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New & Notable Luxury Properties for Sales | July 2018

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Singapore | Jonathan PAN, List Sotheby’s International Realty 

The Harbour View House is located on the northern of Sentosa Cove and enjoys a spectacular view across the sea towards the soon-to-be Greater Southern Waterfront of Singapore’s mainland. Designed by the renowned SCDA Architects, this two-story seaside home has two wings connected by an entry pavilion at its south, and in them sits a deep courtyard.

Coral Gables, Florida | Dennis Carvajal, ONE Sotheby’s International Realty

An extraordinary Neoclassical waterfront estate in the exclusive guard-gated Gables Estates, this grand home sits on nearly two-and-one-half acres of abundant tropical landscaping, including over 600 different species of palms, trees, plants and flora all perfectly positioned to thrive. The estate radiates elegance with dramatic hallways to highlight the vaulted arches, arched doorways, and impact windows to allow for the natural light to emphasize the grandeur of the home.

London, England | Lee Koffman, United Kingdom Sotheby’s International Realty

A stunning four-bedroom penthouse apartment positioned within this luxury development and accessed via one of two private passenger lifts, this engaging home benefits from an amazing wrap-around balcony offering breath-taking views across Primrose Hill, Regent’s Park, and the London city skyline. Inside, this penthouse apartment has an abundance of natural light flowing through each of the bedrooms, while the open-plan kitchen/breakfast/reception room invites family members or guests to unwind and enjoy the views.

Moscow, Russia | Elena Rudenkaia, Moscow Sotheby’s International Realty 

The timeless homes at Noble Row are located in the most prestigious area of Moscow near Ostozhenka; the project represents a completely new format of deluxe-class properties in Moscow. An international team of professionals who have received world recognition and authority such as Ralph Lauren Home, Gregory Tuck Architecture, Foly & Cox, and Christopher Peacock were among those involved, creating living spaces noted by architecture and design magazines Galerie and Departures, giving them their highest praise.

Salzburg, Austria | Dali Shoval, Austria Sotheby’s International Realty 

This striking property is located at the foot of the Gaisberg, one of the most exclusive locations in Salzburg. Above the rooftops of the festival city, the location features a magnificent view. The highest-quality equipment is featured throughout the house’s four floors, five bedrooms with bathrooms, master bedroom, and living area on the ground floor with fireplace and access to the terrace. A Valcucine kitchen including a Gaggenau wine cabinet/ice maker, equipped gym, sauna area, indoor pool and lounge are also featured in this home.

Sotheby’s International Realty Brand Ranks Among Nation’s Best in REAL Trends/The Wall Street Journal Report

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Sotheby’s International Realty Affiliates LLC today announced that the Sotheby’s International Realty® brand claimed 40 of the top 250 sales associates in the Individual Sales Volume category of the 2018 REAL Trends/The Wall Street Journal “The Thousand.” In addition, 12 teams affiliated with the Sotheby’s International Realty brand were recognized as being among the top 250 teams in the nation by sales volume. The annual report ranks America’s top 1,000 residential real estate agents and teams based on 2017 annual sales volume and transaction sides.

“The representation of Sotheby’s International Realty brand sales associates on this list validates their professionalism and market expertise,” said Philip White, president and chief executive officer of Sotheby’s International Realty Affiliates LLC. “We are proud of their exceptional performance and commitment to the brand, providing the finest real estate services to garner a brand record of $108 billion in global sales volume in 2017.”

Click here to see the Sotheby’s International Realty brand affiliated sales associated represented on “The Thousand.”

The Sotheby’s International Realty network currently has more than 22,000 affiliated independent sales associates located in approximately 950 offices in 70 countries and territories worldwide.  In 2017, the brand achieved a record global sales volume of $108 billion USD.  Sotheby’s International Realty listings are marketed on the sothebysrealty.comglobal website.  In addition to the referral opportunities and widened exposure generated from this source, the firm’s brokers and clients will benefit from an association with the Sotheby’s auction house and worldwide Sotheby’s International Realty marketing programs.  Each office is independently owned and operated.

The complete Thousand Top Real Estate Professionals list can be found on REAL Trends’ website, www.realtrends.com.

