As Restrictions Ease, the Market Shifts

May, 13, 2020

Our Real Estate Market Report for April 2020 is here! The real estate market in both Hawai`i and California continues to move forward during this uncertain time. As restrictions start to ease for both states, the market is beginning to shift and activity is starting to increase. This report shows important market data and trends for various cities during April 2020. Venture Sotheby’s International Realty is open for business and continues to utilize technology to operate at the highest levels. Links to the full reports are below.

Click Here for Full Hawaii Market Report

Click Here for Full California Market Report

Wherever Your Home May Be..

May, 7, 2020

During the past weeks, our homes have transformed into so much more.  For many, they have become their office, their children’s school, their gym, their favorite restaurant, and more.  Spending so much time in our homes has reminded us why home matters and what makes home such a special place.

01 A Place to Reflect

Home is a place where you feel most comfortable, which is why it feels so food to come home after time away. It’s a place where you can curl up with a good book and the place where your bed and pillow await after a long day. Now that many of us are spending more time in our homes than ever before, we may forget that special feeling of “coming home,” and how nice it is to walk through our own front door every day to a place of warmth and familiarity. Now is a perfect time to reflect on where you’ve been, where you are, and where you want to go in the future–and yes, that can include a travel bucket list.

O2 An Expression of Lifestyle

As many of us are spending time at home, we’ve been able to better evaluate the everyday functionality, layout, and aesthetic of our households. Our time at home right now affords us the opportunity to experiment with our space and whether it is truly working to best fit our needs. Consider reorganizing drawers, pantries, and closets as an easy weekend project. For something new, consider rearranging the layout of a room, ordering some new accessories or a new patio set, and if you have the time, trying a new paint color. Making small updates to your surroundings helps your home continue to be a place of comfort and inspiration.

o3 Memories and History

A favorite coffee mug from a special trip, a treasured family photo, memories of funny kitchen mishaps, and the first time you walked through the door and called this space home are all things to remember during a time like this–especially if you’re beginning to feel restless. Take a moment to look around your home and take stock of all it has provided over the years–let those memories bring a smile to your face. Remember, just because you’re home doesn’t mean you can’t make new memories; virtually visit a museum or take in a live performance to help pass the time.

04 A Home Means Hope

Having a place to call home sets you up for success and gives you hope for a better future. New Story, founded in San Francisco, has provided thousands of homes to families in need, and now, during this current health crisis, is helping families in the U.S. that are facing homelessness. learn more about New Story and how you can make a difference and see how they’ve partnered with Icon to revolutionize how they’re building homes on the Apple TV+ series, “Home”. You can also check into local organizations that help out your city’s homeless people, and families. 

https://newstorycharity.org/

Support Local, Eat Local

May, 1, 2020

One of the highlights of living in the Tri-Valley is the unique local businesses and restaurants.  While we always encourage people to shop and dine locally, it is especially important during these times.  We are deeply moved by the way our communities have already come together to support each other, first responders,  essential workers, and our local restaurants. We encourage you to keep supporting locally owned and operated businesses and what better way than with delicious food? Here are some of the great restaurants around the Tri-Valley you can enjoy today!

For a larger list of tri-valley restaurant information during the shelter in place, please visit: https://visittrivalley.com/2020/03/take-out-tri-valley/

Danville-

Sideboard Neighborhood Kitchen

This homey stop has fresh made-in-house espresso and pastries and has a full lunch/dinner menu of salads, sandwiches, and specials; all made with fresh ingredients. They are open Wednesday-Sunday 11a-7p for pick up or curbside ordering. They also have a current promotion going, if you purchase a $100 gift card, you will get $25 additional on them.

https://www.sideboard.co/

 

Dublin-

Inc 82

This is a neighborhood microbrewery, that serves up great food to compliments its drinks as well. With Dublin’s plentiful chain restaurant options, this is a great small business to support. They offer American fare, with by far one of the best Impossible Burgers in the area. They are open for take-out Tuesday-Sunday 3p-8p. They are also open for grocery staple orders as well, you can view their full list option online.

https://www.inc82.com/

 

Pleasanton-

Oasis Restaurant and Wine Lounge

Serving Mediterranean cuisine with a modern flair, this is a great place to order from to mix up your dinner night. Open from 4p-8:30p, you can order for take-out, or get delivery through DoorDash.

http://www.oasiswinelounge.com/

 

Livermore-

Strizzi’s

Locally owned Italian restaurant. They serve fresh fish dishes, pasta, burgers, and more. A recommendation would be to not pass up the over-roasted meatballs. They are currently open daily from 12p-8p for takeout and delivery.

http://www.strizzis.com/

 

San Ramon-

Clementine’s

This fun Family-owned restaurant serves Southern Louisiana cuisine in a New Orleans-inspired environment. Their crab cakes and shrimp Po’boy are a must-try. While you cannot enjoy their atmosphere at the moment, they are open for take-out and delivery from 9a-8p.

https://www.clementinesca.com/

Out with the Old, In with the Clean

April, 30, 2020

“There’s room in your life to do something right now,” said Fay Wolf, author of “New Order: A Decluttering Handbook for Creative Folks (and Everyone Else).” “Now that we are at home we are faced with our stuff. But we have an opportunity to take action and feel better.”With Wolf’s words in mind, here are some tips to start your spring cleaning while sheltering in place.

