The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act – What it Means for Homeowners

Nar.Realtor

Introduction

While NAR remains concerned that the overall structure of the final bill diminishes the tax benefits of homeownership and will cause adverse impacts in some markets, the advocacy of NAR members, as well as consumers, helped NAR to gain some important improvements throughout the legislative process. The final legislation will benefit many homeowners, homebuyers, real estate investors, and NAR members as a result.

The final bill includes some big successes. NAR efforts helped save the exclusion for capital gains on the sale of a home and preserved the like-kind exchange for real property.

As a result of the changes made throughout the legislative process, NAR is now projecting slower growth in home prices of 1-3% in 2018 as low inventories continue to spur price gains. However, some local markets, particularly in high cost, higher tax areas, will likely see price declines as a result of the legislation’s new restrictions on mortgage interest and state and local taxes.

The following is a summary of provisions of interest to NAR and its members. NAR will be providing ongoing updates and guidance to members in the coming weeks, as well as working with Congress and the Administration to address additional concerns through future legislation and rulemaking. Lawmakers have already signaled a desire to fine tune elements of The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act as well as address additional tax provisions not included in this legislation in 2018, and REALTORS® will need to continue to be engaged in the process.

The examples provided are for illustrative purposes and based on a preliminary reading of the final legislation as of December 20, 2017. Individuals should consult a tax professional about their own personal situation.

All individual provisions are generally effective after December 31, 2017 for the 2018 tax filing year and expire on December 31, 2025 unless otherwise noted. The provisions do not affect tax filings for 2017 unless noted.

Major Provisions Affecting Current and Prospective Homeowners

Tax Rate Reductions

  • The new law provides generally lower tax rates for all individual tax filers. While this does not mean that every American will pay lower taxes under these changes, many will. The total size of the tax cut from the rate reductions equals more than $1.2 trillion over ten years.
  • The tax rate schedule retains seven brackets with slightly lower marginal rates of 10%, 12%, 22%, 24%, 32%, 35%, and 37%.
  • The final bill retains the current-law maximum rates on net capital gains (generally, 15% maximum rate but 20% for those in the highest tax bracket; 25% rate on “recapture” of depreciation from real property).

Tax Brackets for Ordinary Income Under Current Law and the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (2018 Tax Year) Single Filer

Current Law Tax Cuts and Jobs Act
10% $0-$9,525 10% $0 – $9,525
15% $9,525 – $38,700 12% $9,525 – $38,700
25% $38,700 – $93,700 22% $38,700 – $82,500
28% $93,700 – $195,450 24% $82,500 – $157,500
33% $195,450 – $424,950 32% $157,500 – $200,000
35% $424,950 – $426,700 35% $200,000 – $500,000
39.6% $426,700+ 37% $500,000

Tax Brackets for Ordinary Income Under Current Law and the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (2018 Tax Year) Married Filing Jointly

Current Law Tax Cuts and Jobs Act
10% $0 – $19,050 10% $0 – $19,050
15% $19,050 – $77,400 12% $19,050 – $77,400
25% $77,400 – $156,150 22% $77,400 – $165,000
28% $156,150 – $237,950 24% $165,000 – $315,000
33% $237,950 – $424,950 32% $315,000 – $400,000
35% $424,950 – $480,050 35% $400,000 – $600,000
39.6% $480,050+ 37% $600,000+

Exclusion of Gain on Sale of a Principal Residence

  • The final bill retains current law. A significant victory in the final bill that NAR achieved.
  • The Senate-passed bill would have changed the amount of time a homeowner must live in their home to qualify for the capital gains exclusion from 2 out of the past 5 years to 5 out of the past 8 years. The House bill would have made this same change as well as phased out the exclusion for taxpayers with incomes above $250,000 single/$500,000 married.

