May 10, 2013

Bay Area Bubble 4.0 Lands in… Walnut Creek!

All week we’ve been looking at examples of No Bubble Here, all over the San Francisco Bay Area. But today’s house shows otherwise.  Thanks very much to the Burbed reader who sent this in but wouldn’t make up a dorky nickname. (Warning: next time we make one up for you.)

130509-meadow-redfinUndisclosed Address
Walnut Creek, CA 94595
$550,000

4 Beds
2.5 Baths
2,213 Sq. Ft.
$249 / Sq. Ft.
Built: 1947
Lot Size: 0.30 Acres
On Redfin: 14 days
Type: Detached
Stories: 1
County: Contra Costa
Style: Ranch
Community: Walnut Creek
MLS#: 40612224

Great area of Walnut Creek, large level yard, needs lots of work bring your contractor NOT handyman!!

Here’s what Burbed reader Too Lazy To Even Try To Make Up My Own Nickname had to say about this listing:

I know inventory is tight where I’m looking but $550K????? For what?

Naming rights? Ahahahahaha!  Actually for $550K you also get the street name, which we will kindly provide to all our readers for absolutely nothing.  What better proof of a bubble is there than sellers who won’t tell you where the danged house is?

130509-meadow-movotoMeadow Rd,
Walnut Creek, CA 94595
$550,000

Loan Payment: $1,885/mo
Bedrooms: 4
Bathrooms: 2&1/2
Size: 2,213 sqft
$/sqft: $248/sqft
Type: Single Family House
Year Built: 1947
Lot Size: 12,900
Days on Movoto: 14 days
MLS#: 40612224
Status: Pending

Great area of Walnut Creek, large level yard, needs lots of work bring your contractor NOT handyman!!

Oh, what’s this, you want a street number as well? Picky, picky. Some people are just so demanding.

130509-meadow-google-where

Estately’s listing doesn’t have the address anymore, so let’s hear it for latency in search engines!  Let’s also hear it for the great job Zillow did hiding that this place is for sale.

130509-meadow-zillow

Bring your contractor and CIA agent not handyman and GPS!

Comments (4) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 5:02 am






May 6, 2013

UPDATED: Kawlums! Mawbul kawlums! Git yer kawlums he-uh in El Cerrito!

It’s been far too long since we’ve heard from one of our favorite correspondents from the East Bay, Burbed reader A Lewis.  A (he says we can still call him A) writes in to let us know that there is still real estate worth following in his favorite city of El Cerrito. Let’s have a look and listen in.

130505-barrett-redfin6332 Barrett
El Cerrito, CA 94530
Sold for $1,200,000

3 Beds
2.5 Baths
3,441 Sq. Ft.
$349 / Sq. Ft.
Built: 1941
Lot Size: 0.54 Acres
Sold On: Apr 19, 2013
Type: Detached
Stories: 2
County: Contra Costa
Style: Colonial
Community: Miravista Highls
MLS#: 40608299

a classic Colonial Revival on a 1/2 acre estate. Custom built with lavish attention to detail. Features include a 2 story tall portico at the entrance a wide spiral staircase to the upper floor inside, and fabulous access to patios and gardens from various entry level rooms. Ideal for entertaining

130505-barrett-windowTake it away, A!

Update 6:45 pm: A says it’s fine to include the following graf that we thought was social chitchat just for us.

** Sorry I abandoned the site – but I’ve been priced out forever, and Real Estater was right about the stock market, so I just had to admit my own limitations and tried to spend time thinking about things besides real estate. I’m still a renter. But I can’t stop myself from occasionally looking at Redfin in my neighborhood, which you will recall is the hills of El Cerrito – 94530 baby! **

Here’s a house I know that tried to sell in 2008 for $1.2M, failed pitifully because of the ‘crash’, but they waited it out, and lo and behold, they got their price last week! And I wanted to share the listing because the first pick has 6, yes 6 columns showing!

130505-barrett-2windowsSo in my mind, prices in the hills of El Cerrito are back to peak levels, and appear to be rising.

I don’t know if that qualifies us for RBA status, but we seem to be back to where we were in 2007 (oh, except for having about 25% of the inventory), a crazed over-bidding environment on places that need a lot of work. People writing letters with their offers to beg for the privilege of buying with no contingencies, etc…

I guess another difference is how much buying is all-cash – in 2007, I think there was a lot more leveraging.

130505-barrett-anotherviewIt’s a great time to sell a house, that’s for sure. But I can’t afford to buy one – oh well! I’d say I missed my chance, which was about Q1 2012, but prices hadn’t dropped enough for me to afford things even then.

