December 11, 2013

Mountain View move-in!

Enough with the catty comments about no posts in two weeks. We’ll post when and if we feel like it, no matter what websites are on your toolbar. Today’s heralded homestead is from z2amiller and this is a hot, hot property! Why? Because it’s CLOSE TO GOOGLE!

131210-spring-redfin1639 SPRING St
Mountain View, CA 94043
$500,000

— Beds
— Baths
— Sq. Ft.
Built: —
Lot Size: 5,300 Sq. Ft.
On Redfin: 6 days
Status: Active
Property Type: Residential Land (Single Family)
Community: North Shoreline
MLS#: 81342322

Lot still has foundation left from house burn down Jan. 2013. Nice neighborhood close to HWY 101

The Streetview photos show the property before house burn down Jan. 2013 (but really, it’s a nice neighborhood close to HWY 101!)  Fortunately, z2a thinks bigger than that.

IMG_20131206-spring-fire2Okay so now I feel bad.  I went to take pictures of this place and there’s basically a person squatting here with possessions scattered around and it looks like they are taking shelter under a tarp tied up in a tree.

I am guessing it is the property owner, with as much stuff as there is the property, MV police would’ve kicked them out if they didn’t belong.  (I think?!)   Also based on the MV voice article the lady who lived there was a hoarder, so given the state of the property (all of the garbage bags and random stuff all over) maybe it is the same person.

IMG_20131206-spring-fire1You can see the back of the person’s head (DHO?) in one of the pictures, hanging out under the tarp.

Anyway I’m having a hard time being too snarky about it now.  :-/

I guess the neighbors will be pretty thrilled when the place sells.

And that could be you, Mr. or Ms. Burbed reader, all three of you. You could put up a six-story apartment house and become rich beyond measure renting out cubicles to Googlers who will only come home to sleep.

Comments (9) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 7:07 am






November 20, 2013

Location, location, location in Mountain View!

Here’s a fine find sent in by Burbed reader Melanie in San Jose.  Thanks very much for ensuring that this week had something worth overbidding on!

131120-alice-redfin495 ALICE Ave
Mountain View, CA 94041
$949,000

4 Beds
2.5 Baths
2,494 Sq. Ft.
$381 / Sq. Ft.
Built: 1945
Lot Size: 6,250 Sq. Ft.
On Redfin: 45 days
Status: Active
Property Type: Detached Single Family
Stories: 2
Community: Sylvan Dale
MLS#: 81336831
Style: Contemporary
View: Neighborhood
County: Santa Clara

This contemporary style home offers a blend of traditional style and modern convenience. Located in the quiet, Family oriented neighborhood of Mountain view, This home was rebuild and updated in 2002 with your family in mind. The private backyard is designed for Family fun. with 2494sf home with 4 bedrooms, 2.5 baths, 2 car garage, very close to Mountain view down town and easy access to freeways.

131120-alice-yardUpcoming Open Houses

Saturday, Nov 23: Open House – 1:00-4:00 pm

Look at that!  Buy this house and you can talk about your upcoming move over Thanksgiving dinner next week!  Now let’s check in with Melanie:

Easy access to freeways! A Mountain View bargain @ $949K

Easy access, you say?

131120-alice-aerial

Comments (16) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 11:45 am

November 15, 2013

Short ‘n Simple in San Jose

Thanks very much to Burbed reader Swan for ensuring we had some content today.

131114-crestview-redfin738 CRESTVIEW Dr
San Jose, CA 95117
$785,000

3 Beds
2 Baths
1,481 Sq. Ft.
$530 / Sq. Ft.
Built: 1954
Lot Size: 6,660 Sq. Ft.
On Redfin: 2 days
Status: Active
Property Type: Detached Single Family
Stories: 1
County: Santa Clara
Style: Traditional
Community: Santa Clara
MLS#: 81340890

There are no remarks available.

Yeah, we’ve been having a month like that.  Now let’s check in with Swan:

Once you see the realtard’s photography skills and the homeowner’s interior decorating skills, you’ll understand why, "There are no remarks available."

131114-crestview-shutters131114-crestview-tv131114-crestview-kitchen131114-crestview-dining

Click a pic to embiggen.

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

October 19, 2013

San Francisco & San Jose: Two Different Metros. WTFF? WHY?

