September 24, 2013

Reader Request: Live/Work Situation

Here’s one of the more intriguing emails we’ve gotten this year:

I came across burbed and it seems like you have an eye on what’s going on.

We’re looking for a fairly unique place for our company. Something in the SF area (south bay preferred), with a great view.

I realise you’re not an agent, but thought you might be aware of something interesting.

  • 20,000sq ft+
  • great views

We’re a close knit company that live and work together. We realised that for the price of us getting modest apartments and a simple office we could instead live in a mansion together and so far that’s been a much nicer option, but we’re currently spread over three houses and need a bigger place where can live and work together again.

Wow, didn’t we just discuss hacker houses last week? Why, yes we did! Perhaps the above email was in response to our in-depth coverage of someone else’s in-depth coverage!

And well, actually we are indeed a bunch of agents, we just neglected to let anyone know it.  So since our entire writing staff appears to have taken off the last six months, we’re going to throw this one open to our far-flung network of readers, some of which aren’t just pretend agents.

Please reply in comments, and we’re sure our requester will respond to you if you actually found what they’re looking for.  And of course, we expect a 15% finders fee, which beats a 6% commission.

Also note that said reader neglected to say whether this was a purchase or rental. Ha ha! Now they’re going to get all kinds of unsuitable suggestions because they weren’t specific enough! Maybe they’ll post in comments, especially because they don’t want us to shoot the dog.

PS… Turns out they did tell us, in a follow-up:

We’re keen for exciting options, even if a little terrifying. Ideal is rent with option to buy in a year and build more on the land, but renting a large place for 6-12months is a viable option.

Alright! The race to pay us that 15% finders fee is ON! And you can be sure we’ll be holding it for ransom if you expect us to pass it on quietly to the OP.  Put it in the comment, though? Free-for-all!  We’re hoping this one post will generate at least 16 more live/work rent/buy situations just form people reading about this group.

Comments (14) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 7:07 am






September 23, 2013

Complete fixer could be charming

Today’s entry doesn’t mince any words. It also disdains the use of exterior photography for the cover shot.

130923-stjames-redfin288 SAINT JAMES Dr
Piedmont, CA 94611
$950,000

3 Beds
2.5 Baths
2,227 Sq. Ft.
$427 / Sq. Ft.
Built: 1927
Lot Size: 0.29 Acres
On Redfin: 10 days
Status: Active
Type:Detached
Stories: 2
Community: Piedmont
MLS#: 40631365
Style: Normandy
View: Wooded
County: Alameda

Complete fixer in good location on large parcel. Could be very charming needs everything.

Oh, how cute. Now they’re running real estate ads in The New Yorker. Guess they have to hire cartoonists when this what it really looks like.

130923-stjames-photo130923-stjames-kitchen130923-stjames-wtf130923-stjames-srsly-wtf

Comments (14) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 7:01 am

September 22, 2013

Post some comments or else… Part Deux

20130921-dog-gunYou enjoy this site? Well, then, this requires your assistance. Good content needs good comments to keep more good content coming.

Yesterday we threatened a stock photo of a house if we didn’t see more comments pronto. Today, we up the ante.

Remember this iconic image?

And if you’re too young to remember it, well, you can read it, can’t you?

Thought you could.

We don’t think we have to spell it out, now, do we?

Fine. We’ll spell it out. Post some more comments or the dog gets it.

And don’t give us any crap about this dog probably being dead already since the magazine cover was from January, 1973. He’s been brought back to life… in Bucharest.

This is also your Weekend Open Thread, not that that ever made any difference.

Comments (10) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 7:09 am

September 21, 2013

Post some comments… or we burn this house down

130920-arson-commentAlright, so the site’s been having some access and downtime issues. We know, but we can’t do anything about it. Do you see us complaining?

Well, yes. Yes, you do.

