Community Events -- Tree Lighting and Party in Carmel, Dec 4, 2015

Tonight is the Holiday Tree Lighting and Party in Carmel. The entertainment at the Carmel Plaza starts at 3:30, with the Christmas Tree lighting at 5:45. See you there!…


Community Events-- Christmas in the Inns, Pacific Grove, Dec 1 and 2, 2015

Visit 10 bed & breakfast inns decorated for the holidays in Victorian-era splendor.  Limited number of tickets sold.  Entertainment and light refreshments served. The hours are 6:00pm - 9:00pm. For information & tickets, call: 831-373-3304

Tickets must be picked up at the Chamber office at 584 Central Avenue



Community Events -- Monterey County Fair

Lots of fun!  Starting tomorrow through the weekend, the Monterey County Fair has something for everyone. Rides, exhibits, livestock competition, loads of food stalls and of course the pig races!!



Community Events -- Pebble Beach Concours

Concours Alert! 

This is the spectacular Concours week with events held throughout the area. Many spectacular events, with the culmination on Sunday for the Concours at Pebble Beach Lodge. Here is the calendar of events:


Community Events -- Carmel 

The Carmel Plaza is presenting a summer jazz series on Fridays throughout the month of August. The jazz is free with a food and drink package costing $15. Every week a different band, a different food vendor! Lots of fun! From 5-7 Fridays to Aug 28.  Here is the link to the event:


Community Events -- Feast of Lanterns-- Wed. July 22, 2015 - Sunday July 27, 2015

Starting tomorrow is the opening ceremony for the Feast of Lanterns festival in Pacific Grove. Lots of fun activities including the Pet Parade on Friday and the Pageant and Fireworks on Saturday!


Community Events -- July 18- August 1, 2015

The reknowned Carmel Bach Festival is held this year from July 18- August 1, 2015.  This multiple week music festival brings many music lovers to the Monterey Peninsula for world class music and cultural events. There are activities for young and old alike. See for more info. 


July 2015 Monthly Newsletter

Semi Annual market report January to June 30, 2015

Now that half the year is over (already!) I thought it would be time to review the market in the Monterey Peninsula cities and see how we have fared so far this year...

Most cities to continue to make their upward climb in values with the higher priced markets showing a weakening in price appreciation and an increasing days on market. Both Carmel and Pebble Beach are showing a flat appreciation rate, in fact Pebble Beach has declined over the same period in 2014, though this may be attributed to the predominance of lower priced homes in Pebble Beach skewing the numbers somewhat. All other markets, Pacific Grove, Monterey, and Carmel Valley show appreciation of values -- Monterey at a modest 5.3%, Carmel Valley at 10.3%, and Pacific Grove at a whopping 12.6% from the same period last year. Days on market have also decreased in these cities, indicating a continuing strong demand. The interesting part of the data shows that the markets with the decreasing demand, stabilizing prices and lowest activity (Carmel and Pebble Beach) are also showing a lower list price to sales price ratio -- at 94%. Compare this to Pacific Grove and Monterey, which are both showing a list price to sales price ratio of over 97%. High activity = a higher sales price percentage! As prices move up and interest rates move up at the same time, will this start to take some steam out of the market? We shall see...some buyers will certainly feel the squeeze as this is sustaining some of the market energy we are seeing now. The next 6 months should be very interesting!




July 4, 2015 -- Community Events

Looking for some 4th of July fun?  Try these different city events

Carmel -- 12-4 Devendorf Park

Pacific Grove -- 11-2 Caledonia Park -- July 4th BBQ with great food and bands!

Monterey -- 10am parade , 11-4 Lawn Party Colton Hall

                 7pm -- Monterey Pops Orchestra -- Golden State Theatre, on Alvarado St.

AND THE ONLY FIREWORKS SHOW! --- King City City Park, fireworks at nightfall 


Good Old Days Celebration -- April 11-12, 2015 -- Community Events

This FREE 2-day celebration draws over 30,000 people: tons of family activities & events, 200+ vendors, a music festival, and more! 


March 2015 Monthly Newsletter


This month I thought I would review the condo/townhouse market on the Peninsula:

Since the bottom of the market (winter 2011) the condo market has surged in all Monterey Peninsula markets. As with the single family homes, there has been some variation among the cities. The cities that have seen the greatest condo appreciation have been Pacific Grove and Monterey, at 41% and 40% respectively. Both have seen over 15% increases in price per square foot in the past year. Carmel condo prices have jumped 32% since 2011, with a 10.6% increase in the past year, Pebble Beach lagging somewhat with a 28.8% increase and 9% in the past year. These are truly remarkable gains and show the strength in the condominium/townhouse market has matched the rebound in the single family home market. Our Monterey Peninsula market as a whole is enjoying a strong recovery and looks to continue through 2015.


2015 AT & T Pebble Beach Pro Am Golf Tournament -- Feb 9-15, 2015 -- Community Events

Tired of cold weather? Come to the Pebble Beach Pro Am golf tournament!  The weather has been glorious, in the 70's (sadly not much rain) and time to enjoy some golf on some of the most beautiful golf courses in the world!  This week-long event brings many visitors to the Peninsula, second in popularity only to the world famous Concours Elegance car event in August. For more info:   



Real Estate Market Analysis Year End 2014--  Janauary 6, 2015

Now that the data is in, it is time to review what happened in the 2014 real estate market.

2014 was a great year for real estate on the Monterey Peninsula! Gone are the days of DE-preciation, we are solidly back in the AP-preciation market now, with a couple years of strongly appreciating prices. The year end analysis of the Monterey Peninsula cities of Monterey, Pacific Grove, Carmel, and Pebble Beach show that all markets have appreciated, albeit some more than others. The real star of the market was Pebble Beach, that had been so sluggish last year, is now roaring ahead with several super-high end sales.. a few even in the $30M range! The high end market has taken hold in other areas too--Pacific Grove had it's own record breaking $8.6M sale and Carmel-by-the-Sea found it's share of $6M sales.

