August 31, 2013

I don’t want a roommate, but an Arch-Nemesis

Why oh why can’t roommate ads in Silicon Valley be like this?  Here’s an ad that caught Burbed reader NYC Exile’s attention. Why NYCE was reading NYC Craigslist is a mystery for another day.

And we’re reprinting the whole thing because Craigslist ads are about as temporary as 2.8% mortgage rates.

$1 Seeking an Arch-Nemesis Roommate (Williamsburg)

130827-arch-vennI’m looking to fill the vacant room in my small, two-bedroom apartment in Brooklyn with a roommate who is respectful and financially sound, and can double as my arch-nemesis.

If you haven’t closed this page yet — which if you did, even though you wouldn’t be reading this, would be very arch-nemesis of you — allow me to elaborate.

My arch-nemesis roommate will provide constant combat in the apartment. After living with far too many passive folk, I can say with certainty that I AM READY for this. I’m not looking for a bad roommate, per se (i.e. someone that doesn’t clean their dishes or someone that sleeps in my bed when I’m gone), but I am looking for a roommate who is willing to regularly kick my ass, or at least attempt to, so we can create an authentic hero (me) vs. arch-nemesis (you) living arrangement.

Here are my arch-nemesis roommate requirements:

1. You keep our feud inside the apartment. I don’t want to fight you outside of the apartment, even if we leave to get groceries or cleaning supplies. Also, I’m not looking for someone that’s planning some sort of world domination. Let’s keep this between us.

130827-arch-ad2. You adhere to a standard of cleanliness. This is a big one for me. "Neat Freak" is NOT my hero name, but I am seriously a neat freak. The only time you can choose to not be neat is if it’s an initiation for battle, like you filling my room with fertilizer, in which case, get dirty. It’ll pay off.

3. You have a normal work schedule. I don’t want any freelancers or work-from-homers. I’d like you to have a standard nine-to-five. When I’m at work, you’re at work. When I’m home, you’re home. Most importantly, when I’m ready for battle, so are you.

4. You don’t bring the party home. The only time "bringing the party home" is appropriate is if it’s a party with a staged hostage situation. I will try to free the hostage; You will try to stop me. Alternatively, you could just throw a really good party and not invite me.

5. You put your arch-nemesis weaponry away when it’s not in use. This is a SMALL apartment with even smaller rooms and even smaller closets. Any weapons, tools, and/or metal suits should be kept to a minimum, and at the very least, should fit comfortably under your bed.

130827-arch-venn36. Your powers must match or exceed mine. My "powers" are never forgetting to set my alarm clock, playing a few chords on the guitar, and making a decent omelet. In addition to being able to kick my ass, you should be able to sneak into my room to turn off my alarm clock, play the major and minor guitar chords, and make eggs in other variations besides the omelet.

7. You are truly my arch-nemesis. You HAVE to be my arch-nemesis and not just a "villain." There’s a big difference. My arch-nemesis is the Darth Vader to my Luke Skywalker, the salt to my slug, the orange juice to my toothpaste. We are the same person, but at the very same time, we’re complete opposites.
8. You pay rent on time. Speaks for itself!

DISCRIMINATION WARNING: I’m NOT looking for anyone that actually thinks they are superhuman. If you think you can fly, or are just good at climbing buildings, then good for you. If you can’t do these things, you should still feel free to apply. Also, I’m totally okay with a female arch-nemesis. I’m not one of those guys who thinks females weren’t "built" to be arch-nemeses. That’s silly.

130827-arch-tshirtIf you think you are truly my arch-nemesis and meet the roommate requirements outlined above, drop me a line and I’ll tell you more about the apartment. Or, maybe I won’t and that’s where things will truly begin.

  • Location: Williamsburg
  • it’s NOT ok to contact this poster with services or other commercial interests

Posting ID: 4029623636
Posted: 2013-08-27, 4:14PM EDT
email to a friend

NYC is one of our many arch-nemesis metros (because Silicon Valley is so awesome we have to have several), so we need some better ads than this to defeat them. Please share if you can find any, and if you can’t, then write something better for a rented closet in a Campbell Crapbox.