Design Ideas | Create a Relaxing Haven at Home

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The best escapes aren’t always at a five-star hotel. A well-appointed home can be the place you let go, relax, and indulge in the good life in a style perfectly suited to your tastes. With these relaxing design concepts to spark your imagination, it’ll be easy to cultivate vacation tranquility, whether or not you ever leave the house.

Maximize Indoor-Outdoor Living

It’s scientifically proven that being outside lower stress levels, improves focus, and boosts your energy levels. So why limit yourself to one patio space when you can luxuriate on several? Have your breakfast on the terrace, watch the sun go down from the infinity pool, and leave the walls to your bedroom wide open to let the ocean air lull you to sleep.

British Virgin Islands | Maritha KeilBritish Virgin Islands Sotheby’s International Realty

Look down on sparsely-populated white sand beaches over an end-of-day bottle of wine, brought up from your own private cellar at Katitche Point Greathouse in the British Virgin Islands. Pyramid-style roof designs let in extra ventilation, private verandas border the bedroom suites, and an interior courtyard outfitted with tropical landscaping offers secluded reflection. Find the ultimate relaxation in the master suite outdoor bath and shower, nestled amongst natural flora.

Argolida, Greece | Stephanie Michalopoulou,Greece Sotheby’s International Realty

The Aman Residences in Argolida, Greece make waking up to the Argo-Saronic Gulf spectacularly natural. With floor-to-ceiling sliding walls, tastefully-appointed rooms in your private villa turn into extended terraces with infinity pools flanked by beautiful countryside. Take advantage of the common spaces for fantastic outdoor dining and incredible open-air spa treatments.

Find Space to Play

Let home be the place that you indulge your childish enthusiasm. Of course you need the plush sleeping quarters and the lavish chef’s kitchen, but don’t forget about the power of a well-equipped games room, cooling lap pool, or a funky cocktail bar.

North Palm Beach, Florida | Cristina CondonTodd Peter, & Frances PeterSotheby’s International Realty – Palm Beach Brokerage

In addition to an incredible indoor-outdoor set up, this 25,878-square-foot residence in North Palm Beach, Florida has a fun beachy vibe that carries throughout the house. Take a time out at the swimming pool complete with waterslide and spa, play 21 on the half court, practice your swing on the putting green, or play solids vs. stripes in your breezy billiard room, complete with a cold pint from your wet bar.

Rancho Palos Verdes, California | Chris AdlamVista Sotheby’s International Realty

Somewhere between the dramatic staircase, the nine fireplaces, and the 500-gallon fish tank, you’ll need to hit pause and take it all in at this custom-built California home. Best to bask in the glow of your 1,300-bottle refrigerated wine cellar or at the edge of your pool-adjacent bar, complete with swordfish motif. Then watch the sunset from the pool, and let your stresses melt away.

Use Natural Water-Blue Accents

One of the most calming color palettes there is, blue remains top of the list for invoking serenity. At once energizing and therapeutic, ocean blue is the ideal accent for your relaxing haven. And one step better than splashing it on walls or framing it in art is opening your doors to an endless water vista.

Anguilla | Scott HauserAnguilla Properties Sotheby’s International Realty

The ocean meets the sky in a brilliant shade of turquoise at this Anguilla property. Set yourself up to take it all in on a stunning glass terrace outfitted with bright white loungers overlooking the pristine beach below. When you need some shade, head inside and whip up something fresh in the gourmet kitchen.

Grand Baie, Mauritius | Nawsheen Herburrun & Nicolas Le MerleMauritius Sotheby’s International Realty

Let island living wash over you from the beautiful soaker pool at this Grand Baie villa on the isle of Mauritius. When you’re not off on a boat trip or snorkeling for the day, relax on the pool deck or sip slushy cocktails in the poolside gazebo. Wherever you are, the natural elements at this stunning villa will keep you distinctly unwound.

Let the Light In

Nothing does quite as much for design as the color white. Ask any design aficionado and they’ll tell you that the eye typically goes to the brightest part of a composition. And at home, when living areas are awash in pearly brights, the spaces to discover seem endless.

