New Construction Homes
Post-tension slab foundations are found in newer homes. Here in the Bay Area, a structure’s foundation needs to withstand not only the load of the building, but expansive soils, and the ubiquitous earthquake. Certain foundations are better at handling these conditions, and are seen more frequently here. One of these which is gaining popularity in new construction is the post-tension slab foundation.
What is a Post Tension Foundation?
Post-tensioning is a technique that was developed and first put to regular use in the 1970s, and approved methods have been published by the Post-Tensioning Institute (PTI), a nonprofit organization, since 1976. Sometimes called post tensioning, or simply PT, this is a type of slab foundation with added reinforcement.
In essence, a slab foundation, aka a slab on grade foundation, is a concrete base only a few inches deep, sitting directly on earth. You might see this for a small shed or playhouse, but larger structures are almost always reinforced, usually with rebar, and a fabric water barrier is lain out before the concrete is poured.
A post-tension slab is reinforced with grids of steel cables cased in plastic sheathes instead of rebar. After the concrete has hardened around them, the cables are pulled taut with hydraulic stressing jacks. This pre-stressing of the concrete creates added compressive strength to the foundation.
Willow Glen is one of the most charming areas of San Jose, consisting of many older homes which feature lovely, classic architecture. Most Silicon Valley home buyers treasure the Willow Glen charm and ambiance, but many are seeking newer homes. A fabulous option is “The Willows“.
KB Homes built “The Willows” in 1999 to 2000. It is tucked away at the southernmost tip of Willow Glen, off of Foxworthy Avenue & close to Almaden Expressway, but only about 2.5 to 3 miles from all the action on Lincoln Avenue.
The tree-lined streets are built in something of a loop shape with Rubino Circle being the main access or loop road. Situated on the inner part of the loop are homes with smaller lots that are a little more affordable. The outer part of the circle is built with slightly larger homes on larger lots (but none of the lots are “big”). Sidewalks with soft curbs at the corners accompany the streets and make for a pedestrian-friendly, bike, wheelchair or stroller friendly area. Visit in the early evenings and you will see children and adults walking, strolling, taking dogs for a walk etc. – always a good sign! Because the neighborhood is a bit like an oversized cul-de-sac (no through traffic), it is very quiet in terms of traffic. The area has large street lights, too, making for a safe feeling community.
The Almaden Winery neighborhood, just off Blossom Hill Road in San Jose, has a rich and interesting past, dating back to the mid 1850s when the site was first planted with grape vines. It was the first winery in Almaden Valley and one of the oldest in the state of California. (It survived the prohibition period by getting licensed to make sacramental wine and by bottling grape juice.)
In this post I’ll share some photos of the neighborhood with you, explain about the three different builders/developers and show you where to find each one.
Looking for a younger Cambrian home with not too much yard work to do? The Soterion neighborhood may be just the ticket! This is one of my favorite little pockets in San Jose, 95124. The homes are light and bright inside, it’s close to shopping, commute routes, and great schools, and since the parcels are on the smaller side, many consider them lower in maintenance.
Where is Soterion located?
The Soterion community sits close to the intersection of Camden Avenue and Highway 85, with a Park and Ride just around the corner, making this an easy commute location for many. The streets are Soterion Drive, Agape Court, Chara Court, and Phileo Court. (They are all private roads.) There is a large Safeway as well as some restaurants and other shops about a half mile away or so at Branham and Ross. If you take a tech bus to work, the nearby Park & Ride may be super convenient for you.
What are the homes like in Soterion?
These 20 houses were built in 1996 and feature a nicely open living space downstairs and good sized bedrooms upstairs. Because they are on the young side, these houses were designed with a lot of windows and upstairs there are vaulted ceilings (and they are also after the cutoff of 1978 for lead based paint and asbestos). There’s no front yard to speak of, but the back is larger than you’d find in most townhouses, but smaller than on a more standard San Jose 6,000 SF lot. Continue reading
Many newcomers to the San Jose & Silicon Valley areas want to buy new homes (or newer ones). Santa Clara County, though, had a big “building boom” after World War II ranging from the 1940s through the 70s. At the end of the building frenzy, most of the land was taken. More importantly, most of the really good land was built up.
How old is the “average” San Jose home for sale? Probably about 45 – 50 years old, on average. Depending on where you’re looking, precisely, the homes could be younger or older on average.
There are some nice communities of new and younger homes in Silicon Valley, but there aren’t a lot of them. Most of the new home communities have houses on small lots. Some are near high voltage power lines (homes on Taft in San Jose’s Cambrian Park area) or next to freeways (Summerhill development off Samaritan Drive in San Jose).
The Los Altos Country Club Neighborhood
Younger, Elegant Mediterranean View Home
The floorplan is flexible. There is a 2 car garage at street level, but a third which is accessed from the rear of the property – ideal for RVs, boats, and extra cars or vehicles. The 3rd garage can be used as built, or as a rec room, extra storage, or a number of other options.
Please see the MLS information on this elegant home below! Open house Sat June 25 and Sun June 26, 2011. Continue reading
If you are looking for a new or newer home in Cambrian Park or Almaden Valley, look no furter! This exquisite house features an amazing kitchen at the heart of the home. It has been updated with slab granite, stainless steel dishwasher & fridge, gas range, a sunny garden window & recessed lights. It’s open to the breakfast nook and family room on one side and adjacent to the dining & living areas on the other.
You’ll love the open floorplan and the fact that there’s 1 bed and one bath downstairs. More wonderful plusses: inside laundry, AC, dual pane windows. Big master suite offers a walk in closet, soaking tub, separeate shower, big vanity and dual sinks.
Fabulous younger home in the Almaden Winery neighborhood!
- Four bedrooms, three bathrooms (one bed/bath downstairs)
- Living room features high ceilings, hardwood floors and elegant fireplace & is open to formal dining area
- Updated kitchen featuring slab granite & stainless steel
- Kitchen includes breakfast nook & is open to family room
- Family room enjoys fireplace & back yard access