Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Great Yelp review!

My seller client of 12412 Rye Street in Studio City just posted this review of me. Thanks, Mark!

"You could not ask for more...

Judy Graff could not have been more professional or pleasurable to work with to sell my mother's house.  My family interviewed numerous local agents before deciding upon Judy -- we could not have been more pleased with our decision.  Judy was dedicated to selling my mom's house well before she was ever formally engaged.  Her pre-engagement efforts went well beyond trying to gain our business; they were truly in the best interest of selling my mom's house.

Judy's selling and representation abilities could not likely be surpassed.  Her screening of potential buyers and advice on offers were invaluable.  Certain unfortunate timing issues of the sale, nothing to do with Judy (in fact, timing issues that resulted from not listening to Judy), did not lead to an ideal sale.  Nonetheless, Judy's strategy, advice and hard work in connection with numerous offers led to the best price from the best possible buyer that the market would bear.  Judy's communication and responsiveness throughout the process was impeccable.

In addition to all of the things you would want in a real estate agent, Judy went above and beyond what one would ever expect or desire in any service provider.  One of the things that made the sale of my mom's house unique is that the house sale was necessary due to the fact my mom has Alzheimer's and needed to move cross country.  Judy's compassion and insight on the issues surrounding the sale were sincere and insightful.

Most significantly, when Judy thought she had led us astray in one respect (by unwittingly referring an estate sale agent who turned out to be a crook), she was honorable and diligent in rectifying the issue in every way possible.  

If anyone would care to follow up with me to get more detail on Judy, do not hesitate to reach out to me directly.  I am more than happy to support my unequivocal referral and recommendation of her."

Monday, September 19, 2016

Amazing house and deal in Valley Glen for $639,000

13506 Hartland Street in Valley Glen is now on the market!  This 4 bedroom, 2 bath, 1832 sf. home will capture your heart. Remodeled from top to bottom just five years ago, it features a huge, open kitchen with lots of cabinet space and a center island, open floorplan, beautiful hardwood floors, French doors to exterior in two rooms, redone fireplace and a huge, green backyard (the lot is 9258 sf). The master bedroom has door to backyard, too!  It also has a direct access garage, plenty of closets and a lovely covered patio with its own fireplace. This neighborhood is becoming hugely desirable – this is a great opportunity to get in now.  Please call for more details or visit the website at 13506Hartland.com.  

Friday, September 09, 2016

Coming soon in Valley Glen

13506 Hartland in Valley Glen is going to be on the market in mid-late-September.  This is an amazing house and will be an amazing deal at $639,000 -- it has 4 beds, 2 baths, was completely redone in 2011 and has a huge backyard.  Contact me after the 18th for more pics and information.

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

There is something special about a house that has been lived in and loved for decades. That doesn't mean that it's easy to sell.

12412 Rye Street in Studio City closed escrow a couple of weeks ago.  The owner is a senior citizen who left the state to move closer to family.  The home is beautifully maintained and gorgeously landscaped.  Unfortunately, it had a floor plan that just isn't popular anymore -- 2 beds, 1 bath, and a huge den tacked on to the back of the house.  And, a large apartment building loomed over the back yard.

Nevertheless, I was excited to sell such a little gem. I competed for the listing and for a few months, the listing was "open" -- other agents (six others, I think) could bring buyers and market the home too.  But eventually, I obtained an exclusive listing at $890,000, which is low for the neighborhood. I thought qualified buyers would be storming the place.

It didn't happen that way.  Although contractor-buyers had swarmed the neighborhood in the early part of the year, most were busy with new builds or just plain not interested by June.  Individual buyers could only see all the work they'd have to do to contemporize the layout.  And we started to get crazy lowball offers, like $700k (buyers, if you are contemplating making lowball offers on any of my properties, know this: if the seller would take a price that low, I'd buy the property myself.)

The seller lowered the price to $849,000 in July and we finally began to get some realistic buyer activity.  We actually had multiple offers just before we accepted one for $840,000.  The buyer is an architect/contractor and closed with a collateralized hard money (as good as cash) in 10 days.  Whew! We then had a bad time with the estate sale person (another story for another time) but the home was finally emptied and closed escrow.  I hope the new buyers do something beautiful to the place that makes their new buyers really happy.

