December 17, 2011

BLACK FRIDAY DEALS: Cheapest house in Downtown SJ!

DEALS DEALS DEALS just keep on coming!  And if you’re interested in downtown San Jose, you’re very busy so we’ll keep this quick.  Now, you may be asking yourself, how can this be the cheapest house downtown when the cheapest house in the entire county cost (gasp!) a hundred dollars more?

Well, that’s simple.  There are actually several houses listed for around this price, and the official cheapest house was one of the few that wasn’t pending.  But look, you read Burbed.  You know how the real estate business means real funny business.  You know a “pending” on a short sale means the seller is doing everything possible to jinx it, and a pending with release on a short sale means the buyer isn’t exactly trying their hardest either.  So this listing is like an irresistible force meeting an immovable object, or maybe the opposite; say a buyer with better places to invest making an offer to a seller who doesn’t want to go anywhere and won’t see a dime from the transaction.

That means all you have to do is threaten bribe heartily encourage everyone involved: seller, buyer, listing agent, buyers’ agent, bank agent, and of course, your agent to sell you this property!

560 E JULIAN St, San Jose, CA 95112


SQ. FT.: 1,188
$/SQ. FT.: $126
LOT SIZE: 1,242 Sq. Ft.
PROPERTY TYPE: Detached Single Family
STYLE: Victorian
VIEW: Neighborhood
COMMUNITY: Central San Jose
COUNTY: Santa Clara
MLS#: 80840481
STATUS: Pending With Release
ON REDFIN: 1154 days

Back on the market! No fault on property! Beautiful Victorian Home waiting for you.

imageYup, if you’re wondering how they got a 1,188 square foot house on a 1,242 square foot lot, that’s no fault on property.  If you’re wondering why it’s been listed 1154 days, that’s no fault on property, either. Maybe agent means no tennis matches have been played here.

Also I don’t know what’s on the counter next to the sink, but I think it qualifies for the Good Housekeeping Seal of Approval.  Or at least the Burbed good housekeeping tag.


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

November 29, 2011


Today’s house is a Guest Post by Burbed Reader AstroWallaby!  You know how good things come in small packages?  Well today’s featured listing is only 714 square feet, so it has to be fan-fracking-tastic!  Plus a location, location, location to love, love, love!

Please give AstroWallaby a big, warm, sunny, Real Bay Area welcome as today’s Guest Blogger!

537 JACKSON St, San Jose, CA 95112


SQ. FT.: 725
$/SQ. FT.: $714
LOT SIZE: 5,617 Sq. Ft.
PROPERTY TYPE: Detached Single Family
VIEW: Neighborhood
COMMUNITY: Central San Jose
COUNTY: Santa Clara
MLS#: 81129934
STATUS: Active
ON REDFIN: 144 days

R2 Zone. Main house with private 1500sqft warehouse/workshop. Warehouse/workshop built without permit. Tenant occupied. BIG REDUCTION. SELLER MOTIVATED

imageTipping the scales at $714 per (permitted) foot this 725 square bantamweight contender for your investment dollar punches way above its weight class, as it includes a non-permitted twice-the-size-of-the-house attached warehouse!

And you’ll need it, if for no other reason than to store the grossly distended pride of ownership that comes along with buying what has to be the *shortest* house of in the neighborhood.


imageAnd with that R2 zoning you’ll be able to share that pride with the tenant that conveniently comes with the property, assuming you can convince the city to let you call whatever space is left over in your permit-impaired palace a second unit.

Listed in July for $590k, now’s your chance to steal it following a "BIG REDUCTION" to $518k. I have no idea why suddenly its "SELLER" is so "MOTIVATED" but don’t miss out on your chance to grab an extra $72k of instant equity. After all, Zillow thinks it might be worth up to $749,840!

(Ignore all the recent comps and those small-minded fools at, this house is totally worth the extra $200k+. Owning your own illegal warehouse is a privilege reserved for those willing to pay for it.)

