Mint Mid-Century Modern Designed by Buff and Hensman Lands on L.A. Market


The iconic Mid-Century Modern home of Grammy-winning composer and arranger Paul Buckmaster, who died in 2017, is now on the market for $1,385,000. The Los Angeles home is being sold by Buckmaster’s estate.

Designed in 1957 by the architecture firm Buff & Hensman, it is one of the first-if not the first-residence designed by the team when they started working together.

The firm went on to form the partnership of Buff, Straub & Hensman, and designed iconic Case Study House #20, which “cemented their legacy in the celebrated Case Study Program and Los Angeles’ Modernism movement,” the Los Angeles Conservancy website notes.


Todd Goodman for Pacific Union International

Living space
Living space

Todd Goodman for Pacific Union International

Modernized kitchen
Modernized kitchen

Todd Goodman for Pacific Union International

Dining space
Dining space

Todd Goodman for Pacific Union International

What set their work apart in the Case Study Program had to do with their choice of building materials. Rather than using steel, the designers opted for wood, a decision that would become a trademark.

The notable look is evident in this sleek, rectilinear, wood-and-glass jewel box on the market.

“It’s supercool,” says Richard Stearns, who is co-listing the home with Carrie Berkman Lewis; both are with Pacific Union International.

The well-preserved home hasn’t changed much since its inception.

“It’s got that vibe. You walk in, and here I am in 1950s,” says Stearns. “The finishes, the glass, the ceilings, and courtyards-it’s pretty authentic.”

Buckmaster bought the pad in 1998, and made some updates. He added the cantilevered pool, modernized the kitchen with stone counters and new appliances, and gave the bathrooms a refresh as well.

The 1,540-square-foot home sits on a large, street-to-street lot in the serene setting of Nichols Canyon. There are two bedrooms and two bathrooms. The open floor plan features walls of glass, cantilevered overhangs, and several “flex spaces,” according to the listing. The sliding glass doors open to the pool, spa, and deck.

Buckmaster, who died at age 71, had collaborated with rock greats, including Elton John, the Rolling Stones, David Bowie, and more recently Guns N’ Roses, Heart, and Taylor Swift.  Buckmaster famously arranged “Space Oddity” for Bowie, and scored the 1995 movie “12 Monkeys.”

“That house was his working studio,” says Stearns, who notes that there’s been interest in the mod pad from people in the music business. “They probably love it for the same reasons he did. It’s a very Zen, inspirational place.”

While the list price seems reasonable for a Mid-Century Modern masterpiece, it most likely will go for more. A Buff & Hensman design in mint condition isn’t easy to find.

“They’re pretty rare, especially when they haven’t been ruined. We’re going to be getting multiple offer insanity,” Stearns predicts. It sounds like a hit to us.

The post Mint Mid-Century Modern Designed by Buff and Hensman Lands on L.A. Market appeared first on Real Estate News & Insights |®.


The Dark Side of the New Tax Reform Act for Multifamily Investors

I don’t see a sweeping downside in this legislation, but it may have a side effect that will create new challenges for multifamily syndicators.

View the full article: The Dark Side of the New Tax Reform Act for Multifamily Investors on The BiggerPockets Blog. This content is Copyright © 2017 BiggerPockets, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

A New Spin on Storage: 8 Clever Uses for the Lazy Susan


Photo by Occasion/; Photo by Plain & Fancy Custom Cabinetry; Photo by Karen at The Art of Doing Stuff

Your mother might have had one on her kitchen table, or perhaps your grandmother used one to swivel homemade cakes as she iced them.

When you think of the Lazy Susan, a simple spinning base with an attached platter, you probably think of it in a 1960s kitchen, or on the table in a Chinese restaurant. But this circular catch-all actually has a rather interesting backstory-and today, it’s a true MVP of the organizing world.

“I personally use Lazy Susans all over my house, and I set my clients up with them, too,” reports Jamie Novak, organizing pro and author of “Keep This Toss That.”

Don’t have one of these nifty gadgets? You can pick up a range of styles at all price points from Amazon, The Container Store or Pottery Barn-and you can often unearth them at garage and yard sales, too.