Thursday, August 25, 2016

Second chance on 14784 Round Valley, Sherman Oaks

If you missed it the first time around, now is your chance to own this amazing hillside home in Sherman Oaks.  Yes, 14784 Round Valley is now back on the market at $1,189,000.  See more pictures at 14784RoundValley.com.  (Don't miss the glamourous back area.) We will be holding it open Friday, the 26th, from 11 to 2 and again on Sunday, the 28th, from 2 to 5.

Sunday, August 21, 2016

From the New York Times: When the dog decides where you live

Here's some Sunday reading from the New York Times -- When the dog decides where you live (title should link)(pic courtesy of NYT too). The article was written from a New York perspective but is certainly not news for us and our house hunters here in L.A.

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Brand new listing in Sherman Oaks

14784 Round Valley Dr. in Sherman Oaks is coming on the market Wednesday, July 27, for $1,189,000. See more pics at 14784RoundValley.com. This 1999 sf. contemporary is heaven in the hills. Superbly maintained, this private and peaceful 3-level home has a tree house-like indoor/outdoor feel.

This 2+loft+3 features a professionally-landscaped entertainers’ outdoor area with lap pool, spa, fountains, and adorable pool house. Inside, the 2nd floor living space is both huge and cozy and features the dining room, fp, powder room and access to the wonderful wrap-around deck.

Remodeled kitchen and baths include caesar stone counter tops, stainless steel appliances, and custom vanities. The big, bright master has a fireplace, en-suite bath with jetted tub and walk-in closet.  Another full bath is adjacent to the sunny 2nd bedroom.  The loft with its large closet can be repurposed as an office, den or 3rd bedroom.  You'll love gazing out the wall of windows at the hills, terraced garden, tree tops, or twinkling city lights.

Please contact me for more details.  It will be open for brokers this Friday, and open to the public on Saturday and Sunday.

Sunday, July 17, 2016

12412 Rye Street in Studio City is now offered at $849,000!

This classic Studio City home could be your next masterpiece, and has just had a substantial price reduction.  This well-maintained traditional home features 2 bedrooms, 1 bath, a big den, dining room, fireplace, big kitchen and more. It offers 1481 sf on a 7600+ square foot lot, which means there is plenty of room to add on.  And as you'll see from the pics, the landscaping is gorgeous, too.  Call me for more info.

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

1112 Cordova in Burbank sold off-market yesterday

This is my listing at 1112 N. Cordova in Burbank and it closed escrow yesterday.  It wasn't on the market; I advertised it privately to a few Realtors with the right type of clients -- ones that wanted to do some work to a house.  We got a dream offer -- $700,000 in cash, no inspections, no contingencies, and a free 29-day rent-back for the sellers.  There were some hitches in the escrow, of course, but everything worked out at the end.  Whew!

Thursday, July 07, 2016

12412 Rye Street, Studio City is open Sunday, July 10, 2-4

12412 Rye Street in Studio City is a classic beauty is just waiting for buyers with fabulous taste.  Her features include: traditional floor plan, separate dining room, huge den that leads to backyard, patio with pergola, gorgeous green landscaping, hardwoods and 1481 sf.  The home has been carefully maintained throughout the years and has a newer roof, tankless water heater and some new windows.  Listed at $890,000, the home is ripe for an add-on, a re-do, or just to live in and love as is.  Studio City is one of the hottest neighborhoods in L.A. For more pictures, please visit 12412Rye.com.  Come visit us this weekend at the open house.

Wednesday, July 06, 2016

Hot new house for rent in Studio City

Want to rent a 3+2 home in a private garden setting? One that's been recently renovated with new hardwood floors, a redone kitchen with new appliances (including refrigerator), two redone bathrooms, new paint and more? That allows pets with some restrictions? And is walking distance to lots of Studio City attractions? And is behind a large brick gate for privacy? Look no farther than 10920 Fruitland in Studio City. The house also has a fireplace, central air, lots of built-ins for storage plus attic storage, and a detached garage.  There's also dedicated street parking and a washer and dryer in an outdoor structure. The landlords will even allow some gardening for those with a green thumb -- although everything is manicured, lush and green already.  The house rents for $4500/month.  Please call me to show or for more details.

Friday, July 01, 2016

And the Burbank townhouse goes to...Daniel and Linda!

Clients Daniel and Linda just closed their purchase of a Sarah Street townhouse in Burbank.  These units, and the adjacent units on Kling, have been wildly popular since long before I got into real estate.  They are on the Toluca Lake-side of Burbank. Most of the units are about 1500 square feet and they have attached two-car garages.  HOA dues are low, and there are a couple of pools in the complex.

