August 1, 2011

A House Designed by an Artist

imageUnfortunately, the artist was influenced by Pablo Picasso.  Picasso was definitely a great artist, but he was no architect.

Today we are back in Campbell, with a house built after 1956, even!  Also there’s at least a 25% chance this house might not have been a meth lab.  But note that the listing doesn’t claim it’s meth-free, so no promises.

It also doesn’t claim there aren’t any Cubist painters in the garage, either.  I do wish these agents would be a little more helpful.

2947 DEL LOMA Dr, Campbell, CA 95008



BATHS: 2.5
SQ. FT.: 1,927
$/SQ. FT.: $363
LOT SIZE: 8,470 Sq. Ft.
PROPERTY TYPE: Detached Single Family
STYLE: Contemporary
VIEW: Neighborhood
COUNTY: Santa Clara
MLS#: 81127945
STATUS: Active
ON REDFIN: 21 days

Beautiful Spacious Campbell Home! Great price. 1927 SqFt/ 3 bedroom 2.5 bath. In ground pool & spa. 8400 sqft lot. Abundance of Natural Light! Bright and light open floor plan. Dual Pane windows. Large kitchen. formal dining. inside laundry. 2 balconies. atrium. a very cool floor plan.

Speaking of influential Spanish painters, no doubt this home designer had some influence, in turn, on the real estate photographer.  That is why we have these museum-quality prints, suitable for framing.  Or slashing.



Not only that, Captain Obvious is now working for Redfin!


Next to 85 freeway, you say?


That is so unfair to this house!  That row of trees should screen all that harmful pollution, noise, and fumes from the back yard.  And what the trees don’t catch, the swimming pool will!

Comments (11) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 5:50 am

March 8, 2011

Live in the 408? Maybe Not Anymore

Here is a little news that will have some of you quaking in your boots: You could lose your prestigious 408 area code.  Oh noez!

Santa Clara County’s 408 will spin off a new area code: 669

By Bruce Newman, SJ Mercury News
Posted: 03/07/2011 06:18:25 AM PST ; Updated: 03/07/2011 01:51:36 PM PST

There are 8 million phone numbers in the naked city. And no matter who you were calling in San Jose — or large swaths of the South Bay — for the past half century, you’ve had to dial this: area code 408.

But with the explosive proliferation of cell phones, wireless IP addresses and 4G-enabled baby pacifiers, the area code that has served San Jose since neighbors could listen in on each other’s party line calls is officially "exhausted."

That conclusion — arrived at by the Orwellian-sounding North American Numbering Plan Administration, or NANPA, in December — means some South Bay phone customers will start being assigned area code 669 by the end of next year.

Deciding who gets to hang onto their 408, and who becomes a 669, is the job of the California Public Utilities Commission, which will convene hearings March 16-18 in San Jose, Los Gatos and Morgan Hill to explain the switch.

Brie is 415, Velveeta is 408.  Columnist Herb Caen played the Area Code Game in the SF Chronicle, back in the early 1980s.  That was before all those other area codes bloomed in the little family tree above.  Now I guess Brie is 650, Velveeta is 209, Kraft American is 925, Vegan Gourmet Cheese Alternative is 831, and ten pound blocks of government cheese is 510.  Oh, 415 and 408?  415 is Myzithra.  408 is whatever you put in front of them, it’s not like they’re tasting it while they’re writing iOS device drivers.

The new area code will be arriving by October 2012.  So, who’s going to go to the CPUC meetings to complain about losing their Silicon Valley area code?  There are a couple of proposals, one of them where everyone keeps their numbers and new ones are assigned the 669 code (the overlay), and the other where there is an area code split.

Next up for this kind of torture will be area code 510, forecast to run out of available phone number blocks by 2016.  415 should follow a year later.  And bet you didn’t know this: a new area code should have kicked in ten years ago, but by pooling phone number blocks everyone has been able to keep their area code and their seven digit dialing.

Below is the map of the proposed 408-669 split.  It comes from the CPUC, who obviously don’t care much about geographical features such as city borders, streets, freeways, or rivers.  So good luck figuring out whether this map actually affects you.  Also note how they don’t commit to who gets to keep the coveted 408 identity, but I’ll tell you who: it’s the B People.


