Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Family Mudroom Designs

The family mudroom is, without question, one of the highest traffic areas in the home. It battles all sorts of external elements, from rain and snow to dirt and mud. It houses countless miscellaneous essentials, including shoes and boots, jackets, umbrellas, scarves and more. It is home to pet necessities and sporting equipment. It's where kids drop their backpacks and parents discard car keys or unload shopping bags.

For all these reasons, when planning the family mudroom design, it's important to select interior finishes wisely, maintaining organization while also personalizing the space for the entire family.

Select Smart Interior Finishes
Choose a satin or semi-gloss paint as opposed to a flat finish. These options make cleaning a much easier task. Also, if you've got pets and younger children in the home, consider selecting a darker wall color instead of a lighter one that will show even the slightest bit of dirt or discoloration.

Flooring will probably be the most critical decision you make regarding interior finishes for your family mudroom. Choose a weather-resistant surface that is also easy to maintain and keep clean. Ceramic tile, wood, or natural stone varieties such as slate make great durable options. Add an area rug at the entry for taking off soiled shoes and to help absorb moisture.
Organization Through Design
Individual lockers or cubbies for each family member are a great way to keep personal items separate and tidy. Large wall hooks are an inexpensive option for organizing jackets and handbags, and custom cabinetry or closets are fantastic if the budget permits.

A bench of some sort is a must for putting on shoes, and don't forget to utilize the space beneath for added storage. Wicker or cloth baskets come in a variety of sizes and colors and are a great way to keep scarves, hats or even pet toys organized in a stylish manner. 
Consider wire baskets or even galvanized tubs to capture a rustic, vintage look. Don't forget to use your vertical wall space for added shelving and additional orderly storage opportunities.

Key hooks ensure house keys and car keys are accounted for at all times and a central docking location is a great way to guarantee cell phones and tablets are charged up as family members rush out the door to begin their busy days.
Go Ahead, Personalize It
Organization doesn't have to be dull! Mudroom design for a family should take into account each family member and their individual needs and interests. If you decide to utilize personal cubbies or lockers, choose fun paint colors that complement each personality. Instead of labeling wicker or fabric baskets in a traditional manner, consider inserting photos of Dad, Sis or even Fido to define ownership in a fun way and further inspire tidiness.

When designing a mudroom for your family, remember to make wise decisions and remain organized. Be sure to have some fun in your selections as you create a personal yet functional space.

For more tips and tricks, and all things design, check out our Pinterest page

Monday, March 30, 2015

Townhome For Rent In El Cajon, CA!

807 S Mollison Avenue #15, El Cajon, CA 92020

3 Bed, 1.5 Bath, 1260 sf with 2 car garage!

FOR RENT! Great 2 story townhome for rent in El Cajon! Fully remodeled with granite countertops, stainless steel appliances, wood flooring, new carpet upstairs, and fresh paint throughout! Laundry closet inside unit. Private fenced patio.
$1725 per month with a min. 1 year lease. $1725 security deposit due at lease signing.

To schedule a time to view this property please contact Stephen Nissou!
DIRECT 619-250-4541
OFFICE 619-873-2772
EMAIL Stephen@StephenNissou.com

Home For Rent in El Cajon, CA!

1326 Clove, El Cajon, CA 92021

3 bed, 2 bath, 1624 sf

Great 3 bed, 2 bath, 1624 sf home for rent in El Cajon! $2,300 / month with a min. 1 year lease. Recently remodeled with new laminate wood flooring, tile floors, fresh paint throughout, new doors, and new shower in one bathroom. Open floor plan with new kitchen countertops and cabinets. Laundry Room with hook ups. Lots of storage provided in backyard and large yard with covered patio. Enjoy the landscaping and retreat area in your own backyard!

For more information and to schedule a private viewing please contact Stephen Nissou today! 
DIRECT 619-250-4541
OFFICE 619-873-2772
Email: Stephen@StephenNissou.com

To View this home on the MLS:

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

How To Be A Respectful Home Buyer

When a home is on the market, the seller's privacy goes out the window. It is almost guaranteed that some buyers will open drawers, peek inside cabinets and touch items that are obviously personal and not included in the sale.

