Real Estate Information Archive


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What do to in the Valley for Memorial Day

by Nate Martinez


Recreation Campus 159600 N. Bullard Avenue 
Come honor the Veterans and Active Military personnel who have and are protecting our great country at the 4th Annual Memorial Day Parade. Also, don't miss out on the Pancake Breakfast, provided by Archie's Deli!
Saturday, May 29. Pancake Breakfast starts at 6:30am, Parade starts at 8:30am, Pancake Breakfast - $3 - Parade - Free


23029 N Cave Creek Rd

Flag Display & Salute to arrivals at 6:30am. This is where we park our bikes along the many flags lined on Cave Creek Road and say "thank you" to those that are going into the cemetery. Also, the Arizona Central T-Buckets will be joining us and lining their hot rods along Pinnacle Peak Road. As family members go into the cemetery, we salute them and let them know their relatives buried in the cemetery are not forgotten.

Monday, May 31, 6:30 am – 10:00am


Avondale Civic Center

Come to this annual sunset service offered by the City of Avondale, American Legion Post 61, and VFW Post 40. Guest speakers, Presentation of Colors, Presentation of Bricks in Memorial Walk of Honor.

Monday, May 31, 7:00 – 8:00pm


Pera Club, 1 E Continental Drive, Tempe

The 8th annual Memorial Day celebration recognizes the memory of our war heroes through a spectrum of family events including food, games, entertainment, and raffles. The Academy Drum and Bugle Corps will debut their 2010 music.

Monday, May 31, 4:00 – 8:00pm - $8.00 day of event

Which is the right Sunblock to use?

by Nate Martinez

Every feel overwhelmed by all the brands of sun block there are to choose from? There are approximately 500 different brands available and half of them actually increase the speed at which malignant cells develop and spread skin cancer because they contain vitamin A or its derivatives, according to a new study that came out. Shockingly, only 39 out of 500 products examined were considered safe and effective to use. The report cites these problems with bogus sun protection factors (SPF):

1.) The use of hormone-disrupting chemical oxybenzone, which penetratest the skin and enters the bloodstream.

2.) Overstated claims about performance.

3.) The lack of needed regulations and oversight by the Food and Drug Administration.

The most disturbing disclosure is the use of vitamin A and its derivatives, retinol, retinyl palmitate which may speed up the cancer that sunscreen is suppose to prevent. Vitamin A has been used in sunscreen formulas because its an anti-oxidant that slows skin aging, however, an FDA study of vitamin A's photocarcinogenic properties, may actually cause cancerous tumors when exposed to sunlight.

In a perfect world, the ideal sunscreen would completely block the UV rays that cause sunburn, immune suppression and damaging free radicals. It would remain effective on the skin for several hours and not form harmful ingredients when degraded by UV lights. In the US there is currently no sunscreen that meets all the criteria. When we purchase a 30 or 45 SPF, we think we are getting the best coverage and protection from the sun's rays. However, the new report discovers those numbers are often meaningless and dangerous because products with high SPF ratings sell a false sense of security, encouraging people using them to stay in the sun for long periods of time. "People don't get the high SPF they pay for", the report says. "People apply about a quarter of the recommended amount. So in everyday practice, a product labeled SPF 100 really performs like SPF 3.2 and SPF 30 rating equates to a 2.3 and an SPF 15 translates to 2."

So how do you know which one to purchase? The following are a few of the brands rated the best out of the study:

1.) Badger, Face and Body SPF 30

2.) California Baby Sunblock Stick SPF 30

3.) Loving Naturals SPF 30

4.) Purple Prairie Botanicals, Sun Stuff and Sun Stick SPF 30

5.) UV Natural, Baby Suncreen and Sport Sunscreen SPF 30

6.) All Terrain Aquasport Performance and Kid Sport SPF 30

7.) Kabana Skin Care, Green Screen Organic Sunblock SPF 20

8.) Think Baby and Think Sport Suncreen SPF 30

These are just a few of the top rated choices, reported by this new study. To read the full article,



Sun Smarts: Stay Safe in the Sun!

by Nate Martinez

Arizona summers can be extremely hot and extended exposure to the sun can be damaging to our bodies. Anyone who has ever endured an Arizona sunburn, understands how painful and dangerous this can be! More than 1 million skin cancers are diagnosed each year in the United States. That's more than prostate, breast, lung, colon, uterus, ovaries, and pancreas combined diagnosed cases of cancer. The good news is that skin cancer can be prevented and there is alot you can do to protect yourself. Follow these practical steps - when used together, they will provide you with the best protection:

1.) Limit direct sun exposure during midday - UV rays are most intense during the 10am to 4pm hours. You should plan your outdoor activities before or after these hours.