01 Categorize Belongings

By grouping your items into categories, this helps the ability to get rid of things. Make sure there is an order to your categories, stack books together, put decorations or electronics in bins, put bathroom items in waterproof bags, etc. Be sure to focus on belongings you actually use, along with items you have multiples of. 

02 Storage Bins & Containers

When items are in bags or cardboard boxes, it is difficult to keep track of what is in them. Meaning they can start to pile up and collect clutter. It is a good idea to keep things organized in clear bins and containers. Labeling these bins can help as well if you do not have clear bins handy.

03 Deep Cleaning Supplies

When starting your deep cleaning task, try putting together a cleaning caddy to have with you in every space. Microfiber cloths are a must-have, along with glass cleaner, a mildly abrasive cleaner, an all-purpose cleaner, and a pair of latex gloves are a good start to have in your cleaning caddy. Trust that when cleaning all over your space, you will not want to be running back to grab various cleaning products.

04 Garage and Storage Sheds

Garages and outdoor storage sheds are some of the most important places to clean. It is best to start your spring cleaning there. Categorize and organize the things in this space. It is a good time to ask yourself, “Do I use this?”, “Have I used this in the past year?”, “Does this have sentimental value?”. If the answers are no, then it is best to donate, sell, or throw away. These are two spaces where categorizing works best as well, think sections for seasonal decorations, cleaning supplies, outdoor equipment, etc.

05 Donate or Sell

If in usable condition, you could donate your items you are not needing anymore. During a Shelter In Place, many donation centers may be closed, however, many are still creating drop off points with no contact. You can also list things for free on Facebook Marketplace, the Nextdoor app or local online groups. And of course, you can always give away items to family and friends that you know would use or need them.

 

Remember, these are just basics to help get you started, do you have any helpful cleaning tips? Share below!

The Real Estate Market Continues Moving Forward

April, 29, 2020

Our Real Estate Market Report for March 2020 is here!  The real estate market in both Hawai`i and California continues to move forward during this uncertain time. This report shows important market data and trends for various cities during March 2020.  Venture Sotheby’s International Realty is open for business and continues to utilize technology to operate at the highest levels. Links to the full reports are below.

Hawaii full market report https://www.venturesir.com/eng/market-report/hawaii

California full market report https://www.venturesir.com/eng/market-report/california

 

From Golf to Football, Courtney Has Us Covered | Agent Spotlight

April, 28, 2020

We here at Venture Sotheby’s International Realty have exceptional agents, who excel in their real estate markets. Our company’s passion and diversity give us an opportunity to have agents from all backgrounds and walks of life on our team. Our agents are much more than real estate professionals, which is why we wanted to take the opportunity to highlight just what makes our agents so unique.

This spotlight, we are focusing on our California office agent, Courtney Johnson!

Courtney and her family.

Courtney joined our company this past January and has hit the ground running. Before joining Venture Sotheby’s International Realty, she was an Oklahoma native who moved to Arizona for college. She spent 15 years in the Phoenix area before finding her way to Pleasanton, CA in 2006. Over the years, she has mentioned she wore many hats; 8th-grade math teacher, cheer coach, leadership coach, wife, and mom of two sons. Some of her personal interests include watching college football; specifically, her Oklahoma State Cowboys. On her downtime, Courtney loves to golf, travel, attend family gatherings, and spend quality time with friends.

Courtney and the Castelettes from Castlewood Country Club donating $5,100 to Hope Hospice!

She is also the treasurer for her ladies’ golf group called the Castelettes from Castlewood Country Club. Besides having fun playing golf with amazing women- they give back to the community. They have donated to Hope Hospice and also volunteer at the Kids in Need tournaments.  She also helped with our Venture Sotheby’s International Realty GiveBack Homes initiative and participated on the building site for Habitat for Humanity. Another fun fact… She has a YouTube channel where she teaches women football!

Courtney and the Castelettes from Castlewood Country Club volunteering at the Kids in Need Tournaments!
Courtney helping at the Habitat for Humanity Build Site on our Venture Sotheby’s International Realty GiveBack Homes Day.

