Yelp Recommendations

Patty Holbert, Berkeley

6/28/18

Grace has helped members of our family buy three homes and sell one over the past eleven years. Recently she advised my son as he searched for a home in Oakland and Berkeley. Grace assisted him in evaluating properties, accurately estimating the price that would be necessary to compete for a given property. Her suggestions were spot on in writing a winning bid, and she and her assistant Kim helped my son navigate escrow and meet all deadlines in a timely fashion. Since the sale, they have remained available to answer questions and recommend contractors to perform repairs. Grace is experienced, dedicated, friendly, and kind. Kim is also a professional, and they make a great team. In this competitive and rapidly unfolding market, they provide guidance and nuanced judgment that is invaluable.

Patty Holbert, Berkeley

Fred L., El Cerrito

3/31/17

Grace and Kim helped sell my family’s house in El Cerrito hills in early spring 2017. This was truly a team effort with a very successful outcome. For example, the house was in need of significant renovation before it was put on the market, and Grace was instrumental in finding and managing expert contractors who transformed it into a spectacular home that sold quickly. Grace and Kim were professional throughout the process, everything went on schedule, even during record-setting rains, and the closing was the easiest ever. The team’s detailed knowledge of the neighborhood was key to the successful marketing of the home. I would highly recommend interviewing Grace and Kim if you are looking to buy or sell.

—Fred L., El Cerrito

Sheryl R., El Cerrito

10/16/16

We worked with Grace and Kim to sell our house. It had been about 20 years since we had sold our last house and we really needed the help. Grace and Kim let us know exactly what we needed to do in order to get the best price for our place. They worked with the workers who updated the place. Helped us get the best stager around. Since we had already moved out of the area they kept track of all of the work, inspectors and workers for us. We were able to do everything virtually which really helped us. All in all they made the whole process easy and fun.

—Sheryl R., El Cerrito

Iulia Stefan, Kensington

10/25/16

Grace and Kim were amazing. They were with us through every step of the process and were true advocates for us. Thanks to Grace’s skill, network and knowledge of the local market, we were able to secure a bidding win for our beautiful first home. Kim and Grace helped us connect the dots during the entire pre and post purchase process and were very responsive and knowledgeable throughout. I would highly recommend this team!

—Iulia Stefan, Kensington

Joe Ryan, Moraga

6/27/16

Grace and her assistant Kim are an amazing real estate team! From start to finish, I felt well taken care of. Grace was a recommendation from my previous real estate agent in San Francisco and after our first meeting; I knew she was the right fit for me and my working style.
Grace and Kim are detail oriented and efficient, and I found them easy to partner with in finding my new home. Whenever I had a question, either Grace or Kim got back to me very quickly. The market in Oakland, Berkeley, and Lamorinda is crazy. That said, if you (the buyer) invest time staying on top oflistings using an app like Redfin, you can leverage your agent to see the properties that most interest you. The real estate world is different now – I wouldn’t expect my agent to be driving me around to every new listing and giving me neighborhood tours. That’s on you, the buyer. But once I found homes that I liked, Grace and Kim were helpful at giving me input and additional info about them. When I wanted disclosure packets, I usually had them within 24 hours.

Where I really value the work of an agent and where I benefitted most from Grace and Kim is in their advice, offer strategies, network of relationships with other agents and people in the business, and their highly organized approach to moving through a deal. Grace seems to have fantastic relationships across the industry, which I believe definitely helped me win the home I purchased. Any time I needed to bring in an inspector or other professional, Grace and Kim always had trusted folks to immediately recommend. I never felt like we “stalled” at any point. I also never felt worried about “what’s happening right now?” The overall process was smooth and I’m happy with the home I purchased.

I would be very happy to work with Grace and Kim again in the future and I highly recommend them!

—Joe Ryan, Moraga

Louie C., Berkeley

12/12/2015

If you are in need of a real estate agent, you should call Grace Bishop at Red Oak Realty. We met with Grace while trying to decide whether to sell or rent a house that had been in the family for 60 years. When we decided to sell, Grace and her assistant, Kim, set us on the right path. At Grace’s suggestion, the proper inspections & updates to the house were made. When the house went up for sale and after just 2 open houses, we received 4 offers that far exceeded our expectations. Grace was very professional, informative, very knowledgeable and very easy to talk to. We highly recommend Grace

—Louie C., Berkeley

Brady T., Oakland

8/14/2015

I have had the opportunity of working with Grace on a recent transaction. Grace conducts herself in a very professional manner, is very knowledgeable, and is truly a pleasure to work with. I would highly recommend her to anyone!

