Coastal Premier Properties Welcomes Back Tracy Sheppard

Coastal Premier Properties is happy to welcome back Tracy Sheppard! She’ll be working out of our Carmel Valley office. After briefly leaving the company to work for another brokerage, Tracy says “I returned because I was promised things at the new company that didn’t actually happen.  I am so happy to be back in a highly professional and supportive environment, non corporate company with exceptional leadership.  I appreciate Amy, Susan, Jim and Rich and how much they invest into all of us agents.  I am so happy to be part of the CPP family, and I will not take it for granted!”. Welcome back!

Tracy Sheppard Welcome.jpg

About Tracy:

Realtor Tracy Sheppard works hard for her clients all over San Diego County. Over several years, she has successfully educated and assisted her clients with buying and selling real estate in one of the most popular living areas in the United States. Tracy is pleased to be able to streamline the buying and selling transactions for clients, helping them to learn and understand how it all happens. She loves working with first time homebuyers, as well as seasoned and experienced home buyers and sellers.

Tracy had a passion for buying and selling homes long before she ever gained her real estate credentials. Her interest and inherent talent for fixing and staging her own homes came in no small part from the ability to work closely with people. “This is the perfect career for me.” Tracy says.”I’ve lived and worked in San Diego for 25 years, and I know the San Diego real estate market inside and out.” Tracy’s lifelong passion for buying and selling homes and her intimate knowledge of the area she calls home is a winning combination

Tracy strives for excellence in everything she does. She holds a Bachelors Degree from Concordia University Irvine, and considers herself a lifelong learner. Constantly trying to learn and never settling for second best, Tracy continuously takes educational courses in order to keep abreast of the latest real estate industry updates. Her tireless hard work ethic, honesty and kindness are evidenced by the amount of referrals that she consistently receives from previous clients. Tracy adds value for every client with her unwavering dedication to customer service.

Tracy’s services include previewing homes and taking videos so that buyers don’t spend time driving to and looking at homes that are not good matches. This is especially appreciated by buyers who are relocating from out of town. Tracy’s keen eye for décor and style come in handy as she offers tips for small home improvement and staging ideas that will help sell the home. Tracy will walk clients through the escrow process, and will negotiate fiercely for her client’s best possible outcome in accordance with their unique needs and desires.

As a resident of Carmel Valley, Tracy involves herself in the leadership of the schools where her own three children have attended from the elementary grades right on through to high school. She’s thoroughly enjoyed coaching youth soccer and volleyball, and embodies community-mindedness and leadership through her service on the boards of the PTA and on the school’s foundation boards.

Tracy’s commitment to her community doesn’t end at the school doors, however. She dedicates much of her personal time to working with a homeless ministry in downtown San Diego, which is organized through her local church.

Realtor Tracy Sheppard will work hard for you, too. Whether you’re looking to buy or sell in San Diego County, Tracy is ready to serve.

Click here to contact Tracy! For more about Coastal Premier Properties, visit our website!


First Time Home Buyer Guide


Making the big move of owning your own home rather than renting can be both extremely exciting and extremely daunting. Having your own yard, enough space to actually feel comfortable, being able to decorate however you please, no shared walls, this list goes on. However, many first time home buyers quickly realize that the process is less navigable than they imagined. That is why we have crafted this guide — to help people not just get through the process, but to do so confidently!

A year before moving

Check your credit score:  Get a copy of your credit report. There are a multitude of ways to do this, some of which are even free! Many people find errors in their credit report upon review, and some of these errors can result in higher loan rates. This is something that is easily avoidable and should be taken care of in beginning of the process.

Determine how much you can afford:  The first step to buying a property is determining what you can afford to buy. It’s a good idea to meet with a qualified lender to determine what you can afford. Lenders look for a debt-to-income ratio of 43% or less or your total income. This includes your future mortgage, car loans, student loans, credit cards, etc. If you’re not quite able to afford the type of property you want to buy, you can start to make a plan.  Create a budget to see what you’re spending your money on every month and start to tailor it towards what your future lifestyle as a homeowner will look like.

