July 2, 2011

WSJ: There is Too a “Facebook Bubble”

BAYHOUSE1

 

Tech Rebound Gives Housing a Lift

By YUKARI IWATANI KANE, The Wall Street Journal, June 30th, 2011

The resurgence in the Silicon Valley tech industry is leading to a new boom in the area’s real estate market, with rising rents and a scarce supply of homes to buy.

When Ann Schneider (photo, right) advertised her 1,782-square-foot, three-bedroom town home in Mountain View for rent on online classifieds site Craigslist earlier this month, she was surprised to get nearly a dozen responses right away.

The modest house has a two-car garage and a backyard, and she had redone the master bath and repainted the walls so it looks in better shape than comparable units in the complex. But she also raised the rent 60% to $4,000 a month.

Caption from another picture:  Rents in Palo Alto are up 11% as landlords, sellers and buyers ride the “Facebook bubble.” Yukari Kane talks to Stacey Delo about the beginnings of another housing bubble in Silicon Valley.

The Wall Street Journal says Facebook Effect, must be true!

This is an Open Thread, and it may have to last the entire holiday weekend.  Renting out your townhouse for $4,000 a month ought to start some fireworks.

 

Comments (213) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 5:14 am

213 Responses to “WSJ: There is Too a “Facebook Bubble””

  1. waiting_for_the_fall Says:

    Some people have money to burn.

  2. CB Says:

    I think this is another one of Google’s intelligence vetting devices when interviewing.

    “Would you rent a Mountain View townhouse for $4000?”

  3. madhaus Says:

    Toward the end of the article, there’s an engineer who bought a house in Mountain View for $700K. It wasn’t until long after I finished the article that I realized the author expected the reader to be shocked at this high price. And of course I wasn’t, because we’re all used to hearing about houses in Mountain View for much more than that. If anything, I had wondered why they led with the overpriced townhouse rental but finished with a typical home transaction.

  4. Jus7tme Says:

    Bullshit story. I saw a SFH home for rent in Mountain View which was just sitting there for weeks on end in April and May.

    Of course the agents are as usual planting lots of incendiary stories, hoping that the market will eventually catch on fire.

    Speak up and prove them wrong.

  5. Real Estater Says:

    There’s plenty of optimism in the air, particularly around here. Property tax assessments are up, Dow finished up 168 after days of up-trend, and auto sales are up.

    It’s a great time to be a landlord. There’s very limited inventory of houses for rent. Multiple offers are common. Rents in my area starts at around $3K for a 2 bedroom to $5K for a 3 bedroom on the “right side” of the Oregon Expressway.

  6. Real Estater Says:

    >>Toward the end of the article, there’s an engineer who bought a house in Mountain View for $700K. It wasn’t until long after I finished the article that I realized the author expected the reader to be shocked at this high price. And of course I wasn’t,

    $700K is not a lot of money for Mountain View. It must be some kind of townhouse. There is no way he can find a SFH for that cheap.

  7. SEA Says:

    “$700K is not a lot of money…”

    I knew the $500k needed to be updated!

  8. Real Estater Says:

    of course, none of the locals believe the housing scene, right?

  9. madhaus Says:

    The article says it was a SFH, but the accompanying photo looks like one of those newer near-zero lot line infill developments. Does anyone recognize the homes in the picture?

    So, not a townhouse, but not much removed from one.

  10. Real Estater Says:

    Current inventory in Palo Alto: 51

    Current buyable inventory*: 11

    * Buyable inventory as defined by: Under $1.5M, At least 1000 SF home, at least 5000 SF lot, not right next to train, fwy, or on busy street

  11. nomadic Says:

    He also said he “got a good deal” at a price lower than normal for the area:

    “I felt like it was a good deal,” he said, adding that he lucked out because the owners wanted to sell quickly. “It was on the higher side of my budget, but it was a single-family unit and nothing of that similar type of house has sold for less than $769,000 in the last year,” he said.

  12. Real Estater Says:

    Out of those 11, if you raise the bar just a bit, such as saying you want at least 6000 SF lot, not an Eichler, not a duplex, not Barron Park school, you’re left with just about nothing.

  13. Real Estater Says:

    Nomadic,

    Read the small print. He said single-family unit; he did not say single-family house.

  14. SEA Says:

    Oh Fk–What’s the difference between SFU and SFH?

  15. SEA Says:

    “It’s not a group home.” lol

  16. Real Estater Says:

    Check out some of the overbids in Palo Alto last month:

    840 Melville Ave: Listed at$1.829M. Sold for $2.45M.
    832 Warren Way: Listed at $1.25M. Sold for $1.625M.
    646 Georgia Ave: Listed at $1.295M. Sold for $1.555M.
    87 Walter Hays Dr: Listed at $1.398M. Sold for $1.605M.
    490 Santa Rita Ave: Listed at $4.698M. Sold for $5.053M.
    259 Coleridge Ave: Listed at $5.295M. Sold for $5.428M.

  17. Petsmart groomer Says:

    > There is no way he can find a SFH for that cheap.

    To you Real Estater, master of the impossible: 1875 San Luis Ave (sold for $572k).

  18. Real Estater Says:

    >>What’s the difference between SFU and SFH?

    SFU is a much broader definition. Basically, he’s saying that he doesn’t live in a duplex, triplex, or quad. Looking at the picture, he lives in a glorified townhouse.

  19. nomadic Says:

    Here’s the dude’s house. Not hard to find:
    http://www.redfin.com/CA/Mountain-View/445-Farrel-Ct-94043/home/1115100

    Single family. $116 HOA fees.

  20. SEA Says:

    “Single family. $116 HOA fees. ”

    Let me fix this:

    Glorified Single Family UNIT, not a duplex, triplex, quad, or group home.

  21. madhaus Says:

    #19, great find! I was wondering why it has triple-pane windows… take a look at the map. Backs up to Central Expressway, with nearby train tracks!

    Not so sure he got a good deal either. Place sold for $645K in 2004 and $397K just five years earlier.

    But not a townhouse. Definition of a townhouse is at least one common wall, with some units having two common walls.

    Wonder what the HOA fees cover? The private street?

  22. nomadic Says:

    Redfin calls it a house. It fits the definition of a SFH, even though it has a postage stamp-sized lot.

    That location is priceless – easy freeway access! Bonus: 237 is right there too.

    He might have gotten a reasonable deal, but his neighbor is f*cked:
    http://www.redfin.com/CA/Mountain-View/467-Whisman-Park-Dr-94043/home/672916

  23. madhaus Says:

    Property type: Detached single family

    Do you live in a townhouse, #6/18? Your house is the same type as his.

  24. Real Estater Says:

    >>He might have gotten a reasonable deal, but his neighbor is f*cked

    His neighbor does not back up to Central Expressway, and the lot size is bigger by 25%.

  25. madhaus Says:

    Lol. His neighbor faces 237. That’s much better!

  26. Real Estater Says:

    >>Do you live in a townhouse, #6/18? Your house is the same type as his.

    Removed, personal attack on third party

  27. Real Estater Says:

    Removed for personal attack of third party

  28. Real Estater Says:

    >>Lol. His neighbor faces 237. That’s much better!

    Look again. He’s got a protective barrier.

  29. madhaus Says:

    Two comments by #28 removed for personal attack of third party. And you were doing such a nice job sticking to real estate. What a shame.

  30. Petsmart groomer Says:

    > his neighbor is f*cked

    > Look again. He’s got a protective barrier.

    A protective barrier can indeed help in such situation.

  31. steve Says:

    overbids don’t really interest me, other than noting that RE’s top example at $2.45M is an eichler. ’08 to ’11 and ’09 to ’11 resales on the other hand…

    http://www.redfin.com/CA/Menlo-Park/800-Magnolia-St-94025/home/1552782
    May 11, 2011 Sold (Public Records) $4,150,000
    Jun 03, 2009 Sold (Public Records) $3,800,000

  32. Sunny(vale) Kim Says:

    Do you live in a townhouse, #6/18? Your house is the same type as his.

