A comfortable income is much lower in New Mexico than in California. The average income needed to live comfortably in New Mexico is…

Las Cruces is a wonderful city to live and work in. Located in the southwest corner of the ‘Land of Enchantment,’ this city is known for its affordability, natural vistas, and the friendliness of the people who live here. Las Cruces is a city for creatives, entrepreneurs, and retirees alike.

There is so much to enjoy both after work and on the weekends thanks to the rich history and culture, the breathtaking landscapes, and entertainment options. There really is something for everyone here!

Low Cost of Living in Las Cruces

The cost of living in Las Cruces is quite low for a city of its size. Home prices, rental prices, and utilities are more affordable than in many other cities in the United States. This translates to a lot more space—and amenities— for less.

Use the money saved for retirement, vacations, and enjoying all of the fun activities your new home has to offer. The lower cost of living is also reflected in most services, including haircuts, car and home maintenance services, concerts, art shows, restaurants, and more.

New Mexico Outdoor Activities

Las Cruces is home to the unique and awe-inspiring landscape of the Organ Mountains, named for their resemblance to the pipes of an organ. There are many trails within the Organ Mountains Desert Peaks National Monument. For an easy hike, try Soledad Canyon Trail. Adventurers can explore the Sierra Vista trail by bike or horseback.

And, there are many other outdoor activities to enjoy in the area. Rafting on the Rio Grande is a summer tradition, and Las Cruces boasts 4 beautiful golf courses. White Sands National Monument is just a 40-minute drive away. You can’t miss the white gypsum dunes for exploring—and sledding!

And while you’ve got plenty of beautiful desert and mountains to explore nearby, a short day trip to Ruidoso can be made for walks in the forest or to Truth or Consequences for scenic natural hot spring bathing right on the Rio Grande.

Abundant Culture & Art

Las Cruces and the surrounding area are a hub for New Mexican culture and art, and many are celebrated in festival form. There is the Las Cruces International Film Festival, the Harvest Wine Festival, and the Water Lantern Festival, to name just a few.

Art is celebrated in many forms, including pottery, painting, and jewelry making. The wondrously distinct architecture of the region contributes to what feels like a celebration of New Mexican culture around every corner in the city.

There are also unique museums to experience while living in Las Cruces. In fact, the city and surrounding area have over 50 art galleries and museums, with collections honoring the history, heritage and landscape of southern New Mexico.

Las Cruces Food and Drink

The different neighborhoods of the city each have a personality all their own, and the dining options in each neighborhood greatly contribute to each neighborhood’s feel.

For example, in downtown Las Cruces you can enjoy several watering holes such as Little Toad Creek Brewery & Distillery, The Boneyard Cantina, and Rad Retrocade for some old-school arcade games in a nostalgic atmosphere.

You may often find yourself in Mesilla’s charming old town, which offers beautiful public spaces, delicious dining options like La Posta restaurant and the haunted Double Eagle restaurant, and world-class shopping options for pottery, books, and New Mexican handicrafts and goods.

There are also a number of wineries in town, which make for a unique dining experience. Because of the year-round sunshine and low humidity, there are many outdoor dining options, and a number of pet-friendly patios too.

Loyal to Local

The local goods and services market in Las Cruces is always growing—the city brings out resident’s creativity! People here love supporting their small businesses.

One of the best ways to shop for all things local in Las Cruces is to check out the incredible bi-weekly farmer’s market. On Wednesdays and Saturdays, you’ll find locally grown honey, vegetables, and fruits, and locally made baked goods, soaps, jewelry, and more on Main Street downtown.

You can also find local products at small retailers throughout the city, all of whom take great pride in sharing their work with both visitors and residents alike. In fact, the maker movement is so strong here that the Cruces Creatives maker space was formed to provide connection and support to artists and makers in the area.

New Mexico State University also provides support for local entrepreneurs through the Arrowhead Center.

Las Cruces offers a fulfilling, exciting, and unique lifestyle for all. Take the first step towards making Las Cruces your new home by contacting us today.

 

Extreme pricing and home cost driving you out of the city?

Are you tired of the overcrowding, expensive property rates, property tax, and an unsettling state income tax? Move to Las Cruces, New Mexico! Life in the fast-paced city of San Francisco is fun, exciting, but painfully expensive. With property rates continually increasing, citizens are struggling to keep their homes. In 2019, San Francisco experienced homeless exceeding 8,000 people. With the city of San Francisco still adjusting to the wave of new citizens from the tech boom, more senior residents are struggling to access suitable housing. These dramatic population changes paired with an extreme cost of living make the California housing market as unsteady as ever, forcing many to move.

Leave your resume where it is, you can keep your job 

Yes, San Francisco’s job market may beat that of Las Cruces, New Mexico. But the recent pandemic over 87% of companies moved to remote work, creating a shift in how industries perceive employee contribution and involvement. Remote work has become an essential cornerstone of business.

