Brady and Son Realty

A Real Estate Team from Keller Williams Silicon City

Fulfilling Dreams, one Home at a Time.

Whether you are selling, buying, or investing, our goal is to meet your Real Estate needs so well that you recommend us to your family and friends.

2221 Oakland Road #268, San Jose, CA 95131

Phone: 408-868-8052

Buying Your Dream Vacation Home Without Sacrificing The Relaxation of Retirement

This guest blog comes from Jim McKinley, a retired banker and author of “Money with Jim” who now offers his services for free to those who need them*. Reach him through his website or jim@moneywithjim.org

Buying a vacation home is a wonderful way to reward yourself during retirement. But it can be a bit confusing as well. Purchasing a home, keeping up your property and settling in can cause a bit of tension, but it doesn’t have to. If you are looking to buy a new vacation home, here are some basic tips to get you off to the right start, without causing a lot of stress:

 Using Online Resources to Research Properties   

If you have a good idea of areas you are interested in, you can easily start your search online. Researching vacation properties in your desired area will give you the opportunity to see what’s available and what amenities you are likely to find. You can also get a better estimate of home values in your desired vacation areas. For example, in the San Jose, California, area, homes typically sell for $1.1 million. While you are online, look into the neighborhoods and attractions nearby as well — the Monterey Bay is less than an hour drive. Access to wineries, gourmet grocery stores, recreational activities, and quality restaurants could influence your decision to buy a second home.

Maintaining Your Property From Afar   

Once you have settled on a vacation home, you will need to think about how you will maintain it while you are away. Many second homeowners will want to hire a caretaker or property management company to attend to their property while they are away. This ensures that someone local is checking in on your home, attending to issues and available for emergencies when you are not around. In many cases, caretakers can stay in your home while paying you a little rent, giving you peace of mind for your property and a little extra income, too. Caretakers tend to tasks such as cleaning, repairs and landscaping work. If you plan on spending winters in your new vacation home, make sure you take steps to winterize your home before you begin your travels to warmer weather.

Ensuring Home Security and Safety  

In addition to maintenance and cleaning, you need to make sure your property is secure, when you are there and when you are away. If your vacation home is not already equipped with a home security system, consider having one installed. Choose an option that includes home monitoring, break-ins and fires, so that you know emergency services will be called even when you are not nearby. You will also want to take basic security steps, such as installing new deadbolt locks, motion-sensing lights and lockable windows, to keep yourself and your valuables safe from possible break-ins.

If you have a pool, make sure fences are secure, proper signage is posted and your pool is properly covered when not in use, to keep your pool safe while you are at home or away from your property.

Connecting With Your New Community   

Now that your home is purchased, set up and secured, it’s worth your time to get to know your new town, and the people in it. Take some time to get to know neighbors, since they can be a valuable resource for keeping your property secure. Connecting with neighbors also helps retirees create a network of support, which comes in handy if you ever need help or even some company, while you are staying in town. You should also get out and explore your community.

Circumventing Financial Strain

The decision to purchase a second home should not be one made in haste. Adding a second mortgage when you’re already tight financially will only add stress. Before you begin your dream home search, make sure you can afford it. Calculate your income, assets, and outgoing expenses and use an online calculator to define an affordability range. When it’s time to pull the trigger, research your mortgage options, with the understanding that a second home loan will likely cost you more — including more of a down payment — than a first home. Most importantly, don’t over-borrow and make sure to partner with a realtor who knows the area in which you’d like to relax and rejuvenate.

For homeowners who purchase vacation homes in San Jose or Northern California, you have a vast array of activities and attractions nearby. From the wineries in Napa Valley to breathtaking views in Yosemite, there is something for everyone. Adventure is only a car ride, train trip or bus tour away from your new vacation home.

A vacation home is the perfect way to have the best of both worlds in retirement. You’ll have a permanent spot to enjoy an area you love, while being able to return to the comforts of your own home. So take some time to find the right spot and then spend time enjoying your retirement. You deserve it.