Mortgage Interest Deduction

  • The final bill reduces the limit on deductible mortgage debt to $750,000 for new loans taken out after 12/14/17. Current loans of up to $1 million are grandfathered and are not subject to the new $750,000 cap. Neither limit is indexed for inflation.
  • Homeowners may refinance mortgage debts existing on 12/14/17 up to $1 million and still deduct the interest, so long as the new loan does not exceed the amount of the mortgage being refinanced.
  • The final bill repeals the deduction for interest paid on home equity debt through 12/31/25. Interest is still deductible on home equity loans (or second mortgages) if the proceeds are used to substantially improve the residence.
  • Interest remains deductible on second homes, but subject to the $1 million / $750,000 limits.
  • The House-passed bill would have capped the mortgage interest limit at $500,000 and eliminated the deduction for second homes.

Deduction for State and Local Taxes

  • The final bill allows an itemized deduction of up to $10,000 for the total of state and local property taxes and income or sales taxes. This $10,000 limit applies for both single and married filers and is not indexed for inflation.
  • The final bill also specifically precludes the deduction of 2018 state and local income taxes prepaid in 2017.
  • When House and Senate bills were first introduced, the deduction for state and local taxes would have been completely eliminated. The House and Senate passed bills would have allowed property taxes to be deducted up to $10,000. The final bill, while less beneficial than current law, represents a significant improvement over the original proposals.

Standard Deduction

  • The final bill provides a standard deduction of $12,000 for single individuals and $24,000 for joint returns. The new standard deduction is indexed for inflation.
  • By doubling the standard deduction, Congress has greatly reduced the value of the mortgage interest and property tax deductions as tax incentives for homeownership. Congressional estimates indicate that only 5-8% of filers will now be eligible to claim these deductions by itemizing, meaning there will be no tax differential between renting and owning for more than 90% of taxpayers.

Repeal of Personal Exemptions

  • Under the prior law, tax filers could deduct $4,150 in 2018 for the filer and his or her spouse, if any, and for each dependent. These exemptions have been repealed in the new law.
  • This change alone greatly mitigates (and in some cases entirely eliminates) the positive aspects of the higher standard deduction.

To illustrate how the above-listed changes can affect the tax incentives of owning a home for a first-time buyer and a middle-income family of five, please see these examples:

Example 1: Single Buyer

Example 2: Middle-Income Family of Five

Mortgage Credit Certificates (MCCs)

  • The final bill retains current law.
  • The House-passed legislation would have repealed MCCs.

Deduction for Medical Expenses

  • The final bill retains the deduction for medical expenses (including decreasing the 10% floor to 7.5% floor for 2018).
  • The House bill would have eliminated the deduction for medical expenses.

Child Credit

  • The final bill increases the child tax credit to $2,000 from $1,000 and keeps the age limit at 16 and younger. The income phase-out to claim the child credit was increased significantly from ($55,000 single/$110,000 married) under current law to $500,000 for all filers in the final bill.

Student Loan Interest Deduction

  • The final bill retains current law, allowing deductibility of student loan debt up to $2,500, subject to income phase-outs.
  • The House bill would have eliminated the deduction for interest on student loans.

Deduction for Casualty Losses

  • The final bill provides a deduction only if a loss is attributable to a presidentially-declared disaster.
  • The House bill would have eliminated the deduction for casualty losses with limited exceptions.

Moving Expenses

  • The final bill repeals moving expense deduction and exclusion, except for members of the Armed Forces.
  • The House-introduced bill would have eliminated the moving expense deduction for all filers, including military.

Major Provisions Affecting Commercial Real Estate

Like-Kind Exchanges

  • The final bill retains the current Section 1031 Like Kind Exchange rules for real property. It repeals the use of Section 1031 for personal property, such as art work, auto fleets, heavy equipment, etc.
  • The exclusion of real estate from the repeal of 1031 like-kind exchanges is a major victory for real estate stakeholders, who had fought hard to preserve the provision for several years, and against long odds.

Carried Interest

  • The final bill includes the House and Senate language requiring a 3-year holding period to qualify for current-law (capital gains) treatment.
  • Again, real estate stakeholders prevailed against long odds to preserve the incentive of capital gains treatment for carried interests in the final legislation.

Cost Recovery (Depreciation)

  • The final bill retains the current recovery periods for nonresidential real property (39 years), residential rental property (27.5 years) and qualified improvements (15 years). The bill also replaces separate definitions for qualified Restaurant, Leasehold, and Retail improvements with one definition of “Qualified Improvement Property.”

