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Home Buying in 95124 : Real Estate Advice

  • All50
  • Local Info3
  • Home Buying28
  • Home Selling7
  • Market Conditions1

Activity 27
Thu Oct 19, 2017
Khushbu Kaushik asked:
Wed Sep 13, 2017
Jr_deberry answered:
As long as you're going to undercut, why not go directly to the seller and cut both Realtors out completely? It's really a matter of the value you place on their service. But, it's amazing that you want to keep a portion of the fee they will charge the seller to inventory and sell their home - not charged to you. Just remember that the vast national databases and services they both contribute their listing information to and simultaneously pay big bucks to subscribe to, maintain, and advertise on, like Zillo, Trulia, etc... are what make searching for that wonderful home at your fingertips on the internet possible. All the data and beautiful pictures, virtual tours, comparable sales and related information is all created and maintained by Realtors. Think about all of that while you are considering cutting into their professional service fees.

Actually, I think it's such a great idea, you should probably negotiate the same professional fee splitting deal with the next heart surgeon about to perform your bypass.

Good Luck
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0 votes 41 answers Share Flag
Tue Feb 2, 2016
D Imondi answered:
Some great answers here. I would advise you to first pull your own credit report at, the one that is free-you can pull a free report every 12 months from each of three repositories. Review it for accuracy, and dispute inaccuracies. Unless you actually apply for credit, the repositories aren't keeping track of changes in employment, marital status and the like, so don't think it's "wrong" if those aren't up-to-date.
Then work on your budget. A lender or mortgage broker can tell you on paper what you can afford, but unless it's a Veterans' Administration (VA) loan, no adjustments are made for family size or utilities. If you have lots of student loan debt, look into consolidation loans. Auto loans can also be refinanced if you find a lower rate. You should know that Gross Monthly Income is used, not Net (take-home) income. So there are no adjustments for your lifestyle, including gym memberships, mani-pedis, cell phone bills, dry-cleaning bills, groceries, how many times a week you eat out, lottery, activities and lessons for the children, etc. Some people are willing to cut back and realize they need to make sacrifices. If you're not, don't buy the house in the price range that you may be told you can afford, because there is a reason homes are called "Money Pits". They have to be maintained, and if you don't do that, there can be very large bills for things that have to be replaced on an emergency basis.
Once you are pre-qualified, don't start changing things! Keep the same job, don't buy a new car or add new credit cards. Don't use a chunk of money to pay down credit card bills if you need that money for down payment or closing costs. If you receive gift money, make sure you can track the source of the gift. The worse thing would be to tell the realtor/seller that you're pre-qualified for $xx, make an offer that is accepted and then have your actual loan denied. Keep in mind that right before the closing, the lender will check again on your employment and pull another credit report, so keep paying all debts and don't take on any new ones until after the closing-after you've checked your budget again and you're sure you can afford it!
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1 vote 44 answers Share Flag
Wed Jan 13, 2016
Mayurika_amin answered:
Thank you I will check it out.
0 votes 2 answers Share Flag
Fri Mar 27, 2015
Ricky Ablaza answered:
Hi Scuderoo2010,

Call me (408-316-0793) or email ( and I can explain the entire process to you. Thanks
0 votes 4 answers Share Flag
Fri Mar 27, 2015
Ricky Ablaza answered:
Hi Julie Wyss,

Yes, Cambrian would be a good investment area. Just make sure you have all your numbers down pat. If you need help to analyze the deal call (408-316-0793) or email ( me and I would be more than glad to help you.

I have done several flips for my investors.

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0 votes 2 answers Share Flag
Sat Dec 6, 2014
Sam Shueh answered:
Fri Jun 6, 2014
Mike Kenyon answered:
It does in this manner... If there were two homes exactly the same and priced exactly the same and one had a pole in the back and one didn't which home would you buy. The one without the pole, so yes it does influence value. ... more
1 vote 9 answers Share Flag
Fri Jun 6, 2014
Mike Kenyon answered:
0 votes 20 answers Share Flag
Fri Jun 6, 2014
Mike Kenyon answered:
I can help you! Feel free to reach out to me and I will let you know who I have used before.
1 vote 6 answers Share Flag
Wed May 14, 2014
Julie Wyss answered:
You are considering two very different options. What you choose depends upon your lifestyle and what you personally are looking for in a home.

Cambrian offers great schools, a suburban feel and a home with which you can do what you please inside and out. The town home offers an easy commute and accessibility to shops and entertainment (Mercado, Great America, new stadium, etc.) One is low key, the other much more 'lively'. I'd suggest figuring out what is most important to you and what fits best in your lifestyle. ... more
0 votes 9 answers Share Flag
Tue Mar 25, 2014
You need to contact a local contractor for this. No contractors on this site. Just send me an email if you have any further questions.

Alex Greer
Loan Officer
NMLS #1056079
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0 votes 2 answers Share Flag
Thu Jun 20, 2013
Terri Vellios answered:
Before making any buying decisions, you should always check with the district office yourself to be sure that they are not impacted nor have changed any boundaries.
0 votes 2 answers Share Flag
Mon Apr 8, 2013
Travis Jackson answered:
These are very good investments. They have a huge potential to go up in vale and would rent quickly as well.

