July 16, 2013

Fixer Upper in Mountain View, $50K over asking

Yes, we love Mountain View. Not only is it Close to Google, all those highly paid Googlers can duke it out for the privilege of buying excellent properties like this one. Thanks very much to Burbed reader dollarbin for this amazing find.  Oops, gone!  Sorry, and thank you for playing!

130716-nedson-redfin2509 NEDSON Ct
Mountain View, CA 94043
$854,000

3 Beds
2 Baths
1,536 Sq. Ft.
$556 / Sq. Ft.
Built: 1954
Lot Size: 7,000 Sq. Ft.
Sold On: Jul 4, 2013
Property Type: Detached Single Family
View: Neighborhood
County: Santa Clara
Stories: 1
Community: Thompson
MLS#: 81317367

Central location. Fixer upper in Mountain View CA. 3/2 Needs some TLC. 7000 sq ft lot. Home can be lived in right now but eventually needs windows and roof work. See all reports. Private back yard, fireplace in family room. Garage conversion done years ago with permits making this a large living room for your family. Ice block tiles in master shower. Needs carpeting and paint.

Take it away, dollarbin!

130716-nedson-iceblockI don’t tour many homes these days, but this one is close and my curiosity got the best of me. Photo #8 does not do justice to the unevenness of the master bedroom floor. Don’t be fooled by the Cul-de-Sac address, the bedroom windows look right out onto busy Middlefield Rd.. This one shouldn’t stay on the market, the listing agent told me they already had an all cash offer for $800K after one day of open house, and they expected more and higher bids to come.

130716-nedson-tilefloorIt’s kind of funny, I came to burbed in 2011 so I only experienced the last bubble in archive form, but it seems like these Mountain View listings are exactly like the kind of WTF listings that we saw in Palo Alto back in the early days of burbed. There might be a few of these legacy crap-shacks in PA still, but I guess now they probably are just quietly sold as teardowns, whereas prices have finally risen in MV to tempt the truly unsell-able stock onto the market.

You keep using that word, unsellable. We do not think it means what you think it means.

Comments (13) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 7:09 am

13 Responses to “Fixer Upper in Mountain View, $50K over asking”

  1. dollarbin Says:

    I fell victim to one of the classic blunders – The most famous of which is “never get involved in a land war in Asia” – but only slightly less well-known is this: “If you don’t buy now, you’ll be priced out forever”!

  2. nomadic Says:

    Today’s blunder would be “don’t get involved in a bidding war in Mountain View.”

  3. Single Pane Lass Says:

    Thankfully, there are plenty of people who don’t think mid-century modern homes like this one should be torn down, as the bidding war for this house demonstrates. There are not a lot of unrenovated Eichlers on large lots in this price range and I’d venture to sat the buyer got a good deal. I’ve seen the house and it has lovely lines and will be a great home when it is fixed up.

    And personally, I’d prefer an original one-story Eichler that’s harmonious with its neighborhood to the post-teardown McMansion monstrosities in Palo Alto any day.

  4. peanutbutter Says:

    This has to be one of the least charming looking houses I’ve seen posted here. The interior seriously looks like something horrible from the mid-80’s: cheapy-cheap wall to wall formica-covered fiberboard. That floor looks terrible too.

    I wonder if this is yet another case where the people who sold this lived there forever, sold it, and are now jumping up and down with glee with plans to move somewhere and basically buy a small plantation.

  5. sfbubblebuyer Says:

    7,000 is a ‘large’ lot? Sheesh!

  6. madhaus Says:

    The Burbed tag “big lot” doesn’t kick in until 10,000 sf, so there.

    You’re going to LOVE tomorrow’s house.

  7. nomadic Says:

    When I first read the listing this morning, I read it as 7000 sq ft lol.

  8. dollarbin Says:

    #3: Single Pane Lass: I couldn’t agree with you more about preserving the character of Mid-Century Modern neighborhoods, but bidding wars and spiraling prices represent a threat, not a force for preservation. Full disclosure: I am an owner in Fairview, the Thompson/Monta Loma Eichler tract. This development is a bit of a transition for Eichlers. Built in 1954, it is a break with the early Anshen and Allen designs, but it predates many popular Eichler design elements like an atrium seen in later developments. Compare the houses in the Fairmeadow tract (1951-53, Palo Alto between Meadow, Charleston, Alma and Middlefield: the “Circles”) and Greenmeadow tract (1954-56, Palo Alto between Charleston, San Antonio, Alma and Middlefield) for a before and after.

