It's hard to be a good dinner guest when the tableside conversation turns to the matter of real estate. I try to hold my tongue, and try not to offer advice–no matter what. So as I squirmed to sit still, with my husband glaring at me across the table with that "don't get involved" look, I couldn't believe the story I was hearing. "It took us 18 months to get our permits for this damn remodel," said the friend of a friend who was our host. "Just when we thought it was a slam dunk–after going through the whole process of listing and looking and not selling, we've just decided that it's easier to remodel." Eighteen months? I can't believe that anyone in Los Angeles wouldn't give up on a project like this even before it began. Is it that complicated? Are they tearing down the hou...
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