131014-sfsj-bayareaThe conventional definition of the Bay Area was always the nine counties that touched SF Bay somewhere.  These were:

  • San Francisco, which everyone used to acknowledge as The City, because it was a City and a County both!
  • Alameda, its close-by yet cheaper urban commuter residence, home to Oakland, Berkeley, and of course, Hayward.
  • Contra Costa, further away, and featuring the lovely features of Richmond contrasted with the excitement of the I-680 corridor.
  • San Mateo, the nicer bedroom county. Not as nice as Marin, but easier to get to, and more importantly now, waaaaay closer to Google.
  • Santa Clara, formerly the valley of fruits and nuts, now home to the real economic engines. As in Google and Apple and Facebook and Intel and Cisco and a bunch of other places that make it possible for you to read this blog every day.
  • Marin, home to aging hippies and even more aging real estate, it’s the whitest part of the Bay Area
  • Sonoma, rural and removed from, well, everything above.
  • Napa, even more rural and removed except when the tourists clog up the wineries.
  • Solano, our very own Stockton on the Bay. That’s a reference to their finances, not their cattle ranching. Vallejo has a different economy.

Yet The Bay Area is often missing from lists comparing different parts of the country because the Census Bureau (now in shutdown mode!) decided to break The Bay Area into two different metropolitan areas.  There’s the San Francisco Metropolitan Statistical Area, and there’s the San Jose one.  San Francisco also got Alameda, Contra Costa, San Mateo and Marin counties. 

What did San Jose get?  San fucking Benito.  Thanks a LOT, Census anal-retentives.  You take the fifth largest metro area in the country and bust us into number 11. And number 34. Thanks a fucking lot, people counting geeks.  We really appreciate all the respect for our geographic integrity.

131014-sfsj-commuter-map

Breaking SF and SJ into different metros is utterly stupid. Also, SF gets San Mateo AND Alameda Counties, which have plenty of commuters crossing into Santa Clara County.

I finally found some actual commuting numbers in this chart here.  72 thousand San Mateo County residents commute to SF and 61 thousand commute to Santa Clara County.  But… this was in 2010. Lots more people even in SF taking the Google Bus now.  (SF-to-SCC commuters was 18K, the reverse was 7K)

You know what else is stupid? This graph. The size of the arrows seems to have little to do with how many commuters they represent when compared to the same size arrow in another county.  That big-assed snot-green one coming out of Contra Costa to Alameda?  It actually is the biggest inter-county commute, with 120 thousand people crossing the line to get to work. But the two opposed arrows out of San Mateo County, going to SF and Santa Clara County?  The baby shit brown one is longer but the purple one represents 10,000 more people.  Similarly, the same two colors coming out of Alameda?  That fabulous purple arrow is longer and just as wide, but there’s 6,000 more people heading to Silicon Valley than The City.

The chart key says arrow width is what matters, not length. But that’s bad design.  A stubby arrow connotes direction but also represents area.  A longer arrow should either show a longer commute or also more commuters.  And both SF vs SJ (well, SCC) arrows are not equilinear, yet the danged chart doesn’t tell us why that is.

131014-sfsj-commuteThere are more jobs in SCC than any other county in the Bay Area, too, 953K.  The next biggest job center is Alameda County with 737K, and The So-Called City is third with 621K.

Feel free to talk about your commute, where your job is in relation to your house, or anything you want. It’s not like we’ve ever removed a post for being off-topic.

Comments (18) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 7:01 am

October 14, 2013

We’re #1! We’re #1! We’re… PRICED OUT FOREVER!

Yesterday we shared a San Jose Mercury News (motto: Website now as thin as our newspaper!) piece showing many first-time buyers are going to remain full-time renters for the time being.  And that’s true even if we spot them places like Hayward and Mountain House.

That’s distressing news if you hate your blood-sucking landlord (but we repeat ourselves), your noisy neighbors, or your shiftless property “manager.”  Let’s balance that cup of cold crappy colloquy with some news that will turn your frown upside down.

Where Can the Middle Class Buy a Home?

131013-sf-least-affordable-ggbBy CONOR DOUGHERTY, The Wall Street Journal

If you’re in the middle class and want to buy a home here’s a piece of advice: Move to Ohio (if you’re not already there).

