News

Landlord's plans spur fears of displaced residents

38 households warned to seek new housing

The specter of being priced out of Mountain View is hanging over more than three dozen households near the Rex Manor neighborhood amid news that their new landlord intends to phase out tenants for a series of building upgrades later this year.

The residents at risk of displacement include hairdressers, teachers and public servants for whom the rising cost of living in Mountain View has been a longstanding concern. But other residents, including tech-industry workers pulling in six-figure salaries, say they are similarly afraid they won't be able afford local rental prices following the improvements.

The 38 homes in question are located in two separate townhouse complexes, Forest Glen and Granada Drive, where current rents run around $2,750 a month for a two-bedroom apartment, according to residents.

Both properties were acquired earlier this year by Prometheus Real Estate Group, a San Mateo-based property development and management company that has made extensive inroads into the lucrative Mountain View market.

After purchasing the sites, the company last month invited tenants to a wine-and-cheese social to discuss their plans at the downtown Madera Apartments, another Prometheus property. The choice of location was foreboding for some attendees -- a two-bedroom Madera rental can run about $5,000 a month.

At the meeting, company representatives reportedly informed the crowd they would gradually terminate leases to begin work on renovating the townhouses with the plan to eventually bring them up to market rent.

For many residents, this news was tantamount to an eviction notice, explained John Scarboro, a Granada tenant who also sits on the city's Environmental Planning Commission. Over recent weeks, many residents have come to believe they have little prospect of being able to afford their former apartments after they're renovated, he said.

One neighbor is convinced his family will be forced to go back to the Philippines; another neighbor who is currently unemployed is facing a crisis regarding what to do, Scarboro said.

The situation isn't too much better for Scarboro's own family, including his wife and two kids, aged 8 and 10. As an environmental engineer at the NASA Ames Research Center, he pulls in a good salary above $100,000 a year but so far he hasn't been able to find new housing in Mountain View that would meet his budget.

"Anywhere else this would be a tremendous amount of money, but here it's not too much," he said. "It's just not enough to stay in Mountain View."

Similar stories abound among the tenants. Brandon Jones, a Google software engineer, has lived at the Granada townhouses since 2011 with his wife and their 2 1/2-year-old toddler. Like other residents, Jones is facing the unsavory possibility that his family will have to move to distant Fremont or San Jose. He acknowledged that some other residents hold tech workers like him to blame for the larger trend of rental increases even though the problem, he says, is mutual.

"I'm the iconic tech worker making six figures, making everything more expensive in the area, but even I can't live in this area," Jones said. "It's a running joke among Google employees how bad housing is. Nobody can afford to live near the company."

Numerous residents say they expect their townhouses to fetch rents around $4,000 a month, which is slightly above the average price in Mountain View for a three-bedroom townhouse. Like other Peninsula landlords, Prometheus sets a baseline criteria for tenants to prove they earn more than three times the monthly rent. With that requirement, a household would have to earn more than $144,000 annually to be eligible to rent a $4,000-per-month unit, Scarboro pointed out.

Exact plans for the Granada and Forest Glen units are still being worked out. Jon Moss, Prometheus executive vice president, explained that his company was committed to good stewardship of its properties over a long term, rather than flipping sites for a quick buck. His company had no plans to start renovations for a year, and until that time current tenants could continue living in their units on a month-to-month basis, he said.

Moss detailed a slate of fix-ups needed by the 40-year-old townhouses, including roof repairs, termite fumigation, dry-rot removal and asbestos removal as well as new fixtures. He could not say what rental prices would run when the units are put back on the market.

"It's so far out that it's hard for us to guesstimate," Moss said. "I do sympathize and understand the affordability issues. The market is tight right now in terms of availability."

Prometheus has been active in the Mountain View real estate market for about 40 years, and today the company has grown into one of the major players in the local residential and commercial rental market. The company is currently involved in multiple projects to develop new housing in town, including a 184-unit apartment complex at 100 Moffett Blvd., and a 66-unit building at 1616 El Camino Real.

Prometheus could be responsible to pay some of its displaced tenants a housing relocation fee under Mountain View housing policies, depending on whether the household earns less than 80 percent of the area's median income. For a four-person family, that amount would be $75,500 per year. Any household that meets that criteria would be entitled to three months of rent for a similar-sized rental unit, as well as an additional $3,000 concession for displaced children, seniors, or disabled persons. If applicable, Prometheus would be required to cover those costs, said Linda Lauzze, Mountain View neighborhood services manager.

Residents at Forest Glen and Granada say they don't begrudge Prometheus seeking to make money, but they are frustrated that the company intends to push out longstanding renters with limited options elsewhere in town. Mountain View currently has no available below-market-rate housing, although more than 200 people have signed up for a city waiting list for any new openings.

Tenants would stomach a rent increase, but they don't want to lose their homes, said Emily White, a social worker residing at Forest Glen.

"(Prometheus) has so much business in Mountain View, and they're expelling hard-working people who contribute to the community" she said. "If they were good global citizens, they wouldn't kick us out."

Comments

22 people like this
Posted by Ridiculous
a resident of Sylvan Park
on Apr 24, 2015 at 2:19 pm

A few years ago, the house I rent, which I currently rent for $2600 a month, 3 bedrooms, would have been thought of as high priced. Now that's considered cheap and that's one paycheck plus part of my next second one each month. Seriously wish Google would keep to it's promise of doing no harm to the community, because it's hurting so many families who have been here for years and don't earn as much as the techies they pay do. I feel bad for the bus drives who Google doesn't pay while they are waiting for their passengers to leave work. Waiting for that bubble to burst again.