Update: Heard back from NYC Exile, who says this ad was written by comedian Alex J. Mann.  (We’ll have you know we found the matching pictures ourselves.) That’s kind of a shame that this is professional work product. Could you imagine the roommate wars from a software engineer who needs an arch nemesis just to chill out?

Click here to post a comment -- Posted by: madhaus @ 7:09 am






August 30, 2013

Watch the hawks soar with Portola Valley potential

There are many ways for a house to show Burbed win. One is for it to be completely overpriced, and the other is for it to be an utter crapbox.  Which kind do you like better? Can’t decide? Today’s house is BOTH!

130829-westridge-redfin207 WESTRIDGE Dr
Portola Valley, CA 94028
$2,998,000

4 Beds
2.5 Baths
2,770 Sq. Ft.
$1,082 / Sq. Ft.
Built: 1952
Lot Size: 3.05 Acres
On Redfin: 5 days
Status: Active
Property Type: Detached Single Family
Stories: 2
Community: Central Portola Valley
MLS#: 81331429
Style: Contemporary
View: Green Belt, Mountains, Canyon
County: San Mateo

130829-westridge-flagstoneOver 3 acres with spectacular southern exposure, views toward Monte Bello Ridge. Watch the hawks soar! Architect designed with Frank Lloyd Wright’s "Falling Water" in mind, this mid-century contemporary is ready for extensive remodel or build new. Owned by one family since 1953. Wonderful privacy. Two guest cottages. Much deferred maintenance; 3-stall barn w/ hayloft in disrepair. Potential!


130829-westridge-poleDesigned with “Falling Water” in mind? We guess we could say our mid-century modern shack was designed with Monticello in mind… and yet it was a suburban tract house in fact.  Only ours has fewer paper cranes.

This house also reminds us of the one yesterday: way more pictures outside than in, and no bedrooms snapped at all. Wonder why not? Maybe by deferred maintenance they really mean the owners haven’t gotten out of bed since 1953.

Comments (4) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 7:02 am

August 29, 2013

Move-in, remodel or tear down and start over in Orinda

Sometimes our readers forget that we are a Northern California real estate blog, not just Silicon Valley. We realize with so little of the Real Bay Area outside Where Innovation Happens it’s easy to forget this. However, Burbed Win can be found almost anywhere. Today’s featured funhouse from Burbed reader edie takes us to the wild and uncivilized jungle of Orinda! (That’s in CoCoCo, in case you haven’t gone anywhere but Google via Google Bus in the last two years.)  But one thing this place has in common with so many other Burbed properties: Pending!

130828-linda-redfin6 LINDA Vis
Orinda, CA 94563
$499,000

2 Beds
2 Baths
1,219 Sq. Ft.
$409 / Sq. Ft.
Built: 1939
Lot Size: 0.29 Acres
On Redfin: 21 days
Status: Pending
Type: Detached
Stories: 2
Community: Country Club
MLS#: 40626723
Style: Cottage
View: Hills, Wooded
County: Contra Costa

This charming cottage is on a great oak-studded . 28 acre lot in the Orinda Country Club area. It’s an idyllic setting! The house is a 2 bedroom, 2 bathroom, 1200+ sf in two stories with a 2 car detached garage. Ready to move-in, remodel or tear down and start over.

130828-linda-kitchenHere’s why edie thought you’d want to venture out of your comfort zone and look at this place:

Check out the price history. The place went up by 200K in a year when it clearly hasn’t been touched in that time. (Unless "creepy backwoods cabin" is the new aesthetic among flippers.

Though pathetically, after going to yesterday’s open houses in the East Bay, this place doesn’t seem so bad to me. 

130828-linda-garageWe always wonder about listings where there are 3 times as many outside as inside pix, and it’s not like the outside shots are showing different parts of the grounds. We can only assume that the current owner has some secret Web 6.0 Electric Motor SuperDuperHyperUltraLoop High Speed mass transit project in those bedrooms that Cannot Be Photographed Upon Pain of Death or initialing every one of the 400 pages in the NDA.

Or, this being Orinda rather than Saratoga, it’s more likely a bunch of dead primates.

