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.

image

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






January 12, 2011

Most Expensive Sale 2010 – Santa Clara County

Yesterday we showcased the most expensive sale last year in San Mateo County, a $15M property in Woodside.  Can Santa Clara beat that?  Yes we can! But only if we count the sale of a mobile home park.  If we want to stick to single-family houses, the answer is NO WAY, SAN JOSE.

16331 Matilija Dr, Los Gatos, CA 95030

Sold on 06/15/2010: $10,000,000

<img missing due to burbed’s terrible admin skills. working on restoring>

BEDS: 6
BATHS: 7.5
FINISHED SQFT: 11,616
UNFINISHED SQFT: 3,075
TOTAL SQFT: 14,691
FLOORS: 2
LOT SIZE: 82,328
STYLE: Single Family Residential
YEAR BUILT: 2001
YEAR RENOVATED: 2001
COUNTY: Santa Clara County
APN: 51030027
LAST UPDATED: August 26, 2010

<img missing due to burbed’s terrible admin skills. working on restoring>

Alas, the original sales description and images are gone.  But check this out.  Looks like the asking price on this megamansion was once $14,900,000.  And it has the agent’s description (even if the pictures are gone), so let’s enjoy what they were so eager to hide:

MEDITERRANEAN INSPIRED VILLA BY MEHUS CONSTR-NEARLY 2 AC OF FORMAL HILLTOP LAWNS,TERRACES&COURTYARDS-BELOW REPLACEMENT COST-TRUE GRAND ESTATE VIEWS FROM SF TO SO. VALLEY-ARTESIAN WORKMANSHIP-NOTHING SPARRED-FINEST QUALITY-MUST SEE

Wow.  Artesian workmanship.  So there should be deep and narrow wells all over the property – or the construction crew came from France. And nothing was sparred.  Glad they weren’t fighting while installing all those tiles on the roof.  Although if the house was really “below replacement cost” at $14.9M, there was probably a lot of fighting when it sold for ten million with that 33% haircut.

Also I’m going to call shenanigans on “below replacement cost,” since tax records say additions are valued at $5.2 million. This house is ten years old, not a hundred. Maybe you can convert a garage into a couple of bedrooms without anyone noticing (until you try to sell the place), but there’s no way the FB put up a quarter acre worth of house and “forgot” to file construction permits.  That addition value shouldn’t be too far out of line with actual building costs.

If we ranked the homes on Sunday’s Zillow list by how much of a discount off original asking price they sold for, this Los Gatos hyperhouse that takes up more floor area than some strip malls would be tied for fifth place.  No question about it, Los Gatos has an insanely overpriced, oversized home smacked down by market forces.  Booyah!

Comments (13) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 5:05 am

December 30, 2010

BIG Clearance Sale – Los Gatos

When the banks say everything must go, they really mean everything, including this big, big, big deal.  Thanks to Burbed reader nomadic for today’s amazing offer.

18157 Wagner Rd, Los Gatos, CA 95032
$7,695,000

image

Beds: 5
Baths: 6
Sq. Ft.: 7,035
$/Sq. Ft.: $1,094
Lot Size: 25 Acres
Property Type: Detached Single Family
Style: Contemporary, Mediterranean
Stories: 2
View: Green Belt, Mountains, Canyon, Neighborhood, Valley, City Lights
Year Built: 1999
Community: Los Gatos/Monte Sereno
County: Santa Clara
MLS#: 81051721
Source: MLSListings
Status: Active
On Redfin: 62 days

COMPLETELY REMODELED TUSCAN ESTATE ON 25 SPECTACULAR VIEW ACRES * SEPARATE 10 ACRE PARCEL IS IDEAL TO BUILD A SECOND ESTATE OR VINEYARD * EXQUISITE DETAILS INCLUDE NEW EXTERIOR FINISHES, PLASTER WALLS, INFINITY EDGED POOL, NEW LUSH LANDSCAPING, NEW DESIGNER BATHROOMS, AND STUNNING HARDWOOD & TRAVERTINE FLOORING * MINUTES TO DOWNTOWN & HWY 85 * DISTINGUISHED LOS GATOS SCHOOLS * OVER 7,035 SQFT OF LUXURY & PRIVACY

Such a BIG deal the agent put everything in CAPITAL LETTERS so you can pick up his URGENCY.  HURRY, HURRY, HURRY, it’s only been listed 62 days.

imageHere’s what nomadic had to say about this listing:

Look at the confusing history on this house.  The old listings bounce between 15 and 25 acres.  There are two parcels apparently, but with the foreclosures I’m surprised they would have continued to be owned by the same entity.  The prices are all over the place too.

image Wait, multiple foreclosures?  One at $3,367,000 and another at $4,155,534, within two weeks of each other?  Plus four sales within two months during the bubble, between an individual, a relative, a limited liability corporation, and a living trust (and that’s before the banks got involved)?  Is it a house or is it a hot potato?  Don’t know, but it’s (they’ve?) been listed on MLS no less than fourteen times since it was built eleven years ago.

image

 

The listing and sales record is so long it has 42 entries in it.  Head over to Redfin and take it all in there.

