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Cristal's Blog

The Cristal Clarke Real Estate Blog is perhaps the most comprehensive and informative real estate blog devoted specifically to subjects of interest to home buyers, sellers, and owners in Santa Barbara, Montecito and Hope Ranch. It contains over 300 posts on topics ranging from residential real estate predictions and design trends, to local cultural opportunities and recreational activities.

Scroll this page for the latest posts, or choose among those in the Categories list on the righthand sidebar.

Oct 212021

Buying a Second Home? Or a Third? You’re Not Alone.

THE RISE OF HYBRID LIVING  More Americans are buying a second home (or a third) these days, and they’re shopping in locations like Mon

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Oct 142021

A Star is Born Among Montecito Restaurants

THE COMMUNITY CELEBRATES ITS FIRST MICHELIN STAR EATERY Attention Montecito foodies: the flourishing culinary scene here just got better with the

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Oct 112021

Have a Spooktacular and Safe Halloween in Santa Barbara

BEWITCHING FUN, PUMPKIN PATCHES, AND MORE Every year when the harvest moon rises, Santa Barbara residents are treated to bewitching sp

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Oct 72021

Selling a Montecito Home This Fall or Winter?

HEED THESE 6 SMART SELLING TIPS, AND SOME YEAR-ROUND ADVICE Thinking of selling a Montecito home this fall or winter, like the owners of m

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Sep 292021

The Art of Selling a Luxury Home: Secrets of A Top Realtor

5 THINGS CONSIDERED WHEN IT COMES TO LUXURY REAL ESTATE SALES If you’re considering selling a luxury home, keep in mind that sales are s

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Sep 222021

What Makes a Home a “Luxury Home”?

10 THINGS THAT CAN MAKE A MERELY LOVELY HOME LUXURIOUS What makes a "luxury home"? The epitome of a lavish California beach villa, the hom

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Sep 152021

Moving Tips: A Top Realtor’s Moving Checklist

8 TRIED AND TRUE WAYS TO ENSURE A STRESS-FREE TRANSITION FROM OLD HOME TO NEW The process of moving into a new home requires careful plann

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Sep 82021

19 Yearly Home Maintenance Tasks

THINK OF THESE TASKS AS GIVING VITAMINS TO YOUR HOME Remember when you bought your house? You noted a million and ten things that needed t

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Sep 72021

7 Ways to Conserve Water in the California Drought


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Sep 12021

The Santa Barbara Bowl: A Shrine to the Performing Arts

THE BOWL IS BACK! TIME TO MAKE PLANS TO SEE A SHOW, OR TWO, OR . . . The Santa Barbara Bowl, a 4,562-seat amphitheater, is historic i

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Aug 272021

6 Shopping Strategies of the Affluent Buyer

SMART MONTECITO SHOPPERS SHOP WISELY When it comes to shopping strategies of the affluent buyer, look closely and you’ll discover a

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Aug 212021

The 2021 Santa Barbara Real Estate Market : A Top Realtor’s View

A Q&A WITH #1 SANTA BARBARA AGENT CRISTAL CLARKE The 2021 Santa Barbara real estate market continues, with experts seeing a major post

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Aug 172021

Santa Barbara’s COVID Survival Guide

FROM VACCINES AND VARIANTS, TO RESOURCES AND REAL ESTATE Santa Barbara is officially open after COVID-19. However, don’t expect business

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Aug 122021

The Santa Barbara Garden: 10 Plants To Spruce It Up While Keeping Mosquitos Away

ADD CURB APPEAL WITHOUT INVITING PESKY PESTS Do you know there are some beautiful plants that can safely act to keep mosquitos out of your Santa Ba

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Aug 102021

Thinking About Investing in Luxury Storage Units?

JOIN OTHER SAVVY SELF-STORAGE INVESTORS LIKE BILL GATES If you’re among those considering investing in the quickly emerging trend of lux

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Aug 52021

The Emerging Popularity of Luxury Storage Units


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Jul 282021

The Best Interior Paint Colors for Selling a House

RESULTS FROM A NEW STUDY, AND THE COLORS FOR EVERY ROOM Is it worth considering the best interior paint colors for selling a house? Every

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Jul 222021

Local Spotlight: Montecito’s Lotusland: One of the World’s 10 Best Gardens

YOUR GUIDE TO THE PERFECT PLACE TO BASK IN SANTA BARBARA’S BOTANICAL BEAUTY  Everyone knows about Santa Barbara’s beautiful beaches,

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Jul 202021

Buying or Leasing a Santa Barbara Home: A Guide for the Perplexed

3 KEY QUESTIONS TO ASK As the 2021 Santa Barbara real estate market enters its second half, I find a few people are pondering the questi

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Jul 82021

Are You a Mid-Century Modern Furniture Fan?

