July 28, 2013

For the Rich, $5 Million is the new $1 Million

Discuss, particularly as it pertains to Real Bay Area home values. 

From The Wall Street Journal, which also believes poor people are Lucky Duckies.

Comments (9) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 7:04 am






July 23, 2013

10% Discount in Hillsborough (price subject to seller financing)

Today we turn our back on the crapboxen and Likelers. We’re off to Hillsborough, where you need not rub elbows with your neighbors at all. In fact, you won’t even see your neighbors unless you show up at one of their fundraising balls.  Thanks very much to Burbed reader Michael Boltonestater for sending this in this cozy contemporary, provided that by contemporary we mean we’re putting on our FDR campaign button.  Um, first campaign.

130722-verbalee-redfin40 VERBALEE Ln
Hillsborough, CA 94010
$26,000,000

12 Beds
13.5 Baths
35,000 Sq. Ft.
$743 / Sq. Ft.
Built: 1932
Lot Size: 5.91 Acres
On Redfin: 26 days
Status: Active
Property Type: Detached Single Family
Stories: 3
County: San Mateo
Style: Tudor
Community: Tobin Clark Estate/Polo Terrace
MLS#: 81322895

Price subject to seller financing, otherwise $29 million. Tobin Clark Estate designed by David Adler on 6 landscaped acres. Grand Music Room w/ 15ft ceilings, soaring leaded-glass windows, antique parquet-de-Versailles floors, French doors to Loggia & Grand Tr. Marble Entry w/ 17th Century paneling, Formal Dining Room. VIP + 2 Master Suites, oak-paneled Library.

130722-verbalee-tesselationThis isn’t just any house. This is the Tobin Clark Estate. It has its own video. And no, we don’t mean the one Redfin puts together automatically (there’s one of those too! Save $243,750!)  Just think, this home has been host to “numerous dignitaries including Presidents Richard Nixon, Gerald Ford, Ronald Reagan, and George H.W. Bush.”

Guess we now know the sellers’ politics.  And given that the price goes up to $29 million if you won’t let the sellers finance your purchase, guess we also know how they got enough saved up to buy a spread like this in the first place. Remember, if they won’t give you a cash discount, you can always save $243,750 with Redfin!

We hope you also caught that the link to the estate notes the house was being put up for sale… in January.  January, 2012.

On Redfin: 26 days.  Riiiiiiiiight.  At least the 35,000 square foot house isn’t a typo.

Comments (6) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 7:01 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

February 9, 2013

More Bubblicious Signs of Bubbling Bubblicity

Sometimes, there’s a message out there with your name on it, so you get hit on the head with it again and again and again.  Here are some of the messages we got yesterday, and they all add up to the same thing.

130208-bubble-foreclosureFirst, looks like HELOCs are coming back.  No, they’re not at the insane rate of the glory days of 2006, but there’s more in 2012 than 2011.  So that’s something for us to keep an eye on. 

One of the problems with HELOCs was HELOCity, where every homedebtor used the line of credit not for major home improvements or emergencies, but as a full-time ATM.  People bought a lot of giant-ass SUVs and vacations and bling using the equity in their homes.  Why would they do something that stupid? Do they really think they’d never have to pay it back?  Some of us actually do remember when second mortgages were subprime mortgages throughout the industry.

Speaking of subprime, you know what else is back? Subprime mortgages! That article we featured last weekend on the Dignity Mortgage wasn’t the only sip of subprime sangria.  Gotta love this quote:

The Revival of Subprime: Will This End Badly?

By Matt Clinch | CNBC – February 8, 2013

The sub-prime market – risky mortgage backed securities – is hot again and its revival is exceeding many people’s expectations, the chief market strategist at Rosenblatt Securities says. He believes this will end badly.

The subprime mortgage crisis which led to the financial crash of 2008 involved institutions making loans to those that had difficulty maintaining their repayment schedule.

Wall Street brokerage firm Rosenblatt – which has been monitoring the situation since the last storm – says the credit-led bull market is well under way.

"The subprime market’s revival is proving to be even stronger than we had anticipated," Brian Reynolds said in a research note. "This is just a credit cycle, and it will eventually end badly like the others."

We are sure you are thinking the same thing we are: How can we best profit from so many other people’s stupidity?

130208-bubble-pamaiNext, several different reports of an increasingly skewed seller’s market.  We’ll have one up bright and early to start the week, and it’s a doozy.  Here’s a smaller example, an on-the-ground report from Definitely Not the Real Bay Area.  This poor agent says she listed a Blossom Valley property and now her phone is ringing every ten minutes.  Won’t someone let her get some quiet time and please offer twice the asking price already? 