One great thing about buying this house: You will definitely get to decide what color you want your walls painted.  Is there anything sadder than a ginormous custom home full of abandoned equipment because the owner ran out of money?  There’s definitely a story here, but you don’t need to hear it.  You just need to take this property off the bank’s books cheap, and pick out some paint.

Comments (17) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 4:57 am

December 18, 2010

They’re Baaaaaaaaack!

The Cheapest House In… series is so popular, what could be more appropriate than bringing back another one? That other perennial Burbed series, Most Expensive Zip Codes: RBA Edition!  Well, what indeed, other than some of the commenters saying they hated it?  But that’s okay.  That was just one or two hot-heads.  We know all the rest of you can’t wait to find out when San Jose makes an appearance on that list!

If you missed the previous entries in the ZIP code series, feel free to check them out.  The 500 most expensive zips were chosen by Forbes magazine, working with Altos Research’s data.  All the mistakes were entirely Forbes’, of course.  We just take credit for finding them.

And now, Burbed proudly presents (okay, not so proudly, we did get some Debbie Downers who moaned about this) The Most Expensive Zip Codes in the RBA: The Six Digit Edition.

#201 – 94506 Danville

Median Home Price: $1,072,360
Median Price Change: NA
Average Days On Market: 96
Inventory: 84 properties
Median Household Income: $142,459
Ignored Because: In East Bay, plus Forbes can’t figure out where Danville actually is.  Remember that expensive Danville zip here at #59?  That was actually Pleasanton.

#202 – 93924 Carmel Valley

Median Home Price: $1,064,710
Median Price Change: 9%
Average Days On Market: 206
Inventory: 101 properties
Median Household Income: $71,053
Ignored Because: Another gazillion square mile zip full of nothing.

image#211 – 95014 Cupertino

Median Home Price: $1,042,581
Median Price Change: -4%
Average Days On Market: 69
Inventory: 155 properties
Median Household Income: $100,020
 
Finally,, a place we can call home; home to Apple, home to Hewlett-Packard – oops, not any more! But it is home to the world-famous Cupertino Union School District, where parents raised two million dollars to keep teachers from losing their jobs another year.  So if you move in, you know you’ll be hit up for even more next year!

The median price is still over a million, but not for long!  At least it has an eight in it.

image #212 – 94010 Burlingame

Median Home Price: $1,035,952
Median Price Change: -25%
Average Days On Market: 88
Inventory: 122 properties
Median Household Income: $82,188

Conveniently located at the nexus of US 101 and SFO, Burlingame has many advantages which I’ll leave to the imagination.  Just as Los Altos Hills has Los Altos pulling down the averages, Hillsborough will always have Burlingame.  And why not, when they share the same ZIP code?  And in an amazing coincidence, they also share the same median income.

Anyone who thinks the typical Hillsborough household income is $82K when the houses sell for $2.9 million, raise your polo mallet.

image #220 – 94115 San Francisco

Median Home Price: $1,018,459
Median Price Change: -21%
Average Days On Market: 93
Inventory: 99 properties
Median Household Income: $54,879

You ever see that movie, Pacific Heights, where the psycho tenant tries to drive the yuppie landlords out of their house?  This is where it supposedly took place.  (It actually took place at Texas and 19th Street, in Potrero Hill, but then the house wouldn’t have sold for $750,000 in the late eighties.) 

Pacific Heights: median home price, a million.  Median income, fifty thou.  Why was anyone surprised when an angry renter happened?  Disclaimer: I have actually lived in this zip code.  As a renter.

#227 – 94939 Larkspur

Median Home Price: $1,004,396
Median Price Change: -26%
Average Days On Market: 95
Inventory: 36 properties
Median Household Income: $75,747
Ignored Because: Location, location, location! Right next to San Quentin.

image #236 – 94402 San Mateo

Median Home Price: $982,903
Median Price Change: -10%
Average Days On Market: 103
Inventory: 103 properties
Median Household Income: $82,796

Whoa, look at that map!  This zip is cut into three different pieces!  Well seriously, if San Mateo gets to pick and choose separate parts that go to one zip, of course they can optimize it to get a couple of their zips onto the Top 500.  Place your bets which one we’ll see next, and when!

