Almaden Valley (SJ)

How's The Luxury Home Market?Luxury home sales are going like crazy in the west valley areas of Santa Clara County. Right now in Almaden Valley, Los Gatos, Monte Sereno and Saratoga, there are 105 houses for sale listed at or more than two million dollars (just checked MLSListings.com), and in the last 30 days 56 have sold and closed escrow in those same areas and price ranges. For the Almaden – Saratoga region generally, then, there are 1.88 months of inventory in the over two million dollar price range (105/56). That makes it a strong seller’s market. Things have certainly livened up a lot since October. (In the same region, there are 25 pending sales.)

Next we’ll look at these four Silicon Valley communities separately to see how the luxury market in each one is faring overall.

Almaden Valley (San Jose, 95120)

Currently in Almaden there are 9 houses for sale which are listed at or over $2,000,000.  In the last 30 days, 8 sold in that price range (with two sales pending). That makes for just over 1.13 “months of inventory.” That would mean this luxury market has rapid turnover and is in a strong seller’s market. It’s a deep seller’s market in Almaden Valley among the most expensive real estate offerings for sale. Five to six months is balanced and over six is a buyer’s market. Continue reading

Almaden Valley homes for sale and real estate market conditionsThe Almaden Valley real estate market is still in a stable sellers market. Winter brought about a steep drop in inventory. There must be either a lot more inventory, or significantly less demand, before we see anything close to a balanced market. The Almaden Valley market is noticing minor softening, with homes selling, on average, close to list price at 100.9%. Turnover has dropped slightly to an average of 18 days on market (or DOM). This tells us that while there may be a slight cooling trend, Almaden Valley is in a sustained, hot sellers market.

Please find the current statistics for single family homes (houses & duet homes) from my Almaden Valley real estate report (click on link for more info).

You might notice things look a little different. The REReport page has been updated to improve load time and give mobile viewers a better experience. With the update, the Sales At A Glance (the bullet points) section and both Short Sales and Foreclosures have been dropped, but Days of Inventory has been added and if you click the link you will find a new kind of market commentary available. It will take a little while to clean up some quirks in the new system, so each area might have some things missing, but expect them to return soon! Thank you for your patience.

Almaden Valley San Jose 95120 Real Estate Statistics At A Glance

The data shows a strong sellers market remaining fairly consistent despite increasing inventory. The best homes will still see multiple offers, a response to low inventory and high demand.

Altos Research charts for houses in Almaden (San Jose 95120)

Please note that Altos Research uses list prices of Almaden Valley homes for sale, not sold prices.

An overview:

90-day stats for Single Family properties in
SAN JOSE, CA 95120 as of July 14, 2017
Median List Price:$1,585,654Average List Price:$1,930,661
Total Inventory:27Price per Square Foot:$605
Average Home Size:2,673Median Lot Size:9,162
Average # Beds:4.41Average # Baths:3.24
Homes Absorbed:8Newly Listed:8
Days on Market:37Average Age:37

Real Estate Market Chart by Altos Research www.altosresearch.com

Continue reading

Located close to the Guadalupe Creek and the foothills of the coastal mountain range, the Montevideo neighborhood enjoys tree lined streets and scenic green views of the hills. Houses and yards are nicely kept. It is fairly convenient for commuting as it’s not too deeply into the San Jose area of Almaden Valley. About 500 residents call this beautiful neighborhood home.

Montevideo nighborhood in San Jose's Almaden Valley area (zip code 95120)

The Montevideo Neighborhood in the Almaden Valley area of San Jose

Shuffle board area of Montevideo cabana

Shuffle board area of Montevideo cabana

In addition to the pleasant vistas, the Montevideo home owners and residents enjoy the cabaña, which includes a community pool, clubhouse, recreation grounds (shuffleboard, volleyball court and more), a fun swim team for kids. There are very few cabañas in the west valley, so this is a big draw.

Adjacent is the very highly regarded Guadalupe Elementary School, which can boast API scores in the 900s (it was 941 in the 2013 study). Continue reading

Oaktree Park Neighborhood in Almaden Valley area of San JoseThe Oaktree Park neighborhood in San Jose is a scenic residential community with wide appeal to home buyers due to good Almaden schools, close proximity to large parks and is one of only a few areas in Almaden Valley which includes a cabaña and swim team. Additionally, this area is very convenient as it’s close to schools, shops and commute routes to downtown San Jose and much of Silicon Valley. It is a fairly intimate neighborhood with 156 homes.

Where is the Oaktree Park neighborhood?

The Oaktree Park subdivision is within the boundaries of Meridian Avenue, Redmond Avenue and Mcabbe Road on three sides and the Jeffrey Fontana Park on the north side.