Who was Susan, anyway?

But first, let’s discuss how we got here. Who was “Susan” and was she actually so lazy as to have an item named after her?

Historians are fuzzy when it comes to this item’s origin, but some point to our third president as Lazy Susan’s founding father.

“Apparently, Thomas Jefferson named the gadget ‘Lazy Susan’ after a daughter who wasn’t keen on doing chores or serving food,” explains Maeve Richmond, founder of the organizing company Maeve’s Method.

Others trace the history to 18th-century England, when the spinner was called a dumbwaiter.

“Household help was on the decline, so it was used as a servant replacement,” Richmond explains. Eventually, Lazy Susans were built into wall elevators to lift and spin heavy trays of food.

Today, these items top tables and counters in many U.S. homes. Newer homes have them built into kitchen cabinets as an easy way to grab pots and pans.

But what else can they do? Turns out, Susan-she’s not so lazy after all! Read on for all the ways you can use this simple item to organize almost everything in your home.

1. Tame the pantry

Photo by Declutter with Sarah 

The most obvious way to use a Lazy Susan, of course, is for what it was originally intended: serving food. These babies can be a blessing on your dinner table, in your pantry, or on your cupboard shelves.

If your family is condiment-crazy, pick up this spinner and place it right on the dinner table so everyone can grab what they’re looking for, offers Julie Coraccio of Reawaken Your Brilliance.

Then, in your pantry, organize canned goods and spices with a Lazy Susan, so you can easily see-and grab-what you need. Group like items together (baking supplies on one, coffee, tea, sugar, and mugs on another) to keep yourself ultra-organized. You can even create a wheel of snacks!

2. Bundle bath supplies

Photo by Plain & Fancy Custom Cabinetry

Cotton swabs, nail polish, face cream, and your toothbrush can be lined up on a Lazy Susan for a faster morning routine.

“Add a small one if you have a lot of medications you need to keep track of,” offers Julie Coraccio of Reawaken Your Brilliance.

“And if you have the counter space, dress up a Lazy Susan with small plants and apothecary jars filled with soaps,” suggests Jeanine Boiko, a home blogger at Okio B Designs and real estate agent with Exit Realty Gateway in Wantagh, NY.

3. Amp up a party

Put a new spin on entertaining with a lazy Susan.
Put a new spin on entertaining with a Lazy Susan.

Photo by

Boiko loves to use her Lazy Susan when she’s entertaining-grab a few Mason jars of varying sizes to hold forks, knives, and spoons, and pop them on to a Lazy Susan. You’ll save more counter space than you think.

Plus, these spinners allow you to get creative with how you serve.

“Place all those ice cream sundae fixings in dishes on a Lazy Susan, and let kids go to town at a sleepover. Or use it to hold the ingredients for mimosas at a bridal or baby shower,” suggests Christine Kennedy of C&C Organizing.

On that note, don’t forget the bar cart!

“Put liquor, bottle stoppers, and your wine opener on it for a fun touch at a party,”  suggests Carson Yarbrough, savings expert at

4. In the bedroom

Photo by April C. Schmidt

“I have a Lazy Susan on my dresser to hold the jewelry and beauty products that I reach for all the time,” Novak says.

You can also take this spinner into your closet to organize shoes, bags, and belts.

“Install a multi-tiered one so you can designate each level for a particular shoe-like sandals, heels and flats,” Kennedy recommends. “Plus, using one this way helps save space.”

5. In the fridge

A lazy Susan in the fridge? Sounds like a pretty chill idea.
A Lazy Susan in the fridge? Sounds like a pretty chill idea.

Photo by Alyssa Longobucco/

“Sticky marinade jars and salad dressings are perfect for a Lazy Susan in the fridge, because the lip on it catches drips and prevents them from making a bigger mess,” Novak says.

Plus, you never have to worry again about forgotten condiments shoved into the back of the fridge.


6. To arrange cleaning supplies

under sink
Stash spray cleaners and towels on a spinner.