Make a downpayment plan: There are various types of mortgages. Typically the more money you can put down for your downpayment, the less you pay in loan costs, including insurance, and you’ll have a lower interest rate. However, with an FHA loan (exclusive to first-time homebuyers) you can put down as little as 3.5% in some cases. As you save, you should note that banks prefer it if you season your money before getting a loan. This means that they like to see stable funds in your accounts for 60-90 days or so before applying for your loan. However you can still use financial gifts or bonuses closer to when you buy.

9 months before moving

Prioritize what you want most in your new home: Unfortunately when buying a home, you usually don’t get every single thing you want. That is why it is very important to pick the things you’d most like to get out of your new home. Maybe you want to be close to work. Or maybe you want a large backyard, a luxurious master bedroom, or even a quiet street. If you’re making this decision with someone else, it is recommended that you figure this stuff out beforehand, to get it out of the way and avoid any surprises down the line. Make sure to know which trade-offs you’re most willing to make.

Research neighborhoods and start visiting open houses: There are many websites you can utilize, such as Trulia and Zillow, to find houses for sale and to see what different areas are like.

Also make sure to go and visit open houses. As useful as online tools may be, they are not a substitute for seeing the real thing. You actually have to go to different areas and look at different houses to get a better idea of what you want and what is in your range. If you see some things that you really like, this may help motivate you even more to reduce debt and save for your down payment!

Budget for miscellaneous homebuying expenses: Buying a new home entails paying for more than just the house itself. A home inspection, title search, property survey, and home insurance are a few examples, and they can really add up. So start saving now.

Start a home maintenance account: Get in the habit of setting aside a little bit of money each month for things like maintenance, repairs, and emergencies. Problems happen, so it’s best if you’re ready for them rather than scrambling at the last moment.


6 months before moving

Collect your loan paperwork: Banks are very particular when it comes to mortgage loans and they demand a lot of paperwork. Some of the things they’ll want include:

  • W-2 forms – usually for the last two to three years
  • Personal tax returns for the past two to three years
  • Your most recent pay stubs
  • Credit card and all loan statements
  • Your bank statements
  • Every place you’ve lived for the past five to seven years
  • Brokerage account statements for the most recent two to four months
  • Most recent retirement account statements, i.e. 401(k)

If you begin to collect these documents early, it’ll ease the stress when it’s finally time to get your loan. Reminder: check your loan documents and keep remembering to save and budget accordingly.

3 months before moving

Find the Right Agent: Now is the time to sit down with agents you are interested in working with. Your agent will work in your best interest to assist in finding you the right property, negotiating with the seller’s agent, and guide you through the closing process. It is important to keep interviewing Realtors until you find someone you are happy with. This person will be helping you negotiate what could be your biggest financial decision. Chose someone who you not only trust, but is knowledgeable, responsive, and you know will be looking out for you at the closing table. Read agent reviews online and ask for a reference list of their past clients. No one knows an agent better than the people who have worked with them!

At Coastal Premier Properties, we have over one hundred agents and we will match you with an agent that is your perfect fit!

Research Lenders: Your agent can also help you greatly in finding the right lender. Just like agents, talk to a few lenders until you find one you like. You will want to make sure your lender has experience representing people just like you! You can also look for a mortgage broker, who will help you find compare loan rates from multiple lenders, whereas a bank can only offer you their own in-house products.

2 months before moving

Get pre-approved for your loan: If you’ve been following this guide for the past 9 months, then your credit score, paperwork, and down payment should all be on track. You’ve done all your research on lenders and buyers’ agents. Now it’s finally time to start working with them. First of all, you’ll need to get pre-approved for a mortgage.

Make an appointment with your lender or mortgage broker and make sure to bring all of your paperwork. They will run a credit check on you and tell you the amount of the loan you are approved for. Usually people borrow less than the maximum allowed for standard of living purposes. Create a new budget that accounts for your projected mortgage payments, insurance, maintenance, and whatever else you currently have going on in your life.