For this, 94402 is nominated for the Jerry Mander Prize for noncontiguousity.  But it’s still San Mateo so nobody is impressed.  Just the fact that we’re now under a million for the median home price tells us we’re not in Atherton anymore.

image #238 – 94118 San Francisco

Median Home Price: $976,434
Median Price Change: -8%
Average Days On Market: 71
Inventory: 86 properties
Median Household Income: $61,609

This zip contains Inner Richmond and Laurel Village, along with the nice places along the Presidio near Lake Street.  What’s surprising is how close the numbers are to Pacific Heights’ zip code.  Then again, zip codes were designed for postal workers, not real estate agents.

Then again, it includes 19th Avenue, and any house near there could be described as A Thoroughfare Runs Through It.

image #241 – 94127 San Francisco

Median Home Price: $969,776
Median Price Change: -8%
Average Days On Market: 103
Inventory: 50 properties
Median Household Income: $95,313

Remember what I was saying earlier about Portrero Hill?  Well, this isn’t it.  This is Mount Davidson, highest point in San Francisco (928 feet).  The neighborhood southwest of Mount Davidson is called Sherwood Forest.  Now all we need is a Robin Hood to steal from the people who live here (check out the median income).

This is also the site of the park scene with the cross in Dirty Harry, where Harry confronts serial killer Scorpio.

image #245 – 95120 San Jose

Median Home Price: $965,271
Median Price Change: -2%
Average Days On Market: 86
Inventory: 176 properties
Median Household Income: $120,117

San Jose?  No way.

Way, even San Jose finally cracks the list of Most Expensive Zip Codes, although #245 doesn’t exactly serve up bragging rights.  This part of town is on a hill like San Francisco above, but if you can name a movie shot at Calero Reservoir as notable as Dirty Harry (heck, our Governator said that movie influenced his acting career), go for it in the comments.

image #250 – 95033 Los Gatos

Median Home Price: $940,654
Median Price Change: 7%
Average Days On Market: 172
Inventory: 98 properties
Median Household Income: $106,675

Los Gatos’ third zip code squeaks under the wire at number 250, joining more chichi 95030 (#38) and 95032 (#199) in the list of Most Expensive Zip Codes in the United States.

This from the zip that provided the Cheapest House in Los Gatos earlier this week.  But it’s also got its tail cut off!  Did Mean old 95030 bite it when they were duking it out over Monte Sereno?

Next Installment: You’ll be on the edge of your seat wondering if Sunnyvale makes the next cut!  Only on Burbed!!!!

Comments (14) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 5:05 am

December 15, 2010

Cheapest House in Los Gatos

Another day, another Black Friday DEAL!  Tired of houses in places you’d be embarrassed to call home?  How about a zip code that’s on Forbes’ 500 Most Expensive list? Yes, here is a DEAL in the 199th most expensive zip code in the entire United States!

206 Thomas Dr, Los Gatos, CA 95032
$610,000

image Beds: 2
Baths: 1.5
Sq. Ft.: 1,020
$/Sq. Ft.: $598
Lot Size: 6,675 Sq. Ft.
Property Type: Detached Single Family
Style: Traditional, Cottage/Bungalow
Stories: 1
View: Mountains
Year Built: 1964
Community: Los Gatos/Monte Sereno
County: Santa Clara
MLS#: 81027596
Source: MLSListings
Status: Active
On Redfin: 190 days

Great opportunity to live in Los Gatos. Charming Home w/ updated kitchen and bathroom w/ concrete and limestone counters, hardwood floors, newly painted interior, crown molding, ceiling fans in all rooms, sunny den as living room extension (not included in sq. footage), fireplace, quiet location next to park, backyard with huge deck and hot tub. 2 bedrooms, 1 full bathroom and a half bathroom

Concrete and limestone counters?  Is that the new kitchen trend that will replace granite, or did the contractor have a brother-in-law working for Caltrans? 

Somebody seems to have gotten a DEAL on the deck stepping, though.

image image

So buy this house today!  It’s in a respectable location, and the lawn looks like it really needs watering.  Plus if one of you doesn’t buy this by close of business today, I bring back the zip code series.  No pressure.