    Not really. His house is 1 car garage. This one is 2 car garage. Otherwise, sqft looks similar.

    You see 237. I see highway to opportunity. I am Sunny(vale) Kim, the real estate investor.

  33. Real Estater Says:

    I almost fell out of my seat when I saw this:

    $1.5M house with “Titanic” staircase in Pralay’s school district.

  34. Real Estater Says:

    Pralay,

    Does the street view look familiar?

  35. Arnold Says:

    I had no idea cars belong in the backyard?

    http://www.redfin.com/CA/Sunnyvale/943-Marion-Way-94087/home/761137

    Why does Real Estater always use Motovo.com instead of Redfin.com???

  36. nomadic Says:

    Less lawn to water, Arnold. Do you suppose that diminishes the pride of ownership?

  37. Alex Says:

    Look again. He’s got a protective barrier.

    #28, That’s what I use when I give it to your wife.

  38. Arnold Says:

    Alex that’s funny

  39. Real Estater Says:

    #37 is a personal attack. Madhaus, are you going to take it?

  40. madhaus Says:

    #39, stop whining. It just makes the others laugh at you more.

  41. SV Shopper Says:

    There is totally no inventory right now. All that’s available are junks, and even those are receiving multiple offers. Looks like buyers have to either settle for second choice city or wait in line until all the IPO folks are done.

  42. Petsmart groomer Says:

    > There is totally no inventory right now.

    To you SV Shopper, master of the impossible: http://www.redfin.com.

  43. SV Shopper Says:

    Pet, can you be just a little more helpful?

  44. nomadic Says:

    I think this is what our “helper,” RE would tell you:

    Are you going to sit on the sidelines forever, losing out on the great opportunities to own in the RBA? Even a tiny house in a less desirable part of Palo Alto is better than nothing. Buy now, get on the ladder, and move up later! Now is the time to buy!

  45. bmwman91 Says:

    I stumbled into this blog from a search for “silicon valley housing crash.” Good blog.

    The prices in MV are laughable. There’s a correction coming. Once jumbo limits drop & tech bubble 2.0 funny-money is blown, the gig is up. Worst case, it is price stagnation for a decade. Best case, prices tank rapidly as reality sets in.

    As an employee of a large high tech company in MV, it’s easy to see that current pricing requires high-tech folks to sell their soul & make a huge financial gamble to own here; the majority of us aren’t paid THAT well. Lots of folks want it that badly still. The pain is coming for them, though.

    Then again, history has shown that most people have zero financial sense & tend to make big decisions based on emotions. Maybe MV will always be absurd & loanership will require common sense to take a back seat. Either way, IF I buy, it won’t be for a while, and most likely not in MV. Renting here is a far better deal, and seems like it will be into the foreseeable future (despite rising rents due to lack of affordability for buyers).

  46. Sunny(vale) Kim Says:

    There is totally no inventory right now. All that’s available are junks, and even those are receiving multiple offers.
    —-

    2009:

    Totally no inventory right now, except for San Jose and Santa Clara. Wife doesn’t want to settle for these places due to schools.

    RBA never had any inventory anyway. Why stating the obvious!

    BTW, how many bids did you lose so far, SV Shopper? Has your “big-on-education” wife gone crazy?

  47. Real Estater Says:

    >#28, That’s what I use when I give it to your wife.

    >>#39, stop whining. It just makes the others laugh at you more.

    Just demonstrating your laughable enforcement of the Bay Area spirit. Thanks for playing.

  48. Real Estater Says:

    >>The prices in MV are laughable. There’s a correction coming. Once jumbo limits drop & tech bubble 2.0 funny-money is blown, the gig is up.

    Thanks for the laugh. This is what they said last year. Supposedly interest rate was going to rise too, and foreclosures were going to inundate the market.

  49. bmwman91 Says:

    Time will tell. When (if) it happens, it’s probably well past the time I will have bought elsewhere. I have zero intention of waiting things out up here. I don’t expect substantial drops any time soon. Also, as I mentioned, “Worst case [for buyers], it is price stagnation for a decade.”

    Lots of people are still making rash purchasing decisions based on everything BUT facts. While most high-tech folks can make the monthly payments on a purchase at today’s prices, I think that many will strategically default in the coming years. It isn’t hard to owe more than a house is worth around here. “3.5% down FHA something…how can I lose?”

    And of course, it is all speculation. Who the hell knows. I don’t, nor does anyone else. Buyers will buy what they can “afford,” however it is defined at the time.

  50. Real Estater Says:

    bmwman91,

    If you can come up with the down payment, now is a good time to buy a house. Interest rate is low, and prices are lower than it will be next year, when Facebook money hits the streets. The worst case is that you’ll have a place to live in without having to worry about rent increases.

    By the way, why mod an old BMW? You can’t make an old lady young by adding accessories. Get a newer Porsche 911 and you’re all set.

  51. Sunny(vale) Kim Says:

    If you can come up with the down payment, now is a good time to buy a house. Interest rate is low, and prices are lower than it will be next year, when Facebook money hits the streets.
    —-

    Let’s revisit Real Estater’s 2008 comment:

    Any comment about the 553 jump in the stock market? The same thing will happen to the housing market when the rebound occurs — it’ll be very sudden and furious as buyers cave in after a period of low inventory, slow sales and flat prices.

    We all know how that “sudden and furious” market was since 2008.
    When someone tries to sell something by portraying this kind of sense of urgency, you know what kind of guy he is.

  52. Real Estater Says:

    Pralay,

    Why kind of Indian guy would change his name to Korean?

    2008 was the bottom of the dip. If you bought then as I recommended, you’d be rich now.

  53. Sunny(vale) Kim Says:

    And this is 2009 installment for “right time to buy”, with similar tone:

    If you’re hoping to buy a house or invest in the market, the time to act is not when there is strong consesus that the economy has turned the page. It would be too late by then, because those elements would be priced in. Certainly you assume some risk by acting ahead of the curve, but by this time you should know there’s no “falling knife”, and the general direction of the market is toward recovery.

    So you are price out for “sudden and furious” buyers in 2008. Economy turned around in 2009, and that made you priced out.
    So essentially you are getting priced out EVERY YEAR. Why bother?

  54. Sunny(vale) Kim Says:

    Why kind of Indian guy would change his name to Korean?
    —-

    Summy Kim is my inspiration, just like you. :)
    You want to me take YOUR name instead? Like “Fake Estater”?

  55. Sunny(vale) Kim Says:

    2008 was the bottom of the dip. If you bought then as I recommended, you’d be rich now.
    —-

    :) Thanks for proving that post #50 is nothing but a sales pitch.

  56. Real Estater Says:

    >>Thanks for proving that post #50 is nothing but a sales pitch.

    That’s pretty much your standard response, ignoring the fact that I was indeed ahead of the game each time, and that you could have made money if you followed my advice. If you believe you are priced out forever, then you’re correct. Don’t bother spending anytime on a real estate forum trying to convince others who are not in that predicament.

  57. Real Estater Says:

    >>You want to me take YOUR name instead? Like “Fake Estater”?

    So far, name calling hasn’t made you rich nor made you right.

  58. Real Estater Says:

    >>But she also raised the rent 60% to $4,000 a month.

    Definitely not sudden or furious.

  59. Sunny(vale) Kim Says:

    I am Sunny(vale) Kim, the real estate investor. See my video on my link.

    I introduce Real Estater, my inspiration in Real Bay Area. He knows all the mantras of real estate investment and how to be rich. He already mentioned in #52 that if you listened to him in 2008 and bought your home, you would be rich already. Let’s verify it. Here he showed two Palo Alto properties in 2009.

    A fixer upper in 94301 near Parkinson’s:
    [Ceder St property link]
    Well worth buying at $1606/sq. ft. due to the precious lot size. Gone pending already.
    This one will be next. No downturn here.