St. Martin | Lesley ReedSt. Martin Sotheby’s International Realty

This beachfront estate on the Caribbean island of St. Martin brings white outdoors to great effect. The property’s curtained pavilion offers a cooling respite from the Plum Bay sun, allowing for al fresco dining and sultry cross breezes. Take a dip in the heated pool after the sun goes down, or entertain guests in one of the property’s chic dining areas. The home’s features include a two-story master suite, two private balconies, and an easy 10-minute drive to the island’s international airport. Perched above turquoise waters, this oceanview gem offers the perfect spot to breathe deeply and enjoy the view.

Mykonos, Greece | George KasimisGreece Sotheby’s International Realty

In true Grecian style, the Argari observatory in Mykonos is outfitted in white to cast off an unrelenting sun. The property’s four independent houses are nestled in a pocket of privacy in the rocky hills, guaranteeing guests a peaceful retreat. Set yourself adrift in the infinity pool or stretch out under the shade of an outdoor veranda, taking in all the beauty the Mykonos hills have to offer while knowing you’re never more than 15 minutes away from the bustle of boutique shopping and the ease of fine dining.

The formula for your own relaxed haven is quite simple: a little light, some sea-blue accents, open-air living, and the potential for fun.

Glean more design insights from these tastefully-decorated homes and find your own piece of paradise.

6 Unique Homes You Can Own

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Among today’s burgeoning suburbs and made-to-order homes, a one-of-a-kind property catches the eye. Whether through a bespoke bamboo terrace or impeccably-preserved French Revolution-era décor, a truly unique home announces itself in the details, in unexpected flourishes and hidden charms that astonish and delight. When an original design comes along, prospective buyers stand up and take note. Never one to blend, these uncommon homes are full of the finishing touches you won’t find anyplace else, no builder catalog required.

The Upgraded Mountain Lodge, Beaver Creek, Colorado

Mick KellyLIV Sotheby’s International Realty

This modern Beaver Creek build reinterprets and transcends all the rustic, live-off-the-land grit of the traditional mountain home. Awash in American-country design, every room is warm, charming, and perfectly homey, even on the snowiest days. Of particular note: the three-level submersible pool with dramatic oceanic murals, crafted by Cirque du Soleil
engineers, and the 1,674-square-foot terrace offering sweeping mountain views.

The Incredible Equestrian Villa, Seville, Spain

Angeles GuerreroKristina Szekely Sotheby’s International Realty

Just 15 minutes from Seville stands this incomparable 3,000-square-meter cortijo, a window into the past. Across 152 hectares, the estate encompasses a bull ring with hand-carved Mexican woodwork, a beautifully-decorated hermitage for religious celebrations, and a pavilion complete with cinema, flamenco tablao, billiard area, decorated bar, sprawling swimming pool, and two dressage rings. Livestock, bullfighter costumes, and horse-drawn carriages come with the home, so you can revisit 1929 at your leisure.

The Revolution-Era Dream House, Chantilly, France

Alexandre AbitbolParis Ouest Sotheby’s International Realty

Romance is alive and well on the grounds of La Faisanderie du Grand Conde. Dating back to 1774, the property was inaugurated by the Duchess of Bourbon prior to the French Revolution in 1789. Today, the 17th-century details remain amongst modern upgrades, chandeliers and statues commingling with refurbished antiques, a magnificent French garden with ponds, multiple terraces, and a swimming pool.

The Modern and Tranquil Glass House, Hokkaido, Japan

List Sotheby’s International Realty

Whether  enjoying views of lush trees from the comfort of an indoor hinoki wood tub in spring or reading a book by the fire while the snow falls in the winter, you’ll be at one with nature in this custom-built home in Hirafu Village. A gorgeous blend of glass, concrete, and steel, this is a property that marries comfort and design (and was voted one of Japan’s top 200 homes for just that reason). Floor-to-ceiling windows let in much more than light—namely, panoramic views of Niseko and Mount Yōtei in the distance.

The Ultimate Beach Villa, Queensland, Australia

Joseph Lordi and Douglas TonkinQueensland Sotheby’s International Realty

Australia’s Sunshine Coast is unlike anywhere else in the world, and there’s no better way to experience it than inviting its rays and ocean breeze right in. Bright blue Pacific waters are just beyond the infinity pool perched at the edge of this hilltop house. Across four levels, indoor-outdoor entertaining is at its peak with a sprawling terrace overlooking the township below. Elsewhere, a retro breakfast booth, master suite spa, and 12-car garage make a masterful impression, as does the short-and-sweet walk to the beach below.

