LANDSCAPING: It Goes a Long Way

Keep it Green: In the real estate world it is often said that “Curb Appeal is Everything.”  How your home looks from the street will determine how interested one might be about viewing the inside, especially for high priced homes. You want your lawn to be manicured, green, and inviting when your house goes up for sale.  If you have grass, make sure it’s fresh, bright green, and mowed.  Make sure to rake all leaves to create the feeling of a “clean property.”  Trim trees so they look well cared for.  In California, we have lots of palm trees; have green parts on the tree only and remove all brown parts.  If trees are hindering natural light from reaching the property and interior of the home, it is smart to trim those as well. However, make sure not to overdo it, especially if over trimming results in decreasing privacy from other neighbors.  

Drought Friendly: Since the beginning of the California drought, drought resistant landscaping works in Los Angeles instead of grass and flowers that need lots of water – succulents (we love agave plants) and pebbles and DG (decomposed granite) instead of grass and flowers are attractive and work well to conserve California water. Artificial turf works too. When choosing to take the drought friendly approach, be sure to factor in the runoff off for your property as well as the heat effect if you do not have shade from trees.

Plant Positioning & Layout: Often houses have shrubs or trees that make the yard feel smaller because they are planted right in the middle of the lawn or yard.  Having grass or pebble or DG or some other non-vertical ground cover extend from the house all the way to the property line (without shrubs or trees in between) has the eye drawn from property line to property line and makes prospective buyers appreciate the depth and width of the grounds.  Bigger outdoor spaces make houses sell for higher prices.  Views that are not interrupted by trees or shrubs make the space bigger and sell better.  DO strategically plant trees to block views of neighbors and to create privacy – where the trees won’t cut the space.   It’s a good idea to cover all exposed dirt in planter beds – either with dark brown tree bark (not red) or with small pebbles (grey).   Make sure to water and fertilize all the plants and shrubs so the landscaping is lush and inviting.


A house with manicured landscaping communicates to prospective buyers that the home is well tended and cared for.  In addition to creating a warm welcoming vibe to the space.  Homes that are manicured, in good shape, and pretty, sell for top top dollar.

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Miracle Mile Recent Home Sale – Spanish California Home

The Bienstock Group recently sold a newly remodeled two story Spanish colonial character house at 1025 S Sierra Bonita Ave just south of Olympic Blvd in Miracle Mile.  The owners did an expert job preserving the elements of character in the house, like the wood beams in the living room, the original stained glass in the entry, and the circular staircase to the second floor. They updated the floor plan and made it more modern by introducing an open dining room perfect for entertaining, a desk area and built-in breakfast nook off the kitchen, and a luxurious master suite with a white marble shower, freestanding tub, double sinks, and walk in closet.  The kitchen and all the baths are brand new.

recent home sale Miracle Mile on Sierra Bonita Ave

Miracle Mile Recent Home Sale: Great House Sold – Multiple Offers and Sold in One Week

After purchasing the home for $1,250,000 and completing a full remodel, this 2,781 square foot on a 7,433 square foot lot, with 5 beds and 4 baths sold within one week. Not only did it sell within one week, but it received multiple offers as well. In the end, this amazing home sold for $141,000 over the asking price.  It sold for $2,100,000 a record price for the street and the area!!!!

Desirable Miracle Mile Location

This Miracle Mile area is undergoing a surge in interest because of the new Metro subway line being built along Wilshire Blvd with a subway station nearby at La Brea and at Fairfax.  With Los Angeles traffic being at its worst, people are seeing the value of being in close proximity to public transportation that can move them throughout the city efficiently. This increased interest in Miracle Mile is evident in the multiple offers for 1025 S Sierra Bonita Ave and ultimately its final sale price being $141,000 over the asking price.

Miracle Mile recent home sale

At the Bienstock Group We Love What We Do, which is selling houses for top top dollar.  We sold $97M in 2016.  So far in 2017 we closed 46 transaction, year-to-date closed volume of $72M, we have $6M in escrow and we have $11M in active homes for sale.

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Google’s Venice Beach Donut Shop!


Google Home’s Mini Donut Shop:


To celebrate the launch of Google’s new donut-sized Home Mini, they built a pop-up donut shop in Venice this past Saturday and Sunday.

Inside, you’ll get the chance to win either a brand new Google Home Mini or a couple of delicious donuts. Not only that – until the product hits shelves on October 19, this donut shop is the only places on earth where you can get your hands on the new device.

It’s all free and there’s plenty more surprises inside… Learn more at



Saturday, 10/7 from 10:00 AM – 6:00 PM

Sunday, 10/8 from 10:00 AM – 6:00 PM

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Mom’s Plum Tart Recipe


1 stick (8 Tablespoons) vegan butter, room temperature
3/4 cup sugar
1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour, sifted
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
2 eggs
12 baby plums, pitted and cut in half
pinch of salt


1 teaspoon cinnamon
2 tablespoon sugar



  1. Preheat oven to 350ºF. Prepare a 9 or 10″ springform pan and set aside.
  2. Cream the butter and sugar in a mixing bowl until pale and fluffy. Add the flour, baking powder, eggs and salt and mix on low speed. Once flour is incorporated increase speed to medium and mix well.
  3. Spoon the batter into the baking pan. Arrange the plum halves skin side down in the batter. Mix the cinnamon and sugar together in a small bowl and sprinkle it over the top of the plums.
  4. Bake for 45-50 minutes, or until cake test inserted in the center comes out clean. Remove from oven and allow to cool before removing from pan and serving.

Mom's Plum Tart The Bienstock Group

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