If you are looking in sharon Heights I am sure you are aware of the Sand Hill Road. The reason it is called Sand Hill is because the soil has a high sand content. Makes sense right? Well soil with a high sand content is not very stable and therefore many of the homes in Sharon Heights either currently have, or had in the past foundation problems. These issues can be fixed with modern foundation engineering.
The county area of West Menlo Park has different soil and so those foundations do not have the same problems as Sharon Heights. However, the water table level is very high, so these homes can sometimes, although not all the time, have problems with water under the home causing problems. Again, this can be fixed by modern drainage fixes which can be incorporated into a new home, or added to an existing home. Sometimes it is as easy as adding a $300 sump pump.
Keller Williams Realty Palo Alto
Cal BRE 01191194
For any property you are considering enter the address into the following website to obtain an understanding of its geological susceptibility risk: http://myhazards.calema.ca.gov . If you believe you have found a home with "good geology" you probably should still hire a soils/geology expert for a second opinion.
Engineering can certainly overcome geology; the question is what will it cost?