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Mar 18

Meet the Trumark Team: Chris Davenport

Chris Davenport in the air at the controls.

Chris Davenport in the air at the controls.

 

Name: Chris Davenport

Title/Position: Senior Vice President of Land Development

Office Name/Location: Trumark Homes & Trumark Urban – Danville & San Francisco

 

Fantasy career: Commercial helicopter pilot

Favorite ethnic cuisine: Italian Food

Most exotic travel experience: Costa Rica

Starbucks (or other coffee shop) order: Trenta Black Iced Tea, unsweetened

Most played song on iPod: Rise – Eddie Vedder
A perfect day in would be: An early pleasure flight in a small plane on a crisp morning, descending through the clouds to land at the “airport in the sky” on Santa Catalina Island, followed by a day exploring the island with the one I love, and a sunny departure back home to Northern California.

Best advice you ever received: Do the most difficult things on your list first.

Your secret talent: I’m a certified Massage Therapist
What you like most about your work: The people I work with.  To a person, they are the kindest, most professional, and supportive team I have ever worked with.

Favorite weekend activity: Flying

Your first job: Construction Laborer for a small construction company when I was 15 years old.  I did precision demolition work on residential houses for remodels and flips. Worst subject in high school: Spanish
What inspires you? Music and a good underdog success story.

Most productive time of day: Morning before lunch

Reality show you’re embarrassed to admit you watch: Not a big reality show fan.

Person you’d like to have dinner with: My Son.

What you’re most proud of: My Son.

A business tool you can’t live without: Excel and email
Next travel destination: Wisconsin for a week long airshow in July.

What’s next for you: Hopefully bigger and better things. Only time will tell.

A bad habit: Excessive hamburger intake. (I’m working on it)

Favorite possession: My airplane

What book is on your nightstand now? The Happiness Project
Words you live by:

First thing you do when you get to the office:  Try to say hello to everyone, then check email.

Last thing you do before you leave your office: On a good day…straighten up my desk for the next day.

Your favorite guilty pleasure: Movies and popcorn.

 

 

Mar 11

Live Green: Waste not, want not

How many times have you done something like this?

Bought a beautiful head of green cabbage at the grocery, intending to make an ultra-healthy meal with it – and ended up throwing it out (and feeling ultra-guilty) because it had grown moldy?

You’re not alone.

Every day, Americans waste enough food to fill the Rose Bowl.

Jonathan Bloom, author of American Wasteland, says we waste more than 40 percent of the food we produce – in our homes, in restaurants and schools, and even at the farm —http://www.americanwastelandbook.com/ — at an annual cost of about $100 billion.

He points to a 30-year study, the Garbage Project, which found that as much as 25 percent of the food we bring into our homes is wasted.  Bloom calculates that a family of four that spends $175 a week on groceries squanders more than $40 worth of food each week and $2,275 a year.

And it’s not just our pocketbooks that suffer.

Food makes up about 19 percent of the waste dumped in landfills, where it ends up rotting and producing methane, a greenhouse gas.  Squandering so much of what we grow also wastes the fossil fuel that went into growing, processing, transporting and refrigerating it.

Considering the millions of Americans who don’t get enough to eat every day, the issue of food waste is also a moral one.

At his website, Bloom writes that in 2005, he had two experiences that opened his eyes to the problem of food waste:

“Volunteering at D.C. Central Kitchen, a homeless shelter that rescues unused food from restaurants and supermarkets, illuminated the excess in those areas. Gleaning, or gathering crops that would otherwise be left in the field and distributing them to the hungry, illustrated the agricultural abundance that is often plowed under.”

 

But we can begin to do the right thing. Below, tips from Bloom and other anti-food waste crusaders:

  • Make friends with your freezer, using it to store fresh foods that would otherwise spoil before you have time to eat them.
  • Invest in special produce containers with top vents and bottom strainers to keep food fresh.  Add a paper towel to the bottom of bagged lettuce and vegetables to absorb liquids.
  • Plan meals and create detailed shopping lists so you don’t buy more food than you can eat.
  • Don’t be afraid of brown spots or mushy parts that can easily be cut away.
  • When in doubt, throw it out, but also follow Bloom’s advice: “Try to give food the benefit of the doubt.”
  • Shop more, buy less.  Resist buying the 20-pound bag of potatoes, even though it’s a great deal, if there’s a chance those spuds will sprout eyes before you can eat them.  In the long run, it will probably save you a few bucks to hit the store more often, and buy only the perishable meat, dairy, bread and produce that you’ll use in the next few days. These tips, and those below, come from a CNN feature titled “Eatocracy.” eatocracy.cnn.com/2013/01/15/eat-this-list-4-ways-to-combat-food-waste-at-home-and-save-a-little-cash-while-youre-at-it/
  • If possible, opt for loose vegetables and bulk bin dry goods, rather than pre-measured amounts, so you can buy just what you need. Your food will be fresher, you’ll waste less packaging and food, and you’ll spend less time wandering around your kitchen searching for the cause of the mystery smell.
  • Clean and trim your vegetables as soon as you get them home.  They’ll last longer, and you’ll be more inclined to eat them or use them in recipes.
  • Put those cleaned veggies in containers in front of the fridge, so you’re more likely to grab them for a snack.
  • Store smartly. Keep a roll of tape and a Sharpie in easy reach and write the date on each container or bag to remind you when you bought it.   Include meat, dairy and baked good purchases as well.
  • Store fruit separately from vegetables, as it releases ethylene gas that will cause vegetables to spoil more quickly.
  • Use every last scrap. Most of us throw out perfectly edible parts of plants, just because we don’t know better.  Many chefs and gardeners know that the stems, leaves, tops and peels are edible or usable. Radish leaves, for example, rival arugula, escarole and mache for crunch and distinctive flavor. Sturdy cauliflower and broccoli stems can be shaved thin to sauté, roast or add raw crunch to salads and slaws.
  •  Take vegetables that have begun to wilt (but don’t show any signs of mold or rot) and turn them into a stock, stew or soup.  Put what can’t be salvaged into the compost bin.