WHERE TO FIND MID-CENTURY IN SANTA BARBARA The enduring popularity of mid-century modern furniture is based on many factors. It gives us

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Jun 302021

Today’s Top Luxury Real Estate Trends

TIME TO GO BIG AND GO HOME! I love to blog about the latest luxury real estate trends, and I’ve uncovered 5 interesting changes to share

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Jun 252021

Santa Barbara 4th of July Celebration 2021: The Big Show is Back!

CELEBRATING SAFELY ON THE AMERICAN RIVIERA There’s a lot to celebrate this Santa Barbara 4th of July now that the state of California

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Jun 232021

Around The World Ideas for Santa Barbara Gardens


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Jun 182021

The Santa Barbara Real Estate Market Continues to Skyrocket

LOCAL REAL ESTATE DEMAND IS, IN A WORD, RELENTLESS The Santa Barbara real estate market is continuing to surge, with prices soaring, even as

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Jun 32021

Local Spotlight: The Santa Barbara Airport

CONVENIENCE, CHOICE AND A CORNUCOPIA OF CONNECTIONS  As the 13th largest airport in California, Santa Barbara Airport (SBA) typicall

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May 292021

How to Declutter Your Home: Tips From a Luxury Realtor

DECLUTTERING COMES WITH MANY BENEFITS It’s Good for Your Health! Decluttering your home is not a new concept, but how to declutter yo

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May 202021

Creating a Cat-friendly Home

7 STEPS TO FASHIONING A FELINE HAVEN Today’s home hunters are looking for pet-loving spaces like never before. That doesn’t’ exclusi

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May 142021

Road Tripping Near Santa Barbara – With or Without the Dog


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May 62021

How to Add Value to Your Home

A TOP REALTOR’S GUIDE TO RENOVATION, REMODELING, OR JUST FRESHENING UP Whether you’re selling a Hope Ranch property like the French cou

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Apr 212021

Attention Vacation Rental Owners (and Potential Owners)!

SANTA BARBARA AND MONTECITO VACATION HOME RENTALS ARE IN DEMAND In the words of David Bowie and Mick Jagger, “the summer’s here and th

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Apr 162021

The Fine Art of Outdoor Dining in Santa Barbara

10 ESSENTIAL TIPS TO CREATE THE ULTIMATE AL FRESCO VENUE We who are lucky enough to call Montecito and its surrounding communities home

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Apr 142021

10 Common Home Buying Mistakes to Avoid

  THINK LIKE A SELLER, AND CALL A PRO If you were considering buying the property shown above, you’re out of luck. The buyers o

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Apr 102021

The Home Inspection: What Every Buyer Needs to Know

WHAT INSPECTORS SHOULD INSPECT, AND THE HOMEBUYER SHOULD EXPECT For most buyers, a home inspection can be both reassuring and exhausting.

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Apr 82021

A Practical Guide to Cleaning Out a Garage

GET READY TO PURGE, SORT AND DECLUTTER YOUR MONTECITO MOTOR MOTEL The garage is one of those spaces homeowners can easily put off organizi

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Apr 72021

The Importance of Staging a Home

20 EXPERT STAGING TIPS FOR A QUICK SALE AND TOP DOLLAR The importance of staging a home cannot be overstated. That's why staging is on

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Apr 32021

Celebrating the Spring Real Estate Market

8 REASONS TO LIST YOUR SANTA BARBARA HOME NOW! If you’re considering listing your home in any of the upscale communities in Santa Barbar

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Apr 12021

The Sweet Spot for Luxury Homebuyers: Not Too Big, Not Too Small

LUXURY HOMEBUYERS TAKE A CUE FROM GOLDILOCKS As affluent Americans reconsider their priorities amid the pressures of COVID-19, a sweet sp

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Mar 262021

The Home of the Future From Leading Architects

4 WAYS SANTA BARBARA HOMES ARE LEADING THE WAY What will a home of the future offer? According to leading architects, future home spa

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Mar 202021

Easter 2021: Celebrating Easter in the Age of COVID-19

8 IDEAS FOR A SAFE CELEBRATION IN SANTA BARBARA Here’s some hoppy news: Easter 2021 is right around the corner: April 4th. Even in the

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Mar 162021

Exterior Color Schemes That Work for Santa Barbara Homes

EXPERTS WEIGH IN ON WHY TO PAINT, AND WHAT COLOR COMBINATIONS QUALIFY AS CLASSIC There are many reasons to tackle the seemingly overwhelming

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Mar 112021

Getting Back to Basics: At Home With Your 5 Senses

MULTI- SENSORY DESIGN AND LIFESTYLE TRENDS Something positive has emerged from our past year of spending much more time in our homes, both