—Brady T., Oakland

Amit A., Richmond

8/4/2015

Grace is great—patient, responsive, helpful, and able to Get Things Done. Grace and her team just helped us sell our house in the East Bay. We were concerned that it would be a hassle since we were moving to SoCal before the house went on the market. We definitely didn’t want to be juggling a bunch of issues from afar while trying to settle into our new place. Fortunately, we didn’t have to. The entire process was smooth from start to finish. Grace provided great recommendations on stagers, window cleaners, carpet cleaners, and so on. After we moved out, all the necessary paperwork was dealt with over email and with a mobile notary. Two weeks later we got a great offer on the house and closed soon after. This is how it should be done!

—Amit A., Richmond

B.T., El Cerrito

7/9/15

Grace was exactly the kind of realtor we wanted in our corner: very responsive and easy to work with, yet also willing to push hard when there’s a good opportunity to be had. She also has an exceptionally good intuitive sense of the market, which helped us to know when certain houses were unrealistic for us and which ones were flying under the radar.

We got a house on only our second bid, but that was largely due to Grace’s advice to watch the market very carefully and then pounce with a very strong offer when we saw something we loved.

—B.T., El Cerrito

Dave and Meg O., Berkeley

6/23/2015

In the spring of 2015, Grace helped us buy a house prior to a cross-country move. We gave her a pretty tough challenge: the market was going crazy and she had only a few days to meet with us in person. But it worked. We got a good house in a great location with our first offer.

Several things stand out about working with Grace (and Kim, who was also very helpful). First, she was strategic and realistic, both of which were crucial in helping us land a house. Second, she and her team communicated very effectively with us. Buying from across the country is stressful enough, and having a realtor who checked in regularly, was organized, and was very transparent in her thinking was quite helpful. Third, we enjoyed spending time with Grace and Kim; they both made the process of searching as pleasant as it could realistically be. Fourth, after the deal closed but before our move, Grace continued to be wonderfully helpful in dealing with contractors and the other logistics of cross-country homeownership. She was a class act throughout the process, and we would highly recommend working with her.

—Dave and Meg O., Berkeley

Sandy and Steve Smith, Berkeley

5/7/2015

Thank you Grace! You made it easy for us to sell our Berkeley house. Plus you added much value by selecting good contractors to fix its various flaws. They really polished the old place up to look its best. You were absolutely right about the importance of staging, based on how many offers we got. Thanks for arranging those offers in a clear fashion for us to choose, and for handling the final negotiations and for arranging remote signing for Sandy and me. I will certainly recommend you and Red Oak to anyone who wants to buy/sell a house in the bay area.
Best regards,

—Sandy and Steve Smith, Berkeley

Amanda B., Oakland

1/18/2015

Reflecting on the holidays and the start of the new year, one name comes to mind when my husband and I think how lucky we are to have found our beautiful home. GRACE BISHOP. Grace is AMAZING. I recommend her in a heartbeat to anyone who needs a realtor and raved about her throughout our house-buying experience when discussing with other friends who were also house-hunting.

I rarely Yelp; I am more of a Yelp lurker and read other’s reviews. But I feel NOT reviewing Grace here would be a great disservice to anyone looking for a rockstar agent.

We received a glowing recommendation from a friend as my husband and I were on the market to buy our first house. We did our due diligence and researched Grace (on Yelp and her website) and interviewed her in addition to several other agents. Finding someone who was knowledgeable in the industry, well-versed in the East Bay and that we also liked and trusted was important to us. Hands down she was the front-runner. From her professionalism in our first meeting to the well-thought out information booklet she gave us, we were super impressed from Day 1.

Grace is smart, thoughtful and detail-oriented. She’s super responsive via phone, email and text. And as we were going through one of the biggest decisions we would ever make, we appreciated her warmth and witty humor to help us through the big hurdles, especially during a fast-paced 15-day escrow. I was in the middle of my pregnancy while we were house-hunting, and Grace was kind and patient during what I attribute to hormonal meltdowns.

Grace’s numerous accolades prove she’s sought after and quite busy, but we never felt like we weren’t her main focus. She was always two steps ahead on what our next move should be. Her assistant, Kim, was also part of this great team that helped us secure a house that we love. In the few instances Grace was not available, she gave us ample heads up and Kim was guiding us so we didn’t lose momentum. We both work in San Francisco and she was flexible in meeting us to accommodate our work schedule.

Grace is aggressive but not pushy – exactly what you need in an intense seller’s market. She’s well-networked with contractors you can trust. Her recommendations are always spot on. If something doesn’t sound like a good idea, she walks you through the logic of why and gives alternate solutions. She’s a problem-solver. We had a few surprises along the way and she was always creatively triaging the best way to work through issues.

