August 30, 2011

Fastest Flip in the West!

Just last week, Burbed reader and frequent Guest Blogger Divasm shared with us the tale of the teenaged sleepover, complete with beer and boys, discovered while touring a house for sale.  But Big D visited the place a few weeks ago, and waited until the house sold before sharing it here.

Yesterday, the property was back on the listing service.  So I’ve asked Divasm to please give us a report on Stony Hill 2.0.  Before I do, here’s a look at Stony Hill 1.0 from last week.


Now please give D your biggest, warmest Real Bay Area welcome!

926 STONY HILL Rd, Redwood City, CA 94061


SQ. FT.: 2,130
$/SQ. FT.: $562
LOT SIZE: 7,840 Sq. Ft.
PROPERTY TYPE: Detached Single Family
STYLE: Ranch
VIEW: Bay, Neighborhood
COMMUNITY: Farm Hills Estates
COUNTY: San Mateo
MLS#: 81137487
STATUS: Active
ON REDFIN: 1 day

You will love this gorgeously updated 4/3 flexible floorplan home. Enjoy new kit w/ granite, stainless appliances inc. 36″ italian gas range. New baths, hardwood, new windows. Backyard views from deck & lush lawn. Spacious living & family rooms w/ fireplaces. Slate walkways & porch. Awesome nghbrhd & Roy Cloud school. Open House 8/29 from 5-7pm w/ wine & cheese. Virtual tour & more photos tonight.

SHspreadLadies and Gentlemen, it’s the event of the season, the wait is over…yes, that’s right, I give you the FASTEST FLIP IN THE WEST! In 29 days, we went from “pass the PBR,” to “Pardon me, would you happen to have any Grey Poupon?” Last night’s opening reception for this newly remodeled RBA home featured a spread of enough food to win over even the most cranky neighbor (probably kept up 24/7 with construction noises).

shbacklawnCouldn’t make it to the gala? Never fear, we’re here to fill you in…behold the new backyard! Every single piece of vegetation (especially the trees) appears to have disappeared, replaced by this lovely patio and lawn big enough for your child to frolic!

And don’t forget the bartender…yes, you read that correctly…to serve you celebratory champagne! 926 Stony Hill, you’ve come a long way from discarded pizza boxes in the basement, baby!


Speaking of dingy basements, it’s now split into two rooms – a game room and a guest room/family room.



And the front yard, well, I am still confused about how they appeared to actually level the street, I feel like it’s something you’d see at the Exploratorium. The house layout is much the same, as it turns out, just completely redone, refloored, repainted – to the point of being rather amazingly unrecognizable. This all courtesy of Sequoia Realty Services, which seems to consist of some grouping of these folks we see in the listing:

  • SHcrackAgent has Financial Interest
  • Seller is Licensed Real Estate Agent
  • Broker has Financial Interest

Speaking of repainted, the contractor said the foundation issues turned out to be cosmetic, by which it appears he meant “I painted over the cracks” – you might recognize the old crack, but now it’s sage colored! So much better on the eyes. But the floors upstairs are indeed level, so perhaps the issues weren’t such a big deal. Go ahead and plunk down your $1.2 mil and find out. If you serve PBR at your housewarming party we can make it the Burbed event of this Fall!

Comments (23) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 5:16 am

23 Responses to “Fastest Flip in the West!”

  1. sfbubblebuyer Says:

    I went there too! I was the dude with baby and iPhone snapping photos. Pretty much the same photos as got posted here. Note the caution tape on the stairs! What wasn’t superficial was the cracking on the retaining wall under the deck. It was barely spread, but it went from the top of the wall to the bottom, splitting the cinder-blocks all the way down.

    The lovely new tiling on the front steps was slapped on so fast it would make your head spin. If you looked at the bottom step from the side where they couldn’t be bothered to remove the railing while tiling, you’ll see big gaps in the mortar under the edge tiles. They’ll be popped off in less than a year.

    The newly painted ceiling had cracks already reappearing in it. Apparently the 29 days didn’t allow them enough time to properly tape and spackle the settlement lines.

    I examined the lovely painted crack. It did look cosmetic rather than structural, but I would have slapped a patch on there while I was busy pouring some stamped concrete so I didn’t have to spring for real flagstone.