The census bureau (and perhaps also the city of San Jose) has attributed names to some parts of Almaden and this neighborhood falls into the Crossgates section. I do not believe that most residents refer to this area that way, though. Perhaps more likely they’d call it part of the greater Fontana Park neighborhood.

Oaktree Park Neighborhood in San Jose (Almaden Valley area of SJ)

Oaktree Park Neighborhood in San Jose (Almaden Valley area of SJ) – click on image above to go to live Google Map

What schools serve the Oaktree Park neighborhood in San Jose?

The public schools for Oaktree Park are within the San Jose Unified School District:

Los Alamitos Elementary School (API 935 in 2013)
Castillero Middle School (API 846 in 2013)
Pioneer High School (API 822 in 2013)

Los Alamitos Elementary and Holy Spirit Elementary (Catholic) are both just a couple of blocks from Oaktree Park. Additonally there are 2 preschools really close too: Precious Preschool and Shepherd of the Valley Lutheran Preschool.

For more information and links for schools, school districts, API scores and maps of boundaries lines for schools in the Almaden area of San Jose, please also read:

Schools, API Scores & Maps of School Boundaries in San Jose’s Almaden Valley

What are homes like in Oaktree Park?

Homes in Oaktree Park are single family dwellings – all detached houses (no townhouses or condominiums). These are primarily ranch style or two story ranch style houses, built in the early 1970s  on lots of about 8000 to 9000 square feet, though a few are more than that. Interior size runs between about 1600 square feet to about 3000 square feet (if added on). Prices may be in the mid 600s for a smaller home, needing work and a less desirable location (such as on a busy road or immediately adjacent to the high voltage power lines that run through the park) to perhaps a little over a million dollars for a beautifully updated or rebuilt larger home in an ideal location within the neighborhood. In the current market (June 2017), smaller homes are going between the mid $900s to the mid $1.1 million mark and larger homes are selling between $1.2-$1.3 million.

More information on the Oaktree Park neighborhood below!

Continue reading

Often I have clients who are interested in purchasing a 4 bedroom, 2 bath home in a good school district in Silicon Valley, particularly in the South Bay and West Valley areas. Tonight I did a study on the MLS of homes that have sold and closed escrow in the last 4 months with these characteristics:

  • single family home (house)
  • 4 bedrooms
  • 2 bathrooms
  • 1800 to 2200 square feet of living space
  • 6000 to 10,000 sf lot

Disclaimers aside, here are the numbers for select West Valley Communities in the West/South Bay area with good schools. The first number is the average sales price per square foot, the second number is the average sales price:

And a look at the chart from all back in 2015…

And all the way back in 2011. What’s changed? A lot! The order has shifted some, showing where demand has increased or decreased. Most noticeably, the prices are significantly lower in 2011 than they are now. The 2015 chart shows prices somewhere in-between the 2011 and 2017 levels. Palo Alto and Los Altos remain consistently in the top two positions.

The home prices tend to run with the school district API scores.  You can check the 2013, three year average, API scores in Santa Clara County for both the districts and the individual schools online here.         Continue reading

Cambrian, Almaden, and Los GatosIf a strong public high school is at the top of your priority list, you may find yourself looking at Los Gatos, Cambrian (area of San Jose), and Almaden (also in San Jose) – scenic areas along the southwest side of Silicon Valley, all of them featuring good to excellent high schools.   I would caution against only judging an area, or a school, by its scores, though – often the culture at the campus, the offerings, and many other things can vary from one school to the next.  Nothing beats visiting in person and talking with students, parents, faculty and staff.

2013 Growth API Scores

Disclaimers aside, scores do matter as an important part of the overall package.  How do the high schools in these areas stack up?  API scores are no longer used, so the numbers below are from the 2013 Growth API scores, the most current year available.

Ranked in order of API score:

Leland High – 889 (Almaden, southern area)

Los Gatos High – 883 (Los Gatos, central + small area in Almaden)

Leigh High – 833 (Los Gatos, east & Cambrian plus little of Almaden)

Pioneer High – 822 (Almaden, northern area & Cambrian)

Branham High – 810 (Cambrian & Blossom Valley)

Westmont High – 796 (Los Gatos, western area plus parts of Campbell and Saratoga)

What is the cost of homes in these areas?

To narrow it, let’s consider the same set of criteria: houses sold in the last 180 days within 1 mile of each high school named, with 3 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, and 1500 – 2000 SF. (I’m leaving lot sizes out because it’s already a very small pool of homes.) To make it super simple, I’ll just include the price per SF and the average sale price of these houses.