Qualified Private Activity Bonds

  • The final bill retains the deductibility of qualified private activity bonds used in constructing affordable housing, local transportation and infrastructure projects and for state and local mortgage bond programs.
  • The House bill would have eliminated the use of private activity bonds.

Low Income Housing Tax Credit

  • The final bill retains current law. However, a lower corporate rate will negatively impact the value of the credits in the future, and will result in less low-income housing being developed.

Rehabilitation Credit (Historic Tax Credit)

  • The final bill repeals the current-law 10% credit for pre-1936 buildings, but retains the current 20% credit for certified historic structures (but modified so the credit is allowable over a 5-year period based on a ratable share (20%) each year).
  • The House bill would have entirely eliminated the Historic Rehabilitation Credit.

Provisions Not Included in the Final Bill

Rental Income Subject to Self-Employment Tax

  • The House-introduced bill would have subjected rental income to self-employment taxes. This provision was dropped from the House (and final) bill.

Examples of How The New Law Will Affect the Tax Incentives of Owning a Home

Example 1 – First-Time Homebuyer. To illustrate how the changes to the standard deduction, repeal of personal exemptions, mortgage interest and state and local taxes might affect a first-time homebuyer, consider the example of Barbara Buyer. Barbara, an accountant making $58,000 per year, is single and currently rents an apartment. She also pays state income tax of $2,900 and makes charitable contributions of $2,088, but the total of these is lower than the standard deduction, so she claims the standard.

Barbara’s tax liability for 2018 under the prior law is as follows:

Salary income $58,000
Standard deduction ($ 6,500)
Personal exemption ($ 4,150)
Taxable income $47,350
Tax $ 7,491

Under the new law, Barbara would get a tax cut, computed as follows:

Salary income $58,000
Standard deduction ($12,000)
Personal exemption ($ – 0 -)
Taxable income $46,000
Tax $ 6,060

Tax Difference Under New Law. Even though Barbara would not get the benefit of the personal exemption under the new law, her higher standard deduction would more than make up for the loss. In addition, the lower tax rates of the new law would help deliver the total tax cut of $1,431 ($7,491 – $6,060) as compared with the prior law.

However, let’s take a look at what happens to Barbara if she were to purchase the condo that she likes costing $205,000. She takes out a 30-year fixed rate mortgage at 4% interest, putting down 3.5%. Assuming she buys early in 2018, her first-year mortgage interest would total $7,856 and she would pay real property taxes of $2,050.

As a first-time homeowner, her tax liability under the prior law would be computed as follows:

Salary income $58,000
Mortgage interest $ 7,856
Real property tax (1%) $ 2,050
State income tax (5%) $ 2,900
Charitable contributions (3.6% of income) $ 2,088
Total itemized deductions ($14,894)
Personal exemption ($ 4,150)
Taxable income $38,956
Tax $ 5,393

Note. Under the prior law, Barbara would lower her tax liability for 2018 by $2,098 ($7,491 – $5,393) by purchasing the condo. This is the financial effect of the prior law’s tax benefits of buying a home. This amount effectively lowers her monthly mortgage payment by $175 per month.

Now, let’s take a look at what her tax situation would be under the new law as a first-time homebuyer:

Salary income $58,000
Mortgage interest $ 7,856
Real property tax (1%) $ 2,050
State income tax (5%) $ 2,900
Charitable contributions (3.6% of income) $ 2,088
Total itemized deductions ($14,894)
Personal exemption ($ – 0 -)
Taxable income $43,106
Tax $ 5,423

Tax Difference Under New Law. Even though Barbara would still be able to claim all of her itemized deductions under the new law, she would lose the benefit of her personal exemption. This would mean that her taxes would actually go up under the new law by $30 ($5,393 – $5,423). But far worse, look at the tax differential between renting and owning a home. This difference, which was $2,098 under the prior law, has now shrunk to just $637 ($6,060 – $5,423), or $53 per month. In other words, under the prior law, Barbara was given a strong incentive to move into the ranks of those who own their home. The new law still offers her an incentive, but it is a shadow of what it was, and is unlikely to be very compelling.