Coming home from work to find that the impeccably-made bed you left in the morning is now covered in a ball of linens is obviously annoying. Constant requests to extend deadlines, lists of demands and nitpicking the condition of the home are not only time consuming and insulting, but they do nothing to endear the buyer to the seller.

These are just a few examples of homebuyers behaving badly. Depending on the market, however, buyers are not necessarily in the driver's seat. During periods of multiple offers and heavy investor involvement, it's important for buyers to be on their best behavior. So, dear homebuyer, read on to learn how to not turn off the seller of your potential dream home.
The Time Bandits
Savvy home sellers spend a great deal of time ensuring that the home is presentable during the marketing period. They clean, de-clutter, and then inconvenience themselves by skedaddling before any potential buyers show up. Buyers that cancel appointments at the last minute, or just don't bother to show up, are behaving quite badly.

Unless an emergency came up, and there was no time to call your agent or the seller, try to provide the seller with at least several hours' notice that you won't be arriving to tour the home. It's the polite thing to do, and it just might save the seller from needlessly preparing for your arrival.
"Time is of the essence" is a phrase that you'll see in most real estate purchase contracts. What it means is that all specified deadlines in the agreement are mandatory – well, sort of. Yes, you can request the extension of a date and it will most likely be granted, if the reason for the request is compelling enough.

Frivolous requests, however, or those made repeatedly, are big time wasters. Sellers are frequently on a tight schedule to get the transaction to the closing table. Just as you are excited to get into your new home, the seller has plans as well. Keeping contract deadline extension requests to a minimum is one way you can contribute to a smooth transaction.

Then there is the homebuyer that, once the ink dries on the contract, treats the home as if it's unoccupied and equipped with a revolving door. One week it's an interior decorator that needs access to take measurements, then, perhaps, the next week it will be the architect. Many buyers want to show family members their new home – before it is actually their new home.

The seller, in the meantime, is packing for the move, having repairs completed, accommodating the appraiser and inspectors – all while attempting to live a normal life. Additional home tours are more than an inconvenience, they are time stealers.

If you must gain access to the home, ask your agent to find out when the inspector or appraiser will be there and arrange to visit at the same time.
The Nitpickers
Nitpicking is neither a successful price-reduction nor negotiating strategy, as buyers who have tried it can likely attest. Bankrate.com's Dana Dratch calls these buyers "gladiator wannabes," who, after they've agreed to purchase a home, come in with a long list of things that are wrong with it, or a list of concessions.

The art of negotiating depends on give and take – not a barrage of one-sided demands. Let your real estate agent do the negotiating. If you truly feel that something that is wrong with the house commands a price reduction, your agent should be able to justify it with a list of comparables and reasons why the home doesn't stack up.
The Unprepared
There are several reasons why a real estate agent will suggest that a buyer get fully approved for a loan before submitting an offer. Buyers that don't take this important step will run the risk of derailing the entire transaction.

Even a pre-approval commitment from a lender isn't firm. Once the loan application is in the hands of the underwriter, anything can happen. Many times, a buyer will receive a letter from the bank – in the middle of a transaction – listing all the conditions that must be met before the loan is approved. Satisfying these conditions not only takes time, but, depending on the conditions, may result in a cancelled sale.

Take the time to work with your lender to ensure that you will get the loan before committing to purchase a home. Don't make any major purchases until the home closes escrow. Entering into the process knowing that you'll get the loan is not only a courtesy to the seller, but the peace of mind it will give you is priceless.

Both parties in a real estate transaction have schedules that need to be accommodated during the purchase process and, of course, sellers can behave badly as well. (We'll take a look at that in a future article). Respecting each other's needs helps make the transaction run smoother and more comfortably for all concerned.

For more tips about home buying, connect with me on Social Media!

Your Local San Diego Real Estate Expert,

Stephen Nissou
Nissou Realty Group   |   Keller Williams Realty
680 Fletcher Pkwy. El Cajon, CA 92020
Direct 619-250-4541  |   Office 619-873-2772
CalBRE # 01443193

Monday, March 23, 2015

Condo For Sale in Rancho San Diego!