Photo Credit: Pixabay

* Brady and Son Realty Team offers no warranty or other guaranty of services offered by guest authors. Prospective users of such services are encouraged to use all due diligence in evaluating any claims made.

Home Decor Trends to Watch in 2018

We frequently get questions from clients who are taking on decorating and remodeling projects and want to ensure their dollars are invested wisely.

Which looks will last for years to come, and which ones will feel dated quickly? What colors and styles are most popular among buyers in our area? How can I add the most value to my home?

So we’ve rounded up some of the hottest trends in home design to help guide you through the process. Whether you’ve planned a simple refresh or a full-scale renovation, making smart and informed design choices will help you maximize your return on investment … and minimize the chance of “remodeler’s remorse” down the road.

What's Hot Now

While 2017 was all about millennial pink, brass fixtures and bright white kitchens, this year we expect to see a move toward warmer, cozier elements throughout the home.

1. Warm Colors

A cool color scheme has dominated home design in recent years, but this year warm neutrals like brown and tan are back, along with rich jewel tones. While the pastel craze of last year is still hanging on, expect to see alternative color palettes featuring deep, saturated shades of red, yellow, green and navy. Grey will remain popular, but in warmer tones, often referred to as “greige.”

2. Cozy Elements

Along with warmer colors, we can expect to see a shift from stark, modern design to cozier looks. Velvet upholstery, woven textures and natural elements, like wood and stone, will heat things up this year.

3. Mixed Metals

It used to be considered gauche to mix finishes, however the look of mixed metals will be very big in 2018. Brass will continue to trend, along with matte black and classics like polished chrome and brushed nickel.

4. Bold Patterns

Expect to see a lot of bright, bold patterns in the form of geometric shapes and graphic floral prints. These will be featured on everything from furniture to throw pillows to tile.

5. Natural Elements

Look for the use of natural elements throughout the home, including wood, stone, plants, flowers and grass. Botanical patterns will also be seen in prints, wallpaper and upholstery. Concrete accents will complement these additions in an effort to bring the essence of the outdoors inside the home.

6. Feature Walls

Also called an accent wall, a feature wall is one that exhibits a different color or design than the other walls in the room. Expect to see an increased use of feature walls showcasing rich paint colors, bold patterned wallpaper, and textures brought in through millwork and shiplap.

7. Statement Lighting

Lighting will take center stage with distinctive fixtures, including local artisan and vintage pendants and chandeliers. And smart lighting technology will enable homeowners to customize their lighting experience based on time of day, activity and mood.

8. Hardwood Floors

Hardwood floors will continue to dominate the market. The trend is toward either very dark stains paired with light-colored walls or light stains with darker walls. Greyish tones will remain popular, as will matte finishes, which are easier to maintain than high gloss. Expect to see frequent use of wider and longer wood planks, as well as distressed and wire-brushed finishes, which add texture and dimension.

9. Smart Homes

Everything is getting “smarter” in homes, from locks and lights to thermostats and appliances. And with devices like Google Home and Amazon Alexa, you can control many of these with voice activation from a central hub. We will see continued integration of and advancements in smart-home technology in 2018.


While white kitchens will remain popular in 2018, expect to see more color this year in everything from cabinets to tile to appliances.

1. Two-toned Cabinets

Two-toned cabinets are quickly overtaking the white-on-white look that has dominated kitchen design for the past few years. While white remains a classic, grey and bleached-wood cabinet variations are surging in popularity, along with darker neutrals like navy and green

2. Quartz Countertops

Granite reigned as the top countertop choice for many years, but quartz is now king. It’s highly durable, low-maintenance and comes in a wide variety of styles and colors. It’s also heat resistant, scratch resistant and non-porous (unlike granite and marble) so it doesn’t need to be sealed.

