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Cristal's Blog

Sep 182019

Santa Barbara Wine Country in 805 Living Magazine: The Food & Wine Issue

FEATURING THE WINERIES AND TASTING ROOMS OF BUELTON When Santa Barbara Wine Country is mentioned, chances are the Santa Ynez Valley communities of Ballard, Los Olivos, Solvang, and Santa Ynez come to mind. But, how about Buellton? Known until rec...

Sep 172019

Social Media Influence on Interior Design in Santa Barbara and Montecito

10 INSPIRATIONAL DESIGNERS ON INSTAGRAM Today’s consumers have become increasingly digital-savvy and social media-driven. I have blogged about Insta-worthy locations in Santa Barbara in the past. Now, it’s time to take a look at the ways s...

Sep 122019

Insta-worthy Locations: The Most Instagram-able Spots in Santa Barbara

7 EPIC PLACES TO SNAP AND SHARE There are so many “Insta-worthy” locations in Montecito and Santa Barbara that professional and amateur photographers might find it difficult to decide where to start. Let’s face it—this area offers visu...

Sep 102019

Refresh Your Montecito Home This Fall

4 WAYS TO BRING YOUR HOME TO LIFE The sunny weather here in Montecito may not feel like it yet but it is that time of year to refresh your Montecito home and prepare for the fall. Why not make the inside of your home reflect the vibrant outside wher...

Sep 62019

Santa Barbara’s Arlington Theater

THE TRAGIC HISTORY OF THIS ARCHITECTURAL WONDER Santa Barbara’s Arlington Theater has a rich history dating back to the 1870s. While the Theater as we know it today opened on May 22, 1931, the red-tiled building stands as a perfect example o...

Sep 42019

September is California Wine Month

DISCOVER CALIFORNIA WINES RIGHT IN YOUR OWN BACKYARD Every September, we who are fortunate enough to live in Santa Barbara are invited to celebrate California Wine Month in style. September marks the beginning of harvest in the Golden State, making ...

Aug 282019

Hug a Santa Barbara Tree Today

THERE ARE SO MANY REASONS TO LOVE THEM Each Santa Barbara tree is an invaluable resource. Together, the city’s trees provide more than $2 million in annual benefits: from stormwater and carbon dioxide reduction to reduced energy costs. That...

Aug 272019

Passive Income: 10 Ideas for Building Wealth While Sitting on the Beach

MAKING MONEY WHILE ENJOYING SAND, SUN AND SURF IN SANTA BARBARA Are you interested in creating passive income while sitting on the beach in sunny Santa Barbara? There are several ways to make your money work for you. In order to get there, you have ...

Aug 222019

Santa Barbara Events: Look Forward to a Busy September!

SUMMER IS ENDING, BUT THE FUN CONTINUES ON THE AMERICAN RIVERIA September is nearly upon us and, like any September on the American Riviera, there are tons of Santa Barbara events to plan for. Although summer may be coming to a close, don’t put yo...

Aug 202019

Luxury Home Products for Montecito Homeowners

7 NEW PRODUCTS YOU CAN’T LIVE WITHOUT As technology advances, so do luxury home products. While product launches are nothing new, many of the latest products and gadgets to hit the market today are designed specifically to make everyday chores mor...

Aug 142019

9 Hidden Costs of Buying a Home

THESE ARE THE BIG ONES TO CONSIDER Are you aware of the hidden costs related to buying a house? For the unsuspecting homebuyer -- moving to a new home like the Singular Ocean View Montecito Home pictured on this blog -- these hidden costs can be tru...

Aug 132019

What Makes Montecito Spanish Colonial Revival Architecture Such a Sought-After Design?

9 ARCHITECTURAL ELEMENTS OF THE EXCEPTIONAL DESIGN STYLE Searching for a Spanish Colonial Revival estate in Montecito? I don’t blame you. These homes are unique and well-constructed, with lots of character and charm; born as a result of the Panama...

Aug 72019

Vietnam’s Economy Boom Means More Luxury Homebuyers in the U.S.

WEALTHY VIETNAMESE ARE HOUSE HUNTING IN CALIFORNIA Once known as one of the poorest countries in the world, the boom in Vietnam’s economy is changing that reputation. In the fourth quarter of the last fiscal year alone, the country recorded 7.1% e...

Aug 62019

Santa Barbara: Oasis of Arts and Culture

RESIDENTS ENJOY MORE THAN BEAUTIFUL BEACHES AND PERFECT WEATHER You may not consider the arts and culture when you think about Santa Barbara, but the area's location, climate, and topography are definitely good for the creative soul. Local artists a...

Aug 22019

A Great Interior Design Challenge: Creating a Dog-friendly Home

4 TIPS FROM THE EXPERTS A great interior design challenge – one that’s fun and rewarding -- is creating a space that works for the way you, your family and your pets live. That is so true in today’s world, especially for homeowners in do...

Jul 302019

No Kid Hungry: The Manifest Altruism of Actor Jeff Bridges

“THE DUDE” PROVIDES MORE THAN HIS SUPERSTAR STATUS TO SANTA BARBARA Jeff Bridges brings more to the Santa Barbara community than his superstar status. A longtime resident of Montecito, the Academy Award winner is also the national spokesperson ...

Jul 242019

How a Fed Rate Cut Could Be Good News for Luxury Homebuyers in Montecito

IS AN INTEREST RATE CUT COMING? The U.S. Federal Reserve is likely to announce a Fed rate cut by the end of this month. Cutting federal interest rates, also known as the federal funds rate, could move domestic and global real estate markets in big w...

Jul 232019

Will a California Heat Wave Hit Santa Barbara This Summer?

10+ TIPS ON STAYING COOL  While a Central and Southern California heat wave has not materialized this summer – so far, the extreme heat felt by those on the East Coast and in the Midwest and Central Plains was deadly. According to weather forecas...

Jul 172019

Housing Market Predictions: Moving Forward in 2019

FORBES ASKS 6 EXPERTS Forbes Magazine recently asked 6 industry experts to share their housing market predictions for the remainder of 2019. According to the article, despite earlier suggestions that a buyer’s market is on the horizon, sellers ar...

Jul 162019

Summer in Santa Barbara Shines with Old Spanish Days Fiesta 2019

¡VIVA LA FIESTA! Summer in Santa Barbara is especially vibrant and memorable thanks to the annual Old Spanish Days Fiesta. This is the time residents and visitors are invited to immerse themselves in the history, culture, and spirit of Santa ...

Jul 102019

The Depth in Popularity of Home Aquariums

CREATE YOUR OWN NATURE-BASED ART EXPERIENCE Home Aquariums have become a new trend in home interior decorating designed to merge indoor and outdoor spaces inside high-end residences. Since the indoor-outdoor lifestyle was created here in Sant...

Jul 92019

How to Create the Big Little Lies’ Interior Design Styles in Your Montecito Estate

7 WAYS TO ACHIEVE THE CALIFORNIA COOL LOOK The HBO hit show Big Little Lies has become the latest TV real estate obsession for many who appreciate classic and hip interior design styles. That’s because the setting is more than just a show’s back...

Jul 32019

Ellen DeGeneres House in Carpinteria Just Went Under Contract

NEIGHBORS INCLUDE GEORGE LUCAS AND ASHTON KUCHER AND MILA KUNIS You may have just missed your chance to own the Carpinteria compound just listed by Ellen DeGeneres – one of the seemingly dozens of California homes she has purchased and sold over t...

Jul 22019

Santa Barbara Farmers’ Markets Farm Stands And Gourmet Shops

SHOP LOCAL FOR FRESH FRUITS, VEGETABLES AND MORE The Santa Barbara Certified Farmers Market offers some of the freshest produce on the West Coast. You can also find an incredible selection of local goods at these markets. The bounty is due to our...

Jun 262019

How to Decorate Your Mid-century modern Home

MY ROOM BY ROOM GUIDE There are so many stunning Mid-century modern homes here in Santa Barbara. In fact, I sold six beauties in 2018 alone. One of my recent mid-century listings is pictured here, a Notable Architect’s Mid-century modern on E. Mou...

Jun 252019

$19.1 Billion Disaster Relief Bill

THE BILL WILL HELP CALIFORNIA COMMUNITIES AND OTHERS President Trump signed a $19.1 billion disaster relief bill intended to provide assistance to communities grappling with recovery from wildfires, flooding, and hurricanes. That includes those of u...

Jun 192019

Get Ready for Santa Barbara’s Summer Solstice Celebration

REJOICE ON THE LONGEST DAY OF THE YEAR -- THE SANTA BARBARA WAY Shakespeare called it midsummer, but Santa Barbarians know the longest day of the year as the summer solstice and, as usual, the town will be celebrating the event in style. Now in its ...

Jun 182019

Great Outdoors Month: 5 Ways to Celebrate In Santa Barbara

JUNE IS OFFICIALLY THE MONTH TO REVEL IN THE GREAT OUTDOORS The U.S. Forest Service has named June the official month to celebrate the Great Outdoors. With the goal of connecting people to nature through good times, the U.S. Forest Service has put t...

Jun 132019

The Ambiance of a French Country Estate in Montecito

FRENCH DESIGNER DOROTHEE BOISSIER SHARES SOME THOUGHTS In a recent article in Mansion Global, the editors caught up with Paris-based designer Dorothee Boissier, co-owner of acclaimed firm Gilles & Boissier, to find out how to create the ambiance...

Jun 112019

10 Home Security Tips

KEEPING YOUR HOME SAFE WHILE YOU’RE ON VACATION Today, it’s more important than ever that homeowners take an active role in protecting their most valuable asset and belongings – especially while they’re away from home. And luckily, there are...

Jun 62019

Ready for a Channel Islands Cruise?

TAKE A PRIVATE ECO CRUISE ABOARD A LUXURY YACHT Does a three-day private Channel Islands cruise aboard a luxury yacht sound exciting to you? It does to me! An adventure to one of the most exotic destinations in California, the Channel Islands, is j...

Jun 42019

Selling Your Home in a Buyer’s Market

EXPERTS SAY GATHER DATA AND UNDERSTAND SELLERS’ MOTIVATIONS  As a follow-up to my recent blog, Is a Home Buyer’s Market on the Horizon?, I’m going to drill down on the topic and look at how this prediction affects the high-end market, includi...

May 292019

Are “Pocket Listings” Effective When Selling Homes in Montecito?

PRIVATE LISTINGS ARE NOT FOR EVERY SELLER So-called “pocket listings” have been a longtime staple among New York City and other high-end real estate market sellers looking to quietly sell a high-priced luxury residential property. Today, this ki...

May 282019

Butterflies Alive! Another Reason To Live in Santa Barbara

ANNUAL FUN AND BEAUTY AT THE SANTA BARBARA MUSEUM OF NATURAL HISTORY There are so many reasons to live in Santa Barbara. Our beautiful weather, our breathtaking sunsets, our compassionate communities and now our (formerly) semi-annual Butterfl...

May 222019

Ocean View Homes are Good for Our Health

SCIENCE PROVES BLUE SPACE CAN IMPROVE YOUR MENTAL WELLBEING Those of us fortunate enough to live in Montecito ocean view homes or those with an ocean view in Santa Barbara don’t take our amazing vistas for granted. In fact, just look up Santa Ba...

May 212019

Is a Home Buyer’s Market on the Horizon?

PROFESSIONALS ACROSS THE NATION SAY THE TIDES MAY BE SHIFTING After a long winter in the housing market across the country, including right here in Montecito, many real estate professionals are predicting they see a home buyer’s market on the hori...

May 162019

20th Annual Power Lunch with Warren Buffett

DINE WITH THE ORACLE OF OMAHA Want to take a power lunch with Warren Buffett and make a difference in the lives of thousands at the same time? Then get pre-qualified now to place a bid on eBay for YOUR chance to dine with the Oracle of Omaha at Smith...

May 142019

Dreaming of Living in a Luxury Modern Home in Montecito?

CHECK OUT MY ICONIC MODERNISM LISTINGS The idea behind a luxury modern home in Montecito, or anywhere for that matter, is that form should follow function. There was also the concept of ‘Truth to materials’, which held that rather than conceal...

May 92019

Baby Checklist: 10 Things to Do to Prepare Your Home for a Newborn

PREPARATION IS KEY In honor of Prince Harry and Duchess Meghan Markle’s royal bundle of joy, Archie Harrison Mountbatten-Windsor, I thought I’d offer some important ways to prepare for a newborn. A sort of “baby checklist.” If you’re curr...

May 72019

Mother’s Day 2019: Celebrate in Santa Barbara

MOTHER’S DAY 2019 IS THIS SUNDAY, MAY 12th Mother's Day 2019, like those in years past, will be a celebration honoring the mother of the family, the heart of the home, and motherhood in general. Actually, motherhood has been celebrated for ages. T...

May 22019

7 Must-Haves For Your Next Lawn Party

HERE ARE THE THINGS YOU PROBABLY HAVEN’T THOUGHT OF Those of us fortunate enough to live in Montecito love throwing a lawn party, especially this time of year. Who doesn’t welcome the opportunity to enjoy the great outdoors with family and frien...

Apr 302019

Real Estate Terms Used in Listing Descriptions

BUYERS, ALLOW ME TO TRANSLATE You have probably encountered some of the specialized real estate terms used in property descriptions. Look at any listing anywhere in the country and you will realize that they all include certain phrases that buyers m...

Apr 252019

Maintaining a Healthy Home Begins in the Bedrooms and Bathrooms

DON’T FRET. ALL GOOD THINGS MUST COME TO AN END. The recent issue of Health Magazine has some excellent advice for maintaining a healthy home; especially when it comes to bedrooms and bathrooms. According to the publication, there are 6 things in ...

Apr 232019

Celebrate Earth Day in Santa Barbara

THE GLOBAL CLIMATE MOVEMENT IS GROWING Those of us who live here take Earth Day in Santa Barbara seriously. After all, Earth Day was born out of an unnatural disaster right here in our front yard: the Pacific Ocean. On January 28, 1969, the now infa...

Apr 182019

Is Information on Real Estate TV Shows Believable?

4 MISGUIDED “TRUTHS” PROMOTED BY POPULAR PROGRAMMING The HGTV effect in the real estate industry is real, but don’t kid yourself into believing all of what you see and hear on your favorite real estate TV shows is necessarily valid. Think abou...

Apr 172019

Celebrate Easter in Santa Barbara

FROM EASTER BRUNCH TO EASTER EGG HUNTS Looking to celebrate Easter in Santa Barbara? One of the best things about living on the American Rivera is the fact that this area offers a plethora of things to do all year long. Easter is no exception. Wheth...

Apr 152019

Living Room Design Mistakes: 7 to Avoid

DO YOU MAKE ANY OF THESE ERRORS? I just read an illuminating article in MyDomaine regarding the 7 most common living room design mistakes. In case you don’t know, MyDomaine is one of the leading home design and lifestyle sites on the internet. I ge...

Apr 92019

Add Value to Your Home With a Chef-Inspired Kitchen

HOMES WITH UPSCALE KITCHENS SELL FOR MORE Experts agree a chef-inspired kitchen can add value to your home and is a recipe for success when it comes time to sell. According to two of the top online real estate information services, home sellers see...

Apr 52019

Home Design: Technology and Trends for 2019 and Beyond

11 DEVELOPMENTS INFLUENCING ARCHITECTURE Many of the new, cutting-edge architecture trends evolving or already here are capable of complementing the interior and exterior home design in Montecito and Santa Barbara. They can, and often do, impact bot...

Apr 22019

There’s Still Time to See the Wildflower Super Bloom in Santa Barbara County

WHAT IS A SUPER BLOOM ANYWAY? Birds are chirping, creeks are flowing, and the wildflower super bloom in Santa Barbara County is still putting on a spectacular show. Patches of bright orange poppies and white lilies dot the hillsides along mountain r...

Mar 292019

Interest Rates: No More Hikes in 2019?

PRIME TIME TO LIST YOUR HOME IN MONTECITO Last week, the Federal Reserve decided to keep interest rates steady, amending earlier predictions there would be more interest rate hikes in 2019. The news came as a relief to many investors. And it gets...

Mar 262019

Montecito Homebuyers: Should You Pay Cash Or Take Out a Mortgage?

WHAT GIVES YOU THE BIGGEST BANG FOR YOUR BUCK? Montecito homebuyers sometimes ask if they should pay cash or take out a mortgage when investing in real estate. While most of my clients opt for a cash purchase, that might not be the best option for e...

Mar 222019

A New Trend in Santa Barbara Interior Design?

PAINT AND WALLPAPER: TRUE STATUS SYMBOLS FOR YOUR HOME Santa Barbara interior design will surely take notice of a new innovation in wallcoverings. Style-conscious Montecito homeowners are discovering a new luxury paint company that can turn their h...

Mar 192019

Luxury Bunkers: Much More Than Your Basic Survival Shelter

CONSIDER ONE OF THESE LUXURY SHELTERS FOR YOUR HOME As more affluent homeowners – here in Montecito and Santa Barbara as well as elsewhere --  become aware of the comfort and versatility of luxury bunkers, they’re likely to consider one for the...

Mar 142019

Santa Barbara Applauds Women’s History Month

CELEBRATE WITH THE SANTA BARBARA CHAPTER OF THE ASSOCIATION FOR WOMEN IN COMMUNICATIONS March is Women's History Month. Santa Barbara joins the Library of Congress, National Archives and Records Administration, National Endowment for the Humanities,...

Mar 122019

Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day 2019 the Santa Barbara Way

GET YOUR LEPRECHAUN ON WITH THESE 10 IRISH SLANG TERMS TO USE AT THESE 5 IRISH-THEMED ACTIVITIES Head’s up St. Patrick’s Day 2019, Irish-for-a-day revelers who live in Santa Barbara. The time is nigh to make your plans and enjoy some green s...

Mar 82019

Real Estate Disclosure Forms: Foolproof or Fallible?

4 OF THE CRAZIEST THINGS BUYERS FOUND AFTER CLOSING California disclosure laws are an integral part of the journey toward closing on a home. The Golden State, like many others, requires its residential property sellers to disclose certain things i...

Mar 52019

Bye-bye, 2018 Tax Deductions. Hello, Loopholes

5 TAX BREAKS THAT HAVE DISAPPEARED (SORT OF) The major overhaul of the U.S. tax code has left many homeowners confused this tax season.   But the new Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) IS not as frightening as you might think with regard to 2018 ta ded...

Mar 12019

Let’s Step Up to Support the Santa Barbara Wildlife Care Network

GET UP CLOSE AND PERSONAL AT ITS ANNUAL OPEN HOUSE Once a year, the Santa Barbara Wildlife Care Network (SBWCN) invites the public to experience a rare, behind-the-scenes look at its facility located at 1460 N. Fairview Ave in Santa Barbara. This i...

Feb 262019

Technology and Privacy: Are They Mutually Exclusive?

TECHNOLOGY CAN RADICALLY ADVANCE OUR FREEDOMS . . . AND COMPROMISE OUR PRIVACY By now, we all know the benefits of home technology. But, are your smart devices invading your privacy? National and international laws have not yet caught up with priva...

Feb 222019

Tidying Up with Marie Kondo: It’s All About Choosing Joy

 USING THE CLEANING GURU'S KONMARI METHOD™ Are you aware of the Marie Kondo cleaning craze sweeping the Netflix-watching nation? For those who haven’t heard of her yet, Marie Kondo is a Japanese organizing consultant and star of the Netflix hit...

Feb 192019

Sick Building Syndrome: Could Your Home be Making You Ill?

FOLLOW THESE 4 STEPS TO A HEALTHY MONTECITO HOME Office buildings are not the only places that come down with sick building syndrome (SBS). You might mistakenly self-diagnose yourself with a cold or flu when in reality, you could be suffering from S...

Feb 152019

Going Solar? Facts and Figures to Help You Decide

WHEN GOING SOLAR, A LITTLE KNOWLEDGE GOES A LONG WAY Considering going solar in 2019? That’s good for both you and the environment. Experts report that making the switch from fossil fuel could potentially cut air pollution by 90%. But that’s not...

Feb 132019

Private Firefighters: Help For Montecito Homeowners?

ALREADY BE COVERED? CHECK YOUR HOMEOWNERS POLICY. You may have heard that private firefighters saved the $60 million home of Kim Kardashian and Kanye West when the California Woolsey Fire ravaged Ventura County. How did they do that? Private firefi...

