Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Irvine Housing Blog

Irvine Housing Blog

Link to Irvine Housing Blog

Irvine—An Arbor Day Tree USA City

Posted: 30 Oct 2013 05:00 AM PDT

Trees help define the beauty and master-planning of our City….We love our trees.”—Irvine Mayor Steven Choi

“Trees are vital to the public infrastructure of cities and towns throughout the country, providing numerous environmental, social and economic benefits.”—Arbor Day Foundation

Did you know that Irvine is one of Arbor Day’s Tree Cities USA? With 23 years on the Tree City USA list, Irvine has been a Tree City USA for quite a few years.

So why should we care? Trees provide aesthetic value that adds to the enjoyment of a home or neighborhood and increase property values. In addition, they are the “lungs of the earth.” They take in carbon dioxide, which reduces pollution, and then give back oxygen, which, of course, we need to breathe. They also control dust and provide shade. 

Irvine’s Official City Tree, the Camphor Tree, courtesy Wikipedia

“When a community becomes a Tree City USA, it means more than being able to display a road sign or fly the flag. Tree City USA is the basis for effective, well-organized tree care programs. Along with community pride are practical benefits such as helping to gain financial support for tree projects, contributing to safer and healthier urban forests and allowing municipal officials to deliver better service to the voting public.” –Tree City USA

The Arbor Day Foundation and the National Association of State Foresters have established four criteria for obtaining Tree City USA status. These four criteria require that cities or towns establish the following: Tree Board or Department, Tree Care Ordinance, Community Forestry Program With an Annual Budget of at Least $2 Per Capita, and an Arbor Day Observance and Proclamation.

Tip: Improper pruning can result in stress on trees that can lead to unhealthy and hazardous trees. To help in maintaining the value and safety of a home, click on the free link that the Arbor Day Association provides for proper pruning tips.

Note: To maintain the health, safety, and value of the trees owned by the City of Irvine, Irvine follows the International Society of Arboriculture (ISA) pruning standards, and the pruning is performed under the direct supervision of an ISA Certified Arborist. Some of the most popular City of Irvine trees are pines, sycamore, sweetgum, Crape Myrtle, and ficus.     

Note: Orange County cities that have been on the list even longer than Irvine are Fullerton (32 years), Anaheim (29 years), Orange (24 years), and Cypress (24 years). Newport Beach ties with 23 years. Other Orange County cities on the Tree City USA list are Tustin (17 years), La Habra (15 years), Santa Ana (14 years), Huntington Beach (11 years)?, and Laguna Hills (7 years). The cities in California that have been on the Tree City USA list longest are Burbank and Sacramento (36 years each).—Arbor Day Foundation

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Irvine Housing Blog

Irvine Housing Blog

Link to Irvine Housing Blog

Open House Review: 19 Oakdale

Posted: 29 Oct 2013 05:00 AM PDT

Remodeled Woodbridge Village Single Family Home     
19 Oakdale  $747,500

Heading along West Yale Loop in Woodbridge and turning into the outer circle, off of Woodhollow takes you to this corner property on Oakdale that has been on the market 11 days as of Saturday.  There was a steady flow of visitors at the Saturday open house, and it will be interesting to see how the price, location and updates play out in this single family Woodbridge home.

Significant Numbers: Built in 1978, this 3 bedroom, two bath single level 1,564 sq. ft. home has HOA dues of $82 a month and the cost per square foot is $478. The lot size is 4,792 sq. ft.. The home has been newly remodeled and freshly painted.

Close Up:   Stepping into the tiled entry, to the left there is a good sized living room with a vaulted ceiling, Inglenook fireplace and windowed seating nook. Straight ahead there is a formal dining area that overlooks a small atrium. To the right a hall leads to the kitchen with breakfast bar and a casual dining area that could also be used as a family room. It opens to the patio and backyard.

The living room, dining room and kitchen all have new distressed hardwood flooring. New shutters have been added throughout the home, making the most of the numerous windows.

The master bedroom has a bath with a double vanity and newly remodeled  travertine tile shower. One of the 3 bedrooms serves as a study and the second bath has also been remodeled with enclosed tub and shower. There is an attached double garage with laundry.

