$200,000 traffic light in Mill Valley?

Some Mill Valley residents are in an uproar about the proposed $200,000 traffic light to be installed at the intersection of Tennessee Valley Road and Shoreline Highway.  Others feel that, with the high volume of traffic on week ends, it is actually needed.  While I agree that the intersection in question is quite dangerous, I concur with those who feel that the timing may not be ideal as Mill Valley is facing a $20 million budget shortfall. 

 Watch Mike Sugarman’s  KPXRVideo Report

Wish list for improved transportation in Marin County

Representative Lynn Woolsey, D-Petaluma has  made requests for transportation projects in Marin County including the following: 

–  Golden Gate Bridge Seismic Retrofit Construction, $25 million. To complete the third phase of retrofitting the Golden Gate Bridge. 

–  Golden Gate Ferry — Sausalito Ferry Terminal improvements, $5 million. To replace the existing passenger loading facilities and improve accessibility for bicyclists. 

–  Highway 101 improvements in Greenbrae, $1.1 million. To the Transportation Authority of Marin to improve access and connectivity between major regional transportation hubs. 

For more detail, read the Transportation wish list | PressDemocrat.com article.

Marin County Real Estate: Parents pay plenty to get kids into better schools

 This San Francisco Chronicle article: Bay real estate: Parents pay plenty to get kids into better schools reminded me of several buyers with whom I have worked recently.  They are currently renting in San Francisco or own a home in another part of the Bay Area and are buying property in Marin. They are generally attracted to Marin because of both the great public schools and the Marin lifestyle.           

This is by no means a new trend: Marin County has always drawn folks from other parts of the Bay Area, but many buyers are taking advantage of the higher affordability of entry-level properties in Marin.  For buyers with school age children, paying rent or buying real estate and paying high property taxes in San Francisco does not make sense if they have to enroll their children in expensive private schools.  As they do the math, they figure that  buying a home in Marin is a well worth investment in the long run.  Tuition is an after tax expense and over the span of a child’s education can add up to a huge sum.             

Right now, it makes good sense to invest in Marin real estate when prices are at the lowest they have been in years and interest rates are still at historical lows.  The first time home buyer’s credit is also an important factor in the flurry of activity in the below $800,000 price range.  I was holding my new San Anselmo Listing open in the Seminary neighborhood today–a cute vintage 3 bedroom/2 bath home in a great location and good school district– and could not help but notice the large number of young couples coming through with babes in arm or on the way!  The property came on the market on Thursday and I already have an offer and am expecting more tomorrow!           

Neil Cummins - Corte Madera


  As a matter of fact, I have always felt very strongly about the significance of school districts and always advise buyers to take them into account even if they have no school age children because they highly impact the resale value of their investment.  Even in Marin, all school districts were not created equal, and properties in a good school district always sell at a premium in any kind of market.  Actually not only do they sell at a premium, but in some cases, they sell instead of lingering on the market for months and not selling at all.  I was working with some buyers recently who fell in love with a house in one of the least desirable school districts in Marin: they were ready to move forward with the purchase of this $2 million craftsman gem, but at the last minute opted to buy another property further south after having investigated the schools!  The price of the house had to be reduced by over $500,000 to finally sell.  Had it been in a better school district, it would have sold right away for a higher price.          

Brookside - San Anselmo


   MORE ABOUT THE SCHOOLS IN MARIN COUNTY: they have long enjoyed a reputation for excellence.  Not only are they consistently ranked among the top in the State, but their students have historical earned SAT scores well above state and national averages.  There are 19 public school districts in Marin, each governed by its own board of trustees and supported by both local and state funds.         

To find out more about our great Marin County public schools, please visit the Marin County Schools Page of my Website , where I have compiled comprehensive information on both public and private Marin Schools, school districts, map boundaries, and much more.           

If you are thinking of buying real estate in Marin County, call me at 415-464-3410 for Pressure Free Real Estate Advice You Can Trust!  Visit my website at www.YourPieceOfMarin.com.     