Start shopping for your new home: When you get pre-approved, the buyer’s agent you’ve been working with will be able to better target homes that meet your goals and that are in your price range. This way you can narrow down your options to what is most realistic.

Get a home inspection: Once the offer is accepted, one of the first things you need to do is have a home inspector go and look at the property. The home inspector ensures that everything is good with the home and that nothing requires repair, which is something that can delay closing.

In the last month

Check to make sure that all of your financial documents are in order and review all lending documents before closing (AGAIN!): You’re almost there! If you’ve been following all of these steps, then the final stretch should be very easy compared to the rest of the process. Make sure your agent helps guide you through the mortgage documents, as that can be one of the most confusing aspects of the process.

Get insurance for your new home: Make sure to get insurance before closing. You must have proof of insurance before closing time.

Do a final walk-through: Do one last walk-through of your soon to be new home, usually a couple days before closing, just to make sure that everything is in the order that you and the seller have agreed upon in the deal.

Get a cashier’s check or bank wire for cash needed at closing: Make sure that you get the exact amount of cash needed for closing. You’ll receive that number a few days before closing. Regular checks are not accepted.

That’s it! You’re finally done, enjoy your new home!


Design Trends: Hexagon Tile Patterns

Nowadays, the regular old subway tile just won’t cut it anymore.  We might feel the need to spice up our humble-abode to give it that fresh look! Playful tile shapes, like the hexagon, can give any room a bold look that will leave guests gazing. Use this shape for kitchen back-splashes, flooring throughout the home, and bathroom design. Take a look at a few of these hexagon tiles for inspiration! All images via our Pinterest

pretty teal tile in the kitchen

Hexagon i vit och grön marmor hos

California Bungalow Home Tour: | Design & Styling: Cecy J Interiors -

Clad in black hexagon floor tiles accented with white grout, this well appointed mudroom features a river rock boots tray placed beneath a built in wood bench fixed against a white shiplap backsplash fitted with oil rubbed bronze hooks mounted under white overhead shelves stuffed with wicker baskets.

White Marble Hexagon Tile from British Ceramic Tile. These tiles are a great option if you want the marble look in your kitchen but without the maintenance of a marble worktop.

figr architects / bridge house, melbourne                                                                                                                                                                                 More


Recipe: Jerk Chicken Collard Wrap


  • 8 large collard green leaves (about 10 ounces)
  • Kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened coconut flakes
  • 8 chicken tenders (about 1 pound)
  • 2 tablespoons jerk seasoning
  • 1/3 cup nonfat Greek yogurt
  • One 14.5-ounce can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 2 cups shredded red cabbage (from 1/2 small head)
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice
  • 1 small avocado, sliced
  • 1 small red bell pepper, cut into thin strips


  • Remove the stems up to the leafy part of the collards. Lay each collard leaf underside up on a flat surface. Locate the thickest part of the stem and use a vegetable peeler to shave off the top for even thickness (this makes it easier to roll up the leaves).
  • Fill a large wide skillet or pan with just enough water to coat the bottom. Arrange a few leaves at a time in a circle, overlapping, in the bottom of the skillet and sprinkle lightly with salt. Repeat with the remaining leaves. Put the skillet over medium-high heat and as soon as steam appears, lower the heat to medium, cover and steam until the collards are green, tender and pliable, 5 to 6 minutes. Use tongs to transfer the leaves to a baking sheet to cool completely.
  • Meanwhile, arrange a rack in the top of the oven and preheat the broiler. Scatter the coconut on a baking sheet and broil until toasted, 15 to 30 seconds. Transfer to a medium bowl. Coat the chicken in 1 tablespoon of the jerk seasoning and 1 tablespoon of the yogurt. Arrange the chicken tenders on the baking sheet and broil until lightly browned and cooked through, about 4 minutes per side.
  • Add the beans to the bowl with the coconut and use a fork to mash lightly. Combine the cabbage, lime juice and remaining 1/4 cup yogurt and 1 tablespoon jerk seasoning in a separate bowl.
  • Lay a collard leaf underside up on a work surface. Lay a piece of chicken across the middle. Top the chicken with a couple slices of avocado and strips of pepper. Pile an eighth of the coconut black beans next to the chicken. Pile an eighth of the cabbage mixture next to the beans. Fold in the sides of the collard leaf and roll up like a burrito. Repeat with the remaining leaves and filling ingredients.