Feb 82019

Celebrate Valentine’s Day in Santa Barbara

VALENTINE'S DAY MENU'S OF AMERICAN RIVIERA RESTAURANTS Romance is in the air all year long in Santa Barbara so it’s not surprising that local restaurants are pulling out all the stops to make this Valentine’s Day in Santa Barbara is one of...

Feb 52019

Montecito Estates: Calling New Owners to Paradise

DISTINGUISHED PROPERTY FOR THE MOST DISCERNING BUYERS Affluent buyers insist there’s something exceedingly special about Montecito estates. Perhaps it’s their location in this rarified enclave of just under 10,000 mostly affluent residents; neig...

Feb 42019

Experience the 34th Annual Santa Barbara International Film Festival

LIGHTS. CAMERA. ACTION! SBIFF SHOWCASES ALL THINGS CINEMATIC This is the time of year when major celebrities and their entourages descend on Santa Barbara for the annual Santa Barbara International Film Festival (SBIFF), taking place through Februar...

Jan 292019

3 Ways to Maximize Your Profit When Selling a Home

THE NOT SO SECRET SECRETS OF SAVVY SELLERS I'm sure you want to maximize your profit when selling a home. Many people are tempted to consider options such as working with a discount real estate agent or entering into a sale-by-owner program, but I...

Jan 252019

6 Ways to Build Wealth Without Touching the Stock Market

HERE ARE SOME DIVERSE AND LUCRATIVE INVESTMENT OPTIONS There are so many ways to build wealth without relying on one of the most common wealth-building platforms: the stock market. To some, investing in the stock market might feel a bit risky today ...

Jan 222019

The Best Smart Home Devices For 2019

5 NEW, INTELLIGENT GADGETS YOU'LL WANT TO PURCHASE  A plethora of the best smart home devices was unveiled at the 2019 Consumer Electronics Show (CES) this year. That’s the annual trade show, organized by the Consumer Technology Association and h...

Jan 182019

The Junk Drawer: A Montecito Tradition?

EVEN LUXURY HOMES HAVE A JUNK DRAWER OR TWO  I’m going to take a bold step here and assume that literally every Montecito residence – including my own – has at least one junk drawer. Are those receptacles of random stuff a metaphor for how yo...

Jan 152019

“California Chic” is Alive and Well in Montecito

THE EFFORTLESS COOL LOOK SYNONYMOUS WITH CALIFORNIA STYLE If you already live in Montecito or just about any of the communities in or around Santa Barbara, there’s a good chance you’re already embracing “California Chic.”  It comes easy for...

Jan 112019

Listing Your Home in Santa Barbara

NOW MIGHT BE THE BEST TIME TO DO IT You may have heard that the housing market is softening. If you’re thinking about listing your home in Santa Barbara or Montecito, NOW is the best time to do it. According to a year-end report from Realtor.com, ...

Jan 92019

2019 Home Décor Trends: 6 Will Be Hot This Year

RING IN THE NEW YEAR WITH THE LATEST STYLES AND DESIGNS Do you know what's in when it comes to 2019 home décor trends? We’re talking everything from the latest color palettes and new innovations in bathrooms (flotation bathtubs?) and kitchens (sm...

Jan 42019

The Santa Barbara School District

SCHOOL QUALITY HAS A MIGHTY INFLUENCE ON HOME BUYERS Many of my customers ask me about the Santa Barbara School District, the main public school district that serves Santa Barbara and Goleta. I am happy to answer that the Santa Barbara’s public s...

Jan 22019

New Year’s Resolutions: Facts, Trends and Santa Barbara Specific

Plus, 20 laugh out loud New Year’s Resolutions culled from Twitter Can you believe it’s already been a year since we made and broke all our New Year’s Resolutions? I can’t. According to research on the topic, about 60% of us admit that we ma...

Dec 282018

Next Housing Crash Prediction: Is One Coming?

5 reasons NOT to fear a housing crash As we head into 2019, it seems like everyone is awaiting the experts’ next housing crash prediction.  Some of those experts do warn there’s trouble brewing in the U.S. housing market; asserting fear that an...

Dec 262018

A Look Back At Montecito Real Estate in 2018

Tight inventory, rising prices, and even nature’s fury failed to dissuade my optimistic buyers and sellers in Montecito and Santa Barbara As we look back at real estate in 2018, experts say the housing crisis finally made a comeback. Tight invento...

Dec 212018

The Montecito Village Recovery Fund: Locals Helping Montecito Recover

Disasters such as the Thomas Fire and the 1/9 debris flow can have long-term ramifications for local businesses Tragedies such as the Thomas Fire and the 1/9 Debris Flow would be devastating for any town, but for quaint Montecito, local leaders and ...

Dec 182018

Survey Finds More People Are Working From Home Today

12 Tips on taking the plunge and creating the perfect office in your Montecito home Recent data compiled by a consortium of economists, data scientists, designers, researchers, and business executives compiled a comprehensive report, Data USA, that ...

Dec 132018

Emerging Real Estate Trends 2019 Could See

According to the Urban Land Institute, the future of real estate is complicated The Urban Land Institute (ULI) just released its annual Emerging Trends inReal Estate Report for 2019. One word sums up the findings for the coming year and that word is...

Dec 112018

Traveling for the Holidays? How About Booking a Private Jet?

8 Benefits of Flying by Private Jet  Are you planning on traveling for the holidays? Commercial airlines today are vying for your business by selling elaborate seats, suites and private apartments to make first class more extravagant than ever befor...

Dec 72018

Celebrity Homes: Santa Barbara Sanctuaries of the Famous

Santa Barbara is the secret hiding place for many of Hollywood’s ultra-rich and famous Santa Barbara is a true oasis for the famous, which is why you’ll find so many celebrity homes here. The fact that celebrities choose to live on the American ...

Dec 42018

Is a Recession Coming?

Recessions happen. 5 warning signs to watch for. While our economy is at full steam right now, lately I’ve been hearing the question “Is a recession coming?” from clients and colleagues.  A decade after the global financial crisis, the United...

Nov 302018

Creating a Cozy Home: 9 Ways to Generate a Comfy Space This Winter

Don’t let the predicted gray, rainy skies ruin your mood It’s that time of year when many of us here in Santa Barbara turn our attention to creating a cozy home.  According to the Old Farmer’s Almanac, winter temperatures will be near or cool...

Nov 272018

Montecito Community Leadership Forms The Partnership for Resilient Communities

As our neighbors in Ventura and Los Angeles begin to recover from the Woolsey Fire, Montecito community leaders form The Partnership for Resilient Communities I’m thoroughly impressed with the Montecito community leadership that formed the Partner...

Nov 232018

Thinking of Buying a Home During the Holidays?

FORGET BLACK FRIDAY DEALS, THE HOLIDAYS ARE A GREAT WAY TO SAVE MONEY ON A NEW HOME  Are you considering buying a home during the holidays? I’m here to tell you that's an excellent idea!   As I explained in a previous blog, Spring is the best t...

Nov 202018

Million-dollar Homes to Million-dollar Neighborhoods: The Rise of the 7-figure Enclave

Statistics show the million-dollar neighborhood is a growing phenomenon despite the recent market cool-down After analyzing home values across the country, including right here in Montecito, the experts at Trulia have issued a new report showing 7-...

Nov 162018

How to Protect Your Home While You’re Selling

8 home protection tips for Santa Barbara sellers Selling a home in Santa Barbara isn’t necessarily unsafe; however, it’s always a good idea to take precautionary safety measures to protect your home and treasures as soon as you list with your fa...

Nov 132018

What Does a Santa Barbara Thanksgiving Look Like?

Check out my list of 8 must-do activities in and around town A Santa Barbara Thanksgiving might look a lot different than the holiday appears in other parts of the country. Besides eating turkey, stuffing, potatoes, and pumpkin, Santa Barbarians lov...

Nov 92018

How to Care for High-end Furniture

A little care and TLC can make well-designed home furnishings last a long, long time You invested your time and money into your high-end furniture. Don’t you want to keep it looking great? I know I do. That’s why I spoke to my friends at one of ...

Nov 62018

What is the Color of the Year for 2019?

The color of the year depends on which paint company you ask It’s that fun time of the year when paint color nerds look forward to the paint manufacturers announcing their annual “Color of the Year.”  Here’s the thing. Sherwin Williams, BEH...

Nov 22018

Home Prices on the West Coast Hit a Wall

Supply spikes and slow sales indicate a buyer’s market is on the horizon   Data from the last two months suggests home prices on the West Coast have entered a new stage. While sellers have had it easy over the last few years, today houses are s...

Oct 302018

Would You Buy a Haunted House?

Check out this video of haunted house ghost stories from the Wall Street Journal In honor of Halloween, I thought I’d take a look at the challenges of selling a haunted house. Would you buy one? In the real estate game, haunted houses have the off...

Oct 262018

Winterizing Your Home: Even Santa Barbara Homes Need to be Winter Ready

Now is the time to prepare for the cold and rain Fall is the best time to begin winterizing your home, even for those of us who live in sunny Santa Barbara. Although U.S. News & World Report lists Santa Barbara as the best place in the U.S. to ...

Oct 192018

Art and Architecture: The Versatile World of Brixels™

Bricks + Pixels = contemporary building blocks for luxury home facades and interior design  My prediction: Interior design, art, and architecture in 21st-century luxury homes are about to experience a radical yet practical new trend. Use of an exo...

Oct 162018

Santa Barbara Recognized As One of the Best Small Cities in the Nation

The prestigious honor comes from the Conde Nast Traveler 2018 Readers’ Choice Awards Santa Barbara has been named one of the “Best Small Cities in the U.S.” by the folks who read Conde Nast Traveler. Since 2015, readers have praised the Amer...

Oct 122018

Aging at Home in Santa Barbara

Six ways to adapt your home as your needs change As our population continues to get older, aging at home becomes more and more important. Scientists predict that by 2050, the number of Americans ages 65 and older will reach 88.5 million. That’s m...

Oct 102018

Selling a Montecito Home? 5 Décor Ideas to Hide The Kid’s Mess

Hide the mess in plain sight Keeping it together when selling a Montecito home can be a major challenge, especially for sellers with kids. The process of keeping everything clean and tidy when your Realtor brings potential buyers to showings can be ...

Oct 52018

Celebrate the Avocado at The California Avocado Festival®

The California Avocado Festival® is California's Largest FREE music festival Don’t miss the California Avocado Festival taking place October 5 - 7 on Linden Avenue in Carpinteria. This is one of the largest FREE festivals in the entire state of...

Oct 42018

A Formula for Healthy Living: Santa Barbara + 7 Nifty Gadgets

Living in A Healthy Location Combined With a Few Helpful Devices Will Make Your Life a Little Easier Experts will tell you a significant key to healthy living is residing in a healthy community. Those of us who are lucky enough to call Santa Barbara...

Sep 272018

Fiscal Fitness: The Advantages of Investing in Your Health

The fitness industry and the world of finance might seem like an unusual pairing but they’re not as disparate as you might think Fiscal fitness is a piece of financial advice that is nothing to scoff about. It’s real. By investing in your health...

Sep 252018

Home Sales in California: Good News for Homebuyers

Home Prices and Inventory Play Big Roles According to the California Association of Realtors (C.A.R.), the number of home sales in California has fallen below 400,000, and below last month’s escrow closings. It’s been two years since exist...

Sep 242018

Current Mortgage Rates Hit 7-Year High

The benchmark 30-year fixed mortgage rate made the largest weekly jump since last April Financial experts report the current mortgage rate has risen to a new high. Today’s average 15-year fixed rate, along with the average 5/1 adjustable-rate mort...

Sep 182018

Santa Barbara Living: Testament to Why It’s a Top 100 City

What makes Santa Barbara one of the best places to live? Livability.com ranks Santa Barbara, aka the American Rivera, number 30 in the top 100 best places to live. To understand why Santa Barbara living is so prized, all you need to do is take a loo...

Sep 142018

Capital Gains Tax: 3 Dreaded Words When Selling Your Home

Do you qualify for capital gains tax exemptions? Capital gains tax applies when you sell something for a profit. That means if you’re selling your home for more than you paid for it, you need to report that gain to the Internal Revenue Service. Th...

Sep 112018

California Wine Month: the Perfect Time to Enjoy Some Delicious Santa Barbara Pinot Noir

Vintage After Vintage, Foxen Pinot Noir Receives High Acclaim and Awards September is California Wine Month, the perfect reason to head to Foxen Vineyards in Santa Barbara Wine Country’s Santa Maria Valley to enjoy a glass of award-winning Pino No...

Sep 82018

20 Tips for Staging a Home for Sale

Home staging is the key to selling your home quickly and for top dollar Staging a home for sale is one of the most important things I do – or recommend my clients do. For some, the idea of staging their home can be overwhelming. But it doesn’t h...

Sep 62018

Smart Security Solutions: 5 Reasons to Consider One for Your Montecito Home

Did you know that 90% of convicted burglars say they would avoid homes with smart security solutions? Statistics show that every 14.5 seconds, a burglary is reported to the police. Montecito homeowners who don’t want to become part of that statist...

Aug 302018

A Montecito Estate: The Perfect Venue for an Outdoor Bath

Here are some homes just waiting for you to create a soothing escape on the grounds of your Montecito estate Picture yourself enjoying a relaxing soak outdoors at your luxury Montecito estate. With a glass of fine wine or a cup of tea in hand, inhal...

Aug 292018

Master Bath Renovation: 4 Reasons To Do It Now

A master bath renovation adds value to your home and much, much more! There are many reasons homeowners decide to begin a master bath renovation. As I stated in a previous blog, master baths have become must-haves for today’s high-end homebuyers....

Aug 242018

Lotusland: One of the World’s 10 Best Gardens

Lotusland: the perfect place to bask in Santa Barbara’s botanical beauty Everyone knows about Santa Barbara’s beautiful beaches, impressive architecture, and perfect Mediterranean weather, but do you know about Montecito’s Lotusland? Since 199...

Aug 212018

A Buyer’s Market? More Home Listings, But . . .

We’re seeing more home listings, but it’s not a buyer’s market, due to high prices According to a new housing inventory report from Trulia, we’re seeing more home listings across the country today which might sound like great news for homeb...

Aug 172018

The Top 10 Home Kitchen Design Trends for 2019

What do you want in a home kitchen design or renovation? You might be surprised about the trends in home kitchen design for 2019. Some are old, others are new. Whether you’re planning to stay in your home or list it in the coming year, a trophy ki...

Aug 142018

Santa Barbara Salt Cave

Santa Barbara Salt Cave is the largest underground Crystal Salt Cave in North America I’ve blogged previously about the healthy lifestyle we live here in Santa Barbara but the incredible facility and spa called the Santa Barbara Salt Cave, takes ...

Aug 102018

6 Things Homesellers Should Avoid

Here are Important Things for Homesellers to Steer Clear of  It’s a seller’s market but for homesellers, that doesn’t mean anything goes. You still need to take the time to prepare and market your house. Before you begin your house selling jo...

Aug 72018

Moving Advice: What To Keep and What to Leave Behind

My moving advice includes 10 items to leave and 5 things you’ll want to keep safe I’ve shared moving advice in previous blogs including “6 Moving Mistakes to Avoid,” but I haven’t shared the fact that moving is the perfect time to get rid ...

Jul 312018

6 California Real Estate Laws Buyers Need to Know About

From taxes to disclosure requirements, California real estate laws include some unique practices Whether you plan to purchase your own home or buy investment property in the sunshine state, California Real Estate laws affect your transaction. Buying...

Jul 262018

Buying a Home vs. Leasing One

3 questions to ask when deciding to buy or lease a home If you’re in a quandary about whether to buy or lease a home in today’s volatile real estate market, you’re not alone. According to The Pew Research Center, more U.S. households are leasi...

Jul 242018

Top 4 “Real Estate Facts” Debunked

Experts agree: conventional wisdom surrounding so-called real estate facts is not always accurate We’ve all heard them, and everyone assumes these nuggets of wisdom are true, but should we rely on what are often considered real estate facts? Exper...

Jul 202018

New Real Estate Trend: Buying a House Sight Unseen

Would you ever buy a home based on a real estate trend? Buying a home without seeing it first is – as crazy as it sounds – a new real estate trend. According to those in the know, it’s becoming a new normal in America. Of course, most peopl...

Jul 172018

Extreme Lawn Care: Are You a Competitor?

10 Summer lawn care tips from the extreme lawn care guru I’ve blogged before about the importance of curb appeal but extreme lawn care is new to me. Would you pick blades of grass by hand or vacuum your lawn? Some homeowners across the country do....

Jul 132018

Selling a Home: Want to do it Quickly and For Top Dollar?

Avoid These 10 Mistakes While Selling a Home Fast Preparation is key if you’re interested in selling a home fast and for top dollar. That’s why I’ve created this list of the top 10 mistakes home sellers make that can keep their home sitting on...

Jul 102018

Santa Barbara Homeowners: The Best Way to Build Accessory Dwelling Units

What You Need to Know About Accessory Dwelling Units, aka Guest Cottages or Guesthouses, in Santa Barbara I blogged about the new law regarding accessory dwelling units (ADU) last year. Since the passage of Senate Bill 1069, hundreds of Santa Barbar...

Jul 52018

Kitchen Trends: Terrazzo Countertops

Terrazzo countertops are among the latest kitchen trends. And the versatile material has quite a history. The distinct look can be traced back to ancient Egypt. What we know as terrazzo today was developed by builders in Venice, Italy, and original...

Jul 32018

Planning to Adopt a Dog? 6 Steps to Successfully Integrate a Furry Family Member into Your Home

Set yourself up for success when you adopt a dog When you adopt a dog, you can expect loads of unconditional love along with unwanted hair, dirt, and slobber. As a true dog lover, I’m always excited to hear when a friend or client gets a new fur b...

Jun 292018

Buyer’s Remorse Keeping You Awake?

If Buyer’s Remorse, or even Seller’s Remorse is Keeping You Awake, Here are Some Remedies Sleep, or lack of it, is such an important topic that I’ve blogged about it before, but I’ve never looked at how buyer’s remorse or second-guessi...

Jun 262018

Is Buying a Home Together Before Getting Married a Good Idea?

Couples considering buying a home together should heed these warnings In a previous blog, I shared info about a prenuptial deed when buying a home together after you’ve tied the knot. But what if you and your partner decide to buy a home togethe...

Jun 222018

The Real Estate Market: Then and Now

Comparing the real estate market in 1988 to now is more than just a nostalgia trip I just read an article in curbed.com about the annual State of the Nation’s Housing report from The Harvard Joint Center for Housing Studies and found the intel ...

Jun 202018

What You Need to Know About Home Inspectors in Santa Barbara

Homebuyers: here’s a checklist to share with home inspectors in Santa Barbara When you're looking for home inspectors in Santa Barbara, there are several things you need to keep in mind. While I’ve blogged about home inspections before, it’s ...

Jun 152018

Santa Barbara Real Estate Prices Are HOT!

Are you ready to list your piece of Santa Barbara Real Estate? Now is the time! The Santa Barbara real estate prices are HOT this spring and summer. Not in temperature. We still enjoy our year-round Mediterranean weather. But in home prices. Whil...

Jun 122018

Indoor Rock Climbing at the Santa Barbara Rock Gym

PERFECT FATHER'S DAY GIFT FOR ACTIVE SANTA BARBARA DADS: A DAY OF ROCK CLIMBING AT SANTA BARBARA'S INDOOR CLIMBING GYM Guys love to climb so what better gift to give Dad on Father’s Day then a Rock Climbing Adventure either at the new indoor roc...

Jun 112018

Tips for Moving with Children

Guest post by Alexis Hall, author of SingleParent.info Moving is an important step in any family’s life. It can be stressful and exciting, filled with hopes and fears. For children, there are risks that come from the instability that moving can p...

Jun 72018

Who Gets the House in a Divorce?

Anyone getting divorced needs to consider their real estate assets Disputes over major assets like your home are common among those who are getting divorced. That’s not surprising since a home is one of the largest major assets of any couple. Wha...

Jun 52018

Dive into These 8 Pool Trends for 2018

Some of these pool trends might surprise you! These 8 pool trends for 2018 are perfect for those of us who call Santa Barbara home. With our perfect year-round Mediterranean weather, we can enjoy our pools all year long. Thinking of adding a pool?...

May 312018

Is the American Dream Alive or Dead?

Does the American Dream mean owning a home? What is the American Dream? A recent study showed that 53% of those asked believed owning a home is central to the American Dream while 18% thought it was the most important part. While that dream has dr...