Too many of you are giving up instead of pressing Reload over and over and over until the 502 Bad Gateway error goes away. So, it’s come to this. Make some comments so we know you’re reading… or this innocent stock photo of a house, who hasn’t hurt anyone at all except for the Photoshopper who get second degree burns adding the extra flames… gets it.

And think of all the other innocent houses who will have an even worse fate. That’s right, if you don’t speak up in comments, thousands and thousands of houses will never get a chance to appear on the front page of Burbed ever. Now think about it, that means your house may never appear, even if you wanted it to be famous!

Reload, respond, and refresh.  Not just a good idea. It will keep the houses posted.  And at room temperature.

Comments (15) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 7:07 am

September 20, 2013

Cheapest House in San Jose: Just add imagination & love

Tired of seeing three million dollars for a cracker box in Palo Alto?  Us, too.  Here’s how far you can S-T-R-E-T-C-H your dollar if you’re willing to look in San Jose. Well, the Special parts, anyway.

130919-drake-redfin602 DRAKE St
San Jose, CA 95125
$319,000

2 Beds
1 Baths
966 Sq. Ft.
$330 / Sq. Ft.
Built: 1948
Lot Size: 4,840 Sq. Ft.
On Redfin: 8 days
Status: Active
Property Type: Detached Single Family
Community: Willow Glen
MLS#: 81333635
Stories: 1
County: Santa Clara

Diamond in the rough, Corner lot with potential, with some imagination and love you can turn it into your dream home. Large backyard with room for RV or boat parking. Detached garage, perfect for an at home workshop. ALL CASH ONLY. Property condition restricts financing options.

Didn’t we already have a diamond in the rough this week? This one appears to be a little rougher. At least it won’t set you back too much scratch. And here’s why.

130919-drake-patio130919-drake-rear

Not only do you get these lovely pavers, the shadowing on the house makes it look jauntily nautical. Um, that is if “tugboat” can go in that nautical category.

130919-drake-room130919-drake-bedroom

And don’t worry about the low price meaning you’ll do without amenities! As you can clearly observe, the house does have rooms in it!

130919-drake-rous

There’s more! Looks like we found another R.O.U.S, stronghold as well!  That’s two this week!

And here’s really why this place is such a bargain: Location, location, location! Although this location sure ain’t Willow Glen.

130919-drake-satellite

Bunus: Dorky datestamps on photos are from July!

Click here to post a comment -- Posted by: madhaus @ 7:03 am

September 19, 2013

It’s Search Engine Thursday!

130918-search-dummyToday’s Search Engine result is what happened when someone typed something into a search engine and ended up on Burbed.  Ready?

bay area too crowded to too expensive to live

Boom!  Our keyword-rich title is Number Six, and we think it’s full of Number Two!

Hah! Somebody isn’t living in the Real Bay Area or they would never say anything like that! Why, in the Real Bay Area you can spend millions of dollars and still have a generous 6,000 square foot lot for your 1500 sf house! That’s only crowded if you’re sharing it with 8 other Googlers!

Click here to post a comment -- Posted by: madhaus @ 7:01 am

September 18, 2013

Diamond in the rough. Really rough. For many diamonds.

We’re continuing this Week of Win, jumping to a new county each time. Today we’re headed to Santa Clara, the Mission City.  As in, your mission, should you decide to accept it, is to tell us everything you just love about today’s featured property!

We’ll start. It’s on a street named for an architect!

130917-wren-redfin990 WREN Ave
Santa Clara, CA 95051
$1,598,000

3 Beds
2.5 Baths
2,250 Sq. Ft.
$710 / Sq. Ft.
Built: 1963
Lot Size: 0.52 Acres
On Redfin: 55 days
Status: Active
Property Type: Detached Single Family
Stories: 1
Community: Santa Clara
MLS#: 81326991
Style: Traditional
View: Neighborhood
County: Santa Clara

* Diamond in the rough * Huge Lot * Buyer to verify if the property can be subdivided into 3 lots * With TLC, this house is full of potential

130917-wren-lawnThis house is indeed full of something.  Unfortunately there are no pictures inside so we’re going to have to guess what that is.