But don’t get too upset, after meeting with the telephone providers,the CPUC is inclined to go with the overlay plan anyway. And that means instead of turning Los Gatos, Campbell, Saratoga, and San Jose West into 69ers, instead the newbies are going to have that 669 area code.  It also means that you’ll have to dial eleven digits when making phone calls, even to next door, or for that matter to the fax machine in the same room.  Have fun reprogramming just about anything you have that calls phone numbers, and hoping that your alarm company and your cable company and anything else doesn’t forget to switch over to 1-408+number dialing.

And what this means for Burbed readers is that Silicon Valley area code jokes are going to get a lot more raunchy.  Have fun figuring out what kind of cheese they are.

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

February 18, 2011

Campbell house with exclusive mall privs


Beds: 3
Baths: 1.5
Sq. Ft.: 1,220
$/Sq. Ft.: $574
Lot Size: 9,842 Sq. Ft.
Property Type: Detached Single Family
Style: Ranch
Stories: 1
View: Neighborhood
Year Built: 1950
Community: Campbell
County: Santa Clara
MLS#: 81102039
Source: MLSListings
Status: ActiveThis listing is for sale and the sellers are accepting offers.
On Redfin: 15 days
Beautifully updated home in very desirable neighborhood. Many upgrades throughout. Forced air heating, central air conditioning, recently installed tile floors, windows, kitchen, baths, roof, electrical (200 amp service), you name it, it’s been done. Excellent location provides easy access to wonderful shopping, transportation, schools and leisure. In ground pool recently re-done and is beautiful.

More than anything else, I’m impressed with the photos that are attached to this listing. Let’s take a look!

The lead off photo:


Proof that this house exists near an intersection. Hey, that’s convenience. I just hate it when you buy
a house and it turns out it’s not near an intersection of any sort.


Look! A street! And it’s paved! That’s the sign of excellence! (although it’s a little strange how the right side of the street in this photo seems to be wet the entire distance. Huh?


Look! Buying this house even gives you rights to go to the prestigious and exclusive El Paseo de Saratoga and Westgate clubs!

Wow. Wow. Wow!

This house is definitely packed with value – and 200 amp service.

Comments (21) -- Posted by: burbed @ 5:23 am

December 14, 2010

Cheapest House in Campbell

Black Friday DEALS continue, and today we look into the always-on-the-go cutting-edge City of Campbell.  Unfortunately,searching for inexpensive houses in “Campbell” doesn’t necessarily give you inexpensive houses in Campbell. You have to enter the actual zip code, or you’ll end up with listings in San Jose, and not even San Jose next to Campbell

Here at Burbed, when we bring you a DEAL, it’s a DEAL in the place we say it’s in.  It might be a crapbox, but it’s a crapbox in the right location, location, location!

108 E Latimer Ave, Campbell, CA 95008

image Beds: 2
Baths: 1
Sq. Ft.: 1,108
$/Sq. Ft.: $442
Lot Size: 9,100 Sq. Ft.
Property Type: Detached Single Family
Stories: 2
Year Built: 1947
Community: Campbell
County: Santa Clara
MLS#: 81050161
Source: MLSListings
Status: Active
On Redfin: 57 days

Spacious and bright 2 bedroom and 1 bath, single story home in an excellent Campbell location. Large Lot zoned for multi residential 2 or 3 units, check with city for use. Additional area at the back of the house (Permit unknown). Great location, easy access to all major freeways, close to schools, parks and shoppings. Must See Now!

image The value is definitely in the land for this 9100 sf lot, or maybe in the shoppings, or in that mysterious permit unknown additional area at the back of the house.  Any idea just what it is at the back of the house?  My money’s on meth lab.  Check with city for use.

But when you buy a property, you don’t just buy the house and any mysterious permit-free structures in the back.  You’re also buying into a community, so let’s take in the bigger picture.

