Top 8 for ICNY 2018

1. Make a hit list of the people you want to meet “in real life.” Connect is an amazing time to solidify some of those online relationships and connect with people who you admire and respect and make that true emotional connection. Some of the connections I have made at Connect have become lifelong friends of mine. They are the ones I call when I need advice and encouragement. Remember this quote from GaryV“People are not addicted to social media. People are addicted to people.”  Some of my favorite folks include 👉 Vanessa Jones Bergmark, Sara Sutachan, Seth Price, Andrew Flachner, Alyssa Hellman, Lynn Johnson, Rob Hahn, Laura BradyChris Smith, Jimmy Mackin, Matthew Shadbolt, Leigh Brown, Bill Lublin, Celeste Starchild, Katie Lance, Debra Trappen, Valerie Garcia, Joe Schutt, Jay Thompson, Heather Elias, Laura Monroe, Audie Chamberlain and so many others….

2.  Attend as many sessions as you can possibly attend! DO NOT MISS ANYTHING. Specifically look for the sessions that pull you out of your comfort zone and will challenge you on a personal & professional level. See the full schedule here and meet the speakers here. This year…OMG 😳… Simon Sinek will be the Keynote and will be kicking off the festivities on the main stage at 8:55 am on Wednesday, January 24th. One of my favorite quotes from Simon Sinek that is totally in line with ICNY is, “Always plan for the fact that no plan ever goes according to plan.” Bonus: Please please please do not miss CAR’s #womanup on main stage on Wednesday at 11:45am moderated by Sara Sutachan.

3. Have you joined the Inman Coast to Coast Facebook Group? If not join here for all the latest posts, connections and updates.

4.  The Party after the Party! Do I need to say anymore? We all know the real fun starts after 10 pm! So just ask around, jump in an Uber (download app here) or Lyft (download app here) and find out where the action is. Check your email for last minute invites to all the happening VIP parties and events. If you still can not find the party make sure to DM Chalmers or Carp (they will steer you in the right direction, I promise). If you are looking for the 🎤 top-secret karaoke party then there is only one name you should know 👉 Notorious.

5. Lobbycon! You have heard all the rumors and it is true! You will find everyone in The Broadway Lounge & Bar on the 8th floor of the Marriott and this is the spot where you will meet the CEO’s, Founders, Presidents, movers & shakers all just “hanging out.” Bring your selfie stick & business cards and make sure to say hi. BTW, when is the next time you will be in the same hotel as Brad Inman, Sherry Chris, Sharran Shrivatsaa, Joel Singer, Leslie Appleton Young & Elizabeth Mendenhall.

6.  Get out into the city! New York is an amazingly gorgeous city with sights, sounds, history and killer food! And since our team at The Boutique Real Estate Group are total foodies check out this list of 100 Best Restaurants in New York City via Zagat. Or if you love to fly and want to get up in the air check out FlyNYON for a helicopter tour of the city. Hamilton! Enough said!

7. Stay fit! You will be eating, drinking & sitting in a lot of sessions. Make sure to stay fit at one of these locations: Peleton NYC, Soul Cycle, SOLACE Cross Fit, Core Power Yoga and Orange Theory are all amazing ways to keep the burn going while at ICNY.

8. Ambassadors. These are the ones who will lead us through ICNY. Joe Schutt & Laure Weston Davis have been “in charge” of this program for years now and if you have a question about anything ICNY these are the folks to ask. Have you met them? If not connect with them here.

If you made it this far and are headed to ICNY please find me in one of the sessions, lobbycon or at one of the after parties. I am currently slotted to speak at three sessions at ICNY this year so it would be amazing to connect with you!

@rajqsar

@TheBoutiqueRE

@SeriouslyOC

@CounterclockwiseSwirl

No End in Sight for Toll Brothers’ Luxe Push in OC

Toll Brothers Inc. is adding another high-end housing development to its Orange County portfolio.

