Author Archives Chris Klein

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Year-end thoughts on real estate

Posted by Chris Klein on December 27, 2016  /  in Tips  /  Comments off

 

With the holidays upon us, you may not be in a frame of mind to think about end-of-year financial or tax matters. And if you ask me, that’s exactly how it should be. But when you do emerge from the joy and revelry of the holidays, I thought I’d offer you some food for thought.

I came across this article about tips for making savvy year-end money moves. This list is geared toward families, and I know that covers a great deal of Lauren’s past and current clients. If you have a moment, it’s worth the read.

There was one thing in particular on this list concerning capital gains that caught my attention from a real-estate perspective. If you sold real estate this year and made a profit, you may want to consult your tax advisor to see if you will be required to pay a capital gains tax on the proceeds. It doesn’t apply to all transactions, so it’s a good idea to check with your tax advisor on the specifics. At the very least, doing so now may save you some scrambling or surprises come tax time.

I know Lauren has thanked all of you for trusting her to guide you on your real-estate journeys this year, but I want to add my thanks, as well. It is our honor to work for you, and you made 2016 an amazing year. Lauren looks forward to sharing more about this in the early weeks of 2017.

In the meantime, I wish you all a beautiful and joyous holiday season!

An unforgettable evening with The Icons of Pittsburgh (vol. 2)

Posted by Chris Klein on October 18, 2016  /  in Awards, News, Pittsburgh, Press  /  Comments off

Lauren and I had a fun opportunity to get all dressed up and out on the town with some of Pittsburgh’s greatest earlier this month. We attended Maniac Magazine’s Icons of Pittsburgh event on Oct. 4 at the Andy Warhol Museum. (Of course you know Andy Warhol himself is an undeniable icon of Pittsburgh, and the museum, if you haven’t been, is an absolute must-see.)

 

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(The Andy Warhol Museum)

 

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The Icons of Pittsburgh is an annual award and recognition program that was created by Maniac Magazine. A panel of judges selects each year’s icons, based on strict criteria, from Pittsburgh’s professionals, entrepreneurs and leaders. These are the movers and shakers of Pittsburgh. They are given Icon status if, in addition to their professional contributions to Pittsburgh, they also bring a high level of style and class to our beautiful city.

As you can imagine, it was a great honor for Lauren and I to meet and mingle with this year’s amazing icons at the Warhol Museum. Lauren was invited as a VIP because she’s being featured next month on the cover of Maniac Magazine, which is Pittsburgh’s premier media outlet for fashion, beauty, travel, style and culture. The story will highlight Lauren’s work as the Pittsburgh Property Diva, and we all know how much style she conducts herself with in that role!

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I am, as always, very proud of Lauren. We’ll share more about her story in Maniac Magazine when it hits newsstands!

There was another reason this night was so big for us. As some of you may already know, I created a Facebook page called Pittsburgh Beautiful, which invites people to share their original photos of what makes Pittsburgh beautiful in their eyes. In the last seven months it has really blossomed, garnering about 1,000 new followers every day. We’re up to 67,000 followers so far!

We’ve gained national and international attention, and at Icons of Pittsburgh we announced a new partnership with Maniac Magazine. We debuted Pittsburgh Beautiful on the big screen at the event, sharing hundreds of breathtaking photos of Pittsburgh, submitted by Pittsburghers all over the world. Our website is also off to a great start! It was great exposure for the site, which Pittsburgh Property Diva has supported from the beginning, and I look forward to even more growth.

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(Lauren With Shannon McShane, Pittsburgh Beautiful Director of Social and Marketing)

To say the least, our evening at Icons of Pittsburgh was huge for Pittsburgh Property Diva and Pittsburgh Beautiful. It makes Lauren and I happy to no end, because we are Pittsburghers right down to our core. This work is our passion, but it also helps shine a spotlight on the truly remarkable place that Pittsburgh is. We’re honored to call it home.

If we can ever help you, or someone you know, find a home in this beautiful city, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us!

When the best REALLY IS the best

Posted by Chris Klein on September 19, 2016  /  in Blog, Buyers, Sellers, Testimonials  /  Comments off

Lauren’s talent and dedication to her clients constantly amaze me. Her reviews are always such a pleasure to read, and this one was too good not to share. I thought I’d turn it into a guest post for the blog. I want to thank Jason for taking the time to share his kind words for Lauren; they mean a lot to us.

When the best REALLY IS the best

By Jason Beattie

At the beginning of this year, my wife, Alicia, and I knew that we had some big real estate transactions in our near future. Our 5-year-old son, Mason, is an active guy, and we were quickly outgrowing our first home. On top of that, kindergarten was coming up in the fall. Our dream was to be in the Plum School District because of the fantastic schools for Mason, so we decided we’d start looking for a great real estate agent who could help us sell our Pittsburgh home and buy a new one within our limited timeframe.

We found Lauren on Zillow, where she came up as a preferred agent. Looking at all her reviews and numbers, it was clear that she was the best choice. But I was leery. Sometimes working with the best really isn’t the best; I worried she’d be so busy with all her clients that she wouldn’t have time to give us the guidance and support we knew we’d need.

I can say unequivocally that all those reservations disappeared after our initial interview with Lauren. She was so prepared, knowledgeable and approachable, we knew she’d be our agent even before the meeting was over. We hired her, and it was the best decision we could have possibly made.

The first step was to sell our house. Lauren was brilliant and fair in her advice, telling us exactly what our house was worth and at which price point it would not only sell, but sell quickly. She could not have been more spot-on, and our house sold in five days. It was unbelievable.

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From there we had to find our new home. The fourth house we looked at with Lauren was the one we fell in love with. From the moment we walked through the door, we knew it was where we were meant to be. But putting the deal together proved difficult, and had it not been for Lauren’s impressive knowledge, consummate professionalism and unwavering dedication, we would have lost our dream home.

