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FAQs answered by local entrepreneur’s fast-growing company

  • Written by Emily Hamann

Say you’ve just bought the new iPhone, and you’re having trouble transferring all your stuff onto your new phone from your old phone. So you go to Google and search for your problem.

This is where Jason Kaufman’s company Irrevo steps in. Irrevo works with companies to make it easier for customers to find help with their products online, so they don’t have to call the company for help.

“The fewer calls that they get from customers the more money they save,” Kaufman said, “and the happier their customers are.”

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Local artist’s work featured on three TV shows

  • Written by Briana Gerdeman

One local artist’s work has made the jump from an Etsy store to TV, with her work soon to be featured in three TV shows.

Amy Lighthall, a Woodinville resident, has been making contemporary art for two years. She uses paint, pen, charcoal and other media, then scans those designs and edits them on the computer to make patterns.

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Grapeworks Distilling turns wine into vodka

  • Written by Briana Gerdeman

Woodinville is home to a multitude of wine-, beer- and spirits makers, so perhaps it’s only natural that someone would combine two types of alcoholic beverages in an unconventional way.

At Grapeworks Distilling, founders and co-owners Sal Leone and Celeste Larenas-Leone distill wine into vodka. The resulting vodkas, most made from single varietals of grapes, are clean and pure, with a subtle fruity taste.

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Play video games on a smartphone with local company’s controller

  • Written by Emily Hamann

The Woodinville company Bensussen Deutsch and Associates foresees a world where instead of sitting down in your living room to play the latest Call of Duty release, you simply pull out your phone, anywhere, any time.  

“That’s a high powered computer system that you carry around in your pocket,” said James Szubski, director of marketing at BDA. Szubski said the computing power of smartphones surpasses that of handheld gaming devices. So, it makes sense that your iPhone or Android phone can handle a lot more than Candy Crush.

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Real Estate Transitions: Tips on buying new construction

  • Written by By The Blue Team: Michelle Blue & Ashley Farrington, Windermere Woodinville

Thinking about buying a new home? It is a slightly different purchase than residential resale where you need to consider the seller’s emotions and plans, so make sure you plan accordingly and take the right steps to optimize your new home buying experience. Here are just a few tips for you to consider.

Timing: To get the best deal on a new home, pay attention to timing. Builders are businesses and so they are more likely to offer a price reduction, or a “hidden discount” by paying for closing costs or home appliances and upgrades at no charge, in the following situations: (1) end of quarter/end of year closings; (2) homes that are already built or within weeks of completion; (3) first couple homes in a development to get sales started; and (4) last couple homes in a development — when they want to close out the site.

Contracts: Builders require their own contracts, so make sure you understand what is and what isn’t included in the price (appliances, landscaping, decorator options, etc.) as it is much easier to negotiate for items to be included before you enter into the agreement. Warranties can really vary, so know what is and isn’t included and during what time frames and whether it is transferrable to the next owner should you decide to sell during the warranty period.
Inspections: Yes, you should get an inspection on a new home since it is always easier to get repairs done before you close than after — no matter what warranty is offered by the builder. Remember, things can get done incorrectly or be missed with new construction. Here are some potential big-ticket red flags:

•    Sticky doors: If the home is new, it shouldn’t have sticky doors and windows — this can be an indicator of more serious structural problems.
•     Diagonal cracks: Anything more than a hairline crack should be checked out. Straight vertical cracks are more likely to be insignificant than diagonal ones.
• Puddles near the foundation: When it rains, do puddles form against the home’s foundation? This could be a sign of problematic landscape grading that could lead to flooding in your basement or crawl space.

It is also good to do an Internet search for reviews of the builder to see what, if any, recurring problems they have had in other neighborhoods they have built. Make sure your inspector looks for those potential defects on your home.
Want to explore your options? Contact The Blue Team — working twice as hard for you and providing a team of experts to guide you in all your real estate transitions!