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Wednesday, April 23, 2014
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Author Archive: Tim Jones

Pool construction causes damage to neighboring yard

Q: I live on the west side of Fairfield and recently our neighbor behind us decided to put in a swimming pool that is currently under construction. If you know anything about the soil over where we live, it’s pretty sandy. You can’t just dig a hole because it’s a little like digging at the beach. […]

Considering a lease/option versus a purchase

Q: What is better? Rent-to-own or purchasing a home without rent-to-own? My best friend says you can get into rent-to-own with 1 percent down, but is it more beneficial for a person that is trying to restore their credit? A:  That’s a very timely question. Historically, rent-to-own was pretty much confined to purchasing cheap furniture and televisions. […]

How do we change our home to community property?

Q: When my husband, then my boyfriend and I purchased our home in 1990, we had the title on the deed listing us as Tenants-In-Common so that we could protect our individual interests in case we went our separate ways. We are now in 2014 and have been married for several years. How do we […]

Caught in a possible ‘double-ending’ sale

Q:  Late last year I bought my first home, a condominium. I should say upfront that, unbeknownst to me at the time, the Realtor who both listed the condominium and represented me in the sale is the president of the homeowners association. I never met the seller because they had long since moved out and […]

New neighbor demanding right of way through our property

Q: My brother and I own a 40-acre parcel off of Pleasants Valley Road in Vacaville. We’ve lived on it, with our families, ever since our father died almost 25 years ago. There is a large parcel behind us, most of which goes straight up the hills, that’s always been vacant. Well, apparently some guy […]

Do I have to cooperate if my landlord wants to sell the house?

Q: I’m renting a house in Fairfield and the owner has just put it up for sale. My first question is whether the owner do that while I’m renting? Doesn’t he have to wait until my lease is over? The other question is whether I have to let strangers into the house to view it? […]

We called the police on our neighbors, now they’re harassing us

Q:  I have a question about how to deal with my neighbors. We’ve live in Dover Terrace South for almost 20 years now. My husband and I are both in our late 70s and my husband is wheelchair bound. About three months ago some kids moved in next door. I call them kids but they’re […]

How can we correctly transfer a home to our son?

Q: In 2008 our son and his wife lost their home in a foreclosure. So we went out and bought another home, in our names, and he and his family have lived there  since. He has always paid the mortgage, taxes, etc. and treated the house as his own. Since then, both he and wife […]

Can PG&E just show up, cut the lock and get on my property?

Q: I have a question concerning easements. Pacific Gas & Electric Co. has an easement on my property. It’s a rural property and the problem is they just showed up, cut the lock on the gate and helped themselves. No notice or anything. Can they do that? Isn’t there some law to protect the property […]

How can someone claim they own the property my brother left me after he died?

Q:  Mr. Jones; my husband and I are longtime readers and we have a question that we don’t think you’ve ever addressed in all the years we’ve been reading. My brother died almost 10 years ago and left me a small property in Northern California. It’s not much, just about five acres and way outside […]

New IRS stance could spell relief to many who lost homes

On very rare occasions, a breaking news story occurs in the real estate world that I think is important enough that I dispense with the usual question-and-answer format. This is one such occasion. So as the emails continue to pile up I’ll offer my apology now to everyone who submitted questions this week and we’ll […]

Bad blood between neighbors keeps noisy wind chimes swinging

Q: We have some new neighbors who just moved in, and they have hung some loud wind chimes on their patio/trellis that borders our house (the side where our bedrooms are located). I can hear the bells inside our home even with all the windows and doors closed. After exchanging greetings and introducing ourselves, I asked […]

Why should I pay the Realtor that much in commission?

Q:  We are selling the first house we’ve ever owned and are moving back East.  We went in to sign closing papers and the escrow officer showed us a balance sheet that included the commission we’re paying to our Realtor. I know we agreed to a 6 percent commission, but I hadn’t really stopped to […]

Lot line adjustment or easement for a wrongly placed well?

 Q: I recently paid for a boundary line on my property to be surveyed. In the process we discovered that our well and holding tank may be 60 feet west of my property line. The adjacent property is undeveloped and the owner is my friend and neighbor who lives on another adjoining parcel just west […]

Neighbor flipped on fence deal, left with project partially completed

Q: We recently hired a contractor to install a new fence (a 6-foot concrete block wall) to replace our old wooden fence. I and my three surrounding neighbors have already put a deposit of $1,000 each and the left side wall is already completed and the right side wood fence is removed. Now my neighbor […]

Bulldog lawyer doesn’t seem to want a resolution, only money

Q:  I’ve been reading your extremely informative and helpful column for over a decade now and look forward to it every Saturday. And so I don’t want you to take this personally, and I know you probably won’t publish this, but I need to vent to the only lawyer I know. Two years ago my […]

October 05, 2013 | Posted in Business-local | Tagged , | 1 Reply

Protection for each party if buying a house as an unmarried couple

Q: I’ve read your column weekly for years now.  You have occasionally talked about steps that an unmarried couple should take before they purchase a home together. My boyfriend and I are now in escrow on our first home.  I’ve tried to talk him into seeing an attorney but he says it would be a […]

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