The Laid Back Coastal Gem, Amalfi Coast, Italy

Sabrina MajelloItaly Sotheby’s International Realty

Steps up the coastal rock of the famous Amalfi Coast, bathed in the light from the shining blue waters of the Tyrrhenian Sea, waits Villa Pieds dans l’eau (feet in the water). This incredible home was once a rope factory, until the Chandon family turned it into a private residence under the careful watch of Spanish architect Julio Lafuente, who merged the factory building with a stone house in the back, once owned by Coco Chanel herself. A love of outdoor living was top priority for the Chandons, and the beautiful bamboo-roofed terrace remains the crown jewel of a beautiful home composed of natural rock walls, bright white and sea blue decor, and a spiral stone staircase leading to eight bedrooms, each with their own sea view.

These six unique homes blend history, design, and setting in unforeseen ways, making them some of the most sought-after properties in the world.

Find your own unique abode from among the best the world has to offer, and get the inside track on the latest show-stopping homes on the market today.

Significant Sales | Volume II – Issue VIII

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From a timeless Port Royal estate in Florida to a striking contemporary home in Belgiumthis edition of Significant Sales also showcases homes from the United States and the Cayman Islands.

See the entire issue of Significant Sales here

Forty Years of Film | Mountainfilm Celebrates Landmark Anniversary

  • By Katie Klingsporn, Special to the Planet, The Telluride Daily Planet
Mountainfilm
A still photo from the archival film “Odworot,” which plays this weekend as part of Mountainfilm’s retrospective program. (Photo courtesy of Mountainfilm)

It was the mid-1970s, and Telluride was a far cry from the bustling international tourist destination it is today. Streets were unpaved, the population numbered in the hundreds and the town was in transition as the economy shifted from hard-rock mining to a service-based industry centered around its new ski resort.

A young couple named Bill and Susan Kees had moved to town — part of an emerging population of free-spirited young people making roots in the community. Both embraced their new outdoor playground: Bill was an avid rock climber, and Susan went on to write the definitive trail guidebook, “The Telluride Hiking Guide.”

One day, Bill came across an article in a climbing magazine about Lito Tejada-Flores, who had forged a new ascent on Patagonia’s Mount Fitz Roy with a team of climbers and made a documentary about the feat. The film had played at a mountain film festival in Trento, Italy.

That planted a seed in Bill’s mind. Telluride, he thought, would be an ideal location for a mountain film festival. He sent a letter to Tejada-Flores, but nothing came of it at first. It wasn’t until 1976, when Tejada-Flores and his wife, Linde, moved to Telluride to work at the ski area, that the men connected and the idea of a festival began to gain real traction.

They hatched a plan, enlisting local climbers, churches and the town to help, and somehow made it happen. The first Mountainfilm took place over Memorial Day Weekend 1979. By day, participants scattered to the mountains to go climbing or spring ski touring. By night, they gathered in the Sheridan Opera House to watch mountain-related films. Tejada-Flores’ “Fitz Roy” was the marquee film. Former Colorado Gov. Dick Lamm was the Guest of Honor. The whole scrappy effort was pulled off with little money, admittedly loose planning and a lot of help from a group of climbers nicknamed the Ophir Wall Bums.

But it stuck: 40 years later, Mountainfilm has established itself as one of Telluride’s best-loved festivals. From three days, 27 films and one theater, it has grown into a four-day international gathering, featuring more than 150 films in eight theaters and hundreds of special guests. And while it still celebrates mountain art with adventure films and climbing pioneers, Mountainfilm’s programming now also encompasses documentaries about social justice, disappearing cultures, environmental battles and political game-changers.

Festival Director Suzan Beraza said it’s the intimacy of the festival combined with this substantive programming that’s made Mountainfilm such an enduring event.

“Telluride attracts people who are like-minded as far as caring about doing what we can to leave a better world, and I feel like the programming really resonates with that,” Beraza said.

Along with being electrified by the stories, Beraza added that the audience has incredible access to people who are heroes in the worlds of environmental justice, political activism and indomitable spirit. And the festival’s setting — a beautiful box canyon during a magical time of year — doesn’t hurt, either.