Its latest addition, a 47-lot site in Yorba Linda, will likely be one of its highest-priced local communities, which is saying something for the Horsham, Pa.-based builder, whose local developments’ homes top $2 million.

The builder, whose market value is about $8 billion, recently reached a deal to buy the Stonecliff Estates development site in Yorba Linda, roughly 30 acres on the northwest corner of Lakeview Avenue and Bastanchury Road. It’s a little more than a mile northeast of the Richard Nixon Museum and Library.

The site was listed for sale a few months ago by Sal Provenza and Curt Crandall at the Irvine office of land brokerage WD Land.

It traded hands for about $44 million, a little under $1.5 million per acre, or nearly $940,000 per lot, among the highest per-lot prices for an OC housing development site not along the coast.

The land was technically bought by an undisclosed land banking firm that will sell the lots to Toll Brothers in phases, according to Provenza.

Stonecliff Estates has been in the works for nearly a decade and was sold by an entity listed in marketing documents as Bastanchury Holding Co. LP.

The sellers are affiliated with Kuwait Finance House, a large Islamic banking firm that was one of the initial equity investors in the development, according to Provenza. The property is believed to be its only OC land investment; it also has some commercial property holdings in the Los Angeles area, he said.

Toll Brothers, which bills itself as the country’s largest luxury homes builder, is no stranger to Yorba Linda (or OC, where it’s now selling at 16 different projects), and has built a few developments in the city over the past three years.

Its latest, the 119-unit Enclave project, is about a half-mile from the recently bought property. It opened last year with prices near $2 million, and was about half sold as of a few months ago, according to brokerage data.

Stonecliff Estates will likely have a higher price point, thanks to some of the largest lot sizes—about a half-acre, or a little more than 20,000 square feet—for a recent OC housing development.

Most of Toll Brothers’ other area luxe homes in Irvine and other parts of OC have lots in the 6,000- to 12,000-square-foot range. Its Alta Vista development in Irvine’s Orchard Hills community, for example, with some homes priced at nearly $3 million, has lots of about 11,000 square feet, according to WD Land.

Homes at Stonecliff Estates were envisioned to be a little more than 4,000 square feet to nearly 6,000 square feet on the half-acre lots under the prior ownership group’s proposed designs, which Toll will likely tweak.

A community opening should be in about nine months, according to WD Land’s Provenza, who previously worked on land acquisitions for Toll Brothers.

Record Year, Rents

Apartment construction in OC is projected to reach an all-time record this year, according to a new multifamily research report by the local office of Marcus & Millichap.

Nearly 7,500 units will be completed at large apartment projects across the county, a record level and one that will increase OC’s base of rentals by 3%, the report said.

The heavy development is having a slight impact on vacancy rates, which have ticked up to 4%. But that hasn’t slowed rental appreciation, which has also risen 4%. Average monthly rents now stand at $1,972.

Construction should keep pushing on into next year. There were nine apartment projects with more than 300 units under way in Anaheim and Irvine combined at the start of the fourth quarter, and two projects, each larger than 500 units, were going up in Huntington Beach, the report said.

Marvelous Mansion

Screen Shot 2017-12-14 at 8.24.44 AM (1)Via Kim Haman / Orange County Business Journal

December 4th, 2017

The home at 22570 Hidden Hills Road in Yorba Linda sold on Nov. 1 for $6.1 million, coming in under its $7.5 million list price in May. The sale represented the highest ever in the city. Nestled onto a private, 3.1-acre ridgetop lot, the estate features views that stretch to the ocean on the horizon. The 8,320-square-foot, contemporary-style home, formerly owned by the executive chef of Yardhouse Restaurants, Carlito Jocson, includes a restaurant caliber kitchen with Viking appliances, a large Subzero refrigerator and an adjacent 1,200- bottle, temperature-controlled wine storage room. Outdoors, there’s another full-service kitchen featuring an ample bar-seating area and wood-fired pizza oven. There are five bedrooms and six baths, as well as a 13-person theater and a billiards room, and a whole-home Crestron system. The grounds include a basketball court, full outdoor bath, and space for a helipad. The home was designed by DKY Architects’ David Streshinsky. Raj Qsar and Christina Boladian of The Boutique Real Estate Group represented the seller, and Edward Englehart of First Team Real Estate worked on behalf of the buyer.

