Luxury Second Homes


“I am a private investor living in London. My wife and I were planning to spend the Thanksgiving holidays with my sister in Sonoma County, a former For Buyers Only Realty client. Just a few days before my visit, I shared with my sister my thoughts about buying a second home in Northern California. She strongly urged me to speak with the FBOR broker, Gene Berman. I did. The day before we left London, Gene e-mailed us several listings based on his understanding of our interests. One that we found particularly interesting had recently been withdrawn from the market. Gene arranged a targeted tour of about eight properties that were spot-on with our criteria (including the one no longer on the market that interested us most) and, believe it or not, gave up has day-after-Thanksgiving holiday to lead that tour. We traveled in a caravan of three vehicles so the entire family could see the properties we were touring — the weather was horrible; the rain was often coming down sideways. By day’s end, we decided we wanted to purchase the withdrawn property. Gene contacted the former listing broker to arrange for the seller to receive our offer. Then, he devised a pricing strategy that would net the cost of this house well below what we thought we’d have to pay to get it into contract. In just one day, Gene had all the offer documents prepared and personally delivered them to our hotel in San Francisco ahead of our departure. We were able to fax them back to him from the airport lounge before getting onto the plane home. Next thing we knew, we were in contract. While we were back in London, Gene arranged and attended all the inspections. The inspectors’ reports were the most thorough I’ve seen. He skillfully managed the negotiations to deal with the inspection deficiencies. He provided referrals to excellent contractors and engineers to do the necessary remedial work after we closed escrow. When the neighboring property came on the market, there was no question as to who would represent us in that purchase, especially since it would have to be conducted entirely while we were overseas. It was handled just as flawlessly as in the first transaction. Our Glen Ellen retreat is now not only a prized historical site – it is more importantly, a place we truly love calling our California home. “

A. & A. F., Glen Ellen, CA