2.) Avoid tanning beds and sunlamps - Tanning gives our UVA and frequently UVB rays which can cause serious long-term skin damage and both contribute to skin cancer.

3.) Ware shades and a hat - You should purchase sunglasses with at least a 99% UV absorption. And why not invest in a fun summer hat while you are at it!

4.) Use sunscreen with SPF of 15 or higher - The SPF number represents the level of protection against UVB rays, which are the type of rays responsible for the majority of skin cancers. A higher number means more protection. Sunscreens labeled "broad spectrum" also protect against UVA rays, which also contribute to skin cancer. You should apply generous amounts of sunblock every 2 hours if you are out in the direct sun for a long period of time. Don't forget your lips, ears, and feet. And don't skip putting sunblock on if its an overcast day, because UV light still come through, dispite the hazy sky.

5.) Check your skin - Check your own skin for unusual changes, new growths or changes in skin color. If you notice any moles that have changed size, shape or color, contact your doctor right away. Skin cancer is most easily treated if found early.

6.) Celebrate "Don't Fry Day" - remind your friends and family about the importance of skin cancer prevention and early detection on the National Council of Skin Cancer Prevention's "Don't Fry Day" on Friday May 28th, 2010. To learn more, please visit

Let's Go Phoenix Suns!

by Nate Martinez

“You always have a chance,” Gentry said. “You go out and play and see what happens. The Lakers are a great team, and nobody denies that. You have to be when you have pretty much the same team that’s coming off a championship. We have a ton or respect for everything they’ve accomplished, but our goal is to get to the NBA Finals, and the only way we can do that is to beat them. We have respect, but we have no fear.” Let's Go Suns!!




A/C Freon Changes That May Impact You

by Nate Martinez

The US Government has enacted a new policy requiring all air conditioners and heat pumps no longer use the ozone-depleting R22 refrigerant, which has been the HVAC industry standard in the manufacture of central air conditioning systems. Although this is great news for the environment, what does it mean for the average homeowner?

1.) While recharging an A/C or heat pump is not typical, if your system develops a leak or needs service, replacement refrigerant may be necessary. If your existing A/C system has R22, it can be serviced/recharged up to 1/1/2020. But after 1/12020, refrigerant manufacturers must cease all production of R22 refrigerant.

2.) There is no EPA requirement on the servicing or usage of existing R22 A/C units and the equipment may be used indefinitely. Substitutes for R22 may be available to service and recharge R22 however, any substitute should only be applied by NATE-certified technician.

3.) If you purchasea new air conditioning unit or heat pump system after 1/1/2010, it may or may not utilize R22 refrigerant. It will most likely use the more environment friendly R410A. Most manufacturers are already manufacturing A/C units and heat pumps with R410A and they are widely available today. If you are looking to purchase a new A/C unit, you should give consideration to the new R410A systems.

What should you do?

Have your A/C unit serviced on a regular basis. For newer homes, its recommended to have your A/C unit serviced annually. For older homes, you may need to have them serviced bi-annually. Changing your filters monthly will also significantly improve the performance of your A/C unit. Home warranties are also a great idea to keep on your home in the event a major system breaks down. Service One Home Warranty is one of the few warranty companies offering a comprehensive replacement package for A/C units, meeting the new Government required improvements. Learn more about the Service One Home Warranty at

Glee Live in Phoenix!