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Now Hiring Buyers Agent

💥 My team is excited to announce we are expanding. We are looking for a motivated 🏡 Realtor who wants to join my personal real estate team. Needs to have a RE License, work weekdays/nights & weekends, love technology, have a very flexible schedule and is super outgoing. We will train you on everything. If you know anyone who is looking to start a career in real estate or if they are in real estate but not doing what they feel like they can do please have them apply here 👉 www.JoinTheBoutique.com and to learn more about our company please visit 👉 www.TheBoutiqueRE.com ☺️

BuyersAgent-ListingAssistant

2017 REAL Trends Finalist for Best Overall Website
2017 Inman News Innovator Award for Most Innovative Brokerage
2017 Inman News Real Estate Influencer Of The Year
2016 Top 100 Real Estate Influencers on Social Media
2016 Inman News Innovator Award for Most Innovative Brokerage
2016 SP 200 The Most Powerful People In Residential Real Estate
2015 Inman News Innovator Award for Most Innovative Technology
2015 Top 33 People Changing The Real Estate Industry
2014 Best Real Estate Video of The Year
2014 Inman News Innovator Award for Most Innovative Real Estate Agent
2014 Next Generation Real Estate Brokerage
2014 Top 100 Most Influential Real Estate Leaders in The USA
2013 Top 100 Most Influential Real Estate Leaders in The USA
2013 Top 20 Real Estate Videos in The USA

Trump tax plan unveiled, wealthy homeowners to pay more

BY JOTHAM SEDERSTROM, Inman News

In a dramatic departure from a preliminary tax reform plan unveiled earlier this year, the latest draft of what’s been dubbed the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, authored by House Ways and Means Chairman Kevin Brady, would limit the mortgage interest deduction to new and existing loans of $500,000 and under, down from $1 million, and cap property tax deductions at $10,000.

Released Thursday to members of Congress, the revised proposal would disproportionately impact high-earning homeowners reeling from high property taxes on the West Coast and Northeast while potentially reducing the incentive for millions of Americans to buy new homes.

The Trump administration’s original tax framework included a proposal that would potentially jeopardize homeowners with a $70 billion annual tax expenditure by doubling the standard tax deduction, housing experts warned at the time.

The latest reform plan raises the standard deduction from $12,700 to $24,400 (married), $9,350 to $18,300 (head of household), and $6,350 to $12,200 (single), the Wall Street Journal reported.

“One of the major advantages of homeownership is that deduction, and if people choose not to use it because of the doubling of the standard deduction, it will remove, to a degree, the incentive to buy a home, said Matthew Gardner, chief economist at Windermere Real Estate, citing numbers by the Tax Institute Center that project that the percent of filers claiming the deduction would plummet from 21 percent to just 4 percent should the bill become law.

The revised proposal, meanwhile, would maintain a plan to reduce the tax rate on limited liability companies and other so-called pass-through entities to 25 percent, but would be limited to passive owners, leaving principal investors with a blended top tax rate of 35 percent.

As new details of President Trump’s tax code reform gradually came to light Thursday, real estate industry trade groups cautiously doubled down on earlier criticisms of the proposal.

“We are currently reviewing the details of the tax proposal released today, but at first glance it appears to confirm many of our biggest concerns about the Unified Framework,” said  National Association of Realtors President William Brown in a statement to Inman News.

“Eliminating or nullifying the tax incentives for homeownership puts home values and middle class homeowners at risk, and from a cursory examination this legislation appears to do just that,” Brown added. “We will have additional details upon a more thorough reading of the bill.”

