Fall cleaning is the new spring cleaning. With the change in the season, now is a great time to reorganize and clean your home. But what if you could clean your home just once more and then never have to clean it again? Japanese organizational consultant, Marie Kondo, makes that claim in her international bestselling book, The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up.
The KonMari method is comprised of two deceptively simple tenets: keep only what inspires joy in your heart and organize by category instead of space.
- Keep what you love: In short, if you don’t love it, get rid of it. Decluttering the KonMari way is not about how much stuff you can get rid of, but simply keeping the items that truly make you happy. Kondo instructs people to physically pick up each item and ask, “Does this spark joy?” if yes, keep it and find a home for it. If the answer is no, it goes away. This is probably the most difficult part of her method as it forces you to remove the sentimental values placed on particular items. There’s no room for ‘somedays’ with this method, you know, “maybe-I’ll-wear/use-this-someday.”
- Sort by category or type, not by room: Our first instinct when organizing is to tackle the challenge room by room. In contrast, Kondo recommends organizing by category. For example, instead of clearing out your master bedroom closet, she recommends tackling ALL the clothes in every closet and drawer in the house. Begin with tops, then bottoms and work from there. She also instructs readers in the fine art of the KonMari folding method, which frees up a lot of space in your drawers.
Kondo recommends tidying in the following order: clothes, books, papers and then everything else. In order to take the next step to living a clutter-free life without relapsing is to store all of the items of the same type in the same place so things do not become scattered and ultimately lead to more accumulation.
Whether you’re hoping to streamline your possession prior to moving or if you’re attempting to reorganize your new home, this is a method worth exploring. Have you tried the KonMari method for decluttering? Tell us about your experience.
We recently released a new phase of townhomes in Building 4 at Mission Place in Fremont! Located in the popular Mission Valley neighborhood near top ranked schools, major employment centers and great shopping and dining options, this sales release is bound to sell out quickly!
The following homes are available in Building 4:
Homesite 15 – Plan 1
- 3 Beds/3.5 Baths
- Approx. 1,829 sq. ft.
- Starting from $998,000
Homesite 14 – Plan 1X
- 3 Beds/3.5 Baths
- Approx. 1,800 sq. ft.
- Starting from $992,000
Homesite 13 – Plan 2
- 4 Beds/3.5 Baths
- Approx. 2,108 sq. ft.
- Starting from $1,146,000
Homesite 16 – Plan 3
- 4 Beds/3.5 Baths
- Approx. 2,105 sq. ft.
- Starting from $1,122,000
Mission Place model homes are open for tours on Mondays from 3pm – 5pm and Tuesday – Sunday from 10am – 5pm and are located at 2817 Driscoll Road in Fremont. For complete directions and additional information, call 510-353-1743 or visit www.summerhillhomes.com.
Get ready for a howling good time this Halloween season. From pumpkin patches to haunted houses, there are plenty of fun activities for all ages to enjoy this month around the Fremont and Sunnyvale areas.
Fall Pumpkin Tours at Full Circle Farm, Sunnyvale. Take your preschooler to tour the Children Garden to pick out a pumpkin in the field and have photo opportunity, story time, and a visit with the chickens.
J.E. Perry Farms, Fremont. Find the perfect pumpkin and explore this family-owned working organic farm.
Moreland Education Foundation Pumpkin Patch, Campbell. The MEF Pumpkin Patch is a beloved Moreland tradition that combines family fun with community building and fundraising. There will be carnivals, movies, craft fairs and concerts in addition to the pumpkin patch. It’s a wonderful way to celebrate the season and give back to the community! The pumpkin patch is open to the public Friday, Saturday and Sundays from 10/16-10/29.
Pick of the Patch Pumpkins by ABC Tree Farms, Sunnyvale and Fremont. Pick your perfect pumpkin from the quaint pumpkin patch and fun inflatable amusements.