The festival is celebrating its landmark anniversary in a big way this weekend. Along with the usual fare of eye-opening documentary films, cutting edge art and world-class presenters, the festival will feature a special retrospective program of archival films playing all weekend in the library; nods to climbing history with guests like Conrad Anker, David Breashears and David Roberts; panels on the festival’s history; an art exhibit of 40 years of festival posters and a 40th bash on Saturday night in Heritage Plaza. Mountainfilm will also be selling copies of Susan Dalton’s new book, “Mountainfilm: 40 Years,” a souvenir book that chronicles the festival’s rich history. (Proceeds of the book’s sales support Mountainfilm.)

While there are many free events geared toward this celebration, Saturday’s party is intended as a specific way to thank the community that has given it so much over four decades, said Executive Director Sage Martin. The party takes place from 7-10 p.m. and will feature music by DJ Kat V.

“It’s free and open to the public as a way to give back to the community that has supported and loved Mountainfilm for the past 40 years,” she said.

Martin says the goal for the next four decades of Mountainfilm is to continue to do what it does best: Put on an intimate hometown event that lights a fire of inspiration under its audience.

“I want Mountainfilm to be the locals’ favorite festival for years to come,” she said.

As cofounder, Tejada-Flores wrote for Dalton’s book, “Telluride was made for Mountainfilm, and Mountainfilm was made by Telluride, in many ways, large and small.”

For more details or a full schedule, visit mountainfilm.org or download the festival’s app.

New & Notable Properties for Sale | May 2018

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From an inviting modern home in London, England to a Caribbean masterwork by renowned architect Marco Aldaco in Turks and Caicos, this month’s collection of exceptional propertiesfor sale feature homes from some of the world’s finest locales.

London, England | Emma Reade & Aree RandUnited Kingdom Sotheby’s International Realty

Classic and charming neo-Georgian architecture meets the finest modern interior design set on one of the most exclusive roads within one of the most exclusive postcodes in London. This beautiful home set over five floors of luxurious and generously proportioned accommodation enjoys a south-facing front that leads to a reception room and dining area following on to a contemporary kitchen with integrated state-of-the-art appliances looking out onto the beautifully landscaped gardens.

Upper West Side, New York | Michael SiegerSotheby’s International Realty – West Side Manhattan Brokerage

One of only three townhouses remaining on Central Park West, this thoroughly restored Queen Anne mansion affords luxurious modern living while paying homage to its distinguished past. The eye-catching façade is distinguished by an ornamental gate and restored museum-quality sandstone carvings. The grandeur of late-19th-century Manhattan fills the versatile interior, which has been updated with an open, airy ambience and 21st-century technologies and amenities.

Kailua, Hawaii | Brandon E Kim & Myra BrandtList Sotheby’s International Realty

Kai Moena, “House of the Resting Sea,” is a captivating oceanfront estate that reflects the skillful merging of modern architecture and luxury design. Inspired by Hawaii’s culture and climate, this expansive property totals almost 60,000 square-feet of land with over 250 linear feet of pristine white sand once owned by the storied Rothschild family.

Providenciales, Turks And Caicos | Nina Siegenthaler, Turks & Caicos Sotheby’s International Realty 

Bajacu is a Caribbean masterwork, designed by renowned, Architectural Digest Top 100 Architect, Marco Aldaco who is known for his technical mastery of scale, color, and materials. Bajacu (“rising sun” in the language of Caribbean natives) sits proudly above the beautiful island of Providenciales, Turks and Caicos. The ultra-private six-bedroom estate is situated on one of the island’s highest points, on an over eight-acre south shore site, with breathtaking views of the Caicos Banks.

Discover New & Notable homes from around the world on sothebysrealty.com

Sotheby’s International Realty Achieves $108 Billion in Global Sales Volume for 2017

112 Autumn Lane, Mountain Village, Telluride, CO.

Sotheby’s International Realty Affiliates LLC reported that in
2017 its affiliated brokers and sales professionals achieved approximately $108 billion USD in global
sales volume, the highest annual sales volume performance in the history of the brand.