The mortgage cap and limited property tax deductions threaten to jeopardize high-income taxpayers with expensive homes, according to the Wall Street Journal. The plan also maintains the top bracket of 39.6 percent for high-income households and would phases out the estate tax, which includes estates worth approximately $5 million or more, according to the report.

For professional services firms — a definition that could extend to include real estate brokerages in addition to law firm and financial advisers — the proposed 25-percent pass-through rate may no longer apply, as the default rate would be considered 100-percent labor income.

“This bill leaves too many small businesses behind,” said Juanita Duggan, CEO of the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB), in a statement. “We are concerned that the pass-through provision does not help most small businesses. Small business is the engine of the economy. We believe that tax reform should provide substantial relief to all small businesses, so they can reinvest their money, grow, and create jobs.”

Aaron Lesher, CPA and head of customer success at Hurdlr, said he “tends to agree” with the NFIB that the new rates don’t do enough to help small businesses, but he sees where real estate professionals may still be able to benefit from the changes.

“Even though real estate agents could be considered professional service providers, the nature of their brokerage relationship is usually that of an independent contractor,” Lesher said. “Since real estate brokerages don’t typically withhold taxes for their agents or provide many benefits outside marketing, and agents are still responsible for business expenses and taxes, agents would still be viewed as businesses and be able to claim the 25 percent treatment.”

Short on details and broad in scope, the earlier proposal, negotiated over several months among a group known as “The Big Six,” including Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin, National Economic Director Gary Cohn and top House and Senate Republicans, would have lowered corporate rates from 35 to 20 percent while slashing the number of personal tax brackets from seven to three.

The revised plan holds true to the corporate rate of 20 percent, but breaks down the tax brackets into four groups rather than three: 12 percent, 25 percent, 35 percent and 39.6 percent, according to the Wall Street Journal.

Editor’s note: This story has been updated with additional details about the tax plan.

Yard House top chef sells Yorba Linda estate for record $6.095 million

via OCregister

carlito-jocson-and-house-fi

Carlito Jocson, the top chef for Yard House restaurants, has sold his modern, 8,320-square-foot house on three acres in Yorba Linda for $6.095 million. www.22750HiddenHillsRd.com

That sets a record for the most expensive home sale ever in the city, according to the Multiple Listing Service.

The house, on one of Orange County’s highest peaks, hit the market in September 2016 for $10 million. The price dropped to $8.688 million in February 2017 and $7.5 million in May.

The estate includes a full-size outdoor kitchen with a bar and wood-fired pizza oven. Flanking a zero-edge swimming pool are two glass-tiled fire pits. A meditation garden with more than a dozen olive trees and a disappearing entertainment system are among the outdoor features.

Inside, the solar-powered house has a restaurant-caliber kitchen, 1,200-bottle wine room and a home theater.

Jocson was one of the Yard House’s original founders and went on to become a vice president and the corporate executive chef.

Raj Qsar and Christina Boladian of The Boutique Real Estate Group co-listed the house; Edward Englehart and Leslie Cole of First Team Real Estate represented the buyers.

 

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Wall Street Journal Home of The Day, A Lemon Farm in Orange County

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Location: 27112 Highland Dr, San Juan Capistrano, CA Price: $11,888,888

Spanning two lots, this property in San Juan Capistrano, Calif., comes with a Mediterranean-style mansion and 430 lemon trees.

By: Sarah Tilton, Wall Street Journal

Dorian Knape looked at 70 houses before she and her husband, Jim, found this property in San Juan Capistrano, Calif. ‘We had been looking for a couple of years for a unique property in Orange County that would give us ocean views and privacy,’ she says. The couple paid $5.5 million in 2007 for the more than 5-acre property. They then embarked on a multi-year remodel of the house, the guesthouse, the six-car garage and the garden. ‘It’s in town—you’re not in the middle of nowhere,’ says Mrs. Knape, adding that it is about a five-minute drive to the freeway. The couple took the approximately 9,800-square-foot Mediterranean-style main house down to the studs. ‘I wanted it to be timeless,’ says Mrs. Knape. The family moved into the home in 2010.