    The whole tract is about 200 ~1100 sq. ft. 3 Bed/2 Bath houses. There’s a little variation in the roof and garage layout, but they’re all basically the same house on 5000 to 7000 sq. ft. lots. Overall, Eichler didn’t build too many of this house design, there’s two small areas in Palo Alto that are the same design: Sutter Ave. a cul-de-sac off Ross Rd. near Colorado and Marshall Dr. and Moreno Ave. between Louis and Ross Rd. If you want ugly McMansions, look no further. Nearly every one of these Palo Alto houses that have been sold in the last 10 years has been torn down and replaced because people who spend more than $1,000,000 won’t settle for a 3/2 or 4/2, fuck the architectural integrity of the street. For example, this house:

    http://www.redfin.com/CA/Palo-Alto/867-Marshall-Dr-94303/home/596340

    Sold in 2011 for almost double what the identical house would have fetched in Monta Loma at the time, it’s already been torn down. As an aside, this house is just a few doors from the house this girl was staying in when she wrote the article that pops up when you Google “Unhappy with Eichler”:

    http://www.sfgate.com/homeandgarden/article/UNHAPPY-WITH-EICHLER-Retro-may-be-cool-but-it-2515339.php#photo-2655086

    Now, whoever paid $850K for this house might be interested in preserving its mid-century charms, but there’s no zoning overlay preventing them from putting in some bland two-story mini-McMansion. A flipper might be able to use the house’s Eichler-ness as a selling point once they fix it up, but because it’s not a classic Eichler design why should they preserve any of the expensive touches. For a preview, check out this flip:

    Original listing ($575K):
    http://www.redfin.com/CA/Mountain-View/2400-Alvin-St-94043/home/1486798/mlsListings-81144474

    Flip Listing ($875K):
    http://www.redfin.com/CA/Mountain-View/2400-Alvin-St-94043/home/1486798

    Sure they put in lovely engineered floors and dual-paned windows, but compare photo 8 of the original with photo 4 of the flip listing. They replaced the classic Eichler floor to ceiling windows in the living room with tiny but energy efficient and cheap regular-sized windows.

  9. Single Pane Lass Says:

    Thanks for the links, Dollarbin. I guess I am assuming that this house won’t be torn down because, for whatever reason, the fixer-uppers in Monta Loma rarely are. For which I am thankful. The original article suggests that these “crapshacks” deserve to be demolished and rebuilt Palo Alto style, but I’m glad to be living in an area where that is not the norm (yet).

  10. nomadic Says:

    Dollarbin, interesting article from sfgate.com. The woman who wrote that hatchet job is an idiot. The house (as she admits readily) was not “well-maintained” (huge understatement from the look of it). Hell, I’d bet her grandmother used nothing but Drano and replaced nothing but light bulbs since she bought the place in 1968. Houses weren’t well insulated when built in the 1950s – even in actual cold climates. And there is absolutely nothing “weird” about radiant floor heating.

    I’m getting off my soapbox before I get on a roll. I’ll just repeat my original assessment; the author is an idiot.

  11. Wave Says:

    This one doesn’t seem that Burbed-worthy. The buyer got a decent deal, except I do believe it is built on top of toxic waste.

  12. Another atrocious East Bay listing when you should buy in Mountain View [Burbed.com] Says:

    [...] living room is sinking plus it has a frighteningly large kitchen? It makes much more sense to buy a fixer-upper in Mountain View instead. Think of all the time you’ll save when everything is at your fingertips because the [...]

  13. dollarbin Says:

    I think the Burbed-ness of this house is that a place needing a serious top-to-bottom remodel is selling for what a fixed up version of the same house would have fetched last year.

    Fortunately for the buyer this part of Mountain View was never an industrial site. It was an Airport in the 1930s and 1940s: http://www.lakata.org/arch/mvairfield/
    The closest Superfund Sites are across Rengstorff near 101, the CTX Printex and Spectra-Physics sites which are largely entombed beneath Gable’s End.


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