May 292018

Embracing Smart House Technology

5 easy ways to add smart house technology into your home By now, every homeowner should know about the importance of integrating smart house technology into their home. I’ve blogged about the topic several times including this one that answers t...

May 252018

Top Residential Architects in Montecito and Santa Barbara History

These four top residential architects of Montecito and Santa Barbara brought their own unique style to our area George Washington Smith Architect George Washington Smith is Montecito’s and Santa Barbara’s most admired home designer, ha...

May 222018

Don’t Sabotage Yourself When Selling Your Home

Read This List of 9 Seemingly Trivial Things to Avoid When Selling Your Hom With 25 plus years in the real estate business, I’ve seen everything when it comes to selling your home. Even if you believe your home is in good shape to sell, I recomm...

May 182018

The Housing Market: Is This the Most Competitive in Recorded History?

Experts say, “Yes” Rising real estate costs, demographic shifts, and low inventory has combined to create the most competitive housing market in recorded history. Underbuilding is also a key factor, due to rising costs, labor shortages, and zon...

May 102018

Adult Treehouse? That’s Right! They’re Not Just for Kids Anymore

  Our Mediterranean climate makes Santa Barbara the perfect place to build an adult treehouse I just read a story in the Wall Street Journal about a growing new trend: the adult treehouse. I’ve blogged previously about the man cave, and ...

May 82018

Top 10 Things You’ll Want for Your “Pinterest Kitchen”

Follow this list to get more likes and re-pins of your “Pinterest kitchen” Is your home’s culinary center a luxury Pinterest kitchen? I don’t know about you, but I can sit for hours on Pinterest in a sea of gorgeous, envy-inducing homes. E...

May 32018

Home remodeling: should you fix up your house before selling?

Many home sellers ask if they should do the necessary home remodeling or sell as a fixer upper With more than 25 years in the industry, I get asked all the time about home remodeling. Is it better to fix up your house before selling or sell it as a ...

May 12018

6 Moving Mistakes to Avoid

Preparation: the best way to prevent common moving mistakes In my 25+ years in the industry, I’ve seen it all, including common moving mistakes that could have, and should have, been avoided. In previous blogs, I’ve shared tips for green movin...

Apr 262018

Are Domestic Robots in Your Future? Amazon Hopes So

TESTING HAS ALREADY BEGUN IN HOMES Bloomberg reports that Amazon has been quietly working on a new project that could have big implications: domestic robots. The retail and cloud computing giant embarked on the ambitious, top-secret plan a few years...

Apr 242018

Moving with Children?

Here are 10 Tips to Prepare Kids for a Stress-Free Move Moving with children can be stressful. Think about it: children respond to the general atmosphere set in the home by the attitudes of their parents. If you view moving as an exciting adventur...

Apr 192018

How to Integrate A Dog Shower into Your Home

8 expert tips for designing a dedicated dog shower for your four-legged family member Last week, I blogged about renovations popular among home buyers today: like a designated dog shower. In that blog, I promised to share these 8 expert tips on ho...

Apr 162018

How to Work with A Realtor® To Find Your Dream Home

8 tips to keep in mind when shopping for your dream home Are you looking for a real estate agent to help you find your dream home? Realtors® like me pride ourselves on finding the perfect home sweet home for our clients. Take this Mid-century Moder...

Apr 162018

8 Housewarming Traditions from Around the World

Housewarming Traditions: Would you invite a cow to welcome you to your new home? Boil Milk & Rice In the Vasthu Sastra Indian tradition, many acts are performed to bless the home and ward off evil spirits. Boiling milk and rice unti...

Apr 122018

Return on Investment: Can Adding a Pizza Oven Be Worthwhile?

Understanding what's popular among home buyers today can help homeowners make educated decisions about remodeling If you’re a homeowner looking to maximize your return on investment, Zillow says to check out what today’s homebuyers are looking...

Apr 92018

Spring Home Maintenance List

Experts share their top 8 tips Each season comes with its own home maintenance list. Last fall, I shared a home maintenance list for that season. Now that it’s spring, there’s a whole new list of things to do around your home. Spring is the perf...

Apr 62018

2018 Home Prices Keep Growing. Economists Say There’s No End in Sight

The seller's market continues, especially here in California I searched the internet to find out what leading economists say about the fact that home prices keep growing; wondering if the market will continue this trend throughout 2018. And the answ...

Apr 32018

The Future of Real Estate: Think Globally

6 predictions for 2020 . . . and beyond Experts predict the future of real estate will change considerably over the next six years and beyond. Those changes in light of the fact that consumer confidence has returned to the real estate arena. The ...

Mar 302018

Why is Spring is the Best Time of Year to Sell Your House?

6 reasons to list your home with me now! If you're considering listing your home in any of the upscale communities in Santa Barbara, take note: spring is the best time of year to sell your house. Whenever possible, I urge my clients to follow conven...

Mar 222018

Another Fed Rate Hike? 7 Ways the Fed’s Decisions Affects Your Wallet

A Fed rate hike from tops economic news this week The Fed rate hike that was anticipated became a reality when newly appointed Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell announced a modest benchmark interest rate hike of between 1.5 percent and 1.75. Th...

Mar 192018

Is a New Housing Crunch on The Horizon?

Experts say "Yes", citing fewer homes being built in America as one reason for the new housing crunch The job market is strong, the stock market is setting new records and wages are rising, so why is America facing a new housing crunch? According to...

Mar 162018

A Rare Opportunity to own the Palmyra Estate in Montecito

MY NEW LISTING IS A PIECE OF MONTECITO'S HISTORIC EL MIRADOR ESTATE Imagine owning the Palmyra estate in Montecito: a historic, breathtaking and very private 4.5-acre grand property. Originally part of a large family-owned 70-acre estate known as E...

Mar 132018

Things to Do in Santa Barbara this Spring

There's no denying that Santa Barbara is beautiful this time of year There's so much to do in Santa Barbara this Spring it can be difficult to decide where to begin. With all the Spring flowers popping up and the many activities, there's never a dul...

Mar 62018

What You Really Need to Know to Find A Real Estate Agent

Close friends and relatives should generally be avoided I've written several blogs about how to find a real estate agent, including How to Hire a Competent Realtor: Consider Their Use of Technology. I know being a real estate agent involves more tha...

Mar 12018

Own a piece of Santa Barbara History

Just announced: a price reduction on the penthouse of the historic Granada Theater Now is your chance to own a piece of Santa Barbara history at a reduced price! Only $4,175,000 gets you the penthouse of the iconic Granada Theatre building in downt...

Feb 262018

Smart Speakers: Which One is Right for You?

What to Look for When Buying Smart Speakers If you haven't already jumped on the smart speaker bandwagon, then listen up. These devices work just fine as a way to play music from your smartphone or the cloud. But that's not all. When you talk to a s...

Feb 222018

Using Mindfulness Techniques to Tackle Clutter

How practicing mindfulness techniques can help Santa Barbara homeowners Practicing mindfulness techniques in everything, including clearing out the clutter we've accumulated in our home, can help bring awareness of personal issues. "When we operate...

Feb 192018

This New Summerland Real Estate Listing is a Mid-century Beauty

Combining chic design and classic comfort with a nostalgic flair in a piece of Summerland Real Estate My new listing, a Mid-century beauty in this charming beach town next door to Montecito, is a standout among Summerland real estate.  It's a wond...

Feb 152018

SOLD: A Piece of Country in the City

This Hope Ranch Annex Mini-ranch offers the best of both worlds I just made another sale, this time it's a mini ranch in Santa Barbara's highly desirable Hope Ranch Annex that offers a piece of country in the city. Ah, country living—fresh air, wi...

Feb 132018

SOLD: Hope Ranch Dream Home

Hope Ranch: a beautiful hidden enclave on the Santa Barbara coast I just found the perfect Hope Ranch dream home for my new clients. The exquisite estate has been re-designed and executed to the highest level of taste and finish. Featuring sweeping...

Feb 82018

SOLD: Another Perfect Montecito Showcase Estate

I just found the perfect Montecito showcase estate for one of my discerning buyers: a Montecito Mid-Century Ranch set among classic Montecito estates in a coveted neighborhood of grand and timeless homes. Montecito is a destination for people all ov...

Feb 62018

Beautiful Toro Canyon Estate Sold: Is the Santa Barbara Real Estate Market is Hot?

The Santa Barbara real estate market is still looking hot: showing an increase 11% in median home sales over the past year. Those include my recent sale of a Beautiful Toro Canyon Estate. I loved finding the perfect new homeowners for this showcase ...

Feb 12018

7 Tips to Create a Happy Home

What makes a happy home? I saw this video of Reese Witherspoon giving her personal tips on creating a happy home and it got me thinking about the topic. Consider this: just as you can affect your environment, your environment can affect you. Therefo...

Jan 282018

Kitchen Confidential: A Trophy Kitchen Can Sell Your Home

Did you know that a trophy kitchen can sell your home better than anything else? Nowadays you need a trophy kitchen to sell your house. Why? Because today's buyers are looking for high-end appliances, gorgeously designed cabinets, and stone countert...

Jan 232018

6 Things to Do in January to Give Your Home Some TLC

What will you do in January to give your home some TLC? January is the perfect time to give your home some TLC. You celebrated the holidays and rang in the New Year. Now make the most of the first month of the year by clearing space in your home, bo...

Jan 202018

Will the Santa Barbara Film Festival be Held This Year? Yes!

The Show Must Go On! Will the Santa Barbara Film Festival be held this year while many who live in Santa Barbara and Montecito struggle with the effects of the recent destructive wildfire and devastating mudslide? The answer is YES! As the clean-up ...

Jan 182018

The ABCs of Creating an Emergency Plan

The devastating mudslides caused by the recent fires made me think of creating an emergency plan for my family. How about you? I'm offering my own personal input to those of you considering – or not considering -- creating an emergency plan. Do yo...

Jan 182018

How to Hire a Competent Realtor: Consider Their Use of Technology

Do you know how to hire a competent Realtor? If you are currently selling your property or planning on listing it, your first step is to hire a competent Realtor. Consider their use of technology. Your search for a qualified professional should inc...

Jan 102018

6 Predictions for the 2018 Housing Market

Experts share 6 predictions for the 2018 housing market including lower home price growth, continued inventory issues, and evolving design trends. According to the latest report from realtor.com, experts share 6 predictions for the 2018 housing mar...

Jan 82018

Interior Decorating for 2018: What’s Hot and What’s Not

Do you know what's hot and what's not in interior decorating for 2018? According to Zillow, here are five design trends you'll be seeing more of this year, and three to kiss goodbye, especially if one of your New Year's resolutions is to sell your h...

Jan 32018

Experts Predict California Home Prices Will Continue to Rise in 2018

Experts predict California home prices will continue to rise in 2018. Why such good news? Because the housing recovery is projected to continue for a sixth straight year in 2018. The other news is that the gains will be more modest than in the past, ...

Dec 202017

6 Steps to Protect Your Home from Wildfires

Anxiety continues to be high for residents of Santa Barbara County, where the Thomas wildfire continues to destroy the landscape Do you know how to protect your home from wildfires? If you like in Santa Barbara, you should! The New York Times warns...

Dec 172017

SOLD: Perfect Showcase Home Within the Montecito Golden Quadrangle

I just found the perfect showcase home within the Montecito Golden Quadrangle for one of my discerning buyers. The family can now be counted among a small group of 'exclusive' owners of a George Washington Smith (GWS) Collection of notable homes in t...

Dec 122017

Diversify Your Portfolio by Investing in Real Estate

Here are 3 ways to diversify your portfolio It's a new year and time to evaluate your finances and diversify your portfolio by investing in real estate. One of the biggest reasons investors diversify their real estate portfolio is to mitigate ri...

Dec 112017

The Laws: California Real Estate Disclosures

What are my disclosure obligations when selling a home in Santa Barbara? Do you know real estate disclosure laws vary from state to state? The law when it comes to California real estate disclosures requires residential property sellers to report, i...

Dec 82017

SOLD: Beautiful Santa Barbara Mesa Home With Pool

My latest sale, a beautiful Santa Barbara Mesa home with pool, is proof that homes do sell over the holidays. If you're considering listing your property for sale over the holidays, I say go for it! Selling your home during this time of year means re...

Dec 72017

The Laws: California Real Estate Disclosures

What are my disclosure obligations when selling a home in Santa Barbara? Do you know real estate disclosure laws vary from state to state? The law when it comes to California real estate disclosures requires residential property sellers to report, i...

Dec 52017

4 Elements of Real Estate Legal Protection

Do you have a plan when it comes to real estate asset protection? You should. Consider this: the value of your real estate holdings may be significant and can be used to cover damages awarded in a lawsuit. The following 4 elements will help protect y...

Dec 12017

Whale Watching in Santa Barbara

Hop aboard a whale watching tour and see why the Santa Barbara Channel is one of the best places in the world for spotting sea life The best season for whale watching in Santa Barbara begins in late November. Those of us lucky enough to call Santa...

Nov 272017

Decorating and Selling a Home During the Holidays

Many sellers listing their home this time of year ask if they should decorate over the holidays. In a previous blog, I discussed how home sellers should romance potential homebuyers over the holidays: adding a bit of holiday cheer being among the t...

Nov 222017

New Listing with Amazing Views on the Coveted Santa Barbara Mesa

If you're looking for a home with amazing views, then you must see my new listing, a beautiful home located on the coveted Santa Barbara Mesa. This remodeled and updated home features 5 bedrooms and 3 full baths. One bedroom could easily be used as a...

Nov 202017

Remodel or Move? 5 Things Homeowners Should Ask

I'm asked all the time by homeowner's whether they should remodel or move. Here's what experts believe are the 5 things homeowners should ask when making the important decision to stay put or move out. Is your home in your heart? You may be ...

Nov 162017

12 Tasks for Your Homeowner To-Do List

There are certain things every homeowner should do yearly, monthly, weekly and daily to keep their home in tip-top shape. Since that list can feel daunting, I've put together a homeowner to-do list of just the essentials. Here are the top 12: ...

Nov 142017

Chic Holiday Décor Ideas from The Experts

It's that time of year to think about holiday décor. If your idea of decorating over the holidays still centers around popcorn on a string and ornaments that have seen better days, it may be time for an upgrade. Instead, think modern hues an...

Nov 102017

Who Needs Flood Insurance?

Floods are the nation's most common and costly natural disaster and cause millions of dollars in damage every year In a previous blog, I shared that FEMA advises Califonia residents to purchase flood insurance. The question of flood insurance is a h...

Nov 62017

Four Pitfalls That Cause Buyers to Let the Right Home Slip By

I just read in Realty Times about the four pitfalls that cause buyers to let the right home slip by. If you're in the market for a new home, avoid these pitfalls and you'll quickly find the right house and the right investment for your future. N...

Nov 22017

Housing Inventory Reaches a 20-Year Low

As boomers decide to stay put, so are approximately 33 million properties, blocking the path to entry for millennials and first-time home buyers Housing inventory has hit a 20-year low as the appeal of McMansions wanes and Baby Boomers grow increa...

Oct 312017

Tax reform and real estate: potential impacts of the proposed changes

Tax reform and real estate are inexorably linked. While tax reform, at the present moment, still has a long road to legislative success, the proposed overhaul has numerous potential impacts on the real estate world. Before the perusing, parsing and p...

Oct 262017

Teaching children financial responsibility: Start with Halloween!

It may sound a little strange but Halloween might be one of the best holidays for teaching children financial responsibility. Leading finance experts were asked to share their financial wisdom and strategies surrounding Halloween and the answers were...

Oct 232017

No Time to Exercise? Try Cleaning Your House to Burn Calories!

10 Household Chores That Will Get You Sweating Cleaning your house to burn calories? That's just one of the great benefits of having a tidy home. There's also the psychological advantages of living in a clean home or the fact that a clean house just...

Oct 202017

FOR LEASE: Sprawling Montecito Hacienda

Don't miss this opportunity to lease an amazing home located in a coveted Montecito location close to shops, restaurants & beaches Imagine calling this sprawling Montecito hacienda home. My new listing for lease is a 5 bedroom, 7-bathroom stunne...

Oct 172017

SOLD: Mid Century Modern Classic on the Santa Barbara Rivera

This sale makes Don Draper jealous! I just got this new listing on the Santa Barbara Riviera a few months ago and it's already sold! I'm not surprised, this mid-century beauty is located in a coveted neighborhood of grand and timeless homes, an area...

Oct 122017

Cristal Clarke: The Expert in the Montecito Real Estate Market!

By guest blogger, Susan Hartzler There's a reason why the October 2017 issue of Mansion Global turned to Cristal Clarke for comments on the Montecito real estate market. Cristal also made the October 8, 2017, issue of The Real Deal: New York Real...

Oct 92017

Today’s Top 6 Luxury Real Estate Trends

Think smart homes, hi-tech bathrooms, a separate home for entertaining, a cooler kitchen, custom detailing, and creating a self-sufficient home I love to blog about the latest luxury real estate trends. A recent post I wrote focused on the Scandinav...

Oct 52017

Buying a Second Home? Here Are 4 Things to Consider

Find out why this could be a good time to take the leap If you've been toying with the idea of buying a second home, now could be a good time to do it. Interest rates are still low, and if you get to work quickly, your family could enjoy a new vacat...

Oct 22017

Is it Time for a New Front Door Color?

Check out 8 front door colors trending today Between trick-or-treaters and holiday guests, your front door is going to see a lot of action this fall. So why not give it a color boost? Not only will a new front door color freshen your curb appeal, it...

Sep 282017

Santa Barbara Bucket List

Whether you're in Santa Barbara for two weeks, two months, or many years, here are some things to add to your Santa Barbara bucket list that come highly recommended by locals like me. Picnic at dusk at the Mission Rose Garden The perfect sp...

Sep 252017

The Living Vehicle™: A New Vision for Sustainable Living

The key to a sustainable life is choosing the values that matter most and living accordingly Have you heard about the Living Vehicle™? Designed in California, made in America, driven by honesty, passion, and ingenuity, the Living Vehicle™ is the...

Sep 212017

Lease a Luxury Home on the Santa Barbara Riviera

Don't Miss This Opportunity to Lease a Monument to Modernist Design Ready to lease a luxury home in Santa Barbara?! Picture yourself living in a monument to modernist design along the Santa Barbara Rivera. Walk through the home's open floor plan -- ...

Sep 192017

The Most Expensive iPhone: Have Your Heard About It?

The $1,000+ iPhone X touted as the most feature-rich iPhone Imagine owning the most expensive iPhone yet. You'd want it to have the new OLED screen because it has an astonishing one-million-to-one contrast ratio, plus you'd want your expensive phone...

Sep 142017

Santa Barbara, the gateway to fun along the California Coast

The seaside village of Morro Bay is only two hours north I call Santa Barbara "the gateway to fun along the California Coast." Why? Because one of the many benefits of living here is the town's close proximity to other beach towns like the quaint se...

Sep 112017

4 Types of Flooring That Really Make Any Room

 Today's flooring options have you covered While some trends come and go, when it comes to flooring, classic styles are always instant hits. How about classic with a twist? Check out these flooring ideas from Zillow: Herringbone Hardwood If...

Sep 82017

Don’t Miss Your Opportunity to Own This Creekside Montecito Hacienda

A perfect example of Montecito's coveted indoor-outdoor lifestyle just hit the market My new listing, a magnificent Creekside Montecito Hacienda, brings Montecito's coveted indoor-outdoor lifestyle into clear focus. Just check out this video and you...

Sep 52017

A Fall Home Maintenance Checklist

Santa Barbara homeowners: Take care of little things seasonally to make a big difference! It's time to go through your fall home maintenance checklist and prepare your home for the upcoming season which officially begins on September 22, 2017. Now i...

Sep 12017

What Is the Danish Lifestyle trend called “Hygge” and How Do Santa Barbara Homeowners Embrace It?

Cozy isn't just an adjective, it's a lifestyle Woolly socks, mugs of cocoa, crackling fires...the beloved Danish lifestyle trend of hygge has wintery associations for sure. But it doesn't have to be cold out to get hygge with your home decor. ...

Aug 282017

Good news for Santa Barbara Homeowners

The numbers tell a positive story for next-door Southern California Santa Barbara homeowners, listen up! I just read an article in the Los Angeles Times that home prices have hit record highs in many corners of neighboring Southern California. And t...

Aug 252017

The Next Hot Commodity in Santa Barbara Real Estate: Agrihoods?