Mommy Suite

You know how hard it is to bend over and crane your neck into the black hole under your sink? Fix this sitch with a Lazy Susan that houses your cleaning supplies.

Put this item in the bathroom and kitchen-and stick one in your laundry area to hold dryer sheets, a stain stick, and detergent, Kennedy suggests.

7. For your office supplies

See? The lazy Susan can be the epitome of productivity.
See? The Lazy Susan can be the epitome of productivity.

Photo by

Novak stores pens in a mug on her Lazy Susan, and then adds all the other requisite office supplies-a stapler, tape, return address stamp, and more.

The best part? When you clean, you can just lift the entire thing and dust underneath-no more navigating around tiny objects.

8. Make a tableau

Give your decor a new spin anytime you want with a lazy Susan.
Give your decor a new spin anytime you want with a Lazy Susan.

Photo by Louise De Miranda/Houzz

Set up pretty collectibles on a Lazy Susan on a bookcase shelf.

“It allows you to change the view with a little spin and see something new,” Novak says.

Or use one as a centerpiece, Boiko recommends. “Put a variety of candles on it for instant ambiance.”

The post A New Spin on Storage: 8 Clever Uses for the Lazy Susan appeared first on Real Estate News & Insights |®.

The low-down on self-showings: Do the benefits outweigh the risks?

Self-Showings for Rental Properties: Pros and Cons | Buildium

The real estate market has been flooded with new technologies as of late. All sorts of companies (including Buildium!) have sprung up to make it easier to own, rent, or manage rental properties. Who doesn’t want that?!

One subset of the real estate tech market we’ve been watching is around products that enable “self-showings.” This includes 3D property tours, smart locks, and now even robots!

However, while self-showings are a promising technology, they may not work for everyone. Let’s take a closer look.

What Are Self-Showings?

Traditionally, whenever a prospective renter wanted to see an apartment, the property manager, landlord, or leasing agent would need to schedule an in-person showing. This often required a lot of back-and-forth communication. When is the apartment available for a showing? Can you meet me there at 5 PM on Friday? Whoops, my roommate wants to come-can we move this to 7 PM on Sunday?

There are so many logistics to coordinate when it comes to showing apartments. In a best case scenario, both parties find a mutually agreeable time to walk through the unit. Both arrive on time. It only takes one showing to lease the apartment.

In reality, leasing an apartment usually takes much more effort. The owner, property manager, or leasing agent might need to make 15 trips to the apartment before it’s finally leased. The traditional leasing process isn’t convenient for anyone-the owner, agent, or renter.

Self-showings are intended to streamline the leasing process. Instead of showing the unit in-person, the owner or property manager leverages technology to allow prospective renters to tour the property on their own, at their own convenience.

The Self-Showing Process

In the simplest form of a self-showing, the leasing agent will leave a set of keys in a lockbox. He or she will give the code to the prospect, who can get the keys and tour the property on their own schedule. After touring the property, they just put the keys back into the lockbox.

Naturally, property owners have concerns about just handing over the keys. What if someone damages the unit? What if they take off with the keys? What recourse do you have? These are all completely valid concerns.

That’s where new technologies come into play.

A combination of new software and smart lock technologies have made self-showings safer than ever. Companies like Rently and ShowMojo offer software that integrates with certain smart locks. Landlords leave a smart lockbox at each unit that they’re trying to rent. The lockbox is controlled remotely by the service provider, and the service provider can send a unique access code to anyone interested in viewing the apartment.

The software providers have safety features built-in.

For instance, anyone interested in touring a property secured by Rently has to sign up for an account in advance. They are required to submit personal information to confirm who they are. Rently then sends a verification code via text message to a user’s cell phone, and that code is used to authenticate the person’s account.

Before they can tour the property, Rently requires users to submit their credit card information. Rently charges a $0.99 fee to ensure that the credit card is valid. That credit card is then kept on file in case the person causes any damage at a property during their self-guided tour.

Once authentication is complete, a user specifies when they’d like to see the property. The owner or property manager can set restrictions, such as limiting showings to certain hours of the day. Generally speaking, however, self-showings enable a prospect to tour properties 24/7, 365 days per year.