“In 2017 we witnessed the expansion of the global economy,” said Philip White, president and chief
executive officer, Sotheby’s International Realty Affiliates LLC. “The Sotheby’s International Realty®
brand is in 69 countries worldwide, so we were well-positioned to both contribute to and benefit from that
growth. The success of the global economy, coupled with our strategic goals, yielded outcomes better
than we could have ever anticipated in 2017. We look forward to carrying that strength into the new
year.”

Global Growth
The Sotheby’s International Realty brand also reported growth across its global network. At year-end, the
network totaled nearly 950 offices and approximately 22,000 sales associates worldwide.
In the United States, the Sotheby’s International Realty brand achieved over $96 billion USD in sales
volume in 2017 and added six independently owned and operated residential real estate firms to its
network and 58 new offices. This past year witnessed continued significant growth by the brand’s existing
affiliate companies through talent attraction as well as mergers and acquisitions, most notably increasing
the brand’s market presence in the San Francisco Bay Area; Castle Rock, Colorado; and in Southern
Florida and Key West. The brand also entered several key new markets last year, namely: Roseville,
California; Avalon and Stone Harbor, New Jersey; the Central and Western Adirondacks regions of New
York; Greater Greenville, South Carolina; and southeast Wisconsin.

Outside the United States, the Sotheby’s International Realty brand achieved over $12 billion USD in
sales volume in 2017 while continuing to expand into key markets. In Europe, the brand grew its
presence in Spain into the coastal cities of Valencia and San Sebastián, and in Belgium to Antwerp and
Waterloo, as well as expanding to the Greek island of Rhodes. The brand also sold the rights to the Asian
countries of Vietnam, Indonesia and Sri Lanka to establish a future presence, and grew within India to
include the key markets of Mumbai, Bengaluru, Chennai, Pune, Goa and Kolkata

Reaching the Consumer
The Sotheby’s International Realty brand website, sothebysrealty.com, saw another record year with
nearly 27 million visits, a 25% increase year-over-year, with 60% of visitors coming from outside the
United States and 17.5% of traffic being from new users.
An exclusive alliance with the Nikkei, the most influential news publication in Japan, was launched in
2017. The alliance enables the brand to generate Japanese buyer interest through the Nikkei’s digital
platform which reaches over 29 million monthly readers. The Sotheby’s International Realty brand is the

first real estate brand to present property listings outside of Japan to readers of the Nikkei, giving Japanese
consumers access to residential real estate offerings in nearly 70 countries and territories.

“In 2017, the brand launched a dedicated effort to establish meaningful connections with the emerging
affluent consumer,” said Kevin Thompson, chief marketing officer, Sotheby’s International Realty
Affiliates LLC. “Data from sothebysrealty.com indicates that we are already well-positioned among this
demographic, showing that nearly half of the traffic coming to the site was from the 25-to-44-year-old age
group. As personalization has begun its reign over the luxury mindset, the consumer journey has also
experienced a shift; it is our mission, as a preeminent luxury residential real estate brand, to continue to
identify and execute new and authentic ways to connect with discerning clients.”

Additional Achievements
In 2017, the Sotheby’s International Realty brand added to its senior leadership team. Thompson was
appointed as the brand’s Chief Marketing Officer to oversee the marketing, advertising, and public
relations initiatives worldwide. With an extensive background working with globally recognized luxury
brands, Thompson set forth early in the year to create exceptional consumer experiences through the
strategic use of marketing and branding. Later in the year, Julie Leonhardt-LaTorre, a proven global real
estate and management leader, was appointed Chief Operating Officer to spearhead strategic growth plans
for the brand.

The Sotheby’s International Realty brand’s affiliated companies and sales associates raised more than
$500,000 USD for New Story, the brand’s charitable partner and a certified 501(c)(3) non-profit
organization, by the end of 2017. The funds raised will go directly to the construction of new homes in
Mexico. The highlight of the partnership came at the brand’s Global Networking Event, where affiliates
of the Sotheby’s International Realty brand pledged funds for over 150 homes in just 32 hours.

The Sotheby’s International Realty brand was the No. 1 real estate brand represented in two of the six
categories that comprise the 2017 REAL Trends/The Wall Street Journal “The Thousand” for the second
year in a row. The brand claimed 46 of the top 250 sales associates in the REAL Trends Individual Sales
Volume category, more than any other real estate brand, and had the highest combined individual sales
volume from sales associates in the same category. In addition, the Sotheby’s International Realty brand
had the most individuals represented in the Individual Average Sales Price category.

