Home Buying in 94536>Question Details

Jennifer, Other/Just Looking in Union City, CA

I saw this cute little home on the other side of the train tracks from Riverwalk in Fremont, which is going

Asked by Jennifer, Union City, CA Wed Feb 13, 2008

on the market soon. I am worried about the trains though, how much of a problem could the trains be? How much should i think lower than the list price cause of the trains. The elementary school is great though. Or should i wait and watch?

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Don't do it! Train tracks are in Real Estate Appraisal terms called a "nuisance", with the choked up Bay area roads, they are only going to add more and more traffic on the rail road tracks! A nuisance generally would devalue a home from 60 to 80K! but in a down/declining market you might as well triple that! If it is the ONLY way you can afford to get into a SFR in a neighborhood you desire well then there is always surround sound speakers! Good luck, Jeff Brewer* 510-608-7619* Fremont* Coldwell Banker.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Apr 25, 2008
Hello Jennifer,

Well, homes close to railroad tracks are obviously not very desirable and even if it does not bother you too much, it will bother most buyers. When you are going to sell, you need to keep that in mind and the pool of buyers you will have then will be a lot less than another home not close to the tracks. Even when there is a wall between the tracks and the house, most buyers have a problem being close to the the tracks for the noise factor, Even though the noise may not be bad inside (Dual paned windows, etc.) when you are in the yard, it can be loud.

i had a house in Union City listed for 5 months before I got an offer. We reduced it 80K before it sold. It was right across from the railroad tracks and even though there were several showings from realtors, they all had the same comment that the railroad tracks being so close was the reason the buyer did not want to buy that house.

Hope my answer is helpful. If I can answer any other questions, please call me at 510-279-9580


Meena Gujral
40083 Mission Blvd
Fremont, Ca. 94639
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Apr 24, 2008
I cannot tell by your question how close the house is to the train tracks. In addition to doing all as advised below, I would also recommend that you contact both the town building department and whoever is in charge of the train service. You want to know if there are any projects planned in the near future that may impact this area.

Based on the name of the town 'Riverwalk' it sounds like the tracks might run along a river.

I live near the Hudson River in New York. Many developers like to build on the river and communities like to try to build park-land on the river for the public to enjoy. For this reason I say check with the town.

We also have a train running along the river (yes, "The Hudson River Line" made famous in the Billy Joel song "New York State of Mind").

Increased population can lead to Metro-North adding more trains to the daily service. Sometimes overpasses need to be built, tracks need to be corrected, etc... All of this can possibly lead to more noise and disruption than you wish to live with. Also, how are the trains powered? 3rd rail, overhead powerlines, diesel fuel? How is that impacting the area? What safeties are in place to avoid someone from wandering onto the tracks?

Just make sure you do your due diligence and ask all the questions so you are well informed when you make your decision.

Best of luck!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Feb 13, 2008
The home may have double paned windows and may filter out the noise, many builders are using them especially when noise may inhibit sales. Here is a great link for school information by zip code and also a great source for demographic information by communities (free) -

Let me know if you are interested in scheduling a home tour!

Joe Stan
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Feb 13, 2008
Hi Jennifer;
I tell all my clients who are interested in buying a home to investigate the area, even if there is not such an obvious problem, like a train. Go to the house at different times during the day to see what it is like to live near the trains. If you can, interview some of the neighbors, and get their opinions.
This os going to be a huge investment. You should take special care in investigating all the ramifications. Trains that may not bother others may annoy you, so you must check it out yourself.
Work with a Realtor, and when the time comes, see if there is competition for the house. After all your investigations you will know whether you should go for it or wait.

Eric H Wong
Prudential California Realty
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Feb 13, 2008

If the listing agent did his or her job right, the listing price will already take in account the impact of train noise. Market values tend to be lower for homes near train tracks. Make sure you look at the comps for the area and get a professional opinion from a local Realtor.

Web Reference: http://www.TalkToCJ.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Feb 13, 2008
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