I am a full-time, second generation, award-winning & enthusiastic Los Gatos real estate agent, serving this town and the county too – a Silicon Valley Realtor. Real estate was my second career after I’d worked happily in the area of religious education (in Catholic high schools) & ministry for several years. Economics necessitated an employment change, and real estate was a natural fit as it really is a “helping profession” and I’d grown up with it. I like to joke that my first words were “raised foundation”.
An area native, I was raised in Santa Clara and Saratoga, graduating from Saratoga High in 1977. As an adult I lived in several parts of the valley, including 10 years in Cambrian Park, and since 1999, in Los Gatos. Over the years I’ve also spent extensive time in Campbell, Almaden, and many parts of the West Valley.
I hold a Bachelor of Arts from Gonzaga University in Spokane (a Catholic university run by Jesuits – in Religious Studies, 1981) and thanks to my parents’ generosity, was able to enjoy a fabulous Junior year abroad at Gonzaga-in-Florence, Italy (1979-1980), which cemented my love of travel and all things Italian. (With some refreshing, I can still manage a simple conversation in Italian – which is fun!) After some teaching, I earned a Master of Arts (in Systematic Theology, 1986) from The Graduate Theological Union/Jesuit School of Theology at Berkeley.
Afterwards I returned to teaching religion in Catholic high schools, a very rewarding career, for a few years, until our children came onto the scene. I did a lot of related volunteer work too, with my favorite being as a volunteer chaplain at Good Samaritan Hospital in the early 90’s. Additionally, I worked in the Rainbows Program at our parish, St. Mary of the Immaculate Conception in Los Gatos. Rainbows is a peer-to-peer ministry/support group for kids suffering from any major loss, such as the death of a parent or divorce.
Sereno Group, Los Gatos
Serving Santa Clara County: Los Gatos, Monte Sereno, Saratoga, Campbell, and San Jose (Almaden Valley, Cambrian Park, Willow Glen) and nearby
California Department of Real Estate license # 01153805
Hobbies include enjoying walks in the neighborhood, Belgatos Park, and throughout the San Francisco Bay area – usually with camera in hand and blogging ideas being created! I love to write, hence the huge number of blogs, and wonder if someday I might write a novel. Photography, live music, and travel are all top hobbies too. I often enjoy the Almaden Music in the Park or any of the Los Gatos musical events. In 2016, I was over the moon to hear Andrea Bocelli perform at the SAP center in San Jose.
Please join us for the Almaden Music in the Park series every Thursday in July! Correct hours are 6:30pm to 8pm. Last week was the first one, and it was so much fun! A few other Realtors at Sereno Group and I are sponsoring the event. At our table, under the green awning, we give away water bottles and red vines. Please stop by and say hello! (And if you are one of my blog readers, I really would love to meet you, too!)
Please stop by a Sereno Group office in Los Gatos, Los Altos or Soquel / Santa Cruz to take part in a FREE e-waste, e-recycling
collection event on Sunday April 21, 2013 9:30AM- 1:30- PM.
A FREE e-waste collection event is being held in 3 area Sereno Group offices on Sunday, April 21, 2013 from 9:30am to 1:30pm:
Where to go to drop off the approved items?
214 Los Gatos-Saratoga Rd.
Los Gatos 408-335-1400
Los Altos/Palo Alto
369 S. San Antonio Rd.
Los Altos 650-947-2900
2407 Porter St. #150
What to Bring, what’s accepted:
CDs & DVDs
Please note that in the past, they didn’t want to take small kitchen appliances but seems that this year, they’re ok!
Service provided by Metech Recycling who will securely shred all data containing devices, so no one can access your personal information. Over 95% of all materials will be securely recycled for manufacture.
$2,275,000 : 5350 Arboretum DR, LOS ALTOS3 beds, 1 full, 1 half baths
$2,689,000 : 22805 Aspen DR, LOS ALTOS4 beds, 3 full baths
$2,800,000 : 550 San Felicia WAY, LOS ALTOS3 beds, 2 full, 1 half baths
$3,599,000 : 23281 Partridge LN, LOS ALTOS4 beds, 3 full baths
$2,499,000 : 694 Camellia WAY, LOS ALTOS3 beds, 2 full baths
$2,295,000 : 1216 Golden WAY, LOS ALTOS4 beds, 2 full baths
$2,250,000 : 1050 Alegre AVE, LOS ALTOS3 beds, 2 full baths
$4,000,000 : 903 Loyola DR, LOS ALTOS5 beds, 4 full, 1 half baths
$2,250,000 : 511 Orange AVE, LOS ALTOS3 beds, 2 full baths
$2,357,000 : 1683 Parkhills AVE, LOS ALTOS4 beds, 3 full baths
See all Real estate and homes in city of Los Altos.