Recipe: Funnel Cake



  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup 2% milk
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 3 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • Oil for deep-fat frying
  • Confectioners’ sugar


  • In a large bowl, beat eggs. Add milk, water and vanilla until well blended. In another bowl, whisk flour, sugar, baking powder and salt; beat into egg mixture until smooth. In an electric skillet or deep-fat fryer, heat oil to 375°.
  • Cover the bottom of a funnel spout with your finger; ladle 1/2 cup batter into the funnel. Holding the funnel several inches above the oil, release your finger and move the funnel in a spiral motion until all the batter is released, scraping with a rubber spatula if needed.
  • Fry 2 minutes on each side or until golden brown. Drain on paper towels. Dust with confectioners’ sugar; serve warm.
Editor’s Note: The batter can be poured from a liquid measuring cup instead of a funnel.
Nutrition Facts

1 funnel cake: 316 calories, 12g fat (2g saturated fat), 50mg cholesterol, 256mg sodium, 44g carbohydrate (8g sugars, 1g fiber), 7g protein.


Restaurant of the Moment: Island Style Hawaii BBQ

4508 Cass St. # D

San Diego, CA 92109

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Island Style Hawaii BBQ is a perfect place to grab a bite to eat while hanging out in Pacific Beach! This BBQ joint transports you back to Hawaii with their delicious traditional dishes.  There’s nothing like a good BBQ at the beach!

Island Style Hawaii’s menu varies from mouthwatering sandwiches, tasty breakfast plates, savory teriyaki chicken and much more! Our favorite is the BBQ mix plate with chicken katsu!

If you’re around the Pacific Beach area enjoying the summer sun, don’t forget to give Island Style Hawaii BBQ a look and see what all the buzz is about!

Coastal Premier Properties Welcomes Marla Bradley Weil

Coastal Premier Properties is excited to welcome Marla Bradley Weil! Marla will be working out of our Carmel Valley Office.

Marla Bradley Weil Welcome

About Marla:

Marla has a love for creating and designing new spaces for people to enjoy living in.  Her interior design services and reinvention of existing spaces stem from her innate creativity, and desire for living an “original life”. Although Marla grew up in Los Angeles, California, She received her Bachelor of Fine Arts degree at the University of Arizona. During her time there she studied a wide variety of Studio Art and Art History.  In 1997, Marla moved to Florence, Italy with the intentions of studying with Studio Arts International, affiliated with the Art Institute in Chicago, Illinois.  She has traveled extensively around the world with a focus on Cultural aesthetics, art and architecture. Having lived in San Francisco for 15 years, Marla had the opportunity to work with the Interior Design firm of Candra Scott & Anderson that specializes in Renovation of Historical Hotels & Residential properties. Marla managed the retrofitting and redesign of the Hotel Rex in San Francisco, the redesign of Nickel & Nickel Winery in Napa, CA and the Sonoma Mission Inn in Sonoma, California. She has also owned and renovated a San Francisco, Edwardian Home built in 1908.  Marla has worked on numerous private homes in Northern & Southern California.

Marla is also a fine artist and has shown her paintings in Galleries/shows in San Francisco, Los Angeles & Palm Springs, California.

Marla Lived in Palm Desert, California for 5 years where she pursued a career as VP of Sales and Marketing for the fashion label, Icon. As Vice President of Sales and Marketing, she was able to accrue valuable skills to market products proficiently.

Marla Received her Internationally recognized certification in Interior Design, from the Interior Design Institute in San Francisco, and has a California Real Estate License. Her true passion is combining her natural sales ability and interest in people, with her creative talents.

Click here to contact Marla! For more about Coastal Premier Properties, visit our website!