Blog News March 31, 2015

LA’s Top 3 Sushi Restaurants

Sushi on a white plateThe Best Local Places For This Japanese Cuisine

One of the best parts of living in or near Los Angeles is our access to some of the finest dining not only in the country, but also in the world. Our plethora of restaurant options is further bolstered by our proximity to the sea, giving us access to the best, freshest seafood. So you can fully take advantage of all the area has to offer, do not miss the top three local sushi restaurants, according to LA Weekly.

  1. Urusawa: Urusawa promises an experience as delightful and luxurious as the plates it serves. Offering only the freshest, most beautiful (and often most rare) specialties, Hiro Urusawa learned his art from Masa Takayama, generally known to be the best sushi chef in the United States. While Takayama has left for the East Coast, Urusawa stays local to wow us with his sushi and his restaurant. 218 N. Rodeo Drive, Beverly Hills • (310) 247-8939
  2. Kiriko Sushi: Ken Namba, Kiriko’s chef, has mastered the traditional art of sushi while giving it his own personal touch. Namba prepares for the entire restaurant yet manages to do it all with an air of calm that is contagious. Step into the mahogany sushi bar to experience a meal, and an evening, you will not soon forget. 11301 W. Olympic Boulevard, Los Angeles • (310) 478-7769
  3. Mori Sushi: Since so much of sushi’s flavor needs to be delicately drawn out by the best chefs, when Morihiro Onodera retired from Mori a year ago many expected his assistant chef to deliver a lower quality product. Fortunately, Mori and its meticulous in-house creation of everything from green tea ice cream to soy sauce to flatware have been perfectly maintained. 1500 W. Pico Boulevard, Los Angeles • (310) 479-3939

Do you have a real estate agent who is guiding you towards the best luxury real estate close to the finest restaurants in Los Angeles and Conejo Valley? For your guide to the best sushi and best homes in Southern California, contact Betsy Dittman today. I look forward to helping you find your dream home in 2015.

Blog News March 27, 2015

Home Renovations: The Best (And Worst) Bang For Your Buck

project of construction and renovation houseUse This Guide To Decide Which Renovations Are Best

When it comes to remodeling your home, putting money in does not necessarily mean getting money out. Consequently, it is important to discern which home renovation projects will yield a strong return on investment, and which you should skip. To help, here are a few of the best ideas and a few to avoid in 2015.

  • Invest: Roof ReplacementThe single best improvement you can undertake is ripping out your existing roof to lay down new shingles and flashing with galvanized drip edges and trim. Costing around $7,500, this project yields the most significant cost-to-value ratio.
  • Avoid: Home Office- If you have been thinking of turning a room in your home into an office, skip it. Buyers will not want to have to tear out all the shelving you put in to switch it back to the bedroom they need.
  • Invest: Garage Door- A stylish garage door can make a huge impact on the aesthetic of your home. Usually costing just $1,150, this improvement can dramatically change the way your home looks.
  • Avoid: Adding Another Story- In 2014, the cost-to-value ratio of putting a second story dropped by a notable 11 percent. Since adding another story is such a big expense, it is not worth the investment.
  • Invest: Vinyl Siding- Although this renovation is a fairly major undertaking and costs between $5,600 and $8,000, it is well worth it because it dramatically revolutionizes the entire look of your home.

Are you thinking of taking on an improvement project to make it easier to sell your Los Angeles, Beverly Hills, or Conejo Valley home? To have an expert come alongside you and advise you on which are best, contact Betsy Dittman today. I am here to be your guide to the local luxury real estate market.

Blog News February 27, 2015

The New LA Restaurants You Should Hit

MargaritaRestaurant Openings In LA

LA offers some of the best food in the country, but to know you are truly getting the most from your meals you have to keep a finger on the pulse of the local restaurant scene. As restaurateurs and hipsters alike flock to Los Angeles to offer delicious plates served in oh-so-chic scenes, you know that 2015 will bring great new eateries to the area. To get you started on your journey to discovering your new favorite spot, check out these new bars and restaurants.