Also we’re scratching our heads over how much potential this home is full of, especially with the subdivision suggestion. Maybe it has the potential to have even uglier houses much closer.

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

September 17, 2013

A house for a Princess Bride in Daly City

Some houses are straight from a fairy tale, some from Hollywood, and some are from a story book.  So is this delightful domicile in Daly City, which includes some magical features!

130916-sandiego-redfin363 San Diego Ave
Daly City, CA 94014
$699,000

4 Beds
3 Baths
— Sq. Ft.
Built: —
Lot Size: —
On Redfin: 53 days
Status: Active
Property Type: Detached, Single-Family Home
Community: Original Daly City
MLS#: 411057
Style: Traditional, Cottage
County: San Mateo

New Remodel detach craftsmen house comes with 3 bedroom and 2 bath. High ceiling, Large living dining area. Included in Master suite walking cloth set, amazing full bath with 6ft jet tub, walk-in showing. second bathroom has build-in washer and dryer. 1 year old roof, new water heater and New Furnace. Long drive way can park up to 4 cars. separated cottage with additional 1 bed 1 bath need some TLC but great Potential. separate large garage need TLC. Large Lot with 2 back yard area.

130916-sandiego-livingA walking cloth set? Sold! And it comes with a walk-in showing! That’s a whole lot of walking going on in this fairy-tale cottage! But wait, there’s more!

This amazing living room is exactly where you would find one of the many delightful featured creatures in the movie The Princess Bride. We hope you can spot it right away.

If you can’t, here’s a free clue.  Just go watch the film now that you know where the ROUS live.

130916-sandiego-roundtableMaybe that’s why the house has been on and off the market since 2009.

Bunus: Many houses featured on Burbed have photos of neighborhood features included in the listing.  This home, like many others, has a few shots taken in the general vicinity of the house, including the BART station (just 4 blocks away!).  Whoo-whoo!

But we believe this is the first listing we’ve ever seen that included a pic of a Round Table Pizza franchise.

Comments (5) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 7:03 am

September 16, 2013

CONTRACTORS DREAM! in Fremont

Happy Monday! Let’s get back to some housing win by sticking our toe just the teensiest bit into the East Bay. Noooo, we don’t mean Oakland or Berkeley or Richmond. We mean just over the Alameda County line but almost in Silicon Valley: Fremont! Or as our hard-working real estate professionals call it: Fre-tastic!*

130915-mission-redfin37503 MISSION Blvd
Fremont, CA 94536
$509,000

3 Beds
2 Baths
1,814 Sq. Ft.
$281 / Sq. Ft.
Built: 1910
Lot Size: 10,000 Sq. Ft.
On Redfin: 10 days
Status: Active
Type: 2 Houses on 1 Lot
Community: Fremont
MLS#: 40630404
View: Hills
County: Alameda

FIXER UPPER! HANDYMAN SPECIAL! CONTRACTORS DREAM! TWO HOMES ON ONE 10,000 SQ FT LOT! 880 SQ FT SHOP! LOTS OF PARKING! CHECK W/ CITY REGARDING POSSIBILITIES!

130915-mission-cabinets* This is somewhat of an exaggeration on our part (by which we mean a complete lie). We don’t know anyone who calls the city Fre-tastic, although we did overhear one realtard tell a client that this area was Fre-netic. That’s good, right?

And speaking of good, this will be an awesome house for any small children you happen to have lying around. Not only is the playground all set up in front, look what’s in your back yard!

130915-mission-railway

That’s not just ordinary railroad tracks, but a railroad station for Niles Canyon Railway. Yes, good old-fashioned trains, in your very own backyard! Or close enough to smell them, anyway! Whoo-whoo!  Oops, we mean WHOO-WHOO!

CHECK W/ CITY REGARDING POSSIBILITIES!