    Speaking of flagstone, if you look at the picture of the front of the house very carefully, you’ll see a little flagstone path around to the right of the house to the back yard. Whatever you do, do not assume that means you’re supposed to WALK on it. The flagstones were dropped RIGHT ON TOP OF THE SOD. They weren’t cut into the sod, let alone prepped with a gravel and sand bed. They were tippier than the Titanic post-iceberg humping. You could lift them up and see the smooshed grass underneath.

    Speaking of underneath, if you look underneath the thin granite slabs in the kitchen, you’ll find lovely veneer cabinets. Yes, a thin sliver of hardwood over your particleboard counters will keep you happily smiling until the first water spill gets into the substructure and turns the cabinet to mush. Fortunately, you never see spilled water in a kitchen!

    Yes, no expense was NOT spared in this lipstick laden pig decoration. It sure looks nice, and you’ll have lovely pictures to show the contractor in 5 years when it’s time to repair the place correctly.

  2. sfbubblebuyer Says:

    Oooh, I forgot to mention the best part! The best part being the stackable retaining wall with loose units in it that upon removing said unit to look at it appears to have been done with NO drainage rock, let alone an actual drain, behind it. And to make a nice flat planting area, they excavated right up to the chain link fence. And I mean RIGHT up to it. If you squint at the back yard photo, you can see the concrete piers to hold up the fence completely exposed and undercut to make the lovely backyard and planter. The fence is now on a vertical drop-off of about 1.5-2 feet. One or two good rains and you’ll have that thing sliding into your new planter box, along with part of the hillside.

  3. nomadic Says:

    Thanks for the reports, Divasm and sfbb!

    The bartender looks like he’s waiting to be cuffed in the pic. (Put your hands on the wall and spread ’em!)

  4. SEA Says:

    This one might be fun to guess when and for how much it will sell.

  5. madhaus Says:

    Not impressed.

    Virtual tour is up now.

  6. ES Says:

    Anyone who buys this home deserves to have it crumble underneath them.

    Without even going through the analysis you did SFBB, my BS detector would be blaring full blast with the wine and cheese event going on. You know the last place someone offered me a drink while buying something? Diamonds. The most intrinsically worthless commodity on the face of the earth… value propped up by one cartel that hoards inventory to keep prices high. Wait… sounds familiar…

  7. nomadic Says:

    Worthless? There are a lot of industrial uses for diamonds! 😉

  8. sfbubblebuyer Says:

    Oh, and the sandwiches had WAY too much mayonnaise on them.

  9. Divasm Says:

    I would have been the one that was 8 months pregnant carrying a toddler, so my hubby did the recon on this one on the way home. 🙂

    sfbubble, you bring up some good info. The first time we toured, there was a room off the basement that was basically storage under the house, and it was walled with brick that was clearly tilting, explaining the sloping upstairs. My husband couldn’t even find the wall this time so they closed it off (hopefully after shoring it up?). It was so dark in there we didn’t get photos the first time unfortunately.

  10. sfbubblebuyer Says:

    Divasm, where was the sloping upstairs? I walked to the corners I could get to in order to suss it out, but couldn’t find any. I assumed it would be the master bedroom by the bathroom since that’s over the crack in the foundation.

    Having stabilized and repaired a foundation on the house we bought, it wasn’t as terrible as I thought it would be given that it wasn’t an ongoing slope control issue. Settlement cracks are usually pretty stable, and you can reinforce the spot, jack the house back to plumb, and ‘shim’ it with the biggest darn shims you’ve ever seen, the rebolt it to the foundation. We did that with one corner of our house when we bought it and it ran about 6k. I did the follow up painting/etc to cut down on the prices, but it did jam the window shut. It was a single pane we were replacing, so we didn’t care, but it was definitely an experience! Minor cracks that occured with the corner sank were patched and strapped together (to prevent shifting in the future) and declared acceptable.

    That being said, it took us more than 29 days to do our projects, and we didn’t do anything NEARLY as extensive. Also, we did them right. (Or at least a very close approximation.) This flip has turdburger written all over it.

  11. Divasm Says:

    The sloping that we experienced the first time (not this time, despite the wine) was in the entryway, which would have been over the wall in the basement, as well as some in the dining room. We didn’t get a good look at the bedrooms due to the aforementioned slumber party.

