Burbed would like to thank Richard for his gracious $10 donation.
Burbed would like to thank Richard for his gracious $10 donation.
Swine flu. How will it impact the housing market in the Real Bay Area?
Will it cause prices to soar, or prices to hold steady?
In favor of soaring prices:
1. The Real Bay Area is special. Living there will increase your immune system. Therefore, it will become more desirable.
2. The Real Bay Area is further away from Mexico.
3. The Real Bay Area is full of rich people, which means that people can afford great healthcare coverage, N99 masks, etc. Thus, you will not be likely to be around sick people.
In favor of prices holding steady:
Debate resolved. Do you agree?
A while back, Burbed reader DreamT made this comment:
Can you park a space shuttle, a fire truck, or a blimp in this Fremont house? | SF Bay Area Home Price and Mortgage Insanity Blog – Burbed.com
April 16th, 2009 at 11:46 pm
Ask a $25k earner his social strata and he’ll say he’s middle class. Ask a $250k earner and he’ll also say he’s middle class. In fact, the $250k earner points out he cannot afford a house “in the Silicon Valley”
The differences are where you want to see them. They’re in the eye of the beholder, and speak about who you are rather than what you see. The concept of “blue” versus “white” collar, originally meaningful when you had full segregation of management vs floor workers, closed door offices, different clothing, different “villages” – it never applied as little as in recent times’ Silicon Valley. You say so yourself by pointing out they are only divided by a street that’s not even an Expressway. What segregates people in the bay area is their nationality or ethnicity, and the timing of their arrival in the bay area, rather than their income, education or even job. The parents of fellow Engineers I worked with, grew up and still live in Palo Alto. They were what you’ll call blue collar and they still live in your neighbors.
As anon asks, what makes you a white collar? Your job? No, if you live in a dirt cheap place littered with pickup trucks, right? So, your education? Same thing. Your lifestyle and house location? No, since you could have a traditional blue collar job since the 70s and live comfortably in Saratoga. So, moving up to Palo Alto and buying a Porsche makes you a white collar family, suddenly? Is that what you’re reduced to assert?
Which brings up some interesting questions. What does it mean to be blue collar or white collar in Silicon Valley? Does it even apply?
Similarly, what is working class in Silicon Valley? What is middle class? What is professional class?
Here’s what the Mayor of San Jose had to say:
Wealth-Less Effect: Earning Well, Feeling Otherwise
Proposed Tax Increases on Six-Figure Earners Highlight Mounting Costs of Living — and the Relativity of Prosperity
San Jose, Calif., Mayor Chuck Reed calls a family living in Silicon Valley earning $250,000 “upper working class.” That is about what two engineers working at a technology firm can expect to make, but “a family earning $250,000 a year can’t buy a home in Silicon Valley,” he said.
James Duran owns a human-resources company in Silicon Valley and is president of the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce in California. He supported Mr. Obama, but is worried about the tax proposals. He has laid off some employees in recent months and has been wondering how he can fund an extension of those workers’ health-care benefits.
Mr. Duran said he and his wife earn about $400,000 annually, but “I’m barely getting by.” They have high property and state taxes, as well as college tuition and savings to cover. “I’m an Obama man, but this side of him is a difficult pill for me,” he said.
Is $400,000 for a 4 person family middle class in Silicon Valley? Is that white collar?
It sort of makes sense… after all, we’re a very very very special place with an mix of smart people that’s impossible to find anywhere else.
What class are you?
Has the Silicon Valley housing market reached a bottom?
No one knows for sure, but figures released Thursday provide some tantalizing clues.
More Silicon Valley homes changed hands last month than in March 2008; it was the fourth consecutive month the county’s sales have outpaced their prior-year levels. And after months of big declines, the median price of the houses sold hovered in the low $400,000s for a third month in a row.
“What we are seeing is signs you would expect to see prior to prices leveling off,” said Andrew LePage of MDA DataQuick, a real estate information firm that released March Bay Area home sales figures Thursday. However, “given all the different countercurrents and all the uncertainty out there, you don’t want to point to three months and say, ‘Ah, we’ve hit bottom.’ “
Although Pralay sent this in a week ago, I figured I’d post it today so that people could spend some more time reflecting on this news, before commenting on it.
Personally, I know from the NAR radio ad (the guy digging, who hits a sprinkler) that you can’t find the bottom. It’s impossible.
But still, this is great news. Now, I might have been too optimistic last year with my predictions, but would I be so off to say that we can expect a healthy 9% YoY appreciationg in 2010? Then back to 15% by 2012 when green tech is in full swing?
Mountain View Voice : Home sales way down, but prices remain high
The median price of a single-family home in Mountain View remained just over $1 million in the first quarter of 2009, despite the fact that half as many were sold compared to the same period last year, according to the local Realtors’ association.
The trend is the reverse of what’s been reported in Santa Clara County overall, where sales have reached new heights in some areas as the county median for previously owned, single-family homes dropped from $716,500 in February 2008 to $421,000 in February 2009.
The Silicon Valley Association of Realtors reports that the median price of a single-family home in Mountain View was at $1,015,037 in the first quarter of 2009, down just slightly from $1,050,000 in the first quarter of 2008 and up from $946,500 in the first quarter of 2007.
Local median condo prices declined much farther, however, going from $645,000 in the first quarter of 2008 to $569,000 in the first quarter of 2009. That number is still higher than the $559,750 median reported in the first quarter of 2007.
Mountain View home sales are down overall: Only 33 condos and 20 single-family homes were sold in 2009′s first quarter, compared to 55 condos and 47 single-family homes in the same period last year.
City officials report that there were 40 foreclosures in Mountain View in 2008.
Blah blah blah. The most important part is to observe that the price of single family homes in Mountain View remains over $1 million.