Comments (56) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 5:03 am

October 31, 2010

The Most Expensive Zip Codes – The Series You Hate, The Cities You Loathe

Welcome to Part 5 of the least popular series ever on burbed, ever.  You’re welcome.  Forbes thanks you too, since we’re making fun of their mistakes when they wrote an article on the 500 most expensive zips, and hired Altos Research to do their data crunching.

Here are the first four parts for you masochists who can’t get enough numbers, maps, and boring fascinating statistics.

Today we’re going to cover the zips ranked 151-200.  But to reduce the complaining just a tiny bit, we’ll leave out anywhere that isn’t within reasonable commuting distance to the Googleplex.  Actually if I left out everywhere more than 10 miles from Google we’d only have four cities today, which might not be such a bad thing.

image #151 – 94306 Palo Alto

Median Home Price: $1,270,424
Median Price Change: 4%
Average Days On Market: 67
Inventory: 69 properties
Median Household Income: $82,314

At least this time we’re going to start much closer to where the jobs are.  This is a very important zip code.  If you remember this article, 94306 is the only zip code that’s left in the Real Bay Area (RBA) anymore, if you define RBA as the place where prices don’t go down.  So despite being the #2 zip in Palo Alto (94301 came in at #73 on the list), it’s #1 in the RBA.  It’s also last in the RBA, because none of the other zips qualified at all.

The real reason 94306 went up while prices everywhere else collapsed is because it’s the cheap section of Palo Alto.  This area, formerly the city of Mayfield, featured small homes on small lots which people now tear down and put in oversized mini-mansions that loom over the remaining bungalows.  Unfortunately, real estate statistics are oblivious to such trends, such as someone paying money to remodel or replace a house.  Instead you see crazy price increases and think the neighborhood is red-hot rather than full of sawdust and paint fumes.  If the sale price stats subtracted out the money paid for construction, there’s a good chance 94306 would have dropped as much or even more than the other zips around it.

#160 – 94549 Lafayette

Median Home Price: $1,225,110
Median Price Change: -4%
Average Days On Market: 88
Inventory: 126 properties
Median Household Income: $101,555
Ignored Because: In the East Bay

#170 – 94941 Mill Valley

Median Home Price: $1,185,211
Median Price Change: NA
Average Days On Market: 106
Inventory: 197 properties
Median Household Income: $91,283
Ignored Because:  Model for Hill Valley in Back to the Future

#171 – 94563 Orinda

Median Home Price: $1,184,089
Median Price Change: -5%
Average Days On Market: 101
Inventory: 101 properties
Median Household Income: $119,832
Ignored Because: In East Bay, even closer to Oakland than Lafayette

image #173 – 94303 Palo Alto

Median Home Price: $1,175,241
Median Price Change: -5%
Average Days On Market: 59
Inventory: 34 properties
Median Household Income: $64,256

It’s a pretty safe bet that the median home price hasn’t been contaminated by East Palo Alto (which shares this zip code), but take a look at that median household income.  It’s about $20,000 less than 94306, which has a fairly similar set of residents (in the Palo Alto part of the zip, anyway).

While the zip shares with the Oaklandesque East Palo Alto (hey, at least it brought you IKEA), it also has some nice areas in midtown as well as the West Marine on San Antonio Road.  (Remember, yachties spend like drunken sailors because they are drunken sailors.)

Since 94303 has just everything in the whole city that hugs US 101, that isn’t helping matters.  Some of the lower-cost Eichlers in South Palo Alto that get torn down and replaced by monster houses are in 94303, too.  Hope they put in triple-pane windows like they did at Gables End.

#175 – 94965 Sausalito

Median Home Price: $1,173,479
Median Price Change: -11%
Average Days On Market: 149
Inventory: 84 properties
Median Household Income: $76,808
Ignored Because: Has stupid song written about it

#179 – 94705 Berkeley

Median Home Price: $1,152,174
Median Price Change: -1%
Average Days On Market: 70
Inventory: 30 properties
Median Household Income: $68,112
Ignored Because: Shares zip code with Oakland, lousy state-funded college

image #184 – 94025 Menlo Park

Median Home Price: $1,134,946
Median Price Change: -9%
Average Days On Market: 88
Inventory: 179 properties
Median Household Income: $89,572

When you realize that this zip stretches from the foothills near I-280 all the way to the slums of Belle Haven, that median home price is rather impressive.  Not every city the size of Menlo Park has to make due with a single zip code.  Palo Alto has four distinct zips, and Redwood City has five.