Just Listed – Charming Vintage Cottage in San Anselmo, CA – Offered at $799,000

 Old World Charm in Walk to Town Location in coveted San Anselmo Seminary neighborhood.
This bright & light, meticulously maintained vintage cottage will steal your heart.    
  • Three bedroom plus den and large bonus room and storage area on lower level.    
  • Quiet and peaceful, yet in walk-to-town location;
  • Two blocks from Wade Thomas award winning elementary school.
  • In the heart of the sought-after peaceful residential Seminary enclave of San Sanselmo. 
  •  20 minute walk to Phoenix Lake, close to Parks and Trails.
  • Three short blocks to downtown San Anselmo, fine dining, quaint boutiques, Antique Stores (130 dealers) and more…
  • Ideal for indoor/outdoor living with sunny deck, level backyard with many mature fruit trees, including apple, persimmon, pomegranate, plum and Meyer lemon.
  • Large,  eat-in kitchen with washer and dryer
  • Spacious living/dining room with wooden beams and window frames, gleaming hardwood floors and plenty of light.
  • Master suite on main level
  •  2 bedroom + den upstairs,
  • Bonus room + large  storage area on lower level.
  • One car garage plus off street parking.
  • Totally fenced in front and backyard; white picket fence in front, great curb appeal
  • Lilac, calla lilies, roses, tulips, daisies and much more…
  • Great value!

OFFERED AT $799,000.            

Find out more about this amazing San Anselmo Vintage Home in a Fabulous Walk to Town Location on the MLS.     

Living Room






Spacious Kitchen





Watch a short video about San Anselmo:            



Thinking of selling your home in Marin County? I would welcome the opportunity to show you how my extensive online marketing can get your home SOLD! Over 85% of all homes are found online. I create a dominating online presence for my clients’ properties.              


About the author: The above Real Estate information on 14 Melville Avenue, San Anselmo, CA 94960 was provided by Sylvie Zolezzi. Sylvie can be reached via email at sylvie.zolezzi@camoves.com, OR by phone at 415.464.3410.  Sylvie loves to help people move in and out of San Anselmo, California  and other Marin County towns.            

Thinking of selling your home? I have a passion for Real Estate and love to share my marketing expertise!            

For Marin County Homes, visit my Website at www.YourPieceOfMarin.com.            

Want  to have MLS access to beat other buyers to your dream home? Sign up with no obligation for MyREAlert at  www.YourPieceOfMarin.com.  Create multiple searches with your own criteria and search the MLS like a real estate agent.            

I service the following towns in Marin County: Sausalito, Belvedere, Tiburon, Mill Valley, Corte Madera, Larkspur, Greenbrae, Kentfield, San Anselmo, Ross, Fairfax, San Anselmo, San Rafael, Novato.             

Click here to view  Sylvie Zolezzi’s profile.            

Personal Umbrella Policy- a necessity for any homeowner


You do not have to be a millionaire to be sued like one. A single lawsuit can end up costing hundreds of thousands of dollars. More people file lawsuits for more money then ever before. The personal liability coverage available through a homeowners or automobile policy is simply not enough to protect you. An Umbrella policy can offer a higher level of liability coverage that protects you and your family from damage, which you may be held responsible.

The greater you assets, the more you potentially have at risk. Umbrella coverage can help protect you against personal liabilities that could attack a substantial portion of your current assets, future assets or future.

 What is a personal umbrella liability policy?

 A personal umbrella liability policy is an insurance policy designed to increase the liability protection over and above a standard home and/or auto insurance policy. The personal umbrella extends your liability protection beyond the primary policy limits, sold in million dollar increments up to $100 million dollar.

 Personal umbrella policies provide four elements of coverage:

 Personal Injury: Includes mental anguish, false arrest, wrongful entry/eviction, malicious prosecution, libel, slander, defamation of character, invasion of privacy or negligent infliction of emotional distress.          

Bodily Injury:  Includes physical injury or death – in some jurisdictions this includes emotional

Property damage: Includes destruction of the property of others, cost of recreation, and loss of use.

Defense coverage: Includes groundless, false, and fraudulent suite, loss of earnings, bail bond costs and other reasonable expenses.

 Insurance companies that cater to high net worth individuals.

 Chubb, Fireman’s Fund and AIG Private Client Group offer unique or expanded options, such as:

Personal injury: Enhanced coverage for individuals in the public eye

Not-for-profit directors and officers coverage: Coverage if you are sued for personal injury or property damage resulting for your volunteer service on the board of a not-for-profit organization and/or homeowners association

Employment-related lawsuits: It is not uncommon for domestic staff such as nannies, housekeepers, private assistants, private assistants, gardeners and other domestic staff to take their employers to court citing claims of wrongful termination, sexual harassment and discrimination.

Unlimited defense costs: Most companies limit the amount of money associated with the cost to defend a lawsuit. With Chubb, Fireman’s Fund and AIG Private Client Group the defense costs are unlimited.

 What does an Umbrella a cost?

