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LA Digs - Northeast LA Real Estate Blog

Welcome to LA Digs, the real estate and Northeast Los Angeles community blog written by Realtors Tracy King and Keely Myres.

Here, we share tips, market updates, and local news bits to keep you informed on what's happening in Northeast Los Angeles and the surrounding neighborhoods. Read on to learn about the latest in your neighborhood!

Home Upsizing, Downsizing Or "Rightsizing"? That Is the Question

Home Upsizing, Downsizing Or "Rightsizing"? That Is the Question

When we consider the important elements of our lives - like buying and selling our homes - the words we use and how we think about it matters.

Helping homebuyers and home sellers buy and sell real estate in NELA for as long as I have, I’ve seen it all. Homes for sale in Mt. Washington, for instance, offer large modern homes as well as tiny bungalows. Homes for sale in Pasadena offer ginormous California Craftsman homes as well as very small ones. Many are buying and selling homes to upsize. They need more space. But we also see many trying to downsize. They require less space.

Rather than thinking “upsize” or “downsize”, for many good reasons, we might ought to consider the modern term “rightsizing”.


Right-sizing is often about our quality of life. Often a much larger home requires a lot more work and effort to maintain. That time could be better used for other endeavors. Time is the last luxury. We are ALL running out of it.

This is one of the 6 points that Leonard Steinberg, Compass' President, itemized in his daily email regarding downsizing, or  rightsizing as he calls it. I'm dealing with a couple of downsizing/rightsizing projects myself, and I know how stressful it can be. My husband and I often ask each other--how did we end up with so much stuff? Then there's my mother, who is 91 and facing the same issue with only my sister and me to help. And I'm 300 miles away! 

But enough about me. I loved Leonard's conclusion:

Scaling down your home often feels like a regressive, negative moment in life, but I see it as the exact opposite. I have bumped into clients months after they made this stressful shift only to find them happier, less stressed and with a new sense of freedom. Remove ego from homeownership and the decisions made are often much wiser.

The wisdom of removing ego from homeownership, and from all kinds of real estate transactions, is so true in so many ways. For instance, your house will not sell for more than a flipped completely done house that's bigger no matter what you think of their taste. It's not about you and how cool you think your house is. It's about buyers and what they think. And they speak with their feet these days.

"Why don't they make an offer?" Sellers ask this all the time. It's because they don't want to offend you, or they don't want to bother, or they've been trained to believe that you really mean your price.

Here's another example: real estate agents who try to dominate a transaction, like "I would never let my buyer get less than half the credit I told him to expect from the seller." What? This agent thought she had some eerie power over the seller and the buyer in this escrow. My seller said "Let's kick this buyer to the curb and go to the next one." We had a great backup buyer and we did exactly that.

We all have some interest in real estate. After all, we all live somewhere, even if it's under a bridge or on our buddy's couch. Let's figure out what we need and let go of at least some of what we want and maybe we will all be a little more content with our lives.

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Pasadena Wine Festival and the Los Angeles County Arboretum

The Pasadena Wine Festival was an interesting event. They advertised 125 wines, food trucks, and music, and they delivered on all three. But the real attraction was the Los Angeles County Arboretum, which was in fine form. The day was stunning--hot, sunny, clear, then cooler and the sweet and herbal scents from the gardens mixed with the garlic fries, the sausages and the cheeses was heady and completely enticing.

Octgober 2010 009

It was a large crowd, the lines were present from about 3 o'clock on, expanding to just a bit too long about 6 pm. But we explored the Arboretum and found the lagoon where the Tarzan films were made, the Queen Anne Cottage that the builder of the Santa Anita Racetrack built, and thoroughly enjoyed the balmy, perfect evening. And we stumbled upon the hot air balloon for an added dramatic touch. How totally lovely an afternoon.

Tarzan's lagoon

Tarzan's lagoon

Hot Air Ballon at the Arboretum

Hot Air Ballon at the Arboretum

How perfect this day was: this is the view from the herb garden to Mt. Wilson.

Herb garden to Mt. Wilson

Herb garden to Mt. Wilson

I love LA!

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1370 Hits

Pierre Koenig Architectural

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A named architectural for under $2 million? Built in 1966, this 2700 square foot home is tucked into a 12,000 square foot lot with peekaboo views of the ocean in the luxurious community of Rancho Palos Verdes. Pierre Koenig designed this for the Henbest family and the current owner bought it from the family trust in 2002.

In almost entirely original condition, the details of the space and the materials are as fresh and exciting as the day the certificate of occupancy was issued. Radiant floor heat works beautifully. With a peek-a-boo view of the ocean, air conditioning isn't necessary. The terrazzo tile floors in the kitchen and baths are exquisite.  The space is open, with floor to ceiling windows throughout, and sliding glass doors to the Zen garden and the other outdoor spaces around the house.

This is a pristine mid-century perfect for the true mid-century buff. There are 3 bedrooms, an office that could be a 4th bedroom, plus a spacious entry, a powder room with the original Asian inspired wallpaper, a living room large enough for a grand piano at one end, a formal dining room with a passthrough to the kitchen which is open to the family room that extends the depth of the house. There are two bedrooms at one end of the house with a bath between and the master with its own bath at the other side of the house with the office/guest room.

The garage is large enough for two cars plus storage. The yard is very private, located mostly in the front behind the privacy fence. The teahouse and koi pond are original and there is an outdoor dining area that has views of the garden.

Open for viewing Saturday, May 16, 3 to 7:30 pm.

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1631 Hits