And while a ranking of 184th most expensive zip code in the country is clearly not good enough for the RBA, perhaps Menlo Park could petition the
postal service to split the city into East and West postal zones, in hope of the western half aspiring to the RBA.

Nah, prices down 9%.  Forget it.

image #185 – 94062 Redwood City

Median Home Price: $1,133,462
Median Price Change: -5%
Average Days On Market: 97
Inventory: 111 properties
Median Household Income: $96,677

Ha ha!  What was I just talking about above?  Redwood City is nowhere as high on the snootiness index as Menlo Park, and yet by having several zip codes, they managed to get one of them to qualify for the Forbes list.  And this is the one zip that shares with Woodside, which is quite a bit higher in the rankings (#41). 

Oh, speaking of Woodside, you’ll never guess what Forbes says their median household income is.  That’s right. $96,677.  Nice going, Forbes.  That means the Woodside median should be higher and the Redwood city number lower, but you managed to miss yet another muck-up.

This part of Redwood City includes the Emerald Lake Hills area, which is a delightful mix of new construction and bizarre old places featuring old cars in the front yard.  You know how some places in Atherton look like Greenwich, Connecticut?  Well, Emerald Lake Hills looks like Appalachia where half the residents won the lottery.

#193 – 94515 Calistoga

Median Home Price: $1,102,625
Median Price Change: -17%
Average Days On Market: 140
Inventory: 67 properties
Median Household Income: $44,320
Why Ignored: Can’t take place named after bubble water seriously

#194 – 94610 Piedmont

Median Home Price: $1,094,846
Median Price Change: -51%
Average Days On Market: 64
Inventory: 7 properties
Median Household Income: $49,066
Why Ignored: Not only down 51%, but completely surrounded by Oakland.  Completely.  Rival zip 94611 is #74 on list.  I also call BS on Forbes for that median household income.  It’s probably mixed up with the part of OAKLAND this zip shares with.  Oakland, it’s full of Oakland.

image #199 – 95032 Los Gatos

Median Home Price: $1,079,587
Median Price Change: -1%
Average Days On Market: 111
Inventory: 183 properties
Median Household Income: $93,118

It’s the home of Netflix!  Woo-hoo!

The second-best zip in Los Gatos (95030 came in at #38), this zip features delightful estates in the foothills and higher, as well as ho-hum tract houses in the flats near freeways.

Now, take a look at that median home price, above.  It’s barely over a million smackeroos, and we’ve almost hit the 200 mark.  That means the next installment (if there is one) will feature houses in “expensive zip codes” that are under a million dollars dollars for a median price.

Think about that for a moment.  Where we live is so Special that we think of houses under a million dollars as not particularly worth commenting on.  At least most of the zips we’ve shown so far are above the average price for a house in this area.  But as we work our way down that list of 500 zips, we’re going to start to see some very ordinary places that are still more expensive than 44,000 other zip codes in the entire country.

Coming Soon: burbed guest editor forcibly retired for not stopping worst series ever, assailed by mob with pitchforks and torches.  Plus, Part 716 of Bing Maps Galore!

Comments (6) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 5:01 am

October 28, 2010

A Great Land Bank Opportunity

Today’s listing was sent in by burbed reader nomadic.  Thanks very much!

14050 Shannon Rd, Los Gatos, CA 95032
$8,495,000

image Beds: 6
Baths: 8
Sq. Ft.: 6,138
$/Sq. Ft.: $1,384
Lot Size: 31.53 Acres
Property Type: Detached Single Family
Style: French
Stories: 3
View: Green Belt, Mountains, Canyon, Valley, City Lights
Year Built: 1998
Community: Los Gatos/Monte Sereno
County: Santa Clara
MLS#: 80788192
Source: MLSListings
Status: Active
On Redfin: 941 days

Sellers found their next property-Bring your offers. .This stunning residence captures the timeless refinement set on approximately 31.5 acres of gently rolling, pristine landscape. Annexation is complete in the town of Los Gatos Check with the Town on lot min 2.5 acres. 6 bdrms, 7 baths & 2 1/2 baths. This makes this home a great land bank Opportunity.

imageHere’s what nomadic had to say about this stunning residence:

On the market for 932 days. is that a record?  It’s been listed on and off for NINE years without a sale.  The price has been cut $2.3M since 2008 – that’s more instant equity than 1.5 median houses in this zip code.  The
realtor is keeping his optimism in the first line of the listing, “Sellers found their next property-Bring your offers.”

Wow, 932 days.  That’s like 932 years in Silicon Valley time measurement.  Let’s take a look.   If burbed readers can figure out why yesterday’s house wasn’t selling, I’m sure they can do it again!