The price per square foot has jumped up in every market. As previously mentioned, Pebble Beach showed the largest increase with a 13.3% jump in price per square foot since January, 2014. Monterey was next with a 11.1% increase in price per square foot, followed by Pacific Grove with a 9.8% increase; Carmel-by-the-Sea's increase was 7%. Interestingly, the areas of Carmel outside the city limits (toward Carmel Highlands and into the Valley) had only modest increases at 2.5%. How will this translate into 2015? Only time will tell...

Data was pulled from single family sales only, condos/townhouses, vacant land were not included in this analysis.  

And, as always, if you would like to know what your home is worth, please contact me for a personal analysis of your home's value.


Annual Inns of Distinction Tour-- Dec. 7, 2014-- Community Events

Enjoy this annual opportunity to explore some of Carmel's most beauiful inns, decked out in holday splendor, while sipping local wines and snacking on suptuous treats from downtown restaurants.Dec. 7.  This self guided tour is hosted from 2-5 pm on Sunday, December 7. For more information,


Christmas in the Adobes--Dec. 5 and 6, 2014 -- Community Events

Join us for a step back into Monterey's past during the annual Christmas in the Adobes.  Experience historic adobes dressed for the holidays by candlelight and enjoy refreshments and live performances with volunteers in period attire.  All are within an easy walk from each other.


November 2014 Monthly Newsletter

We've had a couple mega-sales in the past couple months...$31M and $28M in Pebble Beach, setting new records for the area. Now that we are fully into the fall season, I thought it would be a good time to explore the summer activity, where the market activity was, and where the market activity has been so far in the autumn.

In summer, June through August, there were 146 sales in the cities of Monterey, Carmel, Pacific Grove and Monterey (not counting the unincorporated areas). Nearly half, 46% were over $1M, with 4 sales over $5M. The sales activity under $700K accounted for only 30% of the sales. As we move into fall, from September to present, 44% are over $1M, with the number of homes sold under $700K dropping to only 17% of the total number of another 2 big sales over $10M in Pebble Beach. This data indicates a real turn around this year with a big uptick in sales activity in the upper price ranges. The activity in these markets has long been weak, and is now seeing a great surge of activity. The moderate price ranges, under $700K are leveling out in this fall season after seeing so much frenzied activity in the past year.


October 1, 2014 -- Community Events

Join us this weekend for the Pacific Grove Historic Home tour on Sunday, October 5.  View Victorian and Craftsman style homes, many privately owned and only available for viewing through this event.  Don't miss it! Tickets $25 from the Pacific Grove Heritage Society.


August 12, 2014 -- Community Events

Welcome to Concours Week! This week will be filled with lots of car events for enthusiasts and novices alike. Here is the schedule of events



August 11, 2014 -- Market Update

If you or one of your friends is looking for an affordable home in Carmel...look no further! My new listing at Riverwood is not only beautiful, it is affordable! See it here  4000 Rio Rd #1, Carmel

August 4, 2014 -- Monthly Newsletter

Hope you have been enjoying the summer...and what beautiful weather we have been having! The sun has also been shining on the local Monterey Peninsula real estate market with some healthy summer activity. Interest rates have remained low, contrary to predictions that rates would now be in the 5% arena. The prevailing low interest rates are certainly contributing to the current market activity....

Though in other parts of the country, the real estate market may be slowing down, local market data shows a continuing strong real estate market on the Monterey Peninsula. This month I have researched and pulled data to see just how well our market is doing...

Comparing May-August 2014 to the same period last year, data shows that all markets have a slightly higher number of sales this year, with the exception of Monterey. Days on market are also lower this year, indicating a robust market. Why is Monterey showing less sales this year? One answer may be the increase in price per square foot.  In every city the cost per square foot is increasing: Carmel--3%, Pebble Beach--5%, Pacific Grove-- 4%, but Monterey is 16% ! Monterey buyers may be feeling the squeeze as properties enter the higher price points with the large cost per sf price jump. Though the high end market has gained momentum in Carmel and Pebble Beach (as evidenced by a proliferation of recent sales in $5M+ range), the 16% jump in cost per square foot may be more than the Monterey market activity can sustain.

(multi-residential and townhouses were not included in the analysis.)


July 22, 2014 -- Community Events

For over one hundred years the citizens of Pacific Grove have celebrated its history and culture with a summer festival called the Feast of Lanterns. Filled with food, fun and fireworks this multi-day event begins tomorrow and goes through the weekend. For more info see:


July 11, 2014 -- Community Events

Coming up this week is the reknowned Carmel Bach Festival.  This multiple week music festival brings many music lovers to the Monterey Peninsula for world class music and cultural events. There are activities for young and old alike. See for more info.  

June 2014 Monthly Real Estate Newsletter

Summer is upon us and the market has revved up with the season. This month, I will review which cities have had the most sales activity in the spring season, and which cities are the most active going into the summer.

Including both single family homes and townhouses, in the period from March 1 to June 1, Monterey and Pacific Grove continue to have the most active markets, with 66 sales in Monterey and 52 in Pacific Grove. Carmel was a strong 3rd with 47 sales and Pebble Beach followed the pack at 36. The market activity appears to be changing however, with Carmel moving ahead of Pacific Grove in pending sales activity. Both Carmel and Monterey have 29 pending sales at this date, which is interesting due to the difference in price points. This indicator shows that the market activity is strong, regardless of the price. Pacific Grove has fallen behind in activity with fewer pending sales, but still ahead of the ever lagging Pebble Beach market which is showing 15 pending sales, 18% of the available listings. It is interesting to note that the Pebble Beach market continues to be sluggish in comparison with the other Monterey Peninsula cities of Carmel, Pacific Grove and Monterey...


May 2014 Monthly Real Estate Newsletter

We are now full swing into the spring season and activity is increasing with the season. This month, I will take a look at the average days on market for homes that have sold since March 1, and the percentage of list price to sales price in 3 major price categories-- up to $750K, $750-$1.25M, and over $1.25M.