    And that “this one” happened to be 1227 Fulton St. It is also pretty close to Real Estater’s own home (we understand the emotional aspect behind this property). Now let’s look at the property history.

    2007: Sold for $1.7M. Wow!!!! Someone is poised to be rich.
    2008: Market bottom, according to Real Estater. You would be rich if you bought in 2008 or before.
    June, 2010: REO (first sign of being rich – what a terrific news)
    Sep, 2010: Sold for $1.33M.

    So, $1.7M – $1.33M = $wealth (being rich).

  60. Sunny(vale) Kim Says:

    Don’t bother spending anytime on a real estate forum trying to convince others who are not in that predicament.
    —-

    :) Real Estater is here to “help”.

    Help means getting rich.

  61. Real Estater Says:

    That’s right. Don’t believe the Wall Street Journal, Business Week, or Bloomberg. Sellers in Palo Alto are foreclosing left and right and losing tons of money.

  62. Real Estater Says:

    Pralay,

    You might have missed this one. Previous sale:

    Mar 18, 2009 Sold (Public Records) $1,895,000

  63. Sunny(vale) Kim Says:

    You might have missed this one. Previous sale:

    Mar 18, 2009 Sold (Public Records) $1,895,000
    —-

    Did that house exist in 2009? The record shows 2011 construction.

  64. Petsmart groomer Says:

    bmwman91, bob and you should hang out.

  65. nomadic Says:

    Everyone ignore the fact that the house in #62 was torn down and replaced with a brand new, much larger house. The increase in sales price was pure profit.

  66. nomadic Says:

    Correction, the new house is nearly 10x the size. Here’s what was there:
    Beds: 1
    Baths: 1.0
    Finished Sqft: 695
    Unfinished Sqft: –
    Total Sqft: 695
    Floors: 1

    The new McMansion:
    Beds: 6
    Baths: 7.5
    Sq. Ft.: 5,904
    Floors: 2

  67. Real Estater Says:

    Nomadic,

    A couple of questions you need to ask yourself:

    1. How much per square feet was the original house sold for?

    2. How much profit do you think was made from this deal overall, taking into account construction cost spent by the builder?

  68. nomadic Says:

    You completely missed the point. But that’s all right. I don’t expect you to comprehend.

  69. Real Estater Says:

    Don’t worry, I get the point. I should be worried about foreclosures hitting my neighborhood and prices going down the toilet.

  70. SEA Says:

    “Don’t worry, I get the point.”

    Yup–he’s been putting us on the whole time.

  71. very amused Says:

    RE says: >> Thanks for the laugh. This is what they said last year. Supposedly interest rate was going to rise too, and foreclosures were going to inundate the market.<<

    Good thing you didn't listen to what "they" say! All those idiots warning us interest and mortgage rates are going up! Ha ha! What idiot believed mortgage rates would rise during a credit crunch?

  72. Real Estater Says:

    #70, Please refrain from personal attacks, baiting, and violation of our Bay Area spirit.

  73. Sunny(vale) Kim Says:

    That’s right. Don’t believe the Wall Street Journal, Business Week, or Bloomberg.
    —–

    We trust only ”preeminent economist”. We don’t believe those who make living writing for Wall Street Journal, Business Week, or Bloomberg.

  74. Real Estater Says:

    We’ve gone over the Dow discussion plenty of times, and the consensus was that RE provided sound real-time advice that is rarely seen even in online forums. When the market was down, RE was the only person who dared to make the call. Needless to say, everyone is familiar with RE’s call on the purchase of his investment properties, which were consummated months ahead of the Bloomberg article. If I were you, Pralay, I’d be looking forward to RE’s next call.

  75. Real Estater Says:

    Speaking of amusement, the most amusing and recurring phenomenon here is that RE’s most definitive statements are typically met with laughter and skepticism from Pralay and Bob. The end game is always the same. Here are some classic examples:

    – Buy Dow at 6000
    – Buy 2 investment properties
    Freedom and prosperity in China

    Moral of the story: Think outside the box. You just might make some money.

  76. Real Estater Says:

    Here’s another laugher:

    >>All those idiots warning us interest and mortgage rates are going up! Ha ha! What idiot believed mortgage rates would rise during a credit crunch?

    The guy thinks interest rate will not rise and inflation will not come. It’s like thinking big earthquake will not come because it didn’t happen last week.

  77. SEA Says:

    “It’s like thinking big earthquake will not come because it didn’t happen last week.”

    Are you suggesting it is possible to have a shakeup in the RBA?

  78. very amused Says:

    RE says >> We’ve gone over the Dow discussion plenty of times, and the consensus was that RE provided sound real-time advice that is rarely seen even in online forums. <<

    Consensus?

    You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.

  79. Sunny(vale) Kim Says:

    When Real Estater talks about “consensus” he really means
    – He
    – Himself
    – SV Shopper
    – Banker East
    – San Jose Craig

  80. Sunny(vale) Kim Says:

    If I were you, Pralay, I’d be looking forward to RE’s next call.
    —–

    Everyone is looking forward. In fact the ONLY reason ALL the readers read Burbed blog in regular basis is to get RE’s forecast. If I was Burbed, I would capitalize it by charging $20 monthly fee for online access to this blog.

  81. Real Estater Says:

    >>You keep using that word.

    Pralay keeps on rehashing the same stuff over and over. My intention was to say let’s move on. We’ve talked about it multiple times and consensus was drawn. No need to revisit it again hoping someone new would fall for the misleading characterization.

  82. SEA Says:

    #80- “rehashing the same stuff over and over.”

    Like interest rates are going up?

  83. nomadic Says:

    No need to revisit it again hoping someone new would fall for the misleading characterization.

    True enough. The misleading characterization being that there ever was consensus.

  84. madhaus Says:

    Of course we have consensus. Everyone except #80 and his various socks think he’s an arrogant blowhard. While he does stumble across the interesting listing or article, he never draws any useful conclusions from the content. In fact, he usually manages to get it as off as possible.

    The disagreement is over whether he’s annoying or unintentional comic relief.

    #78, a few more known sockpuppets:

    Top Dog
    Chris D
    Juju
    Possibly SamAdu

    And don’t forget his original Techie persona.

  85. madhaus Says:

    #74, any more posts such as this one calling out non-participants in a discussion will be removed entirely. This is your last warning.

    Confine your discussions to ideas, not the people or groups who hold them. Abusive or derogatory comments will be removed in full, even if 99% complies.

    You have used up all your Slack.

  86. Real Estater Says:

    >>#74, any more posts such as this one calling out non-participants in a discussion will be removed entirely. This is your last warning.

    Unless your rules are enforced uniformly, you can go to hell.

    Rest removed, for obvious reasons.

  87. Real Estater Says:

    >>#78, a few more known sockpuppets:

    Top Dog
    Chris D
    Juju
    Possibly SamAdu

    I am sick and tired of these empty charges.

    Rest of whining deleted.

  88. madhaus Says:

    It’s not a good idea to tell the moderator to go to hell. Ta-ta.

  89. Sunny(vale) Kim Says:

    I am sick and tired of these empty charges. Do you have any proof?
    —-

    We don’t need proof. It’s general “consensus”.

  90. madhaus Says:

    Everyone, please move on.

  91. Real Estater Says:

    >>It’s not a good idea to tell the moderator to go to hell.

    Removed for playing mod

  92. SEA Says:

    It’s too tough to be civil?

  93. Real Estater posting with insulting name Says:

    >>We don’t need proof. It’s general “consensus”.

    You can’t handle the truth.

  94. Real Estater posting with insulting name Says:

    >>It’s too tough to be civil?

    It’s called Civil Disobedience.

  95. madhaus Says:

    Time for you to go back to your room.

  96. Sunny(vale) Kim Says:

    You can’t handle the truth.
    —-

    That’s not a general “consensus”.

    BTW, looks like pool party is not going that well.

  97. madhaus Says:

    #95. Enough.

