With a burning housing market, many West Coast buyers are finding that they need to pay excessively high prices for older, less fashionable homes. Kenny Slaught notes that costs have been steadily climbing since 2008, and common reference, the Standard & Poor’s Case-Shiller home price index, reveals that Los Angeles home prices rose to their peak during April of this year since October 2007. Having moved beyond mere recession recovery, Southern California’s larger metropolitan areas are closing in on their former peaks. Slaught says the turnaround stems from a number of factors, which include interest rates, job growth and supply and demand. As current 30-year, fixed-rate mortgages are hovering around 3.5% or less, these enticing numbers nearing 3.31 percent (the record low hit in November 2012) are pushing many toward buying. These historically low rates, coupled with strong employment numbers, such as a 2.4% gain in Los Angeles County and a 3.5% rise in Orange County, makes it clear just why values have appreciated in an extraordinarily fast-paced manner. And although home prices vary considerably statewide, the inflated asking price of higher-end homes outpaces all other states with the exception of Hawaii. The feverish demand for housing cannot currently be met by the slim supply available, with many first-timers forced to opt for condominium-style units: obtainable and within a more modest price range.
In addition to being a renowned tourist destination, Santa Barbara has now become an epicenter for new and developing businesses, said Kenny Slaught. Lots of promising, new companies have been shaped in recent years, and many, counting AppScale, LastLine, TrackR, and Salty Girl Seafood, have come straight out of the University of California Santa Barbara. With over $200 million raised for area startups from private investors in the earlier year, the Central Coast boasts nearly twice the investment per capita in development than the greater Los Angeles area, a much larger market. While some may feel the fascination of Silicon Valley or Hollywood, domestic businesspersons recognize the impact of building a business in an environment that stimulates growth. So, the region is one of the best places in the country to launch and develop startups, generating outstanding biotech, medical, technology, and scientific businesses like Inogen, Raytheon, Sonos, and BioIQ.
Some of the most legendary Santa Barbara architecture includes the centuries old Hotel Virginia, El Pueblo Viejo district in historic downtown and the two pink towers of the Old Mission, housing retreats and festivals. Kenny Slaught has explained that the brightly colored tiles of the County Courthouse shows off brilliant murals and other striking attributes, and nearby the clock tower and observation deck allow for a panoramic view of the town. The Lobero theatre not only houses the regions premier performing arts events but also dates back to 1873 and was rebuilt in the 1920’s by George Washington Smith. The celebrated past of Santa Barbara shows the founder’s advanced planning: many antique, architecturally sound buildings line the city streets.