(all data current as of 7/31/2016)
Listing information deemed reliable but not guaranteed. Read full disclaimer.
People’s Choice: Real Estate’s Most Influential – Inman News – Please vote! Mary Pope-Handy nominated!
Each year, Inman News sponsors a “people’s choice” voting for the most influential person in real estate. Inman nominates 100 strong candidates but voters may also write in someone not listed. This week, I was very deeply honored to have been included on such a prestigious list of real estate leaders nationwide, and I’d be thrilled if you would consider voting for me.
Where to vote: follow this link and the fields for entering your desired winner’s name and info will be about 20% of the way down (midway through the article and just after a large ad) – deadline is Dec 1, 2011:
Halloween is almost here and it is time to get creative! Sereno’s in on the spirit too. Each year, Sereno Group Real Estate offices in the San Jose and Silicon Valley area have a Halloween pumpkin decorating contest for kids. Winner’s pumpkins (and names of winners if parental permission is received) will be advertised in our local papers after the contest is finished.
Decorate your own small pumpkin, or pick up a complimentary pumpkin at one of our offices in Los Gatos, Saratoga, Soquel/Santa Cruz, Los Altos, or Palo Alto.
3 age groups: toddler, early elementary, late elementary
All contestants will receive a gift goodie bag
One grand prize per age group, per office, will be awarded
Any carved or punctured pumpkins will be disqualified due to rotting
All entries must be dropped off at your nearest Sereno Group Office by Friday, October 21st at 5pm. Judging will happen the week of October 24th during our regular real estate marketing meeting.
Where and when can you drop off a pumpkin? Please find the office locations and hours below. We are looking forward to seeing some wonderful kids’ creations!
The “Top Places to Work in the Bay Area 2010” has named Sereno Group as #1 for companies of its size (they ranked companies by small, medium and large sizes – 60 firms are named in all) . With about 130 people on staff and working as real estate agents, Sereno Group is considered a small size company. We are very proud to be listed as top in our group! We are also proud to be the only residential real estate brokerage on any of the three lists. Congratulations to all the winners!
The “Top Places to Work” list comes as a result of an annual survey done by the Bay Area News Group (community papers).
Several people, companies, and systems assist me in my work with buyers and sellers in Silicon Valley. Most often, my clients will not see or speak with many of them much (if at all), but they are all part of the package, if on the “back end” much of the time.
My daughter, Clair, assists me about half time. She is unlicensed and does not usually interact with my clients. Most of her work is computer related or errands-running: tagging disclosures for electronic signing, duplicating keys, dropping fliers off to listings, research for my blog posts, help with the monthly newsletter, and driving me while I videotape neighborhoods are some of her tasks.
Within My Brokerage:
At my brokerage, Sereno Group in Los Gatos, my escrow coordinator, Sonia Sisto, makes sure that the paperwork is complete. With a myriad of places to sign and initial and papers not to forget, it’s helpful to have a second set of eyes on the file. Additionally, other agents also review the file on behalf of Sereno management. When there are legal questions, which can come up from time to time, we have a legal counsel available through Ryan Iwanaga, my manager, or Chris Trapani, the CEO of Sereno Group, and we get answers back within a business day, if not a few hours. Finally, there are several agents who assist me in some cases (vacation, sickness, family emergencies). So I’m well supported on the office or firm level. When you hire me, you get a full staff behind me.
Whether buying or selling a silicon valley home or investment property, good inspections are critical. I don’t have one list for buyers and another for sellers – no matter which end of the transaction you’re on, you want excellent information. Surprises tend to sour escrows, so part of the plan in helping you avoid trouble is to avoid surprises. Only with excellent information can you make good decisions and have more control of the way your real estate sale progresses.
1. Home or Property Inspectors. It is crucial that your property inspector be exceedingly well trained, experienced, careful, clear, and through. In California, there is no license for home inspectors. However, there are a couple of trade groups which have a very high standard of practice. One is ASHI (American Society of Home Inspectors) and the other is CREIA (California Real Estate Inspection Association).
There are many good home inspectors in the San Jose area, but my #1 choice is Duane Serrano of Tri Star Home Inspections. Duane is an ASHI member with 15 years experience. I have not found him to either miss or over call issues (I have sometimes had inspectors who say a chimney or roof is bad, have the clients hire more experts, only to find out that it was fine – that aggressive over-calling is expensive, time consuming and upsetting). Duane also provides my clients with suggestions as to solutions and how to make the home last longer with proper care. He gets the reports out, with digital photos, on a same-day basis. Duane’s website is http://www.tristarinspections.com/ or he can be reached by phone at 408 266-2706.