Thursday, August 30, 2012

Property photo shoots -- what really happens

Love looking at "house porn" pictures and wonder what really happens during a photo shoot? Here's Marco Franchina, photographer extraordinaire, showing just how glamorous it all really is. Work it, Marco!

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Real estate blogging panel -- with me

As part of it's ongoing agent training, John Aaroe Group recently conducted a blogging panel with me and two other JAG agents.  It's why I do what I do for you, peeps! For some reason I can't embed the video, so here's the link: 
I come in at about minute 16.  You can also view this on Facebook/judygraffrealtor.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

This bear is walking up the driveway to my Pasadena listing. Fortunately for us all, the house sold 3 months ago.

A neighbor snapped this recent shot of this guy (or gal, sorry) going up the driveway at 1585 Knollwood Terrace, in Pasadena.  Could it be Glen Bearian, the Glendale bear?? I had hoped the house would sell to a celebrity! (Actually, it sold to a very nice human for cash.)  And this bear certainly has wonderful taste in homes (pic of house is above) and locations (Linda Vista area).  But, I have to wonder: is this bear a lookie-loo or serious buyer?

Monday, August 20, 2012

Cash offers are the kings of L.A. real estate. Alas, offers with loans are only princes.

Again, cash trumps loans in my world.  A client made an excellent purchase offer with 20% down on a home, only to see the house go to somebody else who is paying cash.  Apparently, that was the only difference between the two offers.  Sigh.  Take heart, buyers -- this will end someday.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Love L.A. architectural history? This video is for you.

As you may have seen below, last week I had the privilege of attending a lecture by Eleanor Scharpa on L.A. residential architectural history.  This is the YouTube video of that lecture and I hope you enjoy it.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Deer at DeBell Golf Course in Burbank

Here are two deer with two fawns that I filmed last night at DeBell Golf Course in Burbank.  I promise you that I WILL get better at this video thingy.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Architectural styles lecture by Eleanor Schrader Schapa

Yesterday, it was my privilege to attend an Eleanor Schrader Schapa lecture on Los Angeles architectural history at the Pacific Design Center in Weho.  I took the picture above inside PDC -- is this a disco egg?  I want one for my house.  At any rate, Ms. Schapa is an architecture and design consultant and a lecturer at UCLA.  She also has a web-based radio show with her partner Ann Ascher entitled "Dishing the Dirt on Design." It can be found at has several other architectural episodes as well.

Monday, August 13, 2012

Bravo TV's Interior Therapy with Jeff Lewis

I just got a call from the casting director of Bravo TV's Interior Therapy with Jeff Lewis.  That's Jeff, above.  The show sounds great -- they actually rehab/reconstruct space in your home to make it more user-friendly.  Considering the basic housing stock here and what generations of home owners have done to that stock, home rehab is something that just about every home owner in the San Fernando Valley needs, no?

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Home buyers Ryan and Misty discuss their experiences

My home buyer clients, Ryan and Misty, have been looking for a home in Burbank for some time now. They discuss their experiences here.  Excuse the poor sound quality.

Friday, August 10, 2012

No offer acceptances, but as Scarlett says...

This will not come as a surprise, but my buyers' two purchase offers on property in Valley Glen and Burbank were not accepted this week.  In one case, the amount offered was equal to another buyer, but that buyer had a bigger downpayment.  Bigger downpayments equal less risk for the seller.  And that buyer indicated his willingness to bring more money to the transaction if the appraisal came in low.  That's risky.

The second purchase offer was for a gorgeous flipped house in Burbank.  Alas, we were outbid on this one.

But my buyers and I feel lucky that there has been so many nice homes out there to bid on.  And these buyers are wonderfully resilient.

Coming this weekend: my resilient buyers may look at another home in Valley Village.  Another group of buyers will be viewing a property in Burbank if the agent ever calls me back to confirm the appointment.  And my income property buyer and I will be looking for duplexes in Hollywood and Silverlake.  As Scarlett O'Hara said in Gone With The Wind, "Tomorrow is another day."

Tuesday, August 07, 2012

#purchaseofferfail or who do I have to ____ to get an offer accepted around here?

Ugh.  Of the two purchase offers written this weekend, the one for the house in Valley Glen is a definite no-go.  Although we came in over the list price and no other offer was higher than ours or better on terms, the sellers chose one with a higher downpayment that was also willing to pony up more money if the property didn't appraise for the price.  The sellers loved my buyers, but bla bla bla.  I totally understand, but this is so disappointing, especially when we'd really stretched to get this.  So what trick can I come up with next time to make sure my buyers get their desired properties? Is it too late for topless real estate?

Decorating trends from the past

Everything comes back around, right? I have great news for all of you nostalgists out there -- you can find three different trends from the past all in one house on the Burbank/Toluca Lake border!  It's pictured above and also has lots of square footage and a pretty decent price.  It's a foreclosure.  Usually, the foreclosing bank sends somebody in to spiff up their REOs, but I'm sure they didn't in this case because they know somebody with cutting-edge design sensibilities and a love of mid-80's style will snap this baby up.

Remember glass block as a decorating element? Kinda high-tech, but perhaps not quite as useful as other materials? Well, perhaps this look will come back around soon, because this house has plenty of it.  The bathroom above is just one room, there's glass block in several others, too.

And remember colored commodes and other fixtures? Both whimsical and matchy-matchy? This home has both a pink bathroom and a blue bathroom.  I guess that's one for the boys and one for the girls.

Each room in the house is painted a different color, and the kitchen tiles are white and red.  There are rooms off of rooms and closets off of closets.  It's almost like the house has attention deficit disorder. Million-Dollar Listing it's not.  It will take vision, but I'm sure one of you mid-80's enthusiasts will love it, yes?

Monday, August 06, 2012

I wrote two offers this weekend -- for the same buyers...

...on two different houses.  Yes, stuff is going so fast that this is the only way to keep up, it seems -- write an offer on the house you want and also the house you'll take if the one you want is goes to somebody else.  No, I've never done this before.  I'll advise how it goes.

Thursday, August 02, 2012

Renting v. buying: the stats are in favor of buying

I know this is an old argument, but it turns out that for renters, buying a home pays off after three years on average.  The link is to today's L.A. Times article.  Of course, the higher-priced the area is, the longer the payoff time is.  For example, it pays off in Banning after a little over a year, and doesn't pay off in Newport Beach for 14+ years. Interesting data point, no?  Given what I know about local real estate, I would imagine that a Hollywood Hills home would pay off at about 10 to 12 years,Valley Village real estate would pay off after about six to eight years, and a Burbank home would pay off in about four to five years.  That's my guess, anyway.