Taking the idea of farm-to-table to the next level Although the definition of "agrihoods" is evolving, the Urban Land Institute currently defines them as "master planned or residential communities built with a working farm as a focus." Agrihoods ...

Aug 212017

The Importance of Branding Your Santa Barbara Home For Sale

Branding your luxury home The Huffington Post published a great article about branding your luxury home before it's listed. After all, your Santa Barbara home for sale is a product, in exactly the same way as a handbag or car is a product. For this ...

Aug 182017

What Color for Sleep? Paint Colors That Promote a Better Night’s Slumber

I just read an article in My Domaine about paint colors that answer the question "What color for sleep?" In a previous blog, I shared 10 bedroom trends that can lead to a blissful sleep. This blog focuses on bedroom colors we choose to paint with...

Aug 142017

Don’t Miss Your Chance to Own an Homage to International Style in Architecture

My new listing is a true art lover's oasis Featured in the New York Times, my new listing is an homage to international style in architecture. This 3 bed 4 bath stunning home is a masterful interplay of the classic modernist design elements first ce...

Aug 102017

These are the Dog Days When it Comes to Millennial Homeownership

A space for their beloved pets drives members of this generation to leave their parents' homes I just read a story in Realty Times about a surge in Millennial homeownership. According to a new survey conducted online by Harris Poll on behalf of S...

Aug 72017

Here’s a Secret to Making Money in Real Estate

I just found this blog called Money-ish which gave me some food for thought when it comes to making money in real estate. Believe it or not, Americans who own homes that are closer to a Trader Joe's grocery store — as opposed to Whole Foods — saw...

Aug 32017

SOLD: Iconic Montecito Estate Site

I'm celebrating today with the new owners of my absolutely stunning listing: an iconic 88-acre Montecito estate site. The new owners of this prime real estate made a wise decision to purchase the site, perhaps the most impressive and pristine propert...

Jul 312017

Important Vacation Identity Theft Protection Tips

Identity theft happens to the best of us In a previous blog, I shared 10 tips to keep your home safe while on vacation, but this time I'm going to talk about preventing identity theft while you're away. Unfortunately, fraud happens, especially...

Jul 282017

If You’re a Mid-century Modern Fan, Don’t Miss My New Listing

Don Draper would appreciate this mid-century ranch set among classic Montecito estates If houses reflect the times they were designed, Mid-century Modern is the architecture of ideas, created by those who believed the forward-looking style could be ...

Jul 242017

Imagine a Piece of Big Sur in Santa Barbara

The New York Times describes Big Sur as "one of the most stunning meetings of land and sea in the world." Others agree, saying Big Sur offers the most amazing views of the mountains and the coast. Well, they haven't seen my new listing yet. More of a...

Jul 202017

Iconic Luxury Listing in Santa Barbara

Don't miss this opportunity to own the Penthouse in the Granada Theatre Building My new iconic luxury listing in Santa Barbara is the Penthouse in the Granada Theatre building right in the center of the action on State Street in downtown Santa Barb...

Jul 172017

Where Are You Going to View the Total Solar Eclipse?

Visually extinguishing the sun, a total solar eclipse is one of the most dramatic astronomical events seen by the naked eye. It generally only happens once or twice a generation, and the next one is coming on Monday, August 21. This is the first tota...

Jul 132017

Atelier at the Santa Barbara Museum of Art

Enjoy day tripping and night croquet Escape both mentally and physically to Atelier at the Santa Barbara Museum of Art. This evening of intimate, intriguing, occasionally irreverent interactions with art and artists includes night croquet on the Mus...

Jul 102017

Divorce Rates Climb for America’s 50+ Population

Make sure you know California law as it pertains to your marital home and real estate assets. Research shows that divorce rates are climbing for America's 50+ population. According to the Pew Research Center, the divorce rate among baby boomers has ...

Jul 72017

Want a Blissful Night’s Sleep? Check Out These 10 Zen Bedroom Trends

Which Zen bedroom speaks to you? I just read an article in MyDomaine with 10 Zen bedroom trends that will transform your space and even help you get a good night's sleep. Think about it; your bedroom should be on oasis, a cozy, personal, and incre...

Jul 42017

10 Tips to Keep Your Home Safe While on Vacation

I just read an article in Realty Times that shares 10 tips to keep your home safe while on vacation. Before you leave for that week or month in paradise, make sure you take care of the following: Leave the lights on?- "There are differing opi...

Jun 292017

Santa Barbara Homeowners Listen Up: Upgrade your home with CaliforniaFIRST

Get 100% upfront funding on efficiency and renewable energy upgrades Many Santa Barbara homeowners want to improve their homes but are discouraged by the upfront costs of doing the job right. Enter CaliforniaFIRST, a government-supported, low-cost,...

Jun 272017

The Fourth of July Beachfront Celebration in Santa Barbara

Independence Day 2017 rocks in Santa Barbara The City of Santa Barbara's traditional Fourth of July beachfront celebration is back and better than ever! Join other revelers at the beautiful Santa Barbara waterfront along West Beach on Independence D...

Jun 232017

Looking for a Hope Ranch Home? Here’s One Close-by!

If you're looking for a country home in the city, let's talk! My new listing in Santa Barbara offers the amenities of a Hope Ranch home with the tranquility of a country home in the city. I like to refer to this estate as a "mini ranch" because it's...

Jun 202017

Jeff Bridges Sells His Montecito Estate

Santa Barbara resident Jeff Bridges, sold his Italian-inspired 19.5-acre Montecito estate recently. The well-known actor first listed the incredible property two years ago after purchasing it in 1994. The original price was $30 million. A  lucky buy...

Jun 162017

A Montecito Estate Worth Considering

This Montecito estate, my newest listing, is a Mediterranean-style beauty on Picacho Lane you should definitely check out. The entire home has been remodeled to perfection. Besides the magnificent mountain views, this 4-bedroom, 4.5 baths home hosts ...

Jun 132017

Are you considering buying a vacation home? Read this first!

Seven truths about vacation home ownership According to a story in the Wall Street Journal, although the economy is firming up, interest rates are still relatively low and investment accounts are brimming, there are many things to consider before bu...

Jun 82017

SoFar Sounds brings the magic back to live music in Santa Barbara

Featuring incredible artists playing to the best audiences in the world Founded in 2010 and based… all over the place including right here in Santa Barbara, Sofar Sounds is an expanding network of artists and music lovers with a mission to "bring ...

Jun 62017

Santa Barbara Luxury Home Sellers Listen Up: Color Can Make a Big Difference in Your Final Sale Price

Study shows blues and grays are the way to go for interiors and doors; 'greige' for exteriors I just read an article in Inman with interesting details about a new study that shows how the right paint color can make a big difference in your final sal...

Jun 32017

Are Flying Taxis in our Future?

Imagine a flying taxi landing on the rooftop landing pad of your luxury Santa Barbara home! According to a story in the Robb Report, leaders at Uber, the popular ride-share network, are looking to the future, and they see a world where flying taxis...

May 302017

Record Santa Barbara Riviera Home Sale + A New Luxury Listing

I'm excited to report that my listing on Knoll Circle Drive, A beautiful Santa Barbara Riviera ocean view home, has sold and set a neighborhood sales record! I'm not surprised. The home features breathtaking views through to the ocean and city skylin...

May 262017

The Montaña Magica Treehouse; A Magical Vacation Destination

This spot in the Chilean Patagonian Rainforest Should Be on Your Bucket List! Introducing the "Magic Mountain" Treehouse in the Chilean Patagonian Rainforest. Those of us lucky enough to call Santa Barbara home are very selective when it comes to le...

May 232017

OstrichLand USA: Another Reason to Visit the Santa Ynez Valley

The place to hang out with some of nature's strangest, most magnificent birds Just 45-minutes outside of Santa Barbara is the quaint Danish-themed town of Solvang, the Chumash Casino, world famous Santa Ynez Valley wineries, and OstrichLand USA. Nev...

May 192017

Santa Barbara Zoo Camp: Everything You Need to Know!

Check out the Youth Behind-the-Scenes Fun and Hands-On Learning at These Special Summer Camps With summertime right around the corner and summer plans firming up quickly, I wanted to share info about one of the wildest summer programs around: Zoo Ca...

May 122017

Top 10 Interior Design Trends to Embrace Now

Think butterflies, foldable appliances, and faux leather surfaces I often blog about the ever-changing world of interior design. Recently I shared a new way to spruce up your kitchen and bathroom using Glitter Grout. This blog will focus on interior...

May 92017

Outdoor Trends Perfect for the Santa Barbara Lifestyle

Top 6 Trends for Inside/Outside Living at its Best I just finished reading an article in Realty Times about the top outdoor trends this summer and thought the info was perfect for those of us lucky enough to live the Santa Barbara lifestyle. Here ...

May 52017

Cheers to Santa Barbara’s Craft Brew Scene in The Funk Zone

Beer connoisseurs delight in Santa Barbara's Funk Zone diversity Everyone's loving the great drinking diversity found in The Funk Zone in Santa Barbara. A big part of that diversity is credited to the emerging craft brewing scene. The kind folks a...

May 32017

Thinking of Selling Your Home? Consider Curb Appeal, Space and Updates!

Here Are Three Big Things Today's Homebuyers Are Looking for in a Santa Barbara Luxury Home I just read an article in Realty Times regarding three big things you need to keep in mind when you decide to sell your home.  As the article states, seller...

Apr 282017

Two Trends Affecting the Housing Market Make This Spring the Perfect Time To Sell

  Find out why you need to list your Santa Barbara property now The Associated Press reports two trends are affecting the U.S. housing market right now and they both benefit sellers. First, home prices rose steadily in February, increasing by ...

Apr 252017

Do You Know About the New Law Regarding Legal Secondary Dwellings?

Go ahead, build that Granny flat! It's legal in the state of California. Santa Barbara homeowners are in luck: there's a new law regarding legal secondary dwellings making it easier to build a second unit on their property or turn an illegal unit i...

Apr 182017

Get Ready for Game-Changing Solar Roof Tiles from Tesla

Ready to go solar? Get a Custom quote now I just read a story in Curbed.com about game-changing solar roof tiles from Tesla. Featuring a sleek, low profile design that blends into your roof with "integrated front skirts" and "no visible mounting ha...

Apr 132017

New Luxury Listing in Montecito: San Ysidro Ranch Style Cottage

Casually elegant home in highly desirable neighborhood My new luxury listing in Montecito is a lovely San Ysidro Ranch Style Cottage. Featuring 2 bedrooms, 2.5 bathrooms and a two-car garage, this casually elegant home, located at 1570 Bolero Dri...

Apr 112017

10 Plants To Spruce Up Your Santa Barbara Garden and Keep The Mosquitos Away

Do you know there are some beautiful plants that can safely act to keep mosquitos out of your Santa Barbara garden and yard? Here are 10 that are most effective: 1) Mint Mint is an effective mosquito repellant that also helps to keep flies away. It...

Apr 102017

SOLD: Carpinteria Condo With Breathtaking Mountain Views

No property listing is too big or small!! I sold a lovely Carpinteria Condominium in record time for my clients proving no property listing is too big or too small for me. Features include an open 1st level floor plan, lawns, sidewalks, pool, playgr...

Apr 42017

Featured Listing: Santa Barbara Riviera Ocean View Home

If you're looking for a new home on the Santa Barbara Riviera, let's talk! Named for its resemblance to the Mediterranean coasts of France and Italy, the Santa Barbara Riviera bridges the two-mile gap between Sycamore Canyon and Mission Canyon. My ...

Mar 302017

Ellen DeGeneres Lists Her Majestic Montecito Villa

Own the Huge Italian Style House With Breathtaking Views Television powerhouse and high-end house-flipper extraordinaire Ellen DeGeneres and her wife, actress Portia de Rossi, have put their 1930s Majestic Montecito Villa on the market for $45 mill...

Mar 282017

New Luxury Listing: Beautiful Farmhouse in Toro Canyon

Don't miss an opportunity to live in the exclusive enclave of Toro Canyon! How about moving into my new luxury listing: a Beautiful Farmhouse in Toro Canyon? The best word to describe this gated estate is enchanting, situated on +\- 2 acres, where c...

Mar 252017

New Luxury Listing in Montecito

If you're looking for a new home in Montecito, let's talk! Things are heating up in the real estate world here in Montecito and I have a new luxury listing that just hit the market. Don't let this magnificent home slip through your fingers! Magical...

Mar 222017

Glitter Grout: New Décor Trend

Make your kitchen and bathroom sparkle! Décor trends come and go but glitter grout caught my eye. Normally, grout is the last thing I get excited about. But when you add glitter to it, it feels like your kitchen or bathroom just got a face-lift....

Mar 172017

Federal Reserve Raises Interest Rate

Considering buying or selling your Santa Barbara area home? Act now! We knew the Federal Reserve would raise interest rates, but do you know how the raise will affect you? According to the Los Angeles Times, the Fed's decision to lift its benchmark ...

Mar 152017

Featured Listing: World Class Toro Estate

My featured listing this week: a prestigious world class Toro Canyon estate, Perched high in the foothills of the Santa Ynez Mountains and sitting on over 40 acres, the 6000 sq. ft. main residence, its 2-bedroom guesthouse and multi-room cabaña w...

Mar 92017

MOXI: Santa Barbara’s Newest Museum

Check out MOXI's powerfully playful exhibits and experiences. Discover, explore and play in the new 17,000 square foot museum called MOXI: The Wolf Museum of Exploration + Innovation. It features hands-on exhibits and experiences for families and c...

Mar 72017

4 Interior Design Tips On Bringing Your Home Out of Hibernation

Fight the winter blahs with interior design tips to banish winter gloom According to a story in Zillow.com, most people naturally gravitate toward sunny spots so it's important to follow these interior design tips focusing on keeping your home ch...

Feb 282017

Housing Market Off To A Prosperous Start In 2017

Existing home sales spiked to fastest seasonally adjusted annual rate. The housing market is off to a prosperous start this year as existing home sales spiked to the fastest seasonally adjusted annual rate (SAAR) in nearly a decade. NAR's existing-...

Feb 242017

Everything But The House Takes Estate Sales Nationwide

Online Estate Sales Made Simple and Profitable Everything But The House (known as EBTH by the site's fans) has been revamped with one goal in mind: to transform local estate sales into sophisticated, nationwide online auction experiences. The com...

Feb 212017

The World’s Most Luxurious Cookware

Can a set of pots and pans be sexy? Since the kitchen is the heart of the home, it's important to outfit yours with the most luxurious cookware available on the market today. But where do you start? I Googled the term "Luxurious Cookware" and this i...

Feb 172017

4 Ways to Show Your House Some Love

February is the month to show your love You have a one-of-a-kind relationship with your home so isn't it time to show your house some love? Luckily, the folks at Zillow have listed four ways to do just that! 1) Easy updates Whether or not you're p...

Feb 142017

Interior Design Trends: 5 Ways to Master Marble

News flash: There's a new interior design trend: marble. After all, home decorating in 2017 is all about the fusion of organic materials. By adding simplicity of form with the essential beauty of raw materials, the result is marble. The look is i...

Feb 92017

New Listing: Classic Peter Edwards Designed Mid-Century Modern

Love Mid-Century Modern? My new listing is a wonderful example of a classic Mid-Century Modern home. Designed by Santa Barbara architect Peter Edwards, this stunning single-level residence with its separate art studio is on the market for the first ...

Feb 72017

SOLD: Montecito Villa

Montecito Villa, a real show stopper Announcing another successful sale! This beautiful Montecito Villa, offered at $5,450,000, just sold. The lucky new owners will appreciate the approximately 6,000 sq. ft. Mediterranean-style home, embraced by lu...

Jan 272017

Is 2017 the Year of The Smart Home?

Consumers Embrace Smart Home Technology In a previous blog, I answered the question, "What is a Smart Home?" According to an article on CNBC, today's homebuyers are embracing high-tech home gadgets like never before; figuring out how to integrate th...

Jan 242017

2017 Renovation Trends

Comfort is key this year In a recent blog, I shared 15 stellar renovation and design apps. This post is going to take a look at the 2017 renovation trends so you can decide which apps to download. The renovation focus this year is less on what's m...

Jan 202017

A Place to Grow: Perfect for the Santa Barbara Lifestyle

Create Your Own Unique Backyard Retreat In previous blogs, I've discussed the growing popularity of She Sheds and Man Caves but what about different backyard retreats like art studios, meditation retreats, Zen dens, wine rooms or greenhouses? Amer...

Jan 172017

Four Not-To-Miss Adventures on Valentine’s Day in Santa Barbara

Take Your Valentine on a California Central Coast Date He or She Will Always Remember It's not too soon to check out all the special Valentine's Day Adventures in Santa Barbara. There's so much to do here that planning the perfect day for love can ...

Jan 122017

10 Tips to Prevent Burglary During an Open House

Don't open your doors to the public for showings until you take these extra precautions! If you're selling your Santa Barbara home and planning an open house in the near future, or if your house will be vacant during its sale, I have 10 tips desig...

Jan 102017

Negative Energy: 4 Ways to Kiss It Good-bye in Your Home

Creating new vibes in the New Year The New Year is the perfect time to rid your home of negative energy. Realty Times shares 4 ways to change it into positive vibes according to leading interior designers. 1) A fresh coat of paint Change the energ...

Jan 32017

5 New Year’s Resolutions for Santa Barbara Homeowners

So you've made your New Year's resolutions for 2017, but have you set goals for your Santa Barbara home? Here are 5 things your house wants you to consider: 1) Streamline your stuff Get organized in 2017 by streamlining your stuff. Homeowners acqui...

Dec 292016

A Fendi Dressing Room of Your Own

In a previous blog, I covered 2017 interior design trends in Santa Barbara, so when I saw the sumptuous "traveling" dressing room by Italian architect and designer Cristina Celestino for luxury fashion house Fendi, I had to bring it to my readers...

Dec 282016

Realtor.com® 2017 Housing Forecast: Five National Housing Trends

The 2017 housing market will see a year of slowing, yet moderate growth according to the realtor.com® 2017 housing forecast. Next year's predicted slowing price and sales growth, increasing interest rates and changing buyer demographics are setting...

Dec 202016

The Federal Reserve Hikes Interest Rates for a 2nd Time in a Decade

Interest rates: what does the hike mean for your wallet? By now you might know the Federal Reserve has raised interest rates by a quarter of a percentage point: the 2nd rate hike in about ten years. According to the Washington Post, the Fed's rate...

Dec 192016

6 Not-To-Miss Holiday Events in Santa Barbara

Heading to Santa Barbara for the holidays? Lucky you! Santa Barbara gets extra festive at this time of year with a wide array of Holiday Events. Here are some of my favorites: If you're looking for lights, you can book a ride on the Santa Bar...

Dec 162016

Interior Design Trends in Santa Barbara

By Dina Hanna As we ring in the New Year sipping champagne and watching the real estate market, interior designers are also bringing in new interior designs trends and insights into changing consumer trends. According to Trulia, interior designer...

Dec 132016

2017 California Housing Market Forecast

Home sales are leveling off. Prices are rising more slowly. And even mortgage rates near all-time lows. According to the California Association of Realtors 2017 California housing market forecast, the sunshine state will post modest gains next year ...

Dec 92016

What is Santa Barbara Doing About Climate Change?

In light of the fact that there's scientific consensus worldwide about the issue of climate change, Santa Barbara has created its own action plan through 2030. Most of us acknowledge by now that accelerated global climate change is occurring as a res...

Dec 62016

Another Happy Homebuyer in Montecito!

I am thrilled to announce another happy homebuyer. I just found my latest client their dream luxury home in Montecito. The estate at 740 Coyote Rd exudes old world charm with European flair. The entire property sits on almost one full acre of prime M...

Dec 12016

The Association for Women in Communications – Santa Barbara chapter

If you're moving to Santa Barbara, there are many organizations that will welcome you including the Association for Women in Communications (AWC-SB). The Santa Barbara Chapter is the premier organization for communication professionals in the Santa B...

Nov 292016

What Goes Into a Multi-Million Dollar Home Sale?

What goes on behind the scenes of a multi-million dollar home sale? According to a report in The Huffington Post, more homes than ever are being sold today at astronomical prices. Luxury home sales come with a specific list of challenges. While agent...

