Real Estate

Sonoma Vineyard Estate

We could not be more excited to help sell what is nothing short of an enchanting 6+ acre vineyard estate at 5250 & 5310 Gravenstein Highway North, Sebastopol, CA 95472.  

The estate is an immediate neighbor to some of the world’s most celebrated and iconic wineries ... Kistler, Merry Edwards, Dutton-Goldfield, Paul Hobbs, Emeritus Vineyards, Dehlinger and Iron Horse. The property has achieved a recent top rated Robert Parker wine rating through its vineyard designated grapes.

Classic Estate Vineyard And Farm

You enter this breathtaking property through a private gate that opens onto a majestic 2-acre biodynamic vineyard with a big red barn and palm trees in the distance.

At the bottom of the private drive, is a recently renovated and romantically designed main residence that blends stylish spaces for entertaining and living with modern amenities.

In the back is a small pool house, a Jacuzzi and a 60-foot solar heated lap pool with sweeping westward facing views of vineyards.

Just a quick stroll past the pool is a large organic vegetable garden that yields a variety of bountiful crops that supply nearby upscale Italian restaurants.

The main garden includes flowers and dozens of plants, including at risk medicinal herbs. In 2015 this part of the garden was designated a North American botanical sanctuary by United Plant Savers (www.unitedplantsavers.org).

To the right of the main house is a charming 1910s guest house perfect for hosting family and friends or for generating revenue from its 8-year perfect five-star Airbnb and VRBO profiles.

Rounding out the buildings is a classic red barn, along with a roadside berm planted with flowering shrubs and decorative flowers indigenous to Northern California wine country, and is a well-known iconic landmark.

Main Residence

The first floor of the main residence includes:

* a beautiful dining room, a living room, salon, office, a mudroom with a contemporary custom stone sink and countertop and a guest bedroom;

* A bathroom with an elegant chandelier, a mirror paneled wall and a stunning free-standing tub;

* a dining room that naturally extends to the outdoor patio overlooking the pool and gardens through floor-to-ceiling folding Nano doors and

* a professional grade chef’s kitchen that is perfect for preparing a true farm to table gourmet meal from the vegetables and fruits from the property’s lush gardens and orchard.

Beautiful hardwood floors with ambient flooring flow to the upstairs where there are two bedrooms and a bathroom with a glass enclosed rain shower, floor-to-ceiling tile and a marble counter.

The master bedroom has a high-peaked ceiling with a skylight and large windows overlooking the manicured grounds below. 

Not a single detail has been overlooked as one-of-a-kind accents and contemporary lighting fixtures create modern elegance in this classic country residence.

Pool House 

The pool house has a guest suite and a ½ bath for overnight guests and an outdoor shower to rinse off before jumping into the pool. 

Guest House

Recently remodeled, the 1910s farm house is a throwback to another time, but with the modern conveniences. As you enter, you are greeted by a gas fireplace and cozy, sunny rooms with sky lights.

Gorgeous views of the gardens and vineyards amaze from every window while the arched entry ways from room to room add to the country feel of this warm cottage.

The home has two bedrooms, a full bath and a wrap-around porch overlooking the property’s extraordinary scenery. The charming kitchen overlooks a vineyard with a napping loggia in the garden that is perfect for afternoon siestas, massages and entertaining.

Vineyard

Surrounded by world class vineyards, the farm’s 2-acre biodynamic vineyard generates not only a fabulous view but also revenue from the seasonal selling of its grapes to VML winery.

Recently the farm’s Russian River Chardonnay was rated 94 points by Robert Parker and described by VML as “nothing less than transcendental.”

Barn

The big red barn is not only scenic but also functional as it includes an elevator and an in-law unit with a bathroom and kitchen.  It also includes a temperature controlled 1,500 bottle wine cellar. What better place to store the award-winning wine grown on the property?

Imagine a day spent soaking in the sunshine by the pool while sipping the amazing Chardonnay grown in the vineyard and preparing a meal in your chef’s kitchen from the fruits and vegetables from the organic gardens.

The vineyard estate truly is a place to reconnect with the earth while embracing the solitude that comes from owning such a unique wine country vineyard.

If you’d like to learn more about this remarkable one-of-a kind property, please contact Doug Bend at Doug@BLGProperties.com.

The Top 4 Questions To Find Your Ideal Home

Looking for a great home? Here are four questions to ask to help you separate the wheat from the chaff.

  1. What Is Your Targeted Purchase Price?

A great starting point is to get pre-approved for a mortgage so you know the home you can truly afford.

You may want a ten story mansion with a  pool and a basketball court, but can you realistically afford it? Even if you can afford the mortgage payments, would you be "home broke." That is, would you have anything left over after paying for your home mortgage for travel, eating out and other things you enjoy in life?

      2.  Location, Location, location!

Do you want to live in the city? A suburb? The countryside?

Particularly if you will be moving from one area to a new type of location you should consider moving to the new location for one to three months to give it a living test drive.

You may like the idea of living in the countryside and having your own garden but what would be your commute to work? How far is the closest grocery store? What will you do for entertainment?

It is better to experience the pros and cons of a new environment on a trial run than after you have made a large financial and life commitment to make the shift.

     3.  What Type Of Home Do You Want To Live In?

Do you want to live in a historic home? A condo? A home with a beautiful, big yard?

Do some research to make sure you know of the time and financial commitments of the type of home you want to live in.

A historic home might seem nice on paper, but what are the restraints on renovations? What are the energy bills like?