Ranked in order of affordability – average sale price:

Pioneer High – 822 API – average price per sf  $549.17  average sale price  $919,057  (9 houses)

Branham High – 810 API – average price per sf   $588.92 average sale price $969,295   (17 houses)

Leland High – 889 API – average price per sf   $616.04  average sale price  $1,071,250  (4 houses)

Leigh High – 833 API – average price per sf     $686.00  average sale price $1,144,100  (20 houses)

Westmont High – 796 API – average price per sf   $844.00  average sale price  $1,329,500 (8 houses)

Los Gatos High – 883 API – average price per sf   $917.95  average sale price $1,593,556 (9 houses)

Clearly, the market dictates that there are more than high school scores impacting home values (but you already knew that!).

Homes in the Leland High School area are a very good value, if you can find one (there were only 4, so too easy to have an impossibly small pool of choices).

Market drivers – beyond school scores

San Benito Way home in Los GatosDowntown Los Gatos is charming and historic (with loads of beautiful older homes and buildings), it enjoys a vibrant night life and restaurant scene. It’s interesting! It’s “walkable”!  People want to live in a part of Silicon Valley that isn’t just suburban sprawl – hence downtown LG has the biggest draw of all these areas.  It’s not too far from Highway 85 (think Apple) but it’s not boring, like most of San Jose can be.   Many are willing to pay much more to be part of Los Gatos and Los Gatos High School.  A nice townhouse in LG, or a house in Cambrian?  That may be the choice.

Commute times to places like Apple matter a lot, so homes on the west end of Los Gatos, in Campbell and parts of Saratoga in the Westmont HS area see a very high average sale price, even though the API score was less than 800.  Schools matter but they aren’t the only thing that matter. Many home owners believe that the most important part of the education is the parents’ involvement (at home and at school).  Many also have their kids at a private high school. Continue reading

House for saleIn a raging hot seller’s market such as we are experiencing today in Silicon Valley, home owners may be subject to some very costly temptations.

Home seller temptation # 1: overconfidence on the market

Because folks read about the dozens of offers on some homes, by extension, it’s easy to believe that every home sells, for top dollar, with no effort or planning on the part of the seller. This is a huge mistake. Perhaps we should even call it a myth since it may be commonly believed.

What, in today’s market, not every home is selling?

That’s right.  In the last 30 days, there have been 40 house listings on our MLS in Santa Clara County that expired (that is, the listing contract period ended with the house not selling).  Granted, about half of them (21 to be exact) were short sales. Additionally, though, there were other listings which were cancelled and more still which were withdrawn from the market.  These were all over San Jose and nearby cities and towns, including Los Gatos.

But wait, there’s more!  As of this moment – I’m logged onto MLSListings as I write this – there are 764 single family homes for sale which are not sale pending or under contract (again in SCC). The best homes, those which are well priced and marketed, I’m sure you know, sell within 2-3 weeks. Of the 764 houses and duet homes, 698 are “regular sales”. Of these non-distressed properties, how many do you think have been on the market for over 30 days?  Incredibly, 252 of them were listed on or before January 23, a month ago today. That’s 36% of available inventory which has been on the market for a month or more, a huge percentage given the real estate market conditions we’re seeing today.  Again, these are all over the county and in all price ranges.

This first temptation is the greatest one, and it often leads to mistakes in areas #2 and #3, listed below. Continue reading

Recently I’ve expanded my subscription to Altos Research – now you can sign up for my Altos newsletter and get information on any zip code in Santa Clara County (the San Jose area) sent to you each week. Altos uses list prices.

For sold info, please see my Silicon Valley Real Estate Report, which covers the cities and towns in Santa Clara County, San Mateo County, and Santa Cruz County (and is updated once a month) at popehandy.rereport.com The RE Report also has market data for areas within some cities such as San Jose (covering Almaden, Cambrian, Evergreen, Willow Glen, etc.), Mountain View, and Palo Alto. To view the RE Report for Almaden, please click here.

Below please find the Altos Research charts for the Almaden area of San Jose, which is zip code 95120. These charts will be automatically updated weekly. If you’d like to get this and more info by email each week, please sign up for the newsletter at the bottom.

Learn more about Almaden Valley here.