12191 Cuyamaca College, #811
El Cajon, CA 92019

2 Bed, 2 Bath, 834 sf.
$229,000 - $239,000

Get a piece of Rancho San Diego before it's too late! Freshly painted downstairs 2 bedroom luxury condo in the heart of RSD! This is a great starter home, retirement home, or rental property. A highly desirable neighborhood with a beautiful open air feel, unline many other condo associations. Turn key ready - should I say more?  All appliances included, with central A/C, Granite and stainless steel appliances. 2 parking spaces!

Close to Edwards Cinema, Target, Sushi, Italian, Starbucks, Mexican restaurants, and much more! Close to freeways and schools. 

For more information, and to schedule a viewing, please contact Stephen Nissou!
Direct: 619-250-4541
Office: 619-873-2772
E-mail: Stephen@StephenNissou.com

Your Local San Diego Real Estate Expert,

Stephen Nissou
Nissou Realty Group   |   Keller Williams Realty
619-250-4541   |   619-873-2772


Friday, March 20, 2015

Meausuring the Value of a View

Suppose you own a castle on the flats and your brother owns one high atop a hill that features amazing, unobstructed views. Aside from location, the two castles are identical. Which one has the higher resale value?
If you guessed that it's the hilltop castle, you are correct. When valuing two similar pieces of property location is king and everything else is secondary.

While it's easy to say that the home with the view is "worth more" than the home without one, there are no rules on how much value the amenity adds.
Agents and Appraisers
Real estate professionals are at odds over this. Some claim that there is no premium for a view while others say that a view can add up to 15 percent to the value of the home over others lacking the amenity.

Researchers Mauricio Rodriguez and C.F. Sirmans reject the notion that a view has no impact on home value. Their study, published by Texas Christian University, shows that a view adds between 5 to 8 percent to the market value of a home.

Professional appraisers—those folks that tell your lender how much your home is worth—are given vague guidance by the Appraisal Institute that when valuing a property they must consider the view. What the institute doesn't tell them, however, is how to arrive at that value.

Then there is the fact that a view may be distasteful. An auto dismantler or a rundown apartment building out of the dining room window, for instance, will drag down the value of a property. Either way, views are challenging to measure, whether that view is good or bad.
View Orientation
Is what you're seeing out the window located close or far away? Patrick Brown and Beverly McCabe, in a report prepared for the American Appraisal Institute, claim that a close-up view is worth more than a faraway view. For instance, the Golden Gate Bridge right outside your window is worth more than if the bridge were located several miles away.

The pair also finds, though, "In some contradiction, a near view of a prized view object is preferred over a far view, while the ability to see a far distance is prized over a vista that is foreshortened."

Then there is the orientation of the view from within the home. A view from the back of a house influences the home's value more than a view from the front, according to the pair.

"What really counts is the (ground level) view from the back, because that's where people live," Ernest V. Siracusa, a Southern California real estate market analyst, tells MSN.com.

This is because almost no one spends much time in the front of a house; most of the "living" goes on at the rear. Siracusa claims that he would give a view from the front of the home "zero view premium."

The additional value is added if the view is from areas of the home that are used the most, such as the master bedroom, dining room and kitchen.
The Worth of a View
After spending years studying the subject of the value of a view in newly constructed homes, Siracusa has come up with a range to measure the value added for different types of views and view orientations. It runs from 1 percent to 2.5 percent for a home overlooking open space to 15 to 20 percent for a water view, as long as the view is unobstructed.

He goes on to point out that if that view is of the ocean, the home may command up to 30 percent more than similar homes without the view.

That's helpful information for builders who are attempting to put a price on new construction, but what about older, existing homes?

Earl Benson, Western Washington University marketing and finance professor, may have hit on the answer. He tells Marilyn Lewis of MSN Real Estate that his studies of Bellingham, Wash. assessor's records combined with his own calculations showed that a home in that area with a water view would sell for $117,600 more than a home that lacks that view.

