There used to be a tagline on Technorati that went, “55 million blogs, some of them have to be good.” We were somewhat comforted by that statement as we began to expand Sweet Digs, our local real estate blog, from Seattle to the Bay Area to Los Angeles, Orange County and San Diego. In only a year and a half, Sweet Digs had produced over 4,500 posts covering the West Coast. Some of them had to be good – and they were (so our readers tell us). Now we’re bringing Sweet Digs clear across the country to see if some of that New England win streak rubs off on us.
So we’ve hired a motley crew of real estate addicts to start covering Boston and Washington, D.C. neighborhoods. They are IT professionals, college professors, and broadcast journalists who moonlight as Redfin bloggers so they can write about whether prices have gotten out of hand or not.
One blogger is certain that when it comes to neighborhoods, up-and-coming is preferable to old-money-stagnant. I mean, who would want to live next to John Kerry or Jack Welch?
Another blogger beckons, no, dares you to abandon D.C.’s city life for the suburbs of Maryland.
It’s a good start and we promise it will get better. Get Sweet Digs delivered to your inbox by subscribing to the newsletter. If you have any feedback for us or tips on properties that you’d like our bloggers to cover send a message to tips(at)redfin(dot)com. We can even promote your open house on our blog, whether you’re a Redfin customer or not.
Let’s meet the Sweet Digs Boston team.
Alyk resides in what she considers the greatest city in the world: Boston. As a cheerleader for the city, she’s learned to love, or at least appreciate, all things Boston, including impassible traffic, cold weather, and bad attitudes. Alyk loves celebrity gossip, and, somehow, she turned that love into a career. She wrote her first daily column for Suicide Girls in 2005, then quickly moved to A Socialite’s Life and Celebrity Baby Blog. Alyk also operates several websites of her own, including CelebWarship, MusicWarship, and the soon-to-be-launched BostonWarship. When Alyk isn’t enjoying the cozy, blue glow of her monitor, she tries to take advantage of city life. Exploring her favorite neighborhoods for hours at a time, she often wonders why anyone would choose to live elsewhere.
Cosmo Catalano hails from the far west of Our Fair Commonwealth, where red-blooded Massachusetts residents pronounce their Rs (but are a bit lazy with their intervocalic Ts). By day, he strives tirelessly to save the world by exposing the horrific inefficiencies of car-based culture; by night he does whatever he possibly can to afford living in places where he won’t need to drive. Though the urban environment does occasionally grate against his rural-bred sensibilities, Cosmo admits that being able to walk from bank to the bar is pretty freakin’ convenient.
Mike Martin is a Professor in the Rhetoric Program at Babson College in Wellesley, Massachusetts, as well as a scribbler of literary fiction. He’s also a real-estate nut – “My friends call me ‘the land baron’ when I start to bend their ears about real estate.” When he’s not looking for free stuff for the house on Freecycle or Craig’s List, he’s obsessed by home improvement, gardening and cooking. Mike’s specific interest in real estate has a lot to do with the way young people in the Boston area cling to neighborhoods that “…bleed them dry. We have a friend who just looked at a 200 sq. ft. flat in Cambridge for $179,000! You can have a real condo for that kind of money in Salem or Beverly. And you can have a sweet little house, blocks from the best commuter rail service in the region, for a little more.” Watch Mike’s blog for information about what’s going on in the Beverly/Salem market, tips about how to save money while you’re moving or moving in, notes about green gardening and home improvements, and the occasional gourmet recipe.
Pamela Reynolds is a writer and painter, formerly a reporter and editor, who begins her days with a little bit of stretching, a fresh cup of coffee, and a quick review of the latest MLS listings. She knows it’s not normal and has therefore decided to make use of her obsession by becoming a real estate blogger. She is, however, currently trying to quit the Open House habit. (It’s the fifth time she’s tried to quit.) Pamela lives in Boston in a 100-year-old building with a dog, cat, and a husband who indulges her property fixation. She has lived in both the United States and Europe and has owned real estate in both places. She enjoys dog walks, movies and knocking down load-bearing walls whenever she can for more light.
Margaret Sanford grew up in Cambridge but has been living in Somerville since 1997. Since her original move to Somerville ten years ago, she has purchased 2 condos, been a landlord, sold a condo and bought a single family using in a 1031 exchange. She bit her nails for almost all of 2005 when the market tanked and her beautiful, historical condo sat on the market for nearly a year before it finally sold. She’s also been through a near gut renovation of her current (and hopefully) permanent residence. She was lucky enough to come through this construction project with her marriage completely intact and still speaks very fondly of her contractor.
When she’s not blogging for Redfin or working at her IT job, she is frequently seen chasing her children (2 and 4) around Somerville and Cambridge.