The process of getting into the unit can vary. Some software applications will send users a code approximately 15 minutes before their scheduled appointment. They’ll use this code to unlock the smart lock. Other software applications require users to check in at the apartment using a mobile app in order to receive the code. In either case, the codes are unique to that user and will expire after a certain period of time.

Once inside the unit, the prospect can tour the apartment at his or her own pace. When the tour is complete, the person just pops the key back into the lockbox. This process automatically notifies the property manager, landlord, or leasing agent that the user has vacated the unit. In effect, this creates a paper trail as to who toured the property and when.

Pros and Cons of Self-Showings

Property managers, landlords, and leasing agents often have mixed opinions about self-showings.

The pros of self-showings include:

  • Less coordination is needed between the property manager, landlord, leasing agent, and prospective renter. Time wasted coordinating and conducting showings can instead be spent on other responsibilities.
  • It becomes significantly easier to show apartments that are geographically spread out. However, it may lengthen the amount of time that a property owner can self-manage before having to hire a property manager.
  • Self-showings help to shorten the leasing cycle by getting prospects in the door faster.
  • Property managers can grow their portfolios more easily. This is because each leasing agent can oversee more units, since each vacant unit requires less hands-on management.
  • Renters get instant gratification by touring properties as soon as they want.
  • People can tour units multiple times without feeling like a burden. If they like the unit, they can schedule another showing for their parents, roommates, or significant other. They can even schedule a third or fourth visit to measure whether their furniture will fit into the apartment.

However, as we mentioned before, not everyone is thrilled with the self-showing concept. Here are some of the downsides of self-showings:

  • Self-showings are really only appropriate for leasing vacant apartments. When an apartment is occupied, the prospect should be accompanied during the showing to protect the interests of the existing tenant.
  • Prospects may have questions during the self-showing, and it can be tough to get answers if they’re touring the property on their own.
  • Monthly rental fees for smart lockboxes can start to add up. It’s important for property managers and landlords to do the math on whether they should rent vs. own smart lockboxes. This will depend on how many units they manage, how many of those are vacant at any given time, and for how long (on average).
  • Not all renters are technologically adept. Older renters, in particular, may not feel comfortable utilizing self-showings.
  • Self-showings are not 100% foolproof. Glitches in software happen from time to time. There is also always a risk that a person will cause damage to the unit, lose the keys, etc. Safeguards can be put into place, but there’s still some level of risk involved.

Other Ways to Improve Rental Showings

Self-showings can be useful as part of a larger strategy to deliver a better rental experience. A hybrid approachone that includes both self-showings and traditional in-person property tourscan alleviate some of the coordination pressures, while still providing high quality service to prospective tenants.

In addition, tools like Buildium’s Showing’s Coordinator, powered by Tenant Turner, can help property managers, landlords, and leasing agents to more easily coordinate rental showingswithout leaving prospective residents to fend for themselves. Showings Coordinator “offers showing scheduling software to better manage prospective tenants. Their robust platform works for you 24/7/365, whether you have a dozen rentals or thousands. All of your prospective tenants are ushered through a Fair Housing-compliant pre-qualification process. [It] scores each candidate based on your criteria and lets only qualified prospects schedule a viewing. You can show the rental yourself; assign the showing to someone else; use electronic lockboxes, combo lockboxes, or key checkout-your choice!”

Interested in learning more? Check out this blog post: Announcing Showings Coordinator, Powered by Tenant Turner

Can ‘self-showings’ help property managers fill vacancies faster? Learn more on the #BuildiumBlog!

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Would you consider conducting self-showings for your rental units? Let us know in the comments!

P.S. Be sure to subscribe to the Buildium blog to stay up-to-date on industry news and the issues you care about. Click here to sign up now!

The post The low-down on self-showings: Do the benefits outweigh the risks? appeared first on Buildium.

Highboy vs. Tallboy vs. Lowboy: What’s the Difference Between These Dressers?


Photo by Dwiggs and Dwellings LLC/Houzz;iStock

You’ve seen a highboy dresser in museums, antiques shops, and your mother-in-law’s boudoir. But what is this item’s purpose, exactly-and where does it come from?

