October 21, 2009

Beautiful Mediterranean house in Lyon Hoag in Burlingame

209 STANLEY Rd, Burlingame, CA 94010 | MLS# 80927695
209 STANLEY Rd Burlingame, CA 94010
Price: $1,088,000

Beds: 4
Baths: 2
Sq. Ft.: 2,040
$/Sq. Ft.: $533
Lot Size: 5,750 Sq. Ft.
Property Type: Detached Single Family
Style: Mediterranean
Stories: Bi/Split Level
Year Built: 1929
Community: Lyon-Hoag
County: San Mateo
MLS#: 80927695
Source: MLSListings
Status: Active
On Redfin: 125 days
Beautiful Burlingame Mediterranean home in sought after Lyon Hoag neighborhood. This classic home has all the original charcter update for use today. Large formal living room, large formal dining room, separate breakfast nook and three large bedrooms make up the original home. Owners have improved and added the second bath to the fourth bedroom/family room downstairs. Large garage and basement

Alright… I’ve got a confession. I never knew about Lyon-Hoag. Sure it sounds like a Vienna/Vietnam fusion cuisine dish… or a virus… but apparently it’s amazingly sought after. Have you heard of it? Are you seeking it out? Why not?

Aside from that, we should all be impressed by the improvements – more bedrooms and bathrooms, and still a garage! Even a basement! Wow!

I’m not quite so sure what’s going back here:


A well? A spa? An outhouse? A secret passage?

Or is this more of the amazing Lyon-Hoag mystique?

Comments (32) -- Posted by: burbed @ 5:59 am

32 Responses to “Beautiful Mediterranean house in Lyon Hoag in Burlingame”

  1. CB Says:

    It’s a stand-off bunker for when the sheriff comes with foreclosure papers. Or quarters for your midget service staff. So hard to tell.

  2. karen Says:

    Lying Hog Neighborhood?

  3. Hellboy Says:

    Come on guys, this is your own personal mini Buddha temple out back. complete with Buddha effigies and candles inside. If your name is “grasshopper”, this house is for you..

  4. SanMatean Says:

    This comment keeps getting eaten…let’s try again…

    Can’t say I’m too familiar with B-lingame nieghborhoods, but Redfin has a Lyon-Hoag neighborhood that you can target searches on. It’s sandwiched between Caltrain and 101 south of Burlingame Ave.


    The median price per square foot of homes in this area jumped from $165/sqft in 1994 to $675/sqft in 2008. Thats >4x in 14 years. RBA indeed! This year the median has receded to $585/sqft in Lyon-Hoag.

    Here’s a chart of Lyon-Hoag prices with normalized* CS prices for comparison.


    This kind of appreciation is out of alignment with the Case-Shiller top-tier model; CS top-tier property prices rose ~2.8-fold in this period. It’s actually more consistent with the CS bottom-tier, which rose 3.9-fold in this period. Strikingly, the bottom-tier is currently priced at 1.49x 1994 prices (2.9% annualized appreciation), whereas Lyon-Hoag is still at 3.5x 1994 prices (9.4% annual appreciation). CS Top-tier median is at 2.1x 1994.

    This kind of pattern may be indicative of the top-tier within the top-tier (top 10%?). Anecdotally, the Barron Park and Midtown Palo Alto Neighborhoods show similar patterns.

    *to normalize CS prices, I set the 1994 value of each tier to the 1994 value of the Lyon-Hoag reference set. I then appreciated the values by the annual CS-appreciation to model each tier.

  5. anon Says:

    looks like lying hog is specious.

  6. Zak Says:


    Great analysis. Greenspan will be proud of you.

    I still remember the dot-com days. People repeated the phrase: it’s the new economy stupid, profits don’t count. You heard it so many times from so many people, you were inclined to believe that it was true.

    I think it is the same with the real estate in the Bay Area. There are enough people repeating that this is the opportunity to buy or you will be priced out forever. In the face of such a convincing argument who wants to understand the dull mathematical and logical explanation.

  7. BuyersAreIdiots Says:

    Good post SanMatean.