Comments (12) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 5:01 am

July 29, 2011

New Appliances will be installed when property is in escrow, as existing ones went walkabout

A while back, we featured this pretty amazing listing on Bonita Avenue in San Jose.  Burbed reader SEA noticed that there was a McMansion complex wedged in right behind and observed that a number of the units had owners who forgot the old adage: Buy low, sell high, profit!  Here’s how things looked when SEA reported in:

House Number 2006/7 Sale Price 2011 List Price Notes
209 $630K $368K Pending w/release – Short Sale
261 $700K $400K Pending w/release – Short Sale
313 $703K $400K Pending w/release – Short Sale
317 $718K $405K Active – Short sale
321 $674K $415K Active – NOT short
353 $675K $400K Pending w/release – Short Sale
365 $698K $430K Active – Short sale

Looks like those former owners all got the saying backwards.  And obviously all that instant equity couldn’t be left alone, since these homes were quickly snapped up!  Fortunately, another house in Rayos del Sol is for sale, so it’s not too late to grab some instant equity for yourself.

305 RAYOS DEL SOL Dr, San Jose, CA 95116


BATHS: 2.5
SQ. FT.: 2,222
$/SQ. FT.: $198
LOT SIZE: 2,613 Sq. Ft.
PROPERTY TYPE: Detached Single Family
STYLE: Contemporary
COMMUNITY: Central San Jose
COUNTY: Santa Clara
MLS#: 81129495
STATUS: Active
ON REDFIN: 23 days

Beautiful home located in a nice complex with lovely grounds. Spacious 4 bed 2.5 bath with remodeled kitchen , freshly painted interior , new living room carpet , new a/c , new water heater, cozy fireplace and spacious rooms throughpout. Inside laundry with good storage space. great first time buyer or investor. New appliances with be installed when property is in escrow.

These pictures really do say it all, so you might as well enjoy every single one of them… after the break.


Comments (20) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 5:08 am

May 27, 2011

welcome this property permits unknown buyers to verify

Here’s this week’s find by Burbed reader Tracy.  It’s a house, I think.  It’s just not as big a house as it’s pretending to be.

1515 Pomona Ave, San Jose, CA 95110


SQ. FT.: 2,225
$/SQ. FT.: $125
LOT SIZE: 8,033 Sq. Ft.
VIEW: Neighborhood
COMMUNITY: Central San Jose
COUNTY: Santa Clara
MLS#: 81120310
STATUS: Pending With Release
ON REDFIN: 17 days

welcome this property has 2 units 2/1 in front unit and 3/2 unit in back permits unknown buyers to verify. The property is a fixer upper .

Here’s what Tracy had to say about today’s house:

What’s behind the blue curtain? Worst photography, ever, all that’s missing is a man peeing. The property seems to have a very large unit in the back, with no permits…

At least the price seems right, as this place is a dump! But pictures of dirty laundry? Shame!

Piles of dirty laundry?  For real?







And you asked what’s behind the blue curtain, but do you dare open the door and see what’s behind that red one?  Wow, this house is in even better shape for the real estate photos than the two dudes chillin’.  I bet this place is in just as fabulous a neighborhood, too.


Also, piles of instant equity in this place for you to unlock; sold for $650,000 in 2005!  What are you waiting for?  I’m waiting to figure out how to view the house in the back with more bedrooms and maybe even some permits that unknown buyers are to verify!  Think they put away their laundry?

Comments (7) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 5:11 am

May 6, 2011

Bonita Means Pretty, and so is this Place: Pretty Awful

Thanks to Burbed reader Tracy for this, um, well, I guess you could call it a house.

338 BONITA Ave, San Jose, CA 95116
$354, 250


BATHS: 3.5
SQ. FT.: 2,000
$/SQ. FT.: $177
LOT SIZE: 1,332 Sq. Ft.
PROPERTY TYPE: Detached Single Family
COMMUNITY: Central San Jose
COUNTY: Santa Clara
MLS#: 81116912
STATUS: Pending Without Release
ON REDFIN: 18 days

Two story, with separate living quarters on second floor. Has great potential, some updating completed, needs finishing. Property is situated at rear of flag lot. Single family, zoned R2, 2828 sqft interior, 7054 sqft lot per county records, buyer to verify zoning, permits & all square footage.

