Rodeo Realty Managers and Agent Praised by REALTOR® Associations

Paul Stafford

In keeping with Rodeo Realty’s commitment to excellence in the real estate industry, Paul Stafford, manager of the Calabasas office, Diane Sydell, associate manager of the Studio City office, and Liliana Alfonso, an agent at the Studio City office, were recently given accolades for their work with local REALTOR® associations.

Stafford was recognized as an “Outstanding Committee Member” for his work on the Professional Standards Committee of the Southland Regional Association of REALTORS® (SRAR).The California Association of REALTORS® (C.A.R.) also asked Stafford to be one of a handful of ombudsmen to help resolve real estate disputes statewide.

Diane Sydell

SRAR has more than 12,500 members and is one of the largest local REALTOR® associations in the country. C.A.R. is a statewide trade association dedicated to the advancement of professionalism in real estate.

Sydell  was recognized as an “Outstanding Committee Member” for her work on SRAR’s Grievance Committee. She will be vice chair of the committee for 2012, and has been chair of the Grievance Advertising Committee for three years.The committee’s work revolves around fielding complaints against local agents and real estate companies, and determining the best course of action to resolve the issue(s).

Liliana Alfonso

Liliana Alfonso was recognized as an “Outstanding Committee Member” for her work with SRAR’s Housing Committee. She has served on the committee for two years, will serve again in 2012, and is chair of the Equal Opportunity and Cultural Diversity Committee. The Housing Committee hosts seminars throughout the year targeting first time homebuyers, foreclosure prevention, and energy efficiency. Members also organize a number of fundraising efforts. 

Rodeo Realty 2011 Holiday Party Photos

On Saturday December 17, 2011, the annual holiday party for Rodeo Realty, L.A. Mortgage and Encore Escrow took place at the Universal Sheraton in Universal City, California. More than 700 guests attended the event, which included dinner, drinks and a LOT of dancing. Thank you to everybody who hosted, organized, worked at, and attended the party! Here are some photos from the festivities.

A Year of Expansion and Record Production for Rodeo Realty

As we enter the last couple weeks of the year, I thought it would be a good time to reflect about 2011 and all that we have accomplished at Rodeo Realty. It’s safe to say it was a big year for the company. We opened four new offices, welcomed a host of new agents, and logged one of the best years in the company’s history in terms of production.

The year started with the opening of the Sunset Strip office at 9200 Sunset Blvd. in West Hollywood. Westside real estate veteran Fred Henry is managing the office, and has brought on a very talented group of agents.

Sunset Strip Office

At the beginning of June, we opened the new Beverly Hills office at 202 N. Canon Drive in the 90210. John Gould is heading up the office and is working with a great crew of new agents and agents from the old Beverly Hills location. A month later, we hosted a grand opening and wine tasting for the new Calabasas office at 23901 Calabasas Road #1050. Paul Stafford manages the office and continues to hire the best agents in the area.

Beverly Hills Office

Calabasas Office

Rodeo then moved the corporate headquarters from Bel Air to 266 N. Beverly Drive in Beverly Hills -the site of the old Beverly Hills office.  Rodeo Realty’s listings, listings sold, sales, sales volume, and income per agent this year were some of the best in the company’s history, said owner and president Syd Leibovitch.

Desiree Zuckerman
“2011 has been a very good buyer’s year, with interest rates and home prices being so low,” said Desiree Zuckerman of the Calabasas office. “These two factors encouraged anyone who was on the fence to jump off of the fence.
Homes that were reasonably priced sold, adds Zuckerman. People looking to up-size may have sold their old property at a lower price, but they were also able to buy low.
Rodeo Realty’s extensive newspaper advertising in the Los Angeles Times and other publications is a big advantage, said Zuckerman.
“Especially in the West Valley, it feels like 75 percent of the For Sale signs have Rodeo Realty’s name on them,” she said. “We have a huge presence here and the name is becoming more and more prestigious.”
Sunny Yi
The past year was even better than 2010 for Sunny Yi of the Northridge and Beverly Hills offices.
“The volume of sales was down, but I ended up working with a lot of move up clients who bought homes in the million dollar and up range,” said Yi, adding a lot of that business came from contacting old clients and taking them out to dinner.
Rodeo Realty’s graphic design, print and mail departments are a hug
e help.
“I couldn’t do it without the help of graphic designer Tim Egan and print shop manager Deborah Runions,” said Yi. “I work with them a lot, and they are amazing!”
Melissa Zee
Melissa Zee of the Sunset Strip office closed more deals in 2011 than she expected.
“I think the market has picked up quite a bit on the Westside, and there are a lot of investors and all cash buyers out there,” said Zee.
Office manager Fred Henry, and Syd Leibovitch always provide plenty of support, she added, and the new Sunset Strip office is in a great location.
“The Sunset Strip office has a great vibe.”
Congratulations to everybody!

