THE SECOND STORY | September 23rd, 2010

What a place to live!

Blog photo: Golden Gate Bridge at it’s classic best two weeks ago when taking dear friends to lunch at St. Francis Yacht Club. Great views….fabulous food – French Onion Soup to die for!

Blog post: I’ve got a request! If you come across an article about Alameda (some type of ‘best of….), share it with me especially if you can do so in the form of a link. I think I can figure out how to make a page of “Alameda awesome-ness!” as part of the blog…or not. Recently, Alameda was named as 1 of 10 Coolest Suburbs Worth a Visit by Travel + Leisure.

And I was told that we got a big shout out for being kid and family friendly in some article about such things. I think I saw that link on FaceBook but can’t find it on FB or via a Google search. Any help?

And was today weather-perfect or what! The only bummer is the shorter days.

Alameda real estate this week….
Took some clients on our first trip out….what I call the Discovery Tour. A few weeks ago, they were meeting with their selected lender and she asked if they had an agent. They said they had been following my blog and liked the content, but they weren’t sure if I would work with them! The lender, who is excellent, called me right away and told them to call me right away. Well, I put a ‘come hither and come forth’ note at the end of a post a few weeks ago and they did!

After our ‘meet-and-get-to-know-each-other’ session, we agreed to move forward once they returned from a trip. We set a time and I asked if they had any specific places they were interested in. And back came a list of something like 20+ properties! WHOA!

So I went through the list, had seen most of the places, and found that while the data seemed to meet their parameters, (and PJ is all about the data), some of it didn’t make sense to me. So I printed out the details, scanned and emailed the package to them and said they had to do a drive by of the places! Even if it was the ‘best’ opportunity out there, if they didn’t see these in context of location in Alameda, location in a neighborhood, location on a block, then hours would be spent looking in frustration.

They were very generous in saying I could toss out anything I didn’t think they’d like but the point of the Discovery Tour is that it’s more about me (no surprise) than about them! I’m watching them act and react to properties (location, condition, floor plans, location, work required, location, price, time on the market, etc). I let them know if we find one that fits the bill terrific, but this is me getting to know them, their quirks, their go-buttons, and their turn-offs! It really is kind of like dating, now that I think about it.

After they toured the big list, we then toured the small list of 5. And even though 4 of them were pretty wonky or challenging, on the drive back I was able to share my observations with them. And I think we’ll be on track!

What’s the point? These days most of my clients seem to be permanently hooked into real estate websites and often tell me about new listings quicker than I get online. I think it’s because so much shopping is done online while at work these days. So they beat me to the punch.

But it’s the ability to do some screening for the client….to put things into context. One client told me this week how much she and her husband appreciated me telling them up front they didn’t want a particular property they had inquired about, which turned out to be true.

Another couple reminded me this week of something I had insisted they do several years ago when they were looking to downsize and knew they had found the perfect place! They said I told them ‘Great! Take a sandwich and have lunch outside, near the house, and just sit and enjoy it for a couple of hours!’ Well, that was the end of that potential purchase! The eye and ear opener for them was the volume of airplane activity and noise that they hadn’t considered when they were all wrapped up with that perfect house! And they expressed such gratitude for that graphic lesson!

The biggest present a good Realtor can bring to the party is a package of knowledge and experience. Add to those, a willingness to stay with the times, stay in the game, get with the technology, observe trends, and stick to solid basics, and a match may be made in heaven!

Quick Glimpses:
Figuring on refinancing? Here are some figuring considerations. EXCELLENT!
Cramming that loan down the lender’s throat – here comes the judge!

Active listings this week 211, 211 last report
Pending listings this week 69, 76 last report

Highest and Lowest Priced NEW Listings this week

Broker Tour 12 with 2 repeats

New 11

BOM (Back on Market) 1

Price Changes 14

Pending 11

Sold 14 check out the prices either side of list on some of these

Expired 3

Withdrawn/canceled 4 (some show up as new)

Alameda real estate awards this week…remember this is only my perspective!

Winner, Bang for the Buck – I really loved this house at BayPort! This floor plan is really nice, it’s immaculate, it’s tucked back a long way from Appezatto Pkwy (aka Atlantic), it’s close to the gorgeous grammar school, and the best part of BayPort besides the variety of plan elevations- the garages are accessed via alleys that run behind the properties so you can’t see them from the front! YAY! (note, this is the correct house…I had put a short sale listing as the link by mistake….too late at night – Thanks Jeffrey!)

Get Me to Rehab

Cute, Charming

new award! Unique

new award! One to watch… if this fetches anything near this price I will be one happy Alameda multi-unit owner.

Wrap it up! Carry it away! Keep it working! Have a great weekend!

best, marilyn

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I arrived in Alameda in 1973, as a new bride...with husband Carl Schumacher, both of us from Newport Beach. He was embarking on his career as a Naval Architect (i.e. yacht designer) under Gary Mull. Please see the 'ABOUT ME' page in this website! to see how it has all turned out! I'm so blessed!