by Nate Martinez

The Golden Globe-Award winning muscial series, Glee is heading to Phoenix on a 4 city tour, starting in Phoenix on May 15th-16th at the Dodge Theatre. The other tour dates include, Los Angeles on May 20-21, Chicago on May 25-26 and New York City on May 28-29. Appearing in the concerts will be Lea Michele (Rachel), Cory Monteith (Finn), Amber Riley (Mercedes), Chris Colfer (Kurt), Kevin McHale (Artie), Jenna Ushkowitz (Tina), Mark Salling (Puck), Dianna Agron (Quinn), Naya Rivera (Santana), Heather Morris (Brittany), Harry Shum, Jr. (Mike) and Dijon Talton (Matt). Tony-nominated actor Matthew Morrison is not scheduled to participate. Series creator, writer and director Ryan Murphy conceived "Glee" Live! In Concert!, which will highlight musical numbers from the show including "Don’t Stop Believin," "Somebody To Love," "Jump," "Don't Rain on My Parade" and "Sweet Caroline." Don't miss out on this opportunity! For more details on tickets, visit

Existing Home Sales Surge in Most States

by Nate Martinez

Existing-Home Sales Surge in Most States in Fourth Quarter


RISMEDIA, March 22, 2010—Strong gains in existing-home sales were the predominant pattern in most states during the fourth quarter, with many more metro areas seeing prices rise from a year earlier, according to the latest survey by the National Association of Realtors®.

Sales increased from the third quarter in 48 states and the District of Columbia; 32 states saw double-digit gains. Year-over-year sales were higher in 49 states and D.C.; all but three states had double-digit annual increases.

Total state existing-home sales, including single-family and condo, jumped 13.9% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 6.03 million in the fourth quarter from 5.29 million in the third quarter, and are 27.2% above the 4.74 million-unit level in the fourth quarter of 2008. Distressed property accounted for 32% of fourth quarter transactions, down from 37% a year earlier.

Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist, said the first-time home buyer tax credit was the dominant factor. “The surge in home sales was driven by buyers responding strongly to the tax credit combined with record low mortgage interest rates,” he said. “With inventory levels trending down over the past 18 months, we expect broadly balanced housing market conditions in much of the country by late spring with more areas showing higher prices.”

According to Freddie Mac, the national average commitment rate on a 30-year conventional fixed-rate mortgage fell to a record low 4.92% in the fourth quarter from 5.16% in the third quarter; it was 5.86% in the fourth quarter of 2008.

In the fourth quarter, 67 out of 151 metropolitan statistical areas reported higher median existing single-family home prices in comparison with the fourth quarter of 2008, including 16 with double-digit increases; one was unchanged and 84 metros had price declines. In the third quarter only 30 MSAs showed annual price increases and 123 areas were down.

The national median existing single-family price was $172,900, which is 4.1% below the fourth quarter of 2008; the median is where half sold for more and half sold for less. “This is the smallest price decline in over two years, with the most recent monthly data showing a broad stabilization in home prices,” Yun said.

“Because buyers are taking on long-term fixed rate mortgages, avoiding adjustable-rate products, and trying to stay well within their budgets, the price recovery process appears durable,” Yun said.

NAR President Vicki Cox Golder, owner of Vicki L. Cox & Associates in Tucson, Ariz., said near-term market conditions will remain favorable. “Mortgage interest rates are expected to trend up later this year, but right now we have very good conditions with steadying home prices and favorable inventory in most areas, especially in the higher price ranges,” she said.

In the condo sector, metro area condominium and cooperative prices–covering changes in 54 metro areas–showed the national median existing-condo price was $177,300 in the fourth quarter, down 4.8% from the fourth quarter of 2008. Eleven metros showed increases in the median condo price from a year earlier and 43 areas had declines; in the third quarter only four metros experienced annual price gains.

Regionally, existing-home sales in the Northeast rose 11.1% in the fourth quarter to a pace of 1.03 million and are 33.6% higher than a year ago. The median existing single-family home price in the Northeast declined 5.6% to $234,900 in the fourth quarter from the same quarter in 2008, but with widely varying conditions. “In the Northeast, markets with lower median prices that have avoided wide swings, such as Buffalo, are generally showing consistent price gains,” Yun said. “Even so, some of the higher cost areas are showing signs of stabilization, such as Nassau-Suffolk, N.Y., and Boston.”

In the Midwest, existing-home sales jumped 14.5% in the fourth quarter to a pace of 1.38 million and are 29.9% above a year ago. The median existing single-family home price in the Midwest rose 1.1% to $141,100 in the fourth quarter from the same period in 2008, with the region accounting for the majority of metro areas experiencing double-digit gains.