The possibilities are endless what you could do with this place.  Take a look at all the land-use options in the neighborhood!


imageCondos, triplex, McMansions, Montessori school?  How about all four?  We weren’t kidding about the value being in the land, because it sure isn’t in the house.  Unless this home photography wins some kind of high-falutin’ artsy-fartsy award.

I tell you, you can’t make up stuff like an agent putting this snap on their real estate website.  This is a photo that says, “Of course this is a DEAL, if it weren’t, don’t you think I’d check if the picture were in focus, properly exposed and actually showed the room in question?” 

And speaking of DEAL, look at all the instant equity you’ll get if you buy NOW:


Not too many properties do as good a job as this one in showing the history of the last real estate bubble.  Looks like the 2007 sellers nailed it perfectly.  Think you can time the market just as well?  Does it matter?  This is a DEAL!  Operators are standing by, buy, bye!

Comments (9) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 5:11 am

August 7, 2010

The Joy of Open Houses

Today’s item was sent in by burbed reader Pralay.  Wow, this is disturbing!  Thanks for making sure we’ll never look at an open house the same way again!

Thieves targeting open house events in the West Valley

By Chris Vongsarath

Posted: 08/04/2010 04:42:52 PM PDT
Updated: 08/05/2010 08:02:29 PM PDT

It seems thieves in the West Valley are using houses on the market as a marketplace to do their own brand of shopping.

Reports are starting to circulate in the real estate community about people attending open house events and walking off with more than the listing price. The crime usually involves an individual or group of people pretending to be interested in the home and then stealing valuables when nobody’s looking.

Police departments are starting to hear more about the crimes recently, but some real estate agents say they have been taking place for several months. The most recent case happened on Walnut Drive in Campbell last weekend and resulted in an arrest, thanks to the homeowners being alerted prior to the open house event.

"In all my years, I’ve never had anything ever stolen or taken," said Derek Deaton, a Realtor with more than 20 years of experience.

The article goes on to describe some alert Campbell homeowners who staked out their own property during an open house and nabbed themselves a repeat thief.  They caught a woman red-handed who was helping herself to perfume and vitamin supplements.  Vitamin supplements?  Guess that’s what’s worth stealing in Campbell.

I’ve heard of attending open houses for the free cookies, but this is a little too much.  Have you any experience with either having something taken during an open house, or actually seeing a theft while attending one?

Comments (12) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 5:02 am

July 11, 2010

County Grand Jury Recommends School District Consolidation. Expect Massive Migration to Palo Alto.

What puts a house in rather than out of the Real Bay Area (RBA)?  A damned good school district.  Now watch some meddlesome busybodies try and ruin everything!

Consolidate Santa Clara County school districts to save millions, grand jury recommends


By Sharon Noguchi

Posted: 07/04/2010 07:15:28 PM PDT
Updated: 07/04/2010 10:24:07 PM PDT

When budgets are tight, businesses often consolidate — so why not school districts?

After all, Santa Clara County school districts are a hodgepodge of large and tiny agencies, each with its own administration, and with century-old boundaries that randomly join disparate regions while dividing other communities. Some superintendents oversee 25,000 students, while others supervise only a few hundred.

So the Santa Clara County civil grand jury has recommended unifying and consolidating the county’s 31 school districts, which it projects could save $51 million annually.

District officials dispute the estimated savings, and question the benefits. In past decades, similar suggestion have been shunned as politically implausible. Why should this time be any different? For one, schools are facing unprecedented cuts to their budgets now.

The grand jury released two reports on June 24th: “Achieving School District Efficiency through Consolidation” and “Looking at Policies Our Schools Use to Find and Place Employees.”  These thrilling potboilers describe that “while the school districts in Santa Clara County are doing well in all areas, there are redundant administrative functions that can be made more cost effective through school district  consolidation.”  I tell you, I couldn’t put it down!