If that doesn’t say Real Bay Area… I don’t know what does.
Let’s face it, this economic downturn has been painful in other areas, like Sunnyvale – but might I be so bold as to predict that the median will be $1.1 by the end of this year?
American Journeys – Searching for Silicon Valley; a Place and a State of Mind – NYTimes.com
That diversity is immediately apparent almost anywhere in Silicon Valley. You can see it on Castro Street in Mountain View, dotted with a proliferation of ethnic restaurants. Elsewhere, you can turn down a street seemingly at random and find the shop signs are all in Chinese or Spanish or Vietnamese.
Standout restaurants include La Costeña, a hole-in-the-wall grocery in Mountain View that has great burritos (and a Guinness World Record claim for making the largest), and Evvia in Palo Alto, which serves a spectacular version of arnisia paidakia, or lamb chops.
Congratulations to Silicon Valley for being featured in the New York Times travel section today.
In addition to our powerhouse tech/green tech industries, we now have a booming tourism industry.
I hope you’re having a great Friday, because I am! The stars are aligned for a major take off in Real Estate as more foreigners will soon be trying to snatch up vacation homes in Cupertino, Palo Alto, Mountain View, and other Real Bay Area cities. Who needs Cannes when you can have Campbell!
www.sfexaminer.com >> Local News
Companies including Pacific Gas & Electric Co., bankrupt law firm Heller Ehrman and health care provider Blue Shield of California already put 553,825 square feet of office space on the market in the first three months of this year, according to Colliers.
The available space will also soon increase as companies that have said they are putting offices on the market pack up, including Charles Schwab Corp., the largest independent U.S. brokerage by client assets, and Macy’s, the second-biggest department-store chain.
Charles Schwab is shedding 375,000 square feet at 120 Kearny St., and Macy’s is vacating 153,000 square feet at 22 Fourth St., Colliers said.
More layoffs appear to be on the horizon, with almost half of the largest companies in the Bay Area saying they plan to cut staff in the next six months, said John Grubb, spokesman for the Bay Area Council, which represents the region’s biggest employers, including
Chevron Corp., Google Inc., Yahoo Inc., Safeway Inc. and Wells Fargo & Co.
About 279,000 people in the region are looking for work, almost double the number from a year ago, Grubb said.
Yeesh. More doom and gloom from the ol’ main street media.
Hey San Francisco, with this kind of news… you might be at risk for being cut from the Real Bay Area.
But, there’s a silver lining:
The drop in rental prices is not just hitting the Bay Area. Rising unemployment and lower consumer spending are also cutting commercial rents in New York. First-quarter Manhattan office rents fell the most in at least 25 years, closely held commercial property broker Cushman & Wakefield Inc. said in a report.
Muhahahaha…. take that Manhattan! Take that!
Thanks to Burbed reader Herve for making this:
You know you’d buy it if it were really available!
Unfortunately though, this is not the highest:
The city of Chicago has the highest total sales tax of all major U.S. cities. It is also one of the most complex. 10.25% is levied on all non-perishable goods purchased, while 2% is levied on qualifying food, drugs, medicines and medical appliances. The Illinois Department of Revenue collects a 3% Chicago Soft Drink Tax and a 1% Metropolitan Pier and Exposition Authority (MPEA) “Food and Beverage Tax”, on prepared food and beverage purchases in the downtown area (These “downtown” boundaries are: Surf Street on the north, Ashland Avenue on the west, Stevenson Expressway (I-55) on the south, & Lake Michigan on the east. Furthermore, O’Hare and Midway airports also fall under the 1% MPEA tax district). In addition, the Chicago Department of Revenue collects additional sales taxes on items such as fountain drinks, bottled water, liquor, and cigarettes.
Damn you Chicago! Damn you and your crazy pizzas.
Well, at least we beat NY! Did you know this?
There is no New York City sales tax imposed on the purchase of clothing and footwear regardless of the amount. As of September 1, 2007, New York State has eliminated sales tax on all clothing and shoes if the single item is priced under $110.
While we haven’t beaten Manhattan (YET) in highest housing prices, we’re doing a great job on the tax front.
Great work everyone. I’m very proud today to be a Californian Bay Arean!
Many homes here have returned to the realm of reasonable prices, with the median sale price hovering below $300,000. That means that even people with incomes around the Bay Area’s median of $80,000 or so can find properties within their price range.
– Pricing. The Bay Area reached a peak median sales price of $720,000 in spring 2007. In February, the median was $295,000. That doesn’t mean that all homes lost half their value – although many did see appreciation erode significantly – but it does show a major shift in the composition of homes being sold.
The first-time buyers
Cori Belew, 27, teacher; Dillon Westbrook, 27, masonry contractor
House: 3 bedrooms and bonus room, 1,228 square feet, Oakland
Previous price: $514,909 in November 2006
Mortgage: FHA loan at 5%; Monthly payments, about $1,900
Is it any wonder why newspapers are going out of business? Those are not in the Real Bay Area.
What we need is a focus on the Real Bay Area.
Luckily, sites like Movoto have the real scoop:
The median house price in Mountain View is $800,000, with an average of 490 properties sold a year. Mountain View has a population of 70,000 residents, with a mean household income is $69,000. The headquarters of Google, MSN/XBOX, and the NASA Ames Research Center are just a few of the companies that fuel the technological production of Mountain View, working side by side with major telecommunications offices such as Nokia and WebTV. A benefit of being located so centrally within Silicon Valley, Mountain View will be the first city in the country to be provided with complete wireless internet access, creating a gateway between this progressive town and the online world. Keeping up with technological advancement is Mountain View’s impressive educational record: Mountain View High School scored the highest possible Academic Performance Index.
Phew. I feel better already.
Let’s get some real journalism out there!