Hopefully we will be getting an occasional glimpse of what it’s like for Kayla to be selling real estate in Manhattan. The vertical living couldn’t be more different than what we’re used to around San Diego – she’ll never see another tract house with two-car garage and a yard!
She’ll be starting on the ground floor, literally and figuratively, but eventually she might get to see a few like this – thanks daytrip:
Selling homes in Manhattan is competitive, even without a central MLS run by the realtor board. Once an agent uploads a listing onto their company system, it gets distributed immediately to the regular portals StreetEasy (owned by Zillow), realtor.com, etc. where agents and consumers access the same data.
So even though there isn’t an official MLS, there is a commitment to full market exposure, and giving every agent a shot at selling each listing.
William (KK’s new boss) said that if agents were keeping listings in-house, then the Manhattan board of realtors would step in and do something about it.
It’s going to be competitive everywhere, but if every agent was committed to doing what was best for their sellers, then we could all get along nicely.
He also said that it is very rare that they do a home inspection. There isn’t a requirement for seller disclosures either – it’s up to the buyer’s attorney to include any questions about the property in the contract.
It has been a buyer’s market around Manhattan for the last couple of years. Maybe a sign of things to come everywhere?
Kayla will start her new job there on August 27th! I will let her share her experience here as she sees fit, but she couldn’t be more excited to begin this new chapter in her life!
Kayla has dreamed of moving to New York City for years, and has friends who have moved there already. In our annual Christmas letter last year, she told everyone that she planned to move to Manhattan in 2018 – and she’s doing it!
She has amassed five solid years of experience here, and is ready for a new challenge. She passed her New York real estate license test this week, and will be joining a successful realtor team in Manhattan next month.
While it will be devastating to not be around her every day to enjoy her sass and wit, we will carry on with our own adventures here, and enjoy watching from afar – and taking an occasional trip there ourselves.
I am incredibly proud of you Kayla, and love that you have the guts to pursue your dreams. It is a big step, but I know you can handle it!
I LOVE when the holidays come around because all the sales start up! Not only does Nordstrom have their Anniversary Sale in the summer (July 12 btw), but a lot of home stores have big sales too! And if you miss this week, you have Labor Day weekend coming up – somewhat scary?! Can’t believe we are already halfway done with 2018.
Here are some of my favorite stores to shop at when it comes to home decor:
1. Cost Plus World Market – Hurry because this sale ends tomorrow! You can take an extra 10% off PLUS free shipping on purchases $65+. If you’re a “World Market Explorer” member, you get to save 15% – remind me to sign up ASAP!
2. Gilt – I shop here for not only home decor, but also clothes, shoes, bags, towels … yeah you get the point LOL. The best thing about Gilt is that they always have sales going on! Make sure you bookmark this website!
3. Hayneedle – Up to 50% off indoor and outdoor products! This sale runs through July 8. I like Hayneedle because I am given the option to shop by style of the room rather than by product. Sometimes I’m not sure whether I want to have my home look farmhouse/cottage-like or more modern/contemporary so this really helps!
4. Joss & Main – UP TO 80% OFF! This is another site that always has great prices so yes, bookmark this stat! Fun fact – Joss & Main is a division of Wayfair so you’ll see some similar items on both websites!
6. Wayfair – I cannot say enough good things about this place. There are so many products and at all price points. They also provide a bunch of reviews on things so you can get an idea of how they look in person. This week they are offering up to 50-75% OFF EVERYTHING! Sale ends July 5.
My absolute favorite color in the world is BLACK. Yes, I love bright and happy colors too but black is classic, chic, and can go with anything. I not only like wearing black, but I also like to use it when it comes to the household.
Now I know some of you are probably thinking “OMG what the heck?! Black is so depressing and just too dark for my home.” Yes this can be true, but it is how you use the color and for what items.
Matte black these days has become increasingly popular. With the matte finish, it tones it down while also keeping the drama of the color. Now I’m not saying you should paint your whole house black! But there are ways you can introduce it into your home without going overboard.
Here are some items that I think would look awesome in a home!
1. Flatware – The detailing on the handle is so fabulous:
The kitchen is one of the most important rooms of the house, if not THE most important. This is the area where you put together your children’s lunches, cook the Thanksgiving turkey, or prep for your Saturday night dinner party with all your closest friends.
With that being said, a kitchen needs all the bells and whistles! You could spend a couple thousand on a kitchen, or you could end up spending $50,000+! Below are a few tips to help improve the kitchen you already have without having to go through your entire savings account!
1. Color-coordinate the outlets – Using a white outlet distracts the eye from the beautiful backsplash you spent LOTS of money on! You can avoid this issue by coordinate the wall plate and/or outlet with the color of the backsplash.
2. Hide your outlets with the appliance – Do we really need to see the chord dangling across the counter to plug in your toaster? Just move the darn toaster!
3. Sideways outlets – If you decide not to color-coordinate the outlets, turn them sideways so they will be less noticeable.
4. Charging station – Everyone has to charge their smart phone and iPad! Create a drawer right underneath the countertop, and make sure it has multiple outlets to keep the smart devices out of sight.
1. Under-cabinet lighting – The main purpose of this is to show off your clean and stunning countertops! Make sure to install the light towards the front rather than towards the back. When it’s in the back, it shows off your backsplash – which isn’t a bad thing! But it then provides no light for your countertops – which is where you will be preparing your food!
2. Cabinet lighting – Typically you would install the light at the top of your cabinets but things have changed. You can now install your cabinet lighting on both sides of the cabinet to give it that “glowing” effect. This is great if you are incredibly organized. If you tend to throw stuff in your cabinets, maybe stay away from this idea.