And it’s Style: French.  How do you say, “You have got to be fracken kidding me” in French?  Or “Don’t you think they over-Photoshopped the green in that exterior shot?”

imageI don’t know if I’d call this style French.  These overdone rooms with saturated colors that belong on evening gowns rather than wall decor remind me of somewhere… Ah yes!  Another house that isn’t selling!

Mais non, nomadic, your submission is not a burbed record, because that house has been on Redfin for (zut alors!) 1284 days.

Maybe there is something about houses with curved stairways landing on white tile with black inset, or fussy little rooms in a color that will drive you mad inside of a week.  Do these properties have that certain je ne sais quoi?  Problem is, all the buyers are certain to have that je n’ai rien.

The Annexation is complete in the town of Los Gatos!  Toute résistance est futile.

Comments (27) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 5:07 am

October 22, 2010

Investors/Contractors Delight with Many Possibilities!

What is your favorite kind of problem property?  Do you like 100+ year old termite havens?  How about severe price reductions chasing the market down?  Or does an eye-popping you-have-got-to-be-insane wishing price make your day?

Here’s what burbed reader nomadic, who sent in today’s featured listing, had to say about this trifecta:

$2.5M for a tear-down on .47 acres in LG?  That backs up to townhouses?  How much is it worth to be a short walk to the middle school?  Whatever it is, it’s probably off-set by the headache of all of the traffic that will
accompany it.

You know what the agent would say: the value is in the land!

16922 Mitchell Ave, Los Gatos, CA 95032
$2,499,000

image

Beds: 2
Baths: 1
Sq. Ft.: 1,200
$/Sq. Ft.: $2,082
Lot Size: 0.47 Acres
Property Type: Detached Single Family
Stories: 1
View: Neighborhood
Year Built: 1900
Community: Los Gatos/Monte Sereno
County: Santa Clara
MLS#: 80823053
Source: MLSListings
Status: Active
On Redfin: 821 days

Investors/Contractors Delight with many possibilities! 3 Lot subdivision capability to build 3 new homes. Remodel existing home and build two new homes at site. Replace/remodel existing home on large lot. Property walkable to Los Gatos shopping and schools. Huge price reduction for this in-demand LG location.

Yes you read that right, 110 years old, 1200 square feet, with each one of them priced over two thousand dollars, and it’s been on the market for 821 days.  It’s like every single metric of horrible all rolled up in one.  All we need is a wrecked foundation and a clouded title.  (Um, wait… why is there an earthquake disclosure?)

So let’s see what nomadic meant about the neighborhood.

image

“Backs up to townhomes” wasn’t a figure of speech!  But speaking of Many Possibilities, how about checking out the other MLS listing for the same location?  Same price, same address, but they’re marketing the property as Residential Land and ignore the house.

Guess the Investing Contractors are in, demanding another Huge Price Reduction before delighting.

Comments (18) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 5:07 am

October 17, 2010

The Most Expensive Zip Codes: The Also Rans

Any zip that isn’t in the Top 50 shouldn’t qualify for Real Bay Area (RBA) status, right?  Here are the Bay Area zips in Forbes Magazine’s Most Expensive Zip Codes #51 through 100.  Since these aren’t good enough to have made the cut, we can assume any city featured here is no longer fit to inhabit the RBA.  So enjoy reading about these loservilles, that are still more expensive than most anywhere else in the country.

In case you missed the previous entries in this series, the Top 25 appear here, and #26-50 can be found here.  I encourage you to check them out, as obviously they are better places to live than what you’ll find in this article.

image #53 – 94920 Tiburon

Median Home Price: $2,046,939
Median Price Change: -22%
Average Days On Market: 126
Inventory: 116 properties
Median Household Income:$106,492

Yeesh, down 22%.  No RBA for you, Tiburon.  Wait, we already saw this zip.  It’s also #8.  So, um, they split Belvedere from Tiburon?

Well, well, well, there are 39 properties for sale in Belvedere (median home price, $3.28 million), and 116 here.  And yet both places have (what a surprise) the exact same median household income.

You blew it again, Forbes.  Am I going to have to rewrite that entire article for you?

image #59 – 94588 Danville

Median Home Price: $1,922,523
Median Price Change: NA
Average Days On Market: 276
Inventory: 4 properties
Median Household Income: $92,644

Be sure to check out this East Bay interloper: the idiots at Forbes got the wrong map.  They can’t tell Danville from Dublin. And with only 4 properties on the market, they have no idea if it’s up or down.

