Sonoma Housing Bubble

Pulling the cork out of Sonoma's bubbly housing foolishness

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Flipper in the House!

Remember this Guy from our POS Alert back in April?

337 ARROYO RD, Sonoma, CA 95476
On Market: 1 day
Price Reduced: 04/20/06 -- $455,000 to $449,900
Old Description
An unbelievable opportunity...Two houses for less than the price of one. Motivated seller has made these two charming cottages on one oak studded lot better than ever. Both cottages have been extensively remodeled. Private yards and a really cute setting. Ideal for an investor, owner/occupant, or extended families. Private laundry for each home. A great value for all. Separate gas and electric meters.

Well... He's still here!!!

Days on Market: 112

Price Reduced: 04/20/06 -- $455,000 to $449,900
Price Reduced: 05/05/06 -- $449,900 to $439,900
Price Reduced: 05/11/06 -- $439,900 to $420,900
Price Reduced: 05/23/06 -- $420,900 to $410,000
Price Reduced: 05/26/06 -- $410,000 to $399,999

His new description....

Is this cheap or what??? An unbelievable opportunity...Two houses for less than the price of one. Motivated seller has made these two charming cottages on one oak studded lot better than ever. Both cottages have been extensively remodeled. Private yards and a really cute setting. Ideal for an investor, owner/occupant, or extended families. Private laundry for each home. A great value for all. Separate gas and electric meters.

4/20/06 Zillow said: $462,081
Value Range: $402,010 - $508,289

Today: 8/09/06 Zillow Sez: $436,662
Value Range: $397,362- $497,795

1 yr ago value: $367,00

Sale History
01/07/2005: $350,000
10/02/1997: $28,500










Walks like a duck, quacks like a duck... Must be a flipper.

A flipper trying to make superficial price drops before he has to fully bend over and drop his pants.

Did y'all catch that 1997 sale price... $28,500?

This property is located in the *desirable* los banos area of Sonoma in Boyes Hot Springs.


Tax Assessment History 2004
Property tax: $2,598
Assessed value bldgs: $71,021
Assessed value land: + $68,730
Total assessed value: = $139,751

14 Comments:

At 8/09/2006 01:41:00 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Athena, first time poster, but have enjoyed reading this blog for some months now. I thought I might offer my personal perspective in the form of a comment.

The property in this post is down the street from where I live on a really cramped little lot, on a really cramped little street. It is beyond belief to see the price the seller has listed. Even with the "reductions".

When I moved to Boyes Hot Springs(BHS) from the East Bay three years ago to work for the Sonoma Mission Inn, I was shocked to see housing in the area selling in the 300's (I thought it was high then) and then to see it go up and up is so discouraging.

It is sad really because BHS was one of the few areas in Sonoma (and So. Co.) that was affordable to young families and people with jobs actually reflecting the pay and pace of the local economy. Yes, other than RE (and that is sure to change) very few people who work in Sonoma make any where near the kind of money one would need to purchase even a $300,000 house. Unless they use some very creative financing, but we all know where that is heading...

Boyes gets a somewhat unfair rap. It is much more than what you see driving down Hwy 12. Yes, there are some undesirable elements, but the community is actually very diverse, economically, socially, and ethnically. And it WAS the historically FAIR cost of housing that allowed working families/people to move up, which is really the American Dream is it not.

I shake my head in dismay at extremes and greed housed within the Bay Area community/economy. I have lived here since I was a young child, and the cost of housing (and living) has become some sort of twilight zone.

In fact, to mirror other blogs, the only people I know my age (late 20'/early 30's) who have bought housing in the Bay Area recently have done so with substantial down payments from their parents (we are talking over 100K). It all seems so out of balance.

What I am saying is nothing new, but I wonder what this place is going to be like in the next 20 years. The writing is on the wall, a very aged population (the PD forecasted something like 1 in 2 over the age of 65 in the next 10-20 years *I can't wait to drive on Hwy 12/101 with every other driver a senior citizen!*), without their children to help support them (who had to move out of state in order to survive), and an economy that has never kept pace with the cost of housing and is relegated to jobs in social and service sector (traditionally low paying). I won't even mention the issues with education, etc. It aint going to be pretty.

It is going to be an interesting ride. Maybe the "Big One" will come and wipe out all the substandard houses people are buying for a million dollars. Maybe this will "shake" people out of their bubble.

Any thoughts?

 
At 8/09/2006 01:57:00 PM , Blogger Athena said...

It astounds me too that places in BHS were even selling for the $300k range.