Up to $750,000-- In Monterey, Pacific Grove and Pebble Beach this was the most active market price point in terms of both the number of days on market and the list price ratio. Each city showed an average of 98% list price to sales price ratio, and days on market varied from 47 (Pacific Grove) to 144 (Pebble Beach). Interestingly, this was a weak market in Carmel, though probably due to the fact that there were only 2 sales in this price point since March 1.

$750,000-$1,250,000-- In both Pacific Grove and Monterey, this price point was just as strong as the under $750K range. Both cities showed 98% list price to sales price ratio with a slight increase in days on market. Both Pebble Beach and Carmel showed a list price/sales price ratio at 93%.

$1,250,000+ -- Now this is where it gets interesting...You would expect that as prices go up, there is less demand, higher days on market and a lower sales price ratio? Not true! Carmel's most active market was over $1.250M, with the lowest days on market and it's highest sales price ratio ... 95%! Just the opposite in Pebble Beach, in this price range we see higher days on market and a lower sales price ratio of 88%. What would explain this?

To explain this difference, we have to look at the overall activity in each city during this period. Both Pacific Grove and Monterey have 54% and 58% of available listings in escrow, so their data is similar, but in Carmel 41% of listings are in escrow, while Pebble Beach has only 22%. This is where the difference lies, the Carmel market has picked up a lot of steam in the upper value ranges since the beginning of the year and is surpassing Pebble Beach in buyer activity. Last year, both markets were stagnating with similar low rates of activity due to the price range of most homes. Demand is where the answer lies! Thankfully, this year we are already seeing an increasing inventory of homes and there are more properties available for buyers.

(All statistics refer to single family homes; condos, townhouses, multi-residential were not included in the analysis.)


April 2014 Monthly Real Estate Newsletter

The spring season activity has begun and we are starting to see some increase of inventory in the local real estate market. It's about time! Though the number of homes available for sale is still low, we have moved above the historically low inventory of the past few months.

This month, I am reviewing the trend of days on market, i.e. how many days a house is on the market before it goes into escrow. This is a good indication of real estate activity, how much demand there are for the homes, and ultimately, how it will affect property values. When days on market are low, generally under 90 days, the indication is that there are more buyers than sellers and values will move up. A more level marketing time of 3 to 6 months creates a stable market value, marketing times over 6 months indicate a slower market with less buyer demand. In any case, our Monterey Peninsula market cities vary in market activity, some areas more active than others. Let' s see how they fare:

Comparing 4th quarter 2013 to 1st quarter 2014, two cities, Carmel and Pacific Grove have seen reduced days on market. Pacific Grove from 87 to 83 days, Carmel from 173 to 164 days. The pending sales (now in escrow) show only 56 days on market in Pacific Grove and 117 days in Carmel, an indication that there is even more activity in these cities. (Just sold my last listing in PG in 2 days!) In Monterey and Pebble Beach however, the reverse is true, the days on market are increasing, from 71 to 77 in Monterey, and 135 to 145 in Pebble Beach. In all cities, the price point was also a determining factor in days on market. In every city, properties whose list price was lower that $1M had lower days on market, some significantly less, more than 50% ! What does this mean? In cities where days on market are low, there is strong sales activity, decreasing days on market mean that the market is getting more active, whereas high days on market and increasing days show a market that is slowing and stabilizing. This, of course, is always a moving target and fluctuates constantly, what the future will bring? We will see!

(All statistics refer to single family homes; condos, townhouses, multi-residential were not included in the analysis.)


April 5-5, 2014 -- Community Events

Don't forget this weekend is Pacific Grove's Good Old Days from 9-5 Sat and Sun.  Events include the parade, craft's fair, petting zoo, quilt show, and lots of musical entertainment! It is a great event reportedly bringing 30,000 people to Pacific Grove!   See you there!

March 28, 2014-- Market Update

Check out my great new listing in Pacific Grove!  This charming 2 bedroom home is situated on an oversized lot with prime expansion potential.  Here is the link: 367 Gibson Ave




March 7, 2014-- Community Event

The newly formed Pacific Grove Pops Orchestra will be performing it's debut concert this Sunday at 2pm. This peninsula community orchestra consists of local musicians and student musicians and is FREE for their debut performance at the PG Performing Arts Center on Forest Ave! They will be performing movie favorites including Star Wars, Harry Potter and Pirates of the Caribbean, a treat the whole family will enjoy! 



March 4, 2014 -- Monthly Newsletter

This month we will check in and see how the local Monterey Peninsula Real Estate market is faring so far in 2014.

The first two months of 2014 have started on a strong note with cities of Carmel, Pacific Grove, Pebble Beach and Monterey all showing strong sales activity. Low inventory continues to plague the market and buyers are continuing to vie for new listings. Multiple offers are returning and in every market, both the average price per square foot and average sales price has increased over the prior two month period of Nov/Dec 2013. The two markets that lagged behind last year in the number of sales, Carmel and Pebble Beach, are experiencing a surge of activity to date in 2014, including a higher list price to sales price ratio (95% and 93% respectively). Pacific Grove and Monterey which continue to have ultra low inventories, are seeing higher list price to sales price ratios (96% and 98% respectively) and lower days on market. Nationwide sales reports are showing a slowing real estate market, but not on the Monterey Peninsula! Data indicates the market continues to surge ahead with values still on the increase.

(All statistics refer to single family homes, condos/townhouses, multi-residential were not included in the analysis.)

And, as always, if you would like to know what your home is worth, please contact me for a personal analysis of your home's value. Or, if you are interested in purchasing a home, I will be happy to set you up to receive new listings and price reductions the minute they appear on the MLS.

Have a wonderful March and enjoy the rain! Laurel

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February 12, 2014 -- Market Update

Check out our new listing in Pacific Grove, a cute little cottage just waiting for its new owner! $549,000. Click on the link for more info:

607 Monterey Ave, PG


January 31, 2014 -- Community Events

Next month Pebble Beach hosts the annual AT & T Golf Tournament held at several courses throughout the Pebble Beach area.  Golf pros and celebrities compete for a $1M+ first place purse.  More info and times: 

Photo of the first Pro Am--1947


January 10, 2014--Market Update

Happy New Year! Today I will review the most important question of the New Year... "What happened in the real estate market in 2013?!"