Travis Jackson
Century 21 M & M Associates
(408) 316-5954

DRE# 01879566
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0 votes 1 answer Share Flag
Thu Feb 7, 2013
Willow Glen Place condo owner answered:
I have lived in Willow Glen Place for 3+ years and I love it. I was a bit leary about the area too at first (coming from Los Altos) and there have been some security problems, but I believe that is indicative of San Jose in general. If you're looking for a pristine surrounding area where everyone looks the same and is in the same socioeconomic strata as you, better to buy in Los Altos. Oh wait....this quality and design in Los Altos would cost easily twice as much! The area is consistently improving and the center across the street is coming along as well. A new Rite Aid just opened in the center and new townhomes are being built in the southwest corner. Blue Rock BBQ is a terrific family owned restaurant in the center. Panda Express and Subway are nothing to get excited about, but convenient. Now only if the Hometown Buffet would move. The pluses: 1) Toll Bros. quality and design (I"m on the 3rd floor and have 10 ft. ceilings-everyone raves about my place) 2) the community feel and friendly neighbors. I was on my own when I moved in and wanted to be able to rely on neighbors in a pinch and not be isolated at home. There is a social network that plans summer parties. There are residents who have formed book clubs, water aerobics and other activities. 3) The location, while not smack dab in the middle of Willow Glen, is close to downtown Willow Glen, Los Gatos, Santana Row, Oakridge Shopping Center, downtown San Jose, Campbell and the 85 and 280 freeways. There's a Target down the street, cheap gas on the corner, and I have even discovered some surprising wine bargains at Grocery Warehouse (a market I would never have checked out had it not been next door). Good luck on your search. ... more
1 vote 11 answers Share Flag
Mon Jun 4, 2012
J answered:
I am going to urge more caution on this one. Seven days is an awfully short window for an inspection contingency. Inspections often call for further inspections, so you want to include that too. In addition, now that the summer moving season is in full swing, inspectors are busier than ever! Most escrow periods do not discriminate between business days and calendar days, so be sure to take that into consideration. ... more
0 votes 6 answers Share Flag
Wed May 30, 2012
J answered:
The market is competitive at that price point, but if you and your agent stay on top of listings in the area, chances are excellent for you to find a family-friendly neighborhood. After all, we're all in the same crazy boat of high California real estate prices! Please let me know if you would like any assistance in your search for a new home. ... more
0 votes 4 answers Share Flag
Sun Jan 24, 2010
Christine answered:
There are a lot of accidents at the intersection here! Lived close bye for over 10 years and seen and heard more crashes than I can remember. People just do not seem to pay attention right there. ... more
0 votes 5 answers Share Flag
Sun Nov 1, 2009
Iamvitamin asked:
For now, the two bed rooms are around 499K. Do you think it's a good price for future investment? Seems HOA is too expensive but condo itself looks very good. Is it worthy to buy? Do…
0 votes 0 Answers Share Flag
Mon Sep 7, 2009
Mary Pope-Handy answered:
This home is "sale pending" and is currently unavailable, but it's a great question generally in terms of the Alta Vista neighborhood, pricing, and how much work should you plan on doing (and the costs of it). In my answer I'll address the first question of this house, touch on this area and finally "how much should you spend?".

(1) The list price offered on this house didn't strike me as too high for the neighborhood. In fact, it is on the low side, taking into account that some updating would be needed.

(2) The Alta Vista neighborhood is perenially popular. The reasons are many: it's scenic (at the base of Blossom Hill), it has two great schools very close by (no need to cross any major streets to get to them), it's a neighborhood where everyone keeps up their home and yard, and it's tree lined to boot (most streets).

One agent said that there are "no issues" in the area, which actually isn't true. (There are probably NO neighborhoods which can claim that.) A few of the issues are (see the reference URL below for a complete article on this specific neighborhood): high voltage power lines bisect the neighborhood, running between Coronet & Blossom Valley Dr, there are some (possibly many) homes with foundation issues due to poor management of water flow off of the hill and off of their roofs, there's a small earthquake fault that cuts through one corner of the area, and there are some road noise issues if your home is too close to any of the three roads nearby (esp Blossom Hill Road).

Don't be put off by the negatives - just realize that they are there, just like there are negatives in any neighborhood. You may or may not think that being adjacent to the power lines is a big deal, for instance. It will be for some. But others will say, "look, I have a more private backyard" and "I can use part of that easement for a garden - it's like having a 10,000 SF lot".

(3) What about a first time buyer: should you buy a property that needs work? Or should you only buy the fully remodeled or brand new home?

It depends on you, your financing, and your tolerance for construction projects and your tolerance for working in an older kitchen, among other things.

If your top priority is gaining equity, you'll buy an ugly house with "good bones" and improve it (either before you move in or over time). If you have to buy the fully remodeled, perfect home, there's a good chance (in many price ranges) that this will catapult you into a multiple offer situation in which you may have to bid the home up to get it away from everyone else. It is very difficult to both get the perfect home and to not risk overpaying in today's market in the lower price ranges.

There are loan programs out there which can enable you to borrow more than just the purchase price of the home if you are going to do improvements prior to moving in (such as replacing the furnace, water heater, kitchen appliances). As your lender about this.

Most homes are neither fully original nor fully remodeled. Most homes are "somewhat remodeled". To get them into shape to pass inspections (there's not really a pass/fail grade, it's more like items of concern), most homes will require some work. Sellers don't usually know that they have termites, for instance. Treating pests, correcting issues with electrical, roof, etc. can often run 1 - 3% of the purchase price. This is really in the range of normal.

Then the only question is this: who will pay that 1 - 3%? I will discuss this on my Live in Los Gatos blog today.

Mary Pope-Handy
Luxor Real Estate Group,
408 204-7673
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