Nov 222016

The 64th Annual Holiday Parade in Downtown Santa Barbara

Hard to believe it's time for the annual Holiday Parade in Downtown Santa Barbara. This year's theme is "Holiday Under the Sea" and is sure to be spectacular with high-stepping marching bands, fabulous holiday-themed floats, spectacular performance g...

Nov 172016

Modern Vs Contemporary Style, Which is Your Favorite?

I just reviewed a video in the Wall Street Journal exploring modern vs contemporary styles. Modern is often used interchangeably with contemporary when it comes to architecture, furniture, and overall home style and design. Is there a difference betw...

Nov 152016

20 Tips For Hosting a Stress Free Thanksgiving

Hosting a stress free Thanksgiving can be a real challenge. According to an article in Food.com, this great American meal doesn't have to bring on anxiety and nerves. You can breeze through the big day while impressing your guests. All you need to do...

Nov 102016

Announcing The James Beard Celebrity Chef Tour in Santa Barbara

If you are a foodie then you won't want to miss Santa Barbara's first James Beard Celebrity Chef Tour Dinner on Monday, November 21st. The "Julia & James Dinner Celebration," honoring James Beard and Julia Child, will be hosted at Santa Barbara's...

Nov 82016

Clinton or Trump, Who Is the Best Bet for Luxury Real Estate?

Who do you think will be the best bet for luxury real estate, Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump? Americans don't have much information about either candidate's positions on the U.S. housing market even today as they head to the polls. I am neutral when...

Nov 32016

Whose Live Anyway? Offers Comic Post Election Relief in Santa Barbara

We may all be in need of a little comic post election relief here in Santa Barbara and luckily, Emmy-nominated TV show Whose Live Anyway?  has us covered, thanks to the wonderful UCSB Arts & Lectures organization. The hilarious improvised comedy...

Nov 12016

A Homeowner Checklist: 8 Important Things Homeowners Need to Know

I just read an article in PureWow listing 8 important things that should be on every homeowner checklist. 1) Where to Turn Off the Gas If there's a fire or other natural disaster like an earthquake in Santa Barbara, you'll need to turn off your gas...

Oct 262016

Santa Barbara Hauntings

Over the years, Santa Barbara hauntings have been a popular attraction, especially at this time of the year. I thought I'd share some with you for Halloween: Casa de la Guerra – The former residence of the 5th commandant of the Presidio de Sa...

Oct 252016

6 Tips for Selling a Home in Santa Barbara This Fall and Winter

Thinking of selling a home in Santa Barbara this fall or winter? I just read an article in RealtyTimes with 6 tips to ensure a successful sale during the coming months. When it comes time to sell luxury real estate in Montecito, Hope Ranch, Santa Ba...

Oct 212016

What is a Smart Home? What is Zoe? And What Are the Latest Smart Home Devices?

In a recent post, I essentially answered the question "What is a Smart Home?" by introducing, Zoe, an amazing hub that brings all your smart home technologies together. According to an article in Curbed.com, Zoe is being joined by more smart home ga...

Oct 182016

4 Steps to Protect Yourself From Identity Theft

I just read this article in Bankrate.com about Identity theft; with four important steps to protect yourself from being part of a hack. Bankrate.com is a leading aggregator of financial rate information, offering an unparalleled depth and breadth o...

Oct 112016

Homeowners: Now is The Time to Get Ready For Holiday Visitors!

You know that extended family and friends will be descending on your home this November and December so now is the time to get ready for holiday visitors. I just read this article in Realty Times with ideas and ways to get your home holiday-ready: ...

Oct 62016

SOLD: Spectacular Beachfront Ranch-Style Home

I just found the perfect home for my client: a spectacular beachfront ranch-style home in the Santa Barbara-adjacent town of Goleta. The home is located at 14515 Arroyo Quemada Lane and its main attraction is the breathtaking ocean and coastal views ...

Oct 42016

Record Sale: Iconic Montecito Estate Site

The sale of my iconic Montecito Estate site listing is making history as one of the highest-priced land sales in Santa Barbara County over the last 15 years. This major achievement in our current real estate down market came to fruition thanks to my ...

Sep 292016

Hiring a Contractor? Don’t Ignore These 10 Red Flags

When it comes to hiring a contractor, there are 10 red flags you don't want to ignore. Of course, renovating anything in your home can be a major hassle, but don't make matters worse by working with someone who is not professional. Here are some thin...

Sep 272016

9 Ways To Improve Santa Barbara

I just read an article in Curbed.com listing 101 ways you can improve your neighborhood and couldn't resist sharing 9 ways to improve Santa Barbara. Even those of us who live in picture perfect Santa Barbara can take advantage of these ideas and make...

Sep 222016

Montecito Home Makes Forbes List of America’s Most Expensive Homes

The magnificent Rancho San Carlos estate n Montecito has made the Forbes list of America's most expensive homes on the market right now. The property, located at 2500 East Valley Road, is one of 26 homes on the market listed for more than $75 milli...

Sep 202016

15 Stellar Renovation and Design Apps

If you are embarking on home renovation and design projects, don't start until you check out this list of stellar apps created specifically to assist you with every part of the process. The editors at Curbed.com have rounded up 15 standouts for desig...

Sep 152016

Introducing the Wildling Museum of Art and Nature

Just 45 minutes from downtown Santa Barbara, in the picturesque village of Solvang, sits The Wildling Museum of Art and Nature, founded in 1997 by Santa Barbara artist Patti Jacquemain. She felt that a museum showcasing the beautiful art of wildernes...

Sep 132016

Add Some Fun Into Your Home Décor in 8 Steps

It's easy to create a home that makes you smile: just add some fun elements into your home décor. Realty Times recommends you stop being so serious when it comes to decorating your home. Instead, have fun! Here are a few ideas to get started: We...

Sep 82016

Sherwin Williams 2017 Color of The Year: Poised Taupe

"It's like gray and brown had a baby," is how Sue Wadden, the director of color marketing for Sherwin-Williams explains the 2017 color of the year: Poised Taupe. She was recently on the Today Show sharing how to get a head start on next year's trends...

Sep 62016

Another Happy Client Enjoying a Mediterranean Style Paradise

Announcing another happy client thanks to a successful new home search! This beautiful Mediterranean Style Paradise, offered at $ $2,450,000, turned out to be the dream home of one of my clients. The property is ideally situated for amazing views of ...

Sep 12016

Hiring a Realtor®? Consider Their Knowledge

If you are currently selling your property or planning on listing it, you need to consider hiring a Realtor®. Your quest for a qualified professional should include making sure he or she knows what's going on in the market and keeps informed on the ...

Aug 302016

Home Renovations: Top 7 That Will Pay You Back

Think Outdoor Space Home renovations can significantly raise a home's value, which can mean more money when it comes time to sell. Here are the 7 best fix-ups, both big and small, that will pay you back: 1) Front Door We've all heard about the imp...

Aug 252016

Buying Real Estate: Is This the Best Time in History to Invest?

I just read an op-ed piece in MarketWatch that says if you're considering buying real estate, this is the best time in history to do so. While plenty of pundits are sounding the real estate alarm bells for a variety of reasons, editor Jeff Reeves thi...

Aug 232016

Santa Barbara Museum of Art: Celebrating 75 Years

When one searches the internet for Santa Barbara Museum of Art, the first things one notices are its well-deserved high ratings. There are surprises as well, such as the headline "Greek and Roman Sculpture from the Santa Barbara Museum of Art" appear...

Aug 192016

The Santa Barbara Bowl: A Local Shrine to the Performing Arts

The Santa Barbara Bowl, a 4,562-seat amphitheater, is historic in setting and at the forefront of music industry. The beautiful outdoor concert venue was originally built for the Santa Barbara community's Fiesta pageant and now hosts some of the bigg...

Aug 182016

Like to shop? Check out Santa Barbara’s Historic State Street Plaza

If you like to shop, you'll love Santa Barbara's historic State Street Plaza. Known as one of America's most pedestrian-friendly downtowns, it provides an amazing diversity of choices. The quaint shop-lined streets are a favorite with visitors ...

Aug 112016

Top Real Estate Agents in America

I am honored to be listed in Real Estate Executive Magazine's list of the top Real Estate Agents in Southern California. The magazine compiled the most comprehensive list of the Nation's Top Real Estate Agents as ranked by their total yearly real est...

Aug 92016

10 Home Items to Buy in Big Box Stores

In an earlier blog on the shopping habits of the wealthy, I uncovered that big box stores are among the places millionaires like to shop. Here are 10 reasons why: New trends Big box stores are a great place to adopt a new trend without a big s...

Aug 42016

Eight of the Richest Athletes Competing in the 2016 Olympic Games

As you probably know, the 2016 Olympic Games are set to begin this Friday in Rio de Janeiro. That makes this the perfect time to take a look at eight of the richest athletes competing this year. Dominating the list below, the game of tennis. 1...

Aug 22016

Car Free Santa Barbara

Car free Santa Barbara: one of the many things I love about living here is you can walk everywhere. Apparently, I am not alone. Santa Barbara has been designated a Gold-Level Community by Walk Friendly Communities. A short walk from the waterfront ...

Jul 282016

Santa Barbara Real Estate Market Trends

It's time to take a look at the market update for Santa Barbara County for the second quarter of 2016. Good news: Santa Barbara real estate market trends indicate real estate prices in Santa Barbara County increased by 2%. That represents the fifth s...

Jul 212016

Travel On the Upswing at Santa Barbara Airport

Santa Barbara Airport (SBA), the gateway to the American Rivera, is now serving seven direct service destinations: Dallas, Denver, Los Angeles, Phoenix, Portland, San Francisco and Seattle, with a total of 21 daily departures. Why? Because more and...

Jul 192016

Is Pokémon Go Transforming Santa Barbara?

According to an article in curbed.com, Pokémon Go is transforming millions of people's relationships to where they live, including those who reside right here in Santa Barbara. How? By getting thousands of young people out and about, checking out ou...

Jul 142016

Outdoor Spaces in Luxury Homes: Builders Follow the Santa Barbara Example

Four trends that luxury homeowners across the country are implementing across the country to adapt the California dream of outdoor living I just read an article in the Wall Street Journal about outdoor spaces in luxury homes becoming bigger, more e...

Jul 132016

New Listing: Cape Cod-Style Oceanfront Estate

This magnificent Cape Cod-style oceanfront estate on Sand Point Road in Carpinteria is located in the prestigious gated Sand Point beach colony near Montecito, CA. The stunning property, that sits on nearly 1.5 acres, 130 ft of which are beach front...

Jul 72016

Homeowners: Here are 7 Things You Should Do Once a Year

I just saw this list of 7 things homeowners should do once a year on PureWow, an online magazine that covers the breadth of women's lifestyle: fashion, beauty, home, arts and culture, money, tech, food and travel. While we've covered this topic in ...

Jul 52016

California #3 Among States with the Best Economies

According to WalletHub's new ranking of state economic performance, California comes in third in a list of states with the best economies. The personal finance site came up with the list by comparing each of the 50 states, plus the District of Col...

Jun 302016

What to Get Your Husband for His Birthday: A Man Cave!

Skip the greeting card this year and give your husband what he really wants for his birthday: a man cave. Not to be confused by the She Shed, these special rooms, just for men, have become so popular there's even a website devoted exclusively to them...

Jun 282016

Brexit: 7 Ways You Might Profit

By now we all know what Brexit means: it marks the day that the British electorate voted to leave the European Union, defying prognosticators and the establishment. An EU recession has likely been triggered. The U.S. Fed is rumored to be considering ...

Jun 232016

7 Tips for Keeping Kids Safe Around Pools and Spas

A couple summers ago, I wrote a blog post outlining several safety tips for pool owners. Because many homes in Santa Barbara have beautiful pools and spas, I thought it would be prudent to add a few more and remind those of us with those wonderful ou...

Jun 212016

New Listing: Ocean View Montecito Condo

If you are a beach lover, then you won't want to miss this opportunity to own a beautiful Ocean View Montecito Condo. Fall asleep every night to the sounds of crashing waves, wake up to an amazing view of the Pacific Ocean and enjoy the remarkable co...

Jun 162016

Discover Santa Barbara From The Window of A Helicopter

Would you like to discover Santa Barbara from the window of a helicopter? >Santa Barbara Helicopter Tours provides an adventure of a lifetime with the company's sightseeing helicopter tour operation. You'll see why the area is known as the jewel of...

Jun 142016

The Top 5 Landscaping Tips for Homeowners

The right landscaping can really make a difference whether you are considering putting your home on the market or doing some entertaining this summer. Besides boosting the look of your home before it hits the market, landscaping can be key in creatin...

Jun 92016

The Key To Business Success: Love What You Do

I know the key to business success because I live it every day. I love what I do: work in luxury real estate and appreciate my discerning clients, especially when they write a testimonial like this one from a buyer I recently represented: "Cristal...

Jun 72016

Castles for Sale: Live Like a King in the United States

There are castles for sale right here on this side of "the Pond," so you don't have to move to Europe to live like a king, according to Realty Times. The U.S. real estate market has no shortage of grand estates up for purchase. Here are three example...

Jun 12016

Dog Owners: Don’t Get Bitten by a Homeowners Insurance Company

You love your dog, but don't expect your homeowners' insurance company to share the feeling. Some insurance companies will not insure homeowners who own certain breeds of dogs categorized as dangerous, such as pit bulls. Others decide on a case-by-ca...

May 262016

Have You Experienced The Santa Barbara Public Market Yet?

The Santa Barbara Public Market, an urban marketplace, is home to a diverse collective of merchants all under one roof. The multi-vendor market opened two years ago at 38 W. Victoria St, offering locally and regionally sourced food and wine. Have yo...

May 242016

Memorial Day Weekend in Santa Barbara

There'll be plenty to do Memorial Day weekend in Santa Barbara. According to the AAA, travel, this Memorial Day weekend is expected to be one of the busiest on record with an estimated 38 million Americans on the road. That's the largest number of tr...

May 192016

Exciting events at the Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History

In a previous blog, I introduced the Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History. This special museum is the site and center of quite a few wonderful events throughout the year. Here are 3: Santa Barbara Wine Festival This event – happening on June 2...

May 172016

Around The World Ideas for Santa Barbara Gardens

Our amazing Mediterranean climate is one of the many things that make living in Santa Barbara desirable and Santa Barbara gardens magical. So when I saw Realtor.com's story regarding outdoor décor ideas from around the world, I had to share i...

May 132016

New Listing: Mediterranean-style Montecito Villa

Imagine driving through the gates of this stunning 6,000 sq. ft. Mediterranean-style Montecito Villa and entering a world of tranquil ambiance and relaxed luxury. You are immediately embraced by lush landscaping framing the amazing architecture. Lo...

May 102016

A Standout Among Montecito Villas

While I just blogged about two new listings in Montecito, I listed another property in the coveted community: a beautiful Montecito Villa. This standout among Montecito villas is absolutely stunning. It's located at 745 Lilac Dr. and offered at $5,...

May 82016

Montecito Properties for Sale or Lease

Montecito properties are among the most coveted in California. If you're looking to buy or lease the perfect Montecito home, you're in luck because I have just listed a luxury 4-bedroom home for sale, and a pristine Montecito Del Mar condo for lease....

May 32016

Sea Kayaking in Santa Barbara: Try It and Love It!

As I explained in a previous blog, there is so much to do here in sunny Santa Barbara, including one of my all-time favorite activities: sea kayaking. For many outdoor adventurers, sea kayaking is an entirely new experience, often leaving them unsure...

Apr 282016

Luxury Home Décor: Posh, Plush and Luxe Items For Your Home

I just read an article in Realty Times regarding luxury home décor featuring the poshest, most plush, and luxe items for your home. The list had me salivating: Dolce & Gabbana First up, a Dolce & Gabbana refrigerator. The famed fashion...

Apr 272016

Is California a Financially Savvy State?

According to professionals at Wallet Hub, a personal finance resource on the web, California is one of the most financially savvy states in the nation. In fact, California came in #12 on the list of 2016's Most & Least Financially Savvy States. N...

Apr 212016

3 Reasons to Visit The American Riviera This May

Visit California features Santa Barbara in their latest newsletter offering three reasons to visit the American Riviera in the month of May. Check them out: As I covered in a previous blog, this year's wildflower displays in Santa Barbara County...

Apr 192016

Renovating a Home: Priorities of the Affluent Homeowner

Montecito estate owners who are considering renovating a home might find this article in the Wall Street Journal interesting. According to a recent survey of 1,258 homeowners by LightStream, the online lending division of SunTrust Bank, about 62% ...

Apr 142016

Santa Barbara Pest Control

This year's El Nino may not have brought the record rains that were expected in Santa Barbara County, but experts say it is expected to wreak havoc with a huge surge in insects. "When conditions are warm and wet, many pests begin to swarm in searc...

Apr 122016

Enjoying Santa Barbara County Wildflowers

You can't miss the brilliant display Santa Barbara County wildflowers this time of year. Showy California poppies, coral and ruby splashes of Indian pinks, butter-yellow clusters of soft-leaved paintbrush and more wildflower varieties are blooming ...

Apr 52016

Aging Gracefully in Your Home: New Architecture Designed to Help

I just read an article in Curbed.com about new architecture designed to help homeowners age gracefully. The article takes a look at the philosophy and work of architect Matthias Hollwich who's new book, New Aging, offers a radical blueprint for ret...

Mar 312016

The Smart Home Hub of the Future is Here: Meet Zoe

I just read an article in Curbed.com regarding ZOE, a new crowdfunded device by Protonet designed to offer data security like no other in today's increasingly crowded smart home market. This new smart home hub offers homeowners a safe and elegant w...

Mar 302016

New Listing: Iconic Montecito Estate Site

If you are looking for an iconic Montecito Estate site with amazing 360 degree breathtaking views, then take a look at my new listing at 570 Toro Canyon Park Rd. This slice of pastoral paradise features approximately 88 acres on two parcels, and is q...

Mar 252016

The Strength of the Dollar is Nothing to Worry About

I just read an article in Bloomberg Business suggesting the Fed stop worrying about the strength of the dollar. In fact, a new report from Goldman Sachs Group Inc. suggests our U.S. currency poses little threat to the Fed's inflation goals. This new...

Mar 172016

How to Store Your Off Season Clothes

Even here in sunny Santa Barbara, we need to store our off season clothes when the season changes. There's an art to storing your clothes. I found an article in Houzz that offers excellent suggestions: 1) Choose a storage space that's clean and st...

Mar 152016

Housing Statistics That Will Make You Smile

I just read the latest housing statistics about home sales on a national basis in Realtor.com. A new report out by the National Association of Realtors® says the number of houses across the nation that have sold but have not closed yet dipped 2.5%,...

Mar 102016

New Trend: Luxury Storage Units  

  Move over traditional industrial park-style storage unit facilities and make way for luxury storage units. According to The Wall Street Journal, basic storage units are being replaced by customized spaces referred to as luxury storage uni...

Mar 72016

NOW is the perfect time to list your Santa Barbara Home

Sellers ask me all the time, "When is the best time to list my Santa Barbara home?" That's no surprise since timing can significantly influence the final sale price of a home, and how quickly a home will sell, according to new data from Zillow®. The...

Feb 252016

University of California Santa Barbara Presents National Geographic Live

On the Trail of Big Cats: Tigers, Cougars, and Snow Leopards with Wildlife Photographer Steve Winter, Part of the National Geographic Live Series Go around the world in search of big cats with award-winning photographer Steve Winter without leavin...

Feb 232016

How to Get Your Santa Barbara Home Ready For Spring

Bring spring indoors with these 5 tips Is your Santa Barbara home ready for spring? It may seem like spring and summer are all year long in Santa Barbara, known for its perfect Mediterranean climate and picturesque coastline, but we still need to ...

Feb 182016

Midcentury Fan? Get Design Ideas From Stylish Film Sets

Midcentury continues to be a hot design style Are you a fan of Midcentury Design? If the answer is yes, Curbed.com just published a list of 13 movies sets featuring midcentury architects and design icons that will give you inspiration and ideas t...

Feb 172016

Buyers Find Their Santa Barbara Dream Homes

I am happy to celebrate with two ecstatic buyers who are moving into their Santa Barbara dream homes. For one client, I found a beautiful estate with amazing views offering resort style living in Montecito's prestigious Pepper Hill neighborhood. Lo...

Feb 112016

Celebration: The Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History

Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History Celebrates 100 Years The warm winter weather we're experiencing right now is the perfect time to appreciate some air conditioning and culture at the Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History. The much-loved ...