14 people like this
Posted by Martin Omander
a resident of Rex Manor
on Apr 24, 2015 at 2:20 pm

I'm glad the new City Council is more open to new housing. This is one of many stories showing us how much we need it. I want my kids to be able to afford to live here, if they so choose.


14 people like this
Posted by MV Neighbor
a resident of The Crossings
on Apr 24, 2015 at 2:41 pm

It's a joke. If even those working in high tech pulling in 6-figure salary can't afford to live here. Those of us who work in other industries don't even stand a chance...


41 people like this
Posted by Emily White
a resident of Rex Manor
on Apr 24, 2015 at 4:01 pm

Forest Glen and Granada town home tenants were told to by Prometheus ( one month ago) that renovations are expected to begin during the summer and that 4 - 3 broom town homes will be renovated at a time and this takes approx 1 month. We were told that tenants in these apts would receive 30-90 days notice depending on when their leases expire and that they want to complete as many as possible prior to school starting THIS Fall. Not a year from now.. The majority of tenants are month to month. We were told that renovations at Forest Glen are expected to start my his Fall.
The majority of residents have been MV residents between 10-30+ years. We are Teachers, Nurses, Hospice Workers, MDs ( Residents) and yes - one person is a Hairdresser with a business in Mountaiview for many years. Many are small business owners in town and have contributed financially and professionally to the growth and success of Mtn View. We are a tight knit diverse educated middle class neighborhood and many have kids in HS who are being forced to leave the friends they grew up with for Hollister or Oakland. Some have decided to resign from their teaching jobs. Some who work in PA or MP with kids in school here are finding that SSan Jose is a possibility - and the once 20 min commute will be over 2 hours a day due to the increased traffic. Some have old parents in their 90's and they live here to be near them. This once vibrant community of long term MV members between 35-70 will be replaced by young tech workers in their 30s relocating for Google most likely with little history this town and incomparable in terms of having deeply established lives and roots here. We were happy to remain w increased rents. Most of us are already paying $2800-$3500 as it is. What kind of City sanctifies Prop Mgmt companies to uproot and literally erode long standing neighborhoods , friends, families ? How can companies like Google and others - who also will rent out our homes for Corporate Housing close their eyes to the lives that are yes - being emotionally and financially damaged due to their turning the other cheek? I thought they pride themselves as "Socially Responsible"? Prometheus states that they pay for our displacement? Sure - absolutely but ONLY if you are 1 person earning less than $50k or a family of 4 earning less than $75k. Well guess what? We are NOT earning that because if we did - we couldn't live here in the first place . We are earning on average between $60-$125k - middle income . Poor for MV but not for most of the rest of the country . I used to love this City so much. It took me 30 years to get to that point and now - I feel betrayad by this town. This would never happen anywhere else that claims they have real community cohesiveness and caring. Speaking for many of those professional long timers being forced from a City that by its lack of actions really seems to care less.


16 people like this
Posted by LoveYourDNA
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Apr 24, 2015 at 4:10 pm

Thugs! An eviction just happened to me too, only it was much more sinister in nature. I've had termites in my kitchen cabinets for years but a neighbor who was a termite guy was spraying for them for me. 2 years ago he retired so I reported them to the manager that they had returned. I was first threatened with having to pay for the inspection and the inspectors time if none were found. The day the inspector came out and found them I was given a 60-day notice. I fought it off with help from an attorney. They came back again 12/14 and with great fear I told them the termites were back. Guess what? Yep, I've been evicted. The attorney said I had a really good case of retaliation given it was the second attempt to evict me, but cases like that are hard to win. I didn't have the means to pay for a trial. I got a bit more time to get out but for that I'm paying their attorney's fees. Disgusting! I'm leaving the Bay Area. Sick of the rat race and what's it's becoming. Don't rent at 91/93 Church st. if you value your health and sanity.


13 people like this
Posted by Kathy
a resident of Sylvan Park
on Apr 24, 2015 at 4:53 pm

It's not just about supply and demand, it is also about greed and the almighty dollar; Example: 'Carmel Village' on San Antonio in Mtn View was listing their studio for $2850 about 6 months ago, now $2950, so let's gouge the consumer at every opportunity. Web Link Even if they build more apartments, they are going to be small and expensive and not suitable for a family, couple or even a single person who wants to live in a neighborhood. I have no idea how young families make it around here, is the weather THAT good? Why doesn't Google open operations in Reno or some other affordable place? I know that if I was a young person starting out, would look into other tech areas of the country which are affordable and nice places to live. Web Link


16 people like this
Posted by long time resident
a resident of North Whisman
on Apr 24, 2015 at 5:50 pm

same thing happened to my family 2 month noticed, landlord said he could get twice the rent my family was paying. Greed, they posted an add on Craigslist rented it sight unseen to future google employees from out of state. I know this because my friends live in the same complex. They got the same notice, 2 months later. I blame the City Council for fondling over google. Just because they have a bus service and donate money pay taxes doesn't serve us long time community residents one bit!!!


28 people like this
Posted by Robert
a resident of another community
on Apr 24, 2015 at 6:24 pm

You really can't blame the city council for wanting to bring good jobs to the city, or anyone lucky enough to get one of those jobs for wanting a place to live. The problem comes from the area being 40 years behind on housing production, and when someone new moves here they're either going to add to the crowd or displace someone, there are literally no other possible outcomes.


2 people like this
Posted by Nobody
a resident of another community
on Apr 24, 2015 at 8:31 pm

2750 a month will easily cover the cost of 1075 Space Park Way 44 MOUNTAIN VIEW CA 94043. That will house 1 family. Whoever gets there first.