As we make some necessary improvements to our newly purchased home (all of which were discovered during escrow inspections based on Grace’s recommendations), we continue to work with contractors who are consummate professionals who either Grace recommended directly or know of her. Her reputation throughout the industry is stellar and in working with her, it’s clear as to why. We can’t recommend her highly enough. And while we plan to be in our home for many, many years, she will be our first phone call should we decide to sell. Grace rocks!

—Amanda B., Oakland

Alex M., Oakland

1/2/2015

We lived overseas for a number of years so we were a bit shocked with the whole home-buying-in-the-Bay-Area-in-late-2014 experience.
We were introduced to Grace by a friend and she was extremely helpful in guiding us through the whole process — made sure that we took the necessary steps so that our offer had the best chance to be accepted in this very competitive market. She also gave us contact information for any and all other people/services that we needed during and after the big transaction.
Grace and her assistant Kim Markison, (they worked as a team,) were always available to answer our many questions and worries.
She also helped us begin celebrating the holidays in our new town with a lovely holiday party. Thanks!

-Alex M., Oakland


Bridget C., Berkeley

11/24/2014

We contacted Grace after being referred to her by a work colleague. We met with her in August ’14 and by the end of October ’14 we had closed on a home in Berkeley that was exactly what we were looking for. Grace seems to really understand how to negotiate competitively in the current market. We even had a baby while in escrow and she helped make the process stress free. She scheduled all of our inspections for us (structural engineer, home, termite, and other specialists) and we still closed in less than 30 days (would have probably been 21 but the baby). I highly recommend Grace, she is very knowledgeable and will make sure that you cross all the t’s and dot the i’s during your home purchase.

-Bridget C., Berkeley


Kevin McKay 10/09/14

10/09/14

Selling any large financial asset can be very stressful, and when selling a home, there is an emotional component that can cloud ones judgment. It is critical to work with a professional you can trust. When I sold my house, Grace recommended I do some things that were counter intuitive to me, but I put my trust in her because she did an amazing job helping my wife buy a house. The outcome of the sale exceeded my expectations and more, and I am so glad I had Grace as my Realtor. Grace and her assistant Kim are kind, communicative, and professional.

-Kevin McKay


Randy Farmer 09/13/14

09/13/14

In August of 2014, we worked with Red Oak Realty to find our new home in Rockridge. We interviewed a dozen firms, with Red Oak making the final cut-of-two. They won out because of their team-approach to working with their clients.

We’ve got Art “Voice of Experience” White — the manager and the guy with all the deep experience in the industry. He was able to help calm our nerves about the very jumpy market, and seemingly odd behavior we’d seem from selling agents.

Then there was Kim “Dash” Markison, who did all the legwork, taking the time to quickly learn exactly what we were looking for and showing us around the candidates. Then, walking us through the disclosures and other details.

Lastly, was Grace “The Closer” Bishop — the agent that everyone knows gets the deal done. She worked with the seller to get our bullet-proof-but-not-highest offer a fair hearing, and eventually to close!

Red Oak lead us quickly to a Win-Win-Win transaction in a crazy market!

~ Randy F., buyer

Randy Farmer


Gary S., San Francisco

9/12/2014

Grace Bishop is, without a doubt, the ideal realtor! In 2013, Grace warmly and effectively moved our family from hopefuls to homeowners, attentively addressing any questions or concerns we had along the way. We’ve lived in our house for over a year now, and Grace continues to be a friendly and reliable resource for all manner of helpful information; she is truly the agent who keeps on giving… long after escrow has closed! Grace came to us highly recommended by friends who’d had the same great experience working with her, and now it’s our pleasure to recommend her to any prospective homeowners. Grace’s compassion, humor, and patience cannot be overstated, and are not taken for granted.

-Gary S., San Francisco

Donald Dame 09/07/14

09/07/14

It is a difficult task to select a realtor. We recently listed and sold our home in Berkeley utilizing Red Oak Realty’s Grace Bishop. Grace and her assistant, Kim Markison, did an exceptional job throughout the process including suggested pricing, home preparation guidance, marketing, open houses, appraisal and consummation of the sale, all within six weeks of initial listing! Clear and timely communication and representation made this transaction smooth for all parties. We give Grace Bishop and Red Oak our highest recommendation.

Donald Dame


Craig W., Berkeley

8/25/2014

Grace helped my wife and me purchase our first house. As first-time home buyers in the challenging East Bay market, we had a lot to learn. Our friends haven’t yet bought homes and our families don’t live in the area, so we ended up relying almost entirely on Grace’s guidance to navigate the market. We were really pleased with how well Grace walked us through the process and stayed in touch as each week’s batch of open houses came on the market. She quickly keyed in on what we were looking for, and was flexible when we refined our ideas for what we wanted (yes, we changed our mind – it happens).