Spina Farms Pumpkin Patch, Santa Teresa Blvd, San Jose. You’ll find over 60 varieties of pumpkins at Spina Farms, from traditional orange to pumpkins with stripes, warts, different colors, shapes and sizes! While you’re here, also enjoy a scenic tour of the farm on a hay ride pulled by an antique tractor or ride on the Spina Pumpkin Express Train that will take you to the middle of the patch, and new this year is the Harvest Tram, a perfect experience for the little ones. On the weekends there will be a petting zoo and pony rides available.
Trick or Treating
Trick or Treat on Downtown Safety Street, Fremont – October 23rd. Have fun at this trick or treating wonderland where children will gather Halloween goodies while walking through a street of miniature houses in Downtown Fremont.
Trick or Treat on the Avenue, Willow Glen (San Jose) – October 30th. Enjoy a safe trick or treat experience in Downtown Willow Glen compliments of the businesses in Downtown Willow Glen.
Festivals & Parties
Pumpkins in the Park, San Jose – October 10th. A harvest fair for families designed to promote awareness of the Guadalupe River Park and celebrate the fall season. There will be a giant pumpkin patch, a costume swap with the Children’s Discovery Museum, costume parade, carnival games, food and other free activities.
Halloween Family Fun Fest at Santana Row, San Jose – October 27th. There will be just treats at this free family fun event at Park Valencia in Santana Row. There will be free entertainment, interactive games, hands-on activities and educational activities designed for pre-school aged kids and their parents, arts and crafts, face painting, pumpkin decorating and trick-or-treating! Don’t forget to wear your costumes!
NIGHTMARE@tritonmuseum and Family Arts Day, Santa Clara – October 29th. Put on your costumes and come out to the museum for an evening of family-friendly Halloween fun! Participate in seasonal art projects and activities that are sure to put you in the fall spirit while eating snacks and sweets provided by the museum.
Spellbound: A Celebration of Books and Make-Believe at Children’s Discovery Museum, San Jose – October 31st. Celebrate make-believe through the fun of dressing-up and reading. Wear your costume and enjoy a “all treats, no tricks” bash at the Children’s Discovery Museum featuring healthy treat stations, creative costumes, science magic and a book giveaway.
Haunt History Park, San Jose – October 31st. While there are no scares at this event, there will be plenty of fun family-friendly events, from trick-or-treating, and arts and crafts activities. Children will be able to trick-or-treat at stations set up at the historic home in History Park.
Halloween Haunt at Great America, Sunnyvale. Now open on Friday, Saturday and Sunday evenings. Be prepared to be scared! There will be mazes, live shows and scare zones. Check out The Great Pumpkin Fest (now open through 11/1) during the daylight hours for the younger set. The fest features trick-or-treating with Snoopy and the Peanuts Gang, pumpkin decorating, a hay maze and coloring.
Winchester Mystery House, San Jose. Fright Nights is an experience that includes a haunted tour of the Winchester Mystery House and a brand new haunted maze that includes roaming characters straight from your worst nightmares. Every twist and turn in the maze provides an opportunity for you to prove your bravery.
Dead Time Dreams Haunted House, San Jose. A truly terrifying experience, the haunted attractions at Dead Time Dreams are the things nightmares are made of. Start your evening with the pre-show entertiainment on the Midway of Terrors and then check out the main attractions: The Devils Sacrifice and Backwoods – if you dare!
Halloween Twilight Hike, Fremont – October 30th. Spend a spooktacular evening on this hike in the hills of Coyote Hills Regional Park on the hunt for hobgoblins, witches and ghosts during sunset while learning about the ancient origins and modern traditions of Halloween. Wear your costume and enjoy a treat and a campfire story following the hike.
Halloween Train, Fremont – October 17th. Come out to the Ardenwood Farm for an evening of fun. Ride the farm’s train through the fields and woods on this evening ride and spot goblins and have a hauntingly good time. This event is designed for families with children aged 12 years and under.
Unhaunted House, Hayward - October 23rd – 24th. Enjoy an evening of Halloween crafts, storytelling, a campfire and the signature Unhaunted House at Sulphur Creek.
