April 22, 2009

What does it mean when the lot size does not match?

525 EMBARCADERO Rd, Palo Alto, CA 94301 | MLS# 80912654
525 EMBARCADERO Rd Palo Alto, CA 94301
Price: $950,000

Beds: 2
Baths: 2
Sq. Ft.: 1,044
$/Sq. Ft.: $910
Lot Size: 4,356 Sq. Ft.
Property Type: Detached Single Family
Year Built: 1920
Stories: 1
View: Neighborhood
County: Santa Clara
MLS#: 80912654
Source: MLSListings
Status: Active
On Redfin: 39 days
OPEN HOUSE Sun April 19. This Charming home in desirable Professorville is just minutes away from downtown, library, schools, parks, Caltrain, Stanford University and Hospital. 2 BD/2 BA in main house. Detached building with phone line and half bath that can be used as a home office or artist studio. TOP PALO ALTO SCHOOLS. City record shows lot size 4,548 SqFt.

I thought I’d wrap up this week with a Herve house.

This is an amazing deal frankly. $950,000 in Palo Alto. And you’re actually get an extra building that has half a bath – can you say “office space for a startup”?

But Herve sent this in for two reasons:

1. He wanted to point out that the lot size in this listing is different (smaller!) than the city records. By over 4%. Why would someone list it like this?

2. He thought that this would be interesting for everyone to see:


Egads! A price cut. TSK TSK TSK.

Still, not bad… a 24% appreciation in just 4 years. Another 6 more years and this would be doubled.

Better buy it now! (In part, to figure out that lot size question for us!)

Comments (30) -- Posted by: burbed @ 5:05 am

April 21, 2009

New staging techniques being used by Realtors in San Jose

3036 BETSY Way, San Jose, CA 95133 | MLS# 80903658
3036 BETSY Way San Jose, CA 95133
Price: $289,000

Beds: 3
Baths: 1
Sq. Ft.: 1,165
$/Sq. Ft.: $248
Lot Size: 5,280 Sq. Ft.
Property Type: Detached Single Family
Style: Traditional
Year Built: 1940
Stories: 1
View: Neighborhood
Neighborhood: Berryessa
County: Santa Clara
MLS#: 80903658
Source: MLSListings
Status: Active
On Redfin: 74 days
This is a nicely kept home in North Valley Area, 3 Bedroom, 1 Bath, Hardwood Flooring Throughout, Detached 2 Car Garage, Close to shopping and other facilities, Great Price for Starter Home.

I don’t know about you, but I’m bored of the cliche staging that seems to be all the rage these days. I prefer more deconstructionist staging that reflects the mood of the times.

Burbed reader sonarrat was impressed by the multi-tone station wagon in the driveway.

Me? I’m all about this:


Booyah. The half open gate. The laundry appliance. The dining room chairs on a dining room table. The shanty wood structure.


It’s gritty. It helps you feel like you’re living. You see the chaos and your mind races. And it races to buying this $248 per square foot house because you know it’s only going to go up once you make it de-real. But will you? Isn’t this what those hipsters living in the tenderloin or billyburg would want?

It’s your choice, but you’d better act fast!

Comments (35) -- Posted by: burbed @ 5:48 am

$1.3m in instant equity waiting for you in San Francisco

3548 Fulton, San Francisco, CA 94118 | MLS# 351864
3548 Fulton San Francisco, CA 94118
Price: $229,888

Beds: 0
Baths: –
Sq. Ft.: –
Lot Size: –
Property Type: Tenancy In Common, Studio
Style: Contemporary
Region: San Francisco District 1 (Northwest)
Area: Inner Richmond
County: San Francisco
MLS#: 351864
Source: San Francisco MLS
Status: Active
On Redfin: 69 days
JUST REDUCED! Completly remodelled, Garden Studio w/ Storage & Deeded backyard for pets. New appliances, floors granite counters, subway tile & modern lighting, stainless steel appliances, across the street from golden gate park and public transportation.

