December 21, 2007

$1 million, 500 sqft, Belmont – panic room in the Bay Area? Property Details
3858 W Naughton AV, Belmont,CA,94002 – $995,000

3858bel.jpg1 Beds 917 Sq.Ft. Aprx. 2 Car Garage MLS#: 765725
1.0 Baths 12,750 Lot Size List Date: 2007-11-30

What’s new on MLS-2: Search by % Price Drop // Search by “MOTIVATED SELLERS”

Description – 3858 W Naughton AV, Belmont,CA,94002
Brand new Mediterranean hideaway on 12,750 sq lot. 500 sq ft living (NO TYPO-500 SQ FT) Secluded cul-de-sac location. Unobstructed San Francisco Views. Extensive deck space w/outdoor fireplace. Under construction now! Estimated completion February 2008.

That’s right folks – not a typo! Sure it says 917 sqft in the listing, but really it’s 500 sqft. This is important because in the Bay Area, we’re so into the environment that we look for smaller places so we can buy less stuff and be more green.

Here’s what I’m guessing, the house itself is 500 sqft, but the garage is 417 sqf – hence the 917 sqft. Just check out the picture above! That’s huge! It’s almost big enough for a second residence (nudgenudgewinkwink).

Either that, or maybe the 500 sqft is above ground, but the remaining 417 sqft is below ground – you know, part of your “hideaway” as mentioned above. Can someone say, panic room?

Thanks to Burbed Reader Ed for this find!

Comments (23) -- Posted by: burbed @ 5:40 am

23 Responses to “$1 million, 500 sqft, Belmont – panic room in the Bay Area?”

  1. ex-sunnyvale-renter Says:

    Panic room LOL!! more like, rent out the garage for $1500 a month, gro-lights extra.

  2. gfw Says:

    WTF? Why would you build a house of 500 square feet? Can anyone clue me in? Why go through the trouble?

  3. gfw Says:

    Maybe the agent meant “5000 sq ft living (NO TYPO-5000 SQ FT)”

    he he

  4. et_tu_alt_a? Says:

    I think it’s illegal even for realtors ™ to include the garage sq ft in the total for the house?

  5. ex-sunnyvale-renter Says:

    Illegal? That concept is sooooo 20th century…..

  6. sg Says:

    Seriously, what kinda people would enjoy a “500 sq ft living” for $1 million? Any idea?

  7. New Zealand Renter Says:

    Seriously, there is one use for such a property. It is a place to meet the mistress. In certain circles “hideaway” is the code word for such properties. It sounds less tacky than love nest or love shack. Therefore the need for a two car garage. For a wayward husband from Atherton, a million is pocket change.

  8. sonarrat Says:

    This is a land bubble, not a real estate bubble, so this would make sense for the builder. Less clear is why they wouldn’t just sell the parcel instead of trying to build a property that just degrades its value, if anything..

  9. ex-sunnyvale-renter Says:

    yes that and a good place to conduct a lot of deals that are highly profitable but you don’t want to do at your regular house or office. Distributor to dealer drug sales, high-end whore house, S&M dungeon setup, organ harvesting, that sort of thing.

  10. RealEstater Says:

    Why can’t they build houses like they do in other states? It’s not like there isn’t enough lot to build on here. This type of style is prevalent in CA, and just looks like shit. Do you even need an architect for this? All you can see from the front is the huge garage door.

    The only person more stupid than the architect is the realtor. Either he doesn’t know a typo if it hits him in the face, or he is seriously math-challenged.

  11. mtv-renter Says:

    They build these ugly houses around here because we have some of the most strict building codes in the country. Yes, you “own” the house, but the city and state tell you what color, shape, size, it must be, how far it must be set back from the curb, what kind of trees must be planted, etc. Some cities actually send inspectors yearly to make sure you’re taking appropriate care of the plants in your back yard.

  12. ex-sunnyvale-renter Says:

    California almost mandates the “snout house” design. A “snout house” is a house that looks like no people live there, only a car. There’s a prominent garage, like a snout, out front, and it’s hard to find the door for the people to go into. In a really good “snout house” design, the house will fail the “trick-or-treat test” where on Halloween, no one can find the door.

    The residents will drive their car into the house, exit the car and enter the house through the garage to house doorway. As little contact with the actual neighborhood as possible is the aim.

    The front door as such is generally only used by visitors – and ideally they should have to call the house’s occupants on their cell phone while standing in the driveway for directions to the hard-to-locate front door.

    When you have a true “snout house”, you have truly arrived.