There are a lot of fun events happening all over the Bay Area. Wherever you decided to haunt, we hope you have a safe and spooky Halloween!
Mission Place, a new home community of 24 townhomes, is located in the popular Mission Valley neighborhood in Fremont. Mission Places is conveniently located to major freeways, employment centers, parks and is within walking distance to top ranked schools.
Today we’re featuring Residence 1, a 3 bedroom, 3.5 bathroom floorplan with approximately 1,829 square feet of living space, and there are currently two homes available starting from $998,000.
Highlighted features of Residence 1 include:
- Downstairs bedroom or den
- Private outdoor deck
- Gourmet kitchen with granite countertops and stainless steel appliances
- 2-car side-by-side attached garage
Check out the floorplan:
(click to enlarge)
View the virtual tour virtual tour here.
Make an appointment to visit Mission Place to tour our fully furnished model home today!
If you have kids, or are planning on having kids, living in a good school district can be a major selling point for prospective home buyers. Trulia recently conducted a survey and found that 19% of Americans reported that their dream home was located in a great school district. That percentage jumps to 35% for parents with children under the age of 18 years.
The quality of school districts plays a very crucial role in a home buyer’s decision on where to purchase their new home. But what exactly does ‘good school’ really mean? Realtor.com recently published an article exploring what makes a ‘good school’ and how you can find one.
Determining a ‘good school’ takes more than measuring test scores; according to educational experts it’s also about weighing the ‘less tangible goals such as fostering social and emotional intelligence…executive function skills, the ability to plan, focus, remember instructions, and multitask.’
Ultimately, it’s up to you to decide what’s best for your family and their educational needs. Here are some ways you can determine if the schools in a prospective school district are a good fit for your family:
- Find out the basics of the area schools. Test scores, class size and student-to-teacher ratios are some of the best predictors of a school (or district’s) academic performance. One educational expert recommends asking about attendance rate; a high attendance rate is a good indicator of a positive school culture.
- Determine your child’s learning style and if the school’s teaching philosophy is a good match for your child. Talk to the principal and teachers to understand how they’re able to accommodate different learning styles.
- See if schools offer programs that develop students’ emotional intelligence (EQ) in addition to academic intelligence. A high EQ is a better predictor of success, quality of relationship and overall happiness, and many experts believe it may be more important than a person’s IQ.
- Review the types of extracurricular activities that are offered. A ‘good’ school doesn’t depend on just rote memorization, but one that develops and encourages modern skills like creativity, collaboration, communication, and critical thinking. These skills can be fostered through music programs, team sports and other extracurricular activities.
- Determine what ‘good’ means to you. Sit down and pinpoint what important factors do you want from your children’s school: racial and economic diversity? Extracurricular programs? Academic support? Small class sizes? Use these factors to help guide your search for the right school for your children.
Like home shopping, finding a good school requires a lot of homework but once you find the right school, it will be incredibly rewarding. Our new home community in Sunnyvale and new home community in Fremont are in the Sunnyvale Elementary School District and Fremont Unified School District*. We encourage our home buyers to contact the schools in each district to discuss and confirm school assignment.
*SummerHill Homes does not guarantee that residency in the community will ensure a place at any of the above schools. Circumstances and school assignments can change at any time and each Homebuyer should contact the appropriate school to discuss and confirm school assignment issues.
Labor Day weekend is here! Time to kick back and relax and enjoy the final weeks of Summer with friends and family. These days, long weekends mean one thing: BBQs. If you’re hosting your own BBQ this Labor Day, here are five tips for hosting the perfect Labor Day BBQ without all the hard work:
- Know who you’re feeding
When you’re planning your menu, know the people you’re going to be feeding. While most people think burgers and hot dogs when they think of BBQ, diets can vary wildly so always try to have some other options, like chicken or fish, for people who may not want to eat red meat.
- Have a menu game plan
Don’t go into the day without a plan! Figure out what you menu will be – if you will be providing the main dish and have your guests to round out the meal by bringing side dishes (if you go this route, make sure request people bring specific items so you don’t end up with 8 desserts and a bag of chips!) or if you’ll be providing all of the food, whether your making everything or purchasing some of the meal items from a local restaurant.
