July 22, 2010

Location, Location, Location

Ask a professional real estate agent why one house costs more than another, and she’ll say “location, location, location.”  Ask why one house cost more than another despite being smaller and having fewer amenities, and she’ll say, “location, location, location.”

Then again, ask her what she had for dinner last night, and she’ll say, “location, location, location.”

Is location really all there is to pricing Real Estate?  Is it the perceived market pulse, or expectations, or whether a neighbor down the street has an RV in the front yard?  Does the condition of the house matter?  Or is it just what the realtard had for dinner last night?

Several homes for sale on the same street is one way to stress test this real estate cliché.  So let’s begin with this “cozy charmer,” as a professional might call it.  The rest of us would call it a charming ninety year old garden shed.  But when the shed is in a prime zip code, it’s priced right under a million.

725 LINCOLN Ave Palo Alto, CA 94301
$999,000

image

 

Beds: 2
Baths: 1
Sq. Ft.: 1,032
$/Sq. Ft.: $968
Lot Size: 4,250 Sq. Ft.
Property Type: Detached Single Family
Stories: 1
Year Built: 1920
Community: Community Center
County: Santa Clara
MLS#: 81035012
Source: MLSListings
Status: Active This listing is for sale and the sellers are accepting offers.
On Redfin: 5 days

English cottage style with wonderful decor and charm. Two bedrooms with walk-in closets; large kitchen, separate dining room, inside laundry. Lovely patios under new trellis. Separate out building attractive exterior could become darling room of some practical or fun purpose. Fantastic location!

See!  She said location!  I guess we should be grateful she only said it once.  She also said “charm,” “lovely,” and “darling.”  And the “separate out building attractive exterior” isn’t shown in the photos, even though it “could become darling room of some practical or fun purpose.”  Practical or fun?  Why not both?  Then the on-site meth lab/hookah bar is a go!

Now, speaking of the “fantastic location,” notice anything about the map?

image .

Well yes, it appears the property has been subdivided into The House and The Street Access.  That’s curious, but remember today’s title?  Hint: The yellow “do not cross – crime scene” tape runs across Middlefield Road.  So, is this house on the “right” or the “wrong” side of the boundary?  And would the price be higher or lower if the chicken crossed the Road? 

By the way, the neighbor really does have an RV parked on the lawn.

image

Now that is one classy neighborhood.  Can’t wait to see how prices (as well as neighbors’ vehicles) fare on The Other Side.  Stay tuned!

Comments (26) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 5:02 am

26 Responses to “Location, Location, Location”

  1. SEA Says:

    madhaus- Thanks for this fine writeup. I knew this was your writing as soon as I read, “So let’s begin with this “cozy charmer,” as a professional might call it. The rest of us would call it a charming ninety year old garden shed.”

    Did they put that crime scene tape on the right side of the road?

    In the end, what should one expect for $1M?

  2. Real Estater Says:

    madhaus says,
    >>So, is this house on the “right” or the “wrong” side of the boundary? And would the price be higher or lower if the chicken crossed the Road?

    Well, let’s follow the chicken to this house. Oh, the chicken says it’s already pending.

  3. SEA Says:

    659 Kingsley Ave–is that in the RBA?

    Better hope some over-bidding brings the selling price up to where it needs to be.

  4. Petsmart groomer Says:

    Small house on a small lot. It will sell though, to someone who cares more about prestige than anything else.

    That’s my favorite part: Two bedrooms with walk-in closets; large kitchen. You’d think she’s talking about a mansion, not a 1,032 sq ft house…

  5. nomadic Says:

    #2, nice of you to point out that when you move to the “right” side of Middlefield, the price is higher.

  6. nomadic Says:

    BTW, this house cannot be in the RBA. It last sold 20 years ago for $365k. I’m aghast; it has not doubled in price twice.

  7. nomadic Says:

    Disregard my dyslexia in #6 this morning… I was seeing 1989. Argh.

  8. Pralay Says:

    Well, let’s follow the chicken to this house. Oh, the chicken says it’s already pending.
    —–

    That’s because the buyer was walking north.

    This could have been Fake Estater’s one of “2 investment homes”.