On the whole the market is continuing the rebound from the recession years of 2008-2010, when the markets across the board were showing declining values in every area. The Monterey Peninsula is now firmly out of negative territory, with each city showing firm appreciation, some markets are even in the double digits! Pacific Grove led the pack with a remarkable 22% appreciation in 2013. Yes, there was a $3.150M oceanfront sale that was unusual, but even removing that from the analysis, brings the appreciation still to a 20% increase over 2012. Carmel-by-the-Sea (including Carmel Woods and Carmel Point) was the next runner up, with a 17.6% appreciation in 2013. Monterey was 3rd with a 14.6% increase, followed by Pebble Beach, which lagged in with a single digit increase of 7.4%. This is very encouraging, though we are still below the high 2006 mark. And if your worrying that this is another "bubble", remember that the factors that led to the real estate cataclysm are no longer in play ...namely, 100% financing and no doc loans. No one wants to go through that again...including the lenders!!

(All statistics refer to single family homes only)

December 20, 2013-- Market Update

As we start wrapping up the year, it is a good time to start accessing how the market fared in 2013. Comparing 2012 to 2103 (to date), it was surprising to see that the results have not been uniform in the Peninsula cities of Carmel-by-the-Sea, Pebble Beach, Pacific Grove and Monterey. The markets that were a big sluggish in 2012--Pebble Beach and Monterey have picked up and already surpassed the prior year in the number of sales. Pebble Beach showed 98 sales in 2012, with 106 so far in 2013; Monterey had 175 sales in 2012 with 195 to date. In the other cities of Pacific Grove and Carmel, the opposite is seen: Both markets have seen less sales than the prior year of 2012. Pacific Grove had 167 sales in 2012, with 150 sales to date, Carmel -by-the-Sea had 130 sales in 2012 with 110 sales so far in 2013 (15% less). Whatever the results, the market is still showing a lot of activity. Could the reason for the lower sales in those areas be the lack of inventory of available homes for sale? As of Dec 20, 2013 there are only 32 homes for sale in Pacific Grove!! That has to be an all time low--Anybody interested in selling?

December 13, 2013 -- Community Events

More difficult choices this weekend!  DanceKids of Monterey presents "The Nutcracker" at the Sunset Center in Carmel on Friday, Saturday and Sunday, Dec 13-15.  In it's 20th year, this is an annual delight, one that adults and kids alike look forward to every year. Also on Saturday, Dec 14 and Sunday, December 15, The Monterey Peninsula Voices' holds their annual holiday concert at the Pacific Grove Performing Art Center.  This 100+ member community chorus has even traveled to the Olympics to perform!  Finally, the Camerata Singers will have a series of concerts in Salinas, Carmel and Pacific Grove on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.  So much to see in so little time! 


December 5, 2013 -- Community Events

What a wonderful weekend of holiday events we have coming this weekend! First is Christmas in the Adobes, beginning Friday, Dec 6th and continuing Saturday. Enjoy this signature event by strolling through the adobes decked out in their festive attire with music and holiday treats. Tickets are available at the Cooper Museum store on 525 Polk St. For more information here is the link:  Christmas in the Adobes

Also coming this Sunday is the Carmel Inns of Distinction Tour sponsored by the Carmel Heritage Society, where you have a chance to tour some of "Carmel's most charming and historic inns." For more information, including where to get tickets, here is the link:  Carmel Inns of Distinction

December 2, 2013 -- Community Events

Looking for something fun to do for the holidays? On Tues, Dec. 3 and Wed. Dec 4, Pacific Grove is sponsoring The "Christmas in the Inns", where 8 bed and breakfast inns are decked out in holiday splendor, with refreshments and entertainment. Some of the inns that are participating are the Seven Gables, Gosby House and Asilomar Conference Center. For a list of inns and more information see

November 19, 2013 -- Market Update

Check out our beautiful new listing on Grand Ave in Pacific Grove-- 2bed 2 bath, 1568sf .  Here is the link:

 Grand Avenue Gorgeous!


November 3, 2013 -- Market Update

Well, it certainly has been an exciting October, full of ups and downs! The government shutdown which lasted for over two weeks, held everyone's attention, waiting to see how much of an impact it would have on our economy. It has been a couple weeks since the shutdown has ended and a good opportunity to review the influence (if any) that it has had on our local real estate housing market. After reviewing the data prior to the shutdown, during the shutdown and after the shutdown, I am happy to report that it had very little impact on the real estate market at all. In all cities, of Pacific Grove, Pebble Beach, Carmel and Monterey, the activity prior to the shutdown remained level throughout the shutdown, and surprisingly, has remained the same after the shutdown also. Only Pebble Beach has had an uptick of sales activity after the shutdown ended. It was as if the Monterey Peninsula put on their blinders and kept plowing ahead. The data reviewed included new listings coming on the market, the number of listings going into escrow and the number of homes sold, during each period. This is great news... that the market remained stable and was not negatively impacted by the government shutdown. The only downside is that it did nothing for our low, low inventory of available homes! 


October 25, 3013 -- Community Events

It's a weekend of music! The Monterey Rock & Chocolate Festival at the fairgrounds, the Juillard String Quartet at the Sunset Ceter, and the Cajun zydeco band, Tom Rigney & Flambeau at PG's Performing Art Center. Something for everyone! Also a huge music alert -- classical music is back on our radio!  For everyone who has been missing classical KRML (my hand is up), a LA based music station -- classical KMozart is on our air waves at 97.9 FM, also broadcasting online. Welcome, we are glad to have you!!


October 22, 2013 -- Market Update

Check out our new listing on Gibson Ave in Pacific Grove! 3 Bedrroms, 2 baths on an extra large street-to-alley lot...$719,000. See "our featured listings" on the sidebar for more info...


