Cambrian

Sketch of houseIt can be really challenging for people moving to Silicon Valley to get a sense of real estate prices, and perhaps more, to compare housing costs from one town or district to another.

One question I get a lot is this: what does it cost to buy a 4 bedroom, 2 bath house of about 2000 square feet?

So to answer this question, let’s see what houses like this are selling for (4 bed, 2 bath, appx 2000 SF or 185 square meters) and see how the cost looks in one Santa Clara Count y / Silicon Valley area versus another.

Today I compared several areas and cities using this criteria: single family homes of 1800 – 2200 SF, 3-5 bedrooms, 2-3 bathrooms, on lot sizes of 6000 SF to 10,000 SF. Normally I would chart this over the last 2 months, or 60 days, but because of the low inventory causing the sellers market I have expanded the search to the last 3 months, or 90 days, for a better range. As of this writing, Saratoga only had one sale over the last 90 days, so data for that segment may or may not be a good average.

Here’s how it shakes out in the “west valley areas” along the Highway 85 corridor, most of which are known to have good to great public schools. What areas are most affordable? One way of analyzing this is the “price per square foot” figure. Whenever I update the chart, I re-arrange the order of the cities from high to low based on the price per square foot, although there’s usually minimal movement.

To compare, here are the numbers from the this past January 26, 2017. There were fewer sales, so the search range was bumped up to 120 days instead of 90 days (and Los Altos was so low, it was individually searched at 180 days). You might notice price per square foot appears lower across the board in January compared to July. This is most likely because the market has heated up over spring and summer, which you can also see in the DOM.

Below are my results from the same search back in September 18, 2015. By comparison, you can tell that Santa Clara’s average Price has increased, pushing it above Almaden and Campbell.

How competitive is the market? Have a look at the DOM or “Days on Market” figure. All of these days on market are short, but they range from low to heart-skippingly fast.

In most cases, the priciest and most desirable places have either the best schools or shortest commute location or both (Palo Alto and Cupertino have both). Had I ranked these for school scores, you’d find that Cambrian is fairly high up and a good “bang for the buck” location – though not a super short commute for folks who work in Mountain View (though not so bad for people working in Cupertino).  Almaden, too, offers a good value for the quality of the schools, homes, and neighborhoods, though the commute is longer. None of these is especially close to North San Jose (where a major employer is Cisco).

It should also be noted that in some of the smaller communities with less on the market these numbers may not be as stable as others with more data – for instance, Los Altos only had four homes sold, the second lowest, matching this criteria within the 90 days of collected data, and therefore may not be as accurate as others, such as the Blossom Valley area of San Jose with the most data at 38 homes sold. For these smaller communities with less data, it is beneficial to look at them more closely – Saratoga, for instance, has 3 different high school districts which have an impact the real estate prices. This chart is really just a snapshot to give a general sense of the relative affordability of these markets to one another. Continue reading

The Santa Clara County real estate statistics for Single Family Homes

 Read the full report for houses and duet homes in Santa Clara County here (You can also access the stats for San Mateo and Santa Cruz Counties from here!)

Prices are up year over year after a prolonged, unrelenting sellers market. Inventory is almost half what it was a year ago, which is bad news for buyers – the market conditions can’t balance out without inventory to meet the demand!

Trends At a Glance Jun 2017 Previous Month Year-over-Year
Median Price $1,171,000 (-2.4%) $1,200,000 $1,050,000 (+11.5%)
Average Price $1,438,580 (-0.6%) $1,446,930 $1,330,430 (+8.1%)
No. of Sales 1,156 (+9.0%) 1,061 1,045 (+10.6%)
Pending 1,117 (-14.5%) 1,306 803 (+39.1%)
Active 788 (-16.4%) 943 1,381 (-42.9%)
Sale vs. List Price 105.9% (+0.1%) 105.8% 103.5% (+2.4%)
Days on Market 18 (-2.2%) 18 21 (-16.4%)
Days of Inventory 20 (-25.9%) 27 38 (-48.4%)