Maybe the next crash will be harder. Maybe not – I bought a lotto ticket last month as an alternative way to solve the problem…

Looking at how bekawlumned this house is, we don’t understand why A didn’t sell every vehicle, video, and spare family members to own this house. Every bedroom just screams, “Oh my God, I live here!”  Why this is almost as impressive as what you can get in Palo Alto for a similar asking price.

Can you imagine what you’d have to pay for kawlums in The Real Bay Area?

Comments (4) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 5:07 am

May 2, 2013

Will not last in Mountain View: this is under valued

Surprised it’s still there, what with all that value in the land.  Thanks to Burbed reader LomaLovr for the find.

130501-leghorn-refin1950 LEGHORN St
Mountain View, CA 94043
$799,000

3 Beds
1.5 Baths
1,456 Sq. Ft.
$549 / Sq. Ft.
Built: 1966
Lot Size: 0.52 Acres
On Redfin: 7 days
Property Type: Detached Single Family Community: Rengstorff MLS#: 81313653
Stories: 1
County: Santa Clara

Rare opportunity to own this half acre lot with a single family home grandfathered on it. Zoned MM40 for commercial or industrial use. Single family home can be used as an office upon ok by city for business purpose. 200 sq ft basement. Property can not be developed into other residential aspects. Property can not be subdivided. Easy access to 101. Property will not last, this is under valued.

Upcoming Open Houses

Sunday, May 5: 1:00-4:00 pm

Buried in the cached copy are these comments:

Investment Property Possibilities Endless .51 acre lot Can be commercial property. Zoned MM40 Grandfathered Single Family Home on lot.

130501-leghorn-lot130501-leghorn-floors

Comments (8) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 5:04 am

April 13, 2013

Location, Location, Location in Los Altos!

BlogAtoZ-LHappy Saturday and weekend! We’re one Letter Less than halfway through the Blogging from A to Z Challenge. Remember blog Life before this Lunacy when a Lousy Los Gatos Lanai would Light up the comment thread? Yeah, we don’t either.

So we’ll play what’s Laid, and that’s this Lulu of a Listing in Los Altos with a Likely Large Lot.

130412-sanantonio-redfin757 N SAN ANTONIO Rd
Los Altos, CA 94022
$1,199,000

3 Beds
2 Baths
1,330 Sq. Ft.
$902 / Sq. Ft.
Built: 1952
Lot Size: 9,270 Sq. Ft.
On Redfin: 23 days
Property Type: Detached Single Family
Stories: 1
County: Santa Clara
Style: Ranch
Community: North Los Altos
MLS#: 81308943

Charming and welcoming Los Altos ranch home. Freshly painted inside and outside. Multiple recent upgrades: kitchen, roof, garage door, double pane windows, floors, etc. Award winning Los Altos Schools. Close to schools, shopping and restaurants.

Upcoming Open Houses

Saturday, Apr 13: 1:00-5:00 pm
Sunday, Apr 14: 1:00-5:00 pm

130412-sanantonio-landscapeLook, Listing Lusciousness is all Location, Location, Location. And this Location says it’s close to schools, shopping, and restaurants. Let’s Learn how Close.  Across the (very busy) street is Bullis Charter School, already Lovingly Lauded on this website! (And you know when we Lovingly Laud something, that means the exact opposite of Lovingly Laud.)

Like the Landscaping? This Low-maintenance approach not only saves time, money, and Liquids, you’ll never have to Lift a Limb watering the front Lawn. (That’s because it Lacks one.)

130412-sanantonio-kitchenLug yourself north and you’ll find the restaurants.  Lots of them. Actually you have Little choice about Leaning north; the Lean-to is on the northbound side of a divided four-Lane thoroughfare.

Other than that, why hasn’t this Locale sold in 23 days, in this Lava-hot market? The Listing agent already Lowered the price at Least 14%!

Let us know if you Look in at the Open House this weekend!

Comments (2) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 5:05 am

March 28, 2013

Space for 7-14 vehicles, dance or artist’s studio, bowling alley, wrestling etc.

Most of our submissions come to us via email (contact info available in the upper right hand column).  Today’s featured fortress, from the wilds of San Jose Country Club near Santa Teresa del Fuego, was passed on to us via the Bat Signal. A Redfin Forums reader started a new thread and suggested that this home ought to join the Real Bay Area Is Awesome article, better known as What Can You Buy In The Bay Area for $3.3 million?  Well, let’s find out, courtesy of Burbed Reader HomeBuyer25!