  98. Real Estater posting with insulting name Says:

    Removed

  99. bmwman91 Says:

    #50>> bmwman91,

    If you can come up with the down payment, now is a good time to buy a house. Interest rate is low, and prices are lower than it will be next year, when Facebook money hits the streets. The worst case is that you’ll have a place to live in without having to worry about rent increases.

    By the way, why mod an old BMW? You can’t make an old lady young by adding accessories. Get a newer Porsche 911 and you’re all set.

    Oh, my fiancee & I have plenty of down payment. We could put 10-20% down on a fixer-upper SFH on MV right now if we wanted. The thing is that we don’t think it is worth it. I see where your perspective comes from, and I disagree that there is urgency. MV is stagnated at an inflated price point currently, in my opinion. Having FB move to Menlo Park is hit #1 to all the people with overvalued properties that are holding-out. The fact that most FB folks have stock awards that vest over 4-5 years is hit #2 since there won’t be THAT many millionaires (none of which that want to commute 20 miles on 101 daily). Anyway, we can all make claims about housing & only time will tell who is right. At the end of the day, I’d rather spend less money to get a detached garage & pool in San Jose/Santa Clara & deal with the commute than spend 30-50% more to get a dilapidated MV shitbox. I’ve done the 10-20 mile commute on a bike & it is not big deal for me…and faster than driving on a lot of days.

    Why old BMWs? Because it is fun. It’s a hobby more than anything, and has kept me passionate about engineering. I actually have zero interest in really fast sports cars these days. There is literally nowhere to enjoy that kind of car, unless I want to end up dead or in jail. I put my first old BMW into a tree 6 years ago & was lucky to walk away. Having raced at BMWCCA events, it is pretty clear to me that having a fast daily driver is pointless. That’s just my experience though.

    #63>> bmwman91, bob and you should hang out.
    Is Bob a fan of unreliable old German metal like I am?

  100. Real Estater Says:

    Removed for attack on third party

  101. Real Estater Says:

    Removed

  102. very amused Says:

    Looks like we missed the afternoon fireworks show!

  103. nomadic Says:

    bmwman91 is far too level-headed to have a “discussion” with RE. BTW, bob is a fan of cars in general. I think he’s re-discovering the potential of Detroit metal.

    It’s funny how much “Face Book” means to RE considering the site is blocked in his beloved China. As far as they’re concerned, the site doesn’t exist.

  104. very amused Says:

    RE, everyone knows you are same poster as SV Shopper. Here is proof.

    In this thread, SV Shopper:
    >> There is totally no inventory right now. All that’s available are junks, and even those are receiving multiple offers. Looks like buyers have to either settle for second choice city or wait in line until all the IPO folks are done. >>

    Does anyone else say junks?

    >> RealEstater Says:
    January 17th, 2008 at 10:30 am
    Don’t know why this kind of house is so prevalent in the Bay Area. You don’t see these junks in southern Cal, or in other states as much. 730 sq. ft.? What were they thinking when they built them? >>

    >> Real Estater Says:
    January 12th, 2010 at 9:49 pm
    Bob,

    I’m wondering what you could possibly be worried about. As you admitted all of your belongings were either free stuff or junk bought at garage sales. By not locking your door the worst it can happen is that some junks could be hauled away — for free. The service is worth more than the stuff itself. >>

    >> SV Shopper Says:
    December 24th, 2010 at 3:41 pm
    Good luck buying anything right now. There’s no inventory anywhere, except for junks like this. It’s out of my price range anyways. I can’t wait until Spring returns. We definitely want to get into a house next year before interest rate shoots up further. >>

    >>Techie Says:
    December 5th, 2007 at 11:26 pm
    It’s hard to imagine that a region with some of the highest prices in the nation is full of junks within its housing stock. The two houses combined can barely count as one decent property. >>

    We know Techie is RE, because the Gravatar matched. Thanks Pralay!

    >> Real Estater Says:
    January 23rd, 2010 at 8:01 pm
    Bob,

    When sales jump by 44%, it means homes are selling. With this kind of momentum, home prices are headed up. Your style of saving is suited for people who have no clue on how to create wealth. It also involves all kinds of sacrifices like living in a crappy east bay neighborhood dotted by foreclosures, enduring a long commute, living a life of low standard surrounded by garage sale junks; having no children, no family life, etc. Shall we start a new version of the reality show “The Ultimate Loser”?>>

    >> Real Estater Says:
    April 15th, 2009 at 2:41 am
    Gotta say this again; these high density developments are all junks designed to maximize the developer’s profits. It’s amazing how tightly packed they are. They even squeezed in several units facing the intersection of El Camino and Charleston. Each unit has very little land beneath it. You’ll get plenty of exercise running up and down the stairs. I hear that parking is a problem due to the number of people living in the buildings. The fact that people pay nearly a million bucks for such craps demonstrates the intensity of the demand for anything in Palo Alto. I remember when I went to check out these condos during construction, the salesperson said there’s a long waiting list. >>

    madhaus noticed the same thing down the thread! Damn you!

    >> madhaus Says:
    April 15th, 2009 at 2:41 pm

    Does anyone here who speaks English as a Second Language recognize RE’s tendency to separate compound words, coupled with really odd plurals such as craps and junks? I’ve seen ignorance and I’ve seen First Language influencing another, and RE has curious trademarks of both. >>

    >> RealEstater Says:
    September 15th, 2008 at 10:37 pm
    Herve,

    I happen to agree with most of the comments. Palo Alto has done a good job of building a nice community, and now everybody wants a piece of it by building high density junks, which allows the government to mandate affordable housing units. The greedy builders don’t mind spoiling the community as long as they can make profit. >>

    >> RealEstater Says:
    September 15th, 2008 at 11:07 pm

    I’m just glad I don’t live in South PA where most of these junks are built. Schools will be flooded and traffic will get worse. >>

    >> Real Estater Says:
    January 19th, 2009 at 9:20 am
    Let me say a few words about the follow properties so the amateurs don’t bring them up again:

    http://www.redfin.com/CA/PALO-ALTO/4240-Juniper-Ln-94306/home/16893503/ebrd-40374585

    http://www.redfin.com/CA/PALO-ALTO/425-Alder-Ln-94306/home/17885808

    Such new constructions are all junks. They’re all built as part of a community of high density housing aimed to maximize developer profits. You’ll find extremely small lot sizes, lousy locations, and association fees. The traditional Palo Alto buyers would never look at these. Currently, there are too many of these craps cropping up all over South Palo Alto. They form their own sub-market, and that market is saturated. Even more are coming in the next few years. >>

    junks and craps!

    >> Real Estater Says:
    January 29th, 2008 at 11:31 pm

    Just because something is expensive doesn’t mean it’s overvalued. It could be because it’s highly valued. For example, I consider many houses in non-real Bay Area neighborhoods overvalued at $600K. You see those junks on Burbed all the time. However, if you find something in Palo Alto/Los Altos/Menlo Park/Cupertino (“real” Bay Area) in the low $1million range, it can very well be a bargain, and these homes are in fact highly saught after. >>

    >> Real Estater Says:
    January 21st, 2009 at 8:52 pm
    Yesterday I said the pretenders are going to fall in this economic downturn. We need to start featuring some of these on Burbed, rather than just the obvious junks. >>

    This is just the first two pages of a Google search. Three other people used the word junks, madhaus, nomadic and rick. First two probably on purpose, since madhaus noticed junks back in 2009 and both of them used it in quotes. Other junks person was Rick. So rick is either RE or maybe same language group as RE. Rick never said ‘craps’ and wasn’t an obvious housing bull.

  105. Real Estater Says:

    very amused,

    And who are you the same as? Why hiding behind a new name when you talking about the same junks? :-)

  106. very amused Says:

    >> very amused,

    And who are you the same as? Why hiding behind a new name when you talking about the same junks? >>

    I am very amused you changed the subject. You agree you are SV Shopper? Who else are you besides SVS and Techie?

