Do I Need to Homestead My Property?

What is a homestead?

A Homestead is a special provision in California to allow homeowners to protect their property from forced sale to satisfy their debts within certain limits. It does not protect the homeowner against trust deeds, mechanics liens or prior-to-filing liens. The Declaration of Homestead is the form that must be acknowledged and recorded to protect the resident.

What property does it cover?

  1. House and adjoining property
  2. Condominiums and town homes
  3. Farms
  4. Life Estates

You may have only one homestead at a time.

How much does it protect me for?

  1. Head of households $75,000
  2. Persons who are mentally or physically disabled, or those who are over the age of 65 $100,000
  3. Any resident who does not qualify for one of the above $50,000

Are there any requirements to be met to make the homestead valid?

  1. A statement showing the claimant is the head of the family and stating the name of the spouse
  2. A statement showing that the claimant is residing on the property and claims it as his or her homestead
  3. A description of the premises and an estimate of cash value
  4. The declaration of homestead may need to contain a statement as to the character of the property, and that no former declaration has been made.

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Faster Pace for Southland Home Sales; Median Sale Price Edges Higher

As seen on

La Jolla, CA—Southern California’s housing market perked up a bit in April, with sales rising more than usual from March and dipping below a year earlier by the smallest degree in six months. Home prices edged higher again but at a slower pace, the result of more inventory, affordability constraints and less pressure from investors, a real estate information service reported.

A total of 20,008 new and resale houses and condos sold in Los Angeles, Riverside, San Diego, Ventura, San Bernardino and Orange counties last month. That was up 13.4 percent from 17,638 sales in March, and down 6.6 percent from 21,415 sales in April last year, according to San Diego-based DataQuick.

On average, sales have increased 1.4 percent between March and April since 1988, when DataQuick’s statistics begin. Southland sales have fallen on a year-over-year basis for seven consecutive months, but last month’s decline was the smallest since sales fell 4.4 percent last October.

This April’s sales were higher than in April 2012 and 2011. That’s a significant change from February and March this year, which had the lowest home sales for those particular months in six years. Sales during the month of April have ranged from a low of 15,303 in 1995 to a high of 37,905 in 2004. Last month’s sales were 17.1 percent below the average – 24,133 – for all Aprils since 1988. March sales were 27 percent below average.

“The housing market’s pulse quickened a bit in April. If the inventory grows more, which we consider likely, it’s going to make it a lot easier for sales to reach at least an average level, which we haven’t seen in more than seven years. There are certainly factors undermining housing demand, including affordability constraints, credit challenges and less investment activity. But there are considerable forces fueling demand, too: Employment is rising, families are growing, and more people can qualify to buy again after losing a home to foreclosure or a short sale over the past eight years,” said Andrew LePage, a DataQuick analyst.

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