Some of these units are real showplaces.  Not Daniel and Linda's though -- it needed a lot of work.  But the two buyers are really creative, and really brave, so I'm sure they'll make it into something beautiful.  Yes, we faced a bidding war.  But D&L wrote a wonderful letter to the seller about themselves and what they planned to do to the unit.  That seemed to do the trick.  Plus, both buyers and the seller are in the entertainment industry and as we all know, like attracts like.

There were a couple of other challenges as well.  The buyers were getting their loan through Partners (Disney's) credit union.  Sometimes credit unions can take forever to close a loan, but not this one.  We closed right on time.  Plus, the popcorn ceiling has asbestos in it -- yikes! The first thing the buyers will be redoing is the ceiling. Congratulations again, Daniel and Linda, and I can't wait to see how you improve the place.

Monday, June 20, 2016

Classic home for sale in Studio City - 12412 Rye Street

Looking for a classicly proportioned home in a great Studio City neighborhood? One that is just waiting for your design stamp and decorating? If so, 12412 Rye Street may be for you.  Listed for $890,000, this beauty features 2 bedrooms, 1 bath, a huge den, 1472 sf, big added-on den, large backyard and luxurious landscaping in a pretty above-Moorpark neighborhood.  She's been splendidly maintained over the years and has a newer roof, tankless water heater, and mostly new windows. Update, remodel, or add square footage and this home will be seriously stunning. Come visit me at the open house on Sunday, June 26, from 2 to 4. More pics at 12412Rye.com.

Friday, June 10, 2016

Huge townhouse in stellar Studio City location - $530,000

I am pleased to announce that my listing at 4332 Coldwater Canyon #1 in Studio City will be on the market on Monday, June 13. If you've been looking for a perfect place, this may be it – 1452 sf, two bedrooms, three baths, dining room, spacious kitchen, high ceilings, two fireplaces and a big, private rooftop deck with a tree top/hillside view! Other amenities include lots of closet space, an electric car charger, built-in book shelves, two balconies and two parking spaces. The unit’s corner location in this small building (only 4 units) guarantees a bright, sunny exposure. Low HOA of only $200/month. It's walking distance to Ventura Boulevard with all of its shops and restaurants, and close to golf and tennis clubs, too. Add your own creative stamp to this -- it's a decorator's dream at an unbelievable price.  Appliances included; Dixie Canyon Elementary. Call me for more info or to visit. Currently scheduled open houses: Friday, June 17, 11:00-2:00; and Sunday, June 19, 2:00 to 5:00.

Wednesday, June 08, 2016

My clients just bought a home in Sherman Oaks and I learned more about septic tanks than I thought there was to know.

Congratulations to Joe and Amy on their recent purchase of a wonderful mid-century home in Sherman Oaks!  Over the months, we saw every home in Sherman Oaks and Studio City, but nothing clicked.  Then, we arrived at this Sherman Oaks home and it was love at first sight.  It was recently bought and flipped by a celebrity flipper couple; click here for L.A. Times article.  Yes, we had competition, but Joe and Amy really brought a lot of creativity to the offer process and ultimately prevailed.

Did you know that portions of Sherman Oaks' hillside properties are on septic tanks and not city sewers? Neither did I until this sale -- septic tanks are not common in L.A.  So as part of the buyers' due diligence, they had the entire septic system inspected.  And we read reports previously obtained by the sellers. And learned lots and lots about tanks, pits, depth of pits, how often the clean-out needs to happen, care and handling, drainage, etc.  We combed over the findings (the inspection videos are on Youtube, if you are brave enough want to see them).  This is definitely NOT the sexy part of real estate.  At the end of the day, all was well and we all are much better educated than when Amy and Joe began their journey.  The house and view are truly lovely and I'm sure Joe, Amy and their dogs will be very happy there for many years to come.

Saturday, June 04, 2016

I am quoted about Studio City in today's L.A. Times Hot Property section

Bellwether restaurant

Today's L.A. Times' Hot Property section has an extensive profile of Studio City.  Click here for the link.  And I am quoted in the Expert Insight portion:

“The great thing about Studio City: It’s not all high-end,” said Judy Graff, a real estate broker who lives in Studio City and specializes in the neighborhood.
The same is true when it comes to real estate.