And the numbers from last month for comparison:

 

Trends At a Glance May 2017 Previous Month Year-over-Year
Median Price $1,200,000 (+3.4%) $1,160,000 $1,117,900 (+7.3%)
Average Price $1,446,930 (+1.2%) $1,429,430 $1,419,890 (+1.9%)
No. of Sales 1,061 (+27.4%) 833 962 (+10.3%)
Pending 1,306 (+10.8%) 1,179 963 (+35.6%)
Active 943 (+5.0%) 898 1,290 (-26.9%)
Sale vs. List Price 105.8% (-0.3%) 106.1% 104.4% (+1.3%)
Days on Market 18 (+5.9%) 17 19 (-6.2%)
Days of Inventory 27 (-14.7%) 31 40 (-33.7%)

Continue reading

1512 Santa Monica AVE San Jose CA 95124 - front right viewTastefully updated & remodeled throughout! 1512 Santa Monica Ave boasts hardwood and tile floors only! This beautiful and sunny Cambrian home sits along the Willow Glen Border and enjoys an open floor plan, ideal for entertaining! And it is move-in ready!

1512 Santa Monica Avenue, in the Cambrian area of San Jose:  Offered at $850,000

MLS # ML81670041

QUICK FACTS:

  • 3 bedrooms
  • 2 updated bathrooms
  • 1144 SF of living space (per county records)
  • 5882 SF lot (per county records)
  • Central air conditioning
  • Many dual pane windows
  • Hardwood & tile floors throughout
  • Raised panel interior doors
  • Attached 2 car garage with extra wide driveway
  • Washer, dryer, and refrigerator all stay
  • Built 1954

1512 Santa Monica Ave – Virtual Tour Link: http://www.tourfactory.com/1642868

Living Room & Open Floor Plan 1512 Santa Monica Ave SJ 95118

OPEN LIVING, ABUNDANT NATURAL LIGHTING!

The living room offers a wood burning fireplace, built in bookshelves, hardwood flooring, recessed lights, and access to the front porch – a welcoming, comfy place to relax in a friendly neighborhood.

The kitchen overlooks the back yard and features younger cabinets, stainless steel appliances, slab granite countertops, a sun tunnel, tile floor, and a door to the garage.

The spacious dining area is open to both the kitchen and living room, and it also provides a tile floor & view of the inviting back yard.

Outside there’s plenty of room for everything with both a spacious deck – like an outside “family room” – and a flagstone patio with an exquisite pergola, which makes for a fabulous outside dining area. A lawn, fruit trees, and planting area complete this space. (Fruit trees include apple, peach, and orange.)
BEDROOMS & BATHROOMS

The bedroom wing enjoys hardwood floors, fan lights in each bedroom, and cedar floors in the closets with custom “Elfa” organizers and shelving.

The large master suite includes 2 closets, hardwood floors, and a fan light. Located at the rear of the home, it enjoys a wide view of the beautiful back yard.

The updated master bathroom provides a stall shower along with a toilet and vanity. The hall bath is also nicely updated with a pedestal sink, toilet, and shower over tub.

SCHOOLS for 1512 Santa Monica Avenue

Schallenberger Elementary
Willow Glen Middle
Willow Glen High

See also:

http://popehandy.com/san-jose-cambrian-park/

http://www.valleyofheartsdelight.com/Property/1512-Santa-Monica-Ave-San-Jose-California

Cambrian Park Plaza SignThe months of inventory for any part of the real estate market can vary, depending on many factors, including age of home, house size, lot size, and school district, whether or not there’s a pool, and many other things. It can be very useful to understand this metric when selling a Silicon Valley home. I’ve done market numbers crunching tied to the specific characteristics of a property (say, small yard with pool or big yard with no pool) to find the impact of those characteristics on the probability that a home will sell – or how fast.