Put that house on the shore of either the ocean or a lake, and it would command a whopping $253,280 more at close of escrow than if it were located somewhere less attractive.

While the value of a residential view fluctuates depending on orientation, the subject of the view, and the amount of obstruction, studies seem to show that the amenity does add to the resale value of a home.

If you're fortunate enough to live in a room with a view, ensure that your real estate agent factors it into the calculations she performs to determine market value.

Your Local San Diego Real Estate Expert,

Stephen Nissou
Nissou Realty Group   |   Keller Williams Realty - El Cajon
680 Fletcher Pkwy. El Cajon, CA 92019
619-250-4541 Direct   |   619-873-2772 Office
CalBRE # 01443193

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Creative Design Ideas For Themed Children's Bedrooms

There are many exciting ideas you can play around with when planning a themed design for your child's bedroom. When picking out décor and choosing a theme, be sure to have fun, be creative and, most importantly, let the child's individual personality and interests be your inspiration.

Be mindful of what is age-appropriate and also choose décor that your child won't outgrow quickly, or that could go out of style in a year's time. Rather than following fleeting trends, lean towards a design with an originality that matches your child. Boundless options exist and, with a bit of effort and imagination, can accommodate any style or budget.
DIY Decoration Ideas
One way to easily and affordably establish a theme for your kid's bedroom is by adding some statement wall art. Consider painting themed murals or utilizing stencils to paint your child's name, the alphabet or words of inspiration in oversized letters. Stencil and paint farm animal or jungle themes, floral or garden scenes, sports themes, underwater, or even outer space scenes.

Wall decals are another great option. Like stencils, an extensive variety of designs exists for you to choose from and they are easy to apply and remove, which makes updating décor to accommodate age or changing tastes a breeze.

Paint the walls in school colors or those of a favorite sports team for another inexpensive and easy theme. A few key pieces, such as team pennants, ball caps or jerseys are all it would take to finalize this simple theme.
Start Simply With Bedding
If you're looking to devise a more subtle theme in your child's bedroom than bold wall art provides, consider starting with the bedding, and then accenting the space with complimentary colors and simple décor.

You can purchase themed or patterned comforter sets that include everything from sheets and shams to bed skirts and accent pillows. This effortlessly establishes an overall design theme, and how far you decide to go with the rest of the room is entirely up to your personal preference. Adding complimentary or matching area rugs, window treatments and table lamps is a great way to subtly tie your style together and finalize the look.
Add Accent Pieces
Once you have established the overall theme and color scheme for your child's bedroom, let the fine tuning begin. Be mindful of adding age-appropriate furniture, either new or refurbished. Consider painting the pieces or including some stenciling to match your chosen theme. Add decorative drawer pulls to establish a unique, yet simpler, statement.

For the walls, add framed art to compliment the theme, or consider framing your child's own artwork in colored frames that match the room. Add crafty shelving to help maintain organization by storing books, toys and other miscellaneous child essentials. If you choose to add statement wall décor, such as decals or stencils, keep the remaining wall decoration to a minimum to avoid making the room look too busy or even cluttered.

Add a matching rug to compliment the theme, and also protect flooring. Remember to embrace your young child's imagination and creativity by establishing an area dedicated to play. Add theme-related tents or a small set of a complimentary table and chairs to promote play and assist in the child's social and emotional development.

The options are endless for inspiration! When settling on the theme for your child's bedroom, be imaginative, and of course, be sure to keep their interests in mind. Use creativity to guide you, and have fun as you craft this magical space for your very special little someone.

Your Local San Diego Real Estate Expert,

Stephen Nissou
Nissou Realty Group   |   Keller Williams Realty
Direct: 619-250-4541   |   Office: 619-873-2772
CalBRE # 01443193

Friday, March 13, 2015

What Will $450,000 Buy You In San Diego County?

Recently, the San Diego Union Tribune ran an article showing what the median home prices are in the county. Although you will and can buy in various parts of San Diego for around $450,000, you will also find lower and higher sale prices based on what areas you are looking for.

So, what will $450,000 buy you in San Diego county?