Maybe those East Coast provincials ought to be told they’ve managed the equivalent of confusing Westhampton Beach with Levittown.

 

image#62 – 94904 Kentfield

Median Home Price: $1,911,822
Median Price Change: 6%
Average Days On Market: 99
Inventory: 40 properties
Median Household Income: $82,528

This Marin County city is right next to Ross and may even manage to get more precipitation.  Why people would want to live here when they could buy a palace in San Jose is beyond me.  Plus San Jose only gets 11 inches of rain a year.

And San Jose is so much closer to Google!  Priorities, people!

 

image #69 – 94970 Stinson Beach

Median Home Price: $1,790,196
Median Price Change: -7%
Average Days On Market: 232
Inventory: 27 properties
Median Household Income: $88,184

Stinson Beach can’t be in the RBA, it’s down 7%, and next to Bolinas, home of the high-priced water meter.

First one to make a joke about this zip code’s ranking and “Sex on the Beach” is going to be asked to leave the room.

No, I do not want to hear about what that peninsula with Seadrift Road looks like.  You all have filthy minds.  Yes, especially you.

image #71 – 94024 Los Altos

Median Home Price: $1,746,928
Median Price Change: -6%
Average Days On Market: 91
Inventory: 67 properties
Median Household Income: NA

Down 6%, and another zip-splitter.

Seriously, is there anything funny to say about Los Altos?  Other than the featured listing that’s running tomorrow, that is?

Well, that and the dude with the cellular antenna farm.

And the fact that this same zip in Los Altos Hills is ranked so much higher at #18.  And that Forbes couldn’t tell the difference between the two and showed houses from Los Altos when featuring The Hills Hills.  And yet, 67 properties here, 15 properties there. Household income, not available here, not available there. Oh, oh. They match.

image #73 – 94301 Palo Alto

Median Home Price: $1,730,889
Median Price Change: -6%
Average Days On Market: 128
Inventory: 58 properties
Median Household Income: $97,758

We already knew this zip code wasn’t in the RBA anymore.  Its low ranking merely proves it.  As does this listing which hasn’t sold in more than 2 years.

Didn’t we all agree not to talk about Palo Alto anymore?  Anyone?  Bueller?

Oh yeah, Steve Jobs lives here!

 

image #74 – 94611 Piedmont

Median Home Price: $1,709,577
Median Price Change: -3%
Average Days On Market: 96
Inventory: 23 properties
Median Household Income: $68,853

Down 3%, and suspiciously Bradburylike.  Oakland, I tell you, it’s surrounded by Oakland!

And a freeway runs through it!  Just like Oakland!

And this place hasn’t sold yet. And neither has this one.  This city is FAIL: 100% of its listings on burbed unsold!

 

image #83 – 95070 Saratoga

Median Home Price: $1,652,013
Median Price Change: -1%
Average Days On Market: 124
Inventory: 177 properties
Median Household Income: $138,206

Down 1%.  That’s borderline for remaining in the RBA, but coming in at #83 just cannot be allowed.

Can anyone remember why Saratoga used to be in the RBA?  What exactly did it do to get there in the first place?  Why should a city with seven different school districts thinks it’s real anything?

I say no, not until they manage to sell this house.

image #84 – 95030 Monte Sereno

Median Home Price: $1,647,239
Median Price Change: -34%
Average Days On Market: 142
Inventory: 84 properties
Median Household Income: $117,564

Stop me if you’ve seen this zip code before.

Down 34%. Wait, it’s right next to Saratoga.  Plus borrowing Los Gatos’ zip code.  84 properties?  WTF?  In a town of 3,483?  And only 53 properties listed in Los Gatos (#38), population 28,592?  That’s a real knee-slapper!  Now can you tell me the one about the Santa Claran, the San Joseite, and the Saratoger?

 

image #92 – 94123 San Francisco

Median Home Price: $1,609,753
Median Price Change: 9%
Average Days On Market: 58
Inventory: 63 properties
Median Household Income: $84,710

burbed, voted best real estate blog in San Francisco, would like to welcome 94123 to the list of Most Expensive Zip Codes!  This is the first zip in San Francisco to make the cut.  And that is really awful, because several New York City and Los Angeles zips have already shown up.  Congrats, you losers.

Up 9%.  This is the Marina District and includes some of Billionaire’s Row.  Yes, including the place selling for $45 million.

image #93 – 94506 Blackhawk

Median Home Price: $1,604,976
Median Price Change: 19%
Average Days On Market: 143
Inventory: 51 properties
Median Household Income: $142,459

Up 19%.  Wait, this is the East Bay.  Prices don’t go up in the East Bay.  The proper expression is “Blackhawk down.”

