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Abode: Oakland Under Construction!





Can These Cranes Pull Up Oakland’s Housing Shortage?

You see them everywhere — from nearby Bart stations to the Brooklyn Basin development — cranes lifting glass and steel, floor by floor, building thousands of new housing units in Oakland. 7,035 units to be exact, with another 8,367 units already approved for construction.  Add another 3,044 under proposal and Oakland has plans to build a total of 18,446 housing units! Whew!

For those of us maneuvering between crowded lanes, sitting in traffic and circling the block looking for parking, it already feels overcrowded in a city that Gertrude Stein once declared “there is no there there!”

Well, Oakland is now “there,” with a growing population of 429,000. And yet, with all the cranes hovering overhead, they will only increase housing by 10%


Do You Think Your Home is Worth That Much?

Recent years have really pumped up our home values. So now, at the top of 2020, how much is your home worth? Well, it depends on where you live, and the size of your home. So says our “stat” guy, Patrick Carlisle at Compass. He cranked out the median sales prices for January 2020 and below, provided a snapshot of home values in your neighborhood. Are you surprised at your home’s worth?



Trending: Wallpaper Can Add Glamour to Your Home’s Entrance

If you’re looking to add glamour to your foyer, a gorgeous wallpaper is a great way to go. From florals to geometrics, textured prints and more, wallpaper provides a big, artistic impact, especially in a small space.

Today’s wallpapers are fresh and easy to install. This is not your Grandmother’s wallpaper that was plastered in every room of the house.

Consider using it to accent a small space, add texture to a bland room, or make a bold statement that paint simply can’t do. One of my clients wallpapered an animal theme for their baby’s nursery that made the room simply adorable. There are many on-line companies that you can thumb through, like West Elm, to get ideas.




Why Sidewalks Are Better Than Instagram

I live in a neighborhood that has sidewalks. I never thought about them when we bought our house some 20 years ago. But now, they are the venue that connects our community. Everyday we take our dog, Penny, for her walk and the sidewalks are the map that we follow. Along the way I get to gaze at the beautiful homes that line our streets, then stop and greet all the other dogs, and chat with neighbors who are known only by their first names, like Mary.

Mary lives just down the street from me, and at 91 years old, she is a constant figure to neighbors. Short of rain, she can be found outside every day, raking up the leaves that fall onto the sidewalk from her Sycamore tree. She is always laughing and ready to share a good story, and curse those leaves!

“Darn those leaves,” she would cry. But we all know that the leaves which line the sidewalks are her means of staying connected. From young mothers with strollers to women out power walking, Mary chats with everyone.

Neighbors taking the time to stop and talk, wave from across the street or just give a smile are powerful ways we stay connected, especially in this sterile age of Instagram and Facebook. It’s this connection that makes a house a home, and home part of a community.

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