  13. Markor Says:

    After reading many of the topics/comments on this excellent blog, I have to wonder why y’all don’t move to my town, Seattle. Seems that house prices are as much as half off in Seattle. If you’re a software engineer, Seattle salaries look about the same (I read the salary comments) and there’s high demand here. Google and Yahoo are ramping up here. I’ve been to the Bay area many times, and while there’s a lot to like, Seattle is pretty dang nice too. Summer is perfect (typically sunny & 70s), winter is 40s, you get used to the rain that makes it green. Mountains/hiking are close. Right now in Bellevue, a relatively safe close-in suburb of Seattle with good schools, there’s a 2700 sq. ft. 1950s ranch w/ basement in decent shape, no garage, 8K sq. ft. lot, near Microsoft, for $460K. (Nope, not mine, just an example of a relatively good deal here.) Prices are down about 10 to 20% in the last six months. We need y’all to slow down our fall!

  14. Markor Says:

    Oh yeah: and no state income tax. (Property taxes are about 1% of the house value, sales tax is about 9.2%, high gas taxes.)

  15. ex-sunnyvale-renter Says:

    Markor everyone thinks I live in Sunnyvale but I’m something like 1200 miles from there. And freezing my butt off right now. I’m a bum on food stamps, trying to learn guitar, so I may well invade Seattle someday. And apply for Food Stamps lol.

    The class lines in the US aren’t just firm, they’re separated by barriers that make the old Berlin Wall proud. I’m tired of fighting and just falling behind, so I’m kind of planning to be the best bum I can be!

    I will never own a house. I will never have to worry about a 401k, But I might ask you for a quarter someday!

  16. Austin Powers Says:

    es-sunnyvale renter….You have me entrigued…..where do you live.. I digg to read you on Patricks blog as well. You make me laugh.

    Did i hear 1 millllllllion dallars

  17. ex-sunnyvale-renter Says:

    Austin – I’m living out in Can’t-Find-Me arizona right now.

    Seriously, I pity the poor bastard who tries to find me….

    This is for a couple of reasons – it sounded better than being homeless in the bay area, where the plan would have been to put my stuff in a storage, sleep various places in the bushes, and play street music/try a bit of caricature art at farmer’s markets. And rent’s free here, do a few chores, no biggie. We eat real cheap so my food stamps although only $150 a month are a real boost.

    The other reason was, it sounded better than going into debtor’s prison.

    However, everyone keeps telling me the US doesn’t have a debtor’s prison any more, that they stopped that in the 1860s or so.

    However, I have an amount of debt that’s mathematically impossible to pay off. Therefore, I will have to declare bankruptcy, and the IRS debt I have needs to age a couple of years before that can be taken care of.

    So, I need to live “under the radar” for a while.

    And, I try not to think about this, but the forgiven debt will probably be taxed by the IRS, which will mean another mathematically impossible amount to repay…..

    It basically comes down to …. because I have failed, I am probably on the US gov’t enemies list for life, effectively…..

    So I am hiding out here, spending a lot of time depressed, actually. I need to fool around with a number of things and see if I can develop a good “street skill” that I can earn money on, off the books and off the radar screen. It would be wonderful to get good enough at something, caricaturing or playing the kazoo or any damned thing, that I can escape the US and make a go of it in a civilized country. People with *really* good skills can do that, actually.

    If I can get good at guitar, caricaturing, musical saw, any damned thing, that I can escape the US somehow and make a go of it overseas, then I’ll have won.

    I except the borders of the US to become rather airtight though, and so am probably headed for a life of “internal exile”. That means staying out of the sight of the gov’t goons and making little, living in little.

    In the case of “internal exile”, the best hope is for a colossal enough Depression or world war that it shakes things up really well, maybe a new gov’t will announce amnesty for those on the enemies list like myself (and millions of others) or it just gets chaotic enough that there is effectively no gov’t in most of the countryside.

    Think Europe, going through WWI, Depression, then WWII. We need that much chaos to unsnarl the social and monetary problems we have now.

    So, I and many others, gradually becoming a legion of others, I guess are kind of hoping for this. Thus the popularity of “doomer” sites like peakoil, theoildrum,, and so on.

    It says something about the Empire when those who’d normally be very loyal citizens pray for its downfall!

  18. burbed Says:


    Uh, Seattle isn’t in the Bay Area? Why would anyone want to move to a place that’s not the Bay Area?

  19. ex-sunnyvale-renter Says:

    Haha yeah …… Seattle?? They’re probably still making LAND there… sniff!

  20. sonarrat Says:

    As soon as some developer gets approval to build on all that open land west of 280, all the homeowners in the area are screwed. And it will probably happen sooner or later.

  21. Austin Powers Says:

    sonarrat…sorry that is all open space forever i beleive it is in a land trust

  22. ex-sunnyvale-renter Says:

    I agree in thinking it’s a land trust…… but trusts and treaties and things like that have a way of being broken.

  23. Desten Says:

    Well one it could be a weekend home or Vacation home it could also be a workshop or art studio and there is room to add on

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