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Posts from the ‘SLO County Locals’ Category


SLO County Locals Blog

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Columns from the Local Business Community:

Katrina Borges
Uniquely SLO

Holly Dickson
Manufacturing & Tech

David Cryden 
Certified Financial Planner

Claudia Harmon Worthen 
EcoPlanners, LLC
Green Living, Interior Design

Scott Brennan
Access Publishing Outdoor/Active lifestyle

Sarah Day
San Luis Kitchen Co. Kitchen/Bathroom Design

Eric Foronjy 
Hague Quality Water
Water quality, facts, figures

The Best Post-Work Hangouts on the Central Coast


The Central Coast offers plenty of relaxing post-work options for discounted foor or dranks, or the beautiful outdoors. Here are a few of our favorites…  READ MORE


Recent Articles

(Jul 18) – Mid-Year Market Update

(Jun 10) – Kitchen of the Month: A great kitchen becomes GREAT!

(May 29) – Do you Need Long-Term Care Insurance?

(May 16) – 10 Easy Tips for a Beautiful, Water-Efficient Garden

(May 14) – The Best Post-Work Activities on the Central Coast

(May 2) – Is the Local Housing Market Healthy? (Yes!)

(Apr 28) – Kitchen of the Month: Beach Cottage Renovation

(Mar 11) – People of SLO’s Farmers Market



Business    ||    Events    ||    News    ||    People    ||    Places

Columns by Molly Schiff    ||    Columns by Rylan Stewart    ||    Columns by Holly Dickson


Editor in Chief, Columnist: Rylan Stewart ([email protected]

We deal in housing, but it takes more than a building to call a place home… it is the people, events, and businesses. So we started the SLO County Locals Blog to explore the spirit of the Central Coast.


Yes, the Housing Market is Healthy. Here is Why:

David Cryden 

DWC Photo 3 6 7 13Blakeslee & Blakeslee 
Co-Owner, Vice President & Certified Financial Planner

Lehman Brothers fell on September 15, 2008. The real estate market had already peaked out and was in decline by then. We saw the world take the equivalent to the proverbial economic tumble off a cliff. Times got much tougher.

In many respects, we’ve nearly fully recovered from that terribly difficult time. The stock markets are near or at all-time highs. The economy and employment are much healthier today than in years past. The Federal Reserve Bank is backing off the various programs they implemented to help bolster the economy and the credit markets. In some real estate markets, prices have fully recovered from their near death decline of the mid-2000s.

Where do I think the real estate markets stand today?



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Kitchen of the Month: A Beach Cottage

San Luis Kitchen Banner

b2By Sarah Day
San Luis Kitchen Co.

This is the happy little story of a young couple and their very first house. Recently married, the young couple needed a nest of their very own and they found the ideal home near the beach in Los Osos!

However the kitchen was less than ideal. Old yellowed cabinets, scalloped trim, and vinyl floors were not the aesthetic the new homeowners had dreamed of.

Counter space was at a minimum – the stove was set cheek and jowl with the refrigerator and the sink barely two feet away.

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Should You Own Bond Funds?

The ten year government Treasury bond saw a historically low yield of roughly 1.60% during 2013. Since that point, it has risen to over 3%. As I write today’s tip, the ten year government Treasury bond sits at 2.69%.

Clearly, some of that almost doubling of yield came from fear of the unknown. Nobody knows exactly how long rates will stay where they are today. Nor, do they know how high they will go before they peak or when that will happen.

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Do You Want to be a Better Investor?

“Investment is most intelligent when it is most businesslike. “ – The Intelligent Investor by Benjamin Graham.

This quote was originally written by Benjamin Graham. He is one of the key men in the great investment careers of Warren Buffett and Jonathan Bell Lovelace.

As many of you know, Buffett runs Berkshire Hathaway. To many, he is now known to most as one of the great investors of all time.

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Is High Frequency Trading Affecting Your Long Term Mutual Fund Investments?

While I don’t have the answer to this question at this point, I do have a few thoughts to share on High Frequency Trading (HFT). The whole idea of high frequency trading in the markets is interesting stuff indeed.

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Are You Taking Care of Your Business?

By David W. Cryden, VP, CFP
Blakeslee & Blakeslee

Have you ever had a problem that you thought you solved only to find out that’s not the case? Or, you took care of some type of business only to find out that it wasn’t done properly and they are saying it’s your fault?

One of the most common things we do here at my practice is take good notes. Without them, we don’t have a chance of having something corrected when solving a problem or getting something done. I teach my team to dot every I and cross every T. We all take notes in great detail so we can solve issues if they arise and help our clients get the service or results we all desire.

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Want to Save Money on Your Prescription Medications?