130208-bubble-downpaymentBuyers now have to write beg letters to get noticed when there’s 40 offers on the table. And who can forget the lottery line for just 4 Gale Ranch models in San Ramon.  Need we remind you, Gale Ranch is not only in the East Bay, it’s in a place where they are still making more land. 

If you haven’t already seen this 2007 (!!!) video, enjoy it.  And if you have, sing along, because HERE COMES ANOTHER BUBBLE.

Comments (32) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 5:05 am

January 12, 2013

How to get customers excited when you’re selling a house

130111-queen-bikini

130111-queen-houseGot your attention already, haven’t we?  And if you like the little taste of hot bikini bondage babe above, just wait until you see the bodacious blonde on blonde action (which we swear we are not making up).

For this and more blatant uses of barely-clothed women to sell real estate, have a look at this video.  Then check out the page for the house.

It’s already been sold at auction, but it’s a mighty long commute to Google (even more removed than last weekend’s house).  According to Google Maps, it’s 480 hours away, but that’s because they wanted a stop in Japan first.

Enjoy the video.  And enjoy today’s weekend open thread!

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

December 15, 2012

UPDATED: Snout Housing: Threat or Menace?

Letters, oh we get letters… Here’s something to snuffle over from Burbed reader Kiki:

121214-snout-victoriaI would love to see some analysis on South Bay snout houses.  Why are there so many? It’s like mullets at Wal-Mart.

Do they sit on the market longer than other house styles? Is that a punishment? Do people actually like them or do they settle because of … ahem … “inventory” available?

I don’t think anyone has ever done a published, peer reviewed analysis on snout houses (because the people who would be interested in that sort of data sure don’t want to share it). I’m in Santa Clara – I know of one tract developed in the 1950s that’s almost ALL snout houses. It’s east of Lawrence & north of El Camino (yes, El Camino runs East-West in Santa Clara) and runs east to about Kiely. I’m not sure how far north the sprawl of snout goes but I can surf google earth later today.

thank you for your delightful daily snark. I love what you’re doing.

121214-snout-warburtonGiven the location, location, location that Kiki provided, we went to Redfin and saw what was available.  Answer: nothing you can buy that’s particularly snoutside, but looking at recent sales yielded a winner from 1954 on our first click.

And in that same general area, no snout about it, different from the first one yet so much the same, and also from that excellent year of 1954.

Asnout these homes… yes, they do seem to be clustered in this area.  But we’ve featured this style of home before, and they aren’t all in West Central Santa Clara.

121214-snout-bouveronFor example, here’s one we ran at the beginning of this year.  It’s all snout and nothing else to face.  It’s also not in Santa Clara, but in San Jose.  Such a delightful frontage, wonder why it took ten months to sell. No, it didn’t take ten months, it sold this October.  And also this June, so it’s a snout-flip.  (The June sale took 3 years to happen, and then sold for 1/3 less than the 2000 sale price.)  Wow, instant equity!

But there are all kinds of snout houses, just as there are all kinds of buyers and sellers.

121214-snout-kirkwall121214-snout-college

121214-snout-selbyF’rinstance, this lovely little luxury lulu in Milpitas (on the left, above) is better than the usual snout house, because it has bunus snout.  Contrariwise, on the right is a Mountain View maisonette, or as Burbed reader bmwman91 put it, a “single-nostril snout house.”

This delightful domicile à droit (that’s at right for the realtards following along from their home offices) looks like it could fit in a tract with any of the others up top, but this middle-class muzzle-mansion is in Atherton. Yes, it’s in the cheap-ass part that’s practically Redwood City, but it has an Atherton mailing address and more importantly, an Atherton property tax bill.

Let us know about snout houses you’ve seen, visited, or even lived in.  Or let us know about anything else you want, because it’s also time to get your schnozz into a Weekend Open Thread!

Update 10:07 PM: How could we forget this ode to snout housing from 1986? Put your hands together for David Byrne, who anticipated what endless expansion of exurbia would lead to.  This is a clip from True Stories.

Comments (10) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 5:07 am

November 19, 2012

Like Google Streetview? You’ll LOVE Google Houseview!

Burbed reader nomadic informs us of a major Google Maps update.  Guess it’s not rolling out to everyone at once because we haven’t seen it yet.

121118-houseview-yesno

Awesome sauce! This is going to change real estate, because now, who needs to wait for an Open House or an agent to put together a Virtual Tour?  With this new feature, you can see a home’s interior layout, room sizes, fixtures and decor with just a few mouse clicks.

Bunus: Think of all the homes that will now qualify for the Burbed Good Housekeeping tag of approval!

1211180-houseview-in

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

October 28, 2012

Innocent Ingenues, Allergy Antagonists or School District Scammers?