Family with Teenagers in Living Room

Example 2 – Middle-Income Family of Five:

To illustrate how the changes to the standard deduction, repeal of personal exemptions, mortgage interest and state and local tax deductions, and increase in the child credit might affect middle-income family of five, consider the example of Steve and Melinda. Steve is a store manager making $55,000 per year, while Melinda is a school principal, earning $65,000. They have three children, ages 17, 14, and 9. Steve and Melinda recently relocated from another city, and while they are getting to know their new community, they are leasing a home. But they would like to purchase as soon as they identify which area is the best fit for their family. As renters, they pay state income tax on their salaries, totaling $6,000, and also make some charitable contributions equaling $3,120. Since these itemized deductions do not reach the level of the standard deduction, they do not itemize, but they expect to do so when they purchase their home.

Here is a look at Steve and Melinda’s tax liability for 2018, computed under the prior law:

Salary income $120,000
Standard deduction ($ 13,000)
Personal exemptions (5 x $4,150) ($ 20,750)
Taxable income $ 86,250
Tax before credits $ 12,870
Child tax credits (2 x $1,000 less $500 phase-out) ($  1,500)
Net Tax $ 11,370

Under the new law, Steve and Melinda, as renters, would get a tax cut, computed as follows:

Salary income $120,000
Standard deduction ($ 24,000)
Personal exemption ($ – 0 -)
Taxable income $ 96,000
Tax before credits $ 12,999
Child tax credits (2 x $2,000) ($   4,000)
Net Tax $ 8,999

Tax Difference Under New Law As Renters. Steve and Melinda lose the big benefit of the personal and dependency exemptions for the two adults and three children. And the increase in the standard deduction is not enough to make up for this loss. However, the big increase in the child credit for the two younger children and the lower tax rate are enough to deliver them a tax cut of $2,371 ($11,370 – $8,999) as compared with the prior law.

Let’s now consider how Steve and Melinda’s tax situation changes if they were homeowners, rather than renters. Assume they find an ideal home in a nice neighborhood that costs $425,000, and after offering a 10% down payment, Steve and Melinda take out a 30-year fixed mortgage at a 4% rate. Let’s say that their real property tax for the year totals $4,250, which is just 1% of the home’s value.

Here is how their 2018 tax liability would be computed as homeowners, under the prior law:

Salary income $120,000
Mortgage interest $ 15,189
Real property tax (1%) $  4,250
State income tax (5%) $  6,000
Charitable contributions (2.6% of income) $  3,120
Total itemized deductions ($ 28,559)
Personal exemptions (5 x $4,150) ($ 20,750)
Taxable income $ 70,691
Tax before credits $  9,651
Child tax credits (2 x $1,000 less $500 phase-out) ($  1,500)
Net Tax $  8,151

Note. Under the prior law, Steve and Melinda would lower their tax liability for 2018 by $3,219 ($11,370 – $8,151) by purchasing their home instead of renting. This is the financial effect of the prior law’s tax benefits of buying a home. This amount effectively lowers their monthly mortgage payment by over $268 per month.

Now, let’s take a look at what her tax situation would be under the new law as a home-owning family instead of renters:

Salary income $120,000
Mortgage interest $ 15,189
Real property tax (1%) $   4,250
State income tax (5%) (limited by $10,000 cap) $   5,750
Charitable contributions (2.6% of income) $   3,120
Total itemized deductions ($ 28,309)
Personal exemptions ($ – 0 -)
Taxable income $ 91,691
Tax before credits $ 12,051
Child tax credits (2 x $2,000) ($  4,000)
Net Tax $  8,051

Tax Difference Under New Law As Homeowners. For Steve and Melinda, most of their itemized deductions from the prior law are preserved by the new law. They are limited slightly ($250) by the $10,000 limit on the deduction of state and local taxes. However, they lose big by the repeal of the personal and dependency exemptions, which equal $20,750 for this family. Even so, Steve and Melinda receive a small tax cut of $100 ($8,151 – $8,050) under the new law, thanks to the much larger child credit and lower tax rate. But as renters, they received a tax cut of almost $2,400. Thus, buying a home becomes a net tax change of almost $2,300.