Shelter in Place Won’t Stop the Bay Area

April, 24, 2020

During this uncertain time, it can seem overwhelming, and at times tough to stay positive while sheltering in place. However, uncertainty does not stop the Bay Area.  There are many uplifting stories, from those on the front lines of COVID-19 to those bringing a little happiness to their local city. Here are a few of our favorite local heroes who continue to spread positivity throughout the Bay Area.

LIVERMORE — A Livermore restaurant is serving a side of kindness as it delivers free meals to local police, fire, and even healthcare workers.

Americano, located at 978 Murrieta Blvd., wanted to show its support for those on the front lines, and thank them for the support the restaurant received. So owner Vesna Kahriman first delivered food to Livermore Police several weeks ago. Then, she did it again for Livermore Fire Department and again, for health care workers at a local hospital last week. Read Vesna’s full story below!

Originally Published by Angela Ruggiero | Bay Area News Group https://www.mercurynews.com/2020/04/17/livermore-restaurant-gives-free-meals-to-first-responders-healthcare-workers/

 

Gina Woodward in costume dancing with her positive message (Michaela Hertle)

PLEASANTON — Spotted this pastel unicorn frolicking along the streets of Pleasanton? Gina Woodard, a massage therapist who’s lived in Pleasanton for 11 years and isn’t able to work, wanted to find a way to bring happiness to herself and her neighbors. To read the full story sure to give you a smile, follow the below link!

Originally Published by Courtney Teague | Pleasanton Patch https://patch.com/california/pleasanton/have-you-seen-unicorn-around-pleasanton

 

DANVILLE — Just over two weeks ago, a Tri-Valley volunteer began collaborating with a medical worker to design face masks for those on the front lines of the new coronavirus outbreak.

Since then, the volunteer group has quickly grown to 70 members, delivered thousands of items of personal protective equipment (PPE), and given itself a name: “Shield Our Heroes.” To read the full story and see how you can directly help this volunteer group, follow the link below.

Originally Published by Nick Garber | Danville Patch Staff  https://patch.com/california/danville/tri-valley-volunteers-make-ppe-coronavirus-responders

 

Local artist painting a San Francisco storefront (Melissa Pixcar)

SAN FRANCISCO— In all Bay Area cities, it is hard to miss the many closed up shops and restaurants. San Francisco Local artists decided to brighten this scene, they are bringing life and beauty to our streets and painting colorful and uplifting murals on some storefronts. To see these murals and get the full story, follow the below link.

Original Story by ABC 7 NEWS | https://www.msn.com/en-us/money/realestate/coronavirus-kindness-bay-area-artists-create-murals-on-boarded-storefronts-to-uplift-local-communities/ar-BB12Ofm8?ocid=a2hs

 

Birthday sign for Dottie (Adalia Loder)

PLEASANTON — Longtime Pleasanton resident Dorothy “Dottie” Boneza’s family wasn’t about to let her spend her 100th birthday alone in quarantine. They had planned a big birthday bash, mailed invitations and placed food orders, but had to cancel after Californians were instructed to stay at home. Instead, her family organized a birthday parade, with nearly 40 cars passing by giving birthday wishes. Click the link below for the full story.

Originally Published by Courtney Teague | Pleasanton Patch https://patch.com/california/pleasanton/pleasanton-woman-turns-100-surprised-drive-parade

 

Now more than ever, we are so grateful to our first responders and essential workers. It is great to see our community step up in supporting their efforts.

Do you know of any local heroes to highlight? Reply below to share!

Working From Home and Homeschooling-A Balancing Act

April, 22, 2020

Many of us are currently practicing social distancing and have found ourselves working from home, and that alone can come with its set of challenges. Children and teens have also found themselves at home with the task of keeping up with their schoolwork. This combination can prove to be challenging for any household; here are some helpful tips to keep things running smoothly.

01 Set a Schedule

Whether your child is in pre-school or high school, they’re no doubt accustomed to being on a schedule inside the walls of their school — and there are benefits from that. Write the day’s schedule in a highly visible and highly trafficked place or use devices powered by Alexa or Google to set reminders. Among other things, this sets clear expectations for what can be expected for the day.

02 Take Breaks

Every household will be different — just like every child. It’s important to tailor your schedule and workload to what works for your family. That being said, everyone needs breaks. Grab a snack, a cup of coffee, or a breath of fresh air with your child to break up your day; enjoy the quality time. Studies show that taking breaks helps our brains perform better.

03 Lean on Virtual Assistance

Managing screen time is a point of contention when it comes to the age of your child and how often they’re on their phone/tablet, but in these times it’s important to get help where you can. Let people like renowned children’s author and artist Mo Willems teach art class, let celebrities handle storytime, or call on Les Mills to proctor gym class. There are also a plethora of worksheets available from places like Lakeshore to keep the activities going while you get your work done.