When you're ready to buy a home, please do not hesitate to contact me! Find out what homes are on sale NOW 

Your Local San Diego Real Estate Expert,

Stephen Nissou
Nissou Realty Group  |  Keller Williams Realty
Direct: 619-250-4541  |  Office: 619-873-2772
CalBRE# 01443193

Thursday, March 12, 2015

St. Patricks Day Calendar of Events in San Diego 2015

Are you looking for a fun event to celebrate St. Patrick's day? Here is your calendar of events for St. Patricks Day, 2015 in San Diego, California!

St. Patrick's Day at Hooley's Public House
March 13 - 17, 2015
Price: No Cover
Join us all weekend leading up to St. Patrick's Day for lots of live music, specials, and Hooley's shenanigans.

ShamROCK Gaslamp Block Party
March 14, 2015
Price: $35- $95
Venue: Gaslamp Quarter, Main entrance is at 5th Avenue and G Street
Celebrate St. Patrick's Day in the Gaslamp Quarter, as it magically transforms into the greenest party complete with go-go dancers and great live bands. 

St. Patrick's Day Parade & Festival
March 14th, 2015 - 9:00 am to 6:00 pm (Parade starts at 10:30am)
Price: FREE
5th & 6th Avenues, between Juniper and Upas, San Diego, CA 92101
Come celebrate Ireland with the annual St. Patrick's Day Parade and Festival. With more than 120 parade entries and thousands in attendance, this has become one of the largest single-day events in San Diego.
For more information, please visit www.sandiego.org.

St. Patrick's Day 10k RunMarch 14th, 2015
Price: $15 - $48
Venue - Mission Bay Park
Before you head out for pints of Guinness, take a short jaunt around Mission Bay Park at the St. Patrick's Day 10k Run and 2-4 mile Run/Walk.

St. Patrick's Day Club Crawl
March 14th, 2015
Price: $25
Venue: Analog Bar
Dress in green, rally up a group of friends and celebrate St. Patrick's Day weekend with club crawl.

St. Patrick's Day Half Marathon - 5k - Green Mile - Tribes & Clan Competition
March 15, 2015
Price: $25 - $89
Venue: Downtown El Cajon
Join in the fun at the St. Patrick's Day half marathon and 5k, the Green Mile for kids and adults with special needs in Downtown San Diego.

EC Craft Beer Invitational
March 15, 2015
Price: $10 - $55
Venue: Main Parking Lot - East County
Calling all Craft Beer enthusiasts! The EC Craft Beer invitational invites you to celebrate St. Patrick's weekend with delicious craft beer tasters.

St. Patrick's Day Bahia Belle Cruise
March 15, 2015
Price: Free when wearing green clothing
Come celebrate St. Patrick's Day aboard the Bahia Belle. The Bahia Belle bar will be serving Guinness and Jameson, plus drink specials to celebrate in proper Irish fashion.

Write Out Loud's Voices of Ireland
March 16, 2015
Price: $22 - $30
Venue: Coronado
Celebrate St. Patrick's Day with Irish tales, music, and dancing. Music by The Celtic Echoes. We will be joined by Ron Choularton and Cynthia Gerber. 

100 Celtic Harps in St. Patrick's Day ConcertMarch 17th, 2015
Price: $10 - $25
St. Patrick's Day bring the family! 100 Harp players from around the world perform all Celtic music for a splendid concert!

St. Patrick's Day Local Brews & Local Grooves
March 17, 2015
Price: No Cover
Venue: Downtown San Diego
Rock out in the Voodoo Room at a special St. Patrick's Day Local Brews Local Grooves

St. Patrick's Day at the Field
March 17, 2015
Price: No Cover
Join us at The Field in our turn of the century Irish pub, shipped piece by piece from Ireland and relocated in the heart of San Diego's Historic Gaslamp Quarter. 

For more information, and to find other St. Patrick's Day events in San Diego County, please visit www.SanDiego.org!

Your Local Real Estate Expert,

Stephen Nissou
Nissou Realty Group  |  Keller Williams Realty
680 Fletcher Pkwy. El Cajon, CA 92020
Direct 619-250-4541 | Office 619-873-2772