What happened? What happened is that the new law is taking away most of the tax benefits of owning a home. Under the prior law, this benefit was $3,219 for Steve and Melinda. But under the new law, they enjoy only a benefit of $948 ($8,999 – $8,051). This gives them a benefit of just $79 per month, which is obviously a far weaker incentive to own.

[1] Meaning one does not have to itemize deductions in order to claim it.

[2] This means that for single individuals, the benefit of the deduction would be fully phased out for taxable income levels above $207,500 and for married couples filing joint returns, the benefit of the deduction would be fully phased out for taxable income levels above $415,000.

[3] With the exception of some restrictions on the deductibility of entertainment expenses, the normal business expenses of real estate professionals were not changed by the bill.

[4] The new law provides single individuals with a $12,000 standard deduction.

[5] The prior law provided a tax credit of $1,000 for each child.

[6] The new law increases the standard deduction for married taxpayers filing a joint return to $24,000. Since this is higher than Andy and Emma’s itemized deductions, they will claim the higher standard deduction.

[7] The new law doubles the child tax credit to $2,000 per child.

[8] At this income level, Bobbie and Emil’s personal exemptions would be phased out.

[9] At this income level, Bobbie and Emil’s itemized deductions are reduced by 3% of the excess of their AGI ($445,000) over the 2018 phaseout threshold of $320,000, or by $3,750. $28,000 – $3,750 = $24,250.

[10] The new law repeals the itemized deduction phaseout (so-called “Pease” provision).

[11] These are made up of mortgage interest, state and local taxes, and charitable contributions.

[12] At this income level, David and Valerie’s personal exemptions would be phased out.

[13] At this income level, David and Valerie’s itemized deductions are reduced by 3% of the excess of their AGI ($450,000) over the 2018 phaseout threshold of $320,000, or by $3,900. $35,000 – $3,900 = $31,100.

[14] The new law repeals the itemized deduction phaseout (so-called “Pease” provision).

For more on the Tax Reform – click here.

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What’s your Walk Score

 

Have you heard about {Walk Score}? Every home on the MLS has a walk score ranked 0-100 which tells you how close you are to restaurants, schools, parks, bars, and more. Home buyers prefer properties that are walkable to some of their favorite places.

The gated 228 Montclair Lane in Salinas {priced at $459,900 for a 3 bed/2.5 bath} has a walk score of 54 with these hot spots less than half a mile:
Starbucks
Target
Michael’s
BJ’s Brewhouse
McDonalds
Safeway
El Dorado Community Park

Check out the walk score at some of my other public listings:

  • 7070 Rainbow Drive #5, San Jose, CA
  • 233 Montclair Lane, Salinas, CA
  • 1225 Vienna Drive #202, Sunnyvale, CA

Looking for a place near work, a gym, or something in particular? Contact me at (831) 801-8206 or (650) 503-4110 to find a home that fits your lifestyle.

 

 

Keeping the Heart of the Holidays Alive

Today, you may be running from errand to errand with a to-do list as long as your arm; stress may be building up about finding “the perfect gift,” preparing for visitors, or taking that trip. You may wonder how you’ll ever get everything done in time. Many non-profits are in the same state of wonder, regarding their year-end donations. Many organizations rely on holiday spirit and kindhearted contributions to fund the coming year.

If you are looking to donate your time, or resources, to those less fortunate, there are many ways to do so. The cause closest to my heart is the Intero Foundation.

Supported by Intero’s offices in Hollister, Gilroy, Santa Clara and Silver Creek (San Jose), the Intero Foundation donated $49,860 to local nonprofits that support low-income and disadvantaged youth in August of 2016. Since its inception, the Foundation, which is funded, promoted and governed by Intero Real Estate Services’ agents and employees, has raised more than $4.5 million. All members of the Intero community – executives, staff, and agents – donate their time to further the Foundation’s mission.

Of specific interest to this round of giving is the $23,860 grant that was presented to Camp Taylor. It’s one of the largest single grants that the Intero Foundation has ever given and will go to support various programs within the nonprofit.