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Mar 102021

The Santa Barbara International Film Festival Reinvents Itself


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Mar 62021

Housing Market 2020: Let’s Look at the Record-Setting Year

IN SPITE OF A GLOBAL PANDEMIC, HOME SALES AND PRICES SOARED If you Google “housing market 2020,” you’ll be part of a large group of

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Mar 32021

6 Ways to Improve The Indoor Air Quality of Your Home

CLEAN AIR SYSTEMS: THE NEW REAL ESTATE STATUS SYMBOL Considering springtime pollen causing allergies and the fear of spreading COVID-19, i

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Feb 262021

A Luxury Realtor’s Homebuyer Guide to Property Easements

WHAT ARE PROPERTY EASEMENTS AND HOW DO THEY IMPACT SANTA BARBARA HOMEBUYERS? This comprehensive home buyer guide to property easements off

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Feb 192021

Outdoor Living Spaces for Luxury Homes: Builders Follow the Santa Barbara Example

5 SANTA BARBARA OUTDOOR TRENDS U.S. HOMEOWNERS ARE EMBRACING Outdoor living spaces for luxury homes across the country are becoming bigger

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Feb 172021

Luxury Home Sales: U.S. Demand for $1 Million-Plus Homes Hits All Time High

ARE LUXURY HOME SALES THE SILVER LINING OF COVID-19? More homebuyers are searching for properties listed for $1 million or more these days,

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Feb 132021

Take a Montecito At-Home Wellness Sabbatical

6 STEPS DESIGNED TO GET AWAY FROM IT ALL IN THE AGE OF COVID-19 Getting away from it all is a great way to reduce stress, but what’s a M

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Feb 112021

The Real Estate Closing Process in The Age of Covid

CRISTAL CLARKE’S SELLERS' GUIDE TO SUCCESS The first step in the real estate closing process, in times like these, is to hire a

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Feb 52021

The State Street Promenade: Santa Barbara Al Fresco

TIME AGAIN FOR GOOD FOOD, FRESH AIR AND FUN For the first time in more than two months, thanks to the reopening of the State Street Pr

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Feb 32021

Tips and Tricks for Organizing Your Kitchen — Again

GIVE A LITTLE EXTRA LOVE TO THE HEART OF YOUR MONTECITO HOME Every homeowner knows how easy it is for chaos to creep into the kitchen. Exp

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Jan 272021

Creating a Dog-friendly Home?

FROM MOVE-IN TO SETTLING IN: A TOP REALTOR'S GUIDE In recent years, dogs have become center stage in many homes. Even during times of conf

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Jan 222021

How to Create a Virtual Learning Space in Your Santa Barbara Home

7 KEYS TO BOOSTING LEARNING AT HOME The Coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic has created a roller coaster ride for school-age children living in Santa Bar

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Jan 192021

Looking Ahead to Post-Pandemic Relocation

WILL SANTA BARBARA HOME SELLERS BENEFIT? According to a new study revealing the trend toward post-pandemic relocation, about a third of U.

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Jan 172021

Do You Have a Revocable Trust?

THE PROS AND CONS FOR SANTA BARBARA HOMEOWNERS Let’s face it, estate planning is not necessarily fun, but it is definitely crit

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Jan 132021

What Does the Historic Low Home Inventory Mean for You?

BOOMING DEMAND IS DRIVING UP PRICES Demand for U.S. homes is driving the number of properties for sale to new lows in the United States. 

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Jan 62021

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

DON’T FORGET YOUR SANTA BARBARA HOME’S RESOLUTIONS! It’s that time of year when we break out our New Year’s resolutions

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Jan 42021

The Smart House: More Valuable in Today’s Market?

WHAT THE FUTURE HOLDS FOR SMART HOMES IN 2021 By now, every homeowner should know about the importance of integrating smart hou

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Dec 302020

7 Ways to Celebrate New Year’s Eve 2020 at Home in Santa Barbara

COUNT DOWN TO 2021 IN YOUR PAJAMAS New Year’s Eve 2020 will look a lot different than the celebration in past years. Even thoug

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Dec 272020

Housing Market Forecast: Predictions for 2021

HOME SALES, NEW CONSTRUCTION AND HOMEOWNERSHIP TO REACH RECORD HIGHS There’s a lot to be optimistic about when it comes to the 2021 hous

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Dec 212020

Tips on Buying a Home During the Holidays

6 REASONS WHY IT'S A GREAT TIME TO BUY A HOME Most people cringe at the thought of buying a home during the holidays. Only the Grinch wo

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Dec 192020

Tis the Season to Celebrate Christmas 2020 in Santa Barbara

WHAT TO DO, WHERE TO DINE AND LAST-MINUTE SHOPPING Happy holidays! Tis the season to celebrate Christmas 2020 in Santa Barbara. Don’t l

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Dec 172020

Selling Your Home During the Holidays?