  • Sweeney’s Ale House: It’s about time the West Valley got its own gastropub, and the team behind Surly Goat is delivering just that. This Encino beer hall offers happy hour seven days a week, so don’t miss its notable menu of craft brews and tasty burgers.
  • SpreadPB: Who doesn’t love being able to customize their meals? À la the frozen yogurt shops that offer endless options for satisfying your unique palate, SpreadPB lets you take the blasé PB&J and spice it up with the trendiest, most delicious options locally available.
  • aestus: If you are looking for a great beachside restaurant without the usual ho-hum beachside menu, this is a can’t-miss spot. The upscale location serves trending produce and healthy protein options like grass-fed beef and grilled octopus.

Looking for a home is so much more than just looking for the house itself. You know that neighborhood is important. To get a guide to California luxury real estate properties who can guide you on the best, most happening areas, contact Betsy Dittman today. Serving the Conejo Valley, Beverly Hills, and Los Angeles, I am here to ensure your luxury real estate needs are always met. You deserve to find your dream home in your ideal location this year, so call me today.

Blog News February 20, 2015

Three Apps For Your DIY Projects

Smartphone with appsUse These Apps For Your Next Home Improvement Project

If you are working on your home, it can be easy to become overwhelmed. Because the improvements have to be conducted in your home, you never get to leave the work behind for longer than a night on the town. Fortunately, as technology has advanced there are smartphone apps that can make your DIY projects easier. To help you get the most from your home improvement project, check out these apps.

  • RoomScan: As you try to re-envision your home with updated furniture and décor, it is helpful to have the floor plan drawn out. Unfortunately, if your room is not a simple square drawing out the shape in the right proportion can be a challenge. RoomScan can quickly and accurately sketch out any floor plan for you, and the only thing you need to do is tap your phone to each wall of the room.
  • Houzz: CNN did not deem Houzz the “Wikipedia of interior and exterior design” for nothing. This app is filled with examples of great design and décor, and you can even search by specific paint colors to have a better understanding of how each hue will look in the room.
  • SnapShop: You know heading to that ritzy boutique would likely result in you finding your dream piece, but could also lead to you busting your budget. This handy app allows you to snap a picture of the item you love, enter a small amount of information, and then offers you similar options at different price points from hundreds of retailers.

Are you looking for a luxury real estate expert to help you visualize your dream home for 2015? If so, contact Betsy Dittman today. I serve Beverly Hills, Conejo Valley, and Los Angeles and am here to be your guide to California luxury real estate properties. You deserve to work with a dedicated, educated agent so call me today.

Blog News February 13, 2015

The Benefits Of A Design-Build Firm

Relaxing GardenHow One Company Can Meet Your Landscaping Needs

After you get into your dream home, it is time to create your dream landscape. You would not want your new property to be left lackluster, so it is important to get a team on board that you can trust to ensure the work you have done is of superior quality. If you want to leave bringing your landscaping dreams to life to a trusted company, you should consider hiring a design-build firm. These companies will be able to handle your landscaping needs from start to finish. Here are a few pros of hiring a design-build firm.

  • Simplicity: Rather than having to seek out two different companies—one to design your landscape and another to build it—you can hire just one to handle your needs from start to finish.
  • Expectations: Because a design-build firm is fully acquainted with the work that needs to go in to bringing an idea from the drafting table to your property, they will only offer you designs on which they can actually execute. You can rest easy knowing your expectations will be fully met by working with a design-build firm.
  • Budgeting: A design-build firm offers the benefit of having your design and execution costs combined into one price. They will also be aware of what materials are available, in which seasons, at which prices, so that their budgeting will be accurate.

If you have not yet found your dream home, do not wait to contact Betsy Dittman today. Why should you hesitate before getting into the luxury real estate you deserve in 2015? Serving Los Angeles, Beverly Hills, and Conejo Valley, I will help you find the right California luxury real estate properties to bring your home buying dreams to life.