Here’s a great story we found via Inside Los Gatos, and by “great” this time we actually do mean “great.”  It’s got a number of hot buttons, so fire up your righteous outrage!

Los Gatos Family Continues to Fight School

Edwards family says school won’t let their kids attend because of nut allergies. Los Gatos Union School claims the family doesn’t live in the right district

By Stephanie Chuang, NBC Bay Area, Tuesday, Oct 23, 2012, Updated 9:15 PM PDT

Edwards family says school won’t let their kids attend because of nut allergies, school claims the family doesn’t live in the right district

In a story we first told you on NBC Bay Area last Friday, the tension between one South Bay family and the Los Gatos Union School District (LGUSD) is coming to a head.

Tuesday morning, the Edwards family walked 9-year-old Ella and 7-year-old Sarah into the Van Meter Elementary school office – only to be greeted by the superintendent and two police officers.

“That’s when my heart sank, when I heard there were police officers just to prevent my girls from going to the school they belong in,” said Shuly Edwards, the girls’ mother, before she began to cry.

121026-vanmeter-ella-sarahThis story has a mom claiming her daughters have been kicked out of five different schools because of their nut allergies.  It has a district superintendent retorting the family is scamming the district because they actually live elsewhere.  It’s got threatened lawsuits. And of course, it’s got video of the girls being cute on cue. 

Due to all the highly pressurized and flammable contents, we hope this will lead to a veritable flamefight lively discussion. And just to pour some gasoline on the fire, we’ll get you going with some of the ruder observations from ILG’s own commenters.  Below is the first video, with more background on the Edwards’ nut allergy claims.

121026-vanmeter-policeHere are some of the juicier rumors from Inside Los Gatos. (Burbed provides the comment summary as-is and without any implied warranty for accuracy. Some material appearing herein may not have been meant as a factual statement.)  The photo at right is also from the blog.

  • This family has a home in Campbell mom’s sister is renting from them
  • The same family was asked to leave Mulberry School (private) because of unreasonable food demands of others; mom is a troublemaker.
  • The same mom was in a different news story about her chronic migraines (Confirmed!)
  • Van Meter Elementary already has a nut-free lunch table
  • Family provided two addresses and the first one was fictitious; were investigated for 5–6 weeks.  They have until next Wednesday to provide all paperwork or they’re out again.

We laugh at the foolish reporter in the follow-up video (top) for comparing Los Gatos Elementary to Moreland and Campbell school districts. Stephanie Chuang asked administrators at the latter two if they had ever called police to resolve a residency dispute.  As all readers of Burbed know, only Real Bay Area cities have Real Bay Area schools worth lying to get your kids into.

Comments (26) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 5:12 am

September 19, 2012

House with No Bedrooms in Novato Selling Shortly

It’s been far too long since we’ve checked in with Burbed reader Tom Paine.  Tom’s found us a new manse in Northern Marin!  Thanks!

120918-caribe-sawbuck188 Caribe Isle
Novato, CA 94949
$450,000

SHORT SALE
1 Story Detached
0 bedroom
— bathrooms
Finished Sq Ft: 1,824 sq ft
Lot Size: 0.22 acres
Year Built: 1964
48 years old
Type: 1 Story Detached
Style: Contemporary
Taxes: —
Subdivision: Novato
Stories: 1
1 PhotoPlay Video
Listed For Sale: 9/13/12
6 Days
$450,000
MLS #21221815

Here’s what Tom had to say when sending us this listing:

No bedrooms.  Nope, no bedrooms. Must be located between two starbucks.

Actually, we think it’s located in a foldspace anomoly, since there’s another house that’s not for sale at the same address, with a positive number of actual BRs and BAs.  We hope the higher dimensional attributes that allow these two homes to exist in superposition are included with the lot, or you’ll need to bring Erwin Schrödinger to help collapse the wave-form at your closing.

120918-caribe-redfin

188 Caribe Isle
Novato, CA 94949
$882,000 Last Sold Price

3 Beds
2 Baths
1,824 Sq. Ft.
$484 / Sq. Ft.
Built: 1964
Lot Size: 9,600
Sq. Ft.
Sold On: Jul 23, 2007
Status: Sold
Source: Public Records

No Property Details Available

Sorry, but Redfin currently has no details for this property.

No Agent Insights on This Home

We haven’t left any notes about this home yet, but as soon as we do, we’ll leave our thoughts here.

Sheesh.  Maybe Sawbuck can’t prove there are any bedrooms or bathrooms in this house, but they auto-generate these really thorough videos!  We’re disappointed that the narrator, using the Sawbuck info above, didn’t mention “no bedrooms.”  Or to be more exact, zero.

Comments (7) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 5:13 am