Comments (3) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 7:03 am

August 28, 2013

Resort Style Community… for Railfans and Trainspotters

Not everyone can afford to live close to Google.  For everyone else there’s real life and real budgets. That means properties like the one we’re bringing you today.  Oh wait, this property has an asking price of $850,000.

130827-dahlia-redfin1340 DAHLIA Loop
San Jose, CA 95126
$849,900

HOA Dues: $180/mo.
3 Beds
3 Baths
1,977 Sq. Ft.
$430 / Sq. Ft.
Built: 2006
Lot Size: 3,920 Sq. Ft.
On Redfin: 4 days
Status: Active
HOA Dues: $180/month
Style: Contemporary
Community: Santa Clara
MLS#: 81331315
Property Type: Detached Single Family
Stories: 3
County: Santa Clara

Stunning Single Family Home in Resort Style Encanto Community. Located walking distance from Santa Clara University and a short drive from Santana Row and San Jose International Airport. This is a unique corner lot with one of the biggest lot size in the community. Beautifully done Front/Back yard which are rare in this community. Bonus Room big enough for a pool table. Perfect for entertaining.

130827-dahlia-closeupLet’s have a real good look at this “Resort Style Encanto Community,” because streetview is not available. Obviously this is such an exclusive resort, self-driving Google robot overlord vehicles aren’t allowed in.

You may not realize it, but the photo above and the other one of the pool are not the building that is for sale.  As a Burbed exclusive, we’d like to show you just what exactly it is they’re selling.

And then we’ll pull back a bit and give you another thing the agent didn’t.

Context.

130827-dahlia-satellite

130827-dahlia-poolSee that house in the lower left corner of the plex, right next to both the railroad tracks and the kitchen & bathroom warehouse? Yup, that’s it. But hey! Front/Back yard which are rare in this community.

Wait until you find out what’s on the other side of those railroad tracks!

Bunus: Another unit is for sale in this community, which doesn’t have all the benefits such as the whopping 3800 square foot lot. What it does have is 26 photos for you to enjoy Resort Living.  And lots of trains.  Perfect for entertaining, provided the people you are entertaining are all three year old boys.

130827-dahlia-caltrainWhoo-whoooooooooo!

Comments (6) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 7:02 am

August 27, 2013

Thirteen Forty Seven: Diamond in the rough part of Old Palo Alto

Yesterday’s house didn’t seem to do it for our readers, or at least the readers who enjoy commenting about properties featured on our site. So today we’re going back to a tried but true perennial: the Palo Alto crapbox, with bunus WTF pricing.  And no, we don’t mean that the way you think we do.

Thanks very much to Burbed reader Michael Boltonestater for sending in today’s house. Oh yeah, one more thing.  PENDING!

130826-alma-movoto1347 Alma St
Palo Alto, CA 94301
$625,000

Loan Payment: $2,423/mo
Bedrooms: 2
Bathrooms: 1
Size: 848 sqft
$/sqft: $737/sqft
Type: Single Family House
Year Built: 1925
Lot Size: 1,100
Days on Movoto: 8 days
Neighborhood: Old Palo Alto
MLS#: 81329852
Status: Pending – Do Not Show

Diamond in the rough! Contractor special for a property that needs cosmetic and some possible structural intervention. Price reflects condition. Many possibilities! Don’t miss this great opportunity!

130826-alma-framingDid you say possible structural intervention? Say no more! Nothing like a real challenge to whet the appetite on a Tuesday morning, because the usual shortcomings of a busy street and Elon Musk’s Hyperloop right across from it aren’t sufficient. And if you think that would scare anyone away, think again! How many other properties on 1100 square foot lots went pending in 8 days?

We were sure than lot size was a typo until we took a look at the aerial view.

130826-alma-satellite

This is a one-story house, 848 square feet. Looks like a similarly-sized house shares the lot. 1100 could well be correct. But, seriously, is any price too high for your own quarter of a tenth of an acre in Palo Alto?

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

August 26, 2013

Nothing wrong with this Los Gatos home that price can’t fix

Oh hell, it’s Monday. But there’s good things about Mondays. Mondays mean the beginning of another week of Burbed housing win, so let’s get started. Burbed reader nomadic has a LOT of win for us today in Los Gatos.