“There's quite a variety of housing stock here, from town houses and condos, which are quite affordable, to of course estates up in the hills in Fryman Canyon,” she said. Because of that, “prepare yourself for a bidding war.”

Friday, May 27, 2016

3% down payment mortgages are back. Does this sound familiar?

Wells Fargo is now offering first-time buyers mortgage loans with only a 3% down payment.  Click here for today's L.A. Times story.  That's even cheaper than FHA which has 3.5% down payment loans.  Funny thing, tho -- once these loans are originated, they will be sold to Fannie Mae, the government-insured entity.  Other banks are developing similar loans.

The loans are for first-time and low income buyers, and will have other restrictions as well that will need to meet Fannie Mae underwriting standards.

Does any of this sound familiar? From, like, 2006 and 2007?

Monday, May 16, 2016

Coming attractions - real estate, not films

Here are a few listings that are coming up in the next few weeks.  Yes, you can see them now -- just call me.  First, in Burbank's Magnolia Park, 1112 N. Cordova will soon be listed.  We all know this is the hottest neighborhood in Burbank.  Not only are the public schools here particularly excellent, but this area is walking distance from Porto's.  No pics yet, but Cordova is a 2 bed + den, 2.5 bath home with lots of extra bonus square footage next to the garage.  This is classic post-war Burbank with built-in book shelves, a separate dining room, and a huge galley kitchen.  The master bedroom is sizeable, too, as is the backyard.  It needs some elbow grease to make it really shine -- or it can easily be remodeled to today's standards.  It will be on the market in a couple of weeks for $719,000.

Next up is 12412 Rye in Studio City.  This home is a 2+1+big den on a big lot.  The landscaping is super-attractive.  The house has been well-maintained and is perfect for creative people who like to do their own expanding/remodeling.  It will be on the market in mid-June for $890,000.  Here are some pics.

A great Studio City townhouse is also coming in June.  This Coldwater Canyon 2+2.5 is in a 4-unit building with low, low HOAs and is walking distance to everything in the area.  It also features a huge rooftop deck with view -- perfect for summer evening chilling.  Two fireplaces, two balconies, an electric car charger and much more complete the picture.  We're still spiffing up, but currently plan to list it at $530,000.

Interested in these? Please call for a chance to see any of these before they hit the market.

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

The Jacaranda trees are in bloom again -- it must be spring in So. Cal.

Check it out -- Jacarandas are blooming here in the Los Angeles area, which means it must be Spring (as we know it). I think this is my favorite local foliage.  Blooming soon: agapanthus (favorite deer food), wild garlic, hydrangeas... . These really dress up a yard, so if you're planning on selling your home here in the SFV this summer, you may want to plant some of these.

Thursday, April 21, 2016

Twighlight open house in Studio City tonight from 5 to 7

Come see the terrific view and watch the sunset at 11411 Decente Ct., Studio City.  This is open to both real estate brokers and buyer clients.  This terrific house features 4057 sf., private location, 3 big balconies with panoramic views, 5 bedrooms, den, 6 baths, and superb maintenance.  Price tag is $1,999,900.

Thursday, April 14, 2016

Open Sunday! 11411 Decente Ct., Studio City

Need views? We got 'em.  How about 4057 sq. ft., 5 bedrooms, 6 bathrooms and a den? All in the Studio City hills? Please come to our open house at 11411 Decente Court on Sunday from 2 to 5. This house is truly amazing with views across the SFV from all three levels.  It has been splendidly maintained and is in Carpenter Charter school district, too (buyers to verify). Price: $1,999,900.  For more stellar pics, see www.11411Decente.com.

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Brian and Lisa buy a Burbank home

Clients Brian and Lisa have just closed escrow on this redone Burbank home, adjacent to the Chandler bike path.  The transaction was amazingly smooth.  I originally began working with Lisa in 2008! Just shows that the right house is out there if you're willing to be patient.  

Tuesday, April 05, 2016

Eleven offers for this Sherman Oaks condo

I listed 14115 Moorpark #202, Sherman Oaks in late March.  By the beginning of the following week, we had eleven offers.  All of them were good.  All were at least a little over the asking price.  We counter-offered on six, and opened escrow with the buyer who had the "winning" bid last week. Yes, it went substantially over the list price.  I have never had this many offers for a condo before -- but then, this is a mighty cute property and is in a great, walkable Sherman Oaks neighborhood.

