impact of schools on home prices
Recently I have noticed a couple of very high sales prices for properties in east Los Gatos with Union Schools, especially Alta Vista, Carlton, and Noddin schools. It should be noted that ALL of the elementary and middle schools throughout Los Gatos, Monte Sereno, and the Los Gatos Mountains are very strong and can boast excellent school test scores, notably good parental involvement, and pleasant campuses. Even so, homes closest to downtown Los Gatos and with the Los Gatos Union School District have always sold for a noticeable amount more than those outside of that area. Often the delta is 10-20%, but it can very a lot. On a couple of occasions recently, though, it seemed like at least some homes selling in the Union or Campbell schools are were gleaning prices more typically seen closer to downtown.
So I started to wonder – Is the gap between the two major areas (in the schools / not in the schools) shrinking? Let’s see by running the numbers in the MLS for one or two segments of the market.
Multiple Listing Service study criteria:
The search I created was for houses in Los Gatos (not Monte Sereno or San Jose on the border), zip codes 95030, 95032 (sorry, Los Gatos Mountains not included in this study); home age 20-60 years, lot size 6,000 to 10,000 SF. These are “normal homes” and not luxury or estate properties, of course.
Los Gatos 95030 and 95032 with Los Gatos Union School District
# of Listings: 9 AVG VALUES: age: 34 years days on market: 28 size of home: 1,798 SF size of lot: 6,342 price per SF: $901.94
average list price: $1,472,872 average sale price: $1,480,000
Los Gatos 95030 and 95032 with Union School District or Campbell Union School District
# of Listings: 15 AVG VALUES: age: 49 years days on market: 22 size of home: 1,912 SF size of lot: 8,416 SF price per SF: $712.23
average list price: $1,245,033 average sale price: $1,297,700
As you can see, it’s not really wise to use just “price per square foot” to compare these areas, because the age of the property and the lot size are significantly different. I approached it also by trying to target just the sale price at about $1.5 million, but the data was so limited that I could not exclude newer homes or smaller parcels. So let’s see what you can get in these two areas for that amount, or close to it. Continue reading