A friend of mine that grew up with me on the East side bought in BHS a couple years ago. I remember the first conversation as we looked around us in the neighborhood, and can still feel the same amount of irritation that so much had changed that people like us who made good $$$ had to buy in BHS because it was what we could afford. It was then that I knew something fundamental had become disconnected.

I don't think we even KNEW the area where he bought existed while growing up because back then BHS and Agua Caliente were known to be the places where the sex offenders were dropped off after being released from prison/jail. That was the dumping ground and NO parent that was awake wanted us in the area.

They may not dump them off there anymore, but the stigma hasn't really worn off. There is also a bit of an anonymous population that comes in and out of BHS and has been part of the community culture there for years.

It has changed a bit with people unfamiliar with the area moving in and trying to make it home for them and their families... but the change is minimal and incremental at best. The proof of that is that the same size houses in BHS are still priced a good couple hundred thousand below a place of comparable size on the East Side.

Now that the prices have risen to way above the $300k in the BHS area but still so far below the East Side, the only buyers that could possibly be foolish enough to undertake a property there must be from outside the area and banking on real estate only going up.

Nobody who makes the $150k+ to qualify for the financing would really want to LIVE there now. I know that I sure don't.

 
At 8/09/2006 02:01:00 PM , Blogger Athena said...

As for how Sonoma will look in the next 20 years... I think the gap between the haves and have nots will be much wider, and there will be many a tale about how Mom & Dad once had it all and lost it all in the big real estate crash.

:-/

 
At 8/09/2006 03:40:00 PM , Anonymous ben said...

Obviously the situation cannot continue as it is. I am a physician and find myself priced out of this community.
I haven't moved yet as I am convinced that a correction of massive proprtions is coming to a theatre here in Sonoma county.
I will bet big bucks that by this time next year the median price will be 40% off the recent high ie. 340K.
Yes sirree one big major correction is headed this way.

 
At 8/09/2006 03:45:00 PM , Blogger Athena said...

Dr. Ben said: I will bet big bucks that by this time next year the median price will be 40% off the recent high ie. 340K.
Yes sirree one big major correction is headed this way.

From your fingers to the goddess' ears!

 
At 8/09/2006 11:56:00 PM , Blogger moonvalley said...

just telling a friend about the major correction on the way...they gasped. Also warning this one not to buy, and wait wait wait!

 
At 8/10/2006 02:59:00 PM , Blogger Athena said...

Well done MV. Been sending out links to a few loved ones talking about buying. Don't even want to open my knowitall mouth... so just forwarding the links and hopefully they will come to the conclusion themselves.

 
At 8/11/2006 10:42:00 AM , Blogger bustaboom said...

what a dump.

 
At 8/11/2006 10:58:00 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I would NOT pay more than $30k for that. You call that a kitchen? My first (minimal) apartment had a better kitchen/dining setup.

Athena: I drove 12/101 a couple weeks ago when returning from NorCal. A demolition derby of celtel-driven SUVs until 12 split away from the never-ending new McMansions and struck off across the delta to the 5.

 
At 8/11/2006 02:38:00 PM , Blogger Athena said...

Total demolition derby! LOL... I drive an suv too... though try to stay off the phone in the car. don't want the hassle and tired of the cell phone being like a leash. But I have toyed with getting a rubber bumper all the way around the truck just so I could play bumper cars with the dumber drivers doing 12mph in the left lane as they cruise their excursion like they are driving a lounge chair down the highway drinking their latte, and chatting on their phone like they are in their flipping living room. WTF?

 
At 8/11/2006 11:15:00 PM , Blogger jmf said...

hello from germany,

great site and always fun to read!

http://www.immobilienblasen.blogspot.com/

 
At 8/14/2006 11:52:00 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

The worst part was my sidetrip to Boonville in Mendocino County. Boonville. "Boont" -- a town whose claim to fame was it had evolved its own unique language, also called "Boont".

Not only was Boont completely Die Yuppie Scum, I got stuck on the Clerdle Pike (Boonville/Cloverdale Road) between a celtel-driven Volvo creeping along 10-20 under normal speed and a celtel-driven luxury SUV trying to mount my Honda doggie-style.

(One of my side routes to work in SoCal is similar two-lane mountain road; the timidly-driven lane blocker is usually a luxury SUV with "Bush Stole The Election!" and/or "Impeach Bushitler!" bumper stickers. Now that's surreal.)

--Same "12/101 demolition derby" anonymous as above.

 
At 8/16/2006 03:43:00 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Interesting, and not surprising now. No one wants to buy that POS for their current price.

Question: How did you get the 1997 sale price data?

 
At 8/16/2006 10:26:00 PM , Blogger Athena said...

Hi Anon,

I used the zillow price graph to pinpoint the 1997 price.

 

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