Here’s what Tracy had to say about this, um, delightful domicile:

Weird flag lot
Strange prices

imageOh oh.  When the listing says a lot is one size and the realtard says ignore that, it’s actually five times bigger, we know there’ll be hijinks aplenty closing on this one!

Also, if the listing figures are accurate, that means the FAR is 2000 sf/1332 sf = 1.50.  I don’t know what the allowable FAR is on an R2 lot, but I suspect it’s a lot lower than that, like maybe on the order of 0.5.

Plus it’s a really patriotic house.  Not only will you be rescuing the economy by purchasing it, it’s even on a flag lot!


Wow, the satellite imagery is so much more informative than the plat map!  image

Here’s a nice view of the house, complete with deck (CAN YOU GO ON THE DECK?) and a few dozen of the neighbor’s favorite vehicles.  And I call shenanigans on this realtard.  If 338 Bonita is a 7000 sf lot, that means it backs up to a trailer park full of 5000 sf manufactured tin boxes McMansions.

Also be sure to try to check this place out on Google Streetview.  Dick Cheney spent millions of our tax dollars on an undisclosed location.  You can have one for under $400,000!

Comments (12) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 5:03 am

April 18, 2011

Best. House. Ever.

Here’s a find from Burbed reader, now promoted to Burbed Guest Editor, sonarrat.  However, sonarrat asked me to handle this one because of a particular feature set, and no, it is not the little gold star this house somehow has earned from Redfin.

107 S 19TH St, San Jose, CA 95116


SQ. FT.: 4,400
$/SQ. FT.: $261
LOT SIZE: 10,500 Sq. Ft.
PROPERTY TYPE: Detached Single Family
STYLE: Contemporary
VIEW: Mountains, Neighborhood
COMMUNITY: Central San Jose
COUNTY: Santa Clara
MLS#: 81111392
STATUS: Active
ON REDFIN: 30 days

Grand home, perfect for large family nearby Naglee Park Area of San Jose * 8bed/6bath with a office * 2 gourmet kitchens * 2master suites * guest quarter with 2bed/1bath/livingroom/walking closet * Marble floors * 3car garage * Huge parking lot for many cars, RV and boat * 12years young * remodeled through out the house 2years ago, just like new * Easy access to majors freeways, parks, and SJSU.

107_S_19th_St_SJ_frontWhat makes a home grand?  Is it a 4400 square foot house in the middle of a bunch of hundred year old scrapers?  Is it having twice as many bedrooms or baths as a typical family needs, or even wants?  How about twice the kitchen or twice the master suites?

No, while these things may make the house ostentatiously oversized, only one feature allows a house to call itself grand, and I’m sure you remember what it is.

imageDat’s right!  Mawbul kawlums!  But this house goes one better than that.  Not only is it a stucco box that found room for six a dem dings, it has marble floors, too!

This has got to be the first time I’ve seen a house with marble columns manage to look like a 1960s cracker box.
imageBut hey, it’s got a huge parking lot for many cars, because the 3 car garage is obviously not enough.  (Wow, did the builder run out of money and not bother matching the garage doors?  Or is this some political commentary saying the Right has its eyes closed?)

I’m glad they included this shot of the parking lot, or I would have suspected they just paved the entire quarter acre lot to save money on pesky greenscaping.


Definitely what happened.  Can’t say there isn’t anything green out here.

Picnic table: definitely green.

So.  Let’s move on.  You can check out the two full kitchens yourself, I assure you they have the obligatory stainless and granite.  Instead, how about this listing history?


Yes!  Marble columns, flip,  AND foreclosure!  Isn’t that grand?  Let’s check with Zillow on those missing listing prices.image

“Any time I roll anything out, my plan is the best one in the room and people are starting to realize that.Their plan is s**t and my plan is gold. Walk into my plan and you’re going to win, win, win.”

