makes one of the few Vietnamese sandwiches that I can bring back to my office without stinking up the place.  They sometimes go wild with the carrots but I keep coming back.

Favorite Meal: BBQ Chicken Sandwich

 

 Taqueria Talavera

http://www.yelp.com/biz/taqueria-talavera-berkeley-2

I’m going to go ahead and say something that a lot of people aren’t going to want to here. Talavera is hands-down better than Gordo Taqueria.  Talavera offers a larger selection, bigger burritos, and better food. I grew up with Gordo but after a few too many bones in my grilled chicken I had to change things up, and I’m glad I did.

Favorite Meal:  Breakfast Burrito with Chicken

 

Little Star Pizza

http://littlestarpizza.com/splash3.html

Though I have a lot of love for Zachary’s Pizza on the top of Solano, recently I have been heading Westbound to the renovated storefront that houses Little Star Pizza. Though it’s a bit pricey, the delicious cornmeal crust earns them my vote for best tasting pizza in Albany.

Favorite Meal: White Pie