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SAN JOSE Real Estate Market (95120)



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Find market activity in the Almaden area of San Jose in the map below:

  1. 7 beds, 5 baths
    Home size: 3,700 sq ft
    Lot size: 2.34 ac
  2. 4 beds, 3 baths
    Home size: 2,621 sq ft
    Lot size: 10,959 sqft
  3. 5 beds, 3 baths
    Home size: 2,141 sq ft
    Lot size: 8,511 sqft
  4. 4 beds, 4 baths
    Home size: 3,127 sq ft
    Lot size: 1.63 ac
  5. 5 beds, 3 baths
    Home size: 2,324 sq ft
    Lot size: 13,068 sqft
  6. 4 beds, 3 baths
    Home size: 2,400 sq ft
    Lot size: 8,389 sqft
  7. 4 beds, 3 baths
    Home size: 2,496 sq ft
    Lot size: 8,049 sqft
  8. 4 beds, 3 baths
    Home size: 2,678 sq ft
    Lot size: 2.44 ac
  9. 3 beds, 1 bath
    Home size: 1,471 sq ft
    Lot size: 13,059 sqft
  10. 3 beds, 1 bath
    Home size: 1,447 sq ft
    Lot size: 13,211 sqft

See all Real estate in the Almaden Valley community.
(all data current as of 7/22/2017)

Listing information deemed reliable but not guaranteed. Read full disclaimer.

Everyone wants a good deal, and in this article I’ll be featuring great Silicon Valley real estate home buying opportunities.

Normally I don’t write about other agent’s listings, but the listing agent in this case is a friend of mine, Azita Alaverdi, and I have her permission to promote this home.  (Her site for it is:  http://21720calerocreekalmaden.com/ )

Today’s listing (10-25-2015) is a fantastic 15 year young Almaden Valley property close to Calero Reservoir.  Located at 21720 Calero Creek Court, this 4 bedroom, 3.5 bath home enjoys 4330 SF of living space set on over an acre.  It is mostly a one story home but there is one bed and one bath on an upper level.  Offered at $1,995,000, this home is a tremendous bargain!  (Price per SF cost is $460.74. – more typical might be $490 per SF.)

This property is a fantastic opportunity in a quiet, scenic location!  Looking to buy a luxury property in Almaden?  Give me a call – I’d love to help you to purchase this beautiful home!

Good deals don’t last – if you are interested, HURRY!

We're sorry, but we couldn't find MLS # 81516581 in our database. This property may be a new listing or possibly taken off the market. Please check back again.

How close is too close?  For people house hunting in Silicon Valley, the quality of local public schools is often a huge priority – in fact, it’s something that most home buyers insist upon even if they intend to enroll their kids in a parochial or other private school.  Similarly, most home buyers do not want to purchase a house, townhome or condo that’s too close to high voltage power lines. Sometimes it’s just a “resale issue” to them, but other times they have health concerns and not just real estate home value concerns.

But what about the relationship between public schools and these high voltage power lines?  If your child will be at school 35 hours a week for 9 months of the year, should that be a concern, too?  So far, only two of my buyers have made that a criteria – and when they did, it became apparent that most of the schools in the border areas of Los Gatos, Cambrian and Almaden were going to be eliminated.

A couple of years back, I mapped out the high voltage power lines using Google Maps (click on link to view it).  This morning I added a few public schools to it in a “layer”.  This is not comprehensive, as I only mapped a few in these three areas mentioned already in this article.  For the named schools, many are directly adjacent to the lines (Alta Vista, Union, Leigh, Noddin) usually on the far side of the playing field) and the furthest is about 1/5 of a mile from them (Carlton).

High Voltage Power lines in LG Cambrian Almaden

  1. 3 beds, 2 baths
    Home size: 1,356 sq ft
    Lot size: 8,637 sqft
  2. 3 beds, 3 baths
    Home size: 2,396 sq ft
    Lot size: 4,399 sqft
  3. 3 beds, 2 baths
    Home size: 1,275 sq ft
    Lot size: 6,934 sqft
  4. 3 beds, 2 baths
    Home size: 1,159 sq ft
    Lot size: 3,846 sqft
  5. 4 beds, 3 baths
    Home size: 1,782 sq ft
    Lot size: 6,499 sqft
  6. 4 beds, 2 baths
    Home size: 1,608 sq ft
    Lot size: 10,890 sqft
  7. 4 beds, 2 baths
    Home size: 1,868 sq ft
    Lot size: 5,998 sqft
  8. 3 beds, 2 baths
    Home size: 1,326 sq ft
    Lot size: 8,080 sqft
  9. 4 beds, 2 baths
    Home size: 1,830 sq ft
    Lot size: 12,501 sqft
  10. 3 beds, 2 baths
    Home size: 1,600 sq ft
    Lot size: 9,282 sqft

See all Real estate in the Cambrian community.
(all data current as of 7/22/2017)

Listing information deemed reliable but not guaranteed. Read full disclaimer.

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Mary Pope-Handy
Realtor
ABR, CIPS, CRS, SRES
Sereno Group Real Estate
214 Los Gatos-Saratoga Rd
Los Gatos, CA 95030
408 204-7673
Mary (at) PopeHandy.com
License# 01153805


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