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Category Archive: ‘Interesting Houses’

Micro-Housing

int

Here’s another guy who insists on ‘disrupting’ real estate.  While the mobile devices are handy, are people – especially the affluent baby-boomers who are making the real estate market, going to give up their more-traditional homestead to live in a 320sf tin can?

http://www.forbes.com/sites/petertaylor/2016/07/19/meet-kasita-the-micro-housing-start-up-thats-about-to-revolutionize-real-estate/

You can tell immediately that Jeff Wilson, the 42-year old founder of Kasita, an Austin-based micro-housing start-up, has been courting venture capital. He has his sales pitch nailed—which is pretty impressive for a former university dean and professor who used to live in a dumpster.

When I ask Wilson what fundamental problem his company is solving he tells me without flinching: “Kasita is on the verge of disrupting the urban housing market in ways not seen in real estate and development in 150 years.” Wilson’s confidence may just be spot on. And perfectly timed.

Over the past decade my wife and I have asked each other countless times why everything else we own is completely mobile with the glaring exception of real estate. It’s not an unreasonably philosophical question. Every current aspect of our personal and business lives—from banking and corporate communications to reading the news or planning a vacation—now runs entirely off of five mobile devices and a wireless hotspot. So why do we still sleep in a house every night with two-foot thick brick walls that hasn’t moved an inch in 128 years?

Seeing a massive, mobility-starved void in the dead center of one of the largest segments of the US economy (while living in a dumpster), Wilson is betting that his tech-stuffed, 320-square foot, portable living capsule (a.k.a. casita, or “small home”) is poised to transform the fundamental concept of what real estate means to a new generation of Millennials, empty nesters, and upwardly mobile creative types (e.g., us) who are looking to trade-in their 30-year mortgage for mobility, simplicity, and financial independence.

Read full article here:

http://www.forbes.com/sites/petertaylor/2016/07/19/meet-kasita-the-micro-housing-start-up-thats-about-to-revolutionize-real-estate/

Posted by on Jul 22, 2016 in Interesting Houses, Jim's Take on the Market, Market Conditions, Modular Homes, The Future | 4 comments

French Castle

It’s hard to fathom how magnificent castles were built centuries ago. One group set out to understand just that by building their own masterpiece two hours outside of Paris. Tucked away in a forest, a team of master builders and archeologists are attempting to construct Guédelon, a castle from the 13th century, using only medieval techniques.

Posted by on Jun 22, 2016 in Interesting Houses, Jim's Take on the Market | 2 comments

Hiking Banker’s Hill

They asked, “If you could do anything today, what would it be?”

Let’s go for a hike!

I had found this old article a while back, so we went for it:

http://www.sandiegoreader.com/news/2010/nov/03/roam-maple-canyon-bankers-hill/

2016-06-19 10.40.18

2016-06-19 10.48.10

2016-06-19 10.51.04

Spruce Street Bridge

Midpoint of the Spruce Street Bridge, looking south down the canyon:

the midpoint of the Spruce Street Suspension Bridge

2016-06-19 10.59.43

2016-06-19 10.59.58

2016-06-19 11.08.14

2016-06-19 11.15.28

2016-06-19 11.16.39

2016-06-19 11.17.46

Later I found these other hikes, so I need to go back with my uncle Bob who has lived in this neighborhood for the last 40+ years and take a better look around:

http://www.sandiegoreader.com/news/2012/oct/24/roam-seven-bridge-walk/

http://www.sandiegoreader.com/news/1998/aug/20/stroll-through-bankers-hill-serves-some-early-san-/

http://www.sandiegoreader.com/news/2005/may/12/bicycle-or-foot-discover-charms-san-diegos-distinc/

http://www.sandiegoreader.com/news/2008/aug/20/bankers-hill-stroll/

Posted by on Jun 19, 2016 in Interesting Houses, Jim's Take on the Market, Local Flavor | 2 comments

PBR Pays

hefs grotto

Hat tip to Susie for sending this in!

http://abcnews.go.com/Entertainment/wireStory/billionaire-door-neighbor-buying-playboy-mansion-39654765

Hugh Hefner’s Playboy Mansion is about to acquire a new owner — the wealthy businessman who lives next door.

Representatives for Playboy Enterprises and Daren Metropoulos confirmed Monday that Metropoulos’ bid to buy Hefner’s man cave is in escrow.

Both sides declined to reveal the sale price until escrow closes, but a representative for Metropoulos said terms would allow Playboy Magazine’s 90-year-old founder to remain in the mansion for the rest of his life.

The home in LA’s fashionable Holmby Hills was originally listed at $200 million, but local real estate agents said at the time that appeared ridiculously overpriced. A nearby property sold last year for $59 million.

Metropoulos bought his current home next door to the mansion from Hefner in 2009 for $18 million.

The mansion, the scene of countless celebrity-filled parties and innumerable tales of sexual shenanigans, was built in 1927 and purchased by Playboy Enterprises in 1971 for $1.05 million.

It sits on 5 acres and has 29 rooms, including a game house, home theatre, wine cellar, gym, tennis court, swimming pool and four-bedroom guest house.

Metropoulos’ home was built in 1929 and sits on about 2 acres.

“If the purchase closes and at some point after Mr. Hefner’s tenancy ends, Mr. Metropoulos intends to reconnect the two estates, ultimately returning the combined 7.3-acre compound to the original vision executed by noted architect Arthur R. Kelly and its first owner, Arthur Letts, Jr., the department store heir whose father conceived and developed Holmby Hills when it was the Wolfskill Ranch,” Metropoulos’ business, Metropoulos & Co., said in a statement.

“In the meantime,” the statement continued, “he is pleased to continue to have Mr. Hefner as his neighbor and feels fortunate and privileged for the opportunity to serve as a steward of this historic property.”

The 32-year-old executive is the former co-owner and co-CEO of Pabst Brewing Company and co-owner of Hostess Brands, maker of Twinkies and other popular snacks. With his father and brother, he’s a principal in the family investment firm Metropoulos & Co.

Posted by on Jun 7, 2016 in Interesting Houses, Jim's Take on the Market | 0 comments

Move to the Backwoods

For those who are looking for a more adventurous lifestyle, consider these outposts – and don’t get put off by the first guy who is spending millions, the rest are cheaper:

Three Pistol Creek cabins are for sale, from $295,000 to $470,000. Potential buyers might want to consult their physician. “We’re all first-aid-trained, but if you really have trouble, and the weather is bad, you’re going to die,” said ranch manager Dave Dewey.

On the bright side, Amazon delivers. Pistol Creek Ranch, which has satellite Internet, is a stop on one of the nation’s last aerial wilderness postal routes.

http://www.wsj.com/articles/buyers-build-upscale-homes-in-the-backwoods-1463062790

Posted by on May 14, 2016 in Interesting Houses, Jim's Take on the Market | 1 comment