When it came time to negotiate, Grace really shined. We found her advice on making competitive offers to be spot on, and when we found items in inspections that represented a significant additional cost, she fought to bring the cost down for us. We were so glad we decided to work with her.

We like our house, and don’t plan to move anytime soon, but we’d love to work with Grace again.

-Craig W., Berkeley


Eileen Foran 07/22/14

07/22/14

Grace Bishop is THE person you want representing you in Berkeley when buying or selling a house. Grace represented me as a buyer back in 2005, when the housing market was crazy, and again as a seller in the spring of 2014–when the market was even crazier! In both buying and selling a house, I was well-represented, informed, and respected by Grace through the entire process.

As a first-time buyer, I had a lot to learn about the market in Berkeley, and Grace was so helpful, knowledgeable, patient, positive, and full of quiet energy that helped balance the stress and make a complicated process go as smoothly as possible.

As a seller, I did not hesitate to call Grace to represent me again, and Grace did not disappoint. Again, Grace navigated me through the complexities of the housing market in Berkeley, and offered astute advice about how to best prepare my house for sale.

Because Grace is so trustworthy, unwavering in her integrity, firm in her expectations, and smart as a whip, I was able to trust in Grace and could not be happier with the results of the sale. Grace is top-notch!

~ Eileen Foran, Buyer and Seller

Eileen Foran


Kaylah Sterling 06/30/14

06/30/14

A RAVING, GLOWING REVIEW FOR GRACE BISHOP

Buying a condo or a house is significant, because let’s face it, what we’re buying is a home, our place to live, our own private sanctuary, our space. Grace Bishop proved to be my dream catcher. First, she listened carefully to my comments as we searched the preliminary properties. Grace was attentive…sharp, quick, smart, perceptive. She listened to my words, watched my reactions and efficiently gathered the data, sized up my taste and began to find the the kind of streets I liked, the architectural design that turned me on, my love of high ceilings, my need for flooding light. But that was just the beginning, for we did find my dream property and I wanted that place to be mine! What I learned from Grace was the art of making an offer… because how one’s offer is crafted by the realtor and presented to the buyer makes all the difference between those who are turned down, and the lucky party who’s given the chance to buy! Grace Bishop wrote, what she described to me, as an unconventional offer. What did that mean? In today’s competitive market, an agent has to position their buyer as the one to sell to. And Grace did that with skill and finesse. The offer was accepted. Horray! And then came the host of details, the back and forth negotiations and information gathering involving the seller, the lender, the escrow officer, etc. Grace was my cheer leader keeping my faith high and my courage in tact. Grace was my team captain. Grace was there at 11PM at night emailing with that last minute document urgently needed for the lender…Grace Bishop picked me up at bart on several occasions, provided recommendations when asked for a painter, or handyman, the list of utility companies, etc. Grace was fun to work with, warm, knowledgeable…on the ball! Hey, there are hundreds of realtors in the east bay, but there is only one sharp go getter with the most beautiful soul, and that’s Grace Bishop!

Kaylah Sterling


Ellen LaPointe 05/09/14

05/09/14

Grace is absolutely fantastic to work with. She is impeccable, gracious, strategic, thorough, patient, smart – I really can’t say enough. She represented me in a sale that involved some complexity, and moved us to an outcome that exceeded our best case scenario projections. She kept us calm and focused on our goal, and navigated big and small challenges that arose with enormous poise throughout the process. She knows what she is doing, and is held in high regard among her colleagues. This is priceless. Her systems are excellent, and she has surrounded herself with a team of outstanding professionals to work with at various points in the process.

Thank you, Grace, for your extraordinary work. I will be referring everyone I know to you.

Ellen L.


Megan Voorhees 10/13/2013

10/13/2013

I have worked with 4 realtors in the past decade and I truly wish I had just worked with Grace. We worked with Grace to sell our house in Berkeley and she was just fabulous-she had great referrals to a variety of people to help us get the house ready to sell, she was clear about process and all that we could do to prepare our house without being pushy, she was very detail-oriented (which is essential in a realtor), and it became clear that other realtors respect her and trusted her (which helped us get $120,000 over our asking price). And she is also easy to talk with, calming when things are stressful, and just good people. I have no hesitation in recommending her!