Sotheby’s International Realty listings are marketed on the sothebysrealty.com global website. In
addition to the referral opportunities and widened exposure generated from this source, each brokerage
firm and its clients benefit from an association with the Sotheby’s auction house and worldwide Sotheby’s
International Realty marketing programs.

Bloomberg Markets: Why High-Flying U.S. Home Prices Seen Getting Another Jolt

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The U.S. housing market’s storyline for the last several years has been one of steady demand and limited supply, pushing prices ever higher. Now, a new chapter has opened up for the industry and its customers: soaring costs for building materials.

Reports on Tuesday underscored both resilient purchase activity and accelerating home prices. The S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller index showed property values in 20 major U.S. cities climbed 6.8 percent in February, the biggest year-over-year gain since June 2014. Government data revealed a faster-than-projected rate of new-home sales in March and huge upward revisions to the prior two months.

Inventories of previously owned homes are plumbing the lowest levels in at least 19 years, a key reason why resilient demand by itself has fueled price appreciation that’s extending to the new-homes market. Now, with the costs of lumber and other building materials soaring together, buyers are unlikely to see any relief for some time.

In fact, builders such as PulteGroup Inc., Lennar Corp. and KB Home have indicated they are having success passing along construction costs and signaled margins will remain in good shape going forward.

“There is pressure on a few of the commodities and we are all dealing with some of the labor pressures that have been in the news. So we expect that you’ll continue to see some pressure. And in the first quarter, we were able to outpace the cost pressure with price.”
— Jeffrey Mezger, CEO at KB Home, on March 22 earnings call

“There is inflationary pressure on commodities. The good news is that we’ve seen a market that’s allowed us to price to cover most of that.”
— Robert O’Shaughnessy, CFO at Pulte, on April 24 earnings call

The cost of materials is important because everything from the laying the foundation to framing to painting represents the largest share of a typical single-family home purchase, according to an annual survey by the National Association of Home Builders.

What Our Analyst Says

For homebuilders, rising construction costs are definitely the biggest headache at the moment (and have been for much of the cycle). In the near-term, builders will be able to raise prices to offset material cost inflation. You may see some whose average selling prices are slowing, but that’s primarily due to mix, while ‘like-for-like’ pricing has improved across much of their footprint. A lot of that has to do with a lack of supply.

— Drew Reading, U.S. homebuilding analyst, Bloomberg Intelligence

The framing of homes, or putting up roofs and walls, accounts for 15 percent of the cost of construction. A composite measure of the cost of lumber for framing rose 16 percent from December to March, according to data from Random Lengths, a publisher of information on wood products.

And it’s not just lumber. A Labor Department gauge of prices paid at the producer level for construction inputs — everything from particleboard and plumbing to concrete and insulation — was up 5.1 percent in March from a year earlier, the biggest annual advance in nearly eight years.

So far, neither higher home prices or a four-year high in mortgage costs have been enough to dissuade buyers. Results of the Conference Board’s consumer confidence index on Tuesday showed 1.7 percent of the group’s respondents in April planned to purchase a new home in the next six months, matching the highest share in this expansion.

Helping shape that pickup is a larger share of Americans who say that now is a good time to buy because prices aren’t going to fall any time soon. Sixteen percent of consumers surveyed by the University of Michigan in March said that homebuying conditions were “good” considering asking prices won’t get any better.

At some point, affordability will become a bigger issue for those wanting to own a home. So far though, consumers are taking higher home prices in stride and builders remain relatively upbeat about the market’s prospects.

Eco-Friendly Homes You Could Own

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Conscious living goes far beyond everyday sustainable practices. You can absolutely recycle, compost, and switch to an electric vehicle, but at the end of the day, eco-friendly living means supporting designers, builders, and manufacturers going the extra mile to incorporate earth-friendly materials and operations into their homes. Just in time for Earth Day, these luxurious eco-friendly houses really pay it forward.