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

September 15, 2013

Hacker House dies from excessive self-image, brand overexposure

Almost exactly a year ago, we took a look at group housing as not just a way to save on rent, but as launching pad to future success.  Some of these homes were in San Francisco, some were in Silicon Valley.  The most well-known one in the Valley might have been the Rainbow Mansion.  Of course, it has a website.

Now Buzzfeed has a fairly longish piece on the implosion of a shared SF house that saw itself as more than just a bunch of geeks splitting the rent.  Or an “intentional community.” Burbed readers, meet the Rise mansion, formerly known as TheGlint. Right, no space. Thanks very much to Burbed reader nomadic for alerting us to this story.

The Rise And Fall Of A Startup Mansion

130914-rise-viewStartups, pizza, ego, beer, filth. The collapse of a hacker house and the battle for Silicon Valley’s soul.

Justine Shamrocks, BuzzFeed Staff, posted on August 26, 2013 at 2:20pm EDT

When William Hsu first moved to San Francisco to work in startups, he got a one-bedroom apartment. “I thought that was the adult thing to do, the thing I was supposed to do,” Hsu says. “But it kind of sucked actually to go home and no one was there. It was kind of depressing.” He missed college. Like many other young techies, his career development was outpacing his social development.

Instead of just getting roommates, he applied to live with 15 other guys at a San Francisco “startup mansion,” which he later went on to run. As more and more young techies like Hsu move into the notoriously expensive city, these “hacker houses” are becoming a rising trend. Varying in size from about 5 to 20 people, they are sort of commune-meets-incubator-meets-dorm. Each has its own vibe, reflecting the different sub-scenes of the of the tech world from visionaries to brogrammers, grad students to hackers, as well as people working at big companies. Some houses are more established and formal; others, chiefly casual.

I first heard about Hsu’s house when I saw the Craigslist ad for the “Live/Work Startup Mansion with sweeping views of San Francisco!” looking to add “cool new people.”

“Come check it out, seriously,” the ad said.

130914-rise-craigslistThe Craigslist ad pointed to this Business Insider writeup, which was essentially a photo diary about where several of Peter Thiel’s Fellows ended up.

Shared housing in a place of high rental costs is nothing new. What is different was when a group of people sharing a bigger than normal house begin to have bigger than normal ideas about what they’re actually doing.

Much bigger than normal:

"The truth is that The Glint is a live-work community that accelerates the creation and creators of value through design, philosophy, the arts & sciences, technology and entrepreneurship. It aspires to shift the conception of heroism from historical warrior ideals to a new paradigm of creativity, collaboration and innovation"

And if you think that’s bad, their two-word tagline for the group home was “Heroism Accelerator.”

That’s going to need the “ginormous” tag all by itself.  Which it isn’t going to earn according to Redfin.

130914-rise-streetview170 Saint Germain Ave
San Francisco, CA 94114
Sold for $1,400,000

4 Beds
3 Baths
4,300 Sq. Ft.
$326 / Sq. Ft.
Built: 1938
Lot Size: 4,996 Sq. Ft.
Sold On: Jun 5, 2003
Status: Sold Source: Public Records

And yes, we realize this doesn’t bear a lot of resemblance to the photos in the article, which is why we doublechecked a bit. And this Bing bird’s eye image (right) looks more like the one in the story (left).

130914-rise-bf-craigslist130914-rise-birdseye“One of my jokes for a while was that the whole point of TheGlint was to save the planet, at least according to them. But they couldn’t even save the house,” Gooen says. “Imagine taking the most successful CEOs and putting them in a house together in a reality TV show to organize the dishes and house maintenance. That was almost what it was like. Although they were not as successful. They just thought they were.”

130914-rise-getshitdoneHah.  This is still before TheGlint was shut down and two renters took over the lease and rebranded the house as Rise. Now instead of “changing the planet,” they just wanted to network the heck out of each other.

Hilarity ensues.

This is also your Weekend Open Thread. Ever live in a group house?  Did you ever actually “Get Sh*t Done”?

Comments (3) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 7:07 am