Seriously, this is a developer-designed golf-course community that didn’t even exist before 1980.  Having this zip appear right after one full of history, architecture, design, and taste is just wrong.

 

image #94 – 94022 Los Altos

Median Home Price: $1,600,139
Median Price Change: -28%
Average Days On Market: 87
Inventory: 53 properties
Median Household Income: NA

Wait, is today Groundhog Day?  Didn’t I just say something about Los Altos Hills, and that we already saw this zip, and that… someone must have hit me over the head, because I’m seeing double.  Los Altos Hills in this same zip is #15 on this list, with a median home price of $3.04 million.  And (what a coincidence), 58 properties.  Sloppy work, Forbes, very sloppy.

This place doesn’t even have the cell phone antenna farm!

And that’s it for the Also Rans of the Most Expensive Zip Codes in the Whole Fracking Country.  Except… the list goes to 500 zips.  If you don’t want to see anymore of these Bing Maps, commence whining.

Next installment in this thrilling series: The Most Expensive Zip Codes, Volume 714,

Comments (59) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 5:01 am

October 9, 2010

The Most Expensive Zip Codes, Second Tier

In a previous installment, we looked at the Bay Area zips on the 25 most expensive zip codes piece in Forbes magazine.  But how could we leave the other 475 of the top 500 alone?  (Other than all those TL;DR comments.)

Here’s what’s local that made the list, between 26-50.  Try to guess if any of your favorites made it.  Feel free to comment on any of these zips if you’re familiar with them, or even better if you aren’t.  Maps courtesy of Forbes.

image #30 – 94957: Ross, CA

Median Home Price: $2,519,269
Median Price Change: 1%
Average Days On Market: 120
Inventory: 26 properties
Median Household Income: NA

I’ve heard of Ross!  I think the San Francisco Chronicle used to put it in the local weather stats because it got so much more rain than anywhere else in the entire Bay Area.

And no, this is not Fort Ross.  This is a zip in central Marin County (that’s for those of you who can’t read a map or never left your town).

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image#31 – 94028: Portola Valley, CA

Median Home Price: $2,509,962
Median Price Change: 5%
Average Days On Market: 112
Inventory: 38 properties
Median Household Income: $164,479

Yay, back to the Real Bay Area!  And PV might be the only zip code, anywhere, to be shaped like the Roadrunner’s head.  If that doesn’t explain why their median income is so honking high, I don’t know what will.

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image #38 – 95030: Los Gatos, CA

Median Home Price: $2,293,268
Median Price Change: 39%
Average Days On Market: 105
Inventory: 53 properties
Median Household Income: $117,564

So far the Bay Area listings have either danced around the Stanford campus, or were located in Marin County.  Los Gatos is the first one within shouting distance of San Jose.

Los Gatos has two more zip codes.  Any suspicions when we’ll be seeing them?  (No peeking.)

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image #41 – 94062: Woodside, CA

Median Home Price: $2,228,269
Median Price Change: -8%
Average Days On Market: 152
Inventory: 63 properties
Median Household Income: $96,677And back to San Mateo County we go!
Don’t let the Post Office fool you.  94062 includes a slice of Redwood City, some of it practically on El Camino Real.  And if you haven’t ever driven El Camino all the way to SF, you may not know that in Redwood City, ECR is really, really, really close to 101.

Really!

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image #49 – 94528: Diablo, CA

Median Home Price: $2,111,588
Median Price Change: -20%
Average Days On Market: 133
Inventory: 16 properties
Median Household Income: NA

OK, who let the East Bay into the club?

I swear, you let a couple of them show up in burbed and next think you know they’re appearing on expensive zip code lists.  Fortunately, the market is reminding those upstarts why East is East, Best is Best, and never the twain shall meet.

Down 20 percent, yowza!

More good news.  The top 50 zip codes do not include a single flyover state.  Most are in California and New York, a couple in New Jersey, Greenwich, CT came in at #27, and somehow one in Miami Beach popped up. The only other West Coast zip not in California is Medina, Washington (#42).

Yes, we have 450 zip codes to go, but at after #50,we could stop providing these useless maps.  Or we could make them twice as big.  Anyway, please comment on these or any other expensive zip codes.  And if you hate, hate, hate this series, feel free to whine, whine, whine.

Next installment: The Also-Rans, part 37.

Comments (67) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 5:04 am