Over 80% of companies plan to allow employees to continue working from home once the pandemic ends. By 2025, it is expected for 22% of the US workforce will be remote.

Companies are aware if they want to succeed, they must embrace remote work. Any why not, with employees working remotely demonstrating 35%-40% more productivity than their in-office counterparts. It as companies become more accepting of permanent remote work, why not live somewhere that is more affordable, has access to the great outdoors, and 294 days of sunshine a year? Goodbye fog!

Okay, I’ll move, but to New Mexico?

Now you might be thinking why New Mexico, and in a sense, why Las Cruces, New Mexico? Well, it’s more affordable than San Francisco; significantly so. On the Best Places Cost of Living calculator, New Mexico ranks at 84, while living in California is at a staggering 217. This is more than twice the national average of 100. That is a difference of 157%, meaning not only are property rates cheaper, everything is.

In Las Cruces, you can leave the crazy California income taxes and property tax behind. New Mexico property tax is ranked 18th lowest in the country at only 1.7%-4.09%, while San Francisco’s rate stays predominant at 13.3%, some of the highest in the country. With stifling property values exceeding the norm, life for the average San Franciscan is becoming harder and harder every day.

How are you supposed to enjoy the natural wonders of San Francisco if you’re working exceptionally hard to sustain your home?

Las Cruces is not only a haven from the impending property tax, but it also has one of the lowest sales taxes. The Las Cruces sales tax is about 6.75%, while San Francisco’s is 8.50%. Las Cruces doesn’t need to implement such high stakes tax because the community is thriving, growing at a steady 1.2-2 % every year. This is a growth that you and your family can enjoy. The move to New Mexico allows you to keep more money in your pocket and regain control of your financial future.

What does the housing situation look like in New Mexico

When you get down to it, living in San Francisco isn’t the wisest investment. The average rent rate in San Francisco is $3,216, at least three times the national average. Meanwhile, Las Cruces’ offers average rent rates of $985, which seems like a steal! Property costs are significantly more reasonable in New Mexico as well.

The average property in Las Cruces has about three bedrooms sitting at around 1,692 square feet and costing about $102 per square foot. Meanwhile, the average house in San Francisco only has two bedrooms averaging 1,625 square feet and costing about $1.5-3.5 million or $311 per square foot.

But why rent when you can own your own home?

Over 50% of Las Cruces citizens own their homes. San Francisco is drastically different; only 36.7% of the citizens owning their properties, and around 63.3% renting. Las Cruces’ reasonable pricing allows you to finally own the home of your dreams for a fraction of the cost in San Francisco. Now is the best time to make a move to New Mexico; with mortgage rates as low as 3% for 30 years, the home of your dreams could be yours in no time.

If you are ready for a new home in Las Cruces, New Mexico, check out our available Grind Real Estate properties.

Who represents who?

Let’s start by understanding what makes purchasing new construction different than other home sales. If you are dealing with someone sitting in a model home or that works for the brokerage listed as the selling brokerage, you are dealing with someone who is loyal to the builder. Legally and practically, they cannot provide you with advice on the purchase. At least, not advice that is in your best interest. Worse yet, many buyers think that by dealing with the builders’ representative, they will save money or get benefits that would not otherwise be available.

You can be certain that when dealing directly with the builder’s representative it will not save you money or get you extras that were not otherwise available. The builder simply gets to keep more money. They can’t afford to reduce the price of the home because it affects their ability to maintain appraised value for other homes. A good buyer’s representative can negotiate you the same extras. If purchasing new construction, you need a licensed real estate agent that understands new homes.

What difference does representation make?

Plenty. Is it really in your best interest to use the builder’s lender? Sometimes it is, sometimes it isn’t. Make sure to perform a thorough analysis of the different costs, interest rates, and loan payments.

An experienced buyer’s representative understands the process of building, completing, and closing on new construction. It dramatically impacts when you lock your interest rate, what rate you pay, and when you will be able to move in. A buyer’s representative assists you in monitoring construction. This is meant to assure you that your new home is ultimately what the builder represented and promised. It is now more critical than ever to be able to accurately project when you will be able to close, when you can give notice or close on your other home, and when you can begin to incur costs to move.

In the current market, your representative should conduct a thorough analysis of the terms.

  • Can the builder simply cancel the contract?
  • Can the price you negotiate increase at the decision of the lender?
  • If so, did you plan for that contingency with your lender so you are not left without a home? Then there is the ability of the home to appraise for the amount you are paying.

Your agent should be able to provide you with a comparable market analysis. This demonstrates the reliability of getting the necessary appraised value.