October 15, 2013 -- Market update

Now in day 15, I thought it would be a good time to review if the shutdown is affecting the local real estate market. Looking at the number of new listings, and the number of homes that went into escrow in the period since the government shutdown began -- Oct 1, comparing to the prior 15 day period.  All markets appear to be stable:  Carmel-by-the-Sea, Pebble Beach amd Monterey all had a similar number of new homes come on the market in both periods, only Pacific Grove had less.  The number of homes that have gone into escrow since the shutdown has remained consistent with the prior period, only Pebble Beach has experienced a slowdown since Oct 1. In fact, Carmel-by-the-Sea and Monterey has had even MORE properties go into escrow!  Analysis = market is still strong on the Monterey Peninsula regardless of what is happening (or not happening) in Washington. Will that change soon?


October 11, 2013 --Community Events

Celebrate the 5th year of the Carmel Art and Film Festival this weekend, with over 100 films, lectures, forums, interviews and parties. Held at various venues throughout Carmel and Pacific Grove, films include Sundance and Cannes Film Festival winners. For more info:



October 8, 2013-- Market Overview

Lots of talk about the government shutdown and how it is affecting the housing market.  Lenders are having difficulty confirming buyer's tax returns with the IRS, Social Security numbers and employment verification for federal employees, this is translating into longer escrow periods and a lot of uncertainty.  Locally, the market activity has taken a little slowdown since the shutdown began due to buyer's lack of confidence about how the market is being affected.  It doesn't help that there are rumors that "no loans will close now" , and "only cash deals now" which is erroneous.  Some lenders are making moves to overcome the issues involved with the shutdown and are taking steps to assure buyers that their loans will fund and close.   

October 4, 2013 -- Community Events

The Robinson Jeffers Fall Festival includes the Sunset Celebration in the Tor House Gardens today from 5-7. Enjoy fine wine, food and poetry reads under the clear blue skies! More events are scheduled in Carmel including The Carmel River Beach Poetry Walk on Saturday. For more info see


September 27, 2013 -- Community Events

Artists throughout Monterey County are opening their studios to the public this weekend, who will have an opportunity to get a rare glimpse into the work spaces of local painters, sculptors, jeweler, potters and photographers. This self guided tour is throughout the cities of Monterey, Paific Grove, Pebble Beach, Carmel, Carmel Valley and Seaside.  See for more information.  Sept 28 -29, 2013.

September 24, 2013 -- Market Update

Market activity appears to be slowing down in September with some areas showing a greater slow down than others.  Pacific Grove and Monterey continue to lead the pack with the greatest activity.  Pacific Grove has 21% of listings entering into escrow this month, Monterey is at 19%.  Carmel and Pebble Beach are experiencing a greater slowing of activity, Carmel has slowed significantly with only 5% of listings entering into contract this month. Pebble Beach is at 10%, which is more typical for the Pebble Beach market. Activity continues to be strongest in the lower price ranges.  

September 10, 2013 -- Market Overview

Many people are asking if the increase of interest rates has had an impact on slowing the buyer demand for homes. Now that we are a couple months down the road from the rate jump in June (reportedly jumping 1.5% in a matter of 4-6 weeks) we have some data to see just how much the interest rate jump affected the pending home sales. As is typical in this area, the results vary from city to city.

In Pacific Grove from March/April, the properties entering into escrow stayed level at 17 per month, then dropped in May to 12 and June to 10 as rates increased. It is apparent that the rates had a significant effect on the market with this 40% decline in activity! After the low of 10 sales in June, the pending sales increased in July to 15, and in August to 19, showing a strong rebound in sales. The markets in Carmel-by-the-Sea, Pebble Beach and Monterey show the same swing in pending sales activity (Monterey less than the others). In Carmel, March and April held at 15 listings going into escrow, dropping to 11 in May, 10 in June-- a 33% decline in activity. July sales increased to 14, once again rebounding back. Pebble Beach continues to have lower overall sales activity than neighboring cities, dropping from 10 sales in April, to 7 in May, and 6 in June, rebounding to 14 in July. Monterey has changed from 14 pending sales in April, 17 in May, down to 9 in June, also rebounding to 13 in July and 18 in August. Though the rates have dropped again slightly, they are certainly not at the level seen in the earlier part of this year. What other motivation would explain the rebound in buyer activity? Could it be that buyer sentiment is reflecting the feeling that rates are on their way up again, and now, having experienced a taste of this reality, they are ready to buy before the rates go higher? This is an interesting point of view that will reveal itself in the months to come....


July 23, 2013-- Community Events

Tomorrow starts our annual Feast of Lanterns celebration, culminating with the pageant on Saturday.  Why not celebrate with dinner at the newly opened Beach House Restaurant on Lover's Point or a dip in the newly refurbished (and heated) Children's Pool?  Here is the link:


July 17, 2013--Market overview

As we have finished the first half of the year, this is a good opportunity to review the changes we have seen in the local real estate market since the beginning of 2013. Buyer activity has continued to remain strong throughout the year, even as interest rates begin to creep up. The available homes for sale are still in under supply, though inventory is increasing slightly, particularly in the upper price ranges. And for the question that is most important in everyone's minds...what is happening with home values? In our local markets, many cities have seen increases of value, but it is uneven across the board. Through analysis of closed sales, Carmel-by-the-Sea leads the pack with the greatest increase in value at 19% in 2013. (The sales are compared June 2012 to June 2013). Pacific Grove is next at an 9% increase since the beginning of the year, followed by Monterey at 2%. The surprising statistic finds that Pebble Beach has remained level with neither an increase nor decrease in value. Though there have been some pretty high profile sales in Pebble Beach this year, there have also been some pretty steep discounts in the list price to sales price ratio. What will the remainder of 2013 bring? Stay tuned!

