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5 Best Areas to Live in San Diego County

By PRPM | Homeowner / Renter Tips , San Diego County

Top 5 communities in San Diego

To say you live in San Diego is already a privilege that many love to boast about, but to say you reside in these 5 areas around the city, can make bragging rights all the more superior. Variances around the county make living in one spot or the other “best” for whatever it is you are particularly looking for. You may think that having accommodations within walking distance makes your town appealing or maybe it’s because the housing is more affordable compared to another area. Whatever the draw is, here is a list of the 5 most sought after communities within San Diego.

1) Carlsbad- Best place to leave your car at home and bike around town. The city has gone as far as to change its streetscape to accommodate more bike riders and make the bike-riding enthusiasts safer.
Median home value $721,000
Average rent $3,163

2) South Park- Tiny neighborhood with a tight-knit small business affinity. Eclectic shops and eateries in abundance.
Median home value $425,800
Average rent $1,741

3) La Mesa- An urban vibe feel without the noise and price tag of downtown. Filled with mom and pop shops, art and public parks.
Median home value $468,350
Average rent $2,127

4) North Park- Pedestrian friendly, plenty of coffee shops, cultural entertainment and craftsman style homes. Currently San Diego’s craft beer hub.
Median home value $484,500
Average rent $1,910

5) Chula Vista- School district alone is motivation for making this neighborhood one of the top. First in the county to be accepted into the “Live Well San Diego Initiative”
Median home value $464,720
Average rent $1,747

Overall you can’t go wrong with our perfect weather and picturesque location. It all comes down to what is priority #1 for you, your family, and your lifestyle. America’s Finest City has something for everyone.

Top 10 School Districts in San Diego County

By PRPM | Homeowner / Renter Tips , San Diego County

Top 10 School Districts in San Diego

Buying a home in an accredited school district is a top priority for many potential San Diego homebuyers. If you have kids currently, planning on starting a family or just looking to maximize your resale value of your investment, looking into the school district should be on the list. The making of a great school district has many ranking factors such as test scores, college readiness, SAT scores and teacher quality. Here is a best of list based on some of those factors…

  • San Dieguito Union High School- Award winning district that serves our Northern coastal cities as well as Rancho Santa Fe and Fairbanks Ranch.
  • Poway Unified- Largest district in the county and also ranked as the safest.
  • Coronado Unified- Serves students throughout 5 schools and holds the honor of having some of the best teachers in the state.
  • Spencer Valley Elementary- 9.9 square miles in the north east mountains of San Diego. Ranked #1 Safest District in California.
  • San Marcos Union- Also on the honor list of Top 10 safest school districts and reaches over 49 square miles.
  • Carlsbad Union- Accommodates more than 11,000 students that entails 2 high schools, 3 middle schools, 9 elementary and 2 alternative schools.
  • Grossmont Union High School- Noted as one of the most diverse in all of San Diego.
  • Chula Vista Elementary- Spans 103 square miles and serves 298,000 residents. 47 schools including 7 charters.
  • San Diego Union- Makes the #17 rank on the list of most diverse.
  • Lakeside Union Elementary- Known to have some of the best teachers in all of San Diego.

Parent or investor, you’ll want to pay close attention to the district your home is located in. Whether your motive is educational or financial, where the school closest to your property ranks could make all the difference.

Rental Scam Awareness

By PRPM | Homeowner / Renter Tips , Property Management

Rental scams are as old as the landlord-tenant relationship. The oldest most common scams were landlords keeping the security deposit, but now with the spread of technology, the opportunity for fraud has never been greater. The most current and frequent rental scam is people with no legal right to lease a property, leasing it to a potential tenant and making off with deposits and rent. Another common fraud practice taking shape right now is charging multiple potential tenants fees for background checks and taking off with that money, which can be significant. Preventing many sophisticated scams can be hard, but here are 12 tips that can help minimize your risk.

  1. Never Deal In Cash: Always make sure to leave a paper trail. Also avoid wiring money to anyone.
  2. Demand A Written Lease: Oral leases are valid in some states, but can be potentially problematic. As a tenant, demand a written lease and a signed copy. Get everything in writing to lay out the responsibilities and rights of both parties.
  3. Never Rent Sight-Unseen: Absolutely see the place before signing a lease or transferring funds. Not only does it prevent fraud, but allows you to see the pre-existing condition of the space you’re about to rent.
  4. Meet The Landlord In Person: Some scammers will readily meet tenants in person, many, especially ones who operate out of the country, will not. Many out-of-town landlords are legit, but insisting on a local landlord or property management company will make fraud less of a thing and this can also lead to a better service relationship in the long run.
  5. Talking With Current Tenants: Occupied properties are far less likely to be fraudulent. If there is a chance to speak with the current renters it may be in your best interest.
  6. Make Sure The Lease Identifies the Owner and/or Agent: Also take note of the lease in making sure it discloses information for a person who is authorized to receive notices and services. Double check the owners/agents addresses too. Make sure the address is not the same as the listed property or a PO Box.
  7. Identity Of The Actual Owner: Looking in from a tenant’s perspective it’s not always easy to determine who is authorized to lease a property. You should be able to do minimal research in county records. The owner’s identity should always be available unless it is a Land-Trust. That requires a little more work.
  8. Conducting Basic Research: Good Old Google. Take some time to do a Google search. Google the address, owners name and Management Company. You can also dive into property records and find out of it has ever been foreclosed on or sold to a bank. Both should be avoided, as these are targets for scammers and poor management.
  9. Be Aware Of Market Rates: Pay attention to housing market trends. The market for rentals is especially hot in the summer so beware of any deals being offered at far below market rent.
  10. Watch Out For High-Pressure Sales Tactics: Even though a landlord may have many potential applicants, be wary of anyone who attempts to get you to sign or lease, or hand over a substantial amount of money, right then and there.
  11. Use A Licensed Real Estate Agent: Having an agent represent you is a significant safeguard because it is less likely that a scammer will list a property with an agent and if you do fall victim, you can hold the agent responsible.
  12. Avoid Sub-Leasing: It is extremely risky for all parties involved. If taking over a lease is what you desire, work with the landlord to terminate the old lease and sign a new one directly with you.

In hindsight; be proactive. Be aware, and be proud. It’s your hard earned money being vested here.