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Mrs. Knape estimates they have put approximately $8 million into the two-lot property. On the second lot, which was recently rezoned agricultural, they planted 430 lemon trees, she says. An accountant by training, Mrs. Knape started a medical device company with her husband and more recently started Pucker Urban Farm. Along with fresh lemons, she sells individually packaged drink shots called Mrs. Pucker’s Lemon Shot. They are made by squeezing the juice from the lemon and the peel as ‘the power is in the peel,’ she says.

‘It’s been a great family home,’ says Mrs. Knape. The outdoor loggia, shown here, has a coffered ceiling with built-in heaters. ‘You go through our gate and you don’t realize you’re in a city anymore,’ says Mrs. Knape. The property has a saltwater pool with ocean views. A sport-court is now a staging area for the lemon business. ‘It’s been a labor of love,’ she says of the lemon farm. They added a full outdoor kitchen with a dishwasher and a pizza oven. The chandelier in the entry and the railing on the staircase were among the few original details that the couple preserved. The walls in the entry are Venetian plaster.

27112Highland_TBREG_Floorplans

The main house has five bedrooms, six full baths and two half baths. The master suite includes a 308-square-foot closet. ‘It’s a sanctuary,’ says Mrs. Knape. The master bath, shown here, is 420 square feet. The fireplace in the library, shown here, was originally in the living room. Mrs. Knape added the burl-wood panelling. The living room is Mrs. Knape’s favorite space in the house. ‘You can go in there and look out at the formal garden. It’s very serene, and you can open up all the doors and walk out to the backyard,’ she says. There is a player piano in the living room which she says she designed around the Christopher Guy settee. The formal dining room looks out at the pool and the ocean. ‘The theater was [a] focal point,’ says Mrs. Knape. ’The kids come home and they use the theater with their friends.’

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A glass wall separates the wine tasting room from the temperature-controlled cellar. The couple also renovated the approximately 1,000-square-foot, one-bedroom, one-bath guesthouse. The couple also added a gym. The couple are selling as their children are grown and they are planning on downsizing. Mrs. Knape says she will miss the serenity and the privacy. ‘I’s like you’re in your own world,’ she says. Mrs. Knape is 59 years old; Mr. Knape is 55.

The home has an asking price of $11,888,888, a nod to Chinese numerology, which considers eight a lucky number. Raj Qsar and Christina Boladian of The Boutique Real Estate Group share the listing.

Link to WSJ Article.

Link to Property Website.

Top 30 Real Estate Brokerages On Social Media

via Property Spark

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These real estate brokerages are reaching thousands of people by using the power of social media.

Before, going into the list, we would like to say that these real estate brokerages do not have to be our clients, subscribers or followers.

Furthermore, we did not solicit any real estate brokerages before the research or writing of the lists.

Here’s how the Real Estate Brokerages are selected:

Initial Research on Real Estate Brokerages

We looked at hundreds of popular Real Estate Brokerages across North America. We found these real estate brokerages through different mediums including:

• Google
• Bing
• Facebook Search
• Instagram Search
• Twitter Search

Inclusions and Ranking (Objective Data)

Once we had our list of popular real estate brokerages. We looked at objective data regarding the real estate brokerages’ social media presence, including the following:

Followers:
• Facebook Page Likes
• Instagram Followers
• Twitter Followers

Engagement:
• Facebook Post likes, comments, shares and views (for videos)
• Instagram Post likes and comments
• Twitter favorites and retweets

Inclusions and Ranking (Subjective Data)

Finally, we make sure that all the real estate brokerages who made the final 30 have a great social media presence based on subjective variables, including the following:

• Brand image (quality of graphic design, pictures, videos)
• Value of content (how useful the content is to followers)
• Content mix (the mix of different types of posts)

With that being said, let’s get into the top list! Enjoy!