Yun said markets with high unemployment rates in Ohio and Michigan experienced large price swings. “Big price gains in many Midwestern areas are due to a more normal range of home sales in contrast with predominately foreclosed sales a year ago,” he said.

In the South, existing-home sales rose 13.8% in the fourth quarter to an annual rate of 2.23 million and are 28.2% higher than the fourth quarter of 2008. The median existing single-family home price in the South was $153,000 in the fourth quarter, down 2.4% from a year earlier. “Affordable markets in the South that have relatively better local economies are seeing healthy price gains, such as Houston, Oklahoma City and Shreveport, La.,” Yun said.

Existing-home sales in the West jumped 16.2% in the fourth quarter to an annual rate of 1.38 million and are 18.2% above a year ago. The median existing single-family home price in the West was $227,200 in the fourth quarter, which is 8.9% below the fourth quarter of 2008, but with many areas showing notable gains.

“Markets in the West such as San Francisco, San Jose and Denver are showing double-digit price increases, and other markets like San Diego and Anaheim have begun to firm up,” Yun said.

For more information, visit

Watch Your Kids Around Water!

by Nate Martinez

Too often, firefighters hear people say, “it was just a few seconds.” Unfortunately, just a few seconds is all it takes for a child to drown. Drowning is the leading cause of death in Arizona for children under the age of five.

Most of these children drown in their own backyard swimming pool, but others drown in buckets, bathtubs, toilets, dog water bowls, canals and ponds. Small children are top-heavy, and they don't have the upper body strength to lift themselves out of one of these dangerous situations. Even if the child survives the incident, they are often left with permanent brain damage.

Drowning and near drowning can be prevented, and you can help! Anyone involved with the supervision of children needs to be aware of the dangers associated with any body of water. Below are some useful tips to prevent these needless tragedies.

  • Know where your children are at all times
  • Use an approved barrier to separate the pool from the house
  • Never allow children to be alone near a pool or any water source
  • Have life-saving devices near the pool, such as a pole/hook, or flotation device
  • Keep large objects such as tables, chairs, toys, and ladders away from pool fences
  • Post the 9-1-1 number on the phone
  • Do not allow children to play around the pool and store all toys outside the pool area
  • If you leave the pool area, take the children with you
  • Always have a “designated child watcher”
  • Learn to swim
  • Never swim alone, or while under the influence of alcohol or medications
  • Never swim when thunder or lightning is present
  • Never dive into unfamiliar or shallow bodies of water

Drowning Prevention Coalition of Arizona:
The Drowning Prevention Coalition, a community based organization comprised of parents, health and safety professionals and business leaders, exists to provide a forum to prevent drowning and near drowning through the promotion of education, legislative action and enhanced product safety.

What is HAFA?

by Nate Martinez

What is HAFA?

The Home Affordable Foreclosure Alternatives (HAFA) Program is a government-sponsored initiative overseen by the US Treasury Department and administered by Fannie Mae assisting all Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP)-eligible homeowners in avoiding foreclosure, specifically through short sales or deeds-in-lieu of foreclosure.1 HAFA was announced on November 30, 2009 in a HAMP Update titled Introducing the Home Affordable Foreclosure Alternatives Program.2

HAFA directs lenders to assist eligible homeowners in quickly and effectively implementing short sales or deeds-in-lieu by providing financial incentives to lenders that carry out foreclosure alternatives through the program's guidelines set forth in Supplemental Directive 09-09 Revised (revised March 26, 2010).3 The program was introduced in part with the intent to remove the stigma from short sales and help keep communities from being destroyed through massive foreclosures. HAFA in its current state is only applicable to conventional-type, non-Governmental Serviced Enterprises (non-GSE) mortgages and therefore does not apply to loans owned or guaranteed by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac.4 These organizations may have plans to release their own versions of HAFA.

If you're a homeowner looking for answers, or would like to determine if you qualify for HAFA, please contact our office today.

Displaying blog entries 1-9 of 9




Contact Information

Photo of Nate Martinez Real Estate
Nate Martinez
RE/MAX Professionals
20241 North 67th Avenue, Suite A1
Glendale AZ 85308
Fax: 602-532-7352

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