If you’re still looking for some ideas of what to serve, try one of these great recipes we found on Pinterest.
- Know your timing
While you can prepare many dishes ahead of time so you can spend more time with your guests instead of in the kitchen, know how long it will take to properly cook your main dishes. There’s nothing worse than having a backyard full of people waiting with nothing ready to be served yet.
- Keep guests entertained and mingling
Have places set up so guests can easily mingle without having to stick to the dining tables. Group a few chairs in different corners of your yard so people can move around. Also plan have some fun backyard games, like a giant Jenga set or cornhole, available for adults and kids to enjoy. Not sure what games to have? Remember this tip: if you can play it while holding a drink in one hand, it’s probably a great game for a BBQ.
- Don’t stress
Sure, it’s Labor Day but that doesn’t mean you have to work your hard prepping for your BBQ. This is where having a game plan comes into play: set up as much as possible the day before the BBQ, including prepping the food that can be made ahead. Also don’t be afraid to ask for help when needed. Hosting a party doesn’t have to be a Herculean effort!
Hosting a Labor Day BBQ is a great way to celebrate the holiday with family and friends in your beautiful new home in Sunnyvale or new home in Fremont. We hope you have a happy and safe Labor Day weekend!
WalletHub recently published its list of the healthiest housing markets of 2015 so far and it’s pretty encouraging!
The insurance company Nationwide has been tracking the health of the housing industry on a quarterly basis, and at the beginning of the year reported that “the overall housing market is healthier than at any time since 2001” and is optimistic that the chances of a downturn in the future are slim.
Other positive indicators included the drop in unemployment (down to a seven-year low of 5.3%), increasing rent and consumer confidence that “might encourage lenders to open the doors to more first-time home buyers.”
We were excited to see that Sunnyvale (5) and Fremont (19) made the list! We have a beautiful new home community in both cities, Arques Place in Sunnyvale and Mission Place in Fremont. Both communities offer new townhomes near major Silicon Valley employers, top schools and restaurants, shopping and other outdoor amenities. Both communities are now open. Schedule an appointment to tour our decorated models today.
For WalletHub’s complete ranking list, visit their website.
Stunning Arques Place in Sunnyvale, CA is Now Open! Come check out our latest model home located at 617 East Arques Avenue, Sunnyvale.
This beautiful community features 85 brand new town-homes with a community club house and spacious floor plans with 2 to 4 bedrooms and 2.5 to 3.5 bathrooms. With 7 floorplans to choose from ranging from 1,440 to 1,815 square feet your sure to find the perfect home for your family.
The Grand Opening of Mission Place in Fremont, CA is this Saturday, July 18th, 2015 from 10:00am – 4:00pm.
This highly desirable new development is located in the Mission Valley neighborhood in Fremont with close proximity to Top Ranked Schools, Job Centers, BART station and Retail Amenities.
The project features 24 spacious townhomes ranking from 1,800 to 2,108 Sq. Ft. with 3 to 4 Bedrooms and 3.5 Bathrooms. All units have a large private outdoor deck and 2 car side-by-side attached garage. Choose from 7 different floor plan options with pricing anticipated to start at $1,000,000.
Visit the community at 2817 Driscoll Road in Fremont. To book an appointment with one of our sales representatives please call (510) 353-1743 or email us at [email protected] We look forward to seeing you!
With demand at record levels property prices across the Bay Area are continuing to set record highs. The median price for Santa Clara County homes reached another all-time high in April, climbing to $905,000. Alameda County, where the median price tag rose to $690,000 as did San Mateo County, at– $1,194,500.
Overall prices rose in all 9 counties throughout the region, according to CoreLogic, a real-estate data provider located in Irvine, CA. Overall, it was a hot spring selling season for the area.
With home prices and demand continuing to soar, there’s never been a better time to look at a new home from Summerhill Homes. Several new communities are coming online in the next few months. Contact us today for more information.