Some 86% of homes in the Akron, Ohio area are within reach of middle-class buyers in the area, the highest share in the nation, according to a report from Trulia, the real estate listings site. The next two cities on the list, with 85% of homes affordable to middle class, are Dayton and Toledo, respectively.

For those of you in the coastal elite who are reading this post for the perverse pleasure of finding out just how unaffordable your city is, you might be surprised to hear that New York isn’t No. 1. San Francisco is the least affordable place to be a middle-class buyer, with only 14% of homes within reach of those making the median San Francisco household income of $78,840, according to Trulia.*

However, we were slightly surprised by the next two most unaffordable places, Orange County and Los Angeles, respectively. New York was the fourth least affordable place to be middle class. After that were San Diego and San Jose and Ventura County.

Sooooo, SF is #1 but Silicon Valley is #6? But note, California completely PWN3D New York and the entire East Coast in the unaffordability sweeps. Washington DC? Shut out by the shutdown. Later, you imperialist running dogs no longer feeding at the public trough for the next few days!  When it comes to places nobody can afford to live in, we can revel in our Specialness!

131013-sf-least-listThe Trulia link above (yes, of course it works) says that while San Francisco has a 60% higher median income than most-affordable Akron, Ohio, homes there sell for (deep breath, now) seven times as much.  Only 14% of homes for sale are affordable to a household earning median income for the area.  Even worse, whoops, we mean better, San Francisco has dropped ten more percentage points in affordability since last October when 24% of homes could be purchased by a median income household.

To get slightly wonky, the real formula was what percent of homes’ monthly payments were 31% or less of the median household income, which shows the problem right there.  Everyone knows if you want to buy a house in SF, Cash is King. Monthly payment? Might as well ask if they’ll sell you the house for a hogshead of buggy whips.

San Jose’s affordability index per Trulia was 31%, but then again, none of the contenders were anywhere close to SF.  Second-place Orange County came in with only 23% of homes rated affordable by the “middle class.”

Trulia also provided a “maximum affordable home price” for each area.  Let’s take a look at what you get for that price.  Here’s a 5 BR/3 BA in SF at only $10K less than the maximum affordable amount. Of course this house is in Bayview and it has some permit issues, but you can’t have everything.

131013-sf-least-newhall

Contrast to how far your dollar S-T-R-E-T-C-H-E-S in San Jose!

131013-sf-least-waverly

Wow, a gated estate with lots of CAPITAL LETTERS and it’s yours AS IS, which means the seller won’t switch houses on you!  And just for giggles, let’s see what an “affordable” house in Akron (highest affordable house: $226K) looks like.

131013-sf-least-akron

OMG look at that house! Those bricks are going down into a big ol’ pile as soon as The Big One hits! Not only that, it would take at least a couple more hours to get to Google from here than the other two houses we showed you.  And when you look out in the boonies like this, notice what you don’t get: a decent fence around the place to keep the nosy neighbors away.

We won’t even get into the difficulty of transferring into Cupertino schools.

Comments (8) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 7:08 am

October 8, 2013

Seller Prefers No Photo in Willow Glen

A great listing should be chock-full of photos to make you drop everything you’re doing and run over to your agent to say I MUST HAVE THIS HOUSE THIS INSTANT.  A so-so listing will have at least a couple of photos that intrigue you enough to see yourself possibly moving in.  And then there’s today’s listing.

Yes, we know there was no listing yesterday.  Unless all three of our readers decide to send in voluntary donations to keep us motivated, there sure are times we just don’t feel like writing. You want fresh content each morning? Then go ahead and MAKE MY DAY.

Ahem. Anyway, on to today’s featured property!

131007-william-redfin572 W WILLIAM St
San Jose, CA 95125
$299,999

3 Beds
1 Baths
1,204 Sq. Ft.
$249 / Sq. Ft.
Built: 1905
Lot Size: 6,000 Sq. Ft.
On Redfin: 122 days
Status: Active
Property Type: Detached Single Family
Community: Willow Glen
MLS#: 81320113
Stories: 1
County: Santa Clara

Great fixer upper in Willow Glen. 3 Bedrooms 1 bath, shopping and schools nearby. Large kitchen with cute built-ins. High ceiling adds space.

Why would the seller prefer no photo when their agent could give us this one?