The Cambrian area of San Jose is a very “hot market” overall, but it can be confusing to know how hot it really is, just like the rest of Santa Clara County, because there are multiple school districts – and schools are probably the number one driver of home values in this highly educated valley.

An explanation of “months of inventory”

What does “months of inventory” mean? This figure references how long it would take to sell a property if homes continued to sell and close at the current pace with no new inventory coming on the market. A good analogy is to consider a bathtub which drains. If you add no new water to the tub, how long will it take to empty out?

The months of inventory is sometimes called the absorption rate. The question is simple: how long will it take for the current inventory of homes for sale to get absorbed by the home buyers purchasing them? It doesn’t have to be calculated by months. It could be in days, weeks, or years. But months is probably most common.

The Cambrian area of San Jose’s months of inventory as a whole, and in one price point

Cambrian was once an enormous zone of the Santa Clara Valley. Today we mostly think of it as within San Jose in the 95124 and 95118 zip codes. Some of it it adjacent to Campbell – a very tiny sliver is IN Campbell, and a tinier still area is in San Jose and is under the Campbell School Union District. Most of this area is in one of three elementary school districts: Cambrian, Union, or San Jose Unified.

Here’s the breakdown – first, for ALL of Cambrian (MLS area 14 for my Realtor readers) that’s within the City of San Jose and second, by elementary school district. The area for Campbell Elementary is so small that the numbers are not significant (no offense to the Campbell school residents). It can just jump around too much to be helpful, and often gives us no usable data. Please have a look:

I highlighted the Union Elementary School District in both charts. Aside from Campbell, which has numbers too small to register a MOI, these are the hottest tickets in the district. Last month’s highlight was the San Jose Unified School District. These areas were the hottest in May, though in June they swapped places with the Union Elementary School District, meaning these markets may be more similar than not.

Here are the numbers from a month ago for comparison:

The message I’d like to convey is this: you can read about information for your part of Silicon Valley, or your city or zip code, but it’s not until you drill things down to an area that closely matches your own home will you have a better sense of your own home’s “real estate marker.” It’s never “how is the market?” so much as “how’s the market for YOUR home – or the one you want to buy?”

If you were only tracking Cambrian, you might see 0.69 months of inventory. That’s a lightning fast seller’s market. But it’s not nearly as good if you’re selling in the area with Cambrian Elementary Schools in the entry-level market. There, you’re looking at closer to 0.6 months of inventory for homes around $1 million, while the same price point with Union Schools is a mere 0.46, and San Jose Unified is 1 whole month.

Years ago, I had a Willow Glen listing where the whole back yard was the pool. I did a study on the months of inventory and learned that pools in properties with that lot size took substantially more time to be absorbed. Likewise, I had a Los Gatos estate property on an acre of land, and the reverse was also true: the months of inventory showed that large lots on $2 million and up homes for sale did not sell nearly as well without a pool.

The math is simple: using the same criteria, divide the number of active listings by those of homes sold in the last 30 days. The criteria can be anything you like – a property’s size, location, number of bathrooms, price, age, etc. Often I include approximately the same home and lot size together with the school district. That usually provides much more accurate info on “how’s the market” as compared to just getting it by zip code alone.

If you are looking to buy or sell a home in Cambrian, or anywhere in San Jose or Santa Clara County, this kind of information is really important. It is not hard to do, but very few real estate agents will provide this information before you list or before you make the final determination on the list price of your home.

Looking for a good Silicon Valley Realtor who will get you that extra data? Please call or email me. I would love to chat to see about possibly working together.

Bel Estos Drive near Carlton and Rosswood in San Jose's Cambrian areaMy Cambrian area of San Jose Real Estate Report was recently published with the updated numbers from the closed sales last month for this part of San Jose (95124 and 95118 with a little of 95008 too). Please click on the link above to see much more information there.

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.