By merging elementary and high school districts that share attendance areas, the county’s 31 distinct school districts could be reduced to 16, unless the county actually has 34 districts (per 2008-09 Grand Jury report “Who Really Benefits from Education Dollars? (Hint: It’s Not the Students)“).  That’s the fun of an official report; you just never know what alternate facts could emerge!  Last year’s report had six findings and suggested actions, and it’s number 6 that must have led to this year’s threat to school administrators:

Finding 6

The operation of 34 K–12 school districts and four (4) community college districts
creates excessively high management and administrative costs. Five K-12 school
districts have excessively high Superintendent costs per student which is reflective of
the district’s having only one or two schools.

Recommendation 6

A consolidation of districts should be considered to reduce the numbers and costs of
Superintendents/Chancellors, Boards of Trustees, administrative staff and overhead.

One piece of good news for administrators and board members is the grand jury didn’t recommend all 31 school districts be rolled up into one countywide nightmare like Los Angeles Unified.  Instead, they selected feeder elementary districts that could be merged with high school districts, creating “Unified School Districts” that serve the same boundaries.  These are the four “lucky” high school districts and corresponding K-8 districts singled out:

  • Campbell Union HSD with Burbank SD, Cambrian SD, Campbell USD, Moreland USD and Union ESD
  • Fremont Union HSD with Cupertino USD and Sunnyvale SD
  • Los Gatos-Saratoga HSD with Lakeside JSD, Loma Prieta JSD, Los Gatos USD and Saratoga USD
  • Mountain View-Los Altos HSD with Los Altos SD and Mountain View-Whisman SD

imageThe civil grand jury’s reasoning is that unified school districts save money and can operate more efficiently than smaller districts with just a few schools.  The grand jury holds up these unified districts in Santa Clara County to support the concept: Gilroy, Morgan Hill, Milpitas, Palo Alto, San Jose, and Santa Clara.  And their gold standard of the benefits of school district unification is last year’s formation of Twin Rivers Unified.  In Sacramento.  Puh-leeeeeze!

Are they seriously suggesting that RBA cities such as Saratoga, Cupertino and Los Altos should emulate mediocrities such as Milpitas and Morgan Hill?  Seriously?  The only RBA city on the Unified list is Palo Alto, and they’re so Special none of the regular rules apply anyway.

Can you see parents who paid the RBA premium to live in Los Gatos wanting to share a school district with the hillbillies of Lakeside?  Or the families who paid the big bucks to live south of Fremont Avenue now finding themselves sharing a school district with North Sunnyvalers?  Wouldn’t every Los Altan sooner pull their kids out of public school than consort with those troublemakers from Latham Street?

image Obviously I’m not going to comment about the proposed Campbell Unified District, because they aren’t in the RBA so nobody much cares.  The Grand Jury also wants to merge four East San Jose school districts into two union districts, and even fewer burbed readers would ask. (Berryessa + Orchard, Alum Rock + Mt. Pleasant, if you insist.  You’re welcome.)  All 21 school districts suggested for consolidation have 90 days to respond to the civil grand jury, and expect the replies to be even more thrilling reading.

Now, some of these recommendations make sense.  There is only one school in Lakeside, Luther Burbank and Orchard School Districts.  One-school districts are clearly wasteful, and the Grand Jury has already noted criminal behavior in Burbank SD.  But some of the proposed unified districts will be much, much larger than others.  The proposed Mountain View-Los Altos Unified would have 21 schools, and the proposed Los Gatos-Saratoga Unified, 14.  But both proposed Campbell and Fremont Unifieds would have 41 schools each, which isn’t much smaller than San Jose Unified’s 43.  All the other current Unified Districts (which the Grand Jury report specifies as an ideal model) have between 14-24 schools.

41 schools?  Are they serious?  Does this fit the reasoning behind “Five K-12 school districts have excessively high Superintendent costs per student which is reflective of the district’s having only one or two schools”?  Cupertino USD, a K-8 district, already has 25 schools, which is more than all but one existing SC County unified district.  This is not a school district with excessively high costs, the complaint of the 2009 report.  This is a district that manages to produce perfect API test scores despite below-average funding.  But someone took the idea of merging feeder schools into high school districts and ran all the way to Twin Rivers Unified with it.

image At a certain point, large school districts lose the ability to respond to parental concerns, and nobody could call a 41 school unified district anything but large.  Effective and responsive school districts are exactly what parents expect when they spend the big bucks to buy in the RBA.  So recognize this plan for what it is: a recipe to remove Cupertino from the RBA forever. 