#10: The Boutique Real Estate Group

“Inspired by purpose, driven by passion”; that’s a motto we definitely want to hear from a real estate brokerage company. The Boutique Real Estate Group knows how to engage their followers on social media as they provide luxurious and dreamy photos of property interiors and exteriors.

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The Real Estate Unlist: People, places and things I’m thankful for

 

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An inspired ode to the industry by Brad Inman September 6th, 2017.

A new grandchild and the tragic events unfolding in Houston have me feeling overwhelmed with emotion and gratitude.

Meanwhile I have been re-reading novels by Eve Babitz, one of my favorite writers who in the 1960s and ’70s wrote about the cultural milieu of Los Angeles and touched on the topics of social unrest, wildfires and earthquakes. An entertaining and poetic acknowledgments section precedes her classic 1974 novel Eve’s Hollywood.

Babitz’s lyrical structure and this collision of thoughts and events inspired me to write about a few of my favorite things (and characters) gracing our wacky industry.

Let’s call this my 2017 Acknowledgements Unlist.

To Mary & Peter homebuyer

But also to the bank that made them a loan and to the escrow company that recorded their sale

And to the agent and the search portal that helped them find a house

And to Richard Smith and the American flag pin on his lapel

And to the single-family house

And to Glenn Kelman and Robert Reffkin for spilling a tray of Big Gulp sodas all over the industry

And to role models Marsha RandEbby Halliday and Helen Hanna Caseywhen the ceiling was fierce

And to the mighty — Bill FoleyAdi TatarkoPat StoneHoward LorberRich BartonWarren BuffettLloyd Frink and Rupert Murdoch

And to the Toto toilet

And to Opendoor’s Eric Wu for the wit to use a sledgehammer

And to a life-in-full Dave Liniger with his pony-sized dog Max and ankle pistol

And to central air conditioning and to Wi-Fi

And to be Sherry Chris

And to FEMA and to flood insurance

And to the reassuring voices of Duane LeGate and Jim Walberg

And to industry writers Teresa Boardman and Sam DeBord

And to real estate’s Oprah Katie Lance

And to the front porch and the gas range

And to Hale Bob and vice versa

And to tussling with NAR

And to America’s first housing leaders Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt

And to Gary Keller and the entire state of Texas

And to raucous debates about the fate of the MLS, the plight of brokers, instant offers, commission compression, FSBOs and disintermediation

And to the 30-year mortgage

And to great expectations for Elizabeth Mendenhall

And to the condominium

And to the zillions of pillows that became Zillow

And to the final episode of Bravo’s Million Dollar Listing

And to grinning at Andrew Flachner

And to the townhouse and the wading pool

And to the startup boosters Constance FreedmanBrendan WallaceAaron Block and Mark Birschbach

And to prophet Hank Miller, whose jeremiad against the industry put a fire under our readers

And to a 1000watt when you need it

And to bunkbeds

And to warrior priest Jay Thompson, the man with a strong heart despite sword blows to the chest

And to everyone named Victor & Sparkles

And to housing activists everywhere

And to the moment Mark McLaughlin put the Cobra GT500 into drive

And to the 4th and 5th Amendments to the U.S. Constitution

And to the inheritors Ben KinneyKymber Lovett-MenkitiSue AdlerThad WongEddie BerenbaumVanessa BergmarkShaun OsherChris LimMauricio UmanskyMark SpainMark ChoeyKendyl Young, Peter LorimerLaurie Weston Davis, Tiffany KjellanderPam LiebmanRaj Qsar, and Matt Beall

And to all of the disrupters, the new business models, the tinkerers and the entrepreneurs

And to the Pinecrest Diner, the Big Four, the Lambs Club, the French Roast, the KGB Bar, the Redwoods, the Box and the Beverly Hills Hotel

