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Discount Real Estate Brokers Serving the Entire San Francisco Bay Area

By Baron Chestney | Broker in San Francisco, CA
  • Little Cheap CONDOS for You and Me - Baron Chestney's Blah Blah Blog #6

    Posted Under: Market Conditions in Monterey, Home Buying in Monterey, Property Q&A in Monterey  |  April 4, 2012 10:28 AM  |  2,227 views  |  No comments
    2% cash rebates for home buyers and 2% commission discounts for home sellers with the Baron!

    Based on all the positive feedback that we received from the Baron Chestney Blah Blah Blog #5 “ "Little Cheap HOUSES for You and Me", we have decided to make this blog a follow up piece that instead focuses on affordable San Francisco bay area CONDOS, instead of houses. Both of these blogs were written with the objective of showing that there are, indeed, affordable homes in every single San Francisco bay area county, no matter what one's budget. Remember, these days, it either already is or will soon be cheaper to own a home in most bay area cities than it is to rent in those same cities! Also, mortgage interest rates are still at all time lows. Add in the fact that FHA loans are available and one can get a conforming (under $417,000) loan with as little as just a 3.5% down payment, and all of a sudden, home ownership becomes affordable for many people -- yes, even here, in the San Francisco bay area! First time home buyers, those who wish to return to home ownership after a period of renting, and yes, even current homeowners who wish to purchase a second home or an investment property can all take advantage of the current real estate market and get a little cheap condo!

    First, we would like to point out the fact that a condominium is a legal definition for a type of ownership in property. Most people think of a condominium in terms of a type of a physical structure - most folks think of a condominium (aka condo for short) as an apartment style residence which is situated all on one level, and is a unit within a large building or building complex surrounded by other similar units. While that description does indeed describe what many condos look like, the point here is that a condominium is a legal type of ownership of property in which the owner owns the air space inside a unit within a building that contains other such units. The physical builiding itself is collectively owned by all of the homeowners. So, for example, a condo can be an apartment style unit, OR, it can also be a two (or three) story unit with an attached garage- or, what many people commonly refer to as a townhouse. The term townhouse refers to an architectural style of a physical structure, whereas the term condominium refers to a legal form of property ownership. So, all townhouses would be one type of condominium, whereas only some condominiums would be of the townhouse style. Got it?! Ok! Now, let's take a look at some highly affordable condominiums in every San Francisco bay area county - little cheap condos for you and me!

    We have decided to use the 2 bedroom, 2 bath model for the purposes of this list. Whereas the 3BR, 2BA house is considered the most popular model for single family detached homes, the 2BR, 2BA condo is considered the most popular/desirable model. It is well suited for a roommate situation, and one can always rent out a bedroom and bathroom if one becomes financially challenged. As a result, the 2BR, 2BA floorplan generally has a higher resale value than a 1BR or a studio. So, for the purposes of this blog, we are looking at 2BR, 2BA condos at a minimum. On occasion, we have found a THREE bedroom, two bath unit - in those cases, consider the third bedroom a bonus -- an extra room never hurts! It's fairly uncommon, but if a 3 BR, 2 BA condo is still affordable for a great price, then why not?!

    Let's begin our tour of little cheap condos in the city and county of San Francisco. We found six (6) condos that can be purchased for less than $200,000! As an example, we found a 2BR, 2BA condo for sale for $130,000 -- the cheapest one in the city, it features 1500 sq ft of living space, which is very, very large for a 2/2 unit! The other five units ranged in price but were still all under $200,000.

    Crossing the Golden Gate Bridge and heading up to Marin County, we found five (5) condos priced under $200,000. They were all located in the city of San Rafael and were priced between $160,000 and $190,000. The cheapest was a 2BR, 2BA condo for $160,000, which featured 1,000 square feet of living space. Hey, folks, we're talking about Marin County here!

    Going in the opposite direction, down the peninsula to the gorgeous county of San Mateo, we found eight (8) condos priced under $300,000. They range in price from $239,000 through $289,000, and these are all 2 BR, 2 BA units, located in the cities of San Mateo, San Bruno, and Daly City. They range in size from 900 sq ft to 1,300 sq ft. The cheapest was a 2BR, 2BA in Daly City that offers 1,300 sq ft of living space for $239,000.

    Continuing further down the peninsula, we come to Santa Clara county, home of Silicon Valley. We found eight (8) condos priced under $350,000 which were located in Sunnyvale, Santa Clara, Morgan Hill, and Gilroy. In San Jose, we found over two dozen condos priced under $250,000 --the cheapest was a 2 BR, 2 BA 1,000 sq ft unit for $205,000. The eight non-San Jose units range in price from a $310,000 unit in Sunnyvale to a $339,000 unit in Santa Clara. The size of the units ranges from 900 to 1100 sq ft of living space. Remember, these are all 2BR, 2BA units.

    If you travel further down the peninsula into Santa Cruz County, you will find nine (9) condos priced under $300,000. These are all 2BR, 2BA units, ranging in size from 1,000 sq ft to 1,300 ft, and ranging in price from $239,000 to $299,000. Remember, these are all move-in quality units, not fixer uppers or contractor's specials.

    Looking for a nice vacation condo in Napa County? We found three (3) condos for under $200,000. They ranged in price from $150,000 to $199,000  and though uncommon, they were all 3BR, 2BA units with at least 1,100 square feet.

    Do you want a REALLY cheap little cheap condo? OK, here we go: how about a 2 BR, 2 BA condo featuring 1,000 square feet of living space or more? No problem! In Sonoma County, and Solano County, you can take your pick from among DOZENS of little cheap condos, all of which are priced under $100,000!!! Too far off the beaten path for you? Ok, no problem -- read on, and we've got some great informaton for you¦

    In Contra Costa County, we found over TWO DOZEN condos that feature 2BR, 2BA condos with 1,000+ square feet of living space, all for UNDER $100,000!!! yes, it's true. Check out the cities of Rodeo, Pinole, San Pablo, Richmond, Bay Point, Pittsburg, and Antioch and you'll find them.

    Last but certainly not least, how about the centrally located Alameda County? We found over ONE DOZEN condos featuring 1,000+ sq ft of living space in a 2BR, 2 BA floorplan, all priced under $100,000!!! They were located in the cities of Oakland, Hayward, and San Leandro. Take a look for yourself!

    So, remember, there are little cheap condos for you and me in every single San Francisco bay area county!

    Stay tuned for the next edition of the Baron Chestney Blah Blah Blog, coming soon! As usual, thanks for following our blog. We hope this information will be useful for you, and/or for your friends, relatives, coworkers, and neighbors -- do them all a favor and tell them where THEY can find a little cheap condo, too!

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