28 people like this
Posted by MV Resident
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Apr 24, 2015 at 9:23 pm

The people around here (residents, corporations, government) need to come to grips with the reality that there must be ample housing at a wide variety of price points to maintain a balanced demographic. Sure, we want high tech employees to be able to live near where they work, but we want the same for firemen, nurses, teachers, plumbers, auto mechanics, gardeners, carpenters, etc.

The hard part has been taken care of: there are jobs here. There are plenty of towns/cities where there is lots of cheap land, but no one wants to move there because the job opportunities are slim.

There are no easy solutions. Build a high-rise apartment and yes, there will be traffic issues, at least until public transit improves. There are growing pains at all times; the farmers from a hundred years ago would be astonished at today's Peninsula cities.

We can do this, just like other towns and cities across the world. Yes, we will lose something, but there will be other things gained. People must shed their provincial mindset in these parts. That is part of the past now.


16 people like this
Posted by Mtn view long time resident
a resident of North Whisman
on Apr 24, 2015 at 11:14 pm

It used to be about community here. And tight knit. My kids grew up here but are going tooke away because they can't afford it. Google has it free wifi for mountain view residents And we have a Google wifi box on the lamp out in front of our house. But we can't get wifi. Google isn't about helping our community at all and the city council has obviously been paid off to allow such greediness to continue. It used to take me five minutes to get to work at moffett. Now it's 20 minutes because of folks taking middlefield and I now take the freeway. More pollution and long time residents moving away. And yes rhe person above who wrote about why doesn't Google relocate to Reno or someplace similar. That is a terrific idea. There isn't anymore room here. This is a small town. Go someplace else that has the land available


8 people like this
Posted by Garrett
a resident of another community
on Apr 25, 2015 at 6:45 am

Google, Ebay and all the other companies have no control over what landlords do to their properties. Yes Google has expanded but that is not the fault of the MV city council.

The housing headache has been with us for 30 plus years and only some places to live.


4 people like this
Posted by juanita
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Apr 25, 2015 at 8:39 am

I hear the same thing daily, I too had the same thing happen had been a long time resident living in a family owned complex the owners passed away and the kids wanted to sell. Was bought out by large company out of San Francisco. We were also told they would remodel as people moved out, but the writing was on the wall what was going to happen. As soon as a neighbor moved out the remodel started, I lost my privacy having workman 8-5 at my door way, I was not working at the time it was so bad the pounding would go on for hours and items were failing off my walls. Later we found they had no permits to even work and the city shut them down. Thats when the whole complex was giving 90 days with a offer we could come back at market rates lol my 1 bedroom went from $975 to $1850. And yes its not personnel its business Very sad how greed comes into play. When in a time we should be helping each other.


25 people like this
Posted by Elsa
a resident of Rex Manor
on Apr 25, 2015 at 8:56 am

I live and work in Mountain View, and have for 20 years. I bought my place for 217K, and my mortgage is $900 a month. I am rather disgusted that "regular" people can't afford to rent an apartment here. I bought in Mountain View because I couldn't afford Palo Alto - an my mortgage is less than what my rent in PA was 20 years ago. I hate the concept that you have to be "above average" to live in Mt. VIew, or just about anywhere in the Bay Area. As a San Francisco native, growing up in an environment that was rich in differences - economic, racial, educational, was what made it great. Not so much anymore. The almighty dollar is really f-ing everything up. And people are worried about a neighbor's cat eating bird? Get real folks - there are a lot more pressing problems to solve...


14 people like this
Posted by Rent control + more housing
a resident of another community
on Apr 25, 2015 at 10:37 am

This is ridiculous. More housing supply is sorely needed in Mountain View but these renters need to be protected by the unregulated free market. I live in a rent controlled unit in San Jose, and despite our City's weak policy compared to other Bay Area cities, at least I can be assured that my rent won't increase by more than 8% per year. Pretty reasonable deal I would say. It's time for Mountain View and other Bay Area cities to step up to protect renters from these kinds of injustices, which sadly have become far too frequent.


6 people like this
Posted by the_punnisher
a resident of Whisman Station
on Apr 25, 2015 at 10:43 am

the_punnisher is a registered user.

The reality is that housing started its' money climb 40 years ago. As a tech in Silicon Valley I saw the writing on the wall and took a job that improved my housing problem and community support. You could live like a king with a $60K salary there.
But change happened and I had to make a western trip in my motorhome to decide where to live. I chose rural Colorado with a 40 minute drive to downtown Denver and the Denver Tech Center ( DTC ). There are plenty of jobs there. There are some jobs in the Interlocken Business Park. If you want to keep your lifestyle of busy, busy, busy, you can buy the Daly City type housing in both the Interlocken and DTC areas.
The one constant thing about life is change. You must deal with it. Remember, the prices for living out of the State of California are much less. You pay much more for everything there. $179K for a HOME in Highlands Ranch ( a Daly City type of construction ) is still possible. Prices are much lower if you make that 40 minute drive in any direction.
Just don't bring your SFBA driving habits here, because you really annoy the native Coloradans here


17 people like this
Posted by Mike
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Apr 25, 2015 at 9:19 pm

The political situation in Mountain View is similar to that of San Francisco: it's a mix of seniors who have gotten rich on their real estate and reminisce about the good old days; wealthy techies plunk down a cool couple of millions for some old shack that they then renovate and want to feel socially responsible by voting for "affordable housing", "rent control", and "green buildings" (all policies that just aggravate the problem); and young people who simply don't care. It's a toxic and destructive mix; then end product will either be another enclave for the ultra-wealthy, or the same bizarre mix of poor and rich you see in San Francisco. What won't result from it is a healthy middle-class community. The sensible thing is to abandon the sinking ship and not waste money on buying or renting in Mountain View.