  107. tuno Says:

    #103 – wow, that was great!!!!! I noticed the “junks” expression too, and remembered that RE had used it in the past (what a strange expression; I’ve never seen it before reading this blog), but I would never have had the stamina to track down the proof. wow. that is so funny.

  108. tuno Says:

    I suppose that a lot of expressions are coined by illiterates – “junks” and “craps” could be appearing here on burbed for the first time anywhere – but in a decade you’ll be able to find them in the OED!

  109. SV Shopper Says:

    I hereby declare I am not RE. Anyone saying otherwise is lying. Tuno is probably one of the fakes. Google the word illiterate and you’ll see what I mean. I don’t know why you guys waste so much time on irrelevant junks (yeah I said it again, big f00king deal).

    Yes, I bid again last month and lost again. Wife’s friends tell me the same happened to them several times as well. If someone tells you they walked in and got a house like buying a car, they must be in Texas.

  110. nomadic Says:

    #108, you can’t be trying too hard if you can’t buy a house after two years. Or you have champagne taste and a beer budget. Maybe it would be a good idea to save up some more money and take a break from house hunting.

  111. SEA Says:

    It makes me wonder why both SV Shopper and RE must declare that they are not the other.

    Maybe I need to do the same?

    “I hereby declare I am not RE.”

    Or maybe I should declare that I am not SV Shopper?

    My guess: They are sibling parrots who learned a few select phrases.

    “Now is the right time to buy.”
    “You’ll be priced out forever.”
    “Junks are for rentards.”


  112. SEA Says:

    #109- He’s just complaining that he’s been priced out forever. You know, the price of property is going up faster than his income and savings. He missed the bus, and now he’ll never be able to catch up…

  113. Sunny(vale) Kim Says:

    I hereby declare I am not RE. Anyone saying otherwise is lying.
    —-

    Real Estater:

    Have a sense of humour. It will help you live longer!

    SV Shopper (no link because of spam filter):

    My reference to Madison Ave. was in response to #114 (by Burbed). Where is your sense of humour?

    Both spells humor as humour. What a coincidence! Not many Americans spell that way.

  114. Sunny(vale) Kim Says:

    Second link for SV Shopper.

  115. Sunny(vale) Kim Says:

    you can’t be trying too hard if you can’t buy a house after two years.
    —-

    Only two years? Are you kidding? In 2009 he said he is already here for three years. That means total FIVE YEARS now! His “big-on-education” must have gone crazy after all the losing bids. :)

    And where is Banker East? He also moved here from “Manhatten”. Did he start losing bids too?

  116. madhaus Says:

    #103, wow! If I hadn’t already been convinced, that removed all doubt whatsoever. Excellent!

    #108, you’re s o cute. A sock indignantly declaring he isn’t a sock. Who else do we know who goes on the offensive when proven to be making “craps” up? See what’s left of #85 and #86.

    Face it, sockpuppetry requires writing ability. Writing requires attention to detail, and that’s not something you’ve demonstrated here as a strong suit. And *that* is why every single one of your socks is unmasked (yeesh, that’s a terrible mixed metaphor) pretty danged quickly. (There’s one other reason, but I am not going to make this any easier for you, hee hee.)

    There’s no need to post IP addresses, because those prove *nothing*. Anyone can take a laptop or a smartphone to “Star Bucks” and collect a diferent IP. But style is very difficult to hide if you don’t know enough to even know it’s *there*.

  117. Sunny(vale) Sockpuppet Kim Says:

    A sock indignantly declaring he isn’t a sock.
    —-

    I hereby declare I am not Pralay. Anyone saying otherwise is lying. Madhaus is probably one of the fakes. Google the word illiterate and you’ll see what I mean. I don’t know why you guys waste so much time on irrelevant junks (yeah I said it again, big f00king deal).

  118. nomadic Says:

    No need to post IP addresses because we really don’t care that much. Even if proven wrong (we’re not), it’s fun to get the socks in a bunch with their indignation.

  119. SEA Says:

    I like seeing posts from each personality, regardless if multiple ones come from the same person.

  120. JuJu Says:

    How did I get dragged into the mud? Craps! This place has gone insane.

  121. nomadic Says:

    If it makes you feel better, JuJu, I don’t think you’re a sock puppet. Same goes for SamAdu.

  122. very amused Says:

    SEA, you see different personalities? They look like ten-pack of matching socks.

    Try a search for some of these other words.

    >> Real Estater Says:
    April 1st, 2010 at 10:59 pm e
    Really glad someone found an old post. It just goes to prove that everything I’ve been saying is consistent. I’ve always said that’s the price range of home I owned, and that’s the interest rate I got (until I refinanced to an even lower rate). Some people accused me of lying about my zip. Hope that’s put to rest now. >>

    >> Real Estater Says:
    March 3rd, 2010 at 11:32 pm
    Pralay,

    Did you read #8? In other words, you think I’m lying because you are reading a lagging indicator while I’m providing real time information. >>

    Others when asked to prove things they say provide facts or say they will look for proof. RE and ‘personalities’ accuse people of calling him a liar.

  123. JuJu Says:

    Thank you. It’s called throwing out the baby with the bath water.

  124. very amused Says:

    Craps! I didn’t do bold right. If one of the sock-admins could fix this, please?

  125. SEA Says:

    “They look like ten-pack of matching socks.”

    Reach in the dryer and grab two of the twenty, and you’re sure to have a matched pair.

  126. Alex Says:

    #107,

    craps = a game, for entertainment or to satisfy an addiction, wagered on the roll of a pair of dice

    junks = what you get when you gamble and buy the right-side-of-the-street-RBA-crapboxes

    crabs = what you get when you tap Real Estater’s wife in the junks. Can anyone tell me of a good treatment? LOL

    divorces = what happens when your spouses get mad at you for buying junks and the bottom fall out.

  127. very amused Says:

    >> Thank you. It’s called throwing out the baby with the bath water. >>

    Bath water, JuJu? Bath water?

  128. bmwman91 Says:

    Haha, I love this place. I have to say that the level of discussion here is refreshingly intelligent in comparison to YouTube commentary. As long as each entry doesn’t turn into a “911 Truth” argument, I think this place has potential!

  129. bmwman91 Says:

    Holy geez! I just went & talked with the leasing office at my complex about 1BR rental units (my current 3BR lease ends this month). A month ago a 1BR was already $1860. NOW the “cheapest” 1BR is $2230/month!!! Bwahahahahahhaa. How about “RENT now or be priced out forever!” The hell with this place, my 3BR is $2312/month. Off to the multi-lingual corner of MV with me, where rent is $1200 less per month!

    Other “luxury” living complexes (Avalon, Archstone) have prices of $1850 for 1BR units listed online. I mentioned that to the leasing office here. They said that they called those places & apparently those “special deals” are for people with low income. HAHHAAHA. People that work for their money have to pay a premium & start at $2200 there too. Low-income earners in Avalon-type joints….puhleasssseeeee. MVCA can kiss my ass.

  130. JuJu Says:

    SEA and very amused are the same pair.

  131. Alex Says:

    bmwman,

    sounds like you rent with Prometheus. These fcktards raise rent by $200-400 each time, I’ve heard. I’m bracing to see my rent on the next renewal.

  132. JuJu Says:

    I got slapped by a 10% rent increase two months ago, that’s why I’ll be looking to by as soon as I save up enough for down payment.

  133. bmwman91 Says:

    Prometheus…right on. The previous office staff was cool. I got them to LOWER my rent by $100/mo when I signed my 3rd year lease last year

    My current $2313 would go to $2560 on a 6-month lease on my 3BR. When I brought up negotiating, I was informed that there wasn’t room for it since the 3BR unit next to the train tracks goes for $3100 now & it wouldn’t be “fair” to those folks. I was advised, candidly, that I should move somewhere cheaper (the guy at the desk was nice, and was probably mostly sincere). I have a feeling that it was half good-intentions, and half, “you are asking questions you obviously aren’t stupid. BUT, suckers are plentiful so get out so we can milk $3100+ from your unit.”

