August 12, 2013

UPDATED: Real Estate Portal Roulette in Mountain View, featuring large bedrooms

Updated 12:30 pm: Added listing screenshots, copy and more writeup from the other 3 non-Redfin portals.  All after the (added) break.  Enjoy.

One of the fun things about running a real estate blog is seeing how differently each of the major realty portals handles the exact same listing. We’ve had several examples of a house switching to Pending/Do Not Show status (usually about ten seconds after it’s listed), and then Redfin will disavow all knowledge of the property ever having been for sale. Zillow will usually lose the photos but manage to hold onto the listing copy. Trulia might do the same as Zillow – or the opposite. And there’s always Movoto, the place to go if you want to see the photos every other site took down.

Today’s prime property, sent in by Burbed reader LomaLuvr, shows the differences in action.  First, we’ll check in with our default site of Redfin.

130811-sanpierre-redfin935 SAN PIERRE Way
Mountain View, CA 94043
Sold for $840,000

4 Beds
2 Baths
1,576 Sq. Ft.
$533 / Sq. Ft.
Built: 1964 Lot
Size: 6,000 Sq. Ft.
Sold On: Aug 6, 2010
Status: Sold
Property Type: Detached Single Family
Stories: 1
Community: North Shoreline
MLS#: 81031181
Style: Ranch
View: Neighborhood
County: Santa Clara

Beautifully updated & ready to move right in! Open floor plan with hardwood floors in the LR, hall & bedrooms, granite slab countertops in kitchen & baths, dual pane windows, stucco outside. Formal living room, eat in kitchen & separate family room. Great location, close to major companies, walking trails, schools & downtown. Easy access for commuters, close to Cal-Train/Light-rail & the freeways.

We immediately knew something was wrong, because LL asked about “large bedrooms” (in the listing copy). That didn’t any make sense because there’s nothing in this copy about them.  Do these bedrooms look large?  Here are some listing photos, in actual size.


Only one of the listing photos even was of a bedroom.  Much more on what we found on the other portals, after the break.

Heading over to Zillow, we find some different listing copy, but no photos at all.

130811-sanpierre-zillow935 San Pierre Way
Mountain View, CA 94043
Not for Sale

Rent Zestimate:$3,155/mo
Est. Refi Payment $3808/mo
Bedrooms:4 beds
Bathrooms:2 baths
Single Family:1,576 sq ft
Lot:5,999 sqft
Year Built:1964
Last Sold:Aug 2010 for $840,000
Cooling Unknown
Parking Unknown
Basement Type Unknown
Fireplace Unknown
Floor Covering Unknown
Attic Unknown

Inviting and spacious Mountain Shadows beauty.Eat-in kitchen with stainless steel appliances and granite counters. 4 Lrg BR incl master suite,remodeled baths. Dual pane windows,newer roof. Oversized 2-car garage. Living rm, sunken family rm w. fireplace leads out to fenced yd w. designer pavers perfect for BBQ.Best MV location near Shoreline,major employers,Stevenson Park,shops, schools,downtown.

So many unknowns, and, ah, the supposed large bedrooms LL mentioned in the nomination email. We also learned they think this house is worth $975,156 and that Redfin’s showing us a previous sale.

We didn’t find the photos or copy on Trulia, either, but we got a streetview image. 

130811-sanpierre-trulia935 San Pierre Way
Mountain View, CA 94043
(Rex Manor)

4 bed, 2 bath 1,576 sqft Single-Family Home — Public Record
$1,024,000 Trulia Estimate

Official property, sales, and tax information from county (public) records as of 09/2012:

Single Family Residential
1,576 sqft
Stories: 1 story
Parking Spaces: 2
4 Bedrooms
Lot Size: 6,000 sqft
7 Rooms
County: Santa Clara
2 Bathrooms
Built In 1964
Parking: Garage
1 Building
Tax Rate Code Area: 5-010

935 San Pierre Way This Single-Family Home located at 935 San Pierre Way, Mountain View CA sold on Aug 6, 2010. 935 San Pierre Way has 4 beds, 2 baths, and approximately 1,576 square feet. The property has a lot size of 6,000 sqft and was built in 1964. The average listing price for similar homes for sale is $867,340 and the average sales price for similar recently sold homes is $844,103. 935 San Pierre Way is in the Rex Manor neighborhood in Mountain View, CA. The average price per square foot for homes for sale in Rex Manor is $624.

Wait, Rex Manor? Mountain Shadows? Redfin says this house is in North Shoreline. Zillow didn’t have an opinion. Where do you think it is?

Moving on, we then struck gold on Movoto. Photos, listing copy, everything, even proof of the troublesome Pending – Do Not Show status.

130811-sanpierre-movoto935 San Pierre Way
Mountain View, CA 94043
Price: $989,000

Loan Payment:$3,721/mo
Size: 1,576 sqft
Type:Single Family House
Year Built:1964
Lot Size:6,000
Days on Movoto:7 days
Neighborhood:North Shoreline
Status:Pending – Do Not Show

We’ll leave out the listing copy you already saw on Zillow, because what you want to see is… the large bedrooms! (these photos are large at least, click any of them for proof)  LomaLuvr wants to know if anyone thinks these bedrooms look large.


We now have the listing that you too could have bid on, but you hesitated!  Redfin not only yanked it, they went back to the last one from 2010, and we were fooled by that bargain sale price of $840,000. But rest assured that we’ll stop at nothing, checking ten different real estate sites if we have to, in bringing you the photos the agents don’t want you see and the copy they regret ever writing.

What do you think this house will end up being overbid for?

Comments (7) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 7:06 am

7 Responses to “UPDATED: Real Estate Portal Roulette in Mountain View, featuring large bedrooms”

  1. waiting_for_the_fall Says:

    I feel sad for the family that overpays for this house. All that money that could have gone toward other things is now going to be stuck in a monthly payment for many, many years. Or at least until this bubble pops and the people decide to squat for years free of payment.
    Maybe that is why people are diving in at these high prices? They know if things go south, they will just squat and get free rent for years.
    Seems like society is encouraging deadbeat behavior by allowing squatters. People are rewarded for taking huge debt and bailing on it. When will it ever end?

  2. nomadic Says:

    wftf, do you know how many of these sell for all cash? It’s staggering. Frankly, I still can’t quite get my head around it.

  3. peanutbutter Says:

    The different pastel paint colors chosen for the rooms here makes it look like the easter bunny came and paid a visit.

  4. waiting_for_the_fall Says:

    #2- Maybe the same percentage of all cash buyers now was the same as when Japan was buying up real estate in the 80’s.

  5. SEA Says:

    Overpay for a house?

  6. nomadic Says:

    #4, you may be interested in this story:

    I’ll also echo his assertions regarding Japanese stock valuations. A sick obsession in the US with (short term) stock price over all other business goals contributes to our growth issues here.

    Backing up to your comment, I’m not sure of your point regarding cash buyers. Unlike your first comment, those buyers do not default and do not become squatters. Further, did you see many squatters in the RBA five years ago when the world was reeling? No? So why are you still waiting for it to happen? They’re still squatting and the banks are hiding the inventory? Is it because you believe those doomsday ads posted on the internet saying to sell your stocks and buy gold? The recovery of the past few years is an aberration and won’t last?

  7. jack Says:

    SOLD FOR $1,090,000 ON 9/10/2013

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