American Pacific Mortgage

American Pacific Mortgage

Monday, September 30, 2013

ARM loans - An Alternative

Steve and I just closed escrow on a home in Dana Point. We bought a condo-- due to location and view—and the amenities it affords us.

I don’t usually recommend condos, due to the control you hand over the HOA on a variety of issues. Then again, an HOA that is well-structured and managed can take a lot of headaches off the homeowner! We’ve just completed painting and are in process of installing new flooring ( before we move in this weekend. It has been quite an adventure so far!

Why am I telling you this? We selected a 5-year arm. Here's why...

Most of my clients prefer 30- or 15-year fixed rate financing, due to the opportunity to lock-in record low rates that will be fixed for the life of the loan. But as I always tell everyone, you need to consider the whole financial picture when selecting the loan program that is right for you. It all depends on how long you intend to remain in the home, as well as other factors.

In our case, we decided on a five-year ARM with a slightly lower rate than the fixed rate programs (that are still low!) as this better suits us.

So while 30- and 15-year fixed rate loans will remain the preferred financing approach for most people, don’t rule an ARM or even interest-only financing, if there is a reason this type of loan might better fit your personal financial needs.

Here's a photo of the before picture with yellow paint and brown carpet. Updates to follow!~

Thursday, September 12, 2013



My last update in May signaled the end of our record low interest rates. Rates jumped up rather rapidly by 1% and have drifted higher since, with a few minor ups and downs. When clients complain about rates that aren’t in the 3’s I remind them that we are still very near the bottom of the rate cycle over the last 30 years +.

Currently we are looking at rates in the mid-4’s to low 5’s for 30 year fixed programs, depending on various factors. You can still get a rate in the 3’s if you are interested in an ARM. The spectre of inflation, coupled with expectations of the end of Quantitative Easing, was the signal to the market to move, and it did!

We’ve seen property prices rise this year along with rising rates. The good news is, your property is worth a lot more than last year. However, the seller’s market has slowed in the last month, and is transitioning toward a buyer’s market today.


Maybe it’s my age, but it passed so quickly!

I went on the Rock Creek Pack Station Horse Drive in June. It is an endurance event as always! This time I was accompanied by four friends, and they weren’t quite prepared for what was to come. Luckily, they all rallied and had a great time. For the uninitiated, it involves moving stock (horses and mules) up the Owens River Valley from Independence to Rock Creek Lake above Bishop over four days and covering around 100 miles. It is hot, dusty, hard work, hot, dusty, long, and dusty. Did I say it is HOT and DUSTY? It is also a lot of fun. This year, for the first time, I was assigned to ride a mule and I was unsure whether it was a prize or punishment. Actually, the mule was great! The other “guests” were from all over the US, and mostly expert riders. I highly recommend it if you want to try something different! I have known the station owner Craig London my entire life and have ridden with them often over the years. My first time on a horse-- at age 3, was with Craig-- and our mothers. Here I am:


July saw us travelling to two weddings. We visited friends in Calistoga for the 4th, and then drove over to Nevada City for the first wedding. While in Napa, we drove over the hill to Aetna Springs (Pope Valley) and went swimming in their swimming hole, which was a treat. By way of explanation the Pope Valley is adjacent to Napa Valley to the east, and grapes grown there carry the appellation of Napa which is worth a lot of status and $$. We had dinner one night at the SolBar at the Solage, always a favorite.

Later in the month we spent a long weekend in Santa Barbara for Steve’s niece’s wedding, which was quite an extravaganza, at a private estate in Montecito. For his trip we rented a home ( in the Mesa area of Santa Barbara with an ocean view. Nice! Both weddings were beautiful and memorable events. Here is Steve’s niece Emily and her husband, Justin. Beautiful couple!

My daughter announced her engagement to her beau Paul in July, making it even more exciting! I had an early hint during their visit with us in June.

August was relatively quiet with only one vacation to Mammoth with Steve’s boys. We fished, hiked and generally relaxed. I LOVE Mammoth in the summertime. We hiked up the Rock Creek Canyon, and one day we rented a pontoon boat on June lake and lazed around, trying to catch fish without success. However we drank a lot of beer!
We had a quick family get-together in August, for my mother’s party, and here is a pic of my me, my sis, my daughter and my niece Page together:


We just returned from a weekend jaunt to Catalina at Two Harbors. We went over on a 44’ sailboat Friday morning (motoring) and returned Sunday.
The highlights were: snorkeling at Emerald Bay, running out of quarters at the pay showers on-shore (hmmm mid-shower) dancing at the Harbor Reef Saloon Saturday night, and attempting to sail in what felt like gale force winds for about fifteen minutes, during which time I was sure we were all going to perish. Luckily we didn’t. Figuring out which lines went where was complicated!

Oh, and did I forget to mention we fouled our mooring line (actually the sand line got tangled in our engine prop the last night) and we had to have the Harbor Patrol, a boat diver AND Vessel Assist all help us to remove ourselves from the harbor. What can I say, it was an adventure! Can’t wait to go again!

I also had a visit to Dallas squeezed in there… fun as always. I still swear by Stampede 66, the Stephan Pyle restaurant. This time we took the building’s driver for a tour of McKinney before getting dropped at the restaurant. Very stylish! I could get used to it! The walk home was only a few blocks through the new Klyde Warren Park. The Park offers exercise classes most weeknights (Yoga, Zumba, Cross-training) and has free concerts too!

I want to get in a plug for my favorite new restaurant in Dana Point, the Wine Bistro Dana Point. The Wine Bistro is next door to Hennessey’s and is owned by Paul Hennessey. I had the pleasure of meeting him at their First Anniversary Party this summer. I try to visit every Monday night for their special $20 three-course food and wine tasting. A great deal, and always fun and interesting food. Chef Nael does a great job.

After all this, I am tired and I just want to stay home for a while. I hope your summer was fun and eventful too!
Now I’m glad it’s football season and we can watch TV on Saturdays…