HOW TO DECORATE WITHOUT TURNING OFF BUYERS Selling your home during the holidays? How to optimize that effort might be the most important

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Dec 102020

The 2020 Holidays: Celebrating Safely This Year

IMPORTANT STEPS TO STAY SAFE AND MITIGATE THE SPREAD Santa Barbara homeowners need to be especially careful during the 2020 holiday season

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Dec 32020

The Feng Shui House: Creating Balance and Flow in Your Santa Barbara Home

8 EASY WAYS TO IMPROVE THE ENERGY IN ANY ABODE The Chinese words "feng" and "shui" translate to mean “wind” and “water," respectiv

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Dec 12020

How to Celebrate Hanukkah 2020 Safely

EMBRACING THE FESTIVAL OF LIGHTS THIS YEAR WILL BE POSSIBLE, BUT DIFFERENT  The Festival of Lights runs from December 10 through December

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Nov 192020

Thanksgiving 2020: Tips for Enjoying a Safe Holiday

FOLLOWING CDC GUIDELINES IS IMPERATIVE Thanksgiving 2020 celebrations promise to be extremely different from past years, as the coronavir

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Nov 172020

The Increasing Popularity of the Multigenerational Home

NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS NOTES A SPIKE RELATED TO COVID-19 The annual Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers from the National Associa

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Nov 142020

2021 Color Trends: Soothing Hues Take Center Stage

SHADES SURE TO BE A CALMING INFLUENCE IN HOME DÉCOR The 2021 color trends follow a tradition of annual color predictions announced by pai

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Nov 42020

Timeless Interior Design Trends

SIMPLICITY, INDIVIDUALISM AND BALANCE ARE KEY COMPONENTS When it comes to timeless interior design trends, Montecito homeowners should embra

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Oct 262020

20 Things to Love About Santa Barbara

DID YOUR SANTA BARBARA FAVORITE MAKE THE LIST? It seems like a bit of a disservice to list only 20 things to love about Santa Barbara. Enu

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Oct 202020

Hygge and Friluftsliving: Danish Lifestyle Trends Embraced By Santa Barbara Homeowners

COZY ISN’T JUST AN ADJECTIVE, IT’S EVERYTHING The Danish lifestyle trends of hygge and friluftsliving fit perfectly here in Santa Barb

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Oct 152020

Wellness Living and Wellness Real Estate: The Next Trillion-Dollar Trend?

COVID-19 REVS UP INTEREST IN WELLNESS REAL ESTATE According to the Global Wellness Institute (GWI), thanks to COVID-19, the current emphas

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Oct 132020

Moving to a New Home: 6 Considerations for Families

SCHOOLS, SIDEWALKS, NEIGHBORS, AND MORE Moving to a new home can be a fun and exciting time for a family. Whether you’re moving with ch

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Oct 92020

Do You Have a Household or Family Disaster Plan?

THE AMERICAN RED CROSS SAYS “GET A KIT, MAKE A PLAN, BE INFORMED” Santa Barbara homeowners, along with the rest of the world, are

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Oct 62020

Your Fall Home: Décor Tips and Must-do Chores

PAMPER, PREPARE AND PROTECT YOUR MONTECITO HOME With the sunny weather here in Montecito it may not feel like it yet, but it’s that time

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Sep 222020

Open, Closed and Beyond: A Real Estate Pro’s Guide to Kitchen Design

CREATING THE KITCHEN OF YOUR DREAMS HAS NEVER BEEN EASIER If you’ve been pondering about the kitchen design of your dreams -- perhaps l

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Sep 172020

The Ultimate Guide to Creating an Eco-Friendly Home: Part 2

GREEN BUILDING AND MOVING I hope after reading Part 1 of my Going Green series you realize that getting on the right side of things when i

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Sep 152020

The Ultimate Guide to Creating an Eco-Friendly Home: Part 1

20 SIMPLE WAYS TO JOIN THE GREEN REVOLUTION It’s not surprising that more and more homeowners are going green in their everyday lives. T

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Sep 122020

The Art of Backyard Stargazing in Santa Barbara

INTERACTIVE, EDUCATIONAL, AND DOWNRIGHT COOL Santa Barbara and Montecito  are renowned for having perfect Mediterranean weather and miles

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Sep 92020

The Backyard Shed: Your New Home Office?

WHETHER OUT OF NECESSITY OR CONVENIENCE, A TREND IS BORN Sales of backyard sheds are spiking.  It seems more and more homeowners are need

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Aug 262020

Home Improvement: Repair, Remodel or Renovate?

