Home Buying in 95054>Question Details

Buyer123456, Home Buyer in 95054

How is the appreciateion expected for buying a home in fremont vs cupertino high school area?

Asked by Buyer123456, 95054 Tue Oct 11, 2011


we are looking to buy a home in good school districts and we have cupertino/fremont in mind.
1. can some one explain me the pros/cons of buying in cupertino vs fremont?
2. With very good api scores in fremont, why are the home prices way less than cupertino area? will they appreciate in the future?
3. Also I have noticed that town homes in rivermark are expensive than SFR in fremont good school areas. Is it because of the rivermark homes being new vs fremont homes being old?
4. If so, cupertino even though they are 40 yr old homes they are still priced more than the fremont homes. why is that?


Help the community by answering this question:


In an upswing economy the depressed neighborhoods will first and see higher appreciation and most expensive neighborhoods will experience less. During the last cycle, homes in Evergreen, Morgan Hill etc moved up about 15%+ while Saratoga, Cupertino, LA only enjoyed ~5% annually. During the dot com days, Cupertino home prices dropped 10% while SJ did not move much(2-3%). ~100,000+ area high tech workers went without work.

However, during a downturn such as what we had experienced, the neighborhood which had higher income seems to HOLD ON to its value more. This cycle it did not impact these areas 'cause internet industry is mature. APPL etc did not let employees go as they have done before.

Put it bluntly, what makes you think only these areas will appreciate if places like PA also experienced 10% home price erosion since 2006?

People who want to live close to their jobs will have to pay more. If there are more firms in Fremont then homes are more desirable. If companies move to Coyote Valley then MH will be more desirable. Just for the record, few people realize some Gilroy neighborhood has even better API than any areas described.
Web Reference: http://sam.shueh.net/
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Nov 20, 2011
Hi Buyer123456

Frankly, you will do better in Cupertino longer term than Fremont, as it is very central
to silicon valley from where one can commute to South San Fran for work or Morgan Hill .
Cupertino is coveted and people from all over the world clamor to buy there and get into
the schools.

Also key companies such as Apple, Google etc are located in Cupertino or Mountain View.

Rivermark is a new community with Don Callejon elementary. The schools in Santa Clara
have improved.

Good luck, let me know if we can help.

Best regards
P Mistry

0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Nov 7, 2011
Cupertino is more centrally located to high-tech employment. Fremont is a tough commute sometimes.

Cupertino is surrounded by other good school districts. Fremont has some other cities nearby that aren't quite as good and could someday affect Fremont.

Rivermark homes are very convenient to high-tech employment. Also, some people really like that community.

40yr old houses tend to have been established in the more desirable locations. New homes tend to be squeezed into the "leftover" areas that have not been taken yet. It makes sense that whoever chooses first will choose the best locations and whoever chooses last will only have what is left over to choose from.

All this being said, if Fremont is what you can afford and Cupertino is out of your reach right now, then Fremont is a fine area. Just buy a Fremont home that is farther away from surrounding "not as good" school districts. That way you are less likely to have the "not as good" elements seep into your neighborhood 10-15 years from now.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Nov 1, 2011
Hello Buyer123456

It is a most common question any of the Bay area buyers would be coming up with. It is very simple to say but lots of study and research to be done on personal preference as every person’s preferences are different.

If you are talking about the Mission San Jose Vs. Cupertino High School area properties which are on higher end of the market as of now. Cupertino area is closer to some of big companies' head quarter. Whereas some of the Mission San Jose School district properties are built on the nice hills. To my knowledge pros and cons are all an individual based because as I mentioned the choice and taste differs. It matters at the end of the day whether you are living in your dream house or not? Everything is based on demand and supply when it comes to the matter of appreciation. Some prefer to live closer to where they work (keeping the commute in mind) and some wants to live in a house where they have a beautiful view of the city.

As when you are comparing the Rivermark area properties Vs. Fremont area properties: Rivermark area properties are not just newer constructions but also pretty close to various IT industries (commute is a major factor here). When you are thinking about the older houses in Cupertino is higher priced than other areas, there is a dual factor effecting: one is it is closer to the big IT industries and the other is Schools API. If you are more concerned about the Schools and new properties and not much to do with your commute to the work place, better bet is San Ramon or Dublin where the API scores of the schools is almost on par with the above mentioned two area and the houses are brand new.