Burbed reader Jason alerted me to this fine property in SF. Hey, it’s got the lucky price! Hey it’s got 0 bed rooms! Hey it’s got a deeded backyard for pets!

But what’s this all about?


Does this mean that this was formerly a TIC which has now been broken up into separate units? Or is there really $1.3 million in instant equity to be tapped?

Please chime in, SF experts! Please chime in!

Comments (2) -- Posted by: burbed @ 5:42 am

April 20, 2009

Land at a Millbrae home when landing at SFO

1115 LANDING Ln, Millbrae, CA 94030 | MLS# 80915632
1115 LANDING Ln Millbrae, CA 94030
Price: $550,000

Beds: 3
Baths: 1
Sq. Ft.: 1,020
$/Sq. Ft.: $539
Lot Size: 5,000 Sq. Ft.
Property Type: Detached Single Family
Style: Cottage/Bungalow
Year Built: 1952
Stories: 1
Neighborhood: Airport Park
County: San Mateo
MLS#: 80915632
Source: MLSListings
Status: Active
On Redfin: 10 days
This home features 3 bedrooms and 1 bathroom. Hardwood floors, wood burning fireplace, and a spacious yard with a detached 2 car garage. A separate dining area just off the kitchen. Close proximity to 101, SFO, BART and shopping.

Burbed reader Pete writes:

“Landing Lane” in Millbrae?

Why don’t they just have the address as “Terminal 1, Gate B34”?

You don’t even have to look at it to know this listing isn’t going to end well – cat portrait and all!

Alright, let’s first look at the cat portrait:


Hey that’s not bad. It really adds balance to the wall heater next to it. Actually, this is a clever marketing scheme. It tags onto the rising popularity of Caturdays! “Open house this caturday!” Oooh the ring of that is just amazing!

As for the joke about Terminal 1 Gate B34?


Nice try – but this is actually far closer to the international terminal. Which makes sense since it’s the international people who have the money these days.

I can see it now – one of the many billionaires from Shanghai is flying to SFO to visit. As he passes over Landing Lane he sighs. “I know my investment is safe. I can see it from here.”

That in itself is worth it right there.

Comments (22) -- Posted by: burbed @ 5:35 am

April 19, 2009

Median price of single family home in Mountain View remains at $1 million

Mountain View Voice : Home sales way down, but prices remain high
The median price of a single-family home in Mountain View remained just over $1 million in the first quarter of 2009, despite the fact that half as many were sold compared to the same period last year, according to the local Realtors’ association.

The trend is the reverse of what’s been reported in Santa Clara County overall, where sales have reached new heights in some areas as the county median for previously owned, single-family homes dropped from $716,500 in February 2008 to $421,000 in February 2009.

The Silicon Valley Association of Realtors reports that the median price of a single-family home in Mountain View was at $1,015,037 in the first quarter of 2009, down just slightly from $1,050,000 in the first quarter of 2008 and up from $946,500 in the first quarter of 2007.

Local median condo prices declined much farther, however, going from $645,000 in the first quarter of 2008 to $569,000 in the first quarter of 2009. That number is still higher than the $559,750 median reported in the first quarter of 2007.

Mountain View home sales are down overall: Only 33 condos and 20 single-family homes were sold in 2009’s first quarter, compared to 55 condos and 47 single-family homes in the same period last year.

City officials report that there were 40 foreclosures in Mountain View in 2008.

Blah blah blah. The most important part is to observe that the price of single family homes in Mountain View remains over $1 million.

If that doesn’t say Real Bay Area… I don’t know what does.

Let’s face it, this economic downturn has been painful in other areas, like Sunnyvale – but might I be so bold as to predict that the median will be $1.1 by the end of this year?

Comments (118) -- Posted by: burbed @ 5:59 am

April 18, 2009

Be a Real Estate Millionaire: Secret Strategies To Lifetime Wealth Today

It’s Saturday. That means its another installment of Burbed’s Book Club. Here’s the book you must buy:

Be a Real Estate Millionaire: Secret Strategies To Lifetime Wealth Today

A master money maker tells you how to make your fortune in real estate.