By David W. Cryden, VP, CFP
Blakeslee & Blakeslee

As many of you know, I’m a survivor of emergency open heart surgery. I had my aortic value replaced with a mechanical one on October 23, 2003. My aorta was also repaired as I had an aneurism. Thankfully today, I am alive and well. One of the repercussions of the surgery was that I am now a lifelong consumer of three prescription medications.

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Search engine optimization basics for small business

Get your business found on Google.

Get your business found on Google.

By Scott Brennan
Access Publishing

Why should you care about search engine optimization? Well, if you are in business, you want customers to find you online. In 2014, 97 percent of Americans used the internet to search for local businesses. Search engine optimization, or SEO, is a fancy term for getting your business to rank higher in Google search results.

Have you heard the joke? “Where is the best place to hide a dead body? On the second page of Google!” That’s because 75 percent of Internet users don’t scroll past the first page. Your business better be there or it’s as good as dead.

You can pay to be on the first page  of results with Google Adwords, but surveys show that 80 percent of users ignore paid ads. The place you want to be is in the organic results. Those are website listings and Google+ Local listings.

Here are a few SEO basics to get you started

1. Claim your Google+ Local listing

San Luis Obispo SEO

Example of a Google+ Local listing – Dr. Douglass Ng, DDS

It’s hard to believe, but of the 50 million Google business listings, less than 20 percent have been claimed. These are free listings and show up in local searches. Claim and verify yours. Go in and fill out as many additional details as possible. Be sure Google has your correct name, address, phone number and website address. Add your photos, description and categories. Find your free listing here: Google+ Local.

2. Optimize your website

Good SEO is about clearly communicating who you are, where you are and what you do. Update your website to be crystal clear about these three things. Your website’s title should be something simple like: “company name | location/service | phone number.” Example: “Douglas Ng, DDS | San Luis Obispo Dentist | (805) 544-1246.” The next most important thing is to include your location and category in your website’s headline. Example: “Dentist serving San Luis Obispo.” Then be sure your full physical address is in the footer of your website. For more detailed advice read this article on advanced local SEO tips.

3. Create online listings

Claim you company's listings.

Claim your listings.

Internet listings are a great way to improve your online presence. Be sure you have accurate and complete listings on Facebook, Yelp, Yahoo, Bing and your local Chamber of Commerce. Once those are complete, keep creating more online listings for your business. Be consistent with your business name, address, phone and URL. These listings will communicate to Google that you are a local authority in your field.

4. Write great content

The final step here is to write great content on your website and share it through your social media. Share tips and advice about your products or services. Write columns and articles and post them to your blog on a regular basis. When you have something newsworthy, send it as a press release to the local media and online through press release distribution services.

When you claim your Google+ Local listing, optimize your website, create online listings and write great content, the search engines will take notice and reward you with better rankings.

Come to a free local SEO presentation

You’re invited to learn more about how customers are looking for local businesses online and how to rank better in local search results. Please join Access Publishing for a presentation about local search engine optimization. The next one is Friday, April 25, 2014, at 10 a.m. at RRM Design, 3765 S Higuera St., San Luis Obispo, CA 93401. Call (805) 226-9890 to RSVP, or register online here: Access Local Search presentation.

Author is a local SEO expert. His company, Access Publishing, provides web design and SEO services to over 100 businesses in San Luis Obispo County. You can reach him at (805) 226-9890.


Are Common Stocks as “Tangible” as Real Estate?

By David W. Cryden, VP, CFP
Blakeslee & Blakeslee

For many years, I’ve been making the argument that common stocks are a tangible asset like real estate. People sometimes look at me funny wondering, what does that mean?

David Cryden 

DWC Photo 3 6 7 13Blakeslee & Blakeslee 
Co-Owner, Vice President & Certified Financial Planner

Some people connect with real estate in the sense that it’s a tangible asset. You can buy it, walk around in it, and touch it. Many of us own our homes, giving us a position in a tangible asset.

When you think about real estate, what most people don’t think about it how your ownership, or position, in the property is represented? The fact that you have ownership in a piece of real estate is proven through what’s called a grant deed. Like a common stock, a grant deed is a piece of paper.

My thinking is that ownership in a portion of a company, large or small, is represented by a stock certificate or statement –a piece of paper. Like a piece of real estate, it’s also a recorded document. In the case of common stocks, your ownership is recorded through the transfer agent. With real estate, your grant deed is recorded with the county recorder.

In the case of both real estate and common stocks, ownership is represented by a piece of paper – either a grant deed or stock certificate or statement.

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Cal Poly-Made Products


Cal Poly’s motto is “Learn by Doing,” and it lives up to that motto not only by allowing students to create real products, but also by making those student-made products available for sale.

Almost anything you can imagine – from honey, to milk, to wine – is created during classes, packaged, and then sold to the general public.

This slideshow shows all the products I was able to find on this particular day on campus.

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