    Any recommendations on a safe complex with a pool & HONEST management within 10 miles of 85 & 101? I am spoiled by my current 2 mile bike-commute, but I am willing to ride a lot further if I can find a 1BR for under $1000. Preferably south of 101 (Campbell / Santa Clara). Mariachi music is not a plus. Thanks guys!

  134. bmwman91 Says:

    #131>> I got slapped by a 10% rent increase two months ago, that’s why I’ll be looking to by as soon as I save up enough for down payment.

    Where are you looking to buy & how much do you plan to plunk down? I’d definitely wait for the winter if I were you. The summer “selling frenzy” has not been as productive as a lot of loawners have been hoping & they might be more willing to deal once it sets in.

  135. JuJu Says:

    I’m looking to buy medium cheap, as opposed to cheap cheap, if you get what I mean. I’m thinking west SJ, Santa Clara, Sunnyvale, worst case Fremont. Want to keep the price under $500k. Will trade up later. Just want to stop bleeding rent right now.

  136. DreamT Says:

    bmwdudewhojustturned20 – I have an acquaintance who rents a 2 bedroom apartment on California Ave. a bit before Rengstorff. Management is a level-headed, seasoned lady who lives on premise and has been managing the place forever. The place itself has been safe, abuts Rengstorff park. The complex is called “King”, there are a few similar ones left and right on that street but I don’t know what they’re worth.
    And the complex has a pool.

  137. DreamT Says:

    #134 – 500k is not a lot of money™.

  138. bmwman91 Says:

    #135

    Thanks. I was thinking about those units. I’ll drop by some of the managers’ offices at lunch tomorrow.

    And the “91” refers to the car’s age, not mine :p, although it would be nice if I was still 20, in college & totally oblivious to real living expenses!

  139. very amused Says:

    Juju/bath water! Now you say I am SEA? Just like RE to change subject!

    SEA likes math too much. I like words. Here are two words for you: bath water.

    RE makes claims without support. Can you show I am SEA? Or did your proof go down the drain?

    Incoming change of subject!

  140. SEA Says:

    I am very amused.

  141. JuJu Says:

    You “two” posting one after the other just proves my point.

  142. SEA Says:

    Yea, because two different people couldn’t possibly post so close in time to each other.

  143. very amused Says:

    Staying on the offensive? How RE-like! Not responding to direct statements? How RE-like! Where’s your proof, bath water? None! So RE-like I can smell the foot odor.

    SEA, post some math or something.

    BMW dude, good posts.

  144. JuJu Says:

    Who cares about RE. Why are you side-tracking? Don’t let a little “offense” get to you, dude!

  145. Hot Dog Says:

    Hey, this looks like fun. Someone forgot to include me. very amused, SEA, RE, Sunnyvale Kim are actually all one person. We are doing this to generate traffic for Burbed. Don’t fuck it up!

  146. JuJu Says:

    Might as well do blanket attack. You won’t miss anybody.

  147. bob Says:

    BMWman,
    Sounds like you have some common sense. While I realize that basically everyone in Silicon Valley thinks the East Bay is the “Slough of despair”, I rent a fairly nice house, with a nice yard and a garage for pretty cheap. Of course my situation is a little bit unique in that the landlord hasn’t raised rent in years. But you can definitely rent a lot cheaper here. Just like real estate in Silicon Valley, rent in SV is also ludicrously overpriced. Yeah- the East Bay is further away, but with the new changes made on the 92/880 interchange I’m getting home in 35 minutes. Not bad given that I would bet people who live in SV probably spend at least that long battling the congested traffic in and around Menlo Park, Palo Alto, and other crammed-up neighborhoods. I know because I used to work in Palo Alto and it usually took me 20 minutes just to get to the freeway.

  148. Real Estater Says:

    You “used to” work in Palo Alto, Bob? Care to give us an update on your job switch?

  149. Real Estater Says:

    bmwman91,

    Just a few words of advice regarding your rent situation. The market is indeed very tight. I have prospective tenants offering to sign a two year lease with me, and I declined because I know I will be raising rent. In any case, don’t give up your current place until you know you can find a better deal. Chances are your landlord is able to charge that rate because every other comparable place is charging that rate.
    I’m not sure about that area near Rengstorff. You might need to learn Spanish. Then again, it’s easier than learning Korean.

  150. Real Estater Says:

    In case you still don’t see it coming, renters are going to get f**ked soon if not already. Rent rising is not your imagination. Things will only accelerate from here. With interest rate at all time low, it is really time to consider buying a permanent pad.

  151. tuno Says:

    I am very amused as well!!!!

  152. Real Estater Says:

    Bob,

    I think you’re in a rather unique situation. If one day your landlord wakes up, or if the house changes ownership, you’ll be out on the street. Even in the East Bay rent is on the rise, due to some folks being displaced from other areas to flee high prices. I’m still getting calls from people wanting to rent my property in Tracy.

    Btw, haven’t heard you talk about moving to Austin lately. Is that still in the cards or have you changed your mind?

  153. bob Says:

    RE,
    what concern is my professional situation to you? I’m doing quite well, but thanks for asking.

    As far as your assessment of renters gettin’ %#%#, well most people I know who rent are still paying a LOT less than they would if they bought. My rent is still around 1/3rd the cost of buying the equivalent house. That means more money for me to save and invest in investments that actually makes money- versus wasting it on “investment” property. As I’ve tirelessly mentioned before- anyone that claims real estate is the best investment one can make needs to seriously invest in some basic econ 101 books.

  154. bob Says:

    I think you’re in a rather unique situation. If one day your landlord wakes up, or if the house changes ownership, you’ll be out on the street. Even in the East Bay rent is on the rise, due to some folks being displaced from other areas to flee high prices. I’m still getting calls from people wanting to rent my property in Tracy.

    Btw, haven’t heard you talk about moving to Austin lately. Is that still in the cards or have you changed your mind?

    The landlord isn’t going to “wake up” because we take good care of the house. My parents at one time owned 2 rental properties. I’d say about 50% of the tenants seriously trashed the houses. That gets reaallll expensive. Good renters are worth keeping. If we got good renters we wouldn’t raise the rent either. t saves money in the long run. And no- if the worse case scenario happened we would not be “out on the street”. Last time I checked where we live there is a 10% rental vacancy rate. There is a plentiful supply of houses for rent and all are within our price range. So no worries there.

    As far as the Austin plans, well those are still in the works. The neighborhoods I would want to live in are a bit pricier than other parts of the city. As in around 300k or so. The same house in a similar neighborhood in Palo Alto would probably be 1 million. But the plan has been to stash away lots of cash, stash away a lot into retirement funds, and then move, rent for a year or so, and then buy for cash, have some leftover, and be in good shape retirement-wise. I had thought 150k would do it. But apparently not and I would like to have a comfortable cushion in addition to the “house money”.

    You might say I’ve mellowed out a tad. Sure- the Bay Area is nice. I’ve got a good job, a nice house we rent for cheap, and so on and so on. But the Bay Area is still too expensive for our tastes and one day we’ll be out of here. There is no rush as the housing market and rental market isn’t going anywhere, we’re saving up a lot, and our jobs are pretty stable. SO in the meantime we’ll stick around.

  155. Petsmart groomer Says:

    > The neighborhoods I would want to live in are a bit pricier than other parts of the city. As in around 300k or so. The same house in a similar neighborhood in Palo Alto would probably be 1 million.

    So you’d like to live next to the freeway or train tracks?

  156. bob Says:

    So you’d like to live next to the freeway or train tracks?

    Oh… right. I forgot that 1 mil gets you nuttin’ in Palo Alto. I guess a 300k house in a nice area in Austin would be more like 2-3 mil in PA.

  157. madhaus Says:

    #155, would you be willing to share some listings that are typical of the neighborhoods in Austin you’ve looked at? Maybe we can figure out how much it would sell for in some places around the Bay Area.