In this district of San Jose, we have been experiencing dreadfully low inventory of homes for sale, and buyers aren’t backing off as much as usual for this time of year – I believe because there is just a whole lot of pent up demand from nearly two years of a deep seller’s market. What does that mean? Sellers, if you have a problem home, or one not updated or well maintained, this is the time to sell it – buyers have little to choose from so are purchasing properties that need more work than they would bother with in a more balanced market.

Want to learn more about Cambrian Park real estate, the Cambrian district, Cambrian neighborhoods, school districts and zip codes? Please also see this article: Cambrian Park: Good Schools, Low Crime, Close to Los Gatos and Campbell

Be sure to read to the end to see the live Altos charts too – they are near the end of the article so please keep reading into the next page!

Generally speaking it is still a hot seller’s market and great time to sell a Cambrian home.

 Please see the whole Cambrian Real Estate Report for charts, stats and more.

The condo and townhouse real estate market for San Jose 95124 & 95118

Close to the Los Gatos border sits one of the more affordable Cambrian neighborhoods in San Jose and the west valley generally. It enjoys lovely views of the hills, great public schools with high API scores, a neighborhood private school to boot, and convenient access to freeways and stores. There’s no sign, marker or gateway to the area, so many of its residents are probably unaware that the official name to it is Cambrian Gardens.

This neighborhood provides an incredible “bang for the buck” for home buyers wanting excellent schools and not wanting to pay luxury home pricing. In many ways, it’s a “sleeper” – meaning that many people don’t know it’s there, but it’s a good deal!

Continue reading

The Oster neighborhood, centered around Oster Elementary School in San Jose’s Cambrian district, is situated on the north side of highway 85 and just west of Camden Avenue, part of the 95124 zip code. It’s one of the more affordable areas within the highly regarded Union School District, which is not to say that real estate prices are inexpensive there! They are just slightly softer than those around Carlton, Alta Vista, and Guadalupe, generally.

Oster Elemenary in Cambrian attendance map

The Oster neighborhood is a nicely maintained pocket within Silicon Valley’s “west valley” (which follows Highway 85).

Oster Elementary School area street

Most streets, and most properties, are well maintained in the Oster neighborhood.  Some of this area used to be unincorporated (and you can tell that by the lack of sidewalks and curbs, and sometimes also gutters). Where houses have 4 digits (say 4921 xyz street), it’s usually incorporated into the City of San Jose. And where the street address has 5 numbers, such as 14534, it is or was originally unincorporated.  The unincorporated area usually have larger lots, and some of them were originally on septic and may still have a septic tank buried in the back yard, even if now they are hooked up to the public sewer.

Oster Area Ranch Style Home

What are homes like in the Oster neighborhood?

Houses are, of course, many decades old. Some, in the older original Cambrian Park area on the west side of the school’s attendance area, may have been built as early as the 1940s, but most of the area was constructed in the 1950s and 1960s. Overall, the best land in Santa Clara County was built out years ago. It is therefore often true that the best land or location will come with an older structure.

Most houses are 1 or 2 stories, no basements, with attached 2 car garages. Most houses are the typical 3 – 4 bedroom, 2 – 3 bath ranch style tract home that is seen throughout most of Silicon Valley. Home size ordinarily runs between 1,000 SF and 2,000 SF, though they range from about 850 SF to well over 3,000 SF. Lot sizes are frequently between 6,000 SF and 8,000 SF, but the older section of Cambrian Park may boast 10,000 SF lots or greater.

Oster neighborhood house

How is the Oster part of Cambrian?

Continue reading

Silicon Valley home prices are sky high. The average price of homes selling in Santa Clara County is about 1.25 million. Cambrian offers good schools, a reasonable commute to places like Apple in Cupertino, and a nice location near Los Gatos and Campbell with lower real estate prices. For that reason, it’s become a magnet for smart home buyers over the last 20 years. If you have the budget for an average Santa Clara County home, how far would it go in Cambrian?  Here’s the data, pulled this week from MLSListings, to answer that question.

