Blog Stories It's Kismet

It’s Kismet

By Alyssa Starelli, July 11, 2018

It’s one of the first hot days of May and I’m wandering around Portland Nursery with an obnoxious wagon nipping at my heels, as you do when the impetus to plant vegetables rears its ugly head. It’s a Sunday so the place is packed and I’m wearing a visor (must protect vampire eyes) so I’m not really paying attention nor can I see much,  but I look up and standing in front of me (also looking a bit overwhelmed) is my old scooter buddy and client, Morgan.

I’m not surprised to see Morgan there, he has a background in horticulture and actually designed my back yard. We chat about plants and I glean some free plant advice (sneaky, I know).  Per usual, the convo morphs into talking about their house which I sold them a handful of years ago, and how in the near-ish future, they’re gonna need a bigger one, but not quite yet.  We say our adieus, I drag my selections to the cashier and think to myself, “well that was a nice run-in.”

Fast forward about a day and a half:
I get a call from Morgan and Emily saying there’s a house directly behind them for sale, it’s been on the market for a long time but running into me got them thinking!! (YAY, for thinking I say!!)

They realized it would make a good long-term investment, could be used as an office since they both work from home (Emily’s current office is under-ground, yikes!) or a quiet get-away, maybe even “his and hers” houses? (Haha, just kidding) . But most importantly, it would be a great place for their parents to stay for long snowbird visits to visit grand-daughter Lu, until they’re ready to move into it to “age-in-place”.  Either way, E &M would be doubling their estate and creating the Sapp Family Compound!  Bring on the sister-wives! (joke).

So we wrote, negotiated, inspected and appraised and even showed the house to visiting parents (who loved the choice) and voila, the Sapp Shangri-la is up and running.  Glad I ran into you, Morgan!!

[PHOTO CREDIT: I’d like to give photo credit to budding photographer Lura, who at age 5 snapped this shot of her parents at the new house for me.]

Alyssa Starelli

Broker | OR

A Portland native, Alyssa started her real estate career in the chaotic market of 2005, and quickly realized she reveled in matching particular clients with their perfect home, no matter how unusual. She then began specializing in mid-century properties - both Modern and Modest. More recently, she has included what she calls "Period-Perfect" homes to her repertoire. Her goal in this is to seek out those hard-to-find, unremodeled original homes of all eras. When I started in real estate, I realized there was a market for ranch homes, from Mid-Century Modern to the more modest Daylight Ranch, but few REALTORS® willing to service it. I started highlighting these 'Picks of the Week' on my website, introducing enthusiasts to the full gamut of midcentury houses of Portland. In 2006, I founded the Mid-Century Modern League in order to educate the public about the importance of preserving these gems. Today I continue to focus on Mid-Mod, but have added vintage, mostly unremodeled houses of earlier eras, which I call 'Period-Perfect', because they have interest to clients and are under-serviced too. Frankly, I enjoy seeking out any unusual or original elements a client might be interested in, it's a challenge to rise to." As Founder of the Mid-century Modern League, Alyssa is considered an authority in the local mid-century architecture scene, and is especially proud to include the Editors of Atomic Ranch Magazine in her past-client list. Often quoted in news and radio, she has been able to bring additional interest to her business, listings, and client's homes - many of which have been featured in magazines such as Atomic Ranch, Oregon Home, The Oregonian and also included on several local home tours. With a background in marketing, and an eye for the unique, Alyssa really enjoys buying and selling properties whose interesting features may be overlooked by other realtors, even (or especially) if those features aren't mentioned in the listing. As a hobby, Alyssa has issued herself a challenge to walk every residential street of Portland proper and document the best architecture specimens of each neighborhood. There are about 3500 square miles of Portland, and it's a big feat. By the time she finishes, she will have seen every house in Portland with her own eyes! You can follow her walks on her blog Portland-by-Foot. When off duty, you can find Alyssa at estate sales, honky tonks, her friend's cattle ranch, or seeking out ghost towns, roadtripping to the Oregon high-desert. A music fanatic and semi-retired booker/manager, Alyssa is heavily immersed in the western swing, old-school country, and rockabilly music scene, and you'll often find her out at shows, dancing, maybe even sharing her favorites on the radio. Alyssa Starelli 503-888-1362
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