It’s clearly a plot by Palo Alto real estate agents.

Comments (99) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 5:01 am

July 2, 2010

In Silicon Valley, House Dreams You!

Remember Hazelwood Avenue in Campbell?  Somebody’s been dreaming about it!

1133 Hazelwood Ave, Campbell, CA 95008


SQ. FT.: 808
$/SQ. FT.: $526
LOT SIZE: 10,200 Sq. Ft.
PROPERTY TYPE: Detached Single Family
COUNTY: Santa Clara
MLS#: 80933914
STATUS: Active
ON REDFIN: 351 days


Plans for a 4400 square foot house!  That would be great, if only somebody wanted a ginormous house in Campbell.

Most dream houses are built in a more Real Bay Area location, either close to something important and expensive (Stanford University, Foothills Park, Sunnyvale Fry’s) or far away from everybody else.  The plans might be approved, but this may not be the best place for them.  So for now, let’s see what’s actually at 1133 Hazelwood instead of potentially, where potentially means after you pay buckets of money to contractors who won’t show up.

Rather than a 4400 sf house of the sellers’ unfulfilled dreams, this is what you get for $425,000:


Awww, it’s too shy to come out and pose!  This little wallflower was still the house of somebody’s dreams, when they listed this place for $890K.  Yes, I said $890,000.  In 2008.  And it was the house of the current sellers’ dreams when they got $140K of instant equity by paying $750K for it, 3 months later.  Now it can be the house of your dreams for $425K, which includes $465K of instant equity.  Wow! That’s more than the house is selling for!  That means this house is better than FREE! Plus it includes the APPROVED plans for the house of the seller’s dreams!  Guess the seller woke up, smelled the coffee, and said “Oh my god I live here!”

One advantage of a two-story house is you get to spy on your neighbors’ yards!  Let’s take an advance peek at the great views you’ll have if you build the house of someone else’s dreams.


Oooh, wonder what’s going on with those neighbors on the right!  They look like some fun folks!  Let’s meet them!


Hey, what do you want for $425,000?  Remember yesterday’s house?  Location, location, location: $600K teardown less than a block from a freeway?  That is not a problem with today’s featured property!  No freeways in any direction for miles!  Nothing but… lots and lots of other houses.


And it’s a pretty safe bet that most of the others cost way more than $425,000!  At least they will if you all keep dreaming! Nighty-night!

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

March 1, 2010

If you like columns, you’ll like this Campbell house

Beds: 5
Baths: 2
Sq. Ft.: 1,900
$/Sq. Ft.: $276
Lot Size: 6,720 Sq. Ft.
Property Type: Detached Single Family
Stories: 2
View: Neighborhood
Year Built: 1961
Community: Campbell
County: Santa Clara
MLS#: 80949841
Source: MLSListings
Status: Active This listing is for sale and the sellers are accepting offers.
On Redfin: 119 days
Great Oppertunity to own a spacious home in quite neighborhood. Main level has 3 bed, 1 bath, living room and seperate dinning. Basement: lower level has 2 bedrooms, 1 bath plus extra family room space. dual pane windows. Large yard with space for boat/RV

Wow… check out how classy those columns make this house look. It almost hides the fact that the wall might be coming apart. But as we all know, it’s all about curb appeal!

Who lives there? The pope? The president? Nope… it could be you!

And look! It’s even got bedrooms in the basement! Just look at the funky window! Great for guests or for renting out!

And let’s check out that back yard:


Hm. Not sure what’s going on there, but that is certainly pretty funky. Maybe someone is building a skateboard park there?

Not that it matters – those columns on the front simply make this house an amazing buy in Campbell!

Comments (18) -- Posted by: burbed @ 5:50 am

February 24, 2010

Campbell, the Switzerland of the Bay Area

The new hot spot in Silicon Valley? That’s right, Campbell!


