- The Washington Times - Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Name: “Gunnar” David Halley

Company: Best Address Real Estate LLC

Address: 1155 30th St. NW, Suite 200, Washington, DC 20007

Phone: 202/965-8914

Fax: 202/965-8660

E-mail: [email protected]

Web site: www.bestaddress.com

Year started: 2005

How did you get started in real estate? In 2002, while I was still practicing law and after two years of searching, I bought a vacant apartment building in Anacostia and spent about a year fixing it up before I rented it. It turned out to be such a positive experience that I was hooked. I wanted to buy another building. I left the law firm and got my real estate license so I could look for more investment properties. Eventually, friends found out I was licensed and asked me to represent them in buying condos, houses and investment properties. One referral led to another.

How long with the current company? Since March

Licenses: Real estate sales in Virginia and the District of Columbia

Associations: Greater Capital Area Association of Realtors, District of Columbia Bar Association, Washington D.C. Association of Realtors, National Association of Realtors, Metropolitan Regional Information Systems Inc.

Greatest accomplishment in the past 12 months: I led a coalition of neighbors in opposing a development of houses on my block in Georgetown that originally would have been completely inconsistent with the character of this historic district. We were quite active at all levels of regulatory review of the project in trying to modify the house construction plans to make the design more consistent with the historic properties in the neighborhood, as well as to save the beautiful mature trees that the developer originally intended to cut down. After two years, I helped to negotiate a compromise settlement that allows the developer to construct houses and turn a profit. However, the designs of the houses were revised to be more consistent with the historic character of the neighborhood. Most important, we were able to save the trees.

What is your area of specialty? Buyers in Northwest Washington and Capitol Hill.

Highest-priced home sold: $650,000

Most memorable house: The memorable part of every transaction comes at the moment of discovering that “this is the place.” After looking through many properties with my clients, I can always tell the moment that my client has found a new home. The reaction and the look on their faces as we walk through the property tell me immediately, “We found it,” sometimes even before they realize it.

Worst experience: I represented the buyer of a condominium in the District who used a lender unfamiliar with the area. I always check in constantly with the lenders throughout the contract period — and before — to ensure that everything is on track. I want any issues resolved well before settlement. This lender repeatedly assured me that everything was on schedule, even up to the day before settlement. However, on the day of settlement, the loan had not yet gone through, and the lender would not answer my phone calls or the calls of my client. It turns out there were a lot of problems that the lender was hiding from me. We eventually closed on the property two days late, thanks to an understanding seller, but not without a lot of heartburn and problems that would not have occurred had the lender been more forthright. I always emphasize to my clients the importance of selecting the right lender.

Age: 38

Pets: Four dogs, Baloo, Millie, Zeke and Linguine, ranging from 150 pounds to 25 pounds.

Education: Bachelor of science in foreign service and international economics, Georgetown University, 1990; doctor of laws, Georgetown University Law Center, 1995.

Community service/outside interests: Active in historic preservation efforts within Georgetown; animal rescue efforts; oil painting; photography

Last book read: “The World Is Flat,” by Thomas Friedman

Last movie seen: “Three Needles”

What kind of car do you drive? Toyota Sienna

What is your personal dream house? Although I am a strong advocate of historic preservation and love historic properties — indeed, I live in a 200-year-old house — my dream house would be a spacious, in-town mid-to-late-20th-century contemporary with large, open interior spaces and a generous yard for the dogs.

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