The pool at the condo might seem inviting, but what are the HOA fees? Are you game for dealing with all of the HOA rules?

You might envision yourself sitting on your deck overlooking your big, beautiful yard, but are you will to commit several hours a week to taking care of the yard or to spending money on a gardener?

Be sure to give some serious thought not only about the upsides of a potential home purchase, but also the time and financial commitments to maintaining the home.

4. What Are Your Particular Needs?

Before buying a home, give serious consideration as to what you want your day to day life to be.

For example, do you have children? Then you should pay more attention to the schools in the neighborhood than if you are 55 and are planning to retire.

Do you have a car? If so, is there suitable street parking or should a garage be a must have?  

Every home buyer is different and so each one will have a different home that would be ideal for their dream lifestyle.

Finding your ideal home takes time and thoughtful consideration. Do you need a fantastic real estate agent to help you find your ideal home? If so, give us a call at (415) 297-6370.

What Is The Difference Between A Real Estate Agent, A Real Estate Broker And A Realtor?

When trying to determine which real estate agent to work with, the various titles real estate agents use can be very confusing. Here is a breakdown of the key distinctions between a real estate agent, a real estate broker and a Realtor®.

What Is A Real Estate Agent?

A real estate agent is anyone who has a real estate license. A real estate agent could have two days of experience or twenty years of experience. A real estate agent, therefore, is a very generic description for anyone who has a real estate license, regardless of the amount of real estate experience or the level of licensing.

What Is A Real Estate Broker?

Most states have a preliminary associate level of real estate license before someone is a full real estate broker. Associate brokers are required to work under a fully licensed real estate broker.

For example, in California you are required to be an associate broker for at least two years before you can sit for the test to become a real estate broker unless you submit an application to have the two year associate broker requirement waived for equivalent experience.

Doug Bend with BLG Properties is not only an associate broker, but a full real estate broker.

What is a Realtor®?

A Realtor® is a real estate agent who is a member of the National Association of Realtors®.

If a real estate agent wants to call themselves a Realtor®, they are required to pay the National Association of Realtors® dues and to follow its code of ethics.

Like a real real estate agent, a Realtor® could have two days or twenty years of experience.

Don't be confused by the various titles of real estate agents. Instead, focus on finding the real estate broker whom you feel most comfortable working with and who has the best experience to help you and your family find an amazing home.

Trying to find the best real estate agent to help you buy or sell your home in the Bay Area? E-mail us at Doug@BLGProperties.com.

6 Ways Owning A Home Saves You Money On Taxes

Thinking of buying a home to save some money on taxes? Here are a few reasons why buying your dream home might help you pay less to Uncle Sam.

1. Mortgage Interest Deduction.

Each year you can deduct from your taxable income the amount of money you paid in interest on up to $1 million in mortgage debt. 

In particular, a huge portion of your mortgage payments in the first few years of owning your home will mostly go to interest and only a small portion will go to the principal of the loan.  This deduction alone can add up to thousands of dollars. Your lender should send you IRS Form 1098 which will show how much  interest you paid on your home mortgage in the prior year.

2. Home IMprovements.

In addition to mortgage interest, you may be able to also deduct the interest on a home equity loan or line of credit for improvements to your home.

There are limits on the amount you can deduct if the home equity loan or line of credit is more than $50,000 if you are filing single or $100,000 if you are filing married or jointly. In addition, the amount you can deduct also has a limit if your mortgage is more than the fair market value of your home.

3. Expenses When You Move.

You might be able to write off the expenses you incur moving to your new home if you purchase a house that is at least fifty miles closer to where you work.

4. Taxes On The Appreciation Of Your Home Value.

For most assets, you have to pay capital gains tax if you sell the asset for more than what you paid for it.

For example, if you buy Apple stock and the stock increases in value before you sell it, you might have to pay capital gains tax on those gains.

In contrast, if you buy a home that is your "primary residence" for at least two of the past five years and it increases in value, you might not have to pay capital gains tax on the first $500,000 in gains if you file jointly or $250,000 if you are single. 

5. Mortgage Insurance Premium.

You are likely paying a mortgage insurance premium if you paid less than a 20% down payment on your home. You may be able to deduct this mortgage insurance premium as mortgage interest on Schedule A of your Form 1040 if you and your spouse earn less than $109,00 each year.

6. Property Taxes.

Finally, you may be able to claim an income tax deduction for the property taxes you pay on the assessed value of your home.

As an added bonus, unlike the $1 million limit on the home mortgage interest tax deduction, there is no dollar limit on the amount of real estate taxes that can be deducted.

 

Your county's acssessor's office should send you a statement showing the amount of property taxes you paid.

Propety taxes taxes can be written off in the year they are paid, not the year they are due. 

What can't you deduct?

Unfortunately, you cannot deduct:

(i) Utilities, such as electricity or water;

(ii) Home and title insurance;

(iii) Homeowner association fees or

(iv) Transfer taxes in a personal home sale.

This article provides some of the most common tax savings for home owners. That being said, because each person's tax scenario is unique you should definitely consult with your CPA to see if these potential tax breaks might benefit you.

Are you looking for a rockstar real estate agent to help you purchase a home? If so, give us a call at (415) 295-6370.

Disclaimer: This article discusses general tax issues, but it does not constitute tax advice.  No reader should act or refrain from acting on the basis of any information presented herein without seeking the advice of tax counsel.  BLG Properties expressly disclaims all liability in respect of any actions taken or not taken based on any contents of this article.