  9. SEA Says:

    nomadic- I know it’s not sold yet, and unlike Owner, I’m not going to make claims about the sale price before it’s sold, but $365k to $1M in 12 years? If this is realized, I’d say it was a great investment. Today, by the way, is the 90th day that Owner’s fine property has been on Redfin, and still no price reduction, for Pete’s sake. That’s $2,700 in space rent, at $30 a day, and while I know that’s not a lot of money, that $8,000 income tax credit is gone, so we’re talking about $10k evaporation on a less than $100k sale. Before you get too testy on me about the $2,700 in added expense, remember that sellers seek to sell sooner rather than later, given equal selling prices.

  10. Pralay Says:

    By the way, the neighbor really does have an RV parked on the lawn.
    Now that is one classy neighborhood.

    —–

    You missed to look at the other side (or “wrong side”) of Lincoln. A pickup truck? Who lives there? The guy in the mail room?

  11. nomadic Says:

    Maybe it’s an employee of ABC Elevator Maintenance.

  12. Real Estater Says:

    It’s a great day, guys! Dow soars, and mortgage rate hit bottom low. I’m refinancing again. Housing expenses just keep getting cheaper.

  13. Pralay Says:

    Maybe it’s an employee of ABC Elevator Maintenance.
    —–

    LOL! You know why he parks that two-wheel trailer on street. Read what his naighbor has to say.

    besides blocking drives ways so people cant park the owner of this company is a complete jerk that has no respect for woman.

  14. nomadic Says:

    Leave it to Pralay to take it to the next level. :-)

    I just realized that ABC Elevator is the guy with the RV on his lawn in madhaus’ post (assuming Google has the address pegged properly).

  15. Pralay Says:

    Housing expenses just keep getting cheaper.
    —–

    It is the right time to buy 2 investment properties. Or may be 10 investment properties.

  16. bob Says:

    It’s a great day, guys! Dow soars, and mortgage rate hit bottom low. I’m refinancing again. Housing expenses just keep getting cheaper.

    http://www.zacks.com/stock/news/37363/Existing+Home+Sales+Fall+5.1%25

  17. SEA Says:

    Real Estater- “Housing expenses just keep getting cheaper.”

    Yes, as the competition heats up, rents keep going down.

  18. nomadic Says:

    #16 – did you see that even ol’ Larry Yun (NAR mouthpiece) said that the increase in inventory was troubling? The quote seems to vary depending the news outlet and I can’t find it now.

    Even so, the stats for California are better than national sales:
    http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2010/07/22/BU7T1EIDPN.DTL

  19. SEA Says:

    It’s too bad Yun is not paid what he’s worth.

  20. Location, Loocation, Looocation – Part II | Burbed.com Says:

    […] a previous post, I asked whether location was all there was to pricing real estate.  Looking at several homes […]

  21. Location*3, Part III | Burbed.com Says:

    […] our previous installments, we saw a very small house priced under a million, and a very large house priced (and in contract within a month) under eight […]

  22. RBAWannaBe Says:

    Wondering what’s going on with Lincoln’s Pending, then Active, then Pending again, no…wait…Active status? According to a realtor friend apparently the house is literally falling into the earth. It’s still standing on it’s original (mostly disintegrated) foundation. The best part is that the seller didn’t disclose that potential buyers. Let’s hope they have learned their lesson by now. Only an idiot or developer would buy that dump. BTW – that’s what happened with the “mailman’s” house on the wrong side of Lincoln. It’s gone (along with the truck) and a new build is in process.

  23. Al Says:

    Just to clarify a few mistatements in the comments. ABC Elevator is not located here. Does not own nor use a trailer. Does not own nor use an RV. Neither do its owners.We have not been informed of any of our vehicles blocking anyones driveways. If I have missed anything that you wish to bring up please send a note to our PO Box 1530, Palo Alto, CA 94302 adrress. Thanks
    Al

  24. Pralay Says:

    We were discussing about your “jerk” neighbor, Al.

  25. SEA Says:

    Al, what’s up with the home going on and off the market like some child discovering a light switch for the first time?

  26. AlexGroomer Says:

    Sold for $985K.


Leave a Reply

Please be nice. No name calling, no personal attacks, no racist stuff, no baiting, etc. Let's be nice to each other in the true Bay Area spirit! (Comments may be edited/removed without notice.)