And to the reformers Team DivaRob HahnDebra TrappenTommy SowersSunny LakeBill WendellSara SutachanAnne JonesBrian CopelandMarguerite GiguereRyan BokrosCaroline Pinal and Carl Carter

And to Section 8 housing and the mortgage interest deduction

And to missing Peter Flint

And to tiny homes

And to the definition of loyalty Laura Monroe

And to notorious wing (wo)men Nyda Jones-Church (to Steve Games), Greg Schwartz (to Spencer Rascoff), Lisa Fettner (to Scott Olsen), Joan Dailey (to Avi Gupta) and Paul Boomsma (to Pam O’Connor)

And to those whose first name is enough — BillySethSamiVijaYaz, BlairErrol, Peter and Celeste

And to the turnaround crackerjack Amy Bohutinsky who should be running Uber

And to those who didn’t turn a big fortune into a small one Lennox ScottStephen BairdHoby Hanna and Obi Jacobi

And to the 1950s

And to the unsung: Stephanie AntonDeidre WoollardCary SylvesterMike RyanRyan GormanLeslie Appleton-YoungKatelyn CastellanoAmy GorceDiane RamirezSusan Yannaccone and Art Carter

And to housing the homeless

And to the everyday Realtor who saved lives in Harvey’s wake

And to Oakland, WEHO, Sausalito, UES, WPB, Palm Springs, 9th St., Carlinville and all of Illinois and most of Australia

And to Steve MurrayJeff LobbKen Jenny and a few other consultants

And to the garden apartment

And to Dottie and Dolly, if I have another daughter it will be a tough choice

And to the flacks we hate to hate Amanda WoolleyAudie Chamberlain, Kevin Hawkins and Sara Wiskerchen

And to Ryan O’Hara who keeps smiling through it all

And to Nest thermostats and Google Home

And to battle-scarred disruptor Joshua Hunt, who does not go down easily

And to your inner Ferry-self and to Tim & Julie’s clever rants

And to running water, light switches, warm floors and Mr. Coffee

And to Alex Lange for swimming with the salmon

And to the kidney-shaped swimming pool with a diving board

And to industry muckraker Greg Robertson

And to Joe SchuttNicole BeauchampSarita Lahoti Dua, Bob Watson, and Sean Carpenter for being everywhere for all of us

And to immigrants and their families

And to the software musketeers Jed CarlsonGrier AllenMorgan Carey and Matt Barba

And to the loud and the proud Leigh Brown

And to the steady hands Ron Peltier, Chris Heller, Joel Singer, Marilyn Wilson,David Charron, Suzanne Mueller, Rick Sharga, Billy Jack Carter, Charlie Young and John Aaroe

And to the Weber Grill and Bar Keepers Friend Cleanser & Polish

And to the thinkers Bill LublinJeff TurnerBernice RossLeslie Ebersole and J. Philip Faranda

And to sidewalks, bike lanes and street lights

And to trusting Lela Richardson and Joe Rand

And to missing Alex Perriello already

And to an industry that always puts up a good fight and feeds on community generosity when its neighbors are most in need

And to you Nate Ellis, who I know would approve

And to my last list…maybe.

 

Link to original article.

Real estate agents make movies to sell mansions as traditional home tours become obsolete

via Financial Express

In a world of extreme competition, traditional home tours are becoming obsolete. Real estate agents are now using movies to sell mansions.

Home-tour

It’s not easy to sell houses. In a  market spoilt for choice, selling mansions becomes even more tougher. So real estate agents are finding new ways to lure customers and one of them happens to be making movies to sell mansions. A woman in a red dress twirls with a mysterious man through light-filled hallways. There is light music that surges in a romantically-lit courtyard, which overlooks a twinkling city. A mischievous coda plays, and then the credits roll. You could mistake it for a scene from a romantic blockbuster. Not really, as this eight-minute mini movie is a real estate advertisement—uploaded on Vimeo—for an $8.5-million, 1.5-acre compound in Encino, Los Angeles. The days of good old brochures with high-resolution pictures are over. So is successfully marketing a mansion using shots from an iPhone or even expensive videos shot by drone. In the days of ever-evolving technology and infrastructure, real estate agents need to do a little more hard work to pitch the perfect sale bid.