Along the cul-de-sacs that eddy out of Cambrian Drive, a civil war is being fought on battlefields with names like Sweetbriar and Stonehurst, where residents are waging a determined campaign to get into what they are certain is Silicon Valley’s most desirable dwelling destination.

San Jose’s city limit is only a few hundred yards away, but that’s not the velvet rope they’re trying to slip under. These people are attempting to drive a stake through the municipal heart of the Bay Area’s biggest city, planting yard signs that rise like middle fingers to declare: “We’re For Campbell Annexation.”

That’s right, Campbell. These days everybody wants to be in Campbell.

“To me, it’s more prestigious to say we’re in Campbell,” explained Lisa Dow, a real estate agent who lives in this unincorporated pocket of Santa Clara County that wants no part of San Jose. “Campbell is kind of the hip place now. Affordably hip.”

With the city’s sixth hotel — a 162-room Courtyard by Marriott on Creekside Way — opening Thursday, and with businesses such as Katie Bloom’s Irish Pub and Chacho’s Mexican restaurant moving to its downtown shopping district from San Jose, Campbell is viewed by some of its most recent transplants as the “anti-San Jose.”

Campbell sits comfortably at the hub of San Jose, Los Gatos and Saratoga, much as Switzerland forms a beautiful bull’s-eye amid France, Germany and Austria. According to Courtyard general manager Michael McClintock, Marriott picked Campbell in part because its guests can step out the door and board a light-rail train to HP Pavilion for a Sharks game, or be at eBay’s headquarters in a matter of minutes. Campbell is in the middle of everything.

“People used to say we were the next Los Gatos,” said Low. “They don’t say that anymore.” Not long ago, the merchants association from Los Gatos — with its famously bustling little downtown — sought advice on how to generate foot traffic from Campbell.

Natasha for this find!

Wow! Who knew that Campbell was the Bay Area’s Switzerland! Or that it was such a hip and happening place! Heck, it’s going to be the NEXT Los Gatos. THE NEXT LOS GATOS! Wow!

Let’s just say that NY and Washington DC had best be shaking in their boots. With San Francisco, Palo Alto, Cupertino, and now Campbell – the Bay Area is fast becoming the place to be in America.

What this really means is that if you haven’t bought a place in Campbell yet, you really should because soon it will be too late and you’ll be priced out forever.

Let’s have a vote: which store will next move into the Pruneyard?

1. Tiffany’s?
2. Nordstrom’s?
3. Nieman Marcus?
4. Apple Store?
5. A Wolfgang Puck restaurant?

Comments (26) -- Posted by: burbed @ 5:45 am

January 20, 2010

Campbell house that’s zoned “PD”

101 S 4TH St Campbell, CA 95008



Beds: 2
Baths: 1
Sq. Ft.: 1,012
$/Sq. Ft.: $585
Lot Size: 9,200 Sq. Ft.
Property Type: Detached Single Family
Style: Traditional, Cottage/Bungalow
Stories: 1
Year Built: 1945
Community: Campbell
County: Santa Clara
MLS#: 80940201
Source: MLSListings
Status: Active This listing is for sale and the sellers are accepting offers.
On Redfin: 128 days
Main value is in the land – house is livable – needs updating. Property is zoned "PD". Please see MLS #80937293 for adjacent property for sale (seperate listing and broker). Property to be sold "as is". Very close to downtown Campbell – short walk.

Another curious Campbell listing! This one is zoned “PD” which means planned development.

This is the kind of house that Silicon Valley entrepreneurs will love – it’s an opportunity to make a ton of money.

So perhaps this is the plan, you buy this house, then you wait for them to build a Gucci on top of it. BOOM. You’ve got money! Oh wait… there’s a Gucci in Santana Row already.

Or… you buy this house, then you wait for them to build Four Seasons Campbell on it. BOOM!

Or, I suppose you could buy this house and build a 2000 sqft house on it for another $600,000 and then flip it for $2 million – because by then Campbell will be the new hot and happening place. Hey that’s not too shabby!

Go for it, entrepreneur! Make this opportunity your own!

Comments (4) -- Posted by: burbed @ 5:12 am