Feb 92016

A Remote California Ranch Hits the Market: The Lonesome Ranch

The Lonesome Ranch Has It's Own Gold Mines and Helipad Just a little over an hour helicopter ride from Santa Barbara sits the Lonesome Ranch, an amazing 190-acre property that just hit the market for $2.5 million. Littered with evidence of its his...

Feb 22016

Bye Bye Open Kitchen: Closed Kitchens Make a Comeback

Open kitchen design vs closed, you decide For years the open kitchen has been touted as the best kind; something every house should have, but today, closed kitchens are making a comeback. This is just another example of how everything comes full ci...

Jan 262016

Culture Thrives Along the American Riviera

Santa Barbara is known for its perfect Mediterranean climate and picturesque coastline, but did you know that culture thrives along the American Riviera? Take the Architectural Foundation of Santa Barbara, for example. With the goal of enhancin...

Jan 222016

The Luxury Home Market Update

In a recent blog, I shared with you the latest luxury real estate stats for Santa Barbara and Montecito. Today, I am going to look at the luxury home market nationally. The Institute for Luxury Home Marketing (ILHM) publishes the ILHM Luxury Homes...

Jan 192016

Is Santa Barbara Ready for El Niño?

Santa Barbara is set to weather the storm In a recent blog, I asked, "Are you ready for El Niño?" While the impact of this winter's El Niño forecast remains uncertain, many of us in Santa Barbara are ready for whatever comes our way. Some resident...

Jan 182016

2016 Trend: A Luxury At-Home Spa

If you are like me with fitness and health topping your list in 2016, then you won't want to miss this blog regarding building your own luxury at-home spa. Whether you're looking to hydrate, treat or just chill out, check out these 7 steps to bri...

Jan 122016

Infamous Playboy Mansion for Sale

  Just a couple hours south of Montecito sits the infamous Playboy Mansion that is on the market for more than $200 million. According to TMZ, the Holmby Hills estate, designed by Arthur Kelly in 1927, sits on 6 acres, an entire lot of...

Jan 112016

2015: The Year In Real Estate in Montecito and Santa Barbara

Last year was stellar for the real estate industry here in Montecito and Santa Barbara County In general, last year was not so surprising since we all expected the real estate market would continue to recover in 2015. The first half of the year wa...

Jan 62016

It’s Time To Tackle Your January Home To-Do List

Follow these 8 steps to lighten up, cozy up and get organized in 2016 I always like to make a fresh start in the New Year by following my January home to-do list. This year, I am sharing how I lighten up, cozy up and get organized: 1) Refresh y...

Dec 302015

Where is the best place in Santa Barbara to ring in the New Year?

How about spending New Year's Eve at Home? With New Year's Eve right around the corner, the question on many of our stressed-out minds is: Where should we go in Santa Barbara to ring in the New Year? According to Realtor.com, the hottest, hippes...

Dec 292015

2016 Interior Design Trends

Are you wondering about the 2016 interior design trends? According to a story in Realty Times, the interior design trends for 2016 call for more inspiration and less direction. Leading interior designers say to expect an even wider range of options...

Dec 232015

It’s Christmas Once Again in Santa Barbara

Song Celebrates the Meaning of Christmas Santa Barbara is one of the few cities that can boast its own Christmas song: "It's Christmas Once Again in Santa Barbara." The classic song was originally written for a special Holiday CD featuring Christmas...

Dec 222015

Congratulations Montecito condo seller and Santa Barbara homebuyer

Another happy Montecito condo seller and an ecstatic Santa Barbara homebuyer have been added to my growing list of delighted clients! My listing, a striking Montecito beachside condo in Bonnymede, is now pending, and I represented the buyer who just...

Dec 182015

Christmas lights can bring down planes?

A trendy, high-tech holiday lighting decoration may be flying off the store shelves but can these Christmas lights bring down planes? According to a story in Realtor.com, the Federal Aviation Administration and the FBI say, "Yes," these new lights co...

Dec 152015

Surprising findings of the Homeowner Generation Gap

It's not surprising to learn there is a generation gap when it comes to what Millennials and Baby Boomers think of their homes. But the details of that generation gap might astonish you. Nest, a company Google recently acquired for $3.2 billion, just...

Dec 102015

Pantone’s Colors of the Year 2016

These colors speak to the balanced, Santa Barbara Lifestyle. Pantone's Colors of the Year for 2016 have been officially announced: Rose Quartz and Serenity, otherwise known as baby pink and baby blue. It's the first time the color trend forecaster...

Dec 82015

Holiday Shopping: 7 Meaningful gifts that give back

Make a difference and complete your holiday shopping! If you're like me and you haven't yet finished your holiday shopping, you might want to consider purchasing these meaningful gifts that give back: California-based ONE HOPE Wine: Every case...

Dec 42015

Foreign Real Estate Purchases: Chinese Have Overtaken Canadians

  There's a major change in foreign real estate purchases According to an article in the Wall Street Journal, there's a major change in foreign real estate purchases. For the first time in history, Chinese have overtaken Canadians as the...

Dec 22015

10 Tips on Creating a Chic Home Office

Don't settle for a boring home office A home office doesn't have to be a boring room, according to fashion blogger Christine Andrew of Hello Fashion and POPSUGAR. Here are her 10 tips on creating a chic home office: Keep it organized Get ...

Nov 252015

10 Tips for Having a Calm, Heartfelt Thanksgiving

We all must learn to embrace imperfection for a calm, heartfelt Thanksgiving. These 10 tips should take the stress out of your Thanksgiving. Now that's something to be grateful for. 1. Let go of perfection. Forget about those expectations that a...

Nov 242015

Best Online Black Friday Deals For Your Home

As you can see from this infographic, more people are shopping online these days, even on Black Friday. Retailers are noticing the trend. In fact, this year the best deals for your home can be found online. Here are six sites to check out in 2015 f...

Nov 202015

5 tips to true health and wellness

I just read an article about the path to true health and wellness in the Huffington Post that really caught my attention. It began with this sage advice: "Life is not meant to be a struggle." We've all heard those words but how does one live ...

Nov 182015

Santa Barbara Real Estate: 2 More Sales for Realtor Cristal Clarke

Guest post by Susan Hartzler The Santa Barbara real estate market is hot! At least that's what seems obvious judging from the continued success of Cristal Clarke, one of the region's most respected Realtors and consistently rated in the top 1% of S...

Nov 122015

New trend: High-end home communities built around nature preserves

According to the Wall Street Journal, a growing number of high-end home communities are being built around large nature preserves. Why, you ask? Because today's developers see nature preserves as relatively low-cost amenities that are highly valued b...

Nov 102015

Creating the cat friendly home

In a recent blog, I shared intel on how developers are courting pet loving home hunters. Being the dog lover that I am, the blog covered ideas for canines but did not include info on creating the cat friendly home. Today, I am going to rectify that s...

Nov 62015

New Private Listing: A Spectacular 88-acre Montecito View Property

This spectacular Montecito view property is a new private listing that will soon become part of my portfolio. It's at the eastern end of Montecito and is being offered for the first time in many years. A rare find, it provides breathtaking ocean, m...

Nov 32015

8 Estate Planning Essentials

Estate planning: it's a topic no one wants to think about. Yet it's extremely important. If the worst should happen and you don't have your financial affairs in order, you will be leaving it up to your loved ones to decide what to do, or worse, the c...

Oct 292015

FEMA Advises California Residents to Purchase Flood Insurance

Last week I asked are you ready for El Niño and shared information on how homeowners can prepare for the drenching rains anticipated to begin in a little over a month from now. Over the weekend, the Los Angeles Times published an article stating th...

Oct 272015

Teaching children financial responsibility: Start with Halloween!

It may sound a little strange but Halloween might be one of the best holidays for teaching children financial responsibility. Leading finance experts were asked to share their financial wisdom and strategies surrounding Halloween and the answers were...

Oct 252015

Dog vs Robot for Home Security

In a recent blog, I showcased leading home security systems asking which one is right for you. Today, I am going to look at the controversy over dog vs robot for home security. The topic came to my attention when I found out about a robot guard do...

Oct 212015

Are you ready for El Nino?

Members from the National Weather Service, Cal Fire, State Office of Emergency and many more gathered in Santa Barbara recently to warn residents that now is the time to get prepared for the coming El Nino. Many experts believe that if the forecast E...

Oct 152015

How to Create Your Own 5-Star Guest Room

Creating your own 5-Star guest room should be on the top of your to-do list right now. Why? As autumn heads toward the busy holiday season, now is the time to prepare for houseguests. We all love spending a little more time with loved ones over the h...

Oct 142015

Top 5 Video Games for Design Nerds

If you are a child at heart and interested in architecture, there are several video games you need to check out. Created to excite players through human curiosity, creativity, and puzzles, some even allow you to build monuments and towns, while other...

Oct 82015

Tree Trimming: 10 questions to ask before hiring a professional tree trimmer

If you are a homeowner, it's that time of year for tree trimming. When hiring a professional tree trimmer, you'll want to get your money's worth, protect your investment and avoid liability and upset neighbors. Here are 10 questions to ask: Will...

Oct 62015

She Sheds in Santa Barbara

By now we've all heard about the Man Cave but have you met the She Shed yet? A She Shed is a backyard haven for busy women seeking a quiet reprieve from the world. In Santa Barbara, there's a local home designer specializing in building quality She S...

Oct 12015

Designing a home around your art collection

An art collection and a home are two of the top hard-asset classes people are investing in today. Most homeowners live with their art collections. Others build their homes around it. The Wall Street Journal reports that some serious art enthusi...

Sep 282015

Frank Lloyd Wright in Santa Barbara

Besides the amazing Frank Lloyd Wright Structures in Los Angeles and Frank Lloyd Wright Structures in San Francisco, the world-renown architect built several other structures in California, including right here in Santa Barbara. Take the George C....

Sep 242015

What is the Hyperloop?

Have you heard about the Hyperloop, designed to transport people between Los Angeles and San Francisco in about half an hour? This entirely new conceptual high-speed transportation system put forward by entrepreneur and Tesla founder Elon Musk,...

Sep 222015

Mediterranean-Inspired Living Spaces in Santa Barbara

Mediterranean-inspired living spaces can be found in abundance here in Santa Barbara and the surrounding upscale communities. In fact, the lovely Mediterranean has long influenced many things in the U.S., especially here where we are blessed with war...

Sep 172015

A Charmer on Santa Barbara Mesa

My new listing is a wonderful example of the coveted indoor-outdoor lifestyle. This Santa Barbara Mesa charmer exudes the relaxed yet sophisticated ambiance of the world-renowned "American Riviera." A host of multi-pane windows throughout make the ...

Sep 162015

Homeowners are spending like it’s 2006!

I love sharing good news and I am happy to report that homeowners are spending like it's 2006; before the housing bubble hit. Just where are they shopping? In a recent blog, I shared information about the shopping habits of wealthy consumers, incl...

Sep 112015

The Art of Burning Man

No matter what you think about the annual Burning Man festival, it's arguably one of the biggest yearly collections of pop-up architecture on the planet. Hence, "the art of Burning Man." This year, an estimated 70,000 people descended on the pla...

Sep 92015

Would You Consider Adding a Slide inside Your Home?

According to a story in the Wall Street Journal, homeowners today are integrating a playground staple inside their houses by adding a slide. Would you consider adding a slide inside your home? According to the article, although building a slide ...

Sep 22015

Home Security Systems: which one is right for you?

We are all aware of the importance of home security systems these days. The rise in the number of blue-collar crimes including home invasion robberies, burglary, vandalism and so on can make any homeowner cringe. But that doesn't have to be the case....

Sep 12015

How to Choose a Front Door

You only get one chance to make a first impression, so how to choose a front door for your home is an extremely important consideration. After all, the front door is the most prominent feature of a house. Enhancing your entry door can boost your curb...

Aug 282015

Target rolls out healthy in store cafes

In a recent blog, I shared with you some surprising information about the shopping habits of wealthy consumers, uncovering where millionaires love to shop: at discount chain stores like Target. That info was the result of a new survey from a wealth m...

Aug 262015

Consumer Trends: Reuse, Remake and Refrain

We've all heard by now about the consumer trends to reuse, remake and refrain where companies try to extend the usefulness of a product, rather than merely shrink its environmental footprint. Retailers are selling goods and products reworked from dis...

Aug 212015

Shopping Habits of Wealthy Consumers: Where do they shop? What do They Buy?

You might be surprised by the shopping habits of wealthy consumers. According to MediaPost, the one source for advertising and marketing professionals looking for the most comprehensive industry coverage, millionaires love Costco, Home Depot and Lo...

Aug 182015

Tips on Incorporating Your Travels Into Your Home Decor

Home décor is a topic I frequently blog about. Not long ago, I blogged about adding some French Flair to your home. Before that, I shared info on embracing your own personal style into your home décor. Today, I'm going to share tips on incorporatin...

Aug 132015

NEW LISTING: Carpinteria Beach Condo

I am happy to report that August is turning into another stellar month in the real estate industry here in Santa Barbara. My new listing, a lovely Carpinteria Beach Condo, is an Ideal investment opportunity or primary residence. Located close to the ...

Aug 112015

Check Out This Billionaire Bunker and Doomsday Escape

I just read this article in Forbes Magazine about an amazing five-star underground billionaire bunker and doomsday escape. It is quite an elaborate underground survival complex, similar to an underground cruise ship for the elite. Created by Vivos f...

Aug 62015

Spectacular swimming pools around the world

I just took a refreshing tour of spectacular swimming pools from Sydney to Moscow in the latest issue of Houzz. These 15 swimming pools with dream views are amazing, with breathtaking views, inspiring design, and gorgeous landscapes. Here are two of ...

Aug 42015

Why You Need A Revocable Trust

If you don't already have one, please consider preparing a revocable trust. My clients return to me all the time asking to list a property that was left to them by a loved one that has deceased. In working with these customers, I have found that the ...

Jul 312015

Is leasing a home a good choice for you?

Depending on your personal circumstances, leasing a home may be a better option for you than buying one. Consistently rated in the top 1% of Sotheby's International Realty® agents nationwide for more than 25 years, Cristal Clarke not only speciali...

Jul 282015

Fantastical Floating Homes: What do you think of them?

Designers and property developers today are taking their projects to sea and creating fantastical floating homes. We're not referring to your average houseboat here; in fac,t these aquatic dream homes are much more than the typical luxury yacht. Som...

Jul 212015

Beware of hackers and real estate wire transfers

Homebuyers need to beware of hackers and real estate wire transfers. In this frightening scenario, hackers illegally get the email accounts of real estate agents and brokers, which is not so surprising considering places like Target, Sony, and the De...

Jul 162015

Backyard pools are going to the dogs

It's not that surprising that today's backyard pools are going to the dogs but a pool built especially for the canine members of the family? Many dogs are ushering in the dog days of summer in style, playing in their own pool . For many families, ...

Jul 142015

Creating a pet friendly kitchen

Creating a pet-friendly kitchen is a new trend. It's hard to believe that not so long ago, most dogs lived outside in doghouses and a pet-friendly kitchen was not even a consideration. Today, however, homeowners are looking for stylish ways to accomm...

Jul 92015

3d Printing, a Limitless New Frontier in Home Décor

Is 3d printing a limitless new frontier in home décor? The answer to that question is "Yes," according to a story in the Wall Street Journal, "3-D Printing Adds Depth to Home Décor." I've dedicated many blog posts to the topic of interior de...

Jul 72015

Mosquito Repellent Plants: Relief in Our Santa Barbara Gardens

Summertime in Santa Barbara means outdoor living at its finest. Even in paradise, however, there can be challenges and pesky pests like the dreaded mosquito. While health officials urge people to avoid outdoor activity in the dusk-to-dawn period...

Jul 42015

Unique symbols of freedom

Unique symbols of freedom come to mind as we celebrate the 4th of July holiday. I just learned about one historic symbol that really surprised me: the bulldog. Believe it or not, English bulldogs found their way into the hearts of the U.S. Marine...

Jun 302015

4th of July Celebrations in Santa Barbara

There are plenty of 4th of July celebrations in Santa Barbara. I am happy to report that the City of Santa Barbara is bringing back it's traditional 4th of July celebration this year. Held at the beautiful Santa Barbara waterfront along West Beach, r...

Jun 262015

Scarface House in Montecito: Selling Price Reduced Significantly

In a previous blog, "House From Scarface Hits the Market In Montecito," I shared how $35M could buy you one of the area's most celebrated residences: the Scarface house. Now you can purchase the mansion, one of only five houses designed by renowned A...

Jun 232015

How developers are courting pet loving home hunters

My clients and friends know that I am a real dog lover so it's not surprising that a recent Wall Street Journal article about how developers are courting pet loving home hunters caught my attention. "Where a Dog's Life Means Luxury Living, Develop...

Jun 182015

How to embrace your own personal interior design style in your home

I've dedicated a lot of blogs to your home's interior design style: from "Decorating Your Home Like A Hollywood Stylist," to "6 Top Trends in Today's Master Baths." Today I ask: Are you losing yourself for the sake of being on trend? According to a ...

Jun 162015

Mystery Solved! The Key to the Mega-Blue Santa Barbara Ocean

If you live in Santa Barbara County, you probably noticed the striking turquoise color of the Pacific Ocean last week. The brilliant color is not only amazing to behold, but it is also a delight to UC Santa Barbara researchers who say the mystery b...

Jun 112015

Experts say interest rates and wages will rise

Experts say interest rates will rise as the Federal Reserve eases accommodations it made to boost the weak economy. That's the bad news. Now the good news: wages are likely to increase, too. And, statistics show that new household formations are on t...

Jun 92015

My new listing: Condo at the Santa Barbara Polo Club

My new listing at the Santa Barbara Polo Club is something that is rarely available in Santa Barbara. It's the perfect place to sit back and enjoy the play from your own private balcony. After the game is over, the new owners will appreciate relaxing...

Jun 42015

Tips for a Stress Free Move for Every Member of the Family

Moving can be tough on every member of the family but it doesn't have to turn into fights and arguments. Take heed of my 6 tried and true tips for a stress-free move with kids: 1: Uncover family deal breakers Before you even begin your home hunti...

Jun 22015

Dwell Magazine Partners With Sotheby’s International Realty®

In a previous blog, I shared how "Strategic Real Estate Marketing Sold This Montecito Ocean View Home" and today I am happy to report a new marketing avenue for Sotheby's International Realty® listings: Dwell Magazine. The exclusive media partners...

May 292015

Top 10 real estate trends sparked by the millennial generation

The millennial generation is changing the landscape of the real estate world, from home buying to design. Loosely defined as those born between the early 1980s and early 2000s, Millennials number between 80 million and 90 million. It's the largest gr...

May 262015

A San Ysidro-style farmhouse in Montecito in Sotheby’s International Reality’s Significant Sales Report

Guess who's Montecito estate listing made the Sotheby's International Realty Significant Sales report, which features top sales from around the world? I am very proud that I am referring to one of my listings, which made the report for April. My "s...

May 232015

SOLD! The Perfect Beachfront Home in Carpinteria

The perfect beachfront home I found for one of my amazing clients last month has closed escrow. Designed by noted architect Robert Senn in 2008, this property is set on beautiful Padaro Beach and includes 105 feet of beachfront in Carpinteria, Calif...

May 212015

Keep your office cool with this Futuristic French Desk

In a previous blog, I looked at "Extreme Sustainable Living in Austria" and today I am going to show you how to keep your office cool with a futuristic French desk. Leave it to the French to design a crucial piece of furniture so innovative that it c...

May 192015

The ultimate Father’s Day Gift

Father's Day is right around the corner, June 21, 2015. This year, don't give the man that raised you the same boring Father's Day Gift. Check out this article in TheRichest.com featuring "5 Expensive Father's Day Gifts Every Dad Wants." Of the many...

May 152015

Another Montecito dream home found! And tips on Finding Yours.

I just found the perfect dream home for one of my clients; a spectacular Montecito remodel completed last June. Situated at the end of a pleasant cul-de-sac, this home has amazing ocean views and expensive mountain views, perfect for this new family....

May 122015

Montecito Mediterranean-Style Luxury Retreat Sells above Asking Price

Announcing another successful sale! This beautiful Montecito Mediterranean Style Compound, a true luxury retreat offered at $2,950,000, was sold for more than the asking price. The notable sale is not surprising considering the property is convenient...