Megan Voorhees


Esme Shaller 8/19/2013

8/19/2013

Grace is a completely amazing realtor. Anyone looking in the insane Berkeley market knows that you need someone really smart to be helping you, and my husband and I felt in completely great hands the entire journey with Grace.
We originally attempted to purchase a home with another realtor, back in 2009. We made offers on at least 5 homes, none of which were accepted. The old realtor basically just kept saying, ” you got outbid.” We didn’t get the impression he was advocating for us at all, just setting out numbers. We also constantly felt pressured by both him and our mortgage broker to bid more and work more and ask relatives for more money, none of which were options that were in line with reality (bid more, ask others) or our values (work more).
Grace met with us, really listened, and took us seriously. Although she and Red Oak certainly sell their share of million-dollar-plus homes, we never felt like second-class citizens because we were more in the 500k 2bed/1bath range (an impression we certainly got working with our other realtor). The competition in Berkeley is FIERCE, especially at the entry-level end of the real estate market, and Grace didn’t waiver, kept us up-to-date on news she heard from other realtors about properties, and gave great advice while making it clear that our financial decisions were ours alone.
Within TWO MONTHS of working with Grace, we found a dream home for our small family, 3 blocks from our daughter’s elementary school and 5 blocks from BART, which we both use to commute to work. We put in one offer, and with Grace’s help, wrote a wonderful letter that she thought helped seal the deal.
This is all in addition to the general ease of working with her for all kinds of technical reasons, DocuSign (a remote signing program) most of all– the other guy acted like we had nothing in our lives but time to run to his office and sign stuff, constantly. Couldn’t recommend Grace and the Red Oak staff more.

EsmeShaller

Barkeley, CA

 

Rachel Elginsmith 7/30/2013

7/30/2013

I hardly ever review anything on Yelp – but I have to make an exception here. I don’t know what I can add to her already exceptional reviews, except to say that Grace really is a unique and utterly exceptional person in the world of real estate. She’s helped us purchase two homes and sell one, and in every case has gone above and beyond. Our most recent purchase and sale were particularly hectic, having to be negotiated partly while we were on another continent (!), and Grace handled it all with unbelievable patience and capability. We got outstanding results with both, and neither deal would have gotten done without her.
I can’t recommend her highly enough, especially in a volatile market. Call her.

Rachel Elginsmith

Oakland, CA

Victor Balta 7/29/2013

7/29/2013

Probably the best thing I can say about Grace is that she makes me wish I was either buying or selling a house all the time. Before moving back to Northern California, we’d had our share of experiences with Realtors who were solid, very good and not very effective. Grace raised the bar tremendously, starting when we first relocated from Philadelphia to Oakland in 2011.
First some background: Redfin was all the rage in 2011 when we were looking to move back to California, and I figured we could use it to buy our house and skip the standard Realtor fees. Fortunately, a Bay Area architect who came to look at a place with me because we had some hopes of expanding or adding on to a smaller house suggested that we get in touch with Grace. It was the best phone call we ever made. The process of buying a place from 3,000 miles away was made so easy by Grace’s expertise, calmness under pressure and willingness to do whatever was needed to make sure our deal was done — including staying up with us on the phone until 11 p.m. (Pacific time) to work out some kinks with our mortgage broker on a tight deadline.
When it came time to sell because my job relocated us back to the east coast just two years later, there was never any doubt about who would be our Realtor. Now, we were certainly not selling the most expensive house among Grace’s listings, but you’d never know it by the service. Grace was attentive, great with communication, realistic about what we should expect and very clear about what our strategy would be. She also made sure we stayed on top of the things we needed to do.
In short, Grace is awesome and assuming our next purchase or sale is not in the Bay Area, we’ll be thankful to find a Realtor who is even half as good.

Victor Balta

New York, NY

TJ S. 8/25/2012

8/25/2012

We recently sold our house with Grace and it was without exception a truly positive experience. We had been burnt by a previous experience and working with Grace restored our faith that there are awesome, honest, caring and diligent realtors out there. Grace was thorough, experienced and strategic through the sales process. We were definitely anxious sellers but Grace was very patient and responsive which was what we needed. I would recommend Grace to a friend. TJ and Natasha

TJ S.

San Francisco, CA

TJ and Natasha, Berkeley

8/25/2012

We recently sold our house with Grace and it was without exception a truly positive experience. We had been burnt by a previous experience and working with Grace restored our faith that there are awesome, honest, caring and diligent realtors out there. Grace was thorough, experienced and strategic through the sales process. We were definitely anxious sellers but Grace was very patient and responsive which was what we needed. I would recommend Grace to a friend.

-TJ and Natasha, Berkeley

Jo and Will Tams, Albany

8/19/2012

Grace Bishop is an outstanding agent. Over the past 6 years, she guided us with patience, expertise, and determination through two home purchases and one home sale. Grace has earned our complete trust and respect every step of the way, and we cannot recommend her highly enough to others looking to buy or sell a home.