Avoid Irritating Situations
1. Maximize space on an island – A lot of people think it would be great to have the sink in the middle of the island. Depending how long your island is, it can make the area around the sink very limiting. Try to put it at one end of the island to maximize your prep space.
2. Lid storage – I hate having to organize lids for pots and/or Tupperware. A good idea would be to create a divider in the drawer so you have your lids and your containers separated yet in the same place.
Yesterday, we had the west coast premiere of Giorgio’s documentary film, ‘Owned: A Tale of Two Americas’ at the SF Doc Fest. Here are tidbits:
For those in the Bay Area, it is playing again at the Roxie on Wednesday night at 9:30pm, and will be at other film festivals too. Giorgio is hoping to have the film picked up by Netflix or similar entity, and possibly explore a series where he breaks out each piece of the film for further discovery.
The film turned out differently than expected. When Giorgio first started the project, he planned to document how suburbia fared during the mortgage crisis – that’s how I got involved. But as the filming progressed, the subject of the film turned dramatically.
In Owned, the bigger story revolves around a contrarian interpretation of the usually unassailable notion that home ownership is an essential element of the American dream.
“What the film is trying to say is that it’s this double-edged sword,” Angelini says. “Owning a home is great and it provides security, and if you do it the right way it builds strong communities. It dictates where you go to school and your propensity to move up socioeconomically. But at the same time, if you let capital interests invade this utopian ideal and run amok, it can quickly become commoditized to a point that it becomes dangerous for society.”
Through the stark sights of abandoned construction projects in sweeping vistas, Angelini posits that the housing industry is an insatiable beast that subsists on the back of an ultimately self-crippling economic culture.
“The idea of home had been reduced to the most efficient capitalistic desires,” Angelini says. “Instead of bushels of oranges, they decided the best land use was a collection of air-conditioned square feet. There was lack of human intention, where you could almost feel these [markets] printing out this landscape of homes.”
Owned is also a tale of two Americas. In the five years he spent making the film, Angelini expanded his view into other planned development communities and ran headlong into how racial and economic segregation is inextricably linked to middle-class suburbia after World War II.
“The original idea behind the film was rooted in the relationship between design and commoditization,” Angelini says. “It became very clear that I couldn’t tell that story without telling the other side.”
The film goes to hollowed-out neighborhoods in Baltimore to locate the contemporary effects of decades of discriminatory housing practices and policies.
“White flight didn’t happen by accident,” Angelini says. “It wasn’t a self-selecting, albeit racist, situation. It was very much encouraged by federal laws that were interpreted on the local level in particularly bad ways.”
Other video excerpts here – hopefully we’ll have a local showing before long:
It might not technically be ‘summer’, but it is upon us. The San Diego County Fair will be opening this Friday and my birthday is almost a month away – feel free to send gifts!
With the warmer weather starting to roll in, that also means it’s mosquito season. The number of diseases from mosquitos, ticks, and fleas has more than tripled in the US from 2004-2016. But the San Diego County health officials are on top of it this year! They are even offering free home inspections so they can see if you have any mosquito breeding areas.
Architectural Digest (one of my favs) posted an article with ways to repel the mosquitos without lighting a dozen tiki torches. The five below are my personal favorites but check out the article here to see even more:
1.Citronella Incense Sticks – I am ALL about saving money. For only $1.50, you can stick these bad boys into your garden OR put them in their terra-cotta holder and BAM! You have yourself a centerpiece!
2. Palo Santo Incense Bundle – Each eco-friendly incense stick is harvested from naturally fallen branches from Ecuadorian Palo Santo trees. Burn the end and spread the sage-scented smoke to energize your space and naturally ward off insects:
3. Citronella Hanging Coil – This is an awesome art installation for your home! It is a coil that you light at one end. Then as it burns, a stream of citronella-infused smoke comes out keeping the skeeters away!
5. Faux stones – This canister is great to have as decor around your outdoor patio or even on a side table! Saucer radiates a soft glow in faux stone for a modern take on midcentury terrazzo. Burns the midnight mineral or citronella oil for up to eight hours:
The weather is starting to heat up, which only means one thing… SUMMER is right around the corner! What? Didn’t 2018 just start? Yeah I have no idea where the last 4 months went either but summer vacation (ugh I miss those days) is here!
Now for San Diego, it’s pretty much 70 degrees year round. But we did have some rainy days this year so I think I can speak for all of San Diego, we are excited for longer days with maximum sunshine!
Nothing is better than kicking off summer than with a backyard party! There are so many unique designs to use for your backyard these days so I created a Pinterest board with some of my favorites! Check them out below!
1. Beer coolers – there are so many good craft breweries in San Diego so we got to make sure that beer stays cool! I love the idea of removing a plank out of the picnic table and inserting a cooler instead. Some people like to have a cooler on top of their BBQ so it’s within arm’s length for the cook.
2. Wine racks – calling all wine connoisseurs! You can do a DIY wine rack out of pallets and attach it to your fence or deck area!
3. Market lights – this is super trendy right now. Market lights definitely create an intimate setting. You only need a few strands too! Don’t go overboard and make it feel like it’s daylight.
4. TVs – this is super popular as well when it comes to outdoor entertaining. I like to make sure it has a proper cover though to keep it shielded from the natural elements. There’s some that you can buy but I’ve also seen people hide it behind small barn doors. And if this is all too much, I’ve seen people buy a roll down screen with a projector!
5. Fire pits – also another crowd favorite. People like to have them built into the ground but now you can buy them at the stores for a decent price!
6. Swim up bars – OK so this one might be a pretty expensive thing to do but come on they are so cool! I’ve only seen them at super fancy homes/resorts but if I could have a pool, I would totally have a swim up bar! However with small kids, it might get a little messy – I don’t think I want to be picking up soggy chicken nuggets LOL.
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