Lastly, get an agent who understands the process of building. They should know what a finished product should look like. They should also be present when you do the inspection of the home and/or the final walk-thru. Someone representing the builder simply cannot afford to be pointing out the flaws of the product they are selling. Getting it right prior to closing keeps the leverage with the buyer.

Get an expert to represent you

Most real estate agents don’t fully understand new construction and the subtleties involved with representing new home buyers. Find out how many new home buyers they have represented. Ask about their building expertise. Make certain they understand new home lending. You will be glad you did.

For representation when buying new construction, contact Grind Real Estate Group and we’ll make sure you get the best deal on your new home.

Why do you need a licensed real estate agent?

Many people see the current market as just setting a price and waiting for the offers to roll in. Because of this, there are more sellers trying to sell their own home or believing that this is really easy. Perhaps they are looking for a deeply discounted agent to simply do the paperwork. In fact, good agents will tell you that they are spending far more time on each transaction now than ever before. The knowledge required to sell and CLOSE a home in this market is much more than the normal market of two years ago. We’ll explore how a licensed real estate agent can more the process go smoothly when selling your home.

Pricing a home

Typically, sale prices are based upon closed sales that are comparable in size, location, and features. Those comparables help determine the amount that you can expect to be borrowed. Today, comparables often only reflect what we can expect an appraisal to look like but not necessarily a purchase price. When you hear homes are selling “above listing price,” it is not that the agent or seller did not know the proper price, but rather listed it at what they expected it might appraise for.

Until we catch up with actual closings on homes, there truly are two prices:

  • what the home will appraise for
  • what the home will sell for

Does it make a difference?

Buyers not properly represented may offer whatever they think it takes to get their offer accepted. They believe they can still borrow based upon sales price or believe that they can talk the seller into reducing the price if the appraisal is less than the purchase price. As a seller, it is important that you know if your buyer is capable of closing the purchase even with a lower than hoped-for appraised value. The question becomes, can it close?

If not, you took your home off the market for 30-45 days just to find out you have to go through everything to sell it again. Worse yet, you now know what it appraised for and therefore exactly what other buyers can get in maximum loan value. That means fewer qualified buyers.

So how else does an agent help?

In this market, they have to prepare to coordinate a multitude of showings in a relatively short period of time. With more Realtors® than homes for sale, every agent with a prospect that can afford your home (and many who really can’t) is going to try to be first to see and first to offer.

Your agent must then receive any and all offers and transmit them to you. Each offer should be analyzed for:

  • price
  • loan to value ratio
  • type of loan
  • likely appraised value, and
  • the likelihood the buyer can close.

Oftentimes, the highest price is not the best price.

Your agent may have to juggle all these offers to request from each agent submitting an offer to resubmit with their “highest and best.” Then the process of analysis starts anew. For buyers, we talk about losing home offers here.

When Your Offer is Accepted

Once you accept an offer, the fun really starts. Agents have to verify that Earnest Money was received and escrow (title) was opened. There are time limits to provide paperwork to the buyer and to negotiate on whether repairs will be made. Next, there is coordinating the inspection, analyzing the inspection recommendations and the buyer’s requests.

After that, there is tracking the loan officer of the buyer. It is important to make certain that there are no surprises in timing. Has that appraisal been ordered? Will it get to the lender on time to close? Did the closing disclosure get out timely to assure a timely closing? We haven’t even discussed getting the inspectors and appraisers in and out of the home.

Now, how about the title commitment? Anything to worry about there? Does the escrow/title officer have everything they need to close? Will they get paperwork soon enough that your agent can review your closing statement before you go down to sign?

Then, there is the fact that many states only allow the contracts to be put together by the regulatory people to be used by agents licensed through them. Will a seller know what has to be covered and where they will get the contract? Will you know what all the elements of this agreement mean to you?

The Bottom Line: You Need a Licensed Real Estate Agent

More than ever, this market requires an experienced, knowledgeable, and educated team of agents to assist sellers in maximizing their bottom line. You need licensed real estate agents to guide you through this challenging and detailed process. Going at it alone could result in the sale resulting in significantly more time, stress, and fewer dollars to take home.

If you’re retirement age, will you be able to live comfortably with the ever-increasing expenses of San Jose, California? Move to Las Cruces instead.

Have you bid on multiple homes only to have your offer passed on or rejected? Many folks are looking to buy their first home, relocate because they can now work remotely, or upgrade their home to a more appropriate space. The market right now in many locations is a competition like no other. Just take a look at our recent market report to see what’s going on.

This is most certainly a seller’s market! It has been caused by several things coming together at the same time. First, COVID stay-at-home orders initially caused many sellers to remove their homes from the market. That shrunk supply. As the pandemic raged on, interest rates stayed low and caused many buyers who had been on the sidelines to decide it was a great time to buy. That increased demand.