Newsletter March 2018 – 19 Feb 02:34 PM

Posted on: March 1st, 2018 | By Cliff Keith | Cliff's Notes on Real Estate | No Comments

Newsletter March 2018 – 19 Feb 02:34 PM
Cliff’s Notes on real estate…

March 2018

Dear Friend,

March is that time of year when we’re tired of the cold, and every warm day makes us want to break free! It’s a great time for spring cleaning and day dreaming. This month’s newsletter is filled with fun information to pass the time while you gear up for warmer weather just around the corner.

This month, you’ll find a selection of useful information, like:
• Why your cell phone drains your data, and how to stop it.
• A brief history, and a peek at the future of mobile homes.
• An exploration of springs (not Spring).
• A clever way to cook Brussels sprouts quickly.
• And more!

The spring buying and selling season is approaching. If you’re planning to buy or sell a house in 2018, then let’s find a few minutes to talk soon. It’ll help you get your plans ready when the HOT Spring Season begins. Just call and we’ll get together to plan.

Thanks, stay warm, and give me a call! Talk with you soon.

Your friend in the real estate business,


Cliff Keith
650-346-7366 Cell/Text


  •  Find the Strength in Your Weakness
     Kid-Friendly Exercises
     March Quiz Question
     The History of Spring
     Does Raising Your Phone Improve Reception?
     Fast Skillet Brussels Sprouts
     Stop Your Phone from Draining Data
     What’s 2+2?
     Should You Pay by Cash or Credit?
     A Brief History of Mobile Homes
     How to Hold Keys for Self-Defense

Find the Strength in Your Weakness

Newsletter March 2018 – 19 Feb 02:34 PM
Judo Match

A 10-year-old boy had lost his left arm in an accident. He wanted to grow stronger, so he began lessons with a wise judo master. In time the boy improved. But after months of training, he couldn’t understand why the master had taught him only one move.

“Master,” the boy said, “Shouldn’t I learn more moves?”
“This is the only move you’ll ever need,” the master replied.
Not quite understanding, but believing in the wisdom of his teacher, the boy kept training.More months later, the master took the boy to his first tournament. The boy surprised himself by easily winning all his initial matches. Then came the final match.

This time, his opponent was bigger, stronger, and more experienced. For a while, the boy with one arm appeared to be overmatched. Concerned for the boy’s safety, the referee was about to stop the match. But the master intervened. “No,” he said. “Let him continue.”
Soon, the boy’s opponent made a critical mistake and dropped his guard. Instantly, the boy used his move to pin him. The boy won the match and the tournament.

On the way home, the boy summoned the courage to ask, “Master, how did I win the tournament with only one move?”

“You won for two reasons,” the teacher answered. “First, you’ve mastered one of the most difficult throws in judo. Second, the only known defense for that move is for your opponent to grip your left arm.”

The boy’s biggest weakness had become his biggest strength. 

March Quiz Question

Q: How many time zones are there in the world?

Everyone who texts, emails or calls in the correct answer by the last day of this month will be entered a drawing for a $30 gift certificate to Starbucks


February Question

Q:  When is the next Leap Year?

A:  In 2020.

Congratulations to:

Melanie Reitzel of Pacifica

Kid-Friendly Exercises

Newsletter March 2018 – 19 Feb 02:34 PM
Child exercising

As worries about obesity fill the media, parents are taking more active steps to ensure that their children learn good exercise habits. Here are a few simple child exercise routines from

  • Faux Pushups. Have your child get into a raised pushup position. Then say the alphabet, high-fiving your child with each letter (alternating hands).
  • Sit-ups. Take a ball and lie down facing each other, feet touching. Sit up together and pass the ball to your child at the top of the sit-up, then go back down. Repeat back and forth for as long as you can.
  • Water balloon walk. Fill a water balloon and have your child hold it between her knees. Then try walking without bursting it or dropping it.
  • Kid Lunging. Have your child take the longest step he can with one foot, then pause all stretched out. Then stand up and take a step with the other foot. Have him lunge all the way to your car or the park.
  • Your child lies on the floor, lifts her legs, and moves then in a circular motion like riding a bicycle. Ask her to say “ha-ha-ha” in time with the movements. This can be particularly effective in helping younger kids head off tantrums.