Our first purchase was a condo that suited our needs perfectly. We were completely new to the real estate market, and Grace made the whole process quite simple for us. We spent five happy years there and welcomed our two children into our family, which led to the need for a second search. At that point, we faced an increasingly competitive and unpredictable housing market with multiple offers on most listings. Grace was always able to gauge the situation accurately and offer sound advice about how to best position ourselves if we were to make an offer. She kept close tabs on activity and answered our questions, going out of her way to chat after our kids had gone to bed or give us a second look at a home in the early evening. She supported us through some difficult decisions and helped us refine what we were looking for with tremendous patience and honesty. After more than a year of searching, we found the home we’d been hoping for all along and, with Grace’s guidance, were able to put together the winning bid out of 8 offers. We couldn’t be happier and feel so fortunate to finally be “home.”

Selling our condo with Grace was a very straightforward and successful process; she met with us early on and advised us on which upgrades and touch-ups would be beneficial and which were not necessary. We updated our kitchen and took advantage of Grace’s extensive network of specialists to prepare our home for sale (paint, carpet, staging, etc.) for a very reasonable cost. After one Sunday Open Home, we had four solid offers and agreed to one that was far beyond what we’d been hoping for. We attribute this terrific response to Grace’s hard work in promoting our condo with agents and prospective buyers and to her advice with prepping our home so that it would look its best.

Grace’s extensive knowledge of the local market and solid-gold reputation are truly unparalleled in the East Bay. She goes to bat for her clients and is comfortable and tough in the heat of battle. She is a pleasure to work with and thankfully maintains a sense of humor while always staying professional and dedicated to serving her clients. It has been incredibly reassuring and beneficial to have Grace by our side through this process. She is a gem of a person, and we are deeply grateful for her excellent work on our behalf.

-Jo and Will Tams, Albany

Mike D. 4/9/2012

4/9/2012

Grace has helped me purchase two homes and has been responsive, knowledgable, and willing to show up for multiple inspections. I just closed on my home and there were multiple concerns post offer and Grace was quick to contact the seller and get things resolved. She also has DocuSign, which really saved a ton of time in signing documents. Grace really knows the Berkeley, Albany, Oakland, and El Cerrito areas especially and I highly recommend her as an agent.

Mike D.

El Cerrito, CA

Jay M. 11/23/2011

11/23/2011

I want to offer this recommendation for Grace Bishop from the perspective of a home inspector who often works with Grace. Early in my career I purchased a franchise that marketed to real estate agents in a way that was suggestive that their home inspectors would be light on their comments by writing reports “In the right perspective”. Several legal fees later, I severed my association with that franchise and that experience galvanized the idea that I will only develop relationships with clients who will spend the time and money to receive a thorough inspection. I also was resolved to develop relationships with real estate agents who take the inspection seriously instead of just going through the motions to only cover themselves. I knew by reputation that Grace was the right kind of agent and that was confirmed quickly when I started working with her. Luckily I work in a geographic location where I believe there are more agents like Grace than any other part of the country. Recently I dealt with out of town agents who did not share Grace’s professionalism and respect for what I do. I kept thinking, “I wish these guys were like Grace.” Grace respects my time, prepares clients to respect my cancellation fee, and always supports my method. I believe that her respect for her team members in addition to her devotion to her clients is what sets her apart.

Jay M.

Berkeley, CA

K. K., Oakland

9/22/2011

I’m a first time home buyer.My partner and I were looking for a home that would give our son priority for a good elementary school in the Oakland options process. Whenever we would talk to Grace about a house we were interested, she was very informed. She knew something about all the houses we were interested in and knew the neighborhoods were interested in in great detail.

One thing that really impressed me about Grace was that when we had settled on a house to make an offer she checked in with me to make sure that I was happy about the house even though it didn’t have some of the things that I had initially said that I wanted. This showed me that (1) she had actually listened to me when I was talking about what I wanted from a house and cared enough to remember what I said and (2) that she was more concerned about my being satisfied with my purchase than her earning a quick commission.

While both Grace’s integrity and detailed knowledge of what was actually on the market were impressive, where she really shone was once we made an offer. She explained the whole escrow process to me from beginning to end. She helped us figure out what sort of offer to make and helped us negotiate with very difficult sellers. She talked me down, whenever I worked myself up into a tizzy. We ended up getting the house for significantly less than it listed for, largely because of Grace.

-K. K., Oakland

Matthew R. 2/24/2011

2/24/2011

We cannot recommend Grace Bishop highly enough if you are in the market to buy or sell a home. When we decided to buy in October 2010, we knew two things: we wanted to move quickly, and our first call had to be to Grace. She was incredibly supportive and helpful throughout our search. Within two weeks, we got a crash course on the inventory and market conditions in our desired neighborhoods, looked at over two dozen houses, found our home, and made an offer. We closed (on time) a month later, at the end of November. Grace was in touch with us daily–responding to our calls or emails, suggesting new properties that fit our criteria, encouraging us to keep refining our search.