A TOP REALTOR’S GUIDE FOR SANTA BARBARA AND MONTECITO HOMEOWNERS Americans spend $400 billion annually on remodeling their homes -- not

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Aug 212020

Harry and Meghan: Montecito’s Newest High-profile Residents

THE LIST OF CELEBRITY RESIDENTS IN THE PRIVILEGED ENCLAVE GROWS   Journalists from all over the world are reaching out to me abo

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Aug 192020

How Santa Barbara Homeowners Can Create a “Smart” Healthy Home

PURIFY · REJUVENATE · REFUEL · RECOVER Did you know that today’s new smart home tech can actually make you healthier by creating a h

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Aug 122020

The Santa Barbara Luxury Real Estate Market is Booming

LISTINGS LIKE MINE ARE KEEPING HOME VALUES HIGHER A limited supply of available properties along the South Coast of Santa Barbara County a

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Aug 62020

Thinking About Going Solar? A Primer for Santa Barbara and Montecito Homeowners

WHEN CONSIDERING THE SOLAR OPTION, A LITTLE KNOWLEDGE GOES A LONG WAY If you’re thinking about going solar, installing solar panels to y

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Aug 42020

Santa Barbara Landscape Design: Complementing Your Home’s Architecture


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Jul 312020

Ellen and Portia Burglarized: A Montecito Luxury Realtor’s Home Security Tips

WHAT EVERY SANTA BARBARA AND MONTECITO HOMEOWNER NEEDS TO KNOW In light of the alarming news about the burglary of Ellen DeGeneres and P

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Jul 242020

Santa Barbara Day Trips: Convenient, Safe and Sanity Savers


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Jul 212020

Lettuce Grow: More Than an Appeal from Veggies

GROW YOUR OWN FARM-FRESH PRODUCE FROM HOME WITH A HYDROPONIC “FARMSTAND” Okay, so that title is a bit “corny.” (That makes 3

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Jul 172020

Buying a Santa Barbara Home During a Pandemic

9 TACTICS TO GET YOUR MONTECITO OR SANTA BARBARA OFFER ACCEPTED As I stated in a previous blog post, the residential real estate luxur

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Jul 142020

7 Tips for Creating Your Own Safe Haven


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Jul 92020

Time to Plan Your Summer Staycation

TIPS ON MAKING YOUR SUMMER STAYCATION FEEL LIKE A REAL VACATION Santa Barbara homeowners craving a much-needed getaway are in luck. Even i

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Jul 72020

Preparing Your Santa Barbara Home For Sale


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Jun 282020

Is a Real Estate Boom on the Horizon for Montecito?

EXPERTS ARE SAYING IT WILL BE A GREAT TIME TO BUY OR SELL Is the summer of 2020 the right time to buy or sell a Montecito home? Is a sort

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Jun 172020

Father’s Day 2020: Trivia, Trifles and Things to Do in Santa Barbara

TRADITIONALLY A DAY COMBINING REVERENCE, REMEMBRANCE, RESPECT AND FUN What is the official flower of Father’s Day? As it is with Mother

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Jun 162020

5 Iconic Santa Barbara Estates


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Jun 42020

Residential Real Estate: Luxury Segment Thriving Post-Shutdown

CONFIDENCE AMONG HIGH-END SELLERS LEADS TO V-SHAPED RECOVERY According to analysis from the Dow Jones Market Data Team, the residential real

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Jun 12020

Shop and Dine Along the NEW Santa Barbara State Street Promenade

A WELCOME CHANGE FOR BUSINESS OWNERS, RESIDENTS, AND VISITORS Santa Barbara’s State Street has been transformed into a welcoming Ped

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May 282020

Who Says Fun Games to Play Outside Are Just for Kids?

10 LAWN GAMES SANTA BARBARA HOMEOWNERS OF ANY AGE CAN ENJOY Warmer days mean homeowners want to get outside and safely enjoy Sant

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May 252020

Montecito Realtor Cristal Clarke in the News


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May 222020

California Volunteers: A Vital New Program for Our Time


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May 212020

Moving During the Pandemic: 7 Steps to Doing it Safely

HOW TO KEEP YOUR FAMILY HEALTHY BEFORE, DURING AND AFTER THAT MOVE TO A NEW HOME Are you considering moving during the pandemic? In a rece

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May 152020

COVID-19: Montecito and Santa Barbara Non-Profits Respond

The Organizations Aiding Our Most Vulnerable People and Pets Need Our Support It can be incredibly overwhelming to figure out where to focu

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May 122020

Celebrity Living in Santa Barbara


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May 82020

Santa Barbara Economy: The County Begins to Reopen

LIGHT AT THE END OF THE COVID-19 TUNNEL? After spending almost 8 weeks basically shut down, the Santa Barbara economy is beginning to reop