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The History of Spring

Spring is as good a time as any to discuss springs. From ordinary screen door closers to cars’ shock absorbers, we use them every day, but seldom think about what an innovation they were in human history. Did you know that even your tweezers are a form of spring? Anything that stores and then releases mechanical (vs. electrical or magnetic) energy is a spring. In 1676 British physicist Robert Hooke developed Hooke’s law, which states that the force a spring exerts is proportional to its extension.

Newsletter March 2018 – 19 Feb 02:34 PM

One of the first forms of spring was the bow (and arrow). In the Bronze Age, more sophisticated spring devices were developed, in particular tweezers. During the third century B.C., leaf springs were used to operate catapults. In the early 15th century, coiled springs were developed for use in door locks. By the 16th century, tiny coil springs were used in time-pieces, allowing clocks to become portable, eventually becoming watches. Prior to this innovation, weights were used to power time-telling machinery. Springs have been truly one of the engines of modern human progress.

There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you.—Maya Angelou




(415) 805-6899




Does Raising Your Phone Improve Reception?

Newsletter March 2018 – 19 Feb 02:34 PM
Raising your hand, does it help with phone reception?

We’ve all done it. We’re hiking in the woods, visiting a friend, or shopping in a big box store somewhere, and we can’t get a signal. So, we instinctively raise our phones in the air, as if there were a hidden wave of receptivity floating overhead, if only we could reach it. Does it help?

According to experts, no. There is no connection between cell reception and raising your phone into the air just above your head. Reception is “mostly homogenous” around us, and lifting your arm won’t change this. However, you may get more bars by walking around. Cell reception could be being affected by structures, such as glass doors and metal in walls, so moving away from these blockages can improve reception.

Raising your arm to get better reception can go into the same book as pushing the elevator button repeatedly, an act that doesn’t change the elevator’s programming one bit.

Fast Skillet Brussels Sprouts

These days when people think Brussels sprouts, they think about roasting. But what if you don’t want to wait 30 minutes for your sprouts to roast? Here’s a trick to cut the time by two-thirds. Try it tonight! (And by the way, it really is Brussels sprouts, as in “Brussels, Belgium.”)

Use smallish sprouts and start them in a cold non-stick pan. Forget about preheating your pan. Why? Because if you add the Brussels sprouts to a hot pan with hot oil, the outsides will crisp too quickly and the insides will never cook through. When you start them in a cold pan, however, the searing process takes longer and the veggies have more time to get tender. Here’s how you do it:

Add an even layer of halved Brussels sprouts to a nonstick skillet, cut sides down. Drizzle them all over with olive oil, cover the skillet, and place over medium-high heat. Cook until the sprouts are bright green (about 5 minutes), then uncover and continue to cook until the cut sides are deeply golden (about 2 more minutes). Season them off heat and voila! All that’s left to do is eat them. Done in under 10 minutes instead of 30.  

Stop Your Phone from Draining Data

Phones can chew through data without you realizing it. Here’s how to reduce data usage:

  1. Turn off “push notifications.” Go to Settings > Apps > Open each app and check/uncheck the box that says Show (or Allow) Notifications.
  2. Change your Wi-Fi settings. Make sure some services run only over Wi-Fi. Go to Settings > Data Usage > Open each app and check the box that restricts app background data to Wi-Fi only.
  3. Turn off video auto-play. Change your settings in individual apps like Facebook and Instagram so videos do not automatically start playing.
  4. Data-based text services. If you are not connected to Wi-Fi, try not to use apps like WhatsApp, as it uses data to send text messages.
  5. Beware of “free” apps. Free apps can often use up more data than the premium (paid) version, as they generally have more advertisements.
  6. Manually close apps. Pressing the Back or Home button to exit apps does not fully close them. Make sure apps that use GPS (maps) and streaming (YouTube, Apple Music, Spotify) are fully closed. Each phone has a different process for this.

What’s 2+2?

A shifty boss was interviewing applicants for the position of his divisional manager. He devised a simple test to select the most suitable person for the job. He asked each applicant, “What is two and two?”

Newsletter March 2018 – 19 Feb 02:34 PM
Smiling Face

The first interviewee was a journalist. His answer was “Twenty-two.”

The second applicant was an engineer. She pulled out a slide rule and showed the answer to be between 3.999 and 4.001.

Next came a lawyer. He stated that in the case of Jenkins v Brown, two and two was proven to be four.

The last applicant was an accountant. When asked, “How much is two and two?” he got up, went to the door and closed it, then came back and sat down. He leaned across the desk and said in a low voice…”How much do you want it to be?”