Venice Eco Home by Bridgid Coulter

Interior designer and actor Bridgid Coulter has just completed construction on a newly renovated eco home in Venice, CA. Coulter runs a boutique design studio adjacent to her retail storefront where she carries a signature line of textiles, pillows, eco candles and custom furniture; along with eclectic home accessories in Santa Monica. She did all of the design work on the house.
In addition to her interior design work, Coulter appeared in a number of movies, television shows and theatre in the 1990’s; including Rosewood, Always Outnumbered (with Laurence Fishburne,) A Different World, Family Matters, and Murder She Wrote. Most recently, she will appear in an episode of the new HGTV design show called, “Design Wars” to begin airing December 2011.
She developed the eco house with the support of long term beau, actor Don Cheadle, who was nominated for an Oscar® for his performance in Hotel Rwanda, and has been in a long list of television shows and movies over the years such as Iron Man 2, Traffic, Crash, Oceans 11, Oceans 12 and Oceans 13. Cheadle also serves as UNEP Ambassador for the Environment and is committed to exploring solutions for climate change issues.
The 1,297 square foot, 3 bedroom, 2 bath single-story modern bungalow was originally built in 1953 and has been taken down to stud with responsible debris disposal and recycling methods. The eco renovation and design includes: operational clerestory windows for natural light infusion and air circulation; radiant floor heating; bamboo floors installed with “green” glues; Energy Star gourmet appliances; non VOC interior paints; an eco ethanol fireplace; Greenguard certified countertops, and all built-in cabinetry employs sustainable materials and methods that are FSC certified and do not off-gas.
The roof of the home is pre-piped for solar installation. The professionally landscaped yard includes low water use plants, drip irrigation, recycled concrete walking paths and patios, and raised planters for growing vegetables. The outside of the house uses energy efficient HardiePanel® – a sustainable siding material for buildings.
There will be a reception and discussion at the eco bungalow on Thursday, December 15th from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.  The event will include live music, vegetarian hors d’oeuvres and wine.  Project designer, Bridgid Coulter will be on hand to answer questions, along with architectural consultants Todd Erlandson & Nori Fukuda, construction advisor Eric Engheben, landscape designer Annie Wright, and Rhonda Payne of Rodeo Realty. The address is 2494 Glencoe Avenue in Venice, California

Largest Toy Give-Away in the San Fernando Valley

Keyes Automotive Group, Rodeo Realty, Bruce’s Gourmet Catering, Congressman Brad Sherman and Others Partner with Hope of the Valley Rescue Mission to put Smiles on Children’s Faces

On Saturday December 17th, starting at 11:00am, Sun Middle School (7330 Bakman Avenue Sun Valley) will be the epicenter of happy children in the San Fernando Valley at the 5th Annual, Keyes Automotive Group Sponsored Great Christmas Toy Give-Away.

Each child who attends will select the toy of their choosing from one of the over 5,000 toys in the school’s cafeteria that will be converted into Santa’s workshop. The majority of toys have been generously donated by Keyes Automotive Group. A delicious fajita lunch, provided by Bruce’s Catering, will be enjoyed by all guests.

Live music and entertainment will fill the air as children have their picture taken with Santa. Kids will also be able to build their own Ginger Bread House compliments of Syd and Linda Leibovitch and Rodeo Realty.

At last year’s event, nearly 6,000 toys were given away to kids in need. “for many of these children, the toy they receive at our event, is the only toy they will receive for Christmas.” says Hope of the Valley Rescue Mission Director Ken Craft.

If you would like to donate a toy or volunteer for the event contact the Mission at 818.392.0020 or

Hope of the Valley Rescue Mission is a non-profit agency committed to providing Hope, Hot Meals, Housing, Health Services and Healing to the Hungry, Homeless and Hurting in the San Fernando Valley.

Rodeo Realty Agents on Good Morning America

In late October, we announced that two of Rodeo Realty’s agents were interviewed by Good Morning America, and that the clip was supposed to run a couple days later. The interviews followed a story in the Los Angeles Times titled “Real estate agents are going all out to sell luxury homes.”

The Times story quoted three Rodeo agents including Lisa Sorrentino, Ben Salem and Ron Tanzman. Good Morning America then interviewed Joe Babajian and Ben Salem the next day. The clip didn’t run a couple days later -that’s how the media world works- but it did air on Good Morning America today.

The spot has some great shots of one of Joe Babajian’s listings, includes interviews with Babajian and Salem, and shows Salem taking clients on helicopter tours of high-end neighborhoods. Check it out:

Thank you to ABC and Good Morning America for putting together a really fun story. Thanks also to all of the agents who were involved in the media coverage.

Brian Bloom Buys Zen Home in Encino Area

Actor, writer and voice over artist Brian Bloom has purchased a home for $1,180,000 in the Encino area.Gary Krieger of Ewing & Associates – Sotheby’s International Realty was the listing agent. Pat Phillips of Rodeo Realty’s Encino office represented the buyer.
Among his credits, Bloom played character Brock Pike in “The A-Team” (2010); Agent Baker in “Smokin’ Aces” (2006); and Young Patsy in the 1984 movie “Once Upon a Time in America.” In addition to acting on screen, Bloom provides voice over work for numerous video games and animated television series.