May 72015

How the Super-Rich Spend Their Money

I recently read this article on CNN Money, "How the Super-Rich Spend," and just had to share the highlights with you. Let's start by looking one of Santa Barbara's most famous residents, Oprah, who owns an $85 million mansion on a 42-acre estate in M...

May 52015

4 Tips for Preparing Your Home for Summer

I can't believe that summer is on the horizon already. It's my favorite time of year; filled with fresh air, sunshine and breezy relaxation. Before it hits full force (and I've heard this year is sure to be a hot one), I want to offer a few tips for ...

May 12015

Santa Barbara homeowners: now is the time to go solar!

In a previous blog, "Considering a rooftop solar system?" I discussed the many benefits Santa Barbara homeowners can enjoy when they decide to go solar. Today I am going to encourage you to act now because the renewable energy tax breaks are due to ...

Apr 302015

15 facts to be happy about

We who are fortunate enough to live in Santa Barbara have a lot to be happy about. Life is easy. Life is relaxing. People are carefree, healthy and full of enthusiasm. The area is absolutely stunningly beautiful, and everyone seems to realize this fa...

Apr 282015

$40 million, the new price of luxury?

A report in today's Wall Street Journal says new luxury home listing and sales at the $40 million mark are popping up across the country including right here in Santa Barbara. The article titled "The New Price of Luxury: $40 Million," explains how th...

Apr 242015

Having Sweet Dreams in a Bedroom Sanctuary

Are you sleeping in a bedroom sanctuary? Or does your bedroom actually prevent you from getting your recommended 8-hours a night? The subject of sleep is increasingly recognized as important to public health, with sleep insufficiency linked to motor ...

Apr 172015

SOLD: Montecito Luxury Country Estate

I am happy to report the sale of a beautiful Montecito Luxury Country Estate. This cottage style 2-bedroom, 2 ½- baths home is located at 1570 Bolero Drive in posh Montecito, and sold for $3,100,000. The single story home has great curb appeal and ...

Apr 142015

Smartwatch lets you know when you’re stressed out

Imagine a smartwatch that not only tells time, but also let's you know when you're stressed out. In my recent blog, "Meet the Apple Watch," I introduced you to the long-anticipated smartwatch that will be available in stores on April 24. Today, I am ...

Apr 92015

The Internet of Things and Real Estate

What does the Internet of Things mean for the real estate industry? That's a good question, especially in light of the growing web of connectivity among people, devices, and even homes. Concerns are mounting that the coming decade may mean security b...

Apr 72015

Building a Green Home from the Ground Up

In previous blogs, I've discussed "Green Homes: Their Importance is Growing," and shared "Tips for Moving Green." Today I am going to look at the importance of building a green home from the ground up to save energy, water, precious resources and eve...

Apr 22015

4 Tips for Creating a Designer Fire Pit

Creating a designer fire pit, then gathering around it with your friends and family are two of the most rewarding perks of owning your own home. For those of us lucky enough to live in Santa Barbara, using a fire pit can be a year-round luxury. That'...

Mar 312015

Celebrate Albert Einstein’s Birthday With Home Accessories From Houzz!

Why am I suggesting that you celebrate Albert Einstein's birthday? It's all relative: The Houzz shop is paying homage to this singular genius with some interesting items for your home. The Houzz shop is an online store with a large selection of furni...

Mar 262015

How to Use Sky Blue — Especially in Santa Barbara

The versatile color called sky blue can add a bit of timeless freshness both indoors and out. Sky blue conjures up the seaside, picnics under a clear blue sky and springtime gardens. Leading interior designers suggest using sky blue to bring a light ...

Mar 242015

NEW LISTING: Montecito Spanish Style Estate for Lease

My new listing is a Montecito Spanish Style Estate for lease, priced at $25,000 per month. Located on Featherhill Road just minutes from Montecito's upper village, this gated Spanish-style estate features three bedrooms, two full and one half-baths i...

Mar 192015

6 Top Trends in Todays Master Baths

Master baths have become must-haves for today's high-end homebuyers. Create an atmosphere of personal indulgence, splurge on the finest materials, hang an extravagant chandelier, install top-of-the-line sound systems and televisions; you are limited ...

Mar 172015

Meet The Apple Watch!

I'm sure everyone is aware of the long-anticipated Apple Watch that will be available in stores on April 24. It will work with your iPhone, and can be preordered beginning April 10. The Apple Watch comes in three collections: Apple Watch Sport, Appl...

Mar 132015

Check out who made Forbes Magazine’s 2015 Guide to the World’s Billionaires

Forbes Magazine has released its 2015 guide to the world's billionaires. Check out this video from Forbes: "Billionaires 2015, the richest people on the planet." According to the new report, the number of billionaires around the globe expanded to a ...

Mar 102015

In Escrow: Charming Cape-Cod home in the center of Santa Barbara’s Golden Quadrangle

 to my client who is entering escrow on a charming Cape Cod style home in the center of Santa Barbara's Golden Quadrangle. This sale is the perfect example of why I consistently rank in the top 1% of Sotheby's International Realty® agents nationwid...

Mar 52015

Tree House Builders in Santa Barbara Take Note!

Tree house builders in Santa Barbara are taking note as Dom'Up takes the tree house to new heights. It's an innovative structure that's easy to install and leaves no trace or impact on its surrounding environment and trees. Featuring a lightweight 17...

Mar 32015

Tips on decorating your home like a Hollywood Stylist

Now that the Hollywood award season is over, it's time to learn tips on decorating your home like a Hollywood Stylist. According to Mara Roszak, think cozy bungalow with casual, earthy and classic style, layering signature design pieces with clean li...

Feb 192015

What is a prenuptial deed?

Many couples in the luxury real estate market wonder, "What is a prenuptial deed?" After all, purchasing a luxury home is a major investment. Before you decide if this is the right choice for you and your significant other, you must examine the basic...

Feb 172015

10 Things a Buyer Needs Know About Home Inspections

Whether you're in the process of buying your first home or your tenth investment property, home inspections can seem overwhelming. After all, there are many aspects of the property to consider, especially for the luxury market. An inspection can get ...

Feb 122015

Romantic Rooms to Fall In Love In, Not With

When considering creating romantic rooms, many designers surprisingly think comfort and safety, creating a space to fall in love in, not with. The Wall Street Journal interviewed five luxury home designers to share their favorite luscious spaces, and...

Feb 102015

A Valentine-ish Drought-tolerant Plant: Penstemon Parryi

With Valentine's Day right around the corner, I am going to dedicate this blog to one of my flora favorites: the drought-tolerant plant Penstemon Parryi, which adds a bit of magenta to your garden due to it's pinkish spikes. The Southwestern native m...

Feb 52015

Getting rid of clutter in your home is good for your health

Did you know that getting rid of clutter in your home could actually be good for your health? According to a recent study by researchers at UCLA, clutter can cause or contribute to elevated stress and depression and aggravate illnesses and allergies...

Feb 32015

How are declining oil prices good for real estate?

While most Americans are thrilled by declining oil prices creating up to a 50% reduction in the cost of gas at the pump, many homeowners and buyers are asking "How are declining oil prices good for real estate?" At the same time, experts are speculat...

Jan 292015

Want to spend the night in an Alpine cable car?

I love to travel, so when I learned about how you can spend the night in an Alpine cable car suspended at 9,000 feet in the French Alps I just had to share the info with you. The night in heaven is part of Airbnb's "A Night At" competition. The winne...

Jan 222015

Enjoy the Ultimate Super Bowl Experience: Only $500,000!

With Super Bowl XLIX coming to Arizona February 1, sports fans have a rare opportunity to attend the world-class event through Beck & Score's exclusive Super Bowl offerings. Beck & Score, which offers tailor-made travel experiences to the wor...

Jan 212015

New design trend: in home salons

Homeowners have discovered a permanent solution to bad hair days: creating luxury in home salons, complete with hair-washing basins, stylist chairs, manicure stations and even massage tables. Luxury homeowners love the idea of their own personal salo...

Jan 152015

The quality of schools impacts home prices

Did you know that the quality of schools impacts home prices? People are not just interested in the quality of school districts for the educational opportunities they provide, they also consider school quality as part of the overall value of the real...

Jan 132015

Incorporating Blue in Home Decor

From pale ice blue to deep indigo, incorporating blue in home decor is having its day in the sun. Living here in Santa Barbara makes it easy to be inspired by the vast ocean, beautiful azure skies, lovely hydrangeas, and even sea glass. Don't be afra...

Jan 82015

Looking for great design plants for your Montecito garden?

I know its still winter but I am already thinking about the spring and searching the Internet for ideas on great design plants for my Montecito garden. My research pointed me in the direction of this website from the City of Santa Barbara which has l...

Jan 62015

Remain healthy and stay in harmony with nature through Ayurveda

Even living here in beautiful sunny Santa Barbara, to remain healthy and stay in harmony with nature, experts highly recommended you make lifestyle and dietary adjustments in the winter. The ancient Indian "science of life" called Ayurveda explain...

Jan 22015

4 Reasons to move to Santa Barbara in 2015

There are so many good reasons to move to Santa Barbara. Our perfect, Mediterranean climate and awe-inspiring views just scratch the surface when it comes to this place of paradise on earth. Here are 4 reasons to move to Santa Barbara in 2015: 1. ...

Dec 302014

Are talking streetlights in our future?

Imagine a world where talking streetlights and lampposts can double as 911 operators. This urban prophecy could be here sooner than you think. In my blog post about smart kitchens that can help sell a home, I uncovered the latest and greatest state-...

Dec 262014

Santa Barbara Contractor Creates the Ultimate Cat Playground in His Home

I just love pets, especially those that have been rescued. So when I learned about a local man who has turned his home into the ultimate cat playground for rescued felines, my heart just melted. It all began when Santa Barbara homebuilder Peter Cohe...

Dec 232014

10 Unique uses for used wrapping paper

Make a new holiday tradition this year out of reducing, reusing, and recycling that ripped up mess of used wrapping paper.According to the Clean Air Council, an additional 5 million tons of waste is generated during the holidays in the United States...

Dec 182014

5 interesting facts about MONEY!!!

Despite today's decrease in the popularity of paper currency, money continues to make the world go round. Behind the scenes every day, more money is produced and old money is recycled. Face it, we can't live without the green stuff! I did some diggin...

Dec 162014

Strategic Real Estate Marketing Sold This Montecito Ocean View Home

Another of my amazing listings has sold thanks to my strategic real estate marketing strategy! Listed as a Montecito Ocean View Home, this English Country style manner was a real delight to market. Besides exuding Old World charm the thoughtful floor...

Dec 122014

9 household items that can double as cleaning supplies

You probably have an abundant amount of cleaning supplies in your home, for the different surfaces, carpets, bathroom, kitchens and more. I have them too! I was surprised to find out about some household items that can multi-task and be used as clean...

Dec 92014

Can the color of your room affect your mood?

Many experts believe that the color of your room might affect your mood. Thinking about painting your bedroom fiery red to welcome the holiday season? That may sound like a festive idea, but it could possibly put a damper on your sleep. "Room color,...

Dec 42014

2014 Great Nonprofits Top-rated List: Who-s On Your List?

We've all heard the stories of non-profits miss-handling their contributions. That's why the 2014 GreatNonprofits Top-Rated List caught my attention. The list includes reviews of nearly 1,700 nonprofits to help donors and volunteers find worthy ch...

Dec 22014

3 amazing women who broke through the glass ceiling

As a businesswoman who broke through the glass ceiling due to my success in Real Estate, I always love to hear about other successful women and learn their secrets. I was surprised to learn that the total number of female CEOs of Fortune 500 companie...

Nov 302014

3 design books that make the perfect holiday gift!

I love to give my friends and family inspirational gifts and have found that design books are the perfect thing to wrap up for just about anyone on my list. Here's a list of three of my favorites: Jean-Louis Deniot Interiors Rizzoli, $65 Anyone wh...

Nov 252014

Montecito homeowner with excellent credit? Consider these excellent credit cards!

With the holiday shopping season upon us, let's take a look at credit cards. If you're a Montecito homeowner with excellent credit, banks are vying for your business with some extraordinary deals.  I've researched some of the best credit card deals ...

Nov 212014

Extreme Sustainable Living in Austria

  I am always interested in learning about sustainable living ideas and found this story in The Wall Street Journal with the dirt in the topic. The story features the work of Martin Rauch, a ceramic artist and builder in Schlins, Austria, who uses ...

Nov 182014

My listing Chic Montecito Farmhouse featured in the Los Angeles Times

My Chic Montecito Farmhouse listing was selected to appear as "Home of the Day" by the prestigious Los Angeles Times. The "Home of the Day" can be found in the paper's "Business/Real Estate/Hot Property" section, both in print and online, featuring r...

Nov 142014

NEW LISTING: Santa Barbara Mesa Charmer

Check out my new listing: a real Santa Barbara Mesa Charmer and wonderful example of our coveted indoor-outdoor lifestyle. Priced at $1,399,000, this masterfully remodeled, light and bright home features multi-pane windows throughout. Many of the roo...

Nov 112014

Santa Barbara Events and Festivals: A Cornucopia of Fun

Santa Barbara has more to offer residents than the year-round sunshine, ocean views and laid-back luxury it's known for. In fact, Santa Barbara events and festivals, as well as concerts and special events, offer fun for every interest and taste. It's...

Nov 72014

Sotheby’s Luxury Lifestyle Report

The Sotheby's International Realty® Luxury Lifestyle Report, which is based on a survey of affluent consumers in the United States, United Kingdom, Brazil and China, reveals insights into the purchasing behavior of high net-worth consumers. As highl...

Nov 42014

Make way for new luxury in your home

It's that time of year to clear out the old before the end of the year and make way for new luxury in your home. Simply replacing a few things can increase your daily environment as well as your home's value. Here are my top 5 things you truly, categ...

Oct 312014

NEW LISTING ALERT: San Ysidro-style Ocean View Estate, Montecito

If you live for breathtaking views, then my new listing, a San Ysidro-Style Ocean View Estate, Montecito, is for you! Listed at $9,250,000, this immaculate, spacious, 4 bedroom, 3.5 bath San Ysidro-style estate features the amazing views that are qui...

Oct 282014

Romance potential homebuyers over the holidays

Every year, my customers who are selling their property in the upscale communities of Santa Barbara ask me how to romance potential homebuyers over the holidays. Experts suggest staging your home with some holiday cheer, but caution sellers not to g...

Oct 242014

Difficult Real Estate Decisions: Can Tylenol Help?

I just read an interesting article in The Wall Street Journal that might show a correlation between acetaminophen and reduction in the psychological pain of difficult real estate decisions. The article is based on a new study that will be released ne...

Oct 202014

Tips for Green Moving

It's not surprising that more and more people are going green in their everyday lives, but what about green moving? That means moving while limiting your contribution to waste. Sound impossible? It is not only possible, but also it's easy. All it tak...

Oct 172014

ANOTHER NEW LISTING: Ocean View Santa Barbara Retreat

It has been another stellar week in the real estate industry here in Santa Barbara. I just got another new listing to share with you: a tasteful Ocean View Santa Barbara Retreat located at 105 La Plata in the community of Santa Barbara, known through...

Oct 142014

NEW LISTING: Beach Cottage in Montecito

My new Beach Cottage in Montecito listing offers an amazing, once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for anyone who has ever wanted to live by the beach in the upscale community of Montecito. This three bedroom, 3.5 bath property is truly move-in ready; Resto...

Oct 102014

6 hot trends in today’s luxury homes

Beyond the great room, soaring, vaulted ceilings, amazing views and high-end communities, today's luxury homes must stand out from the crowd. That's why developers of homes and communities designed for upper echelon buyers are pulling out all the sto...

Oct 72014

October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month: What Will You Contribute?

Breast Cancer Awareness Month is an annual international health campaign organized by major breast cancer charities every October to increase awareness of the disease and to raise funds for research into its cause, prevention, diagnosis, treatm...

Oct 32014

Members of Fashion’s Billionaires Club Among America’s Wealthiest Entrepreneurs

You know the brands, like the Gap, Victoria's Secret, and Urban Outfitters, but what about the individual behind the brands, referred to as Fashion's Billionaires Club? The Forbes Magazine list of American Billionaires includes only 11 names from the...

Sep 302014

French Provincial-Style Montecito Estate

If you've ever dreamed about living in a luxury home in Montecito, now is your chance to make this dream come true. Homebuyers can take advantage of a new price reduction on a charming French Provincial-Style Montecito Estate. Featuring breathtaking ...

Sep 252014

Luxury Homes Priced to Sell at $30 million

A recent story in the Wall Street Journal has some very interesting news about sales of luxury homes. Data from Realtor.com says luxury homes are selling at a faster rate than they were selling last year at this time. But that's not the entire story....

Sep 232014

Luxury Home Closing Perks My Clients Adore

Did you know that Realtors in the USA spend more than $510 million each year on home closing perks? Most of these perks come in the form of traditional items from gift cards (59.5 percent) and flowers to plants (37.2 percent), and gift baskets (36.7 ...

Sep 192014

Financial Websites: 3 of the Best

It seems like every day we hear about smart, new financial websites and apps designed to change the way we save, shop, bank, invest and more. Here are some of the most interesting; perfect for my clients that own luxury real estate in Santa Barbara: ...

Sep 162014

Color trends for your Santa Barbara home

Considering painting your abode in 2015 or before? If you're ready to research color trends for your Santa Barbara home, you might want to look to the editors at Elle Decor and the top interior designers they polled recently. Here are the results: 1...

Sep 122014

12 tips for getting a home ready for fall

As the days become shorter and the temperatures dip lower (at least in other parts of the country), you might want to have a look at my tips for getting a home ready for fall. Taking care of the little things now can make a big difference this fall a...

Sep 92014

What are ultra-wealthy luxury homebuyers looking for today?

I just read a story in Inman News, regarding what ultra-wealthy luxury homebuyers are looking for in real estate today. As I previously reported, more luxury homebuyers come from overseas (and are paying all cash). For example, Chinese buyers investe...

Sep 52014

Montecito View Estate featured in the Los Angeles Times

My new listing, Montecito View Estate, has been featured in the "Hot Property" section of The Los Angeles Times. The "Hot Property" section of the popular daily and online paper features celebrity and luxury real estate news. When the editors found o...

Sep 22014

UNDER CONTRACT: Montecito View Home

This Montecito View Home went under contract before I could even get it listed on my website! Priced at $2,575,000, this English Country-style manor is a beautiful example of old World charm combined with modern comforts. With more than 4,000 square ...

Aug 292014

Do You Have a Disaster Preparedness Kit for Your Home?

The recent earthquake in Napa brings to light the importance of having a disaster preparedness kit for your home. You need to make sure you have the proper supplies in an easy to reach place. Keep the supplies in an easy-to-carry kit (like a backpack...

Aug 262014

How do you feng shui your home?

In feng shui, the ancient Chinese art and science of energy flow, Yin (passive energy) and Yang (active energy) are associated with the feminine and masculine characteristics of objects in your home. Having more of one over the other creates an imbal...

Aug 212014

New listing: Montecito Farmhouse

My new listing is a stunning Montecito Farmhouse in a prime location accessed by a private lane. This board and batten farmhouse has been fully restored with meticulous detail, using the finest materials, by Santa Barbara award winning contractors, G...

Aug 122014

Celebrity Closet Organizing Secrets

I did some digging around on the Internet to find out the secrets of celebrity closet organizing. Wow, did I learn a lot! Closet organization is key to getting your whole wardrobe and yourself ready to take on the world like a superstar. Did you ever...

Aug 82014

How to organize your kitchen

In today's world, we all live hectic lives so let's take a look at how to organize your kitchen to simplify things a bit. The kitchen is probably the most used room in your home so it's not hard to imagine that when it is organized and easy to use, y...

Aug 52014

The 3 hottest architecture trends can be found in Santa Barbara

Here's another reason to love living in Santa Barbara: today's 3 hottest architecture trends can be found here: Pre-WWII. These homes can be Victorians including California Missions, Greek Revivals and Tudors. Actually just about any home built w...

Jul 312014

New Listing in Montecito: SOLD!

My new listing in Montecito was only on the market for a short time. In fact, it SOLD in one day for the full asking price of $2,350,000. This sophisticated Montecito pied-à-terre, combining the Santa Barbara lifestyle with chic urban living is an ...

Jul 292014

What to do with your dog while on vacation

It's that time of year when Americas ask what to do with their dog while they take their annual summer vacation. Why should humans have all the fun? That's the motto of  "DogVacay.com," a unique service offering dog owners piece of mind while out of...