5 people like this
Posted by exile
a resident of another community
on Apr 26, 2015 at 3:59 pm

Your overvalued real estate sits in a desert atop a toxic dump. That tricolor or thy lens problem is bigger than you think. It killed my cats and poisoned my girlfriend on Murlagan Avenue.

You pay a lot of money to get cancer in Mountain View.


5 people like this
Posted by exile
a resident of another community
on Apr 26, 2015 at 4:01 pm

Trichloroethylene.


22 people like this
Posted by Sunnyvale is great too
a resident of Rex Manor
on Apr 27, 2015 at 7:58 am

I know it's frustrating to be renting and be asked to leave what you feel is your home. It happened to us twice while we were renting, however I didn't get upset. Such is the life of a renter. Rental housing is meant to be flexible for both parties. A tenant on a month-to-month lease can leave with only 30 days notice. Much easier than if you own your home and want to sell and move. That's the benefit of renting, and also the downside. If you really want to have something all your own into the future, you have to buy. We ended up buying something much smaller than we would have liked, and not in the city and neighborhood we would have liked, but at least it's ours. These are the choices we must make to live and buy in a high demand area.

The rents in Sunnyvale are not too bad. I bet a 2 bedroom apartment rents for around $2,000/mo, maybe slightly cheaper in some cases. What's the problem with living in Sunnyvale? It's not a far commute from Mountain View and still a great community. I have friends and family living there and they are happy. Why the obsession with living in Mountain View? I bet many of us would love to live in Los Altos, but we have to accept the fact that it's just not possible. How is this any different?


23 people like this
Posted by Resident
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Apr 27, 2015 at 10:48 am

@Mike: You nailed it on the head, people who have gotten "in" start resisting any change. I'm one of those hated techies who supposedly drive up the cost of housing, and after sixteen years of living as cheaply as I could and saving every penny, I managed to buy an entry level home on the edge of the old Mountain View neighborhood. In the couple of years since I did that, prices have gone up so much that my house almost doubled in price if I were to sell. If I was looking for a place today, my family and I would be priced out of Mountain View (and Sunnyvale too).

We desperately need more housing. These people who already own here and whose costs are locked in due to mortgage and prop 13 need to calm down and let the city grow. I've talked to my neighbors about it, and they're all generally anti-development since they don't want "their city" to change. The arrogance! It's not your city, you live here, but you don't control it. One of my neighbors own several houses down here and rents them out (market price, of course), and still complains about the rich techies making it expensive.


52 people like this
Posted by @resident
a resident of Monta Loma
on Apr 27, 2015 at 12:15 pm

The answer is not more housing, Traffic is bad already.

There is a point where over saturation is not good anymore and we have reached that point.


25 people like this
Posted by Resident
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Apr 27, 2015 at 12:57 pm

Who's to decide what's too much? The bay area is growing, more people are coming here. You can try to keep them out with housing restrictions, which ends up gentrifying your area and pushing out any sort of variety, or you stop resisting growth and let it happen with all the problems and benefits that high density brings. As things get denser, mass transit becomes both more viable and more desirable to locals. NYC and Tokyo didn't spring out of the loins of Zeus in their current form, they grew from much smaller cities which had growth and geographic constraints.

Imagine if we had the population density to sustain a metro system like in Moscow or NYC (both of which are amazing systems). Traffic is only a reason to resist growth if you're also obstructionist to changes in the transit system.


15 people like this
Posted by @resident
a resident of Monta Loma
on Apr 27, 2015 at 2:21 pm

You don't think we have variety already? Mass transportation will never be viable as long as there are cars. People love there cars and the independence it brings them. Plus too many cities that would also have to come on board. I've lived in NYC, they had good subways system, but tell me you would rather live in a NYC environment or the type of city we have now? We are talking about quality of life for the people here. I don't think we want sky-rises that block our mt. views nor block our sun. For all of those people that like that type of life, then go to NYC or SF.


11 people like this
Posted by @resident
a resident of Monta Loma
on Apr 27, 2015 at 2:21 pm

You don't think we have variety already? Mass transportation will never be viable as long as there are cars. People love there cars and the independence it brings them. Plus too many cities that would also have to come on board. I've lived in NYC, they had good subways system, but tell me you would rather live in a NYC environment or the type of city we have now? We are talking about quality of life for the people here. I don't think we want sky-rises that block our mt. views nor block our sun. For all of those people that like that type of life, then go to NYC or SF.


14 people like this
Posted by anonymous_resident
a resident of Shoreline West
on Apr 27, 2015 at 7:36 pm

@resident -- here's the thing: as long as the companies hire, people will come. If we don't build housing, we just cram more people into less, and basic economics means the renters bid up the rents. Current residents resisting change in density/housing/transit/... isn't going to make any employer stop hiring, and it isn't going to bring "the old Mountain View" back; there are always people who will (perhaps naively) want to move here. The only *actual* result of this resistance is that normal people in the middle get squeezed out. Which ultimately just gives you a dysfunctional community.

Regardless of what we may want the city to be, it's time we acknowledge *reality*, and see that our resistance to higher density is the actual reason that so many people are hurting. Supply and demand applies whether we want it to be or not.