    It’s indicative of the last remnants of bubble mentality that still permeate the ‘Real Bay Area’. I think the final nail in the coffin will arrive once the option ARMs and Alt-As begin exploding starting next year. Once that occurs, the normally safe high end Real Bay Area market will have the rug pulled out from underneath it. All bets are off at that point.

    Incidentally, the following chart somewhat mimics yours from the standpoint of demonstrating that the correction thus far has only been relegated to the lower end property areas:


    As indicated from the graph, we are lagging from a correction standpoint in the upper tier. That will still take sometime to run its course.

  8. UnrealAlex Says:

    Between the train tracks and 101? That’s prime.

    As an originally Southern California product, I hear “Hoag” and think of a hospital. Of course I hear “Burlingame” and think of Burlington, a place that to my mind makes coats out of old carpets, fur collars courtesy of the local SPCA.

  9. SanMatean Says:


    I like the housingbubblebust graphs, but I don’t think that their inflation reference series is relevant. Housing prices are tied to incomes, and indirectly linked to inflation. Importantly, incomes outpaced inflation, especially for high-income earners, over the last 30 years.

    US Census data indicate that annual San Mateo County incomes have risen 354% from a median of $17962 in 1980 to $81573 in 2007. That averages out to ~5.7% per year over this period. In contrast, the CPI (bubblebusts’ measure of inflation) has risen 182% from 100 in 1980 to 282 in 2007, or ~3.9% on average per year over this period. San Mateo incomes outpaced inflation by 1.8% per year! Compounded, that makes a 67% difference over 29 years. Accordingly, the wage-adjusted data series would have a value of ~500 today, somewhat higher than current inflation series value of 300.

    Looking back at housingbubblebust graphs, this might imply that Vallejo, Stockton, Oakland, and Santa Rosa are underpriced. I can’t say this with any confidence, since I don’t know if incomes in these areas rose in proportion to San Mateo county incomes. I doubt that it did. Regardless, it seems fair to say that San Francisco and San Jose (at 620 and 600, respectively) were 10-20% more expensive than the 1980-income adjusted trend in Q1 2009.

    Coming back to my analysis of Lyon-Hoag, median price per square foot in 1988 and 1994 ranged between $134 and $204. For arguments sake, let’s assume a $200 psqft value in 1990. Incomes rose ~4.6% per year in San Mateo County from 1990-2007. Income-adjusted, this should now cost ~510 per square ft. That’s about 20% less than the current median price of $585 per square foot.

  10. SanMatean Says:

    Whoops, math error in my last paragraph, current lyon-hoag prices should be $470 per square foot, not 510. At $585/sqft in Q1 2009 Lyon-hoag prices were (at least) 24% higher than the modeled wage-adjusted 1990 value.

  11. BuyersAreIdiots Says:


    Good points. However, I disagree with this statement:

    “Housing prices are tied to incomes, and indirectly linked to inflation”

    Based on Robert Shiller’s research, that is in actuality not true. Housing prices basically track inflation. Over the time-frames that he research, which spanned nearly 110 years of US home prices, he concluded that they are actually flat when inflation is removed. Hence the famous Shiller graph:


    Also, rental prices do not follow the same trend. If wages were the driving factor, rental prices should have followed suit since they are a direct representation of the supply/demand curve within a given geography. But that didn’t happen. Rental costs, while peaking in 2000, declined steadily until around 2005. They spiked again towards 2007 and have been declining again ever since.

    There is also the big unknown in that we do not not how well future wage growth will occur. With the outsourcing trend and the high employment rate, coupled with the cost of living in the Bay Area, I am expecting a flattening of the wage curve and a decline in wage growth from an aggregate standpoint as more mid level white collar workers leave this area for lower costs regions of the USA. (Or overseas)

  12. BuyersAreIdiots Says:

    Hey burbed,

    What is up with your site lately? I’ve had several posts get eaten in the past few days. Seems like other folks are experiencing this as well.

    What gives?