04 Mix it Up

Schedules and a catalog of resources are great, but variety will keep your learners engaged and stave off the much-maligned sentiment of, “I’m bored.” Talk to your child and determine what’s working — and what’s not — before venturing out of comfort zones. Is your child an avid reader? Try Oxford owl to foster some alone-time with an age-tailored story. Looking for a more hands-on task? Make organizing socks, toys, pencils, or the pantry into a game.

05 Lower Expectations

At the end of the day, you have to do what’s best for your family and that means you can’t guarantee anything. Don’t live in a world of absolutes — if a schedule that has treated you well falls apart, don’t fret; staying flexible will keep both you and your children more content in the long run

Remember that we are all in this together; sharing what works for you on social media or through conversation may help others struggling to adjust. Your network of clients, colleagues, friends, and family may benefit from your success – and you from theirs.

2019 Achievement Awards

April, 17, 2020

The Path to Chairman’s Circle

This year marks the first annual Chairman’s Circle Achievement Awards for Venture Sotheby’s International Realty.  With four categories of award recognition, Venture Sotheby’s International Realty presented thirty-four agents with this prestigious recognition based on the agents’ total contributions in 2019.  The four levels of recognition are Gold, Platinum, President’s Circle, and Chairman’s Circle; Chairman’s Circle being the highest level of recognition.   A special congratulations to Kai Ioh, Susan Schall, Donna Garrison, Joseph Sabeh Jr., and Stephany Jenkins for achieving Chairman’s Circle for 2019.

Congratulations to all of our agents who, year after year, consistently achieve outstanding results and serve clients with dedication and excellence.

Chairman’s Circle Winners:

Hawaii-

Kai Ioh

California-

Susan Schall

Donna Garrison

Joseph Sabeh Jr.

Stephany Jenkins

 

President’s Circle Winners:

Hawaii-

Molly Harris

Gayle Ching

Cindy Griffey

California-

Melissa Pederson

 

Platinum Circle Winners:

Hawaii-

Emil Knysh

Doreen Trudeau

Kathy J. Christiansen

Kehau Stamm

California-

Judy Chen Pak

Kent Hu

Joyce Jones

Emily Barraclough

 

Gold Circle Winners:

Hawaii-

Whitney Harvey

Pat Collier

Rob Decker

Megan MacArthur

Alethea Lai

Guy Laguire

Michele Pa’ape

California-

Kevin & Bernie Wess

Sally Martin

Stacy Gilbert

Joan Sayko

George McKean

Brigitte Huntemann

Debby Johnson-Abarta

Margene Rivara

Ann Walker

Lisa Sterling-Sanchez

 

We are incredibly proud of their achievements and look forward to their continued success in 2020.

4 Virtual Travel Destinations

April, 16, 2020

Staying home and practicing social distancing doesn’t mean we have to miss out on breathtaking views and parks from around the world. Thanks to websites like Google Arts & Culture Project, you can visit National Parks & International Landmarks from the comfort of your own home.  Here are four travel destinations you can tour right now!

01 Yellowstone National Park, USA

Stretching over 3,500 sq. miles this wilderness recreation area is atop a volcanic hot spot. Yellowstone features dramatic canyons, alpine rivers, lush forests, hot springs and impressive geysers, including its most famous, Old Faithful. It’s also home to hundreds of animal species, including bears, wolves, bison, elk, and antelope. You can tour today using Google Arts & Culture.

Follow this link to tour now! https://artsandculture.google.com/story/yellowstone-national-park/MALStQ6JE5dHJQ

02 Hawaii Volcanoes National Park

Hawaii Volcanoes National Park is on Hawaii Island (the Big Island). At its heart are the Kīlauea and Mauna Loa active volcanoes. Large ferns mark the entrance to the Thurston Lava Tube (Nāhuku). The Chain of Craters Road weaves over lava. Trails crisscross the park. This can be viewed today using Google Arts & Culture.

Follow this link to tour now! https://artsandculture.google.com/story/hawaii-volcanoes-national-park/4wIiTBpojCwSLw

03 National Cherry Blossoms Festival, Washington D.C.

The blooming of the cherry trees around the Tidal Basin in Washington, D.C. is believed to symbolize the natural beauty of our nation’s capital city. The famous trees, originally a gift of Japan in 1912, signal Washington’s start to spring with an explosion of color and life that immerses the area in pale pink and white blossoms. The Festival had to be canceled for 2020, but directly on the festival’s website, you can have a virtual experience.

Follow this link! https://nationalcherryblossomfestival.org/

04 Great Wall of China

As China’s most famous attraction, the Great Wall of China is an essential stop. Commonly referred to as a wonder of the world, the Great Wall boasts a history of over 2,000 years and stretches more than 3,000 miles across several provinces of northern China, making it one of the most impressive ancient structures on the planet. This can be viewed from home now at The China Guide.

Follow this link! https://www.thechinaguide.com/destination/great-wall-of-china