Real Estate + Mortgage News Updates


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September 9, 2023

Good morning,

As the job market continues to show signs of easing, it is looking more likely that the Fed may not raise rates in their upcoming September meeting. The Fed’s hike pause would be welcome news for the housing market.


Mortgage applications just started rising after five weeks of retreat, and the housing market could build on its momentum if rates continue to move sideways or even decline in the next few weeks.

Information + Updates


Australia - the country that has experienced just 4 recessions in the past half century (1974-75, the second in 1982-83 a third in 1991-1992, and the most recent in 2020) - wants to reach 82% renewable energy by 2030. With 300 days of sun per year on average and lots of wind, this may be possible. GDP Annual Growth Rate in Australia has averaged 3.37% from 1960 until 2023, compared to the US's 3.12%. Currently coal accounts for about 75% of Australia's electricity generation, followed by gas (16%), hydro (5%) and wind around (2%). Australia's air quality is 123rd in the world (The US is 99th). The US has had 10 recessions since 1945.



The current housing cycle began with accelerating prices in early 2020, continued with prices dipping in 2022, and ended early this summer when prices returned to their peak. This period was extreme by three measures:


  1. From February 2020 to the peak in 2022, prices soared by 45%—a rate that was matched only during the 2003-09 cycle. 
  2. The acceleration, peak, fall, and recovery played out unusually quickly. The 1977 and 1989 cycles took 5 years. The 2003 cycle took 10 years. This one played out over 3. 
  3. All regions participated in the volatility. In 2003-09, large cities drove most of the price action. This time prices boomed in even the sleepiest of small towns. (Aziz Sunderji) 



The small coastal community of Newport Coast, Calif., and its 92657 ZIP Code, located in Newport Beach in Orange County, had the priciest median residential listing price in the U.S. in July 2023, according to data from (WSJ)



Want to see how China's economic pains influence global markets - including ours - quickly? Tesla's car prices have come down again (almost 20% on some models!) because of China market pains....and competition! (Mercedes just showed a 450-mile-range EV that can re-charge in 15 minutes for an additional 200 miles)......this equates to DEflation.



The US maple syrup industry is around $1.5 billion! Vermont, New York and Maine are the top producing states, and produce about 80% of the maple syrup in the nation. (Lauren’s roommate is from Vermont and they make maple syrup)



The top one percent of earners paid about 42% of the income tax revenue in the US, accounting for 10% of the government’s total federal tax revenue. Californian one percenters paid 16.13% of the national income tax, while New York’s paid 8.34%, Texas' paid 7.85% and Floridians paid 7.58%. (YAHOO)



Electricity rates in Connecticut, Massachusetts and Rhode Island are double those in Louisiana, Arkansas and Washington! Louisiana benefits when natural gas prices are low and Washington derives about 65% of its electricity from hydro electricity which is consistently cheap and clean (although not 100% clean as the systems can emit methane). Hawaii and Alaska have the highest rates. Electricity rates in Kansas dropped the most in August.....almost 15%!



The U.S. dollar is facing challenges from developing countries that are threatening its status as the global reserve currency. The BRICS group is at the forefront of challenging the U.S. dollar status. Nearly 2 dozen countries have already ditched the U.S. dollar fearing U.S. sanctions could hurt their economies and wanting to strengthen their own currencies and economies. In March 2023 the ASEAN block was the first to decide not to use the U.S dollar for cross-boarder transactions, followed by the BRICS alliance in August 2023.


Interesting facts about the US Open, the final Grand Slam of the year, the 142nd US Open will run until September 11th. Here are 5 interesting facts about the tournament. I LOVE Coco Gauff!


1. US domination in the singles finals

The US women athlete have won 93 titles singles; Australia has won six, and Belgium and Germany have each won five. The US Male athletes from the United States have won 85 championships, followed by those from Australia (18), Great Britain (18), and Switzerland (5). The US women athlete have won 93 titles singles; Australia has won six, and Belgium and Germany have each won five.


2. The Only grand slam to be played on three surfaces

The tournament was originally held on a grassy field in one of the organizers” gardens. A few years later, clay-surfaced courts were the new locations for the competition. Since the USTA National Tennis Center in New York features hard courts, the tournament was moved there in 1978. The grass was used from 1881 to 1974; clay from 1975 to 1977; and since 1978, DecoTurf has been the preferred hard court surface. In 2007, blue was introduced to the courts.


3. The Final Grand Slam of the year

In August 1881, the US National Championship”s men”s singles and men”s doubles were organized for the first time ever. In 1987, the US Open was declared the fourth and last Grand Slam of the year. The French Open, Wimbledon, and the Australian Open are the other three.


4. Tiffany the trophy producer

The U.S. Open Trophy, which measures 18 inches in height and weighs 10 pounds, has been produced by Tiffany & Co. since 1987. Both the winner of the men”s and women”s singles competitions receive the trophy.


5. First Grand Slam competition to use a tie-breaker

The US Open was the first Grand Slam competition to use a tie-break to determine a set when the score was 6-6 in 1970. After using a “best-of-nine-point sudden-death tie-break” from 1970 to 1974, the tournament switched to the International Tennis Federation”s (ITF) best-of-12 points format. The only Grand Slam tournament out of the 4 to utilize a decider at 6-6 in the final set is the U.S. Open. Wimbledon, however, recently made the decision to include a regular tiebreaker at 12-12 in the final set. As for the Australian and French Open, the player is required to win by two games in the last set.


6. The job of Ballkid is a very desirable job to have at the US open

They make $11/hour and get to keep the Ralph Lauren outfit that they wear which might be more than they will actually make on an hourly bases. Ball-kids cannot show any emotions while working and without a doubt, the ball-kids get the best seats in the house while on the job.

Real Estate News

Billionaires are Planning to Build a New City Near San Francisco. Imagine how their Utopia Could Look.


There has been speculation about different billionaires secretly buying up areas of land in a very remote area of Northern California. Finally they are talking about their plan.


The company that wants to build a new city in northern California posted renderings online. California Forever posted CGIs of the "walkable community."


The images show people kayaking, fishing, cycling, dining outdoors and installing solar panels. 

Take a Look

Happy Birthday, Iris!

Iris!!!! Your style is bold, classic, and ohhhhh so fun

(reminds me of my mom!) @iris.apfel

We LOVE You Maui

Loved seeing this paddle out supporting Maui.

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For Sale

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322 Emerald Bay


6 Bedrooms | 7 Bathrooms | 5,493 Sq.Ft.


A highly desirable and rare luxury 6 bedroom Emerald Bay residence has come to market. Flawless custom construction seamlessly incorporates a clean contemporary style with affluent coastal living.


This home was designed with ultimate privacy in mind and to enjoy the ocean and Catalina views. Nearly 5500 square feet of spacious living surround an exquisite outdoor courtyard complete with a spa, covered dining loggia, outdoor fireplace, grilling station and lush landscaping. Nearly every room welcomes ocean breezes and ample natural sunlight through over-scaled windows and doors. Several balconies wrap the front exterior of the home extending the living area.


The chef's kitchen boasts high-end appliances, a large island and a dumb waiter to transport food items from the garage level. The three-car garage includes a space for a golf cart that will easily whisk you down to Emerald Bay’s pristine white sand beach. 



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There are currently 2 active homes for sale in Emerald Bay

ranging in price from $11,995,000 to $14,900,000.

We have 1 property in escrow.

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Maura Short is known for her strong work ethic, broad industry know-how, and passion for architecture, in addition to her extensive network, confidentiality, and moral code. Combined with her wide-ranging local expertise, all of these assets result in favorable outcomes for both buyers and sellers under her care.
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