“This great-looking piece seems like it should fit in the Victorian era, but it’s actually French in origin, from the time of Louis XIII,” explains Sara Chiarilli, an interior designer with Artful Conceptions, in Tampa, FL.

How can this pretty piece be used in the home-and what’s the difference between highboy, tallboy, and lowboy dressers? Our experts on antique furniture set the record straight. Read on.

What is a highboy dresser?

Photo by Panageries 

A “highboy” is the layman’s term for a tall chest of drawers, says Julie Muniz, a curator and art consultant at in the San Francisco Bay Area. “Other names for this piece of furniture are ‘chest-on-chest’ or ‘chest-on-stand,’ because it’s composed of two case pieces that stack vertically,” she says. They are also called “high chests.”

While highboys were once made of two pieces that could be taken apart, now you’ll likely find them fused together with the smaller one on top. Drawers might span the length of the piece, though some highboys have both full-length and smaller drawers in a row in the upper section.

Where did the name ‘highboy’ come from?

“The term ‘highboy’ came about in the late 19th century as a corruption of the French word bois, which means wood-so the name literally means ‘high wood,’” explains Muniz.

Today, the term might be applied to any dresser that’s higher than it is wide or any chest or bureau that stands upright.

“Highboys can be fantastic antique finds. And if they’re associated with famous American makers, they can be enormously valuable,” says Beverly Solomon of Beverly Solomon Design.

Highboy vs. tallboy vs. lowboy

Photo by Maya Design Studio 

Highboy and tallboy might seem interchangeable, but there’s a distinct difference between these two types of dressers.

“A tallboy includes a wardrobe on top, while a highboy is all drawers,” says Chiarilli. “’Tallboy’ is generally thought of as a European term, whereas ‘highboy’ is more American,” Muniz says.

A lowboy, however, generally refers to a dressing table or console.

Today, you might hear the term “lowboy” to describe any low or long dresser, console table, or bedroom vanity that comes up to about waist level. “Today’s lowboys typically have a mirror, art, or a TV above them,” says Liz Toombs, an interior decorator and president of PDR Interiors, in Lexington, KY.

Where can you find highboys in a home?

Working a highboy into your home’s design scheme means you’ll be adding extra storage. But beyond holding your clothes in your bedroom, highboys can be useful and stylish in other rooms, too.

Chiarilli suggests using a highboy as a foyer piece. Stash a coat rack close by and a tray on top for mail, keys, and loose change to create a landing spot when you come in the door.

This piece can also work in the dining room to hold tablecloths, napkins, and candles.

“China cabinets, buffets, and credenzas are sometimes mistakenly call highboys when placed in a dining area, but this is technically incorrect,” Muniz explains.

You might also place a highboy in a large bathroom to store towels and soaps.

“It’s fine to use a piece in a nontraditional way because that’s what makes a home more interesting,” says Toombs.

The post Highboy vs. Tallboy vs. Lowboy: What’s the Difference Between These Dressers? appeared first on Real Estate News & Insights |®.

eCommerce Is Killing Retail, But Where Does That Leave Landlords? We Asked a Shopping App CEO

Times have been tough for retail landlords in recent years, as retailers are filing bankruptcies at a blistering pace. And it’s not just mom-and-pop stores that are folding – this trend is led by iconic brands like Toys “R” Us. On the property-owner side, real estate moguls and market experts have declared retail all but dead, though […]

View the full article: eCommerce Is Killing Retail, But Where Does That Leave Landlords? We Asked a Shopping App CEO on The BiggerPockets Blog. This content is Copyright © 2017 BiggerPockets, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

5 Most Historic Sites in Charleston, SC

Historical Sites in Charlestion

You may know Charleston, SC as a charming southern town, but when you move there, you’ll discover that the city is also brimming with American history. Once you settle down and unpack after your move, you can take advantage of the numerous historic sites in Charleston, SC. You can fill your weekends with enjoyable outings, […]

The post 5 Most Historic Sites in Charleston, SC appeared first on Unpakt Blog.