Be a Real Estate Millionaire will teach you Dean Graziosi’s personal strategies for turning real estate “losers” into winners. Discover the seven keys to uncovering “hidden real estate values.” Learn to identify the five types of real estate markets and the right strategy for each. Take Dean’s local market analysis test to determine the exact nature of your local real estate market. Receive Dean’s unique formula for win-win-win real estate transactions and experience how you can make money while helping others make money, too. Let Dean share his strategies and secrets and help you become a real estate millionaire today. Read and act on Dean’s advice and you too will become a real estate millionaire. Discover the Seven Keys to Hidden Real Estate Values Find the Seller’s “Magic Buttons” Learn How to Identify the Five Types of Real Estate Markets Take the Local Market Analysis Test Match the Proper Strategy with Your Local Market

Sure you can click on the link and see some of the reviews for yourself, but what good are they? They’re all from jealous, bitter, renters. For example:

But the book itself doesn’t offer anything specific. What I mean is, this is more of a book on how to have the proper attitude and the proper mindset. It isn’t a step by step manual on how to conduct real estate deals you want in the high end market. If you are looking for a how to book, this is the wrong book for you. If you want to “feel” good and “think” rich, then this would tickle your curiosity.

Uh, hello. Everyone knows that to be rich, you must think rich!

You must aspire to be a millioniare, to become a millionaire!

If a book doesn’t help inspire you to aspire, then really… what good is it? That’s why you should clink the link, and buy the book today!

Thanks to Burbed reader Tony for this find!

Comments (10) -- Posted by: burbed @ 5:24 am

April 17, 2009

American Journeys – Searching for Silicon Valley; a Place and a State of Mind – NYTimes.com

American Journeys – Searching for Silicon Valley; a Place and a State of Mind – NYTimes.com
That diversity is immediately apparent almost anywhere in Silicon Valley. You can see it on Castro Street in Mountain View, dotted with a proliferation of ethnic restaurants. Elsewhere, you can turn down a street seemingly at random and find the shop signs are all in Chinese or Spanish or Vietnamese.

Standout restaurants include La CosteƱa, a hole-in-the-wall grocery in Mountain View that has great burritos (and a Guinness World Record claim for making the largest), and Evvia in Palo Alto, which serves a spectacular version of arnisia paidakia, or lamb chops.

Congratulations to Silicon Valley for being featured in the New York Times travel section today.

In addition to our powerhouse tech/green tech industries, we now have a booming tourism industry.

I hope you’re having a great Friday, because I am! The stars are aligned for a major take off in Real Estate as more foreigners will soon be trying to snatch up vacation homes in Cupertino, Palo Alto, Mountain View, and other Real Bay Area cities. Who needs Cannes when you can have Campbell!

Comments (87) -- Posted by: burbed @ 11:00 am

$585 per square foot SFH in San Francisco – amazing deal

601 Dolores St, San Francisco, CA 94110 | MLS# 352172
601 Dolores St San Francisco, CA 94110
Price: $9,950,000

Beds: 3
Baths: 2.5
Sq. Ft.: 17,000
$/Sq. Ft.: $585
Lot Size: –
Property Type: Single-Family Home
Style: Traditional
Year Built: 1910
View: Panoramic, City Lights, Bay Bridge, Downtown, Garden/Greenbelt
Region: San Francisco District 5 (Central)
Area: Mission Dolores
County: San Francisco
MLS#: 352172
Source: San Francisco MLS
Status: Active
On Redfin: 61 days
This stunning Gothic Former Church is now one of the most extraordinary & largest homes in SF. A one-of-a-kind property featuring an enormous lvng area/sanctuary w/ soaring ceilngs, arched wndws framing The Park, original stned glass wndws, custom mahogany finishes, 2 wdbrng & 2 gas frpls, a new chef’s KIT & a spacious DR. The Master BR w/ marble Roman BA, dressing rm & 360 vws from the tower’s meditation rm & deck. Huge grand floor lvl that could be gallery/gym/offce/rcrdng studio. 4-6 Garage.