Imagine me as your real estate consultant…

What I do for you is invest my time consulting, negotiating, and organizing the details of your transaction because I want you to have a superb experience that will cause you to want to introduce me to the people you care about most.

The purpose of my business is referrals, which means I must bring the type of value that makes you feel comfortable introducing me to the people you know that need my help.

I thank you sincerely, and so will the people you introduce to me.

Cliff Keith    

Should You Pay by Cash or Credit?

Many people believe they should save before buying to avoid debt. However, experts say there is actually no one-size-fits-all answer to the cash-versus-credit question. The answer is actually tied to a series of either/or choices with multiple variables.

For instance, saving up to buy a television or washing machine makes sense, because you avoid interest that adds to the bottom-line price. But what if you need that washing machine now because yours just broke? Debt may be your only option. In this case, it makes sense to save up for voluntary purchases and “reserve” your debt for emergencies.

What if you’re saving for a television, and the price is slated to rise by more than the interest you would have paid to charge it in the first place? Will you save more in the long run by purchasing now? What if the TV is on sale for no money down and 0% interest for 12 months? Will you be able to repay the entire amount in 12 months?

These are typical factors to consider when weighing the pros and cons of your cash-versus-credit decision. The important thing to remember is that credit is not a substitute for savings. Avoid spontaneous purchases, never feel pressured to buy now, and always look at the bigger picture of your finances. Avoid buying on credit based on your belief that your income will rise in coming months or years. Make your purchase based on actual income and savings, not future income.

Have you Heard?

For subscribers to Cliff’s Notes on real estate… ONLY!

Menlo Park Rental: One-Bedroom Loft Apt. 2- Parking Off-street parking, Close to Burgess Park, 4-plex w/on-site laundry $2,700/Mo. Not in MLS

Very desirable area with private patio and large yard. NO pets please

Call me to find out more information on this lovely affordable rental.

A History of Mobile Homes

Mobile homes have a long, rich history across the world. Gypsy and peddler wagons were the first mobile homes, drawn by horses, which dated back at least to the 1500s.

Fast forward to the early 1900s, and the development of the automobile. From there, it was a short jump from horse-drawn covered wagons to mobile-homes. Some innovative early automobile owners literally built houses on top of their early Fords. In the 1940’s came the advent of the camping trailer. And after World War II, the mobile home industry exploded as tens of thousands of returning soldiers and transient workers returned home and needed affordable housing.

By the early 1950s, manufacturers were building a 10-foot wide boxy version that became the staple of the maligned mobile home park. Double-wides debuted in the 1960s.

Throughout this early life of the modern mobile home, there was very little construction or safety oversight. Mobile home parks were allowed to grow organically, with little attention to crowding or other comforts or safety features.

Newsletter March 2018 – 19 Feb 02:34 PM
Newsletter March 2018 – 19 Feb 02:34 PM

The combination of poor construction and crowded mobile home parks gave rise to a negative impression of mobile homes that is only recently starting to turn around, especially with the advent of the tiny home movement.

In the 1980s, the mobile home industry was finally regulated by building codes. The industry changed from mobile homes to manufactured homes as a way to distinguish modern construction and safety practices from older mobile home industry practices.

How to Hold Keys for Self-Defense

Many of us are told by our parents to put our keys between our fingers when walking to our cars, especially alone at night. The technique creates a weapon, known as “The Wolverine,” which looks like claws poking from a closed fist. However, self-defense experts say this is not necessarily the best approach. The problem is that if you’re at the point where you’re trying to jab at someone with your fist, they’re already too close to you.

In addition, the edge of your keys can hurt your hand, making you drop your keys. It’s better to hold the keys like a dagger, where you can stab downward. Or hold multiple keys so that one extends both out the top and bottom of your fist.

Cliff’s Notes on real estate…

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Cliff’s Notes on real estate…

Cliff Keith

1250 San Carlos Ave #101

San Carlos, CA 94070

Q: What two bows can every girl have near her hand?

I don’t have the foggiest…

A: Her elbows!


This newsletter is intended for entertainment purposes only.  Credit is given to the authors of various articles that are reprinted when the original author is known.  Any omission of credit to an author is purely unintentional and should not be construed as plagiarism or literary theft. 

Copyright 2017 Cliff Keith dba SF Bay Homes with Today | Sotheby’s International Realty.  This information is solely advisory, and should not be substituted for medical, legal, financial or tax advice.  Any and all decisions and actions must be done through the advice and counsel of a qualified physician, attorney, financial advisor

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