July 12, 2013-- Local events

Tomorrow begins the Carmel Bach Festival, a local event started in 1935. Originally started as a four day concert  event, it has now grown to a two week celebration of concerts, recitals, master classes and lectures. "The Festival’s mission is to celebrate the works, inspiration and ongoing influence of Johann Sebastian Bach worldwide by immersing audiences in a festival experience integrating music, education and ideas."  Check this link for more info and tickets:  

April 12, 2013-- Local events

This weekend is the "Good Old Days" event in Pacific Grove with lots of food, music and fun, including the most amazing quilt show you have ever seen! Here is more info:

February 1, 2013 -- Local events


Next week begins the annual AT & T Golf Tournament in Pebble Beach. From Feb 4-10, this event features a week of golf by pros and celebrities on some of the most beautiful courses in the world. All right here in our own backyard! Here is the link:

December 31, 2012--Market overview

Happy New Year! For the start of the new year, it is a good time to review the old. 2012 was an interesting year in real estate. The year began unceremoniously, the market sleeping in the doldrums with low activity and modest demand. In early spring, the market woke up with a start. Interest rates dipped below 4% and buyers that had been waiting on the sidelines, decided that it was a good time to buy. Increasingly optimistic news on the economy motivated many that it was now time to buy, and the momentum gained quickly. Many buyers entered in, but the number of available homes did not increase, creating an undersupply of inventory. Few bank owned properties came on the market and short sale transactions were still encountering obstacles to a successful close of escrow that buyers found discouraging. The result was a lack of inventory and high demand. Those market conditions led to multiple offers resulting in sales over list price, and increasing values. This condition accelerated into the summer months and throughout the fall season. We are now seeing an appreciation of values in some markets, particularly in the lower price ranges. The upper ranges of value (over $1M) still struggle with higher inventory and lower demand, as interest rates are less of a inflential factor due to the lack of available jumbo financing. Winter is here and inventory is at a low in communities with predominant values under $1M: only 36 listings in Pacific Grove, and 24 in Monterey, while in the communities with predominant values over $1M the inventory is much higher: 86 homes in Carmel and 55 in Pebble Beach. As the year ends, we are looking to see how the current economic conditions will influence the year ahead, and whether we can look for this trend to continue. Stay tuned!

October 4, 2012 - Local Events

Come to Pacific Grove this weekend for the annual Historic Homes Tour on Sunday October 7. Here is the link for more info and tickets:


September 20, 2012 -- Local Events

Music lovers are congregating in Monterey this weekend. Beginning Friday, and running through the weekend, is the 55th Annual Monterey Jazz Festival, the world's longest running Jazz Festival. This is a very popular event and attracts many jazz fans from around the country. See here for more info:



September 19, 2012 -- Pacific Grove

The most southern part of Pacific Grove is called the Del Monte Park area. This area, as well as the adjacent neighborhood of Forest Hill, are situated along the Pebble Beach boundaries to the west and the Monterey boundaries to the east.

The area is a mix of commercial, apartments and single family homes. The price are perfect for entry level buyers, starting in the low $200Ks to around $700Ks. There are a few new homes in a higher price range, and some homes in the Forest Hill area have ocean views. Here is my listing in the area:


September 10, 2012-- Pacific Grove

On the other side of Forest Ave across from Candy Cane Lane is the Spazier Subdivision and Hillcrest Neighborhoods. Values are similar to Candy Cane Lane , though examples of Spanish Colonial Revival Architecture are more prevalent. Here is my new listing on Spazier Ave.


August 17, 2012-- Pacific Grove

From Central Pacific Grove, moving up the hill, is the "Candy Cane Lane" neighborhood, bounded by Hillcrest Ave on the south and David Ave to the north, east of Forest Ave. Since this area was developed later, mostly in the 1940's/1950's, the lot sizes are larger, mostly in the 6000-7000sf range. The larger lot sizes bring larger home sizes, some over 2000sf. Many families enjoy this area with the larger home sizes, close proximity to all the local schools, and of course the festive holiday displays seen in the neighborhood during the Halloween and Christmas seasons. Hence the name "Candy Cane Lane".


August 13, 2012 -- Local Events

This week is one of the Peninsula's largest events--The Concours d'Elegance in Pebble Beach. It is the finale of a weeklong festival of classic cars including the Concorso Italiano, the Monterey Historic Automobile Races at Laguna Seca and the Gooding classic car auction. The yearly event starts Wed Aug 15 and runs through Sunday with the judging on the 18th fairway of the Pebble Beach Golf Links. Certainly not to be missed! Here is the link to the events:


August 7, 2012 -- Pacific Grove

One border of Central Pacific Grove is Washington Park, well known to dog lovers as a great place to let the dogs explore the wooded area off the leash. Central PG also hosts the Community Center, a neighborhood treasure with a play park for kids and recently refurbished tennis courts. Both elementary schools are located in this area, plus the high school and middle school. The home values range from $300K for a small fixer upper to $1.2+ for a large remodeled home. There a few apartments and duplexes sprinkled throughout the area. Market activity is presently strong, the schools are well recognized and this is a target neighborhood for families. Average days on market for listings in this area are running about 30 days.



July 27, 2012-- Pacific Grove


The next neighborhood on our tour is the Central Pacific Grove area.  Located between  Pine Ave and Sinex Ave, this area hosts a wide variety of styles of homes, representative of the periods from the 1920’s to the 1950’s when this area was primarily developed. Some of the unique styles for which Pacific Grove is well known are Craftsman style homes, Mediterranean  bungalows, English style cottages and Victorian eclectic styles.  These charming homes are inviting to see and pleasant way to spend an afternoon strolling among the streets.  The interior of many of these homes, and homes in the adjoining Retreat Area can be viewed during the annual Pacific Grove Historic Home tour held in October.


