Mountain View/Palo Alto. Need: 3bed/2bath detached home. <600K. GREAT schools, family oriented area. Is it possible? (Have home in OC to rent

Asked by Nancy, 92626 Mon Dec 12, 2011

out) I would like to buy the cheapest house in the best neighborhood. I have two small children in elementary school, so somewhere in a good/safe area is a must. I have a home now in OC, that I will keep. I am hoping to take advantage of any short sales or foreclosures. I have excellent credit with fico ~790 . Getting finance will not be an issue. Need a yard, but doesn't have to be big. I am not working with a realtor YET..... just wanted to feel who is out there and what is out there first. Looking to move potentially in Q2 2012. Not afraid doing some work on the house before move in. I just want to make sure we are getting the best value for our home.

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Paz Bar-am’s answer
Paz Bar-am, Agent, Sunnyvale, CA
Sun Mar 4, 2012
As most people say the most important in Real property is Location, Location, and Location. A home is defined by four major categories. The first category is the location, which city or neighborhood the house is located in and on what terrains. The second is how much funding a buyer is looking to put into the purchase of the home. The third is lot size. The fourth is the home specific features which include the interior, # bed, # bathes, home size, etc. The fist three are not changeable by the new owner but the fourth option is changeable. Which means that you can buy a house in good school district, on a smaller lot somewhat dated and by a method of compromising you can find a house in that location that will be affordable and in the future with some investment you can change it to the house of your dreams.
Let me know what you think,
Paz
Web Reference:  http://www.pazbreal.com
0 votes
Kendrick Kwan, Agent, Los Altos, CA
Thu Dec 15, 2011
You're very welcome Nancy! Looking forward to meeting you in Q2 and would be happy to interview with you then. I've also done area tours for clients so if you are ever up here, let me know and I can show you and your family around. Or, if you're looking to rent to get to know the area before you buy, I can assist with that too. Please feel free to email or call me with any additional questions or concerns you may have and I'll be more than happy to help!
Web Reference:  http://www.kendrickkwan.com
1 vote
Tina Lam, Agent, San Jose, CA
Thu Dec 15, 2011
Nancy,

For under $600K, you won't be able to get into the best schools in Mountain View or Palo Alto. Those neighborhoods start above $1M for a small 1100 sqft home. You might be able to get into the best schools for south and west San Jose for under $600K and that's a stretch too.

In Palo Alto, you'd be lucky to get a lot of land for $700K in an acceptable neighborhood. I've seen an occasional deal come up once or twice a year for an old bank-owned house right about $700K, but those require all cash to win. Houses as you described generally start in the $800K range.

If you can accept average to decent schools, there are a few houses in Mountain View that may fit your needs which come up from time to time. I came across 2 good ones in the last 6 months but those went quickly. And yes, you would still have to do some work, probably in the $20K-$40K range for houses right below $600K. Bank owned and short sale properties may save you another $30K-$50K, but you'll likely have to put about half of that right back as additional renovations. Still, if you're able to get any one of those, you're definitely getting a great value for the area.

Kendrick is right on when he said he'll have to keep an eye on the market for you. For what you're looking for, it takes the meticulous eye of a pure-bred bargain hunter to score a such a deal. If you'd like, I can work with you to start the hunt.
Web Reference:  http://www.archershomes.com
1 vote
Kendrick Kwan, Agent, Los Altos, CA
Thu Dec 15, 2011
Hi Nancy,

In Mountain View, for a single family home under $600K with pretty good schools, you're most likely going to be looking in the area east of Central Expy, north of Whisman Rd, South of San Antonio Rd and West of W. Middlefield Rd. Currently, there isn't much inventory there now but I can help keep an eye out for you. But I can send you some past sold properties to give you a feel of what you can get for the price and can also send you a link to school API scores. Unfortunately Palo Alto will be nearly impossible to find something in that price range. Send me your contact and we can talk more about it. My email is kkwan@kendrickkwan.com. Talk to you soon!

Kendrick
1 vote
Robert Lei, Agent, Cupertino, CA
Mon Feb 20, 2012
Hi Nancy, if you can boost your price range to $800k, I have a single-family home listing in a very convenient section of Mountain View that is asking just $778k. It's a 3bed/2.5bath detached home. The schools are decent, but GREAT is a relative term. Chatting with neighbors you'll find that the local school has mostly good teachers but it is true that some of the teachers aren't as good as the others. It's a family oriented area. I knocked on a hundred doors in the neighborhood and found many to be professionals with young kids. The home is very safe. The house is tucked away at the end of a long driveway, so far away from the road. Let me know when you are up in the area. If this house is not available anymore, I could help with others.
0 votes
Nancy, Home Seller, 92626
Thu Dec 15, 2011
Thanks Tina & Kendrick. I am looking for around Q2 and am patient. I knew 600k-ish would be a stretch. Could definitely jump it to 800K range if sold our current home with about 50% down. I am still working out some information, details, etc. I appreciate your responses and insight. It shows me that both of you are not afraid to deliver not so good news and provide alternatives. I'm glad my inquiry didn't scare you two away. wanted to see who would "bite" and I wanted those that were confident enough in what they do and what they can provide. I will absolutely be in touch with both of you when we're ready for the move. My absolute must... very good schools. I actually take my kids to private now, so I'm not opposed to that as well as an option, but must be near by and have a strong academic records.
0 votes
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