Jul 252014

Swimming Pool Safety Tips

It's no secret that there are a lot of swimming pools in Montecito and Hope Ranch. This time of year, when our pools are uncovered most of the time and friends and family are enjoying a splash, we need to be especially mindful of the following swimmi...

Jul 222014

Tax breaks for a second home

Tax breaks for a second home make owning that pied-à-terre an excellent investment choice. If you are considering buying a second home for vacation, rental or investment, you need to understand today's tax breaks and what they mean. Tax laws are com...

Jul 182014

The fine art of outdoor dining

We are so lucky to live here in Santa Barbara, the perfect city to experience the fine art of outdoor dining. An outdoor kitchen is one of the things homebuyers are looking for today, especially in our sunny communities. If you are thinking of remode...

Jul 152014

Architectural gem in Montecito SOLD through strategic marketing strategy

Using my strategic marketing strategy, an architectural gem in Montecito has been SOLD! My strategy to sell this home, and all the properties I list, includes direct mail marketing, delivered right into the hands of qualified homebuyers; upscale ma...

Jul 112014

Summer: the best time of year to sell your home

Timing really is a very important factor when it comes to property sales and the best time of year to sell your home is during the spring and summer. Choosing the right month to list your property can make a huge difference for any seller. Statistics...

Jul 82014

7 tips for preventing burglary: the most common threat to our homes

  Preventing burglary should be a top priority for all of us. According to the FBI, home burglaries are the most common threat to our homes in the U.S. In fact, statistics show that a home burglary occurs every 13 seconds, the majority in July and ...

Jul 42014

Rising home prices mean rising inventory

Are you one of the homeowners thinking about selling your home due to rising home prices? According to the University of Michigan and Thomson Reuter, reports of rising home prices are making selling more attractive. In fact, the report shows that the...

Jul 12014

Modern choices for multi-functional home decor

Looking for multi- functional home décor that is family friendly? Until now, that was simply impossible. Frankly, until now, family design ideas were…ugly. But thanks to some smart designers, modern choices for home décor today make it easy to be...

Jun 272014

How will the rest of the real estate recovery play out?

Want to know how the rest of the real estate recovery will play out? Here's what the experts are saying based on surveys and interviews with real estate developers, investors, lenders, servicers and builders: 1) Real estate recovery still hinges on ...

Jun 242014

Home improvements that pay you back

Home improvements that pay you back are important to homeowners in Montecito, Hope Ranch and Santa Barbara where those upgrades can cost a bundle. If you're considering your options, you should keep in mind that according to the National Association ...

Jun 202014

NEW LISTING: Exceptional Montecito Home

If you are in the market for an exceptional Montecito home, then my new listing is for you. This remodeled 5 bedroom, 3.5 bath home, located in the heart of the community, is being offered at $4,395,000. The new owners will be delighted by the acc...

Jun 172014

SOLD! Sprawling Montecito Hacienda

 I strive to make my customer's dream come true, whether buying or selling, and I am happy to report that I just found a client the perfect home: a sprawling Montecito Hacienda. Located at 121 Olive Mill Lane in Montecito, this gorgeous estate was l...

Jun 132014

Considering a rooftop solar system?

If you are considering a rooftop solar system, there are 4 things you need to keep in mind. In the last 10 years, homes with rooftop solar systems have become practically commonplace, especially in Santa Barbara and the surrounding communities. By n...

Jun 102014

Green Homes: Their Importance is Growing

Yet another example of the growing importance of green homes: the National Assn. of Realtors has just published a new guide to promote special green features. The new comprehensive guide has been designed so that potential homeowners can find out abo...

Jun 62014

The future of mortgage rates

Are you concerned about the future of mortgage rates? Are you confused about the actual condition of the US economy today? I've researched the most recent data for you that show mortgage rates dodged a bullet this week, ending a 5-day losing strea...

Jun 32014

Selling celebrity real estate

Since Hollywood stars abound in Santa Barbara, real estate agents need to have a specific plan when it comes to selling celebrity real estate here. Why wouldn't celebrities want to reside at the crown jewel of the California coast?  With areas like ...

May 302014

Social Media Can Help Sell Your Property

It’s a fact: Social media can help sell your property. In fact, social media has become one of the most important marketing tools to make a listing visible across multiple channels. The added online exposure of your home via social media networkin...

May 282014

5 common homebuyer mistakes to avoid

With more than 20 years in the real estate industry, most rated in the top 1% of Sotheby's International Realty® nationwide, I've seen these 5 common homebuyer mistakes made over and over. The good news is that they can be easily avoided easily. Her...

May 232014

Mortgage rates remain far below economist’s predictions

Today's mortgage rates remain far below economist's predictions at the beginning of 2014. As we rang in the New Year, experts rang out an alarm saying the 30-year mortgage rate would rise to at least 5%. These economists based their warning on the Fe...

May 202014

Real estate trends that attract buyers

If you are planning to sell your home, then you will want to pay attention to these real estate trends that attract buyers. Four hundred thirty-five real estate professionals were surveyed about what buyers are looking for in luxury homes today. Here...

May 162014

The House from Scarface Hits the Market in Montecito

Would you like to own the house from Scarface? It's one of Montecito's most magnificent and historic properties. The historic estate, El Fureidis (''Tropical Paradise, "Little Paradise" or "Pleasure Gardens"), was just listed at $35,000,000. One of M...

May 122014

Federal Reserve optimistic about housing market

Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen remains optimistic when it comes to our U.S. economy and says a rebound in spending and production in the housing market is already underway. "While we have seen substantial improvements in labor market conditions ...

May 92014

Home sellers: don’t leave your pet at home during an open house

As an animal lover, I can relate to home sellers who want to leave their pet at home during an open house. However, it's not a good idea for your pet or for potential buyers. As an accomplished real estate agent in Santa Barbara, Hope Ranch, Montecit...

May 22014

Luxury Homes in Santa Barbara: In Demand More Than Ever?

Are you ready for one of the luxury homes in Santa Barbara and its surrounding areas? Realtor.com surveyed more than 1,500 visitors to their site from March 17 to April 2 and found that 13% of consumers today are looking to buy a luxury home. Another...

Apr 292014

4 important Tips For Creating a Pet-Friendly Home

If you live in one of the 82.5 million households in the United States that owns a pet, I've got four important tips to share with you on creating a pet-friendly home. It's a fact: 68% of American households own a pet or two (or three…) and pet o...

Apr 252014

New listing: Relaxed Sophistication in Montecito

  Want to live in a quintessential California coastal retreat and enjoy relaxed sophistication in Montecito? Then my new listing is just for you! Situated on nearly an acre of land, this amazing home just hit the market for $4,395,000. Enjoy th...

Apr 222014

What are new home buyers looking for today?

Are you curious to learn about what new home buyers are looking for today in the real estate market? According to a recent survey by the National Association of Home Builders, "convenience, livability and energy efficiency" top the list but there...

Apr 182014

The Juliet Balcony: A Romantic and Practical Extension to Your Home

Have you ever considered adding a Juliet balcony to your home? We're all familiar with Shakespeare's Romeo & Juliet and the famous scene where our heroine stands on the terrace and talks about love to her Romeo. It's not surprising that the locat...

Apr 152014

Should home sellers decorate for Easter?

At this time of year, my clients who have listed their homes with me always ask if home sellers decorating for Easter is a good idea. Before I answer that question, let me explain the purpose of staging your home: to improve the home's appearance to...

Apr 112014

Santa Barbara Wine Country: The Santa Ynez Valley

Attention wine aficionados who are thinking of moving: the Santa Ynez Valley is home to some of California's most sought-after wines. Our county's unique location and climate make it the perfect place to grow grapes that produce some of most spectacu...

Apr 82014

Second Home Sales are Surging in the U.S.

I just read a report in The Wall Street Journal that says second home sales are surging in the U.S. thanks to expanding wealth, the stock market rally and restored confidence in the housing market. In fact, the National Association of Realtors (NAR) ...

Apr 42014

96% of Real Estate Markets Are Better Off Today

Did you know that 96% of US counties are better off today then they were four years ago when it comes to the real estate market? That information comes from RealtyTrac, a real estate information company and online marketplace for foreclosed and def...

Apr 12014

New Listing: Cape Cod-Style Home for Sale in Carpinteria

My new listing, a beautiful Cape Cod-style home in Carpinteria, offers sweeping views of Santa Barbara and the harbor in this quaint coastal community. Home of the world's "safest beach," Carpinteria is known for its gentle slope and calm waves. The ...

Mar 252014

10 Homeowner Tips for Going Green

We all know the importance of environmental stewardship. But what are some important rules for those of us who own our homes? Just follow these simple homeowner tips for going green: 1. Replace old appliances  The Environmental Protection Agency (...

Mar 242014

Boosting Your Home’s Salability: Get a Handle on it!

Whether you are selling your home or staying put, a great way of boosting your home's salability is by repairing and/or replacing door and cabinet hardware that's making your rooms look dingy and outdated. Door and cabinet hardware can be simple or o...

Mar 212014

The Spring Real Estate Market: Planning on Jumping In?

Whether you're looking to buy or sell real estate, if you're planning to jump into the spring real estate market you'll need to be ready. Experts predict more demand will make the busy spring and summer seasons sizzle in the U.S. That prediction is b...

Mar 182014

Introducing the Delightful Town of Goleta

The delightful town of Goleta is a great place to live, work and play. If you are looking for a safe and supportive area to raise your family, then this bedroom community of Santa Barbara is the perfect place. Education is a top priority in Goleta. I...

Mar 172014

Homeowners and the California Drought of 2014

We hear a lot of news about the drought of 2014 in California but are you aware that it follows two of our driest years on record? Statistics show that 63% percent of the state is in extreme drought, and the Sierra Nevada snowpack is now running ...

Feb 82014

Today’s Home Construction Materials Offer Convenience and Beauty

Homeowners and their architects, designers and contractors used to have to choose between the beauty of genuine wood and stone or the easy maintenance of man-made alternatives. But all that has changed. In today's home construction materials marketpl...

Feb 72014

Planning a Spring Garden in California? Consider the Drought

A spring garden in California should definitely be planned with the drought in mind. With a little bit of research and planning, however, you can plant some varieties that will thrive with less water and still enjoy your garden. A new report from ...

Feb 72014

5 Tips For Buying or Selling a Home

As a real estate agent serving clients buying or selling a home, I see it all. I'm still surprised when sellers leave unmade beds, smelly kitchens, overstuffed garages and other messes after putting their home on the market, knowing I will be brining...

Feb 72014

Quality Kitchens Can Help Your Home Sell

Believe it or not, having a quality kitchen hosting state-of-the-art appliances and other high-end accouterments can attract potential home buyers and clinch a sale. I would be delighted to list a home with the so-called "smart appliances" and conn...

Feb 52014

Is the 30-year mortgage a thing of the past?

According to a recent story in The Wall Street Journal, the 30-year mortgage is no longer a popular choice, especially among affluent buyers. Why? It's simple: lower rates mean borrowers can save thousands of dollars in interest. (more…)...

Jan 312014

Ability To Repay and Qualified Mortgage: What Do Those New Regulations Mean to You?

Confused about the new federal "ability to repay" and "qualified mortgage" regulations that took effect Jan. 10, 2014? Don't worry, you're not alone. In fact, mortgage, banking and credit union leaders all agreed during recent hearings on Capitol Hil...

Jan 282014

Could you live in one of these gravity defying homes?

Recently, I saw this article in Elle Décor that lists 15 gravity defying homes from around the world. The residential wonders, as they're called in this round-up are something to behold, for sure. Here are my favorites: (more…)...

Jan 242014

New Montecito Listing near the San Ysidro Ranch

Offering the relaxed sophistication, gorgeous views and indoor-outdoor lifestyle for which Santa Barbara's finest homes are world-renowned, my new Montecito listing near the San Ysidro Ranch is a must-see. Also just a couple of minutes from Montecito...

Jan 222014

California’s home prices rose; sales declined in December

According to a recent article in the Los Angeles Times, California's home prices rose while the number of home sales declined to a six-year low in December. What does this mean to you, the seller? It indicates that there is still a limited supply of ...

Jan 172014

93108: Montecito Consistently One of Forbes Richest Zip Codes

Nestled between the Santa Ynez Mountains and the sparkling Pacific Ocean sits the community of Montecito (zip code 93108), boasting some of the most spectacular and expensive real estate in the United States. The community is consistently ranked by F...

Jan 142014

Montecito Home Inspirations From Around the World

Looking for a way to create a truly inspiring living space in your Montecito home? Here are four ideas gathered from homes around the world from House Beautiful Magazine: (more…)...

Jan 92014

10 Tips for a Stress-free Move with Your Dog

There are some simple steps every pet lover can take to ensure a stress free move with your dog. It's common knowledge that dogs are creatures of habit and few things mess up a routine like moving. Here are 10 things you can do to put your dog at...

Jan 82014

Golfers Dream Home: Exclusive listing in Birnam Wood

Having the inside knowledge of unlisted properties in Santa Barbara's most desirable communities, Cristal Clark is able to include in her portfolio of exclusive listings a golfers dream home located in Montecito's private enclave of Birnam Wood. The ...

Nov 112013

Santa Barbara Attractions

Santa Barbara is renowned as one of Southern California's favorite vacation destinations, so you'll probably have quite a few guests knocking on your door throughout the year. If you're at loose ends about how to keep them entertained, let them exper...

Oct 242013

Santa Barbara Luxury Estate Remodeling Ideas and Tips

Thinking about making a change? Whether your space needs refreshing or your needs have evolved, a home remodel is in order. To help you get started, we've put together a few Santa Barbara luxury estate remodeling ideas and tips. Have a look: (more&he...

Aug 142013

Santa Barbara Home and Garden Styles

From classic Spanish Colonial Revival homes to mid-century modern residences, rock gardens to lush Mediterranean-inspired landscaping, Santa Barbara home and garden styles are incredibly diverse. This is due to the region's geography, which stretches...

Jul 122013

Best Santa Barbara Landscapes

Santa Barbara has no shortage of spectacular scenery and choosing the best Santa Barbara landscapes is no easy task. That said, here's a sampling of the best places in the region to view and/or catch a view from: (more…)...

Jun 182013

Most Expensive Home for Sale in the Santa Barbara Area

Have you been wondering what the most expensive home for sale in the Santa Barbara area currently is? While we certainly have no shortage of high value properties in the region, some just come with significantly loftier price tags for various reasons...

Jun 122013

Get Your Offer Accepted

With more and more buyers seeking fewer and fewer houses there are a number of things a buyer can do to try and make sure his or her offer gets noticed in a competitive marketplace driven by lower inventory levels. (more…)...

May 232013

Real Estate Prices Rising Across the Country

There have been numerous articles in recent months about the surge in home prices, so lets take a deeper look into some of the numbers and see what is happening in various parts of the US, including the Santa Barbara area, and why prices are rising a...

May 162013

Celebrity Living in Santa Barbara

What's it like to be a celebrity living in Santa Barbara? In a word: relaxing. The area, also known as the “American Riviera,” has been a magnet for the rich and famous for over a century. Celebrities here can stroll down the street without getti...

May 142013

Preparing Your Santa Barbara Home For Sale

There are several things sellers can do when preparing their homes for sale in order to make them more appealing to  buyers and minimize any negotiations over requests for buyer credits and potential legal actions. So, when you're preparing your San...

May 72013

Housing Recovery: Threats Remain

The recent drop in foreclosure rates to 2007 lows, combined with climbing home sales and prices (as seen in Santa Barbara real estate!), are a reflection that the real estate market is continuing to gain ground. Threats remain, however. What are they...

May 22013

Foreign Investment In Real Estate: The Luxury Market

In today's real estate environment, more and more buyers are coming from overseas to purchase primary and/or secondary residences. That phenomenon is being seen in Santa Barbara real estate, and especially when it comes to Montecito homes. In order t...

Apr 242013

Top 10 Best Estates in Santa Barbara

Santa Barbara has long been synonymous with gracious living, its hillsides, and beaches strewn with some of the grandest estates in the country. Having been a Santa Barbara Realtor for more than 20 years, I have become more than familiar with our...

Apr 112013

Luxury Real Estate – Proposed Tax Cuts

President Barack Obama once again is calling for a cap on the value of itemized deductions, including the mortgage-interest and property-tax deductions, in his 2014 federal budget request. The cap would limit the value of deductions to 28 perce...

Apr 112013

Land Prices Rise as Builders Scramble for Lots

An improving housing market is creating a sharper increase in land prices and "creating big profits for land investors, but putting pressure on builders to further increase the price of new homes," The Wall Street Journal reports. Land values acr...

Apr 112013

Lenders More Upbeat About Housing Recovery

It's true, lenders are more upbeat about the direction of the housing recovery The housing recovery continues: more than 70% of lenders surveyed said home prices are "rising at a sustainable pace," according to a quarterly survey of U.S. bank pro...

Mar 262013

10 Best Things to Love About Santa Barbara

There's so much to love about Santa Barbara that it's hard to pick only 10 but here it goes.... It seems almost sacrilegious to just list down ten things to love about Santa Barbara – but then enumerating all of them would take up a great deal m...

Oct 182012

Selling Santa Barbara Luxury Real Estate

Selling Santa Barbara luxury real estate can be tricky The purchase or sale of Santa Barbara luxury real estate is different than selling your average single-family home or starter condominium. That's why it's imperative to secure the assistance of ...

Oct 162012

A Brief Look at Santa Barbara History

Santa Barbara History is Rich Santa Barbara history begins approximately 13,000 years ago with the arrival of the first Native Americans. For more than 10,000 years, the Canalenos (coast dwellers), or Chumash, lived in this region an enjoyed the r...

Jul 212012

Prices Continue To Rise & Inventories Continue To Fall

Are you happy that prices continue to rise? In today's real estate market, prices continue to rise as inventories continue to fall. Over the past several weeks there have been a number of articles from various sources, including my blog on that sub...

Jul 112012

Santa Barbara Real Estate: Rebounding Riviera

If you have read my June Newsletter and are seeking additional information regarding the Santa Barbara Real Estate Market the article Santa Barbara Real Estate: Rebounding Riviera is an excellent place to start. For several months now I have bee...

Jul 112012

Real Estate Prices Are Going Back Up

Real Estate Investments Just Got Better Because Real Estate Prices are Going Back Up! The article Real Estate Prices Are Going Back Up is referenced in my June Newsletter and is an article from July 8th by Jed Kolko and is well worth the read. Ther...

Jun 222012

Vacation home buyers – are they back?

Since the real estate collapse in 2008 I think it is safe to say the vacation home buyers market has been some what on the back burner for many people, with uncertainty in the economy and else where this is, to say the least, understandable. However,...

Jun 182012

California Real Estate & the “Echo Boomers”

We have all heard of  "Generation X" and "Baby Boomers" but what about "Echo Boomers." Between the demographic age of 17 and 31, there are sixty-two million echo boomers in the United States who between them are expected to shape the housing market ...

Jun 82012

Santa Barbara Luxury Real Estate

In Santa Barbara we may be used to the term May grey but the Santa Barbara luxury real estate market  it is anything but grey with buyers continuing to be active and inventory continuing Aprils trend.  For the month of May sales are up 40% with 47...

Jun 12012

Home Ownership, American Dream or Reality

Has the perceptive of Home Ownership in American changed or is it still the American dream. More and more in today's buying statistics bigger is no longer better and more and more the reality is no longer based on a financial venture but a statemen...

May 262012

Memorial Day & Military Housing

As Memorial Day approaches I thought it would be a good time to take a moment and thank all our Military Service men and women for all the sacrifices they and their families make on behalf of our Nation. Growing up as a Military kid and moving from b...

May 222012

Real Estate Affordability

In today's market place the decision is not whether or where to by but should I buy. There has been a continuing trend over the past two plus years for people who have either lost their home to foreclosure or sold out ahead of the downward market pla...

May 112012

LUXURY REAL ESTATE AND LOW MORTGAGE RATES

Just when you thought mortgages could not go any lower, for the second straight week fixed rate mortgages have reached new all-time lows making it even more affordable to own a home and here in  Santa Barbara homes, Montecito luxury estate property ...

May 32012

INCREASE THE VALUE OF YOUR HOME

Whether you are selling a Montecito Luxury Estate, Hope Ranch ocean view estate or a Santa Barbara home there are things a seller can do to make their home more appealing. You've heard the phrase a thousand times, location, location, location, but w...

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