2 people like this
Posted by Terri
a resident of Martens-Carmelita
on Apr 27, 2015 at 8:05 pm

Recently tried to rent a 3 bedroom home here in Mountain View. Open house was set for 11am. there were 30 to 49 people waiting to view house. ridiculous!!


2 people like this
Posted by Gnar
a resident of Monta Loma
on Apr 27, 2015 at 8:52 pm

There recently was an article about a Google employee who realized that if he simply lived in a van in the Google parking lot in SF, all that would-be rent money would get him a down payment on a house instead.

When Google employees can't afford rent, you'd have to be thick as a brick to not recognize that there's a problem.

Pretty soon, Chinese and Russian investors will be coming in with suitcases full of cash... to rent.


7 people like this
Posted by Resident
a resident of another community
on Apr 27, 2015 at 10:25 pm

We have to accept "reality" because you say so? Last time I looked
you and all your friends have no legal right to tell me or anyone
else what to do.

Every person is the captain of their own ship and has a right to
their own point of view.


6 people like this
Posted by Careen
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Apr 27, 2015 at 10:39 pm

Reading all these points of view,it's easy to pluck out the folks that have an invested interest in our community not a bunch of transplants. I miss my old Mountain View.?


4 people like this
Posted by anonymous_resident
a resident of Shoreline West
on Apr 27, 2015 at 11:34 pm

@Resident: of course I don't have a legal right to tell you what to believe. But to me the facts are pretty obvious: too much demand, not enough supply. And furthermore, I don't think the demand will go away as long as the companies keep hiring. And finally that none of the companies seem interested in slowing their hiring. Is that controversial?

I very much respect the desire for "old Mountain View." I'd love more breathing room as much as the next person. But I'm just trying to be pragmatic. Right now quality of life is pretty bad for a lot of people. How do we make it better?


9 people like this
Posted by M
a resident of another community
on Apr 28, 2015 at 12:32 am

Careen: re: "not a bunch of transplants" talk like this makes me sad. I've lived in four states and I've never felt this brand of unwelcome anywhere else. I love this place too and want the best for it, ever since I was lucky enough to have the opportunity to move here. Sometimes it's really hard to see myself continuing to build a life here long-term, though...


23 people like this
Posted by Resident
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Apr 28, 2015 at 6:51 am

We're lucky to be living in a part of the world which is so successful that people come here from elsewhere to make their lives better! Having lived in plenty of places in the opposite situation, let me assure you, the problems we have are a lot better and we can adjust to them by allowing the city to grow! When a city is shrinking, you end up with a lot of crime, blight and an atmosphere of hopelessness. I hope those companies keep hiring, and that their employees can live locally and spend money locally to spread the wealth to others. Seriously, we're lucky to be living in a pocket of wealth in an otherwise stagnant country, and what makes growing pains so painful here are all the selfish people resisting any sort of change.


6 people like this
Posted by Hmm
a resident of Monta Loma
on Apr 28, 2015 at 12:07 pm

Most companies only hire their executives to live here. Most of the openings are over seas. So basically the companies are bringing their heavy weight people to this area, the rest are outsourced to other countries or states. That is why the new ones in town can afford the million dollar NEW house that the developers are building. The average Joe can't afford that.

No one mentions reality, which is that most people do not have to live close to their company, they can easily work remotely.

Yes, everyone and there uncles want to move here, but that is unrealistic, unless if you want to live in a sardine type environment.

@Careen, you are so right.


8 people like this
Posted by Affordability and Useful Data on Home Prices
a resident of another community
on Apr 28, 2015 at 2:40 pm


Looks like property prices are not that bad in many cities such as San Jose, Campbell, Santa Clara, Sunnyvale.... etc. as evidenced by
the data below. I am forwarding an email I received recently (including
the realtor info in case anyone is interested) ...
Looks like skyrocketing prices are confined to Mountain View... other
cities such as Palo Alto, Los Altos, LAH, etc. have always been pricey.

With Good shuttle buses, living in affordable cities and commuting to
MV is perhaps a meaningful option. Rents in these relatively affordable
cities are almost half as much as in MV. Why is everyone fixated on
living in MV?

Begin FORWARD
========================================
The Santa Clara County spring real estate market remains in hyper drive. Multiple offers abound at almost all price points in virtually every geographic marketplace, with sellers receiving an average of 104% of their asking price. The single family median sales price now stands at $950,000. The available-to-purchase inventory level is currently 25% below this same point last year, while the pending sales are less than one percentage point below the same period last year. Clearly, there appears to be an insatiable demand to buy any and all available housing in Santa Clara County. The planned unit development segment of our inventory is also noticeably below last year’s available supply. This could be a result of extremely high buyer demand in all entry-level housing. All of this translates into a red hot seller’s market that is very challenging for all buyers. The only relief in sight may be the historically slower summer/fall market, and even that is a gamble at this point in time.