  12. CB Says:

    You guys crack me up. Should you register this new real estate activism campaign on Twitter? “RE-Anonymous”?

  13. SEA Says:

    Flash mob the wine and cheese, maybe?

  14. Sam_Adu Says:

    Awesome posts sfbubblebuyer!

    Here’s my completely unrelated contribution for the day: Yesterday there was the awesome house that had its price reduced again and again and again.

    How about this house that has gone pending again and again and again and again and again and again and again and again and again (Yes, that’s 9 times pending!!!!!!!) since it was first listed for sale in 2009.

    All-in-all a pretty unremarkable home although the garage conversion looks pretty hideous from the outside of the house and is darn annoying from a utility/usability standpoint.

    I love this part of the listing: “Don’t let the days on market keep you from seeing this home!”. The person responsible for setting the price of this home should be interned in an insane asylum since it has been their crazy pricing strategy that is responsible for this home being on the market since 2009.

    What sort of spooky skeletons are hiding in this property to cause it to fall through pending 9 times? Or maybe the pendings are some sort of anomaly in the way the property history is being displayed?

    Anyone care to guess how many more times this property goes pending before it gets sold? My completely wild-ass guess is 11.

    Madhaus: I just tapped on a few links on the side of the page. I propose that you buy one of these ‘burbed featured homes with all the dough you are raking in from this website!

  15. nomadic Says:

    Sam, did you notice it’s a short sale? The bank is messing around with the owners to get them to keep making payments. 28 more years and the note should be paid off!

    I’d also like to nominate Agent Nunwa for the Captain Obvious award.

  16. madhaus Says:

    Sam Adu, great writeup, I will definitely use it. But I think the readers will enjoy your work more when it appears fresh with appropriate pictures, if you’d like to submit them via email next time. Entirely up to you.

    Were you clicking ads? I don’t know how much money you’re generating for the site by clicking blog links. I did add a whole new category of bad listing photos for everyone’s viewing pleasure.

    The best way to keep Burbed healthy is to help pay the bills; get more people to read it. Maybe we should pick on some more agents so they’ll complain about us on their own blogs 😀

    Burbed is also happy to take donations to keep the site running. I don’t have anything to do with that, by the way, the Original Burbed still handles money, ads, etc. I can tell you that readership appears to be down and most bubble sites have gone away. I’m happy to keep this place afloat as long as you enjoy it.

    But Mr. Spock is, shall we say, not impressed.

  17. DreamT Says:

    he’s spooked?

  18. Sam_Adu Says:

    I like your thinking Nomadic.

    Madhaus: Roger that re: the email submissions.

  19. DreamT Says:

    “Roger that”
    Just when we started accepting that you mightn’t be Real Estater after all…! 🙂

  20. Jus7tme Says:

    Very enjoyable readings this post and comments. You guys are like a real estate consumer SWAT team, or is it REIC wrecking crew.

    And I like the flash mob idea, too. Nothing like a mob of insightful and inquisitive bubblebuyers to deconstruct the bad deals.

    Proposal for 2nd tag line after 1st tag line “Buy now or be price out for ever!” could simply be “There goes the neighborhood!”.

    This would make a great movie comedy.

  21. Frank Rizzo Says:

    2286 Riordan is scheduled to be auctioned on the courthouse steps September 12.

  22. bmwman91 Says:

    This is the most entertaining posting I’ve seen in a while (although the Atherton one with the morbid theme was pretty good too). I sort of want to get in on the Burbed-crew open house touring action. We should schedule a flash mob on one of these properties when they have an open house scheduled.

    There are some new atrocities going up in the San Jose/Cambrian area that I am working on documenting for Burbed. Maybe when they finish the first couple & open them up to prospective suckers, err buyers, we could check them out.

  23. Drive a little, save a lot.. on coffee! [] Says:

    […] The fastest flip in the West has competition! Or else the realtor’s head exploded and no one has bothered to remove the listing. Either way, you win at 345 W 8th St in Gilroy! Drive a little, save a lot! Tags: $200k-$300k, ALL CAPS, big lot, duplex, flip, foreclosure, Gilroy, listing copy, multiple units, needs work, no interior, photos, realtors, repeated photos, tenant Comments (25) — Posted by: sonarrat @ 5:19 am […]

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