July 25, 2012--Pacific Grove events

This week is the annual Feast of Lanterns event. Started in 1905 as part of the Chautauqua Assembly, the event has grown to cover several days of activities, including an art show, feast of salads, pet parade, and boat parade featuring the Royal Court. Find out more about this popular local event:

July 10,2012-- Pacific Grove

Ever hear of the Asilomar ghost? Reportedly the ghost has appeared in the chapel at Asilomar on the conference grounds. Hear this story and others in tours given by the State Parks Dept. The guide will share stories and information about the architecture of Asilomar, with tours of the buildings and the grounds. Other tours are available including boardwalk/sea life tours and dunes/ecosystem tours. Here is the link for more info:

July 8, 2012--Pacific Grove

The Asilomar neighborhood in Pacific Grove was named in recognition of the Asilomar Conference Center located in this area, among the dunes of the Asilomar State Beach. Constructed in 1913 (originally built for the YWCA as a leadership camp), the architect Julia Morgan designed and built 16 of the structures, 13 of which are still standing. Considered the largest collection of Arts and Craft's style architecture in one location, their designs typifies the Arts and Crafts movement with an emphasis on the use of local, natural materials and quality workmanship designed in harmony with the environment. For more information on Asilomar's architecture see


Monterey is sponsoring it's first ever 4th of July laser light show event this evening, the result of a public-private partnership sponsored by the Monterey Bay Symphony. With tightening city budgets, the firework shows are no longer seen in the city on the 4th and the trend toward laser light shows as an alternative has now found it's way to Monterey. This patriotic concert will be choreographed with a laser light show and is bound to fill up fast with only 3000 seats. It is recommended to get there early, the gates open at 6pm for picnicing, with the concert beginning at 8pm. I have been to laser shows coupled with symphony music in other cities and they are really something to experience!



 June 30, 2012 -- Pacific Grove

Pre- Rec Trail Lovers Point, 1974. Yes, those are really train tracks!


June 29, 2012 -- Pacific Grove

Here is the link to some more information on the Del Monte Express + photos:

Del Monte Express

Del Monte Express 2  


June 18, 2012 -- Pacific Grove

Here is a new listing in the area, a 3 bed, 2.5 bath, 1890sf home across from Washington Park...$819,000. And an update: our new listing at 955 Crest for $649,000 in the Beach Tract went into escrow in one day! Market activity is very strong in that area!


June 14, 2012-- Pacific Grove

Did you know that Pacific Grove has the highest number of historic homes per capita in the country? (yes country!) And a great many of these homes are in the Pacific Grove Retreat area, the first area developed in the city in the 1880's.  Many of these homes have been lovingly restored and still exist on the original "tent sites". The retreat area borders the Monterey Bay just north of the downtown area, around Lover's Point. Home values are relatively modest compared with other nearby beach communities. Small one bedroom homes start around $400K (need restoration) to $1M for larger, remodeled homes. This home is one of our recent sales in the neighborhood. 

June 9, 2012--Local Events

Relatively unknown, even among locals, is the summers series "Films in the Forest". Each week during the summer on Tuesday nights, the Outdoor Forest theatre in Carmel shows a movie in the their outdoor amphitheatre. Bring a picnic dinner and enjoy a movie among the stars, the pines trees, with a roaring fire to warm you! Last week Wells Fargo Home Mortgage hosted "play Misty for Me". It was great to see that classic again with all the Carmel settings! Tonight "Hugo" is being shown at sunset.

June 7, 2012-- Pacific Grove

The Pacific Grove "Beach Tract" (also known as Fairway homes) is the first area we'll visit in the Pacific Grove tour and is typically where home buyers start their home search. The Beach Tract is west of downtown Pacific Grove and east and north of Pebble Beach. The area was developed in the late 1940's s larger than in the nearby Lover's Point area, home buyers who have been looking in Carmel and are discouraged by the prices, often find their home in the Beach Tract. Prices range from the $600Ks and up. Homes along the bay are $1M+. Here is our recent sale on Shell Ave in the Beach Tract for $1,150,000.

June 6, 2012-- Pacific Grove

Per Wikipedia: In November 1879, after the summer campers returned home, Robert Louis Stevenson wandered into the deserted campgrounds: "I have never been in any place so stinky. Indeed, it was not so much like a deserted town as like a scene upon the stage by daylight, and with no one having any fun." Ha, wonder what he would stay now?-- That house is how much?!!

June 5, 2012-- Pacific Grove

First a little history about Pacific Grove (locals--please humor me!) Referred to as "The Last Hometown" Pacific Grove was originally founded in the 1870's as a Methodist summer retreat area for visitors to enjoy the fresh air and fragrant pines. In the beginning, the visitors put up tents on small plots of land, which would later become known as "tent sites". These tents sites are located in the Lover's Point area and are typically 30 x 60 ft lots. Later, in the 1880s, small summer homes were built on these "tent sites". Some of the original tent houses still exist, and recently one was found to have the original tent still in the attic!

Market comments and community information and events--Archive

 June 1, 2012-- Pebble Beach

Once again, as we enter the last neighborhood in our Pebble Beach tour, the Upper Forest area, low inventory reigns, with only 4 homes listed for sale, and one in escrow. There have been 9 sales of single family homes in the past 6 months, 7 of these sales have been under $1M, from $475K to $909K. The Upper Forest area runs along the upper end of Pebble Beach, from Hwy 1 along Hwy 68. Several of these sales were bank owned properties. As in many other areas on the Peninsula, the bank owned listings are few and far between (see my website for current bank owned properties). None of the listings available are bank owned and the list prices start at $685K.

May 31, 2012-- Local Events

Enjoy the Merienda this Saturday in Monterey:
The Merienda, Monterey’s birthday party, is a colorful fiesta of delicious foods, red wine, gallant dons, lovely senoritas, lively music and festive dance. Traditionally held in the Memory Garden in the patio of the Old Pacific House, a State Historical Monument, it is the gem of the Monterey History and Art Association’s annual celebrations.

May 29, 2012-- Pebble Beach

When out-of-towners think of Pebble Beach, the area that comes to mind is the "estate area" of Pebble Beach. In this area, around and above the Pebble Beach Lodge, you will find many large custom estates, often on acreage. (also, this considered one of the sunnier areas in Pebble Beach with less fog). Homes range up to the 10M+ range many with golf and ocean views. The majority of sales in the past year have been in the under $5M range, with 9 sales under $2M, 5 sales under $3M, 4 sales under $4M, 2 sales under $5M. As you see, the higher the price the less activity there is. 