Hope I answered the questions to your satisfaction.
Web Reference: http://www.visoochi.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Oct 22, 2011
1. Supply and demand. In general, west side of SJ is closer to business center . Job growth will still come from west.
2. Alameda County or East Bay has higher unemployment. Some neighborhoods have issues to keep the price stable to say the least. For underwater statistics by zip code see my blog.
3. Jobs are nearby. You answered the other factor already.
4. See #1. Apple headquarter is designated to be on Tantau. It is prudent to state the immediate neighborhood will have generate a lot of interest if not speculations.
Web Reference: http://sam.shueh.net/
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Oct 22, 2011
1. Supply and demand. In general, west side of SJ is closer to bulk to business.
2. Alameda County or East Bay in general has higher unemployment. Some neighborhoods have issues to keep the price stable to say the least.
3. Jobs are nearby.
4. See #1. Apple headquarter is designated to be on Tantau. It is prudent to state the immediate neighborhood will have generate a lot of interest if not speculation.
Web Reference: http://sam.shueh.net/
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Oct 22, 2011

a) Is demand only factor which drives prices higher in cupertino
Demand is definitely a key component. Commute to tech hub of Apple, HP and others makes it a highly desirable area as well of course, recognized schools. Many relocation clients simply go to Cupertino first because if they are not familiar with the area, they know they have a short commute and great schools. IMHO, Cupertino itself is one of the best examples of urban sprawl in our area. Not very walkable, lots of franchise based food and retail (although more ethnic diverse restaurants are making headway) and triangulated by three highways. But, based on Apple's recent decision to build a new campus I don't see the desire for Cupertino going away anytime soon.

b) are there any factors other than shorter commute and demand which differentiates east bay and peninsula
Prestige? Commute to San Francisco (although that is a perception not reality because of East Side Bart). More greenery? East Hills are nice but brown most of the time. West Hills provide more green feel?

c) Any other major factors which differentiates peninsula from east bay living. Both sides have some incredible public parks and open space which really make them great places to live. Proximity to other walkable hubs goes to the peninsula (Mtn View, Palo Alto, Stanford, Los Altos etc...) But big houses in more affordable ranges goes to the East Bay. Get away from the hustle and bustle could go to either peninsula or East Bay anytime you get up in the "hills". I am not sure, but I believe the property taxes for Alameda County may be less than Santa Clara? Transfer taxes on purchase may vary (Fremont no transfer tax but many Santa Clara County cities do.) Also look at who is responsible for paying what in a closing transaction. Alameda - buyer pays escrow title (customary) whereas Santa Clara seller pays.

Hope that helps.
Web Reference: http://www.TalkToCJ.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Oct 12, 2011
Visiting the neighborhoods and the stores surrounding the neighborhoods can assist you in deciding if you want to live amongst the people. You can size up your surroundings quite well that way. I am not a proponent of knocking on neighbors doors. If you a first knocker you may get a difference answer than third knocker. Visiting the grocery store tells you enough about your neighbors. You have to ask yourself, why are you buying? Investment, quality of life,family needs,long term/short term, friend base, true lifestyle. The atmosphere of the Peninsula is decidedly different than the atmosphere of Fremont. And yes, it does make a difference of $400K. And when the market is hot, it makes an even bigger difference. It is a decision to weigh over many personal factors. Every buyer goes through the same exercise of finding the balance of what works for their lifestyle. I typically advise my buyers on location. Not just city, but definitive area, and exact property. Ultimately it is the choice of the buyer. Establishing your priorities that fall under school will help you come to your answer. Your Realtor should be walking you through all those steps with each property you visit. It exemplifies the need for an experienced Realtor who has your best interest . Not someone you hire just to write a contract. Penny-wise becomes pound foolish. If you don't have a Realtor that you trust yet. Find one. It's part of their job to help you move through this exploratory phase to find the most perfect home for you and your family.

Angela White
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Oct 12, 2011
Hi again, Considering the proportional relationship of risk vs reward, to the degree Real Estate investment is a risk Cupertino would be a blue chip compared to an IPO. I mean to show that Cupertino experiences little to no boom/bust affect. Quite an anomaly over the course of the last 20 years.

I am uncertain why many people still regard Fremont as an industrial area but, they do. There are many comfortable and established neighborhoods there.

When Cupertino is mentioned the common opinions are great schools and expensive Real Estate. These are the first impressions I have become accustomed to hearing.

Where Fremont suffers is the large disparity of neighborhood conditions within close proximity to one another.. Adding the numerous light industrial areas does not add any value either.

Fremont should be considered by determining the select neighborhood first. It is a sprawling area and a Wente/Mission home is quite different than an Alverado Niles home. I think you have made that decision though.

The peninsula has historically proven to be more valuable based on environment , more trees, hills and perceived affluence. Atherton, Stanford, Palo Alto, Los Altos, Woodside, Hillsboro etc... I can't say Fremont /East Bay have the provenance.

Since you have made good choices already.... Can I safely assume you have made many, many drives to both areas at different times of the day and days of the week? Those drives will give you a sense of how you personally feel about the school commute, walk score, and neighborhood conditions.

An example would be where you find the neighbor across the street has 3 driving age teenagers that park in front of you chosen home every evening...exactly... where you want to park or a neighbor that works nights, takes their dog to work every night but, the poor dog barks all morning until the mail man finishes delivery.

Any links I find are all so...chamber of commerce. I would advise you to visit the areas and the establishments you may be frequenting as well as a little door knocking with your Realtor. Meet your potential neighbors. I am always amazed at how 'visits' can expand reasoning.

