Archive for the 'Sonoma County Businesses' Category

Local Sonoma County Business Confidence at a Six Year High, Led by Tech Firms

filed under: Market updates, Sonoma County Businesses posted on February 25th, 2013

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Every six months the Sonoma County Economic Development Board releases the results of it’s survey of local business leaders. This winter, confidence is at a six year high–nearly making it all the way back from the very low confidence expressed (not surprisingly) in the winter of 2008. The confidence appears to be strongest in the technology sector, and that probably mirrors the strong tech economy throughout the San Francisco Bay Area. Sonoma County and Bay Area business confidence are outpacing the rest of the US. And guess what, so is our real estate market!

Another marker of business optimism is the Economic Development Board’s Purchasing Trends Index which was 70 this winter
making this the second year that Sonoma County has scored higher than the United States Index since 2007. This indicates that business feel less economically challenged operating in Sonoma County than in the US as a whole. Any score above 50 indicates that Sonoma County’s economy is expanding.

Here is a link to the Full Report, which breaks out the numbers by industry. Overall the business outlook in the county is much stronger coming out of this recession compared to the rest of the US than it was going in to the recession. In the past Sonoma County was seen as a less favorable business environment but the cost of doing business here has declined and business growth is looking favorable for 2013. This can only bode well for our real estate market. Now we just need more inventory of homes to sell!

posted by Pam Buda // 2 Comments »

Wine Country and Technology Team up to Drive Sonoma County Economic Growth in 2013

filed under: Market updates, Sonoma County Businesses posted on December 22nd, 2012

The Sonoma County Harvest Fair Wine Competition, courtesy of Williamson Wines in Healdsburg

This morning I received the newly released Sonoma County Economic Development Board study of the Sonoma County economy, prepared by Moody’s Analytics, a national economic research firm.

Technology, led by the many medical device manufacturers in Sonoma County, wine and tourism (the wine country part) are strengthening and are expected to lead Sonoma County to grow faster than the state and national averages in the second part of 2013. These are all encouraging signs for a real estate market that continues to strengthen, and where values are at long last rising. Now all we need are more homes listed for sale! Now is not too soon to begin planning to sell or buy in 2013. Please email or call me with your questions, after New Year’s Day. We are taking a short break now and look forward to working with you in 2013. Happy New Year!

And take a peak at the report below, it has some interesting graphs and analytics. It likes back to my document collection at, where I have also posted the latest home sales statistics for the Sonoma County market through November 2012.

Sonoma County Economic Development Report



posted by Pam Buda // Comments Off on Wine Country and Technology Team up to Drive Sonoma County Economic Growth in 2013

Want to Get to Know Sonoma County? There's an app for that!

filed under: Sonoma County Businesses, Wine Country Living posted on February 10th, 2010

Yesterday the Sonoma County Tourism Bureau released version 1.0 of an iPhone app promoting local wineries, restaurants, hotels, spas and more, from your iPhone. It is sort of like a private label version of Yelp dedicated to all things Sonoma County. It has a handy wine finder for example which lets you select a varietal–let’s say Carignane–and then view all the wineries within a certain radius of your location that offer that type of wine.

I already use my iPhone in so many ways when with clients and this tool will be a welcome addition.
So far I have used the iPhone out on location

to show maps, routes, and traffic
to take pictures and videos
to show pictures and videos from listings
to determine the orientation of a home with the compass
to send and search emails and review contract documents
to locate and make lunch reservations
to view the multiple listings,
to make blog posts or Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook updates
do calculations and more.

Now I can quickly point out what wineries are in range of a given weekend home, point out the latest upcoming tasting event or festival, recommend hotels, etc. I am not a golfer but this app finds all the golf courses within radius of a give property. It looks pretty good for a start and takes advantage of the iPhone environment. Check it out!

Visit Sonoma? There's an App for that!

posted by Pam Buda // Comments Off on Want to Get to Know Sonoma County? There's an app for that!

Tropical Dreaming-a new design project in Hawaii by Wright-Simpkins, Inc.

filed under: Sebastopol, Sonoma County Businesses, Wine Country Living posted on December 28th, 2009

Many of my friends and clients are entrepreneurs and small business owners in the community. From time to time in 2010 I plan to showcase them so that you can learn about some unique and vital services to Sonoma County and beyond.

Christian Wright and Gerald Simpkins were friends and fellow Vizsla owners long before they became clients in 2003 when we found them an astonishing 1915 farmhouse on acreage in Sebastopol, since lovingly restored. We sold their charming cabin in Guerneville near the Russian River so that they and their dogs would have more room to roam, and also to be closer to their full-time home in San Francisco, where they ran a successful interior design business, Wright-Simpkins, Inc., serving clients all over the United States.

Gerald and Christian have progressed along a path somewhat typical of second home owners in Sonoma County. At first they left San Francisco on Friday evenings and returned home Sunday afternoon. Eventually Friday reverted to Thursday and Sunday became Monday, stretching the weekend to nearly four days. Holidays meant two week stays whenever possible and they became increasingly involved in the community of Sebastopol and Sonoma County. The house had already had some extensive restoration by the previous owners and Gerald and Christian took it and the grounds to the next levels, so much so that the house and gardens have twice been featured on the West County Garden tour sponsored every year by Food for Thought in Forestville.

In 2008, Gerald and Christian decided to move to Sonoma County full time, and sold their home in San Francisco. The recently opened a small studio and shop in Sebastopol at 2833 Old Gravenstein Highway on the way to downtown Sebastopol. If you care to stop by and visit, you might call first, to 707 829-9177 to make sure they are in.

Oh, and in their spare time in 2009, they neared completion of a project in Kohala on the Big Island of Hawaii. If you, like I, are thinking of tropical weather these winter days, take a look!

posted by Pam Buda // Comments Off on Tropical Dreaming-a new design project in Hawaii by Wright-Simpkins, Inc.