Grace provided amazing service from day one through closing. As first-time home buyers, we had a number of questions–about prices, offers, disclosures, inspections, financing, closing, and even contractors. Grace was always quick to reply, always ready with sound advice or an excellent recommendation, and always incredibly generous with her time.

Grace’s knowledge, professional skill, and decisiveness were integral to getting our offer accepted. She learned about a significant price reduction on the house on a Tuesday morning, about the same time we found the listing online. Grace knew that the house met each of our most important criteria, and that we should see it. She also knew that the price reduction would generate significant interest on the Thursday brokers’ tour. By sunset on Tuesday, Grace had walked through the house with each of us. By dinner time, we decided to make an offer, which Grace stayed up to write with us late into the night. By Wednesday, before anyone else had acted on the price reduction–before most agents, let alone their clients, had even noticed it–our offer had been accepted. We could not have acted so quickly, or with such confidence, unless Grace knew exactly what we were looking for. And, thanks to Grace, we got our wonderful home without getting into a bidding war.

Grace has been a friend for years, but we know that we didn’t receive special treatment. She gives the same attention and personalized service to each of her clients. Grace has an amazing gift for reading people and situations and responding appropriately–an invaluable skill in her profession. She was always available when we needed her, but never pushy. She never wasted our time (or hers) by checking in for the sake of checking in. Whenever she contacted us, we knew it was for a good reason that required our immediate attention.

Finally, we always felt comfortable with Grace representing us. We trusted her to act in our best interests at all times. The professionalism and poise she projected in dealing with sellers’ agents, the escrow agent, or even our lender reflected well on us by association.

We hope to be in our home for many years. But if and when we move, our first call will again be to Grace.

Matthew R.

Berkeley, CA

Jim Farber & Melissa Graviss, Oakland, CA

12/3/2010

After 8 years of looking for a house, we met Grace and found our house.

For whatever reasons, our bids with other agents got close but never were accepted. Grace got us our house on our very first bid together. If only we had found her sooner!

Grace understood our needs and our limitations right away and seemed to really get what we were looking for. She asked all the right questions and made us come up with some tough answers. Just one month after working together, we had our house and 30 days later, we moved in. Grace was our fearless leader throughout the home buying process. From negotiation tactics to mortgage and inspection help, we literally could not have done it without Grace and her very strong contact list. Through the process, Grace was our unflappable rock. She gets our highest recommendation.

We love our new home and truly have Grace to thank for it.

-Jim Farber & Melissa Graviss, Oakland, CA

Leslie C. (11/9/2010)

11/9/2010

Grace Bishop was the best referral I have ever received! She performed and delivered above and beyond all my expectations.

I was a first time buyer with little knowledge of how the real estate industry truly worked and my time and flexibility to traverse through this unknown world was limited by my profession. Grace was focused, knowledgeable and able to point me in the direction of what I needed to do to educate myself as well as was accommodating, patient and kept her word as to what she could do for me.

Buying a house is a complex endeavor that triggers many emotions, engulfs a good portion of your life and can be overwhelming. Grace can break it down to digestible pieces. Her immense knowledge of the East Bay Real Estate Market, neighborhoods and referrals to quality professionals whose assistance you may need during the buying process or 5 years later are invaluable. Her experience helps you to become a stronger contender for your dream home as she can advise you in bidding, negotiations and be an objective person to help you navigate any situations that arise during the process. Further Grace takes the time to get to know you and what you want from a house as well as how much you want to spend. She values your time, won’t waste it and is constantly looking for that “house” for you. Her expertise offers you more than less experienced eyes could see of a house”s potential or pitfall.

Once you have Grace as a real estate agent, you have her as a friend and resource for life. Five years later and I still go to Grace first with questions, to seek referrals etc. for anything that has to do with my house. She always has the time, an answer or referral waiting for me. If for some reason she doesn’t hold the answer she knows someone who will. As I explore my next housing options, the one thing I know for sure is that I will choose Grace Bishop to be my agent.

Leslie C.

Oakland, CA

Leslie B (11/3/2010)

11/3/2010

As a professional trustee, I have used Grace to sell two different client’s homes in the East Bay. Having worked with several real estate agent’s, I immediately appreciated Grace’s organizational skills, and her ability to get the workmen in to get the house ready for sale. In both instances, the house sold for over the asking price-which was great in a “down” market.

I wouldn’t hesitate to reccomend or use Grace again.

Leslie B.

San Leandro, CA

K. K. 9/22/2011

9/22/2011

I’m a first time home buyer. My partner and I were looking for a home that would give our son priority for a good elementary school in the Oakland options process. Whenever we would talk to Grace about a house we were interested, she was very informed. She knew something about all the houses we were interested in and knew the neighborhoods were interested in in great detail.