    What would you figure this $300K place would sell for in Alameda?

    #150, what is this, We Are All Khaled Saidvery amused?

  158. madhaus Says:

    PS #116 is right, I am one of the fakes.

  159. madhaus Says:

    #121, fixing it now.

  160. bob Says:

    yessss… Number One-Fifty-Six ( said like the mission controller in James Bond Doctor No)

    The specific neighborhoods I am eyeing in Austin are the Circle C and South Austin areas. As far as specific listings, well we’re not in house-hunting mode at this point so I have no specific listings. But these are nice, convenient areas. They’re in a price range I find favorable. Not sure what else I can say. Not sure why its important to compare as it is what it is.

  161. madhaus Says:

    #159, um… because we’re on a real estate blog?

  162. bob Says:

    Yes- and that was precisely what we were discussing, correct? If talking about renting, houses, the bay area and Austin aren’t related to real estate perhaps we should talk about breakfast cereal instead.

  163. madhaus Says:

    Yes, #161, which is why I suggested a few listings from Austin so we could come up with a few comparisons. It’s silly to make up numbers when there are real places for sale both there and here.

    Oh well, a gal can dream, can’t she?

  164. Petsmart groomer Says:

    http://www.redfin.com/TX/Austin/11311-Pompey-Ct-78739/home/31805789

  165. bob Says:

    There’s nothing to compare here. There are certain neighborhoods I like and in Circle C the average price is around $320,000. The average in South Austin is $300,000. Hence why I said the average price for the two is 300k. Circle C is considered one of the nicer parts of Austin, and thus one could make the loose assessment that if we were to compare an equivalent desirable neighborhood in the Bay Area- like Palo Alto or Menlo Park, where the median is somewhere around a million buxs plus or minus a few hundred thousand and wallah- the reasoning behind my statement. Either way I’ve explained my position enough. Hopefully that explanation suffices.

  166. madhaus Says:

    #163, look at all them bricks. They’d all fall apart during an earthquake like those special cubes in Super 8!

    Oh, wait, did I spoil the movie for you? Here’s another spoiler.

  167. Real Estater Says:

    It sounds like Bob is just throwing numbers around without really knowing what is worth what. Somehow a $1M house in Palo Alto changes to $2-3M. Big difference there, considering he is trying to save up $150K. By the way, this is a $1M house in Palo Alto. If you live in this type of house in Texas, you’d be dead because it would not keep out the elements.

  168. Real Estater Says:

    Bob,

    Why don’t you just move out to Tracy? It’s only 1 hour away from San Francisco, and houses cost less than Austin. You can retire NOW!

  169. madhaus Says:

    #166, my shack doesn’t keep out the elements either. Last time I checked, we had a whole-house nitrogen and oxygen infestation.

  170. Real Landlord Says:

    I have prospective tenants offering to sign a two year lease with me,
    —–

    So true! I also started getting calls. Although I already have an tenant occupied in my rental, but all the prospective tenants are getting my phone number from yellow pages (I have my yellow page entry with name “Real Landlord”) and offering to sign five year lease. Funny thing is that one of them asked me – “Kick the current tenant out. I will give you $500K cash. I want to move in your rental right now”.
    I declined. You know, $500K is not lot of money in bay area.

  171. tuno Says:

    #163 – ick!! that looks like a cross between an elementary school and a fire house and a 1950s cape. unsee, unsee!

  172. SEA Says:

    “SEA, post some math or something.”

    I’ve noticed that I keep getting older, but high school girls seem to stay the same age.

  173. very amused Says:

    >> “SEA, post some math or something.”

    I’ve noticed that I keep getting older, but high school girls seem to stay the same age. <<

    I am very amused you think that. But everything reminds you of high school girls. That includes compound interest rates.

  174. DreamT Says:

    “I’m not sure about that area near Rengstorff. You might need to learn Spanish.”

    Or you might not. See, RE, A leisurely stroll along that street shows much more folks of your ethnicity than of the Mariachi variety. And yes, I don’t mean “white”.
    The place I pointed out is on the “good” side of Rengstorff Ave.. It’s not San Antonio and it’s not Latham.
    In all fairness I had the same misconception as you initially. The demographics makeup was unexpected.

  175. bmwman91 Says:

    Thanks for the pointers. I am going to ride over to the apartments at lunch & talk to the management about openings. I lived in Stockton for 5 years during college…I really shouldn’t be scared of anything in Mountain View. I guess I’ve gotten soft over time lol.

    I’m still trying to stay out of the east bay. I don’t really mind it all that much as far as a place to live, but if I can avoid a commute I will. 880/237 is shitty. Not driving is worth $100-200 per month in gas and wear & tear, at least. Remember, old German car (in its defense, it does pull 30-32MPG on the highway & 25-26 around town).

  176. madhaus Says:

    #174, have you considered renting a house instead of an apartment? If you can find someone you could stand sharing a large enough place with, you could have a 4/2 for under $3000 a month, your share would be $1500 or less. Plus you get a garage for the bmw!

    I rented a series of shared houses and liked that a lot more than throwing rent away on my own apartment. The only downside is the shared living, but with a big enough house it can work pretty well.

  177. bob Says:

    I would agree with Madhaus: renting a house with a few other folks can be a good deal. We’ve done it for years and its worked out well. The other housemate works opposite shifts and is seldom home, eats out, and is generally not around. In turn we get to rent a fairly large house for pretty cheap. Our part works out to be about $1,500 a month. For our part we get an office, a bedroom, and an extra bedroom for guests. Been doing this for almost 9 years so far. The same house bought would probably carry a $3,500 a month mortgage.

    And as far as the east bay and its traffic… have you driven from there to SV lately? As of last week a major intersection was opened getting rid of that awful bottleneck where 92 and 880 join. Used to be 20 minutes of waiting there. Now its smooth sailing all the way. Used to take me an hour to get home. Now it takes 30-35 minutes. How long does it take you now?

    Just sayin’. The East Bay can be a good deal. That said I understand wanting to live closer. Its not for everybody. Good luck.

  178. Real Estater Says:

    >>Our part works out to be about $1,500 a month. For our part we get an office, a bedroom, and an extra bedroom for guests. Been doing this for almost 9 years so far.

    So all this time you’ve telling us how great a deal you’ve been getting, it’s for sharing a house! I think $1500 is about the right price in the market place, because the demand for such an arrangement in an East Bay Location is not exactly acceptable to a large number of people. Usually it’s only for people who are recently out of school or have to settle due to financial reasons.

  179. Petsmart groomer Says:

    bob, you forget to mention you can also recycle the aluminum cans your housemate drinks from. Cha-ching!

  180. Real Estater Says:

    madhaus says,
    >>I rented a series of shared houses and liked that a lot more than throwing rent away on my own apartment.

    She finally let it slip: Renting is like throwing money away.

    My suggestion is try to get a spot on the bachelor or bachelorette show. You will get free shared housing. If that doesn’t work, jail is another option.

  181. SEA Says:

    If you think renting is like throwing money away, just remember, often you’re tossing out less than owning.

  182. nomadic Says:

    uh, #179, I hate to nitpick but she was comparing two kinds of rental arrangements. Renting a shared house was better than renting her own apartment…

  183. bmwman91 Says:

    bob,
    My commute is currently a 7 minute bike ride. Yes, of course I am totally spoiled with that. I wouldn’t expect to be able to do that without paying soem sort of premium. 880 & 92 to MV…I don’t think I’d care for that.

    Mountain View, and even some seedier parts of Sunnyvale are blowing up in prices. Santa Clara seems to be where I am heading. Actually, maybe I will just keep my 3BR at $2560 & have a roommate for a few more months. I actually don’t really mind…but my fiancee is getting the itch to have “our own” place. It’s going to cost us, apparently.

  184. bob Says:

    bmwman,
    Totally understand. If I had a 7 minute commute I’d be hard pressed to change. I’ve only ever had at least a 30 minute commute so I’m used to it. The housemate thing has worked out for us basically because the housemate is never home. We’re lucky if we see him once a week for 5 minutes. So its like having a house for ourselves.

