WATCH: Interview with Realtor Don Chin

LISTEN: Affordable Housing Tips Radio Show #107

LISTEN: Affordable Housing Tips Radio Show #107

by Marc Linn | Affordable Housing Tips Radio Show / November 24, 2019

Multimedia comes to! Beginning with today’s interview with Don Chin, many of our radio shows will also be available in video format. You can hear or watch either right here on the site. Humboldt County residents can listen to the Affordable Housing Tips Radio Show on KZZH, 96.7 FM; they can also view our videos on the Access Humboldt community TV channels.

Today’s show should interest anyone who is thinking of buying property: we interview Don Chin, one of Humboldt County’s well-respected real estate brokers. We were fortunate to have Don as an ally several years ago when we moved to Humboldt County from San Diego. He did a great job helping us buy a home here in Eureka, so we can personally vouch for Don.

Which Way the Housing Market?

Don starts out the interview by giving us his impressions of the current housing market, as well as his thoughts on the market for the coming year. He points out that as long as interest rates remain low, people will be able to get an attractive mortgage and the housing market is likely to remain strong. Here in Humboldt County, homes have been moving fairly quickly in a seller’s market. 

Predictions, of course, are always tricky. Don acknowledges that while many experts predict a continuation of the strong real estate market, anything can happen – especially in an election year. 

We moved on to regional or statewide issues. A recent concern for many of us here in Northern California has been the intentional blackouts PG and E (Pacific Gas and Electric) has conducted to reduce the risk of wildfires.

Don indicated he has not seen any evidence of a big impact on the real estate market, although the blackouts are a very recent development. If they continue and in fact wind up becoming the “new normal” – something nobody wants – Don agreed that investing in a generator system might be a good way to offset any negative impact on property values. Clearly this is pure speculation at this point since no one knows what the future holds for the blackouts.

This led to a brief discussion of the larger issue of the many difficulties California has been facing recently. In the absence of a genuine crystal ball it’s impossible to say whether California’s popularity in coming years will increase, decrease, or stay about the same.

Buying a House: Follow / Find the Money!

Next came a topic that, in retrospect, should probably have come at the very beginning: what can people do if they are renting and would like to become homeowners? Don explained that it’s usually best to begin by figuring out your financing. If possible, securing a preapproval letter from a lender is a good idea since many sellers will require this in order to seriously consider an offer.

Don also mentioned a couple of special mortgage programs that can offer excellent terms for those who qualify, e.g. “workforce housing” individuals, Native Americans, and others. (SPOILER ALERT: we plan to interview a mortgage broker in the near future to get more details about these programs.)

We concluded the interview by talking about things to look for in a realtor, and some of the ways recent advances in technology can help the house hunt. Don pointed out that, since buying a house is probably the biggest purchase most people will make in their lifetimes, there is a lot of emotion involved. A realtor who can maintain a calm and cool atmosphere throughout the whole process can be a big plus.

We hope you enjoy the show! Listen now by clicking on the player above. And if you like the show, or if you have any suggestions for additional topics or interviews, be sure to let us know.

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