So luxury listings are now experimenting with full-on property movies—films featuring actors, story arcs, scores and tinseltown-caliber cinematography. The money is spent on movies to be recovered through million-dollar sales. In another movie for a mansion, gorgeous women dressed in bikinis, sipping fine wine, are sitting by the poolside. The short movie made by realtors to sell a $32-million Hollywood Hills mansion cost its makers a whopping $40,000. Real estate agents Rayni Williams and Branden Williams were one of the first ones who came up with such an over-the-top marketing idea to sell a mansion in 2015.

The storyline of the movie pays attention to showcase all the finer details of the mansion. The man of the house is out of town and his wife texts her friends to come over and party. So the director of photography used five different cameras and three drones to capture the home’s splendour. The eight-bedroom estate boasts breathtaking views, a theatre and a gym. The husband and wife realtor team also made a $100,000-mini movie to sell a $70-million property the same year.

People are short of time and so the classic, old-school walking tour of the house is becoming more and more obsolete. So here come movies for a generation that is short on attention, but is addicted to smartphones. A movie makes people feel attached to a story, and they want to stick around and see what’s happening. Making a movie doesn’t come cheap though. Typically, the filmmaking cost is covered by either the listing agents, sellers or both. Movie-style real estate videos can cost anywhere from $5,000 to upwards of $30,000. Real estate agent Ben Bacal, an early innovator of high-gloss property films, worked with married clients Ori and Nafisa Ayonmike to craft a $20,000-film to market their home in Hollywood.

The Ayonmikes star in a fictional narrative that begins with Ori skulking through the sleek, contemporary rooms of his 5,500-square-foot, five-bedroom estate. In the next 11 minutes, Ori tells Nafisa that he wants a divorce. A passionate fight ensues, Ori gets kicked out and Nafisa chucks her massive diamond ring into the pool. Amid all the high drama, the camera-person captures the home’s 20-foot ceilings, high-tech security system, marble fireplaces and the tony Hollywood Hills neighbourhood.

The video of the property, listed at $3.65 million, has generated nearly 61,000 views since being posted on YouTube last year. As movies are doled out so are online video platforms, which have become a key component in property sales. Some 36% of home buyers used YouTube, Vimeo or another video-hosting website in their search last year, despite only 8% of real estate agents using films in their marketing strategies, as per the National Association of Realtors in the USA.

Bacal posted another movie trailer-listing video last year for a Bel-Air property, in which two children develop Ferris Bueller fevers and spend the day playing hooky. The pair splash in their infinity pool, shoot golf balls over the Los Angeles skyline from their lawn, try on outfits in their generous closets and have a puppy delivered by drone. The 14,230-square-foot spread sold in December for $39 million.

Not all of the properties are extravagant or overwrought. One narrative video, for a four-bedroom home in Brea that sold in October, focused on family. The movie trailer for the 3,008-square-foot property, posted on YouTube three months earlier by the Boutique Real Estate Group, features little girls at a sleepover, romping through various bedrooms and having a late-night living room dance party to Taylor Swift songs. Some properties take naturally to the camera.

Consider the 20,500-square-foot Opus spec estate in Beverly Hills. The $100-million listing—which includes seven bedrooms, 11 bathrooms, two swimming pools, art by Damien Hirst and Andy Warhol, and a champagne vault with 170 bottles of Cristal—was featured last spring in a video inspired by David Lynch and Eyes Wide Shut. Producer Alexander Ali of the Society Group worked with Hilton & Hyland selling agent Drew Fenton and developer Nile Niami—who co-produced Steven Seagal’s 1998 film The Patriot—on the Opus film. Opus has now received inquiries from China, Russia, Brazil and India.

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