Single Family
Bedrooms, 3
Baths, 2
Detached/no common walls
Association Pool, Spa
Central furnace, central air
Double garage
Two parking spaces
Laundry in garage

What will be considered here?   Even though it is in the outer circle off of West Yale Loop, Woodbridge’s  top schools, key recreation and community atmosphere  will add value. Overall, the home is a little snug in size and the corner location uses up quite a bit of the outside space. The upgrades in flooring, shutters and tile work well, and additional value might be achieved with expansions or more upgrades.

Who will choose this home? A young family looking for a single family home in Woodbridge may be attracted to this location. Or a mature couple looking for a single level home with extra bedrooms for guests, grandchildren and projects may find this home very workable.

Discuss on Talk Irvine:,10993.0.html

Recent Listings: 51 Sparrowhawk, $673,000; 5 Alteza, $719,000.
Recent Sales: 21 Morning Dove, $729,000; 2 Oakdale, $780,000

Monday, October 28, 2013

Irvine Housing Blog

Irvine Housing Blog

Link to Irvine Housing Blog

Open House Review: 18 Christamon

Posted: 28 Oct 2013 05:00 AM PDT

Just put on the market, 18 Christamon #30 is a two level, three bedroom townhouse with an attached two car garage.  It is a middle unit, sitting on a quiet, nice path. 

Asking Price: $525,000
Bedrooms: 3
Bathrooms: 2.5
Square Footage:  1,383
Lot Size: 1,000 sq ft
Price per Square Foot: $380
Property Type: Residential, Townhouse
Style: Two Level, Capecod
Year Built 1984
Community: Northwood, Amberwood
Days on Market: 8
HOA $329/mo

There are no Mello Roos.

Walking up to the home, a small patio sits next to the front door. 

With the home being adjacent to neighbors on both sides, the windows, which are original, face either the front or back of the home, but the rooms are light and bright.  Cabinets in the kitchen and bathrooms are original but some upgrades have been made and the rooms are in excellent, clean condition.  The home’s walls are cleanly painted.  The first floor has laminate or wood flooring while the rest of the house has carpet, which shows some wear on the staircase and few places upstairs. The ceilings are smooth and some of the lights have been upgraded.  

Upon entering there is a small dining area and small kitchen to the left.  Part of the kitchen wall opens up to the living room.  The kitchen’s lighting is upgraded to recessed lighting and the flooring is tile.  The white 4x4 tile countertop matches the white appliances and the kitchen is in great condition.  There are not a lot of cabinets for storage, but a small pantry is located at the far end of the kitchen.

The living room has a remodeled fireplace.

The half bathroom, small coat closet, entrance to the garage and staircase are located in the back left of the first floor.  The bathroom has original cabinets and countertops, but the cabinets have been nicely painted.  The flooring is tiled and shows nicely.

The upstairs has three bedrooms and two bathrooms.  The linen closet and secondary bedrooms are to the right while the bathroom is straight ahead.  The master bedroom is to the left. The secondary bedrooms are similar in size and both overlook the alley with the neighboring townhouse garages.  The first bedroom has a small walk in closet, while the second bedroom has a two-door sliding closet. 

The bathroom is mostly original but has updated tile flooring and fresh paint which shows nicely.  It comes with a single sink and tub/shower combination.

The master bedroom is a good size with an extra alcove and large walk-in closet.  The windows face the front of the home.  The downfalls of the master area are the carpet that runs into the toilet/sink area and the lack of a door between the bathroom and bedroom.  However, these are items are fixable.  The toilet is separate from the double sinks and large shower.  There is plenty of counter space between the sinks. 

Overall, the condo is in good condition and the layout is nice.  The only downfalls are the lack of kitchen cabinets, the carpet in the master bathroom and lack of a door between the master bedroom and bathroom.  Even though the bathrooms have many original features, they are very well maintained.  The community pool is very close to the unit.  The home is also within walking distance of Santiago Hills Elementary and Sierra Vista Middle Schools.

Discuss on Talk Irvine:,10991.0.html

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