  13. Pralay Says:

    You guys can do “precision calculations” as much you can, but there are too many people waiting in sidelines with money. In addition, foreigners are coming. There is no way RBA price will go down. You guys will be priced out forever again.

  14. nomadic Says:

    Sure, nationwide you have a reversion to the mean, but that doesn’t mean different markets aren’t going to show different curves. I don’t remember what the C-S graph looks like over that time span for the SF MSA.

    Say it with me everyone: useless aggregate data. :-)

  15. nomadic Says:

    Here it is:


    And one bloggers rant about it:
    Case-Schiller, oft touted as being the most unbiased, thereby accurate measurement of home prices is an index that started 21 years ago. There are no data points prior to 1988. It uses the year 2000 as it’s base-line and tracks the same single family homes that have re-sold. According to the Case-Shiller index for March 2009 home prices in San Francisco are down 46.1% from their peak in 2006.

    Which means, if you are going to rely on those numbers literally, according to the Case-Schiller index, a Single Family Home that sold for $1,000,000 in San Francisco in 2006, was as of March 2009 selling for $539,000.


  16. SanMatean Says:


    Thanks for the CS link! That throws a bit of a wrinkle in my prior thesis!

    As nomadic points out (perhaps tongue-in-cheek) inflation models the national trend well. I’d be interested to see Shiller’s comments on localized markets. I can’t escape the conviction that geographically-limited increases in income will drive geographically-limited increases in asset values. Does anyone know how Shiller defines inflation? If he makes housing prices a part of his inflation model, then his data are a self-fulfilling prophecy.

    With respect to rents, I think its difficult to interpret much from rent data over the last 7-10 years since huge home-price distortions disfavored renting. Perhaps comparisons over longer periods would be revealing. I’ll see what I can find later…

  17. Gavin Says:

    SanMatean: I think you are on the right track comparing the increase in income with house prices but your starting point is faulty.

    When you compare data that has boom and bust cycles, you should use the same point in the cycle. You should compare either the peak in the previous cycle to the peak in this cycle.

    Since 1990 was the peak in the last housing cycle it should be compared to 2006/2007 (the peak in this cycle).

    Similarly if you start comparing house prices in 1995 (the bottom of the last cycle), it should be compared to 2010, 2011 or whenever the bottom of this cycle happens.

  18. BuyersAreIdiots Says:


    Your analysis was still good though. And it does produce a different view which is always valuable.

    As you said, the rental market is going to be a tad weird. Especially if the excrement hits the rotating cooling device when it comes to housing. There could be a situational turnaround where foreclosures and continued housing asset deflation cause a subsequent spike in rental costs as demand increases. Should be interesting. Which is also why I rent in a rent controlled area. :-)

  19. nomadic Says:

    LG has rent control? Or is my memory on the fritz?

  20. sonarrat Says:

    LG does not have rent control.. East Palo Alto has a strict rent control, San Jose has a very lenient rent control, San Francisco has a bizarre and complicated rent control.

  21. nomadic Says:

    I guess I forgot where BAI lives then.

  22. burbed Says:

    Part of the challenge of analyzing income is how to account for capital gains from IPOs, GOOG, and AAPL?

  23. Herve Estater Says:

    > Part of the challenge of analyzing income is how to account for capital gains from IPOs, GOOG, and AAPL?

    I think you’re quite right?

  24. DreamT Says:

    Most of all the income of the local prop 13 residents who’ve lived here for 10 to 30 years and won’t ever (for the large majority) buy another house in the same zip is completely irrelevant to track expected house price, as opposed to the (combined) income of the wannabe buyers who usually don’t live in the same zip yet.
    Yet these people make the bulk of the calculation for the “local income”.
    As for housing tracking inflation, quoting stats that go back beyond 30 years ago, let alone 100 years ago, and expecting the future to adhere to the same model is wishful thinking. So many variables changed including immigration flow, credit and savings habits, access to information, worker mobility, international competition, the handling of the dollar, the relative strength of international currencies, etc. Exceedingly simple prediction models are usually wrong.

