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July 2008


REAL ESTATE

Deeds & Don'ts
By Lily Oliver and Stacy H. Small

INSIDE STORIES BEHIND AREA REAL ESTATE DEALS

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The Super Models
"Model home," a name given to the fully furnished condo unit in a new complex, used to be an exercise in bland: generic, beige and flavor-free. Today, developers are partnering with local designers for model homes that are a win-win for everyone. Designers gain a showcase for their work, while the new gated communities get gorgeous homes that actually draw traffic. At Palmer Hill in Stamford, for instance, Rowayton designer Lynn Morgan was tapped to design the model residences, now open. Palmer Hill will feature 114 townhouses and 81 condos on 20 acres. In West Hartford, Blue Back Square tapped hot design shop Homeward Bound to decorate everything from its chic dining room to its sexy bedrooms, as seen above.

The Wind Of Change?
In politics, "change" is the word that's capturing the hearts—and votes—of the American people. Change is also sweeping the business world as the music industry scrambles to go digital, media companies gear up to go mobile and Detroit retools toward smaller, lighter and more fuel-efficient vehicles. The housing market—plagued by a perfect storm of tight credit, bloated inventory and consumer wariness—is looking to change its game, too. But the first steps down a new path aren't as obvious as, say, switching production from the Hummer H3 to the Honda Fit. Indeed, realtors have little control over the nature of their "product," the existing homes that come—and sometimes sit—on the market. All that said, good realtors have always been master game-changers. They work for—and largely by—themselves, out in the trenches, dealing directly with buyers and sellers, lenders and lawyers. Put another way: Show us a realtor who sits at a computer all day and we'll show you someone on Monster.com looking for a new career.

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