131007-william-streetview

Or an even better shot, like the LOCATION, LOCATION, LOCATION! This place is close to EVERYTHING!  Like extra added emissions!

131007-william-aerial

And we’re sure you can find even more amazing benefits to this property that the agent neglected to share! Have at it!

Comments (14) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 7:05 am

October 3, 2013

“Work done with permits” with the most lucky price ever!

1350 PEGGY Ave
Campbell, CA 95008

20131002a

First, let’s take a moment to observe that this house has the luckiest price ever. Whoever buys this house will be showered with years of good fortune and good SAT scores. There is no doubt.

Next, let’s just look at all the benefits this house has to offer! Long time readers of this blog know that permits are often just ignored. After all, this is the most disruptive place in the world – Silicon Valley doesn’t need stinkin’ permits. Ask for forgiveness, not permission! So the fact that this house has work done with permits – that’s definitely a unique feature.

But most importantly, once you plunk down this $888,888, you will have enormous flexibility to spend the rest of the $1M you have sitting around to grow this house. Just think of all the possibilities! After all, there’s a 200 amp panel and so much flat land. Will you be building the ultimate brogramming cave? A massive Singapore Math™ study zone?

Let’s hear your best ideas!

Comments (4) -- Posted by: burbed @ 5:04 am

October 2, 2013

Investment opportunity! Tenants willing to rent back.

10200 TORRANCE Ave
San Jose, CA 95127
$399,000

20130930a

It’s Silicon Valley! Who doesn’t like an investment opportunity!

So, if this has been renting for $1,800 per month for more than 4 years, doesn’t that mean that this is underpriced? As the new landlord, would you immediately double the rent to the market value of $3,600? After all, the rent was based on the price before the remodel! That seems awfully low.

What’s your pricing strategy for this?

And let’s not forget this large lot in the back!

image

It’s so… triangular! That just means you can build an incredibly unique, and therefore, incredibly expensive (because it’s rare!) house in the back as well! You could market this as the Triangle House – TriHo for short!

Comments (2) -- Posted by: burbed @ 5:48 am

October 1, 2013

6 SINGLE HOME OR APARTMENT UNIT OR CHURCH OR TEMPLE OR COMMERCIAL

898 TULLY Rd
San Jose, CA 95111

20130930

As we all know, one of the most important things you can have in life is options. Unlimited options = freedom, and freedom is the bedrock of our nation.

This plot of land has many options… almost unlimited options! Thus, this plot of land is freedom.

What would you build on it if you owned this? A church? A temple? A single apartment unit?

Please answer soon. HURRY UP!

Speaking of hurrying up, it’s interesting that this house has been on the market for 270 days. Where have I seen this before?

http://www.burbed.com/2012/08/14/instagram-makes-anything-better-right/

August 14, 2012

Instagram makes anything better right?

898 TULLY Rd
San Jose, CA 95111
$1,300,000

20120812898

Maybe the realtor should switch to Vine! Then this house would really hurry up!

Comments (5) -- Posted by: burbed @ 5:24 am

September 30, 2013

Buying A Home Still Beats Renting By 35% In America’s Biggest Cities

Buying A Home Still Beats Renting By 35% In America’s Biggest Cities

Despite rising home prices and mortgage rates, it’s still cheaper to buy a home than to rent one in America’s largest cities. A new report from San Francisco, Calif.-based real estate site Trulia finds that, nationally, it’s 35% less expensive to own a home. Even in notoriously pricey, renter-heavy cities like San Francisco and New York, it remains 9% and 21% cheaper, respectively.

Of the top 10, eight are located in Calif., a state in which many cities, despite being plagued by high unemployment and the foreclosure crisis, never saw prices fall enough to fully align with other local economic fundamentals like median income.

The metro area that will swing back toward renting first is San Jose, Calif., when mortgage rates climb to 5.2%. It’s currently 4% cheaper to buy than rent in the Silicon Valley hub, a dramatic change from last year when it was 31% cheaper.

This really proves what we’ve all known: buying is cheaper than renting. It’s always a good time to buy.

I’m not sure what you’re doing this Monday morning, but if you’re not buying a home, you’re probably starting off this week in the wrong way.

What does your calculations show? Is buying cheaper than renting?

Comments (8) -- Posted by: burbed @ 5:42 am