We have all heard the adage, location, location, location. But is that all there is to consider when looking for a home?

Initially choose an agent to assist you with locale, tax considerations, and purchase price. Look for a personable well liked agent with a well-known broker who will work for you promptly returning calls and keeping you informed.

If you have lived in the Desert for a long time you have witnessed Palm Springs demographic shifts from the 'hot Village' of mid-century and returning again to the 'in place to be'. For years PS had an anti-business reputation. Did you know the Outlet malls in Banning were initially offered to Palm Springs....and they rejected it and the millions of dollars of yearly revenue it produces?

Let's look at the shift in population, the impact of Generational Marketing and the Millennial Mindset. Currently many Baby Boomers are downsizing and live in communities such as Sun City or Portofino where everyone is 55 or older with inclusive activities. Others opt to retire in exclusive golf clubs with elegance, romance, and the best of everything.

Generations X, Y and Z are looking to be a part of the urban community moving from the suburbs to a city that is "walkable". Just take a look at the revitalization of downtown Los Angeles. Remodeled lofts house families working downtown who do not want to drive hours to and from work. Today many of the "in" restaurants in LA are downtown close to the Staples and Music Center where one can easily catch a concert or basketball game.

When purchasing a new home you must choose an experienced Realtor to represent YOUR interests and not have a conflict as a "dual agent" representing both sides. The Realtor should encourage the buyer to have separate inspections from the seller with additional inspections for roofs, pools and other items not covered by the general inspection.

Before purchasing you must be aware of existing lawsuits and construction defects. Either side can go to the Indio Court and run a Civil Index for plaintiffs and defendants to see the litigation with which the buyer/seller is involved.

Homes in gated communities have Home Owners Associations (HOA'S). They first emerged in the 1960's and had early covenants and deed restrictions that were exclusionary against African Americans and those that were Jewish. Some properties could not be sold to a Black or Jew until 1948 when Shelley v Kraemer ruled these covenants unenforceable.

However, private contracts kept them alive until The Fair Housing act of 1968 banned them. The HOA is usually formed by the real estate developer for the purpose of marketing, managing and selling the homes and lots. It grants the developer privileged voting rights until selling a predetermined number of lots and membership is not optional.

You must read the governing documents like Conditions, Covenants and Restrictions (CC&R's) BEFORE purchasing the property. Your lawyer will assist you and explain possible problems and tax considerations, such as a tax free exchange. I always say "it is a lot cheaper to hire an attorney in the beginning than before a problem erupts and the legal fees escalate."

If you are in a HOA, review your HOA paperwork NOW, understanding that you will need to abide by them. Then place them in a safe place.

Now that you have a new home when you drink there, don't get behind the wheel and be involved in an auto accident (whether it is your fault or not) or get arrested for a DUI...I don't need the extra business.


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