130327-country-redfin5752 COUNTRY CLUB Pkwy
San Jose, CA 95138
$3,350,000

HOA Dues: $120/mo.
7 Beds
8.5 Baths
13,100 Sq. Ft.
$256 / Sq. Ft.
Built: 2006
Lot Size: 0.53 Acres
On Redfin: 1 day
Status: Active
HOA Dues: $120/month
Style: Mediterranean
View: Bay, Green Belt, Mountains, Canyon, Neighborhood, Valley, City Lights, Golf Course
County: Santa Clara
Property Type: Detached Single Family
Stories: 3
Community: Evergreen
MLS#: 81309594130327-country-xmas

Prestigious Silver Creek Valley Country Club! Premium oversized parcel 23,140 sq. ft. featuring 13,100 s. f. residence w/ separate full guest quarters. Space for 7-14 vehicles, weight room, full basement, extra rooms for storage, dance or artist’s studio, wine cellar, bowling alley, wrestling etc. Amenities include radiant heated marble slab floors, 22 ft foyer, gym & theatre, 600 amp panel etc.

130327-country-kawlums600 amp panel? Sold!  And that’s just for starters!

Because you know what else this place has? Elegance! Prestige! Why it’s boisting wit’ klayuss! Why? Kawlums!  Everything’s better with kawlums!

Although, not so fast. A look at the property history suggests this place has been on the market a lot more than one day. Or one time.  Take a look at the death throes of someone’s dream:

130327-country-history

130327-country-kawlums2Hey, the price has been going back up for almost a year! Even the short sales show that Bay Area Bubble 4.0 is firmly inflated!  Blurry pictures, Christmas at Easter, more than a 50% haircut with amazing price history going back six years, and if you spent this much money in Palo Alto, there wouldn’t be a kawlum in sight!

Is that #winning or what?

Now, everyone submit your best prediction on what will be the winning overbid!

Comments (14) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 5:01 am

March 12, 2013

One of a kind with creek and stone bridge that adds to its charm

How would you like to live in Los Gatos and not spend a million dollars?  Wish granted!  Thanks very much to Burbed reader wahnny for this, um, residence.

130311-shannon-redfin16005 SHANNON Rd
Los Gatos, CA 95032
$788,000

1 Beds
1 Baths
668 Sq. Ft.
$1,180 / Sq. Ft.
Built: 1940
Lot Size: 10,800 Sq. Ft.
On Redfin: 4 days
Property Type: Detached Single Family
Stories: 1
Community: Los Gatos/Monte Sereno
MLS#: 81307108
Style: Cottage/Bungalow
View: Neighborhood
County: Santa Clara

Los Gatos Schools. Unique property on desired street. Upscale neighborhood surrounded by multimillion dollar properties. House has beautiful country setting with beautiful redwoods. It’s tranquil and private. One of a kind with creek and stone bridge that adds to its charm. Close to town, restaurants, Whole Food Market, etc. Additional storage or workshop inside of garage. Lots of potential.

130311-shannon-frontYou know this is going to be a good one when they don’t’ show the house until picture #5.  Now let’s check in with wahnny.

Some additional data points that further support the Bubble 4.0 hypothesis.

A cobbled-together 1940s cottage in (possibly RBA) Los Gatos.

The photos don’t do it justice.

130311-shannon-livingVisited during open house (along with several other groups), and although nicely staged, the place is tiny (or, as the Redfin video understates, "compact")! 

It was amusing to listen to the realtor speak of all the positive possibilities (e.g., the house could be torn down or rebuilt (e.g., adding 2nd level)) while minimizing the downsides (creekside property is literally in a flood zone, and would require special build permits/fun with the county).  Yes, yes, value is in the land, but is it really worth more than the Bubble 3.0 sold price?

We also love how the video states that the house is “on the water” and that the 1-car garage means “you’ll always have a place to park your car!”  Also the view of the back patio reminded us of a famous house.

130311-shannon-view

See some resemblance?

130311-shannon-incredibles-house

If you don’t recognize this house, click here.

Comments (6) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 5:03 am

February 26, 2013

UPDATED: AOL tries being Burbed for a day: Let your imagination run wild

130225-aol-wg-front

Updated 11:30 AMSecond house found; see end for details and plenty of pix!

AOL has been doing a real estate area for a while, including a series of videos and articles beyond the listings and search tools. Someone over there must have been reading us, because they did a piece discovering that (gasp!) there are very expensive yet definitely crappy houses for sale in the Real Bay Area.  Worse, they had the gall to call this an “AOL original.”

