What do you love the most about your neighborhood?
We LOVE Burlingables! Where do I start? Friendly neighbors, who actually stop and talk when you see them; block parties so that don't just recognize our neighbors, but actually have relationships with them; the beauty of the tree-lined streets and side walks for my 7 yr old to walk to his friends' houses or ride his bike; walking distance to Washington Park and downtown; and the most spectacular thing is that our neighborhood school (Washington) not only has good test scores, but is in walking distance so all of our closest friends here also live within walking distance to the us and the school. A brilliant community.
What brought you to Burlingame, and how did you hear about Raziel?
A job transfer to the SF headquarters from the Boston office. We decided if we were going to uproot and move across country, that we wanted it all in our new location. For us, having it 'all' meant a town with a community feel, strong public schools, walkable neighborhood with sidewalks and and walkable downtown. We found that and so much more in Burlingame! We were living on the east coast at the time and in our online research, came across Raziel's videos on YouTube educating viewers on burlingame neighborhoods, schools, and local businesses. After watching EVERY SINGLE video, we quickly realized that Burlingame was for us, but that we only wanted to work with Raziel. If he put this much effort in to educating viewers he did not know, we figured he'd be remarkable at educating his clients about the area and he did not disappoint. In fact, we have never felt so cared for during a home search. In past home buying experiences, we were left on our own to research the local area. Raziel personally drove us around every Burlingame neighborhood with custom maps to help us determine the perfect neighborhood for us!
What was your journey like buying a home?
We started out in a rental since there was very little inventory in the neighborhoods we wanted to live. Even though we were now 'situated', Raziel still actively worked with us to find us our dream home. We spent a month and a half going to open houses or private viewings of listings and then we found the house for us! It was a little daunting because we had not finished unpacking all of our boxes in the rental, but we knew we had to move on it if we wanted to live in our desired neighborhood. The actual home buying process happened so quickly, but before we put in the offer or met with Raziel to determine our offer and negotiation strategy, he had already connected us to an house inspector he has a close relationship with and his contact at a local bank the pre approved us for a loan. We also determined, in previous conversations with Raziel, what our spending cap was, so we were fully prepared to jump when the right house caught our eye. Turns out we were only the second highest bidder out of the TWELVE offers so we did not get our first house, but we were even better prepared and a few days later had our offer accepted at a house one block away that was even better for us in hindsight!
What surprised you the most about the home buying process?
How quickly the market moves here. Raziel explained this to us, as it is very different from where we moved from, but it still is a lot to take in going through it!! (And of course the home prices which goes with out saying!!)
My experience working with Raziel was:
Enjoyable! (Not a word I'd ever used before to describe past experiences working with realtors In fact, we were extremely 'tired' of our last realtor back in Massachusetts and literally could not continue our relationship with her after we closed on the house!! We got the house we wanted but the process was such a drag and we no longer respected the team we hired.)
Working with Raziel was so much different. He spent time getting to know us and fully understand what we were looking for. We originally sought him out for his in-depth knowledgeable of the market and his commitment to educating us on the buying process in this area, though quickly found he had a lot more to offer than just his competence and expertise.
His great enthusiasm and desire to make the buying process enjoyable was remarkable. Raziel was committed to finding us our dream home and for a price we were comfortable paying versus getting us into any home just to meet our deadline. Even though there was very little inventory, he was able to find us a rental though his connections, which allowed us to register our son in our preferred elementary school.
As we started to settle in, we continued to reach out to Raziel for his advice or recommendations on family events or business referrals while he continued to take us to open houses and educate us on the market.
We saw Raziel's true colors when our house buying criteria changed. His understanding and friendship helped us through what could have been a very stressful situation. He made us feel really comfortable and in three short months fulfilled our house buying dreams.
It turns out that we found our home the afternoon of game 4 of the World Series and we were so thankful that we had such a dedicated agent as he delivered our offer and helped us negotiate a great deal THAT night!! We are so grateful that we found Raziel and can not imagine a better experience searching for/buying a home or feeling welcome in a new community. Raziel is unlike any other agent we have ever worked with and highly recommend him.
Dining room. I've had thirteen second graders around the dining nook for parties, quiet dinners with family, wine with my friends, etc.. This room has seen it all. It is cozy, intimate and inviting. Love it!!
Being a mom, running a marathon, climbing Mt Fuji, earning an MBA, scuba certification (after quitting TWICE - not my thing)
Organizations I love:
BCE Burlingame Community Education Foundation. It is the fundraising arm of our public schools. This organization is what helps make our schools great and keeps great families in our neighborhoods. Burlingame would NOT be the same without it. I am a proud volunteer and supporter.
ASPCA I've been an angel supporter ever since rescuing my first Weim, Sampson, back in 2001.
To be a 'back up singer/dancer' in a band with my friends!!
Favorite hidden gem:
Ogunquit, ME. A charming, sleepy, unique ocean front town that we've vacationed from when I was a child through last year before we moved with my own family.
Moving cross country to Burlingame leaving my family, extended family, family, and city I knew/loved behind.
Folding clothes at the Gap! And my first job out of college was being an Assistant Buyer at Bloomingdales in New York City.
Home for the Holidays (And anything with Robert Downey JR.)
Best advice received:
It's cliche but true: "Don't sweat the small stuff"
My top bucket list item:
Learn to dance! (I just started swing. I have a long way to go and other forms I'd like to try.) Get back to cycling.