Blog News February 9, 2015

Valentine’s Day In Los Angeles

Retro Valentines card with abstract heartsDon’t Miss These Restaurant Openings

Not that you should ever consume a boring meal, but Valentine’s Day is an especially important date to put emphasis on finding the ideal dining location. To help you find the perfect place to celebrate the day with your special someone, check out these restaurants offering notable Valentine’s Day menus.

  • Blue Plate Oysterette: With locations in Santa Monica and West Hollywood, getting to this “beachy chic” seafood restaurant is a snap. They will be serving up blackened steak with lobster tail and parsnip puree, lobster tagliatelle served in shellfish sauce with cherry tomatoes and arugula, and king crab legs with classic corn and French fries complemented by arugula salad for the holiday.
  • Church & StateFor a four-course prix-fixe menu sure to delight every palate, do not miss the special Valentine’s Day menu served at this Industrial Street eatery. Its holiday menu will include halibut, Maine lobster, butternut squash risotto, pate á choux, and more for $85 a person.
  • RockSugar Pan Asian Kitchen: For just $48 a head, you and your sweetheart can enjoy a shared appetizer, entrée each, shared side item, and two desserts. Options will include sweet-hot shrimp as the appetizer, spice-crusted Ahi tuna and black pepper New York strip for your main course, and caramelized banana custard cake to finish the night with something sweet.

Wouldn’t it be nice to work with a real estate agent who understands the local scene? You can, by contacting Betsy Dittman today. Serving Conejo Valley, Beverly Hills, and Los Angeles, I will be your guide to California luxury real estate properties so you can find your dream home this year. Do not get lost amidst the mélange of luxury real estate in Southern California; get the guidance you deserve by calling me today.

Blog News January 26, 2015

Why To Buy Before Spring

Real Estate Services

Maximize Your Savings By Buying Soon

Committing to purchasing a home is one of the biggest decisions most Americans will ever make, both financially and personally. It is not a decision that should be rushed. If, however, you have already reached the point where you are ready to switch from renter to homeowner, you should consider buying before spring. Here are a few reasons why:

  1. Costs Are Rising:If you waited to buy a home in 2014, you were no doubt surprised by the skyrocketing prices of homes. Although home appreciation should slow in 2015, it will continue to gradually rise. Mortgage interest rates are also expected to increase in the coming year. Buying a home is not going to be any more affordable than it is right now at any point in the foreseeable future.
  2. Your Living Expenses Are Not Decreasing:You may think that buying a home would wipe out your savings, but you might be surprised how similar a mortgage payment could be when compared to what you are already paying in rent. In fact, in some cases it may even be less. You need to put money towards your living expenses each month no matter what, so why not put that money into an investment rather than your landlord’s pocket?
  3. You Deserve A Stable Future:Experts predict rent prices will continue to rise in the next five years. With a fixed-rate mortgage, however, you lock in your monthly housing cost. Get the financial stability you deserve by fixing your living expenses now.

You deserve an agent who will help you get into the best home at the best price. To work with an expert on the local real estate market in Conejo Valley, San Fernando Valley, Santa Monica, Beverly Hills and Los Angeles, contact Betsy Dittman. I am here to make sure you get the luxury you deserve at the price you deserve in 2015. Call me today.


Blog News January 19, 2015

Get The Most From Your Square Footage

interno casa

How To Maximize The Space You Have In Your Home

If you have been feeling cramped in your home lately, you may feel your appreciation for your home diminishing. It can be challenging to live somewhere you do not feel you can spread out and decompress. Protect yourself against falling out of love with your home by using this checklist to get the most out of your square footage.

  • Implement A Juliet Balcony: If you are feeling cooped up in your home, opening up to the outdoors can go a long way towards making your space feel larger. Consider adding a Juliet balcony for a connection to the fresh air and extra light the outdoors has to offer without actually adding square footage to your home.
  • Minimize Cabinetry: If you have a small kitchen, nothing will make it feel cramped quite as quickly as adding heavy cabinetry above your counters. Let the room breath by opting for open shelving or—if you are not short on storage—windows.
  • Make Your Own Foyer: You do not need to have an expansive foyer to create space for shoes, jackets, keys, etc. to call home. Add a bench and even a half-height wall to define the space in front of your door as a small foyer. Make sure the changes you implement include ample space for storage, and you will happily find the front room of your house clutter-free, making it feel more spacious.

