Time to celebrate! We get two full hours of knowledgeable (and witty) hosts Dan and Jason this week on Mortgage Matters. Appraiser Jake Rodriguez was scheduled to be our guest and answer questions about home valuation, but we had to reschedule for late April. Listen live HERE.
Have you ever seen someone’s eyes light after grabbing a warm tray at the beginning of a buffet line? Ever take a 5-year-old to a yogurt shop and watch the moment of pure bliss when he/she gets to the toppings section? Where do you think the phrase “like a kid in a candy store” comes from? Read more
As you may have noticed, four local schools are getting a makeover – of the solar panel persuasion. San Luis Obispo High School, Laguna Middle School, Morro Bay High School and Los Osos Middle School are all adding solar panels to save on energy costs.
But how did they pay for it?
For some time now, we have been hearing about cuts across the board at the School District, and we were curious how they were able to handle the installations costs.
Thanks to Brian Ghiglia of REC Solar we have an answer for you.
If you missed Brian’s guest appearance on the March 24 episode of Mortgage Matters Radio, go check it out. Brian explained a great deal about solar energy on the program, including how the District was able to undertake these projects.
To install the solar panels, the District used a “Power Purchase Agreement”, which is a fancy way of saying the schools don’t actually own the panels. A third party finances the installation project and actually owns the solar panels. This third party then sells the energy back to the school at a comparable – and often lower, rate.
This is the definition of a win-win situation. At the least, it is a cost-neutral proposal for the school, and at best, they pay less for cleaner energy.
With a variety of real estate statistics released last week, Dan and Jason dug through the data to give you a better picture of where we are in the housing market recovery. Our guest is Brian Ghiglia of REC Solar, who introduces us to the world of solar energy. Listeners call in with questions.
San Luis Obispo County added 400 people to the work force in February, but the unemployment rate increased slightly and is now at 8.4 percent. The rate went up (despite adding jobs) because the labor force grew during the same data period. As reported by the Tribune, and according to data provided by Beacon Economics, the local unemployment rate peaked at 10.4 percent in April 2010.
Nationally, unemployment data improved slightly. Initial unemployment claims fell to 359,000 in the week ending March 24, a 5,000 drop from the prior week. The four-week average also fell – 3,500 to 365,000. Check out the graph of our progress HERE. As you can see, we have enjoyed a steady downward trend since November 2009.
Lastly, we have a report about GDP growth (gross domestic product), which is a general measure of our national economic activity. Fourth quarter growth hit 3 percent, which is an improvement over Q3 (1.8 percent), but still near the bottom of projections.
In February, 215 homes sold in San Luis Obispo County, which is a 9.7 percent increase from the same month in 2011. As reported by the Tribune, this number represents a positive improvement over January’s numbers, which had fallen year-over-year. Also during February, San Luis Obispo County median home price fell 0.3 percent year-over-year to $319,000.
Fitness guru Jack Lalanne used to say, “If it tastes good, spit it out.” On the other hand, we can say that if it smells bad, it’s probably bad for you.
Consumer Confidence remained mostly unchanged in March, to continue an upward trend that began last October. The number dipped to 70.2, after February’s revised 71.6.
After a turn for the worst over the past couple weeks, rates have improved and evened out. The costs aren’t quite as dirt cheap, but they are much more favorable than we have seen in recent weeks. Following, we will give a recap as to why rates have gone up, and where they might go. Read more
New home sales fell for their third consecutive month in February. Sales fell 1.6 percent in February, falling below consensus range (315,000 to 345,000) with an annual rate of 313,000.
At the same time, median home prices surged 8.3 percent in February to $233,700. Housing supply settled at 5.8 months after lows in January and December of 5.5. This is the third lowest reading we have seen during the recovery.