One thing that really impressed me about Grace was that when we had settled on a house to make an offer she checked in with me to make sure that I was happy about the house even though it didn’t have some of the things that I had initially said that I wanted. This showed me that (1) she had actually listened to me when I was talking about what I wanted from a house and cared enough to remember what I said and (2) that she was more concerned about my being satisfied with my purchase than her earning a quick commission.

While both Grace’s integrity and detailed knowledge of what was actually on the market were impressive, where she really shone was once we made an offer. She explained the whole escrow process to me from beginning to end. She helped us figure out what sort of offer to make and helped us negotiate with very difficult sellers. She talked me down, whenever I worked myself up into a tizzy. We ended up getting the house for significantly less than it listed for, largely because of Grace.

K. K.

Oakland, CA

Jim Farber & Melissa Graviss (12/3/2010)

12/3/2010

After 8 years of looking for a house, we met Grace and found our house.

For whatever reasons, our bids with other agents got close but never were accepted. Grace got us our house on our very first bid together. If only we had found her sooner!

Grace understood our needs and our limitations right away and seemed to really get what we were looking for. She asked all the right questions and made us come up with some tough answers. Just one month after working together, we had our house and 30 days later, we moved in. Grace was our fearless leader throughout the home buying process. From negotiation tactics to mortgage and inspection help, we literally could not have done it without Grace and her very strong contact list. Through the process, Grace was our unflappable rock. She gets our highest recommendation.

We love our new home and truly have Grace to thank for it.

Jim Farber & Melissa Graviss

Oakland, CA

R.W. (12/1/2010)

12/1/2010

I would highly recommend Grace Bishop at Red Oak Realty on Solano Avenue. She was very patient with us in our search for a house and took the time to understand what we were looking for. She narrowed down the search and showed us only the houses that fit our search perimeters instead of everything on the market! In fact Grace’s great customer service continues to date even after the purchase of our home. She continues to be a great resource for anything house related. Grace is very warm and yet a true professional.

R.W.

El Cerrito, CA

Elsa M. (4/13/2010)

4/13/2010

Grace has a dedication to her client that is immeasurable. I never felt overwhelmed. She has an awareness of the local market and what it takes to sell a house in the area. Now that the is sold, I miss hanging out with her.

Elsa M.

El Cerrito, CA

Bill D. (1/7/2010)

1/7/2010

Grace Bishop is a real pro. A lot of money changes hands in Bay Area real estate and the profession attracts a certain amount of dabblers and lazy hopefuls. However, when it comes to the biggest purchase most of us ever make you want someone with the experience and resources to make sure your plans and dreams do not fall through. When my wife and I bought our house in Berkeley in 2004 it was a very frustrating experience! We took a long time getting our feet wet and worked with three agents (the first was inexperienced, the second was pushy and did not listen to our needs) and made a dozen unsuccessful offers before finally buying a home. We liked the agent that handled that transaction but she was from outside the area and when it came time to sell in 2009 we thought we could do better with someone very dialed-in to the local market. With some houses in Berkeley still going for top dollar while others sat on the market or sold for bargain basement prices we wanted a smart, successful agent who handled a lot of deals and knew how to get us a great offer. We interviewed several prominent Berkeley/Albany agents and were very impressed with Grace. She came to our first meeting very prepared, with a market analysis, neighborhood sales history and information about how her affiliation with the team at Red Oak Realty could help make a smooth transaction. Once we started the process Grace was always on the ball. You can tell she loves real estate and gets a real charge out of putting a deal together. She made great suggestions for ways to make our house look its best, held our hands through the scary parts and was always respectful and professional.

Once we sold our house and started looking for another we learned that Grace is a great listener too. She never pushed us to look at places that did not fit what/where we wanted and was always happy to show us a place. Grace is a working mom so her team is important. She went on maternity leave before we found a place we wanted to bid on so that transaction was handled by another fantastic Red Oak agent, Sue Arendt. Grace definitely loves to keep her hand in though and despite being on leave, made some calls and suggested some scenarios that ultimately helped a tricky deal go through.

In the end, we sold our house over asking with multiple offers amid the great real estate meltdown and then bought the kind of house we wanted in the exact neighborhood we wanted. I call that a 5 star experience.

Bill D.

Berkeley, CA

Leslie S. (1/2/2010)

1/2/2010

We worked with Grace Bishop at the Red Oak office in Berkeley. This was our first ever home purchase, and she could not have made it go any smoother. Grace was completely on the ball, and was an amazing hand-holder and calmer of nerves. In helping us with this enormous undertaking, she kept track of all the important details, and gave us invaluable advice on everything. We got a great price on a wonderful house that we love.

She was always easy to contact whenever I had questions, and if she didn’t have an immediate answer would get back to me as soon as she did have one.

We’ll definitely be working with her again.

Leslie S.

Berkeley CA

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