  25. karen Says:

    #8 Of course I hear “Burlingame” and think of Burlington, a place that to my mind makes coats out of old carpets, fur collars courtesy of the local SPCA

    wow, that is so true – that *is* how those coats looked. but the pathetic thing is that they were some of the last made-in-the-U.S. clothing; out of the old mills of the northeast. I used to wander through their outlets in new england, and wonder why clothing was so horrible. then (this was a *long* time ago; early 80s) some brand named Esprit was invented, and although I couldn’t afford it, at least I knew that there was something else. the U.S. manufactured a lot of horrible crud in the 70s and early 80s.

    why would they be trying to sell Burlington coats in S. CA, even decades ago???? so that people could turn them back into carpets???

    article just up on calculated risk re “plunge” in west coast rental prices; santa clara down 10 percent

  26. SiO2 Says:

    DreamT says
    “So many variables changed including immigration flow, ”

    This is a big factor particularly in places like Cupertino. There’s a very strong cultural preference to own among certain immigrant groups. So it may be true that it’s cheaper month-to-month to rent than to own, but the overall preference to own (and therefore pay more to own) has changed with greater immigration since the early 90s. Pralay mocked the idea of not doing “precision calculation” to compare rent vs own and yet this is what happens in many cases.

    The flip side is, for those who prefer to rent, then renting is relatively cheap.

    And the other flip side :) is that this factor drove an increase in price, but that may not be a continuing increase if immigration doesn’t continue to increase. It reduced this year due to the economy. May reduce in future years due to better opportunities in home countries. Which doesn’t mean a collapse in RBA prices, but doesn’t mean that the trend since 1985 would repeat either.

  27. BuyersAreIdiots Says:

    “LG does not have rent control”

    I do live in Los Gatos and yes, they do have rent control. Maximum 5% per year increase. I actually had to contact Project Sentinel once when a landlord raised my rent past the aforementioned limit and he was informed that he was in violation.

    Note that the rental rules only apply to rental properties with 3 or more units. That may be why some are able to circumvent the policy.

    You can read the rules in the FAQ of the town website:


    Note that there are some ways to navigate around this using ‘pass through’ formulas. But the landlord would have to demonstrate inflationary costs that exceed the current rental increase limit. Also, if improvements are made to the property or new features added, that can also allow for an increase beyond the 5% maximum.

    So yes, I did my homework. :-)

  28. SanMatean Says:


    Regarding AAPL and GOOG, the census income data includes all income, including capital gains, etc. One unfortunate thing is that the median numbers don’t capture events that occur at the extremes- like say a 250K GOOG option cash-out. This could have a significant effect if, say, 1% of households realized this kind of windfall each year and applied it towards a down-payment. These kinds of payouts will undoubtedly skew prices higher than predicted by median alone, especially in years when stock prices have doubled or tripled.

    Upon reflection, it occurs to me that median income really better describes the ability to make monthly payments than anything else. If people have large amounts of cash from overseas, parents, or stock-option payouts this will radically change the complexion of pricing. So, the question then becomes are there more people in the Bay Area with large lump sums today than there were 10-20 years ago? I don’t know of a way to get any data on this one. The next question is: is the source of extra lump-sums for down payments sustainable? If not, then one would expect the trend to revert to what is sustainable by a function of the median income.


    I agree that peak-to-peak and trough-to tough comparisons are ideal. The problem is that good income stats aren’t available on an annual basis until 2002. Prior to this, there are the decennial censuses, and a hodge-podge of state and local estimates that are hard to compare due to differences in measurement. I used the 1990 point in my prior analysis to project a wage-adjusted value of $470 p sq ft today. In fairness, 1990 was the peak of the last cycle, so we should compare it to 2007, the peak of this cycle. In 2007 the 1990 wage-adjusted Lyon-Hoag median was $430/ sq ft. The observed median was $625/sq ft! The current cycle peak was 45% higher than the prior cycle, after accounting for wage growth!

    (and now a speculative departure) It is interesting to note that median prices dropped 10-20% over 6 years in the last cycle. If this cycle were to mimic the last one, we might anticipate that prices would drop to the prior wage-adjusted peak, and then further retrace by 10-20%. That would suggest a trough target of $344/sq ft, or an additional 42% drop from today’s prices. Ouch.