“We are so honored of the positive impact the Intero Foundation is having on the children in our communities,” said Tom Tognoli, Intero President & CEO. “We are especially proud of the incredible grant that was given to Camp Taylor and look forward to the positive impact it will provide to the organization.”

Ugly, Christmas, Sweater, Party, Kristen, Jurevich, Kristen Jurevich, Realtor, Real Estate, Homes for sale, How to buy a home, House, Intero, Intero Foundation, Holiday Giving, Donations, Cherity, Bay Area, California, CA, Santana Row

Intero Foundation will be having their 2nd Annual Ugly Sweater Party on Thurs. Dec 15th.

A fun way to give back is by attending Intero Foundation’s benefit on Thursday, December 15th for Intero Foundation at Rosie McCann’s on Santana Row.  This 2nd Annual Ugly Sweater Party will take place from 6pm-10pm and is open to all ages. Come hungry! All proceeds from food will be donating to the Intero Foundation! Don’t forget your most festive apparel!

Some of my favorite recipient’s are

If you are looking for a way to give of yourself this Christmas season, but don’t know where to start- here are several online resources that can keep you informed giving options and where you can volunteer:

Merry Christmas and Happy Giving!

Kristen Jurevich, (831) 801-8206

Hollister Independence Day Rally

While you’re enjoying some family fun in downtown Hollister this weekend, make sure you come see 621 B Street at 12 o’clock on saturday for an open house, the property just had a price improvement so get it while its hot!

View the virtual tour here:

http://www.tourfactory.com/1575947

Some fun upcoming events in Hollister

The San Benito county Saddle Horse Show & Rodeo has been providing family entertainment for all ages since 1929. This year is the 83rd annual running of the event and the fun starts on June 23rd at 6:15pm in downtown Hollister for the parade.

The following days of June 24th-26th at Bolado Fairgrounds you can enjoy the art shows, rodeo & horse shows, and also some tasty dinner being provided by El Grullense and Mansmiths BBQ. But to kick off the fun, this weekend on 6/18 at the Guerra Family Cellars is a country tribute concert, so be sure to check it out. To view the entire schedule of the saddle horse show and rodeo you can visit the official website at http://www.sanbenitocountyrodeo.comrodeo parade

photo credit Benitolink.com

 

 

Some fun to be had this summer in Hollister

This summer is a great time to go out and enjoy some of Hollister’s great wineries, excellent dining, and evening fun. The Leal vineyards is a beautiful winery located right off of fairview rd in Hollister. It is known for its excellent wine, great food, and beautiful setting.

estate34

Some more fun to be had this summer is at the Guerra winery located on John Smith Road. This summer (like summers in the past) the Guerra winery is hosting summer night Concerts starting on June 18th with a country artist tribute.Hollister concert1

Photo credit: Hollisterconcerts.com Lealvineyards.com

 

San Benito Olive Festival partners with local Realtors

July 2015  

     This not-for-profit festival partners with San Benito County Realtors to promote awareness and appreciation of the region’s world-class culinary agriculture and premier artisans while supporting causes with festival proceeds.

olive_branch3
The San Benito Olive Festival Board embraced San Benito County REALTORS ®, who are tireless champions of our area, to spread the word about the third annual celebration of local gourmet delights in October.
Many local real estate agents jumped at the opportunity to purchase the limited 250 tickets to share with clients and friends all across Central California and the Bay Area. Phyllis Swallow of Bertao Real Estate Group says she is planning on giving her tickets to friends, clients, and family, so they too can “enjoy the chef demonstrations” and high quality reusable Olive Festival bags. REALTORS® are also looking forward to supporting local artists from Aromas Hills Artisans, San Benito Arts Council, El Teatro Campesino and others which unites painters, jewelry designers, ceramic artists, writers, performers and more from the Tri-County area.