Have they been living under a rock? This has been our signature claim for more than seven years! Let’s listen in as self-important talking heads who don’t bother introducing themselves tell us what we already know.  (Warning: dude with beard is extra smug.)

 

M’kay.  There’s some really useless accompanying text, so our mission is to do a slightly better job.  Remember, it’s fairly easy to succeed when you set your standards this low.

Decrepit Homes in San Francisco Bay Area Fetch Top Dollar for Mountain Views

130225-aol-rwcBy AOL Real Estate Editors | Posted Feb 21st 2013 5:14PM

A sorry-looking shack, with deep cracks in the cinder-block walls and busted windows, that looks like it’s ready to collapse: You wouldn’t pay a dime for that, would you? OK, say it’s nestled in the gorgeous hilltops of the San Francisco Peninsula with no shortage of pristine mountain views. Now how much would you pay? More than $1 million? Well, that’s how much it’s going for.

130225-aol-wgWe’ve probably violated Fair Use by quoting an entire graf, because there’s only one more.  There’s also only two homes in the video, and only the more than $1 million OMFG Emerald Hills (Redwood City) place (shown above in a clip from the video) has mountain views.  The other (at left, also clipped from the video) is in Willow Glen, and didn’t seem to have any views beyond the neighborhood street.

We were able to find the place in Emerald Lake in about 3 minutes, and it definitely could use a big ol’ Burbed sloppy kiss, Of course it’s already pending.  This is the Real Bay Area we’re talking about!

130225-lakeview-redfin209 LAKEVIEW Way
Redwood City, CA 94062
$1,275,000

3 Beds
2 Baths
1,490 Sq. Ft.
$856 / Sq. Ft.
Built: 1948
Lot Size: 0.38 Acres
On Redfin: 207 days
Property Type: Detached Single Family
View: Mountains
County: San Mateo
Stories: 1
Community: Cordilleras Heights
MLS#: 81228879

Incredible opportunity in Emerald Hills. Originally three lots under two APN#’s (APN #057-031-480 and APN #057-031-049) which have been combined into one lot at approximately 25,150 SF. The value is in the land and the views of the surrounding hills with easy access to 280. Walk the site and let your imagination run wild. Dream big and build new or renovate. Plans are available for viewing.

130225-aol-wg-kitchenWe didn’t have the same success in finding the Willow Glen weedery.  This one is similar to it (Craftsman style bungalow, over 12,000 square foot lot, to be sold as-is) but we don’t think it’s the right house.  Can any enterprising Burbed readers find the house in the video? 

Update: House in video found by Burbed reader Chris. See end of this article for details and photos. We’ll also throw in a break as this is starting to get long, so click on through!

(more…)

Comments (10) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 5:01 am

January 30, 2013

Only $1.5 million in Portola Valley? No Way (side)

Today we have a real purty property in Portola Valley.  You know how we love expensive crap? Just crossing into this high-falutiin’ district will make your wallet squirm.  It’s expensive here even if the land doesn’t have a house.  So for this low (for PV) price, you know today’s feature will be good.  That is, if by “good” we mean something not so good.  Thanks very much to Burbed reader Petsmart Groomer for this find.

130129-redfin-wayside211 WAYSIDE Rd
Portola Valley, CA 94028
$1,499,000

3 Beds
2 Baths
2,340 Sq. Ft.
$641 / Sq. Ft.
Built: 1925
Lot Size: 0.41 Acres
On Redfin: 190 days
Status: Active
Property Type: Detached Single Family
Stories: 2
Community: Santa Maria/Russell Area
MLS#: 81227542
Style: Contemporary
View: Neighborhood
County: San Mateo

There are no remarks available.

Take it away, PG:

No wonder people outside the Bay Area think we are insane. Even with a Ferrari in the garage (picture #18), I can’t see the value in that one.

130129-wayside-kitchen130129-wayside-mbr130129-wayside-gym130129-wayside-garage

Sometimes, when life hands a real estate agent lemons, it’s best to keep one’s mouth shut. The eager buyer will bring the water, sugar and ice — then beg to be sold lemonade.

Comments (6) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 5:02 am

January 24, 2013

Value is in the land, and that value is $101.01 a square foot

How much should land in the Real Bay Area cost, when they aren’t making any more of it?  It’s hard to tell, as most of it is already covered with houses.  But today’s featured property, courtesy of Burbed reader Michael Boltonestater, may help us get an idea.  All together now: Mountain View, so close to Google!

