THE SECOND STORY | August 22nd, 2019


I like trees. I like older trees. But I don’t like trees that are located close to or over a property line (owned by other folks), or trees that have gotten so huge that they become a danger to people or to property.

As I’ve said before, the good news is that with the heavy rains this past winter, the drought is over! The bad news is, that the drought is over.

That means it’s time to assess what’s growing where. Or what trees are dead but nobody is around to care.

Recently, I’ve seen two examples of where a tree on one lot has done damage to a sewer line running through another lot. And the other is an overgrown tree  undermining other folks’ pavement and even undermining the tree owner’s garage.  However, both of these owners own units, live out of town, and seem to subscribe to the saying ‘If I don’t see it then I don’t know about it.’

I asked permission to go over to one owner’s property with a Certified Arborist and we were shocked at what we saw: 2 super tall dead trees and the yard was a mess. Garbage bins were strewed all over. Obviously, the property manager never looked at it. And the tree that started this, was outgrowing the dirt around it, crammed next to the garage, with branches hanging well into 3 neighbor’s yards.

Enough complaining. On to the next item.

Alameda Real Estate this Week

Broker Tour Tuesday 11

Active listings 55 (including 1 Back on Market, 2 Active Contingent, 9 Price Changes)

 Pending 12 (including 2 Pending Sale want Backup Offers)

 Sold 12

For this week’s sold properties:

DOM 37   Low 1  Average 14  Median 13

Have a fun weekend! Feel free to contact me if you have questions about the Alameda market!

best, marilyn

my ‘for fun’ blog… 

THE SECOND STORY | August 15th, 2019

Warrior time….(not quite yet)

Somebody’s getting ready for basketball season! 








I  think it stands for ‘no whiners.’

Regarding my “local knowledge quiz” about bridges (3 weeks ago?) I realized that the Fruitvale Bridge has a Railroad Bridge as well.

  • Image



Let’s get down to biz.

Alameda Real Estate this Week

Broker Tour Tues 8

Total active listings 55 (including Active/Contingent 1), and 1 BOM (back on the market) 

Total pending 49 (including 13 pending sales – want backup offers)

Total sold 18

DOM (average days on market)

High  143

Low 7

Average 39

Median 29

Have a fun weekend!  We are weather wimps here, in A-town. Too hot, we complain. Too cold, we complain. We want it ‘just right.’

This evening was just right!

best, marilyn

THE SECOND STORY | August 8th, 2019

And this is why we like Alameda….


Photo of SF, was taken this week from the Alameda coastline!

Alameda Real Estate this Week

I had the opportunity to close a sale for some lovely Buyers, this week. They were up against 6 offers. They wrote such a clean offer (no contingencies – including no loan/appraisal). It’s such an honor to work folks like these.

Total active listings: 51, including 1 AC (active contingent), 1 BOM (back on the market), 4 PCH (price changes)

Total pending listings: 64, including 16 pending sales – backup offers wanted

Total sold 12

You may notice that one of the price changes was from $26,000,000 down to $2,600,000. It was clearly an error…but….we sometimes make them when inputting listings into the MLS.

I thought the following might give you an idea of DOM (days on market), per the MLS, as of tonight:

This doesn’t include commercial (storefront) properties…of which some have been on the market for well over a year.

DOM (days on market)

High 135 days

Low 7 days

Average 33 days

Median 24 days 

Have a great weekend! Call me, text, leave an email for me if you have questions about the Alameda market. I’m not a genie so I don’t have all of the answers, but I might be able to give you an idea of what’s going on.

best, marilyn


THE SECOND STORY | August 1st, 2019

Winner of the week, Get me to rehab…..

I’m not sure when or where I took this photo..but it was recently. I’m sure I was somewhere on the island and the sun was filtering through the leaves on the tree, over a brick patio! Amazing what I see when I look down! I think I was riding my bike and stopped somewhere. I do NOT take photos while I’m actually riding my bike.

Way back in the day, maybe 3-4 years ago, I used to give names to properties that were on the Broker Tour: Winner of the Week, Get me to Rehab, etc.

I decided that it was too personal for me to give names to the properties. Every motivated Seller would like to have a motivated Buyer whether it’s a palace or a dump. Plus, it’s not my job to say what I think…it’s always about the people, not just about me.