You deserve to see the best California luxury real estate properties before buying your next home. To connect with an agent who will ensure you see every premier property in Beverly Hills, Los Angeles, and Conejo Valley that could be a fit for you, contact Betsy Dittman today.  Betsy  is the real estate expert that will help you get into your dream home in 2015. Call her today.


Blog News December 24, 2014

Los Angeles’ Must-See Hotels


HotelFor A Week’s Getaway Or A Night Out, These Are The Places To Be in LA

Los Angeles is noted worldwide for its luxurious hotels. Conjuring up images of cocktails poolside and socializing at lavish bars, LA offers a multitude of hotels worth seeing. Curbed recently released its list of the essential hotels to visit in Los Angeles whether you are traveling in for a week or just planning on staying for an evening’s worth of drinks. Here are the top five places to visit the lap of luxury:

  1. Château Marmont: This 63 room and suite building was modeled after the French Château d’Amboise. Built in 1927, this hyper-luxurious establishment offers a world-class restaurant and glamorous bar scene.
  2. Beverly Hills Hotel: Over a century old, this hotel was named a historic landmark in 2012 and celebrated its centennial with updates to the rooms, lounge and lobby.
  3. The Westin Bonaventure Hotel & Suite: Looking for a new spin on dinner? Visit the hotels revolving BonaVista Lounge for cocktails, followed by great views and a delicious meal from LA Prime, located on the 35th floor.
  4. The Standard: To fulfill the common poolside-with-a-cocktail Southern California fantasy, check out The Standard’s famous rooftop lounge.
  5. Shutters On The Beach: Bringing East Coast vibes to the West Coast, this Santa Monica establishment is located only a block from the city’s famous pier.

For the inside scoop on Beverly Hills, Santa Monica, San Fernando Valley, and Conejo Valley, contact real estate agent Betsy Dittman. With past experience working with luxury brands Chanel and Giorgio Armani, I care deeply about offering you the highest-end service in the real estate industry. Contact me today for a deeper look at the luxuries Los Angeles County and beyond have to offer. I can find you your dream home.

Blog News December 17, 2014

Holiday Hosting Made Easy


ChecklistUse This Quick Checklist To Get Your Home Party-Ready

Between holiday shopping, baking, and events, hosting a party can be the straw that breaks the busy camel’s back. With a quick and easy cleaning checklist, getting your home ready for guests doesn’t have to require intensive labor. If you get off work at 5:00 p.m. and have guests coming at 7:00 p.m., these guidelines will keep you on track for preparing your house and yourself.

  1. Do A Walk Through: Clean from your front porch in. Your front door and entryway will be the first part of your home your guests see, so they should be a priority when it comes to house cleaning. Don’t forget to make space in your coat closet as well.
  2. Touch Up the Bathrooms: You will have a lot of traffic through your bathrooms by the night’s end, so it’s best to start with a clean slate. Sanitize your surfaces and make sure there is extra toilet paper easily accessible.
  3. Freshen Up: Don’t put getting yourself ready off until the last minute, or you may run out of time. When you’re tidying up the bathroom, take the time to touch up your makeup and hair so you can be party-ready without stress as the hour approaches.
  4. Make Space: Empty out your garbage, recycling container, dishwasher, and fridge. You’ll want space in the refrigerator for drinks, in the dishwasher for dirty dishes, and in all available waste containers.
  5. Set The Mood: Put on your party playlist, dim the lighting, and do a final walk through to get everything prepared. If you have time, do a final dusting and de-cluttering run through the home so everything will be picture perfect.

No party would be complete without a great venue to host it in. Contact real estate agent Betsy Dittman, an expert in California Luxury Real Estate Properties, for all of your Beverly Hills, Conejo Valley, San Fernando Valley, and Los Angeles luxury real estate needs.