We’re thrilled to announce we’ve ranked No. 13 in the 2015 REAL Trends 500, bumping us five places from the No. 18 slot last year. The report, based on dollar volume of sales, ranks the country’s largest and most successful residential real estate firms and is the most trusted standard of performance measuring these leading brokerages.
Thanks to our hardworking and immensely talented agents, we saw double-digit growth, outpacing other top grossing companies with lower year-over-year gains: our company‐wide sales volume of $5.3 billion in 2014 represented a 14% jump from 4.7 billion in 2013. Our Connecticut expansion, which began with the opening of our Greenwich office, brought an additional $500 million in sales alone in 2014. That office is currently ranked No. 1 in Greenwich based on total dollar volume.
Additionally, Houlihan Lawrence agents were responsible for one out of every three homes sold in Westchester County in 2014 and one out of every four homes sold in Putnam County.
“We are extremely proud of the collective achievements of the over 1,200 agents in the Houlihan Lawrence family,” said Stephen Meyers, President and CEO of Houlihan Lawrence. “The firm’s 125 year heritage of success is grounded on providing superior client service with experienced analysis, local knowledge and continued innovation. Our hardworking and immensely talented agents have placed Houlihan Lawrence as a nationally ranked top tier brokerage.”
Most of us get a little crazed around the holidays. We tend to loose sight of the fact that its time for family and friends to be together and enjoy each other….easier said than done.
Don’t be afraid to cheat a little. I think that using paper products (sparingly) is totally ok. Maybe for dessert, or the kids table, or just napkins. Caspari makes beautiful ones that can incorporate so nicely into your tablescape. It will free up time in the kitchen or at the ironing board. June & Ho, Decoration Day, and Home Goods (limited edition) all have them.
Last year around this time my neighbor and I decided to have a Tag Sale. After trying unsuccessfully to hire a company to help us we decided to go at it alone. We spent some time hitting other tag sales to see what was being sold and to check out pricing strategies. The research was actually fun! It’s a great way to clear out your clutter and make a few bucks.
Here is what you do:
1.Go through your house top to bottom and take EVERYTHING OUT … people actually buy it all!!
2. Get supplies – sticker labels, cash box, signs, change, rent a few tables
3. Price your items….half of original value to start…as the day goes on slash prices
4 ADVERTISE – local paper, Craig’s List, and GS Air or other another APP
Here are a few tips I wish we had:
1. Big furniture dd not sell very well
2. Be tough…some of these people are pros…the early birds are all in this for a living
4. Dont be afraid to break up a set…we found this out the hard way.
5. Have one tough negotiator…my partner was ….she was really tough, and it paid off.
6. Line up a service or friend to come at the end of the day and take all that is left. We both told our friends, gardeners, babysitters, to come at 5 and everything was free…the place cleared out in 30 min! No clean up!!
Have fun….we did…we still have great stories about all the characters that showed up, and to boot we made a bunch of money. I also have another career lined up if need be.
So everytime a client comes to us from outside of town they want to pick our brains …find out where to do everything from exercise to a birthday dinner , so we thought we should get our favorites out there.
Some of my favorites: (in no order)
Restaurant – Tough, really tough to pick one, but Aurorain Rye covers all bases for me. Make sure you hit the Tuesday night 50% off bottles of wine.
Aurora – Great spot – try it on Tuesdays 50% off wine!
Place to go with my kids – Manor Park in Larchmont. This is an easy one…its outdoors, nothing commercial about it and definitly one of the prettiest places in the county (in my opinion the world). My kids spend HOURS climbing the rocks, I get lost in the view. it’s a win-win!
Clothing Store – Intermix on Greenwich Avenue, I always find something
Gift Shop (for me or a friend) – Clutch in Larchmont
I always leave with a full bag!
Soon to be some of my favorite things….
Secret Stash opening within SKIN NY on Purchase street in Rye, it’s going to be a collection of unique items of the “where did you get that” variety. Small inventory will keep us checking back all the time.
Also hearing we are getting a BRICK GYMin the area…not 100% sure where but I would love to try it out.
Like many homeowners I noticed recently that my taxes were creeping up and I was certain my house was not at the value it once was. Kind of an annoying pill to swallow!
Not a sure thing but worth a shot!
So I enlisted the help of Jim Simmons of GMS Associates…boy am I glad I did. We were able to get our taxes grieved by about %13 …not bad right? Now you can only do this at certain points in the year. Usually in June. Get on it now or at least soon, maybe you can save some on taxes and make your house more appealing to a buyer.
Work with a professional and follow their lead, you will need an appraisal (they will give you a referral) and go from there…good luck.
“I will share an example of how frustrating it is:
There’s a house in Port Chester, 2400 SqFt, 4 bedrooms, 2.5 baths, built in 1995 asking $480,000. Great condition, great space, great price. On a price per square feet basis, best value in town. The home has been listed with 4 different agents and has not sold. The issue? Taxes are $15,000. The town has the house assessed at $689,000. If the house can’t sell at $480,000, then logic says that the fair market value of the home is less than that, right? So where did the town come up with $689,000 and why don’t they lower automatically the same way they raised it automatically?”