Broker tour Tues 11

Active listings 49 including 1 AC (Active-Contingent, on selling another property),  1 BOM (Back on the  Market), and 1 PCH (Price Change)

Pending 23

Sold 20

Short, sweet!

Let me know if you have questions….!

Best, marilyn

Have a fun weekend!

THE SECOND STORY | July 25th, 2019

Traffic jam…bridges up!

I happened to be at Bay Farm Island on a workday. It was about 5pm and a sailboat (under power, no sails) came motoring through. It’d been a while since I’ve seen these bridges up.

I usually try to avoid the bridges at certain hours: like early morning and late afternoon rush hours. The blessing is that I do have some flexibility, living and working here.

But when I travel out to Pleasanton, for some Realtor meetings or classes…whoa! That’s a whole new ball game. I just pray that nobody gets into an accident and that the drivers will settle down and move slowly, should there be an accident. Slowly beats totally stopped.

Oh, and I’ve learned to take the side streets coming back from Pleasanton. They’re much better than the freeways.  And then I can go to Costco in San Leandro! And I’ll finish my adventure by going over the BFI bridge, back home to A-town.

Alameda Real Estate this Week

Tuesday tour 14

Active listings 50, including 1 AC (active/contingent), 2 BOM (back on market), 4 PCH (price changes)

Pending 69

Sold 20

That’s a wrap…slow down, smell the flowers, get rejuvenated. The one thing that I’d like to do is to wash my car. It’s disgusting. And while the folks at the South Shore Car Wash do a good job ($30+ bucks), the CADEAU is a mess again with bird poop, and who knows what else in less than 1 day. Oh well.

If you have ??? about this market, so do I. The good news is that my Buyers purchased a lovely townhome on the lagoon, this past Tuesday. There were 7 offers. It should close within the next 2 weeks or less. It’s so nice to be referred to lovely people, by a lovely ‘used-to-be agent.’

best, marilyn

THE SECOND STORY | July 18th, 2019


-Berkeley/Albany Buyer Needs a Place to Cook with Lot for Days

-Oakland/Berkeley Buyer Needs Public Transport or High Cool

-Oakland/Berkeley Buyer Needs Yard and 1.5 miles to BART

These are three samples of many emails I get each week (actually each day). These are from a group that is known as Total Agent Network and some agent needs to recommend another agent so she/he can be part of it.

For the most part, many agents get that some these agents look like idiots. (IMHO).

-Look at what they wrote…

-“Buyer needs a place to cook with Lot (from the Bible?), or a large lot for days at a time?”

-“Buyer needs public transport or High Cool?” Is cool missing an ‘s’ at the beginning of the word ‘cool?’

-“Buyer needs yard and 1.5 miles to BART. ” No house, just a lot with a yard, and it needs to be 1.5 miles from BART?

I encourage all of my clients to NOT have me list their property on this site. I’d rather we use the MLS so the world (as necessary) is told that their property is on the market.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again…Alameda is a small town. If you whisper a secret on Park Street, in 10 minutes the secret will be on Webster.

Same with selling a house…somebody, either on Park St. or Webster, will say they would have paid a lot more than the Buyers did. And then the Sellers will feel ripped off, because the property wasn’t fully exposed to the market.


Roses from my front yard.

Alameda Real Estate this Week

Tues tour 17

New 17

Total active 64 (including 1 Active-Contingent and 3 Price Changes)

Total pending 65

Sold 13

OK…have a nice weekend. You deserve it!

Best, marilyn



THE SECOND STORY | July 11th, 2019

Random summer A-town thoughts…..


+I was fast asleep (well, I thought I was), and I heard the garbage trucks coming up and/or down the street.

Usually, I put the green, blue, and gray bins out on a Wed. night, for an early Thursday pickup. But last Thursday was Independence Day. Nah, they’d take the day off.

OMG! I felt like I was back in 3rd grade. Hauling the cans out (that’s what they were back then), chasing the truck down the street because my oldest brother and I didn’t put them out the night before.

I got up…hauled the bins out…just in case. I went back to bed.

It wasn’t a dream. The ACI folks had emptied them! And they came back the next morning…knowing that lots of the bins weren’t out the evening before. One big hurrah for ACI (Alameda County Industries).

+And speaking of bins….I cleared out my car trunk this week. Threw a bunch of stuff away…and then I came across 2 mini fire extinguishers. The indicator said they were nearly empty.