The gated Zen-style retreat sits high on a private knoll. The one-story house, originally built in 1961, has 2,386 square feet of living space, 3 bedrooms, 4 baths, formal living, dining and breakfast rooms, and den. The remodeled kitchen has stone counters, breakfast bar, glass cabinets, garden window and many newer appliances.

A large master suite has a master bath with travertine tile floors, marble counters and shelf, jetted spa tub, frameless glass doors, and custom cabinetry. All of the bathrooms in the home have been remodeled.

The estate is designed for an indoor-outdoor lifestyle. The grounds were developed by a master Japanese landscape architect over a 30-year period. There are mature trees, waterfall, fountain, deck, and black-bottom pool.

David Schwimmer Selling Hancock Park Home

Actor and director David Schwimmer has placed his Los Angeles area home on the market for $10.7 million. The roughly 11,000 square foot gated and private Mediterranean-style house sits on a 44,540 sq. ft lot in prime Hancock Park.

Schwimmer, who starred on the hit television show “Friends,” recently directed the movie “Trust” with Clive Owen and Catherine Keener.
The home was originally built in 1926 by the architectural firm of Koerner & Gage. The firm also worked with John Austin and Frederick M. Ashley to build Beverly Hills City Hall. The Rindge family was the original owner of the estate. The Rindge family is well-known for owning thousands of acres of land in the Malibu area.
The home has been beautifully restored. The main house features 9 bedrooms, 6 bathrooms, a wood paneled library, a den covered with a stone finish, a new state-of-the-art screening room, a formal dining room, 2 powder rooms, 5 fireplaces and a butler area.
The backyard includes a grand resort-style pool area with manicured grounds, mature landscaping, giant palm trees, spa, north/south tennis court and a pavilion. The detached guest house provides a modern loft experience that accommodates a bedroom, living room, bathroom and kitchen.
Magali Bergher of Westside Estate Agency and Arleen Ruby of Rodeo Realty in Beverly Hills are the listing agents.

Rodeo Realty Proudly Supports Walk of Ages XII

Rodeo Realty proudly supports the Los Angeles Jewish Home’s Walk of Ages XII. The 5K walk/run takes place this year on Sunday December 4th at the Jewish Home’s Eisenberg Village Campus at 18855 Victory Blvd. in Reseda.

Friends, family , co-workers, neighbors and even dogs are encouraged to participate. The Rodeo Realty office with the most participants will win a prize. The event will take place rain or shine.
The annual Walk of Ages event is one of the largest charitable walks in the San Fernando Valley. Proceeds support the Jewish Home’s efforts to provide compassionate care to seniors.
Registration is from 7 a.m. to 8 a.m. on the day of the event, and the opening ceremony from 8:20 a.m. to 8:30 a.m. The 5K walk and run begins at 8: 30 a.m., followed by an awards ceremony from 9:30 a.m. to
10: 30 a.m. There will also be music, free refreshments and prizes for the top fundraisers and participants.
Individual adults need to collect of donate a minimum of $100 to walk or run in the event, seniors need to collect or donate a minimum of $50, families $250, and teams of 10 or more $1,000. People who cannot participate are welcome to make contributions directly to the  Los Angeles Jewish Home.
Visit register and for more information.

To join the Rodeo Realty team, click “Register” on the event home page, then click “I agree” to the event’s terms, click “Join a team,” scroll down to Rodeo Realty in the “Please select a team” box, click “Continue” and complete the registration form. 

Real Estate Upgrades for No Cash Up-Front

Lou Woolf of Rodeo Realty’s Sherman Oaks office recently launched a program to help home sellers upgrade their properties for no cash up-front. Woolf said he has provided this service to probate attorneys for years and is now opening it up to the public.

In a nutshell, Estate P.A.C.T. ( provides sellers with real estate services including: preliminary title reports; market evaluations; property profiles; transaction coordination; and more. The program also helps clients realize top dollar for their properties by offering repair and upgrade work that is billed from escrow disbursement funds.

A sample of upgrades includes:
Painting & drywall / stucco repair
Estate sale & furniture disposition
Shipping of personal items
House cleaning
Debris removal/ hauling
Landscape & garden maintenance
Handyman repairs
Locksmith & security

The program is free of charge to listing clients and the services provided are billed at the regular rate. Woolf said Estate P.A.C.T. has a track record of success in securing higher listing and selling prices after completing the upgrade and repair work.

Estate P.A.C.T. is currently looking for 8-12 home sellers for the program. Prospective clients will have to go through a qualification process. The program does not handle short sale properties and prospective clients need to have equity in their homes. For more information call Lou Woolf at: (866) 692-WOLF.