Offering much to celebrate, taste and enjoy, the San Benito Olive Festival is nestled among the rolling hills of the historic Bolado Park located just 20 miles north of hiking trails at Pinnacles National Park. Life seems to take on a scenic ride on Highway 25, as the Hollister Freedom Rally motorcycle riders tour through San Benito’s beautiful vineyards and ranches. “Our county’s beautiful back road scenery is hands down San Benito County’s BEST feature,” says Donna Silva with Nino Real Estate. Whether you are riding your iron horse or mounting up with your boots and saddle, San Benito’s country spirit is alive.
San Benito County is an agricultural community, with 80% of the land producing fresh food. The executive chef cooking demonstrations, a very popular feature, will include San Benito legend Dorothy McNett and will enlighten attendees about the organic produce being farmed right in our backyards. Hollister agent Sandy Troia with Intero Real Estate Services is already telling clients to “not make plans” for October 17, 2015, because guests will be amazed by the delicious local certified organic fruit and vegetable selections from Coke Farms, Swank Farm Organics, Heirloom Organic Gardens, Phil Foster’s Ranches, just to name a few.

Ranching has been a way of life since San Benito’s inception with cattle and horses roaming throughout the nearly 1400 miles of countryside from Aromas all the way to Bitterwater. When people move to San Benito from the Bay Area, they are attracted to the peacefulness of wide-open spaces and beautiful working landscapes. They continue to discover surprise treats with real flavors from San Juan Bautista’s Morris Grassfed beef, 100% free range grassfed beef from Paicines Ranch, pastured poultry, heritage livestock, heirloom orchards and many more local harvests from renowned farmers in the area.

San Benito County residents are excited to share the increasingly popular wine trails that offer fun events year round. Guerra Family Cellars offers a summer concert series with their tasting room open regularly to the public. Calera wine seems to be a local favorite among REALTORS®, and the Pinot Noir is one that hits everyone’s lips. Pietra Santa’s Cabernet Sauvignon has won numerous medals in the San Francisco Chronicle wine competition, and they also produce organic and infused olive oils. Karen Para with Intero Real Estate Services is looking forward to “seeing old friends and making new acquaintances” at the San Benito Olive Festival VIP tent, which has private tastings with world-class local wineries and crafted beers.
SBC olive oil producers are well rounded in the San Benito community. The Brigantino family are not only realtors in the San Benito County area but also partners in producing an award-winning organic olive oil. Hollister’s Brigantino Olive Oil took gold in the Los Angeles International Olive Oil Competition. Olive oil is not just for tasting. Another highly acclaimed award winner is Oils of Paicines. Their recent harvest won gold and best of show in the 2015 Central Coast Olive Oil competition. They also use their olive oil in bath and body products, Saddle Oil for saddle, boots, and leather products and even have a line of Olive Leaf Tea.

San Benito REALTORS® enthusiastically procured the Olive Festival tickets before the official public ticket release on July 1. “It is the right thing to support the Olive Festival! We need to get the word out about this event,” states Marilyn Ferreira of Intero Real Estate Services. REALTORS® understand the importance of shopping local to help the community and promote a healthy lifestyle.
Visitors from Monterey, Santa Cruz, Santa Clara, San Mateo, and San Francisco counties will enjoy many musicians throughout the festival from Mr. O’s Academy of Arts. REALTORS are looking forward to supporting fellow real estate agent David Baumgartner, who will be singing in his 10-member 1950s do-wop band. San Benito County Association of Realtors President-Elect Valerie Smith comments, “The added entertainment of the live music and variety of vendors up the level of interest and make it an event that I look forward to each year!” Musicians and performers will be entertaining in various locations around many fine food and premier artisan booths and the VIP area.

San Benito real estate agents are greatly connected to the local community and truly are the gatekeepers to the wonderful San Benito County. “I also love going to local events that are sponsored. The sense of community is fantastic…this is a must attend event,” adds Hollister’s Intero Real Estate Services Manager Renee Kunz. Special thank you to all the REALTORS® and San Benito County Association of Realtors board office who support local nonprofits and encourage volunteerism to continue making our area a great place to call home.

For more information on the San Benito Olive Festival, visit sanbenitoolivefestival.com and “like” theirFacebook page for updates and announcements. Phone: (831) 537-7270

The terms REALTOR® and REALTORS® are trademarks of the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS®. The trademarks, along with the Code of Ethics and Standards of Practice, set members apart from other real estate licensees.