Monday, March 28, 2016

R.E. market has low inventory and fierce competition

The L.A. Times had a substantial feature in today's paper about how many homes aren't for sale, and the resulting strong competition among buyers.  Title should link; if not, click here.  Trends I'm seeing in Sherman Oaks and Studio City: overpriced homes for sale that are not reducing their prices but just waiting for the market to catch up.  Also, some of the higher-priced properties are only having two or three public showings, total. If you miss one, you're out of luck for seeing these select homes.

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

2+2 chic condo in Sherman Oaks' hottest neighborhood is now on the market

Looking for a very cool condo around Hazeltine and Moorpark in Sherman Oaks? This is 14115 Moorpark #202 and it's really lovely.  It has 2 beds, 2 baths, 1250 sf, beautiful laminate floors, huge living room, on-trend kitchen and dining area with re-done cabinets and new appliances, long pass-through bar, fp, and big balcony.  It also faces trees instead of your neighbor's stucco!  There are two tandem parking spaces and extra storage in the garage. And, it's walking distance from The Local Peasant, mega-Ralphs, Westfield Shopping Center, Cafe Bizou, Mendocino Farms, etc. Price is $420,000 and the HOA is $425/mo.  The building is well-managed and even has a pool and spa. HOA includes earthquake insurance and yes, allows 2 pets per unit!  I will be holding it open on Sunday, March 27, from 1 to 4.

Friday, March 11, 2016

Cool things on Studio City's caravan

I checked out a few homes for sale in Studio City today.  Just like you, I enjoy seeing really cool interiors. The home at 4218 Farmdale Ave. in SC was splendidly decorated and here are a few of some of my favorite things about the home.  BTW, this brand-new listing is a 3+2 and listed for $1,325,000.
The succulents in the front yard and back yard are awesome.
This is a big canvas that hangs over the tub.
I fell in love with this dining room light fixture.  Where can I get one of these?

Tuesday, March 08, 2016

The buyers are ready to buy...but where are the sellers??

A colleague recently listed a home for sale in Studio City.  He had two open houses and one more just for Realtors.  A total of 500 people came through the house.  That's right; 500.  That's a huge amount of people for one house.  Yup, there are a lot of buyers out there chasing very little inventory.  If you're thinking of selling your house, this might be the time. And if you're thinking about buying a home, don't wait too much longer -- limited inventory tends to drive prices up.

Tuesday, March 01, 2016

Why you can't find and purchase that cute new house

Today's L.A. Times featured an article titled "Fewer starter homes being built" in the print edition and "Why millenials are staying away from home ownership..." in the on-line edition.  Last sentence and should link.  The gist: "Builders are catering more and more to affluent baby boomers and building larger and more expensive dwellings..." instead of more modestly-sized entry-level homes.  We are certainly seeing this trend in homes in Studio City and the east SFV.  The article has all kinds of interesting statistics and is definitely worth a read.

Will home affordability return here in L.A.? Perhaps not for brand-new homes in hot areas anytime soon.  But if you're a first-time buyer, or even NOT a first-time buyer, there are lots of not-new homes and homes in not-so-popular areas that are certainly worth considering.

Friday, February 12, 2016

Favorite homes from today's Studio City caravan - warmth makes a comeback!

If you've been seeing homes for sale in Studio City and L.A. lately, you've surely seen many brand-new Cape Cod-style homes with lots of neutral finishes, white-on-white decorating, and a general starkness that seems to be the hallmark of the local r.e. market.

Are you ready for something different? I thought so. Both houses on today's fave list are in the traditional style that used to be so popular -- and I hope will be again.

The first, above, is 4167 Klump Ave. in the Woodbridge Park area of Studio City.  This great neighborhood features lots of mature foliage and one-of-a kind homes.  It is completely walkable to stores, restaurants and Tujunga Village.  The house itself has lots of warm traditional touches in its delightful public living spaces, but also has an open floor plan. It also has a green yard and guest house with full bath (total 4 beds, 4 baths, about 3k sf including the bonus sf).  It's listed at $1,249,000 and I bet it will be sold this weekend.

The next is 11212 Canton Drive, just east of Laurel Canyon Blvd.  Listed for $1,799,000, this house has 4 beds, 4 baths, about 3300 sf on a gorgeous, private, terraced lot.  The country-French interior charmed my pants off along with big sunny rooms and all the outside greenery.  It's on a quiet cul-de-sac and is really close to lots of hiking trails.  It's so refreshing to see lush, comfy decorating again.