Q1 2014 Q1 2015 % Change
Number of Sales 2,708 2,688 -1%
Average Price ($000) $700 $780 11%
Average DOM 33 30 -9%
Months of Inventory 1.2 1.1 -8%


Campbell
Q1 2014 Q1 2015 % Change
Number of Sales 83 75 -10%
Average Price ($000) $801 $942 18%
Average DOM 22 21 -5%
Months of Inventory .8 .6 -25%


Cupertino
Q1 2014 Q1 2015 % Change
Number of Sales 77 64 -17%
Average Price ($000) $1,350 $1,595 18%
Average DOM 22 19 -14%
Months of Inventory .7 .7 0%


Gilroy
Q1 2014 Q1 2015 % Change
Number of Sales 88 107 22%
Average Price ($000) $552 $575 4%
Average DOM 50 50 0%
Months of Inventory 2.3 2.0 -13%


Los Altos
Q1 2014 Q1 2015 % Change
Number of Sales 57 69 21%
Average Price ($000) $2,320 $2,610 13%
Average DOM 16 15/td> -6%
Months of Inventory .8 .9 13%


Los Altos Hills
Q1 2014 Q1 2015 % Change
Number of Sales 17 24 41%
Average Price ($000) $3,140 $3,500 11%
Average DOM 50 37 -26%
Months of Inventory 3.1 2.0 -35%


Los Gatos
Q1 2014 Q1 2015 % Change
Number of Sales 104 96 -8%
Average Price ($000) $1,505 $1,550 3%
Average DOM 49 28 -43%
Months of Inventory 1.7 1.8 6%


Los Gatos Mountains
Q1 2014 Q1 2015 % Change
Number of Sales 17 10 -41%
Average Price ($000) $785 $785 0%
Average DOM 86 102 19%
Months of Inventory 2.9 2.8 -3%


Monte Sereno
Q1 2014 Q1 2015 % Change
Number of Sales 5 11 120%
Average Price ($000) $4,436 $3,300 -26%
Average DOM 47 56 19%
Months of Inventory 4.2 2.9 -31%


Morgan Hill
Q1 2014 Q1 2015 % Change
Number of Sales 114 89 -22%
Average Price ($000) $630 $740 17%
Average DOM 44 55 25%
Months of Inventory 1.6 1.9 19%


Mountain View
Q1 2014 Q1 2015 % Change
Number of Sales 90 94 4%
Average Price ($000) $880 $1,233 40%
Average DOM 23 17 -26%
Months of Inventory .5 .6 20%


Palo Alto
Q1 2014 Q1 2015 % Change
Number of Sales 74 74 0%
Average Price ($000) $2,000 $2,500 25%
Average DOM 13 22 69%
Months of Inventory 1.1 1.2 9%


San Jose
Q1 2014 Q1 2015 % Change
Number of Sales 1,511 1,478 -2%
Average Price ($000) $620 $680 10%
Average DOM 35 32 -9%
Months of Inventory 1.1 1.0 -9%


Santa Clara
Q1 2014 Q1 2015 % Change
Number of Sales 165 153 -7%
Average Price ($000) $745 $825 11%
Average DOM 21 19 -10%
Months of Inventory .7 .6 -14%


Saratoga
Q1 2014 Q1 2015 % Change
Number of Sales 58 63 9%
Average Price ($000) $1,895 $2,300 21%
Average DOM 45 31 -31%
Months of Inventory 2.6 2.0 -23%


Sunnyvale
Q1 2014 Q1 2015 % Change
Number of Sales 149 160 7%
Average Price ($000) $830 $986 19%
Average DOM 15 16 7%
Months of Inventory .6 .6 0%


Number of Sales and Average Price are for only the stated quarter/year.
Average DOM and Months of Inventory are based on statistics for the last month of the stated quarter.
Source: TrendGraphix Jan-Mar 2015


Dottie Monroe
Real Estate Broker
Alain Pinel Realtors
167 S. San Antonio Road
Los Altos, CA 94022
650-208-2500
Web Link
© Alain Pinel Corporate, 12772 Saratoga-Sunnyvale Road, Saratoga, CA 95070
This is intended for general information only and is not legal or accounting advice. For your specific situation, you must consult your legal and tax advisors.
========================================
End FORWARD


9 people like this
Posted by Engineer
a resident of North Bayshore
on Apr 28, 2015 at 3:23 pm

@Hmm: "Most companies only hire their executives to live here. Most of the openings are over seas."

What? The big tech companies are hiring oodles of "normal" engineers with typical professional-job salaries. High rents are painful for us too, I personally could never imagine buying a house here without an insane amount of luck.


9 people like this
Posted by True
a resident of Blossom Valley
on Apr 28, 2015 at 3:31 pm

True is a registered user.

@Hmmm

You have no idea what you are talking about.


6 people like this
Posted by Emily
a resident of Rex Manor
on Apr 28, 2015 at 3:42 pm

In reference to the previous email from a kind realtor - thank you for pulling this info together!
Now I am quite sure that I am out of touch with reality ( or just a real dumb bunny) . It's just that many of us cannot ( or would not) live in Gilroy or Morgan Hill - even if $700k is considered affordable and a deal. I guess I am speaking for a few of my colleagues and neighbors - the teachers, social workers , one income households ...just average people- no one special. I was never a sarcastic type and thus I am stating this with the greatest sincerity . I also realize a great many people are wondering why we stay in this area instead of moving to Arkansas or Oregon or a gazillion other less costly places. I'm here because my family is here, my friends, my work and the tech startup environment. I would rather be back in Mass where I grew up because in my hometown 100 plus residents like us paying $3500 for a 3 bedroom 1 bath place would not be forced to evacuate their homes in 3 months or one year or ever just so the new owners can collect much higher rents. Where I came from -- it would probably be considered unethical and just not allowed. Yes - I know - just leave.
.


2 people like this
Posted by Hmm
a resident of Monta Loma
on Apr 28, 2015 at 4:12 pm

@true, obviously you do not work for a high tech company.

Remote workers are becoming the future, not everyone has to come into the office to do their work. By having outsources in India, work can continue 24/7.


12 people like this
Posted by True
a resident of Blossom Valley
on Apr 28, 2015 at 4:26 pm

True is a registered user.

@Hmm

I've worked for a high tech companies both large and small for 15yrs.