Homes in 95118 tend to be younger and bigger than those in 95124, but the 95124 area is generally preferred as the schools are usually better (Union or Cambrian Elementary Districts and Campbell Union High School District vs San Jose Unified schools, though some of these are quite good, too) and 95124 is closer to Campbell and Los Gatos.  However, if someone is commuting to downtown San Jose, 95118 would be more convenient. The most expensive homes tend to be in 95124 with CUHSD. One caveat to this data is the quantity of results – Cambrian in the SJUSD has far fewer sales than CUHSD, and sometimes can be so low the data is unreliable. The smallest inventory for one of these categories this week was 7 in the SJUSD 95124 area.

See what’s selling in Cambrian now on the map below:

  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. 4 beds, 3 baths
    Home size: 1,782 sq ft
    Lot size: 6,499 sqft
  4. 4 beds, 2 baths
    Home size: 1,608 sq ft
    Lot size: 10,890 sqft
  5. 4 beds, 2 baths
    Home size: 1,868 sq ft
    Lot size: 5,998 sqft
  6. 4 beds, 2 baths
    Home size: 1,830 sq ft
    Lot size: 12,501 sqft
  7. 3 beds, 2 baths
    Home size: 1,600 sq ft
    Lot size: 9,282 sqft
  8. 3 beds, 3 baths
    Home size: 1,573 sq ft
    Lot size: 3,380 sqft
  9. 5 beds, 3 baths
    Home size: 2,598 sq ft
    Lot size: 8,999 sqft
  10. 4 beds, 2 baths
    Home size: 1,364 sq ft
    Lot size: 7,021 sqft
  11. 0 beds, 0 bath
    Home size: 3,200 sq ft
    Lot size: 7,130 sqft
  12. 0 beds, 0 bath
    Home size: 3,364 sq ft
    Lot size: 7,440 sqft
  13. 0 beds, 0 bath
    Home size: 2,605 sq ft
    Lot size: 6,529 sqft
  14. 4 beds, 3 baths
    Home size: 1,995 sq ft
    Lot size: 5,998 sqft
  15. 4 beds, 3 baths
    Home size: 2,169 sq ft
    Lot size: 6,198 sqft
  16. 3 beds, 2 baths
    Home size: 1,200 sq ft
    Lot size: 7,200 sqft
  17. $1,058,000 : Bouret DR, SAN JOSE
    3 beds, 2 baths
    Home size: 1,440 sq ft
    Lot size: 6,499 sqft
  18. 3 beds, 2 baths
    Home size: 1,684 sq ft
    Lot size: 23,304 sqft
  19. 0 beds, 0 bath
    Home size: 3,328 sq ft
    Lot size: 6,882 sqft
  20. 0 beds, 0 bath
    Home size: 3,328 sq ft
    Lot size: 6,882 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.

Convenient to Good Samaritan Hospital, Carlton Elementary School and freeway access to highways 17 and 85, the beautiful “King Street” neighborhood in San Jose’s Cambrian Park district seems to be close to everything. But a drive through the tree-lined streets with tidy homes seems like a relaxing step into the welcoming neighborhoods of yesteryear rather than the hustle and bustle of today’s Silicon Valley.

Typical "King Street" House

As with the nearby Alta Vista neighborhood, homes here show a pride of ownership not found everywhere. Holidays include beautiful displays of lights that invite neighbors out to tour after dark. Many home owners wrap the trunk of the trees between the sidewalk and street with blankets of white lights, making for a stunning look down the road.

The “King Streets” enjoy an uncommon appeal that makes homes here perennially desirable to home buyers. The popularity of the area is due partly to the convenience factor (easy to get to a great elementary school with high API scores, easy to get to the freeways, Los Gatos and Good Sam) and the beauty or neighborhood charm factor. It is a winning combination for this west valley community! Many who wish to live in Los Gatos choose this part of San Jose because it’s on the border, so it is not uncommon for the King Streets to be a first home and the move up one is in Los Gatos.


View “The King Streets” in a larger map
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

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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


Selling homes in
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