I called the folks @ Alameda Fire Extinguishers (the company that recharges the 7 extinguishers this building)…and found out that the Kidde’s were recalled maybe 10 years ago. How long had I had them? Where did I even get them?

So I got a lesson on how to use the new one…and it will work. I Hope I never need it.

+Hot fun in the summertime! BTW…the Safeway @ South Shore, had a gas leak? or a fire? Everybody was evacuated and the AFD was crawling all over the roof. Good thing they didn’t have those Kidde’s.

+Oh, and if you went to the Jamestown (who owns South Shore Center) presentation Tues between 5-7pm, or Wed between 7-9am, let me know what you thought of it.

This is where they were supposed to make a good impression of their projected changes. It was held in a clear tent-like thing, close to McDonalds. There were no seats. (I thought it was a presentation.) There was nobody from Jamestown presenting their ideas to the whole group.  They had some light snacks, and some wine (I don’t drink alcohol). And their flyers looked like blown-up website photos. And BTW….this project is supposed to include 1215 multi-family housing units. How are they supposed to get these folks off and on this island, and on landfill? One representative told my friend, that liquefaction wasn’t a problem.

Just some random thoughts…

Alameda Real Estate this Week

Broker Tour Tues 8

New this week 24

Total Pending 67

Sold this week 11

That’s a wrap! 

best, marilyn

THE SECOND STORY | July 5th, 2019

Parade watching…

My friend, Kevin, said I missed two bridges in Alameda….over the lagoon on Grand Street and over the lagoon on Broadway! He wins! I cross them all the time!

The afternoon of July 3rd, Grand Street residents had put out chairs for our parade (and party) attendees, that lined the streets! And the party I went to on Park Street, did the same thing! They were chained to whatever! I wonder if we will see some action from our local city officials about that. Probably not…one of them lives on Grand Street.

Good news for me….while I verbally said I’d volunteer to work with the ‘barricade brigade,’ for July 4th, on July 2nd I heard what I had volunteered for: to meet at the Oak Street Police Dept at 6:45am (OMG) for a viewing of a video, and we’d be assigned a place to be until 2pm. Yikes! But I wasn’t signed up…it was verbal! YAY!

Alameda Real Estate this Week

Tuesday tour 8

Active 42 (including 1 PCH and 1 AC)

Pending 21

Sold 20 

That’s a wrap! Enjoy the rest of your weekend! Let me know if you have ??? about the market…it’s weird out there!

Best, marilyn

THE SECOND STORY | June 27th, 2019

Happy 4th of July….

…and if you’re in town maybe I’ll see you at the parade. I’ve volunteered (thanks to the Bay East Association of Realtors) to move barriers around, in a specific location, so the parade participants and observers can get in and out.  And no, I’ve never participated in this way!

First time I’ve seen a bull being ridden in the parade!

OK…answers to last week’s questions!

How many bridges does Alameda have?

6, by my count: High St, Fruitvale, Park St, Bay Farm Island bike bridge, Bay Farm Island car bridge, and Ballena Bay.

What’s the speed limit? Seems like it’s 40 mph…but it’s 25 mpg…but few people follow the law. I could tell the cops where they could sit and watch their speed machines…and make a lot of $$$.

Alameda Real Estate this Week

Broker Tour Tues 14

Total active 51 (including 1 AC – active, contingent – one party has a property to sell), 5 PCH – price change – either up or down)

Total pending 67

Total sold 12

Happy Independence Day!

best, marilyn

THE SECOND STORY | June 20th, 2019

How many bridges does A-town have….and

….what’s the legal speed limit?

Let’s see if our answers match!

Nobody pays attention…but I know where cops could issue lots of tickets! But I guess they’re busy with other items. Do you know of a place where our police officers could rake in a bunch of money re: tickets?

What drives me crazy, is how:

-some bike riders may have a helmet, but it’s not on their head.

-some bike riders don’t have any lights on, when it’s dark.

-some bike riders have no reflectors, or strips of reflector material, so they can be seen.

-some bike riders jump between the sidewalks and the streets.

and on and on and on….

If you have an idea of how many bridges we have…let me know and we can compare them!

Alameda Real Estate this Week

Broker Tour 16

Active listings (including 1 AC, 4 PCH) 46

Total pending 59

Sold 15

That’s a wrap! Short, sweet!

Have a fun weekend! best, marilyn