- The Washington Times - Friday, November 28, 2008

Name:Gretchen Koitz

Company: The Koitz Group, Long & Foster Real Estate Inc.

Address: 4650 East West Highway, Bethesda, MD 20814

Phone: 301/215-6879

Fax: 301/907-6610

E-mail address: gk@koitzgroup.com

Web site: www.koitzgroup.com

Year started: 1987

How did you get started in real estate? I actually got my license in 1977, right after the birth of my first child. I figured I could nurse him and then run out and sell a house! It didn’t take me long to realize that I was seriously wrong, and so I “put off” diving into the business for another 10 years.

How long have you been with the current company? 13 years

Licenses and designations: Licensed in Maryland and the District

Greatest accomplishment in the past 12 months: My husband and I just moved into our dream house, after two years of planning, designing and building. It was really his project, much more than mine, but I would like to think that I shared in this accomplishment.

Area of specialty: Lower Montgomery County (Bethesda, Chevy Chase and Kensington) and Northwest

Most memorable house: I tend to focus on the people, much more than on the house. I’ve been extremely fortunate to have been involved with some really wonderful people in the more than 20 years that I’ve been in business.

Describe your worst experience buying or selling a house: One of the stories that I still tell happened probably a dozen years ago. I had worked with a couple for a few months, first selling their Silver Spring home, and then helping them find their Bethesda home. We thought we had made it to the end of the process, and I was to meet them at the Bethesda house for the final walk-through prior to settlement. I got there first and, upon opening the door, noticed that the entry foyer floor was wet and had what appeared to be small pieces of insulation sitting in the puddles. When I looked up, I saw a large hole in the ceiling on the second-story landing. What had happened was that an air conditioning unit that was housed in the attic had leaked (the house had been vacant for months) and the result was water damage on three levels. I had to wait for the buyers in the driveway to calmly inform them of the “problem.” After a couple of days of panic, calm heads prevailed, and the purchasers are still living in (and loving!) that house.

Family: Husband, David, and adult sons, Jason and Kevin

Describe your personal dream house: We are fortunate enough to be living in our dream house, thanks to the architectural genius of Glenn Chen Fong and the building expertise of John Thompson and Keith Fisher of Congressional Design/Build.

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