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Old 03-18-2013, 12:44 AM   #41
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I don't have a very good feel for the rental market here. Zillow's rent estimate is $2450 but this seems high to me (of course I haven't looked for a rental for a long time).

A quick look on craigslist has a 2br town home (1000sq ft) close by renting for $2650 so perhaps Zillow's estimate is reasonable.
Wow, prices must have really gone up. I retired in 2007 (before any sign of a housing crisis) and left the San Jose area. At the time, I was living in a 1 bedroom apartment, maybe 700 square feet, in a great location and good building with good management. Carport for parking. I was walking distance from everything downtown, near Julian and Second Street, a couple of blocks north of St. James Park. I was paying $1000 per month.
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Old 03-18-2013, 08:06 AM   #42
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As we are all aware location is the major factor (all things being equal) in home values. This is not just the city but the neighborhood and even the street. I had some good guidance from my father and listened to him when I bought my house years ago. Location was important enough that I slept on a mattress on the floor and had no furniture for a couple of years so I could buy the house. Furniture came later as I saved the money for it. The older concrete block house is modest, solid, and comfortable yet the lot is worth more than the house. I don't have much faith in Zillow since I know it can sell for a couple of hundred thousand more than what they have determined. I have seen the same time and again on home sales in my area.

Cheers!
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Old 03-18-2013, 10:04 AM   #43
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Originally Posted by photoguy View Post
I don't have a very good feel for the rental market here. Zillow's rent estimate is $2450 but this seems high to me (of course I haven't looked for a rental for a long time).

A quick look on craigslist has a 2br town home (1000sq ft) close by renting for $2650 so perhaps Zillow's estimate is reasonable.
Thanks. Thanks. The seems typical of markets where people expect rising prices. Rents are cheap relative to purchasing.

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Old 03-18-2013, 10:15 AM   #44
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Wow, prices must have really gone up. I retired in 2007 (before any sign of a housing crisis) and left the San Jose area. At the time, I was living in a 1 bedroom apartment, maybe 700 square feet, in a great location and good building with good management. Carport for parking. I was walking distance from everything downtown, near Julian and Second Street, a couple of blocks north of St. James Park. I was paying $1000 per month.
This is interesting to me. I always thought that San Jose was a high rent city, 75-100% above Seattle. But in 2007 I moved into an attractive one bedroom apartment in a well managed building in a good Seattle neighborhood with only 500 sq ft, and also paid $1000. This wasn't the cheapest, but it was competitive in the area. Apartments were very hard to find.If rents are OK in this equaiton, here is an interesting article regardig international college students and their problems affording rent.

Squeezed by Soaring Rent, Students Double Up in Apartments…And in Bed | New City Collegian



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Old 03-18-2013, 11:21 AM   #45
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My daughter lives in the Silicon Valley, as does my niece and the daughter of a friend. If you look at ROI it is cheaper to rent, particularly if you don't intend to stay there more than 20 years. Right now several firms are adding to staff like there is no tomorrow.. high wage jobs (Google, Apple, Face Book and the like) and these employees want to buy a house because that represents 'you have made it'. Everyone wants a house with a yard and their zoning largely dictates that. The only solution is to migrate to higher density.
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Old 03-18-2013, 11:31 AM   #46
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The differences across the country makes you realize that this is a continent-sized nation.

Most countries are at most 2 hours flight from another country and within one time zone. In the US, it takes 6 hours to get from coast to coast.

There's no way there could be evenly distributed real estate prices across such a large land mass.
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Old 03-18-2013, 11:43 AM   #47
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I can't bring myself to buy a piece of real estate in the Bay Area (on the Peninsula and Marin County in particular). I understand that this area commands a certain premium relative to other parts of the country (great weather, dynamic economy, etc...). But the premium I am being asked to pay is far too high IMO. With all the money sloshing around, valuation has become un-important and I am seeing a lot of stupid prices. I'd rather not participate in the frenzy.
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Old 03-18-2013, 11:56 AM   #48
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My daughter lives in the Silicon Valley, as does my niece and the daughter of a friend. If you look at ROI it is cheaper to rent, particularly if you don't intend to stay there more than 20 years. Right now several firms are adding to staff like there is no tomorrow.. high wage jobs (Google, Apple, Face Book and the like) and these employees want to buy a house because that represents 'you have made it'. Everyone wants a house with a yard and their zoning largely dictates that. The only solution is to migrate to higher density.
You also have a lot of Asian buyers bidding up prices. They cherry-pick the areas with the best schools.

Been like that for awhile, before Hong Kong went to the PRC and a lot of wealthy Hong Kong citizens invested in the US and Canada.
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