 The price of an umbrella policy depends on three main rating factors: the dollar limit of coverage, the number of properties owned/rented and the number of automobiles/watercraft owned. A $1,000,000 policy above one house and two drivers has an annual premium  as low as $300 per year.  For a few hundred dollars, you may add an umbrella policy or increase your policy limits commensurate to your growing assets and risk factors.

 Real Life Umbrella Scenarios

  •  You are having a new couch delivered and while the delivery men carry it in, one slips on an area rug in your living room and breaks his arm. Damages, loss of wages and pain and suffering total $600,000.
  • While having a super bowl party one of your guests is leaning agents the railing of your deck it breaks and he falls on to the cement walk way. Now he is a paraplegic and needs 24 hour assistance.
  • A 13-year-old guest at your daughters pool party dives into the shallow end of the pool, and suffers devastating paralysis and injuries amounting to millions.
  • Your tenant sues you for wrongful eviction, unlawful entry and slander. The cost to defend alone may be in excess of $100,000.
  • One rainy night your 17-year-old son drives two friends to the movies his car spins out of control and he hits another car head on. One friend is killed and the two people in the other car are severally injured. Medical cost, lost earnings and damages amount to millions.

 Are your assets properly protected in the event of a catastrophic loss?

Costello and Sons Insurance Brokers

      Adrianne Peixotto 415-257-2131

Specialist in Risk Management for the Affluent Home Owner

Existing Home Sales Flatten And Point To A Much Better Spring

Existing Home Sales Feb 2008-Feb 2010As expected, Existing Home Sales fell in February, slipping 30,000 units versus January’s numbers. It’s the 4th straight month in which Existing Home Sales were lower, month-over-month.

An “existing” home is one that is previously owned and lived-in (i.e. not new construction).

Existing Home Sales peaked in November 2009, just as the First-Time Home Buyer Tax Credit was set to expire. Immediately thereafter, according to the National Association of Realtors®, monthly sales plunged 17 percent in December, then another 7 percent in January.

Comparatively, February’s dip is a modest 0.6 percent and is more in line with the pre-tax-credit Existing Home Sales trend.  The real estate market is rediscovering its normal. 

But “normal” may not last for long.

When the federal home buyer’s tax program was extended last year, the new rules stated that home buyers must be under contract for their new, respective homes on, or before, April 30, 2010 in order to claim up to $8,000 in federal money.  That deadline is approaching and many markets are experiencing a surge in buyer traffic as April 30 nears.

The Existing Home Sales data doesn’t reflect this new demand, nor the number of new contracts written. It only accounts for home closings and, in February, closings were down.

For today’s buyers, the market looks favorable. The federal tax credit is in place, mortgage rates stubbornly stick near all-time lows, and home prices are staying in check.

Existing Home Sales should gain through March and April, pressuring home prices higher. And, by the time the press reports the gains, the best deals in the city may already be gone.  Consider acting sooner rather than later.

Quintessential Cascase Park Home, Mill Valley, CA


About the author: The above Real Estate information on Marin County Real Estate was provided by Sylvie Zolezzi.  I can be reached via email at Sylvie@YourPieceOfMarin.com or by phone/text at 415.505.4789.  I help people move in and out of Marin County, just north of the Golden Gate Bridge.

I am here to help you make the smartest real estate move and build wealth, providing you with reliable real estate information and advice you can trust.

My knowledge and passion for Marin County are equaled by my commitment to helping you successfully navigate the process of buying and selling a home.  My business model enables me to provide superior service and a better client experience.  I know the neighborhoods, the schools, the amenities; I know where you want to live.  I know and love Marin County! 

I service the following towns in Marin County: Sausalito, Tiburon, Belvedere, Mill Valley, Corte Madera, Larkspur, Greenbrae, Kentfield,  Ross, San Anselmo, San Rafael, Fairfax, and Novato.

Marin Community pools together in support of ailing pitcher and his family

Bjorn Sandberg is a colleague of mine at Coldwell Banker and I made a point of attending the vigil for his son Gunnar on Sunday at sunset.  It was one of these very special and rare moments in life when the feeling of togetherness, love and community is absolutely overwhelming.  There were many teary eyes in the huge crowd that attended, candle in hand and love and prayers in their heart.  I was very proud of our community.  All my love and prayers to Bjorn and Lisa for the prompt recovery of Gunnar. 

Read the Marin IJ article: Marin Catholic students, staff pray for ailing pitcher – Marin Independent Journal.