Comments (14) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 5:12 am

February 6, 2011

Luxury Downtown SJ Condos Transforming Into Apartments

In case you were wondering if downtown San Jose needed more luxury condominium towers, looks like the answer is a big, fat no.  Thanks to Burbed reader sonarrat for alerting us to this story.

Struggling downtown San Jose condo tower to switch to rentals

By Joe Rodriguez, SJ Mercury News –  Posted: 02/02/2011 04:45:28 PM PST, Updated: 02/03/2011 08:34:16 AM PST

imageThe Three Sixty Residences, a luxury condominium tower offering panoramic views of Silicon Valley, has done a 180-degree fizzle. The downtown San Jose project will become a rental apartment building.

Condos or rentals, who cares?

That’s how downtowners feel after waiting years for four large condominium projects to dump thousands of new residents onto sidewalks and into coffee houses, restaurants and retail shops. So far, sales at the projects are creeping along after the housing market tanked.

Thank heaven that nonsense is over.  The idea of building apartment towers and selling off the interior units one by one was a great way for developers to make money.  As long as real estate kept going up, it was even a great way for condo owners to make money.  However, the game of musical chairs came to a halt and a number of condo owners find themselves under water.  Units filled with renters, or even worse, units filled with nobody, means the condo lifestyle isn’t at all what they imagined.  Homeowner fees climb even faster when not everyone is paying them.

imageSo take a look at this diagram from the article.  How did The Three Sixty manage to not sell a single condo if they used to have 90 of them under contract?  Did they just cancel them all?  Did the would-be owners get their deposits back?

And do you see what’s wrong with this picture?  Actually what’s wrong is the statistics.  We don’t care how many floors versus sold units there are in each building.  What’s important is how many units didn’t sell, because that would tell us how well these other three projects are doing.  Or, more likely, how not well.

Edward Tufte, where are you and why aren’t you publicly calling out the graphic designer for this image?

Since the Merc didn’t bother to tell you what you need to know, we will.  Here is how well each of the four major downtown high-rise condominium projects have sold.

Project Year Built Total Units Units Sold % Sold
City Heights 2007 124 99 80%
Axis 2008 329 138 42%
The 88 2008 197 117 59%
Three Sixty 2010 213 0 0%


And an even more important thing you need to know: Three Sixty Residences has been featured in Burbed, back when there were units for sale. So much for “finally got a piece of the pie.” Only owners get pie.  Renters just get to sniff it coming out of the oven.

The solution?  Make the pie higher!

Comments (40) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 5:15 am

December 1, 2010

Cheapest house in San Jose


Beds: 2
Baths: 1
Sq. Ft.: 749
$/Sq. Ft.: $238
Lot Size: 2,784 Sq. Ft.
Property Type: Detached Single Family
Stories: 1
Year Built: 1935
Community: Central San Jose
County: Santa Clara
MLS#: 81025386
Source: MLSListings
Status: ActiveThis listing is for sale and the sellers are accepting offers.
On Redfin: 176 days
Good starter home. Lots of potential.

Black Friday deals continue!

Here is the cheapest house in San Jose. Wow, at just $178, this is quote the steal. Sure it’s a bit peculiar to have 2 bedrooms in just 749 square feet, but who is counting.

I love the pithy description. “Good starter home. Lots of potential.” It’s almost zen like in its description!

I’m sure this would make a great stocking stuffer for someone in your family. Surely there must be someone you know who is looking for a turquoise colored house in the Bay Area!

Deals deals deals!

Comments (14) -- Posted by: burbed @ 5:54 am

November 23, 2010


Another great find from Burbed reader sonarrat!  I tell you, if it weren’t for sonarrat you’d be reading about Sunnyvale every single day!  This house was sent in because, “I had no idea this neighborhood was so hot. Is it because of the easy access to bail bonds?”