Haiku, Hawaii, United States

Mino McLean & Sam Utley– Island Sotheby’s International Realty

This Hawaiian retreat offers up a slice of the good life for both its inhabitants and the planet. A 1,152-square-foot aquaponic greenhouse makes farm-to-table living a reality, while the four-bedroom main house and accompanying cottage are powered by photovoltaic systems complete with two Tesla Powerwall backup batteries. A forest full of fruit trees, grounds abounding with free-range chicken and ducks, and an established beehive designate this property an organic oasis.

Rancho Santa Fe, California, United States

Jenna DaleyCriss Crozier, & Andrea Gilbert– Pacific Sotheby’s International Realty

A true Mexican-style ranch, this custom compound abounds with entertaining spaces and indoor-outdoor living areas that truly make use of the temperate California climate. Across 15,000 square feet of single-story living, you’ll find reclaimed wood in the saloon, a hand-hammered tin ceiling in the theatre, and Spanish-influenced decor. This home pairs classic influences with contemporary eco-design: outside, drought-resistant plants are a thoughtful water-saving feature, and the main residence draws its power from two sets of solar panels.

Amandara, Terres Basses, St. Martin

Lesley Reed– St. Martin Sotheby’s International Realty

Panoramic ocean views and open-plan living get an environmental boost from an extensive solar system, graywater system, rainwater storage, and Energy Star appliances at this gorgeous St. Martin villa. Located on a bluff on the French side of the island, you can enjoy spectacular vistas from the infinity pool, outdoor terrace, or from one of the villa’s open-air baths.

Braganca Paulista, São Paulo, Brazil

Bossa Nova Sotheby’s International Realty

The enviable modern design of this São Paulo property could easily draw attention away from its redeeming eco-innovations: automation technology, an artesian well, a sprinkler system, solar heating for the pool, water filters, and an energy generator keep this condominium an off-grid masterpiece. The house integrates natural landscaping as well, placed on the edge of a preserved forest area and a neighboring vineyard.

Hietzing, Vienna, Austria

Dali Shoval– Austria Sotheby’s International Realty

Situated in one of Vienna’s most popular areas, this Hietzing townhouse has been newly built with eco-tech as a top priority. Integrations include solar batteries to cover heating, water, and the swimming pool; a gas boiler; EIB/KNX installations; rolling shutters; triple insulation controlled ventilation; and fan coil air conditioning. Light is used precisely across four floors in fantastic contemporary style. A rooftop terrace offers 360-degree views of the city.

Finca Los Rosales, Malaga, Spain

Elena de Miguel– Kristina Szekely Sotheby’s International Realty

Artful harmony with nature rules this Malaga home. Marble, Iroko wood, and stainless steel are interspersed throughout, while the pool, under-floor heating, and water systems are powered by solar energy. Double-glazed windows manage sun exposure and an eco-smart cleaning system ensures the garden pool is always well maintained. Mountain views; incredible grounds dotted with fruit trees, olive oaks, and mature gardens; and a contemporary design capped off by a gorgeous architectural steel and glass stairway make this home a must-see.

Papeete, Tahiti, French Polynesia

Jacques Menahem– French Polynesia Sotheby’s International Realty

Four levels of sublime mountainside architecture are complemented by natural ferns and palms, solar panels, a vegetated roof terrace, and ample outdoor deck space. Inside, nature is reflected throughout the concrete, wood, and complementary greenery. Take a dip in the lap pool or just relax and lose yourself in the vast openness of this property while still feeling perfectly at home.

Menorca, Spain

Palma Sales Team– Mallorca Sotheby’s International Realty

Live a country idyll in a tranquil finca equipped with modern upgrades. Central heating, a private well, solar panels, a windmill, and a standby generator keep things running so you can relax by a beautiful stone fireplace, take in the sunset from the patio, or relax in the pool. Wood beams and farmhouse architecture make this home the perfect spot for a traditional siesta, while the property’s farming license will appeal to eco-mindful homesteaders.

Gydnia, Pomeranian, Poland

Poland Sotheby’s International Realty

Watch the sea ebb and flow from a modern penthouse designed with the earth in mind. Business space below cuts commute time while the two-story living space offers respite from busy work days via a scenic terrace and clean, contemporary designs. Solar panels cover water heating, modern glass regulates light, and above-standard insulation warms winter days with little effort so you can focus on enjoying the view.

Ready to do better, every day? Make your eco-initiatives effortless by investing in a home that conserves, integrates, and evolves over time.

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