Your statement;

"Most companies only hire their executives to live here. Most of the openings are over seas. So basically the companies are bringing their heavy weight people to this area, the rest are outsourced to other countries or states."

Is false.

Of course there is outsourcing of some functions, that is the norm in a modern global industry/economy. But the statement you made doesn't stand up to be barest of scrutiny and has little to no reflection of reality.


2 people like this
Posted by hmm
a resident of Monta Loma
on Apr 28, 2015 at 4:52 pm

@true, maybe your company doesn't tell you or you just don't see the writing on the wall.

You think the average engineer can afford the new houses being built on Eveline? Or can afford the rent there for a new apartment? So tell me who do you think will be able to afford those new houses? And all the new houses that will be built in the future.

At my company, most the IT and non essential employees were moved to Texas, or their jobs were taken over by outsourcing it to India, China. Companies realize that this area is not practical for the low end workers.

If you have been in the industry that long you would know, i've been in it for twice as long, plus some.

This is why if you are an Engineer here, you need to demand 2x the pay you would make elsewhere in the country.


12 people like this
Posted by True
a resident of Blossom Valley
on Apr 28, 2015 at 5:17 pm

True is a registered user.

@Hmmm

Anyone with 30min to spare can look at the careers pages of any number of local tech firms and determine that there is no shortage of...in fact there is a wealth of open req's for individual contributors, engineers and the like in this area. Those busses rolling into the campuses of Oracle, Google, Linkedin, Yahoo, Facebook and dozens of others aren't filled with executives (those are the folks in the Porsches & Aston Martins) they are filled with engineers, support staff, marketing & sales professionals and the like.

It sounds as if you have some sort of axe to grind that has colored your view of reality. Your assertions simply aren't true.


Like this comment
Posted by Garrett
a resident of another community
on Apr 29, 2015 at 12:00 pm

We had this housing headache for over 40 years, 30 people waiting in line for 1 unit, people coming here with suitcases for a cash or lawyers with instructions to buy.

Not everyone here works tech so many jobs are in the 5 figure salary range but chances are you need 6 figures to live here. Not all jobs that require employees pay 6 figures but slowly this people who do are being shown the door.

People who move here from elsewhere are going to have to pay more like us because the prices for service have gone up. Don't moan and groan because you have to pay more for services compared to where you are from.


2 people like this
Posted by Jeremy Hoffman
a resident of Rengstorff Park
on Apr 29, 2015 at 12:25 pm

The jobs-housing imbalance is going to keep tearing Mountain View and the entire Bay Area apart unless we come together and change course. If you want to join us, check out the Campaign for a Balanced Mountain View.


2 people like this
Posted by Anon
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Apr 29, 2015 at 3:45 pm

Garrett wrote:
> Don't moan and groan because you have to pay more for services compared to where you are from.

Absolutely, I think most people who move here understand it's going to cost more. California is just naturally a nice place to live so that makes sense. I think most of the complaints I hear are more about frustration with the policies that make it worse, like growth and zoning restrictions. If the market was allowed to freely adjust, rents would still be high but not as astronomical as they are today.


2 people like this
Posted by The Root Cause
a resident of another community
on Apr 29, 2015 at 5:27 pm



Rents are not high in San Jose, Sunnyvale, Santa Clara....Plenty of
apartments to rent...

The real problem is MV not putting some control on employee
density growth and then making disingenuous comment about
jobs / housing imbalance.

And this obsession that every employee wants-to / should-be-able-to
live in MV is the root cause of congestion. San Jose, Santa Clara and
Sunnyvale are perfectly fine cities to live in -- they are not
congested at all. Plenty of room for growth.


Like this comment
Posted by Garrett
a resident of another community
on Apr 30, 2015 at 10:58 am

All cities surrounding Mtn View are having the same problem. Job g. rowth and not enough housing so kicking the can down the road will get you so far. Yes the rent is lower in San Jose but still for a majority of people that reside in the valley. San Jose is cheaper then Sunnyvale but Palo Alto is really high but Dublin is cheaper or you can be a urban pioneer and live Oakland or live in fab San Francisco.


Like this comment
Posted by Garrett
a resident of another community
on Apr 30, 2015 at 11:10 am

People will budget where they want to live or need to live and can't live. Some people will factor in what it will take to live in their desired community. Don't own a car will save you money, don't have children, live small are just what some people do to live here.


Like this comment
Posted by Affordability and Useful Data on Home Prices
a resident of another community
on Apr 30, 2015 at 1:27 pm


Know your data....
With data, it is possible to have respectful discussions.
MV is building itself into unlivable congestion.
There are neighboring cities with relatively low rents and home prices.
Reposting....

Looks like property prices are not that bad in many cities such as San Jose, Campbell, Santa Clara, Sunnyvale.... etc. as evidenced by
the data below. I am forwarding an email I received recently (including
the realtor info in case anyone is interested) ...
Looks like skyrocketing prices are confined to Mountain View... other
cities such as Palo Alto, Los Altos, LAH, etc. have always been pricey.

With Good shuttle buses, living in affordable cities and commuting to
MV is perhaps a meaningful option. Rents in these relatively affordable
cities are almost half as much as in MV. Why is everyone fixated on
living in MV?

