Welcome to Episode 207 of HGTV's Selling LA. Each Thursday night we join local brokers and their clients as they try to sell or buy high-end properties in a tough but possibly recovering market. This week we're following Brian and Erica Reams and Valerie Fitzgerald. Let's begin.
This episode we begin with brother and sister Brian and Erica Reams of Hilton & Hyland. The handsome duo are off to meet their client, couture designer Lloyd Klein. Mr. Klein is busily working in his shop, spinning fabric around a smile-impaired model. While pinning, stitching, and waving his arms about, he explains that he is looking for a home that will give him enough space for his design work while giving him the privacy required by his celebrity clientele. His other requirements for the home: it needs to be magical, near the Sunset Strip, and in a gated community. All he's missing is a requirement that the home be draped in chiffon and placed on marshmallow clouds. He wants this magical abode for a tidy sum of $10 million. We can smell failure all over this plot line.
Brian and Erica whisk Lloyd away for a private showing of a house located at 1535 Umeo Road in the Pacific Palisades. The home is being listed at $9.999 million and features 7,300 sq. ft., six bedrooms, and nine baths. It also includes an artist's studio, which Brian and Erica point out could become Lloyd's work space away from his office. Unfortunately, Lloyd wants everything to be more open--and brighter. He wants big spaces all over the house. Lloyd tells the camera that he is upset that they brought him to a house that didn't include everything he wanted. Brian and Erica take the disappointment as a positive step toward learning what features Lloyd actually wants, since his must-haves seem to be all over the place.
Brian and Erica next bring Lloyd to a house in the Bel Air Crest neighborhood. The house located at 11790 Southampton Court is listed for $11.4 million, and features 9,000 sq. ft., five bedrooms, six and one-half baths, and lots of light. Lloyd seems to like the house a lot. He notes that it reminds him of the south of France--the Nice part, not the Marseille part, presumably. Although Lloyd likes the house, he doesn't love it. He tells Brian and Erica that he wants to see something more modern...but in the interim, while waiting to see a modern house, he wants to put in an offer on this house. Brian and Erica laugh at crazypants Lloyd, and rightly so.
Hoping to hit the "just right" porridge, they bring Lloyd to a third house. Lloyd comments that he is in a bad mood and can't be bothered with a bad house, so they better get this one right. We imagine Lloyd is having fanciful visions of viciously slapping Brian and Erica across their pretty faces should the house not be exactly what he wants. The house is what you would expect for a "modern house"--straight lines, white walls, metallic accents, and symmetrical placement of fixtures and furniture. The house has the open feel that Lloyd requested, and it is very bright. However, it is a longer drive for Lloyd, which he worries about. What?! There's no funicular from the house to Lloyd's office!? The funicular-less house located at 11496 Orum Road is listed at $6.895 million (within Lloyd's price range), and features 5,826 sq. ft., four bedrooms, and four and one-half baths. Lloyd tepidly loves it, like an ugly puppy. In order to allay his concerns, Brian suggests that Lloyd have his driver take him from the house to his office to give him an idea of the time it will take to drive.
Finally, Brian and Erica meet with Lloyd for lunch to discuss the houses they saw together and to get his feedback. They hope he will get over his reservations, and make a decision. Unfortunately, Lloyd tells them that he has decided to put the househunt on hold until his fashion line is complete. They look crestfallen. Pretty, but crestfallen. Lloyd assures them that he's still interested and they did an amazing job, but he can't buy now. The postscript notes that Lloyd is still working on his stupid fashion collection, so there is no sale for Brian and Erica.
In the second storyline of the episode, Valerie Fitzgerald of the Valerie Fitzgerald Group meets potential clients David Doyle and Alan Shafer, the president and COO, respectively of Luxe List Home, at their home in the Doheny Hills. They are planning to list the 6,000 sq. ft. home, located at 1354 North Doheny Dr., and are currently interviewing agents to find the most amazing one...so they can impress all of their friends or something. Who knows. The duo take Valerie for a tour of their home and Valerie goes spastic over the wood paneled ceiling and open floorplan. The home also includes a wine cellar tucked away behind a bookcase and down a flight of spooky stairs. The house features five bedrooms and seven and one-half baths, a lovely pool and spa. As Lloyd would say, it's magical.
Following the tour, Valerie sits down with the couple and suggests that the house be listed at $7 million. Alan and David take a moment to think about the economic plight of the 99 percent, and suggest what they consider a more realistic, economically sensitive list price of $6.8 million. Valerie comments that it is a special occassion when the seller suggests a lower listing price than she does. It really is the end times. Despite all the positive moments they shared, David tells Valerie that they are still interviewing agents so they will get back to her.
Later, the boys and Valerie go out to dinner where Valerie continues her dog and pony show to get the listing. While showing off glossy brochures, Valerie suggests that they hold an exclusive evening event, with wines and cheeses and a sommelier. She hopes the event will attract the high-end buyers and brokers that they need to move the house. It all sounds very fancy. Finally, after toying with her emotions, David and Alan reward Valerie for all her hard planning by giving her the listing.
Following a trip to Wally's to taste test wines, Valerie holds the open house. The episode wraps up rather quickly with open house attendees eating cheese and drinking wine and talking about how much they love the house and the secret spooky stairs to the wine cellar/dungeon. The postscript notes that they received two offers and Valerie negotiated a deal for $5.65 million. That sounds like a sale to us.
· Selling LA Archives [Curbed LA]