130825-belgatos-redfin308 BELGATOS Ln
Los Gatos, CA 95032
$2,500,000

4 Beds
3.5 Baths
4,165 Sq. Ft.
$600 / Sq. Ft.
Built: 1987
Lot Size: 1.93 Acres
On Redfin: 29 days
Status: Active
Property Type: Detached Single Family
Stories: 2
Community: Los Gatos/Monte Sereno
MLS#: 81327424
Style: Tudor
View: City Lights
County: Santa Clara

Elegant Tudor Estate-4165 sqft with 3 car garage and 840 sqft detached guest house. -Gated with circular driveway and a completely fenced 1.93 acre lot-private with no neighbors yet close to town. Solar heated salt water pool and spa with pool house. Master suite with fireplace and large deck. Outdoor kitchen with barbecue, sink and fridge. Horses are permitted with trails adjacent to the property.

130825-belgatos-kitchenAdd it up: 4165 + 840 = 5005 sf. Yay! This house wins the Burbed ginormous tag by 5 square feet.  It’s also been on the market for (gasp) an entire month. Now let’s see what nomadic’s nominating statement for this property is.

Seller is a licensed RE agent.  There are only seven listing pics.  Seller has this priced just $70k above their 2006 purchase price, and I would guess it’s priced close to market value.  When the current seller bought the place, they paid $1.2M more than the previous sale price seven years earlier (the price doubled).  That previous seller was related to their agent.  Is this house now only bought & sold among realtors? There is no indication of any remodeling or building in between transactions.  This is the slums of Los Gatos – was it really in the RBA between 1999 and 2006?

130825-belgatos-poolIn summary, the price doubled in the seven years 1999-2006 and then stagnated for the seven years since. Ouch.

Don’t be silly, nomadic. The property most certainly did not stagnate. It ripened, like a fine wine, or cheese, or toe fungus. Obviously if YOU buy this property today, the price will quadruple in ten minutes, ensuring the RBA Property Doubles Every Ten Years rule we know and love.

But in order for that to happen, somebody had better buy this place before the various realtards selling it among themselves mistakenly ask so much that everyone forgets to overbid.

Comments (4) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 7:03 am

August 25, 2013

You are SO priced out forever

Haven’t bought a house yet? Here’s some cheery news proving you waited too long.

Freddie Mac: 30-year mortgage jumps to 4.58%, highest in 2 years

130824-lat-builderBy E. Scott Reckard, Los Angeles Times
August 22, 2013, 10:59 a.m.

Fixed mortgage rates jumped again this week, with Freddie Mac‘s widely watched survey saying lenders were offering 30-year home loans at an average of 4.58%.

That was up from 4.4% last week and the highest rate Freddie has reported in two years.

Freddie Mac reported Thursday that the average for the 15-year fixed loan, a popular alternative for people refinancing mortgages, was 3.6%, up from 3.44% last week and 2.89% at this time a year ago.

The higher rates have sharply reduced the number of borrowers able to refinance their home loans at lower rates, and with delinquencies and foreclosures also on the wane, big mortgage lenders are cutting back on staffing.

Ruh-roh Raggy. When the banks don’t think they need staff anymore, you know this party isn’t going to end well.  Fortunately, this article was reporting from the Southland, which is most definitely not in the Real Bay Area. Everyone knows in the RBA home prices only go up because nobody here needs a mortgage at all.

Bring a suitcase full of cash to your closing or go home.

Comments (13) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 7:08 am

August 24, 2013

Internet hasn’t obsoleted Realtards. Why not?

Perhaps they will always be with us.

Here’s why real estate agents are still around

130823-realtards-picBy Lydia DePillis, The Washington Post
POSTED:   08/23/2013 09:25:43 AM PDT

In this Tuesday April 2, 2013, photo, Christian Bell and his wife Beth Heinen Bell view a home for sale with real estate agent Becky Dickenson, left, in Grand Rapids, Mich. (Paul Sancya/AP)

The quintessentially mainstream American real-estate brokerage — Re/Max — went public Tuesday. The housing market is hot enough, its initial filing explained, that raising investor cash could launch it into markets around the country it hadn’t yet reached.

But wait — real estate agents? Wasn’t the Internet supposed to drive them out of business?