Begin FORWARD
========================================
The Santa Clara County spring real estate market remains in hyper drive. Multiple offers abound at almost all price points in virtually every geographic marketplace, with sellers receiving an average of 104% of their asking price. The single family median sales price now stands at $950,000. The available-to-purchase inventory level is currently 25% below this same point last year, while the pending sales are less than one percentage point below the same period last year. Clearly, there appears to be an insatiable demand to buy any and all available housing in Santa Clara County. The planned unit development segment of our inventory is also noticeably below last year's available supply. This could be a result of extremely high buyer demand in all entry-level housing. All of this translates into a red hot seller's market that is very challenging for all buyers. The only relief in sight may be the historically slower summer/fall market, and even that is a gamble at this point in time.

Q1 2014 Q1 2015 % Change
Number of Sales 2,708 2,688 -1%
Average Price ($000) $700 $780 11%
Average DOM 33 30 -9%
Months of Inventory 1.2 1.1 -8%


Campbell
Q1 2014 Q1 2015 % Change
Number of Sales 83 75 -10%
Average Price ($000) $801 $942 18%
Average DOM 22 21 -5%
Months of Inventory .8 .6 -25%


Cupertino
Q1 2014 Q1 2015 % Change
Number of Sales 77 64 -17%
Average Price ($000) $1,350 $1,595 18%
Average DOM 22 19 -14%
Months of Inventory .7 .7 0%


Gilroy
Q1 2014 Q1 2015 % Change
Number of Sales 88 107 22%
Average Price ($000) $552 $575 4%
Average DOM 50 50 0%
Months of Inventory 2.3 2.0 -13%


Los Altos
Q1 2014 Q1 2015 % Change
Number of Sales 57 69 21%
Average Price ($000) $2,320 $2,610 13%
Average DOM 16 15/td> -6%
Months of Inventory .8 .9 13%


Los Altos Hills
Q1 2014 Q1 2015 % Change
Number of Sales 17 24 41%
Average Price ($000) $3,140 $3,500 11%
Average DOM 50 37 -26%
Months of Inventory 3.1 2.0 -35%


Los Gatos
Q1 2014 Q1 2015 % Change
Number of Sales 104 96 -8%
Average Price ($000) $1,505 $1,550 3%
Average DOM 49 28 -43%
Months of Inventory 1.7 1.8 6%


Los Gatos Mountains
Q1 2014 Q1 2015 % Change
Number of Sales 17 10 -41%
Average Price ($000) $785 $785 0%
Average DOM 86 102 19%
Months of Inventory 2.9 2.8 -3%


Monte Sereno
Q1 2014 Q1 2015 % Change
Number of Sales 5 11 120%
Average Price ($000) $4,436 $3,300 -26%
Average DOM 47 56 19%
Months of Inventory 4.2 2.9 -31%


Morgan Hill
Q1 2014 Q1 2015 % Change
Number of Sales 114 89 -22%
Average Price ($000) $630 $740 17%
Average DOM 44 55 25%
Months of Inventory 1.6 1.9 19%


Mountain View
Q1 2014 Q1 2015 % Change
Number of Sales 90 94 4%
Average Price ($000) $880 $1,233 40%
Average DOM 23 17 -26%
Months of Inventory .5 .6 20%


Palo Alto
Q1 2014 Q1 2015 % Change
Number of Sales 74 74 0%
Average Price ($000) $2,000 $2,500 25%
Average DOM 13 22 69%
Months of Inventory 1.1 1.2 9%


San Jose
Q1 2014 Q1 2015 % Change
Number of Sales 1,511 1,478 -2%
Average Price ($000) $620 $680 10%
Average DOM 35 32 -9%
Months of Inventory 1.1 1.0 -9%


Santa Clara
Q1 2014 Q1 2015 % Change
Number of Sales 165 153 -7%
Average Price ($000) $745 $825 11%
Average DOM 21 19 -10%
Months of Inventory .7 .6 -14%


Saratoga
Q1 2014 Q1 2015 % Change
Number of Sales 58 63 9%
Average Price ($000) $1,895 $2,300 21%
Average DOM 45 31 -31%
Months of Inventory 2.6 2.0 -23%


Sunnyvale
Q1 2014 Q1 2015 % Change
Number of Sales 149 160 7%
Average Price ($000) $830 $986 19%
Average DOM 15 16 7%
Months of Inventory .6 .6 0%


Number of Sales and Average Price are for only the stated quarter/year.
Average DOM and Months of Inventory are based on statistics for the last month of the stated quarter.
Source: TrendGraphix Jan-Mar 2015


Dottie Monroe
Real Estate Broker
Alain Pinel Realtors
167 S. San Antonio Road
Los Altos, CA 94022
650-208-2500
Web Link
© Alain Pinel Corporate, 12772 Saratoga-Sunnyvale Road, Saratoga, CA 95070
This is intended for general information only and is not legal or accounting advice. For your specific situation, you must consult your legal and tax advisors.
========================================
End FORWARD


Like this comment
Posted by Owners Sitting Pretty
a resident of Cuesta Park
on May 2, 2015 at 9:41 am

Owners of housing in the Bay Area (whether lived in or rented out) are sitting pretty thanks to the housing demand fueled by (1) new workers and (2) investors (aka speculators) from around the world. Owners can take equity out or sell and move to a region less in demand. Renters in the Bay Area are at risk of skyrocketing rents and eviction. But landlords have invested in political campaigns and politicians enough to forestall any rent control. Noticethat it is rarely even discussed.


2 people like this
Posted by outlaw landlords
a resident of another community
on May 2, 2015 at 2:15 pm

So what do you all think would happen if landlords were not allowed to rent homes and all homes had to be occupied. Landlords would be forced to sell the property. Would Mountain View be affordable to all who want to come and live here then? Would be there be an end to all of the sob stories from people who have no idea how to take charge of their own lives?


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