    Of course, one thing this discussion ignores entirely is the impact of financing terms. In 1990, the average fixed-rate 30-year loan funded at a 10+% interest rate. In 2007 that same loan went for 6.5%. If you run the numbers, this results in a ~17% reduction in monthly ownership costs. Currently average rates are round 5.5%, reducing costs by ~21% relative to 1990. This mitigates the aforementioned 42% drop, reducing it to a more gentlemanly ~20% drop from current prices.

    Now, when interest rates go up, the whole ball-game changes…

    And finally BAI,

    Your question about rents and income really piqued my curiosity, so I dug up median rents in San Mateo County back to 1980. In 1980 median rent was $336/mo, or approximately 22% of the median income of $18K per year. In 1990 rents were $769/mo, ~20% of the median income of $46K per year. In 2000 rents were $1144/mo, ~19% of median income of $71K per year. In 2008 median rent was $1437/mo, ~20% of median income of $85K per year.

    These data suggest that median rents track median incomes quite closely (at least in San Mateo county). Consider that in the period 1980-present rents have risen at an annual rate of 5.33%, and that incomes have risen by 5.77%. In contrast, inflation averaged 3.54% over this period. These data do not support the concept that rents track inflation. Rather, they support the conclusion that over the long-term rents follow a trend predicted by median wage.

    I think it’s important to keep an eye on incomes rather than inflation, especially as incomes can decline more rapidly than inflation (think about what 12% unemployment can do to a median!). When median incomes drop, I’d expect a further decline in housing prices.

  29. BuyersAreIdiots Says:


    Great post. And yes, I agree. All data sets need to be taken into account. I am actually curious how things will play out pertaining to wages and how that will correlate with rental and/or housing costs.

    Speaking of rents, we had a pretty substantial drop in rents this year as per this article:


    CPI & PPI numbers are also flat or declining. Conventional wisdom dictates that with the Fed inflating as much as they are, we should be having price inflation. Yet that is not occur. It is scary since the only time something similar occurred was the Japanese asset bubble crash where even with low interest rates and liquidity injections, the rate of wealth destruction was so great that deflation actually took hold. Bill Gross from Pimco recently moved from the inflation to deflation camp. So, needless to say, this will be an interesting ride. :-)

  30. burbed Says:

    Hey burbed,

    What is up with your site lately? I’ve had several posts get eaten in the past few days. Seems like other folks are experiencing this as well.

    What gives?

    I wish I knew. I just checked and a bunch of your comments (and others) were snagged in the spam review filter. But wordpress didn’t notify me. And I don’t see any spammy-signals. Argh.

  31. SanMatean Says:

    Thanks BAI!

    Bill Gross is the master of double speak- I always take his pronouncements with a grain of salt!

    The declining rents are a harbinger of the income losses that have yet to be reported. The lag in reporting these stats kills me- it took until October of this year to let us know what happened in 2008. You’d think they would have a solid handle on things shortly after Apr 15th, but perhaps there are too many people filing at the Oct 15 extended deadline…

    I anticipate price inflation in commodities, especially in light of the declining dollar. I don’t know whether this will translate into wage inflation. I can’t see how wages will climb without an improvement in the employment situation. At least the Army is filling its recruiting goals these days…

  32. BuyersAreIdiots Says:


    You got me thinking about something else that I was pondering. I am wondering how well the long term inflation numbers actually relate to overall economic data.

    The reason I say that is because in 1995, the government changed the way CPI & PPI were reported. So if you are trying to get long term trends, they may not fit well once you pass that demarcation point. So that makes things a tad askew in that fashion.

    From my understanding, the previous CPI method supposedly overstated inflation while the new method allegedly understates it. So that makes long term calculations more difficult to manage.

    And you are right about Bill Gross. He does have a tendency to flip flop. I actually prefer listening to Nouriel Roubini’s assessment of things. He seems to be pretty methodical about his calculations.

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