May 25, 2012-- Pebble Beach

The Monterey Peninsula Country Club area in Pebble Beach surrounds the Country Club, known locally as MPCC, opened since 1926. The homes in the MPCC were primarily constructed in the 1950's and 1960's, with some older homes sprinkled throughout the area. Many of these homes have since been extensively remodeled and would be considered in nearly new condition. Ranch style and traditional two-story style homes predominate, most are on 1/4 acre sites. Prices start mostly around $700K (there are a few exceptions) and run to $2M+. Market activity, as in other markets, has been very strong under $1M.
Here is more info about MPCC:

May 22, 2012--General

Activity in the real estate market remains very heavy in the lower prices ranges this month. Carmel-by-the-Sea has only 10 active listings under $1M, Pebble Beach has 12 properties under $1M (out of 83). The upper end of the market is showing less activity, of the 15 properties in escrow in Pebble Beach, 9 are under $1M, 6 are over, the highest is $5.2M. This week the neighborhood walk will enter Pebble Beach where some of the most beautiful and lavish estate properties on the Monterey Peninsula are found.

May 19, 2012--Events

It's not too late to catch the events at the Monterey Bay Aquarium's "Cooking For Solutions". What a great event for the Aquarium!

May 18, 2012--Events

There is a great event starting today through the weekend: the Carmel Art Festival. Live music and great art..what more can you ask for? Here is the schedule...

May 17, 2012-- Carmel

Carmel also refers to other areas that are not within the Carmel-by-the-Sea city limits. These neighborhoods are under county jurisdiction and reach south toward Big Sur and east toward Carmel Valley. Some of these neighborhoods include Carmel Knolls, Carmel Hills, High Meadow, Carmel Views, Quail Meadows and the Preserve, and Yankee Point and Otter Cove to the south along the coast. These areas vary widely in composition, from single family estate homes to townhouses and vary in price as well. Please message me if you are interested in any info on these areas.

May 16, 2012-- Carmel

An area little known outside the Monterey Peninsula is Hatton Fields, on the eastern and southern border of Carmel-by-the-Sea backing to Highway 1. Known as the "estate area of Carmel" many are custom built homes on large parcels, often acreage. Here you will find the largest homes on the ocean side of Highway 1 in Carmel, many are over 3000sf on private gated lots. The properties on the southern end of this neighborhood are smaller and are more affordable, with prices ranging from $500K-$1M. As you move north the lot and homes sizes (as well as prices) increase into the $2M+ range. 

May 15, 2012-- Carmel

Moving south and east of Carmel-by-the-Sea is the Mission Fields neighborhood. This neighborhood consists primarily of single family homes built in the 1950's. The prices are currently in the $500Ks, with just one active listing at $539,900. There have been 6 sales since the beginning of 2012. 

May 11, 2012-- Carmel

Another gem around the Carmel Mission is Mission Ranch, Clint Eastwood's resort--lodging, restaurant and tennis. It is well known by local's for it's "piano bar".

May 10, 2012-- Carmel

The area around the Carmel Mission is another neighborhood south of Carmel-by-the-Sea. Also located in this area is the Carmel River Elementary School. The River school is one of the top rate public schools in the county, currently state ranked 10 out of 10.

May 6, 2012--Events

Today is the Robinson Jeffers Tor House Spring Garden Party at the Tor House on Ocean View in Carmel. 2-5pm. See you there!

May 1, 2012-- Carmel

Carmel Point is another Carmel neighborhood, south of the Carmel-by-the-Sea city limits, bordering the Pacific Ocean. Here you will find the most enchanting and impressing "cottages", (and some of the priciest). Referred to by the local as "the Point", values range from around $1M to upwards of $7+M.

April 21, 2012-- Carmel

If SE Carmel sounds like the place for you, many newcomers to the area can find cottages starting at $500K. Larger homes that have been remodeled can go to $2M+.

April 12, 2012--Events

Pacific Grove has a fabulous event this weekend, the 55th Annual Good Old Days Festival. In addition to being Monterey County's largest craft fair, there is a parade, carnival rides and a quilt show (it's worth going for the quilt show alone, you will not believe these quilts, they are works of art!). Loads of music to enjoy, don't miss the Pacific Grove High School orchestra, they are fantastic! Just what the "Last Hometown" is all about! Saturday and Sunday April 14-15.
Here's the link...

April 10, 2012--Events

Lots of great events this weekend! The 5th annual Pebble Beach food and Wine event begins on April 12-15 and features 50 celebrity chefs and 200 wineries including Jacques Pepin and Daniel Boulud. Certainly a "don't miss" event! Here's the link...

April 9, 2012-- Carmel

We will start our neighborhood walk in Carmel, starting with Carmel-by-the-Sea. As an overview, though most visitors consider Carmel-by-the-Sea the only Carmel, Carmel in fact covers a much larger area, bordering Pebble Beach on the north in Carmel Woods, reaching out to Carmel Valley in the east and down the coast to the south. Carmel-by-the-Sea, considered a "city in the forest", is unofficially sectioned into 4 neighborhoods, (NW, SW, SE, NE) with Ocean Ave, the main shopping district through it's center and San Carlos St dividing west and east. Each quarter has it's own nuances, which we will explore in upcoming posts. The city consists of 1.1 miles and 1 mile of beautiful white sand beach. Everything from a quaint historic cottage to a large custom Tuscan villa can be found throughout Carmel-by-the-Sea, interspersed with majestic Monterey Cypress trees and beautiful gardens. Tomorrow we visit the northeast quarter of Carmel-by-the-Sea.
Please visit the city website link here for more information and an events calender, including the upcoming Bach Festival.

April 8, 2012

Today begins the tour of the Monterey Peninsula cities, called "Walk through the Neighborhoods". We will journey through Carmel, Pebble Beach, Pacific Grove and Monterey through the different neighborhoods and their nuances. I hope this will help newcomers to get to know a little bit about each neighborhood and friends and residents maybe a little local tidbit that is new! I hope you enjoy! I welcome any additional information you have to share, just message me!


           Laurel Jaques~The Jones Group~216 17th Street~ Pacific Grove, CA~(831) 915-1185