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May 72020

Montecito’s 93108 Zip Code: Consistently One of Forbes Richest

IT'S A PRIVILEGED ENCLAVE EXUDING AN UNPARALLELED AMBIANCE OF CASUAL LUXURY The affluent community of Montecito, with its equally prestigi

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Apr 292020

Santa Barbara Housing Market: Home Prices in the Shadow of COVID-19

WRITER SUSAN HARTZLER’S Q & A WITH TOP MONTECITO REALTOR CRISTAL CLARKE It seems like everyone is wondering how COVID-19 is affectin

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Apr 232020

Reopening Santa Barbara’s Economy: Pondering and Preparing

COUNTY OFFICIALS SHARE TACTICS FOR SLOWLY REOPENING THE AMERICAN RIVIERA® Are you among the locals who are growing restless about reopeni

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Apr 172020

Santa Barbara Earth Day 2020: You Are Invited!

THE FESTIVAL MUST GO ON! This year, 2020, marks the 50th anniversary of the Environmental movement and the creation of Earth Day. While C

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Apr 162020

The Richness of Santa Barbara History

HOW SANTA BARBARA BECAME INFUSED WITH THE SPIRIT OF SPAIN The founders of the City of Santa Barbara were among the first in the nation

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Apr 82020

Santa Barbara Yoga Studios in the Age of COVID-19

YOGA MEETS ZOOM The gifts of yoga are needed more today than ever before. But while Santa Barbara yoga studios stand empty, a rapid underg

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Apr 32020

Santa Barbara and Montecito Landscape Design

MAKE SURE YOUR LANDSCAPING COMPLEMENTS YOUR HOME An architectural style is a specific way a building was designed that is characterized by

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Mar 252020

8 Steps to Creating the Minimalist Home Office

MINIMIZE PROCRASTINATION AND MAXIMIZE PRODUCTIVITY For most Montecito homeowners, their home is their castle. Today, your abode can also be

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Mar 172020

12 Things To Do When You’re Confined to Your Home

SELF-CARE IN SECLUSION CAN MEAN FOOD AND FUN FOR BODY AND SOUL What’s a Montecito or Santa Barbara homeowner supposed to do when at home

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Mar 112020

Selling a Montecito Home: A Few Things to Consider


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Mar 72020

Selling Luxury Real Estate in Santa Barbara

7 TIPS TO “SOLD” IN THE LUXURY MARKET Selling Luxury Real Estate in Santa Barbara requires a different approach than that used when se

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Feb 262020

Montecito: Best Place to Live in the Santa Barbara Area

LOCATION RANKING WEBSITE NICHE.COM NAMES MONTECITO #1 Those of us who call Montecito home know it is one of the best places to live in Cal

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Feb 12020

Luxury Bunkers: Time to Invest in a Private Shelter?


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Jan 242020

Secrets to Making a Home Guest-ready

7 WAYS TO MAKE YOUR MONTECITO HOME INVITING Are you aware of the top must-dos when it comes to making a home guest-ready? Dinner parties

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Dec 312019

2020 Brings New California Laws

INCLUDING ONE WRITTEN BY SANTA BARBARA SENATOR HANNAH-BETH JACKSON There are hundreds of new California laws set to go into effect in

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Dec 252019

Mid-Century Modern Furniture Fan?

WHERE TO FIND IT IN SANTA BARBARA The enduring popularity of Mid-Century Modern furniture is based on many factors. It gives us clean lines,

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Dec 202019

Running Trails in Santa Barbara: 8 of the Most Popular

GET OFF ON THE RIGHT (OR LEFT) FOOT IN 2020! Why not make 2020 your year to explore the wonderful running trails in Santa Barbara? After all

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Dec 132019

New Book Unveils Who Shaped America’s Love of Modern Architecture

THE PHOTOGRAPHER WHO MADE MODERNISM SING We all are aware that architects shape buildings, but have you ever wondered who shapes the way we

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Dec 112019

Sleep Deprivation: Causes, Cures and the Mesmerizing Magic of Montecito

A COMPREHENSIVE LOOK AT THE AFFLICTION PLAGUING MANY OF US No matter where you live, sleep is the foundation of mental wellness, even for th

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Dec 92019

4 Elements of Real Estate Asset Protection

DO YOU HAVE A PLAN FOR LEGAL SECURITY OF YOUR PROPERTY?  You should. Consider this: the value of your real estate holdings may be signifi

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Nov 292019

Downsizing Your Home: 5 Signs It Might Be Time

BALANCING THE SENTIMENTAL WITH THE PRACTICAL Is it time for downsizing your home? I recently posted a guest blog, “Downsizing for Senior

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Nov 262019

What is an iBuyer in Real Estate?