130123-bryant-redfin344 BRYANT Ave
Mountain View, CA 94040
$4,400,000

3 Beds 
1 Baths 
1,216 Sq. Ft.
$3,618 / Sq. Ft.
Built: 1953 
Lot Size: 0.93 Acres 
On Redfin: 1 day
Status: Active
Property Type: Detached Single Family
Stories: 1
Community: Grant
MLS#: 81301915
Style: Traditional, Cottage/Bungalow
View: Neighborhood
County: Santa Clara

3BR/1BA WITH SPACIOUS KITCHEN OVERLOOKING YARD. FEATURES INCLUDE LIVING ROOM WITH REFINISHED HARDWOOD FLOORS, INSIDE LAUNDRY ROOM WITH PANTRY, & APPROVED PLANS FOR REMODEL/EXPANSION INTO SPACIOUS ATTIC AREA. POSSIBLE 4 LOT SUBDIVISION ON APPROXIMATELY 40,000SF LOT (. 93 ACRES). OUTSTANDING DEVELOPMENT OPTIONS WITH ACCESS FROM BRYANT FILOMENA COURT. IDEALLY LOCATED IN WELL ESTABLISHED NEIGHBORHOOD.

130123-bryant-streetviewYou know the agent is just phoning this one in to long list of OPPORTUNITY-minded investors. Otherwise, this house with all its expansion plans could have easily been featured instead of just an aerial shot.  Heck, Google even managed to find something once we realized the Redfin map was pointing to the wrong place (over at Beaumont and Apricot, and wonder why that happened, huh?)

Also look at this very odd cul-de-sac that abuts the property (right underneath the lot on the lower right).  Looks like it only culled half de sac.

130123-bryant-satellite

130123-bryant-view-from-beaumontSo, do you think land in Mountain View in a good zip without the good schools is worth a million for a quarter acre?  Can you make money as a developer when your land costs are that high?  New homes in nearby Enclave at Waverly Park development (the old Pumpkin Patch property) went for $2M+, but they built 53 big houses there.  Hard to get economies of scale when this lot will support four of them.

Perhaps the third time’s a charm for this huge investment opportunity. The buyer is sticking to this price regardless of which agent has the deal.

130123-bryant-history

Comments (9) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 5:04 am

January 17, 2013

50 Shades of Brown in Campbell

Decor is an important part of getting a house ready for sale.  Decor isn’t just furnishings, but wall treatments, art, floor materials, paint, and of course, tchotchkes.  Today’s featured find is furnished fully with an eye for consistency.  Thanks very much to Burbed reader wahnny for this crib in Campbell!

130116-audrey-redfin1105 AUDREY Ave
Campbell, CA 95008
$1,699,000

4 Beds 
3.5 Baths 
4,137 Sq. Ft.
$411 / Sq. Ft.
Built: 2005 
Lot Size: 0.25 Acres 
On Redfin: 7 days
Status: Active
Property Type: Detached Single Family
Stories: 2
County: Santa Clara
Style: Mediterranean
Community: Campbell
MLS#: 81300771

Regular Sale! An entertainer’s Spanish style dream home! This house has it all and you must see to appreciate the attention to detail in this custom beauty by Jay Andre Construction. This home has been totally rebuilt in 2005 with countless amenities. 2 spa/saunas, luxurious office, a gourmet kitchen w/ granite counter tops, tile, and hardwood floors. Too many to list! Open House 1/12 & 1/13 1-3PM

Over 4,000 square feet and the photographer remembered to water the driveway before taking pictures!  Either that or that moody sky had plenty of rain.  Now let’s hear from wahnny on why this house is so Special.

130116-audrey-officeRecently came across this lavishly adorned villa in the middla Campbell.

Almost every photo shows the house in various shades of brown (in keeping with the spanish colonial/western/desert theme, no doubt).  And talk about sophistication … in addition to the obligatory “kawlumns”, a variety of plumbing fixtures are included (see tour website for photos)!  Very elegans/earthy!

Location/neighbors aside, it’s probably worth at least the asking price!

130116-audrey-kawlums

At least worth the asking price?  Oh no, in the time since wahnny sent this listing in, we are sure that this property has probably increased at least 15% over the asking price.

After all, this is a Regular Sale!  And nothing says “dream home” like having to reassure buyers that the house isn’t an REO or short sale!

But what about the location and the neighbors?  With a quarter acre lot, why would you worry about neighbors?  You’ve got enough room to dig a moat and put in Rottweilers.

Although the next-door neighbor does seem to have more cars than driveway.  For $1.7 million one would expect the neighbors to collect something less intrusive yet more expensive, such as Facebook put options.

130116-audrey-streetview

Must see to appreciate!

Comments (9) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 5:05 am