130 Rankin Ave, San Jose, CA 95110


Beds: 3
Baths: 4.5
Sq. Ft.: 1,852
$/Sq. Ft.: $377
Lot Size: 5,000 Sq. Ft.
Property Type: Detached Single Family
Style: Colonial
Stories: 2
View: Neighborhood
Year Built: 1937
Community: Central San Jose
County: Santa Clara
MLS#: 81029707
Source: MLSListings
Status: Active
On Redfin: 157 days


I went through every one of these pictures and there are no FRENCH WINDS anywhere.  I’d even accept ENGLISH WINDS or WOOD WINDS.  Just no BREAK WINDS, though.

image Also I can’t find the BASE BOARDING the PARTIAL BASEMENT (or should that be a PARTIAL BASE MENT?).  Definitely another case of DECEPTIVE LISTING COPY.

But maybe this place is worth it for the classic console television,  If they throw that in, then it really would be A RARE FIND.

And if it is indeed a DTWN JEWEL then you’d have to worry about being arrested for STEALING it at this low, low price.  Fortunately, sonarrat helpfully informed us about the easy access to bail bonds services.


Right.  Looks like there are a number of fine agencies competing for our business!

Competition is a wonderful thing, but I am wondering if this TRULY MAGNIFICENT & ELEGANT VENDOME NEIGHBORHOOD has some basic niceties beyond having ten different bail bonds offices within two minutes’ drive.

On the plus side, with this LOCATION, LOCATION, LOCATION, you could rent out some extra bedrooms and bathrooms), plus that PARTIAL BASE MENT, to the city or county as an Overflow Jail Annex.  Your “guests” will appreciate how quickly the bail reps can show up!  The police will give you concierge service knowing some perp they bust is more likely to stay busted, thanks to your innovative inmate solution.  The neighborhood louts will steer clear of the serious muscle inside.  And you’ll appreciate knowing this house is making money for you every single day.

Comments (36) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 5:02 am

November 19, 2010

Options for Fraternity House, Business, Restaurant or Duplex

Today’s listing is brought to you by Burbed reader sonarrat.  Here’s what sonarrat has to say about today’s featured house!  “Yep, I had a view of this house from my classes at SJSU.”

237 E San Fernando St, San Jose, CA 95112

image Beds: –
Baths: –
Sq. Ft.: 2,250
$/Sq. Ft.: $533
Lot Size: 6,165 Sq. Ft.
Stories: 2
View: Neighborhood
Year Built: 1920
Community: Central San Jose
County: Santa Clara
MLS#: 81023941
Source: MLSListings
Status: Active
On Redfin: 186 days

Amazing opportunity in prime location – right next to SJSU and behind San Jose City Hall. This fantastic property has 11 rooms (possible to add 3 more), 3 bathrooms, common area, coin operated laundry machine in the spacious basement. Plenty of parking spaces available in the large backyard. Options for Fraternity house, business, restaurant or duplex. Buyers to confirm use permits.

imageWow, sonarrat, I’m speechless.  Has there ever been a property on Burbed before where the agent suggests it would make a great Frat house?  Fraternity brothers take such good care of the premises, too!  It would be such a shame to turn this into a business or restaurant instead. Then it could burn down when a waiter trips holding a tray full of flaming shots for the frat brothers who bought down the street.

Look, we know in life there are winners and there are losers.  Not everyone who can send their kids to college gets to send them to Stanford.  So if your son or daughter is as upset about their options as you’ll be, why not pick up this conveniently located little dwelling as a consolation prize, and skip the whole dorm thing?  Let the college kid learn about the real world by writing leases, collecting rents and evicting deadbeats!  Plus, you can sell it at a profit in seven or eight years when your child finally graduates. Yes, seven or eight years, because with those budget cuts, there’s no way the school’s letting anyone graduate in just four.

Real Bay Area property doubles every ten years, so this is an investment that more than pays for itself.  Remember, it’s got a coin-operated laundry machine.

Comments (5) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 5:09 am