IS AN iBUYER A GOOD CHOICE FOR YOU?  “Instant offer” or iBuyer programs are grabbing so much attention these days in the real estate in

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Nov 72019

Create a High-Tech Home for the Holidays

5 GADGETS TO MAKE YOUR MONTECITO HOME HOLIDAY READY There are a bunch of high-tech home gadgets out there designed to help Montecito homeown

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Nov 12019

Want a Master Suite Sanctuary?

4 DESIGN TIPS TO TRANSFORM YOUR MASSIVE MASTER         One of the things I love about many of the Montecito homes listed in my port

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Oct 242019

Is Your Baby Sleeping in a SNOO Bassinet?

THIS $1,300 BABY BED MIGHT BE THE ANSWER FOR SLEEP-DEPRIVED MONTECITO PARENTS New parents have so many things to consider when th

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Oct 222019

Downsizing for Seniors

MAKE YOUR MOVE AS STRESS-FREE AS POSSIBLE This post regarding downsizing for seniors was written by Guest Blogger Shirley Martin. Recently,

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Oct 152019

A Luxury Realtor’s Guide to Home Security Systems

WHAT EVERY SANTA BARBARA HOMEOWNER NEEDS TO KNOW We are all aware of the importance of home security systems these days. Every 14.5 seconds,

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Oct 32019

Real Estate Investing: Still the Best Choice Anyone Can Make

SEE WHY 4 MILLIONAIRES AGREE Over the last two centuries, about 90% of the world’s millionaires have created their wealth through real estate i

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Sep 262019

Mantel Magic: It’s Easier Than You Think

5 DÉCOR TIPS FOR A FABULOUS FIREPLACE   Even here in sunny Santa Barbara, homeowners want to welcome the new fall season by sprucing up their hom

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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

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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

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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

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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 t

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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

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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

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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

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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.

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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

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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

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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 su

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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 inte

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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 f

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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 indoo

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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 appr

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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 Wes

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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.

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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

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Jun 42019

Buying a Home in a Buyer’s Market

EXPERTS SAY GATHER DATA AND UNDERSTAND SELLERS’ MOTIVATIONS  As a follow-up to a recent blog post, I’m going to look at how buying a ho

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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

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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 wi

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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 thoug

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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, especial

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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

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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 h

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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

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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

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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 invest

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Mar 142019

Santa Barbara Applauds Women’s History Month


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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 Go

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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 experi

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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

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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 th

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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).

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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

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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

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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 conside

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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 weal

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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 – i

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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 arou

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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

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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 sc

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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 scientis

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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 y

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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 creat

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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 Com

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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 co

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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 i

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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 othe

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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. D

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Oct 302018

Selling 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

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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 B

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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 i

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Oct 122018

Aging at Home in Santa Barbara

6 WAYS TO ADAPT YOUR HOME AS YOUR NEEDS CHANGE As our population continues to get older, aging at home becomes more and more important. Sc

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Oct 102018

Hiding The Children’s Mess While Selling Your Montecito Home

HIDE IT IN PLAIN SIGHT! My busy clients know, hiding the children's mess when selling their Montecito home can be a major challenge. The

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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 healt

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Sep 272018

Fiscal Fitness: The Advantages of Investing in Your Health

THE FITNESS INDUSTRY JOINS THE WORLD OF FINANCE Fiscal fitness is a piece of financial advice that is nothing to scoff about. It’s real. By inves

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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? ranks Santa Barbara, aka the American Rivera, number 30 in the top

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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 se

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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 soa

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Aug 292018

Master Bath Renovation: 4 Reasons To Do It Now

A MASTER BATH RENOVATION ADDS VALUE TO YOUR HOME, AND MUCH MORE There are many reasons homeowners decide to begin a master bath renovation

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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 h

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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

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Aug 22018

7 Things You Can Do to Conserve Water: The California Drought is not over!

When the temps rise, so does our water usage, quickly evaporating our efforts to conserve water due to the California drought Remember all the good 

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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 in

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Jul 242018

Top 4 “Real Estate Facts” Debunked


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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 es

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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

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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

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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 acces

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Jul 32018

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

HOW TO SET YOURSELF UP FOR SUCCESS When you adopt a dog, you can expect loads of unconditional love along with unwanted hair, dirt, and slob

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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

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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 buyin

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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

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Jun 122018

Indoor Rock Climbing at the Santa Barbara Rock Gym


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Jun 112018

Tips for Moving with Children

Guest post by Alexis Hall, author of Moving is an important step in any family’s life. It can be stressful and exciting

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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

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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 ho

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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 Arc

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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 ev

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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 St

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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:

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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 gen

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Apr 192018

How to Integrate A Dog Shower into Your Home

8EXPERT TIPS FOR DESIGNING A DEDICATED SHOWER FOR YOUR DOG  Last week, I blogged about renovations popular among home buyers today: like

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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 Indi

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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 homeowne

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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 no

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Mar 132018

Things to Do in Santa Barbara this Spring

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

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Feb 262018

Smart Speakers: Which One is Right for You?