Thanks to Burbed reader Paul for this find. And people say San Francisco houses are unaffordable. At $585 per square foot, this is an incredible steal!

Personally, I’m wondering where the 3 bedrooms go. I chose to feature this photo because this is probably where I’d put the master bedroom. Just think of how romantic this would be at night! Every night you could renew your marriage by walking down the aisle, up to the altar.

I know IPOs aren’t doing so hot right now, but I just know that when the next hot startup IPOs, this will be instantly snapped up. Can’t you imagine this property filled with Aeron chairs, bean bags, Razor scooters, and neon beer signs? I can. And I can’t wait!

Come on Silicon Valley – let’s snap this up now!

Comments (17) -- Posted by: burbed @ 5:30 am

April 16, 2009

Can you park a space shuttle, a fire truck, or a blimp in this Fremont house?

35983 CARNATION Way, FREMONT, CA 94536 | MLS# 40379294
Price: $689,950

Beds: 3
Baths: 2.5
Sq. Ft.: 1,353
$/Sq. Ft.: $510
Lot Size: 9,020 Sq. Ft.
Property Type: Single Family Detached
Style: Ranch
Year Built: 1955
Stories: 1
View: Hills
Neighborhood: Not Listed
Area: Fremont
County: Alameda
MLS#: 40379294
Source: EBRD
Status: Active
On Redfin: 153 days
Unsold in 90 days
Niles home w/ 9-car garage! Completely remodeled, granite, hardwood, tile, recessed lighting, french doors, maple cabinets, AC & many more amenities. Garage: Approx 24×60 and 18×12 Roll-up. 14’7″ Ceiling height 16′ side Roll up w/ access to patio. Air compressor with built in air lines

Thanks to Burbed reader CB for this find.

Wow. Check out that garage. CB thought that this would be great if you worked for NASA and occasionally brought the space shuttle home with you. Personally, I think it’s a bit more modest – this is for all you firefighters who bring the crane home with you sometimes.

What I don’t quite get is the 9-car garage aspect. Is this targetted towards Jay Leno and Jerry Seinfeld?

Let’s take a closer look:


Oh, it’s obvious! It’s for those big rig drivers who want to park at home. Right next to their pinball machine, and their antique phone!

They say in marketing that you should always find a niche.

Consider this niche found!

Comments (104) -- Posted by: burbed @ 5:21 am

April 15, 2009

Tech jobs hammered by recession – San Jose Mercury News

Tech jobs hammered by recession – San Jose Mercury News
Tech jobs in the valley “are declining pretty rapidly,” said Jon Haveman, a principal with Beacon Economics, a firm that has done a recent study of Silicon Valley employment trends.

To translate the statistics into human terms, ask Rosemarie Whipple, 48, laid off in September from Hewlett-Packard after “almost 28 years” with the company as a printing systems technical consultant.

“I started with HP when I was 19. A lot of people like me were laid off. Now I’m 48. How am I going to get a job? It sucks.”

Whipple said she is $125,000 underwater on the home she bought in Tracy in 2002. Her loan resets in November, adding principal payments after five years of paying only interest. She can’t even land a job as a bartender and is living on the severance HP gave her.

That sounds bad… until you see this:

Gordon Day, president of the IEEE, said the withering of engineering jobs has yet to approach the peak unemployment reached in 2003 in the aftermath of the dot-com collapse. Then, electrical engineering unemployment reached 6.7 percent. The figure in the first quarter was 4.1 percent.

Remember what else happened in 2003?

That’s right… house prices started to SOAR!

So, you heard it here first… once unemployment of tech jobs goes up further, it’ll trigger another housing boom. What? That doesn’t make sense you say?

This is Silicon Valley. We make the impossible possible.

Comments (50) -- Posted by: burbed @ 5:19 am