The online age has been hard on all kinds of middlemen, after all. Travel agents, for example, were rendered obsolete by Orbitz and Expedia. Soft-goods retailers were outpaced by Amazon. The effect should be similar with people who sell homes: What do they have but what they know? And what of that can’t be better figured out through unbiased, publicly available data, crunched and presented free on websites such as Zillow and Trulia?

This is a piece that asks many questions yet delivers few answers. “It’s complicated” is not really an explanation.  And what the heck is Jason’s House?  Shouldn’t he be more original and call it Jason’s List?  It’s mentioned in a Washington Post article and there’s mentions in Texas media, so it should be really helpful to all our Northern California readership.

It’s Weekend Open Thread time, too. Met any helpful real estate agents lately?

Comments (3) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 7:03 am

August 23, 2013

Serenity is just the beginning in Palo Alto

It’s Friday! That means another weekend coming up, so let’s end this block of Housing Win with something really, truly excellent. We think Burbed reader Wendie has found it. Read on and see if there’s gold in them thar flats.

130822-ramona-redfin3243 RAMONA St
Palo Alto, CA 94306
$1,679,000

3 Beds
2 Baths
1,720 Sq. Ft.
$976 / Sq. Ft.
Built: 1951
Lot Size: 6,250 Sq. Ft.
On Redfin: 14 days
Status: Active
Property Type: Detached Single Family
Stories: 2
Community: Midtown
MLS#: 81328972
Style: Mediterranean
View: Neighborhood
County: Santa Clara

Nestled on a spacious lot, this 3 bedroom 2 bath custom home filled with tons of natural light and serenity is just the beginning. In the heart of Midtown and close to all conveniences, transportation and nationally ranked schools, this home is perfect for your family now and into the future.

130822-ramona-familyWendie had something to say about the photo above,

The realtor should be ashamed of himself.  Even the first photo is full of junk on the driveway! I don’t really understand why someone trying to sell a 2M would not even THINK to get a housecleaner to remove the junk in and out of the home before he started taking photos!!!

130822-ramona-kitchenJunk on the driveway? Looks like valuable prizes to us! What could be under those tarps? Buy this house (for a little bit less than $2M) and find out!

And at least they picked up the junk off the kitchen floor. (At least from this angle.)

Let us know what treasures you can find in this listing!

Comments (6) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 7:04 am

August 22, 2013

Pavers on the Driveway in Sunnyvale!

Tired of long articles that go on and on and on and ON? You’ll love today’s post and you’ll love today’s featured home even more.  Thanks very much to Burbed reader Michael Boltonestater for these superb snapshots in Sunnyvale! And we hope you enjoy them, because the house is, you guessed it, Pending!

130821-bennington-redfin1170 BENNINGTON Dr
Sunnyvale, CA 94087
$1,150,000

6 Beds
3.5 Baths
2,246 Sq. Ft.
$512 / Sq. Ft.
Built: 1955
Lot Size: 0.31 Acres
On Redfin: 22 days
Status: Pending Without Release
Property Type: Detached Single Family
Stories: 2
Community: Sunnyvale
MLS#: 81327931
Style: Contemporary
View: Neighborhood
County: Santa Clara

Spacious Home located in Sought-After Cherry Chase Area! Kitchen features Built-In Cabinetry, 4 Burner Gas Range, Dishwasher. 3 Wood Burning Fireplaces in the Living Room, Family Room & Master Bedroom. Beautiful front yard with Gazebo. Pavers on the Driveway. Separate Cottage in the Back of the House w/ 1 Bedroom & Half Bath. Great Cherry Chase Elementary.

130821-bennington-livingWant to see those three different fireplaces in the living room? Want to see them burn wood? Sorry, all we have is one fireplace with way too much Photoshop in the way. You’re going to have to figure out where they’ve managed to stash the other two. Perhaps they’re behind those sofas.

Enjoy a couple more of these delightfully dialed-up digital pix while you consider what life would be like in this home.

130821-bennington-kitchen130821-bennington-patio

And if you want to feel the cold, hard slap of reality in your face, there’s always Google Streetview.

130821-bennington-streetview

Comments (4) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 7:02 am