3. Bold Backsplashes

After years of dominating backsplash design, the white subway tile is officially on its way out. Expect to see it replaced with more elaborate shapes, patterns, colors and textures. Tile that mimics the appearance of wood, concrete and wallpaper is also gaining in popularity.

4. Statement Sinks

While stainless steel and white porcelain are always safe bets, the trend is moving toward sinks that make more of a statement. Look for unexpected pops of color and materials like natural stone and copper. Touch-free faucets are expected to gain favor with homeowners this year, too.

5. Brass is (Still) Back

Brass fixtures came back in a big way over the past couple of years and will continue to be a popular choice in 2018 along with matte black, black nickel, polished chrome and brushed nickel. Missing from the list? Rose gold, which is decidedly “out” this year.

6. Multi-purpose Islands

Kitchen islands have evolved from simple prep-stations into the “workhorse” of the kitchen. Many feature sinks, built-in appliances and under-counter storage while also serving as a casual dining area. They have become the focal point of the kitchen, and we expect to see more of them in 2018 and beyond.

7. Black Stainless Steel

Black stainless steel is the hot new finish option for appliances, and it’s hitting the market in a big way. It offers a cutting-edge look and is easier to keep clean than traditional stainless steel. However, it’s harder to match finishes amongst different brands, so it’s probably only feasible as part of a complete appliance package.

8. Appliance Garages

Appliance garages are counter-level compartments designed to house small appliances like blenders, toasters and stand mixers. They make it convenient to have these items readily accessible, without the look of a cluttered counter.


Expect to see many of the same kitchen design preferences carry over into bathrooms this year, including two-tone cabinets, quartz countertops and brass fixtures.

1. Neutral Tones

Neutral shades will continue to dominate in the master bathroom as homeowners seek a soothing and relaxing retreat atmosphere. But expect to see more options than just white. Shades of brown, grey, blue, green and tan will help to warm things up.

2. Natural Elements

Natural materials are particularly hot right now in bathroom design. This includes the use of wood and stone on walls, cabinets, counters and backsplashes, as well as the incorporation of botanical design elements.

3. Large Tiles

We expect to see a lot more large and slab-sized tiles in bathrooms, which have less grout so they are easier to clean and maintain. Wood-look porcelain tiles are also a favorite in wet areas, as they offer the warmth and rustic appeal of wood with the durability of tile.

4. Stone Sinks

Sinks will continue to be an area where homeowners like to exhibit creativity, and hand-carved stone sinks are especially fashionable right now. These may be more suited to powder rooms, where functionality isn’t as crucial.

5. Freestanding Tubs

There’s been a tub resurgence in bathroom design after years of preference for stand-alone showers. Modern tastes are gravitating toward freestanding tubs that serve as a showpiece for the bathroom.

6. Smart Features

Smart technology has entered the bathroom with the addition of features like wireless shower speakers and high-tech toilets, as well as digital shower controls that automatically adjust to your preferences in temperature and spray intensity.


Style trends come and go, so don’t invest in the latest look unless you love it. That said, highly-personalized or outdated style choices can limit the appeal of your property for resale.

For major renovation projects, it’s always a good idea to stick to neutral colors and classic styles. It will give your remodel longevity and appeal to the greatest number of buyers when it comes time to sell. It will also give you flexibility to update your look in a few years without a total overhaul. Use non-permanent fixtures – like paint, furniture and accent pieces – to personalize the space and incorporate trendier choices.

And if you anywhere where the overnight temperature drops below 50 degrees and are installing tile floors, particularly on slab foundations, consider including in-floor radiant heating. Your toes will thank you.

 If you’d like advice on a specific remodeling or design project, give us a call! We’re happy to offer our insights and suggestions on how to maximize your return on investment and recommend local shops and service providers who may be able to assist you.


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Original content ©2018, 2019, 2020 Brady and Son Realty Team @ KW Silicon City . Referenced images and data subject to originator copyrights.