The difficulties began when our home inspector (a top-notch referral from Lauren) found several major system repairs that the home needed in order to be a safe place for our family. The seller was cash-strapped and unable to make the repairs that we knew we needed. Their agent floundered, and the deal began to unravel. In came Lauren with her broad network of certified contractors, who agreed to make the repairs to the home and allow the sellers to pay them after the sale of the home. It was a win for everyone, and the deal went through. We were in our beautiful, safe home by May, giving us plenty of time to get settled and get Mason ready for kindergarten at a stellar school in the Plum School District.

For everything that Lauren did for us, we are forever grateful. I cannot possibly say enough about her endless knowledge, her professional connections, her kind demeanor and her never-ending responsiveness. She answered every question we had within minutes of receiving it; I’m not kidding. In my own job as a corporate banker, responsiveness to clients is of the utmost importance. I hold myself to the highest standards in that regard, and even according to my own standards Lauren put me to shame! She was truly amazing.

There is a reason Lauren has a reputation as the best, and frankly…it’s because she is. In her we found not only an irreplaceable real estate agent, we also found a friend. Someone we will remember and refer our closest friends and family to any time they need real estate guidance. When we have our housewarming party, she’ll be on the invite list! Thank you so much, Lauren!

 

 

Pittsburgh Property Diva gets new look and web presence

Posted by Chris Klein on September 06, 2016  /  in Blog, News, Pittsburgh, Trends  /  Comments off

I am so excited to announce the launch of Pittsburgh Property Diva’s new brand and website. It has been in the works since the beginning of the year, and it’s an honor to finally share it with you.

Anyone who knows Lauren knows that she conducts herself and her real estate business with the utmost class. So, it’s only fitting that the new brand identity for Pittsburgh Property Diva is classy and modern. We have brand-new photography featured on the site, and the design is clean and inviting. I hope you’ll enjoy taking a look around. The site is organized so that buyers and sellers can easily find what they’re looking for, search listings, and learn more about Lauren (and me).

I’d like to thank all of our clients, both former and current, who trust Lauren as their real estate agent. You have made her one of Pittsburgh’s top agents, and she is honored to serve you.

I’d like to invite you to keep an eye on our blog from time to time. This is where we will post all of our news. We’ll also try to feature some of our amazing clients every now and then, and keep you up-to-date with what we’re doing. I hope you’ll stay in touch, and as always thank you for referring Lauren to your friends and family.

Changes to TRID: What it means for you

Posted by Chris Klein on September 05, 2016  /  in Buyers, News, Sellers, Tips, TRID  /  Comments off

Beneficial TRID Changes

I know how daunting and complicated the real estate world can seem to those who don’t live and breathe it every single day. My greatest focus as an agent is to provide clarity and guidance to all of my clients on their real estate journey. The last thing I want you to feel is overwhelmed or confused — or both!

As a buyer or seller, you don’t necessarily need to be up on all the latest changes in the real estate industry. That’s my job. But sometimes it can be helpful to have a cursory understanding of the rules and regulations that shape your experience as a real estate consumer. In that spirit, I want to let you know of some recent developments.

In June, the National Association of Realtors (NAR) sent a letter to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) in which they outlined three proposed changes to the TILA-RESPA Integrated Disclosure Rule, which is commonly known as TRID or “Know Before You Owe.” The intent of TRID is to protect and educate consumers before they borrow money to purchase a home. The CFPB enacted TRID in October, and in April announced that it would be drafting new language to clarify the rule.

If you’re interested in reading all the nitty-gritty details about the NAR’s letter, you can do so here. But for this blogpost, I just want to share with you how these changes would affect you as a buyer or seller.

One of the biggest impacts to come from TRID was a change in how (or if) real estate agents were given access to the Closing Disclosure form prior to their clients closing on a real estate transaction. In the past, agents were granted access to these forms and it allowed us to review them for accuracy and to explain them to our clients. Since TRID went into effect, the industry has seen an increased number of errors on these forms. Not to mention a decreased ability to help our clients understand the forms they sign when they sit at the closing table.

For me, this is a problem. I want to make sure the details of your real estate transaction are correctly reflected in your official documents, and I want to be able to answer any questions you might have about those documents. After all, a real estate transaction is a big deal!

On July 29, CFPB’s response to NAR’s letter implemented these beneficial changes. You can read more about this here. I’d be happy to discuss this — or any other real-estate-related question — with you. Just let me know. As always, I’m here to help.

Lauren Klein awarded 10 Best Honor in Client Satisfaction

Posted by Chris Klein on August 18, 2016  /  in Awards, Blog, News, Press, Testimonials  /  Comments off

It’s not hard to be proud of Lauren and all of her hard work as the Pittsburgh Property Diva. Every day I am amazed by her commitment to her clients and to top-notch customer service. Client after client gives Lauren the highest marks and compliments. Check it out for yourself here and here.

In 2015, Lauren was designated a Top 10 real estate agent in client satisfaction by the American Institute of Real Estate Professionals (AIOREP). This is an award that is given only to those real estate agents with a 10-out-of-10 client-satisfaction rating and NO negative feedback. Winners are nominated by their clients and/or peers and go through a rigorous review process, wherein the AIOREP considers their awards, sales volume, industry reputation and associations. They must be determined to be an industry leader and top-rated not only by clients but peers, as well.

I am so proud of Lauren for all of her hard work that earned her this prestigious award. You can read more about it in AIOREP’s news release.

Finally, thank you to all of Lauren’s clients for reviewing her so highly and for nominating her as a Top 10 real estate agent in client satisfaction.

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3865 Reed Boulevard
Murrysville, PA 15668
(724) 327-0123

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