WHAT TO LOOK FOR IN SMART SPEAKERS If you haven't already jumped on the smart speaker bandwagon, then listen up. These devices work just fin

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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

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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

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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 hir

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Dec 202017

6 Steps to Protect Your Home from Wildfires

PREPARATION IS KEY TO PREVENTING YOUR HOME FROM GOING UP IN SMOKE Do you know how to protect your home from wildfires? If you live in Sant

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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

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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 wh

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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 be

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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 post, I discussed how home seller

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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 m

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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 da

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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 a

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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 post, I shared that

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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 the

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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

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Oct 22017

Is it Time for a New Front Door Color?

Check out 8 front door colors trending today Front doors have the twin purpose of inviting people in and keeping people out. A quality doo

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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 com

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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

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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 abo

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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 Ti

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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 t

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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 Bar

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Aug 182017

What Is The Best Color for Sleep?

PAINT COLORS THAT PROMOTE A BETTER NIGHT'S SLEEP Have you ever wondered what is the best color for sleep? After all, every perfectly seren

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Aug 102017

These are the Dog Days When it Comes to Millennial Homeownership

MILLENNIALS MOVE OUT FOR THEIR PETS I just read a story in Realty Times about a surge in Millennial homeownership. According to a new surv

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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

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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'

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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 he

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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 b

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Jun 132017

Considering Buying a Vacation Home? Read This First!

7 TRUTHS ABOUT VACATION HOME OWNERSHIP According to a story in the Wall Street Journal, although the economy is firming up, interest rates a

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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

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May 262017

The Montaña Magica Treehouse; A Magical Vacation Destination

This magical vacation spot in the Chilean Patagonian Rainforest Should Be on Your Bucket List! Introducing the "Magic Mountain" Treehouse

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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 to

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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 su

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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 Bar

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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

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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 cookw

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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 pla

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Jan 102017

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

THE IMPORTANCE OF CREATING GOOD VIBES AT HOME Ask yourself, "How does my home feel?" Is it your personal space filled with negative ener

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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 con

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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 thro

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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 whe

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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, this great American meal doesn't have to bring on anx

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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

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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 Hal

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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

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Oct 182016

4 Steps to Protect Yourself From Identity Theft

I just read this article in about Identity theft; with four important steps to protect yourself from being part of a hack.

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Oct 112016

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

MAKING SURE EVERYONE FEELS MERRY AND BRIGHT! You know that extended family and friends will be descending on your home this November and Dec

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Sep 292016

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

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, renovati

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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 San

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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 w

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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

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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: f

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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

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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, esp

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Jun 12016

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

EDUCATE YOURSELF ON DOG BREEDS You love your dog, but don't expect your homeowners' insurance company to share the feeling. Some insurance

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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 opene

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May 32016

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

As I explained in a previous post, there is so much to do here in sunny Santa Barbara, including one of my all-time favorite activities: sea kayak

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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 rec

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Apr 52016

Aging Gracefully in Your Home: New Architecture Designed to Help

I just read an article in about new architecture designed to help homeowners age gracefully. The article takes a look at the philosophy a

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Mar 312016

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

I just read an article in regarding ZOE, a new crowdfunded device by Protonet designed to offer data security like no other in today'

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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

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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 s

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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 tha

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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 conside

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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'

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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 s

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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

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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 v

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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

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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, prot

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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. O

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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 bui

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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 Medi

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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

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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, th

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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 professiona

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Aug 182015

Tips on Incorporating Your Travels Into Your Home Decor

MASTERPIECE OF MEMORIES Home décor is a topic I frequently blog about. Today, I'm going to share tips on incorporating your travels into

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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 vie

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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 es

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Jul 162015

Backyard pools are going to the dogs

DOES YOUR DOG HAVE ITS OWN POOL? It's not that surprising that today's backyard pools are going to the dogs but a pool built especially fo

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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 dreade

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Jun 182015

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

I've dedicated a lot of posts to your home's interior design style. Today I ask: Are you losing yourself for the sake of being on trend? According to

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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

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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 t

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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 y

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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 Wal

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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, m

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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

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Mar 242014

Your Home’s Handles and Knobs: Handsome or Haggard?

Whether you're selling your home or staying put, a great way of boosting your home's attractiveness and sale-ability is by repairing or replacing door

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