And that entire head of cabbage you tossed?  Next time, before you put it in your basket, ask the produce worker to cut it in half for you.  Be realistic, in other words, about how much you’re really going to consume.

 

Mar 07

Eagle Scout Brings Together Community for New Park Monument

Congratulations to Adam Dalton of Upland, Calif., who coordinated the building of a park monument on the greenbelt near our first new home community Wyeth Cove as an Eagle Scout project.  Local businesses like ours contributed to his efforts. What a remarkable young man!

Click here to view his video on YouTube:  http://ow.ly/isMI9

 

Mar 05

Trumark Homes Sells Last of 82 Townhomes in the Highlights Community of Granada Hills

California market for reasonable priced homes picked up in recent months  

GRANADA HILLS, Calif. – March 5, 2013 – Trumark Homes has sold the last of 82 townhomes in its gated HighLights community perched on a hilltop in Granada Hills, Calif. Thirty-four of the homes were purchased in the past 14 months, reflecting increased U.S. consumer confidence and a recovering housing market.

“We are extremely pleased with our close-out sales pace at HighLights, given the challenges of distressed properties still on the market and a restrictive lending environment,” said Michael Maples, principal of Trumark Homes.  “Our homes were priced well, and the location was unbeatable: a beautiful hilltop with stunning views of the city, in a well-established neighborhood close to freeways, shopping and restaurants, so the value was clearly there.”

The two- and three- story townhomes, on the corner of Odyssey Drive and Blucher, have six different floor plans ranging from 1,112 to 1659 square feet.  Gourmet kitchens boast Whirlpool stainless steel appliances and granite countertops. Other features include crown molding, wainscoting, and marble countertops in the spacious bathrooms. HighLights’ environmentally friendly features include state-of-the-art tankless water heaters, energy-saving lighting and Low E windows.

“Homebuyer interest in our community has been strong from the start, in large part due to location, product type and affordability,” said Trumark’s Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing Mark Higgins. “The community is only 30 minutes away from downtown LA, and with prices in the $300,000s, it offers a reasonable commute at an affordable price.”

Resmark Equity Partners, LLC provided $8.4 million to purchase the nine-acre property in April of 2010, and then Trumark built and marketed the homes.

About The Trumark Group of Companies

The Trumark Group of Companies is a diversified real estate developer and builder with expertise in land acquisition, homebuilding, community design, entitlements and office, R&D and retail development.

Trumark Companies is the residential development arm of the organization and has completed over $600 million in transactions since 2000, representing approximately 2,500 lots in Northern and Southern California.  www.trumark-co.com/companies

Trumark Commercial, which builds, leases and sells commercial buildings, has entitled or developed approximately two million square feet of office, R&D, retail and hotel properties in the northern portion of the Golden State. www.trumarkco.com/commercial

Trumark Homes is a new generation homebuilder that is nimble, focused and unburdened by broken projects of the past. Since May of 2009, Trumark has raised more than $140 million of equity and funded 15 deals. Its pipeline exceeds 2,000 lots in core urban areas of California, representing more than $900 million in future revenue. www.trumarkhomes.com

 Trumark Urban engages in multifamily acquisition and development in core urban neighborhoods close to jobs, transit and local businesses. Since making the strategic decision to focus on San Francisco in 2011, the new division has acquired six sites in San Francisco for mid- and high-rise condominium communities with plans in the works for more than 500 units. www.trumarkurban.com

Additional information is available at www.trumark-co.com

About Resmark Equity Partners, LLC

 Since 1995, Resmark Equity Partners has offered equity investment capital and asset management powered by core foundational discipline and focus. The company’s investment activities span management, financing, acquisition and development of residential for-sale and multifamily real estate in the Western United States and other select markets. Currently, Resmark manages over $950 million in capital, principally for two of the nation’s largest pension funds; to date, it has participated in more than 120 residential development deals. Resmark attributes its impeccable reputation, enduring partner relationships, superior products and strong financial performance to company-wide diligence, agility and dedication to quality. More information can be found at www.Resmarkllc.com.