    RE, I’m sure this is pointless to say but where do you get that the East Bay is so awful? Truthfully a lot of the families in our neighborhood moved FROM places like SF and SV to have kids and start families. Thus your comment about it being undesirable doesn’t hold water. I myself don’t particularly care for any of the SV communities, but then again that’s based off of my tastes. Everyone has a different idea of what an ideal community is.

  185. Petsmart groomer Says:

    bob, check this out: The Next Big Boom Towns in the U.S.

    #1: Austin, TX
    #2: Raleigh, NC
    #3: Nashville, TN
    #4: San Antonio, TX
    #5: Houston, TX

  186. no estater Says:

    Time to get in on the ground floor! Buy now or be priced out forever!

  187. bob Says:

    PetsmartGroomer,
    That’s not really news. Most of those cities have been “booming” for around a decade. Most relocation sites are crammed with people from the coasts moving to Austin, Raleigh, Nashville, and so on. If you wanted to get in on the ground floor its too late. The thing about most of these cities- perhaps Nashville excluded- is that if you want to live in a cookie-cutter Mcmansion in an anonymous looking subdivision, you can do so for dirt-cheap. If you want to live in a neighborhood full of old Craftsman homes close to town with the smell of gentrification then you’ll have to pay more. A lot more.

    Austin-for TX- is not cheap. $300,000 or so for something halfway decent in one of the nicer neighborhoods. That and you’ll pay 3% in property taxes even though there is no income tax.

    My 2 lines of thought are that either we pay more to live in a nicer area or we pay less to live in the sticks. I don’t want to live in cookie-cutterville and unfortunately neither do any of the other yuppies moving from Cali and the West Coast. Hence why most of the cool old neighborhoods are pricey. South Austin used to be more of a bohemian type of neighborhood. Now its all gentrified. On the other hand these are relatively small cities and you can be out in the country in 30 minutes or so depending on what freeway you take. I grew up in the sticks thus that to me is perfectly fine.

    We will see…

  188. bmwman91 Says:

    Just some updates on my Mountain View apartment seeking.

    a) Last week 1BRs here were going for $2200. This week is it $2300 (and 6 weeks ago it was $1860).

    b) The 3BR I leased for $2312 a year ago is now going at $3400.

    c) I went to see a listing for a $1200 1BR in a 4-plex a few blocks from Castro. I got there and there were ~12 people waiting in the parking lot, some with manilla folders (presumably containing credit history). The owner showed up, chatted for a few moments & then declared that “money talks.” I looked in the unit just to say I did, and then I left.

    So, rent looks like it is starting to keep pace with a mortgage. I guess that means it is time to buy….bwahahahhaaaaaaaaa. This must be part of Obama’s plan to “keep people in their houses”.

  189. bmwman91 Says:

    Oh yeah, and 12 months ago, 1BRs were $1500-$1600 in my complex.

  190. DreamT Says:

    meanwhile, refinancing underway should shave off about 20% of my monthly mortgage payment… from my perspective, rent will soon be more expensive than mortgage, *including* principal

  191. madhaus Says:

    I suppose this isn’t the time to mention that I’ll be DONE paying my mortgage in two more years. What will I do? I know! I could BORROW A WHOLE BUNCH OF MONEY ON MY HOUSE! ;)

  192. bmwman91 Says:

    madhaus, you mean you haven’t been visiting the ATM? Get with the new paradigm. Owning provides an endless pool of e

  193. bmwman91 Says:

    madhaus, you mean you haven’t been visiting the ATM? Get with the new paradigm. Owning provides an endless pool of equity! It’s all about making your money work FOR you. Savings accounts are for the elderly!

  194. SEA Says:

    “meanwhile, refinancing underway should shave off about 20% of my monthly mortgage payment… from my perspective, rent will soon be more expensive than mortgage, *including* principal ”

    I can only imagine the reduction in payment if #191 extends her duration, including principal.

  195. Real Estater Says:

    #190, 191,

    I think these examples all speak to the fact that homeowners have happy endings. Rent is cheaper than mortgage only during the first few years of the comparison. Over time, renting is more expensive than owning.

    Paying off a house means you have a lot of “dead money” locked into your house. That money can be used to buy a second house, and fund the beginning of another happy ending. Let the renter buy the house for you. When you retire, the rent check will keep on coming. It’s an investment that replenishes itself. That’s a better proposition than saving money. Generally a fixed amount of money saved will get used up at some point, if it’s not rendered worthless by inflation.

  196. madhaus Says:

    Wait, I thought we’re supposed to end up renting to each other for tax reasons.

  197. madhaus Says:

    #195, why don’t you tell that to the “owner” of today’s featured listing. Purchased for $335K, and he can’t get rid of it at $190K.

  198. Real Estater Says:

    >>#195, why don’t you tell that to the “owner” of today’s featured listing. Purchased for $335K, and he can’t get rid of it at $190K.

    There are always people who screw up their investment, just like there are people who get killed in auto accidents. It does not mean driving is bad. The value is in figuring how to do things right, while being aware of the risks.

  199. Petsmart groomer Says:

    > If you wanted to get in on the ground floor its too late.

    Lucky me then.

  200. SEA Says:

    Other than forget to buy light bulbs and Drano, what did the owner do to ‘screw up the investment?’

  201. Real Estater Says:

    >>what did the owner do to ‘screw up the investment?’

    He lost money on it, didn’t he?

  202. Sunny(vale) Kim Says:

    just like there are people who get killed in auto accidents.
    —-

    That’s called freedom to get killed while enjoying the freedom to talk on the cell phone while driving.

  203. SEA Says:

    #201- Maybe, just maybe, he should have rented?

  204. bmwman91 Says:

    You don’t need to spend half a million dollars to get a happy ending. An hour on 101 & $50 in Chinatown takes care of that. You guys are doing it wrong.

  205. madhaus Says:

    An hour on 101? You are definitely doing it wrong.

  206. bmwman91 Says:

    All part of the convenience factor, rigidly erected in the equity equation. Maybe if our favorite R.Estater would post sticky details like this more, people would be more aroused by his buying advice.

  207. DreamT Says:

    If he doesn’t delve into the sticky details, Real Estater does has an educated opinion about the meat of the matter.

  208. bmwman91 Says:

    Exactly. We can just find new ways to make people spend our way out of the mess! Forget spending cuts…just legalize gambling! I mean, casino gambling. The 2000’s weren’t a real estate casino or anything…nah that was different. Real estate is a guaranteed return & you don’t need to know much about it other than drano & light bulbs, unlike roulette & black jack where you need to study the game closely & weigh the odds & probably still lose.

  209. SEA Says:

    January 2009 RE: “I just returned from Vegas. Just look at all the magnificent hotels and world class facilities, and think about the amount money that’s keeping the place going.”

    WTF was he thinking? Did he not notice that Vegas was, and remains to be, one of the worst real estate markets in the entire United States?

  210. Richard Wicks Says:

    I read comments up until I saw this:

    “$700K is not a lot of money for Mountain View. It must be some kind of townhouse. There is no way he can find a SFH for that cheap. ”

    Just check zillow or hotpads.

    I still don’t see why people would want to buy here. Sure, it’s an OK place to live and there’s lots of jobs, but it’s so easy just to work here a few years and go into semi-retirement instead. I have no intention of staying here even though I can buy a house for cash.

  211. JuJu Says:

    Problem is, you won’t stay retired long if you move out to a shitty economy in other places. 700k is ok price to pay these days in metro areas.

  212. nomadic Says:

    That’s okay, JuJu. Richard and bob can be roommates.

  213. CNN blogger creams himself over Facebook Effect [Burbed.com] Says:

    [...] length to explain why this is happening, and mentions “The Facebook Effect” as if the term were newly minted.  Here’s what Hebron said in much fewer words.  (The charts are all linked from his [...]


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