You must be getting excited! :)

0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Oct 12, 2011
Thanks alot for the replies and from the below answers, I think I might need to be more precise in providing explanation

I have narrowed down to buy SFR (3 bed, 2.5 bath) both in cupertino area (Lincoln elementary, Kennedy Middle, Montavista high) and fremont area (mission san jose elementary area). As i stay in south bay, I am trying to understand how exactly east bay is different

.Price difference is more than 400k on these properties (exact feature set)
a) Is demand only factor which drives prices higher in cupertino
b) are there any factors other than shorter commute and demand which differentiates east bay and peninsula c) Any other major factors which differentiates peninsula from east bay living.
Links will be appreciated. I will try to contact ppl who responded to thread too
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Oct 12, 2011
I believe that your budget for expectation and needs will dictate which community fits you and your family (I assume family since you asked about schools).

Communities are relative. If the area prices appreciate by a certain percentage you will find that Cupertino value will be more. Example a 10% increase in a million dollar home is $100,000 and on a $600,000 Fremont home that would be $60,000. However, the lower value homes may not appreciate at the same percentage and this changes with the market. Higher demand communities, such as Cupertino drops slower and rises quicker.

I know that a lot of first time home buyers believe that a NEW or NEWER home should appreciate more and be worth more than an older home. We are not talking about cars here when they devalue the day you drive them off the lot. The rule hasn't changed LOCATION-LOCATION-LOCATION! You can improve the inside of a home but you can not pick it up and move it to a better location, nor can you grow the size of the lot or expand a home by much.

Review your budget with what your buying power is, decided what is the most important factor for buying a home and then pull together your team to help you achieve that goal.

All the best to you.
Web Reference: http://terrivellios.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Oct 11, 2011
Hi Buyer123456, The simple answer to your questions are as follows...

1. Pros and Cons are buyer specific rather than a direct comparison....Having been raised here, I will try to help.
2. The API scores in some Fremont areas are very good, however a demographic difference based on resources has directly driven Cupertino home prices up. Add a pinch of natural beauty of the nearby Azules.
3. Rivermark is newer, yes. The area attracts buyers who readily enjoy bustling, active and more populated areas with the addition of more quick mass transit options to the Silicon Valley employment centers.
4. Cupertino rises above Fremont when a buyer wants high API scores with the addition of short solo commutes and a private suburban lifestyle.

The above answers are based on my personal observations, over my lifetime here, with the added input from clients who have made their opinions very clear during consultations.

Hope that gives you a new perspective that helps you broaden your understanding. If I can be of any assistance with the other import factors you will be considering please don't hesitate to call on me.

0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Oct 11, 2011
Regarding CJ's answer. It is possible to broadbase an answer when two communities are entirely different. It is definitely understood that when talking about 2 distinct communities such as Fremont and Cupertino, there are well known differences between the two. Value is not primarily based upon schools however, that is significant. When you have two communities that appear to have similar ranked schools you do have to ask the question why is one area considered to be more valuable than the other? In this instance, it is lifestyle;proximity to work,proximity to entertainment,proximity to culture,proximity to likeminded people, and inventory. Since Fremont properties are overall less in price than Cupertino, and since Cupertino prices really only took a one year recession hit rather than a continued recession hit on value, you can make inferences that Cupertino is a better investment area than Fremont not related to the difference in schools. In addition, the average price of a Cupertino school district home in its individual school assignment overall represents a much much higher average value than Fremont. Cupertino is not just considered West, it is considered Cupertino. You would be surprised to find $1M homes right next door to $2.5M but they exist and sell here quickly because it is Cupertino.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Oct 11, 2011
Buyer -

Real estate appreciations, +/- of communities and schools are so very local that a broad brush of comparisons is difficult. There really is no way to provide and "apple to apple" comparison with the information you provided here but a house to house comparison could be completed with any professional agent. In my opinion, what Angela refers to is more a lifestyle/community decision more than just an appreciation comparison. You can have a good school home/neighborhood in Fremont that may appreciate more than a similar one on the West side and visa versa. In general, I think most believe Pennisula homes appreciate faster/more(?) but I am not sure that is correct. It is too general to be accurate.

Web Reference: http://www.TalkToCJ.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Oct 11, 2011
The primary reason for the difference in appreciation and home value pricing with Fremont vs. Cupertino is Cupertino is Peninsula living and Fremont is East Bay living. East Bay living has lower appreciation because it is a different lifestyle. Those willing to live in Fremont are willing to live in many other communities. Those wanting to live in Cupertino, only want to live in Cupertino.

Pros and Cons I will be happy to explain to you in person.

Answer 3 is no, not really, as there are older townhomes in Rivermark area. It is proximity to Peninsula living which is entirely different than East Bay living.
If you are ready to purchase, I have an 3 available client openings in my schedule at the moment.

Angela White
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Oct 11, 2011
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