Got Visitors in for the Holidays? Looking for Something Unique to Do?

December 13, 2009

Campo Di Bocce (Los Gatos and Livermore)If you have family & friends coming to visit you this holiday season, perhaps you’re wondering what you might do that would be a fun and a unique experience for them.  What about a trip to Campo di Bocce? In addition to the regular menu selections, now there’s a fixed price menu option of a three course meal, with or without wine, at good prices ($19 without wine, $27 with it). If the weather’s good, dine outside – and make your friends from snowy places insanely jealous of our weather. If not, there are lots of tables indoors too.

Want to play a little bocce too? It’s $10 per person to play (unless you’re staying in a hotel here in Los Gatos – they have specials for visitors, just show your room key for discounts on playing bocce as well as your food & beverage tab).

Campo di Bocce is located at 565 University Avenue at the corner of Andrews in Los Gatos. You can reach them by phone at 408 395-7596 or visit them online at CampoDiBocce.com.

(This is not a paid post and I was not asked to write it – I have eaten there a number of times, indoors and out, and have found the food and service to be very good.)

Los Gatos Real Estate Update, Sold Data in for November 2009

December 05, 2009

The Silicon Valley Real Estate Report, including data for Los Gatos homes for sale and sold in November, is now ready. Below please find a summary for the key points and a link to view the entire report.

The Los Gatos condo and townhouse market had been improving in months prior but seems to have suffered a little setback in November:

Trends At a Glance Nov 2009 Previous Month Year-over Year
Median Price $573,500 $644,000 (-10.9%) $536,250 (+6.9%)
Average Price $560,394 $652,136 (-14.1%) $570,625 (-1.8%)
No. of Sales 8 11 (-27.3%) 4 (+100.0%)
Pending Properties 12 18 (-33.3%) 4 (+200.0%)
Active 39 37 (+5.4%) 42 (-7.1%)
Sale vs. List Price 96.5% 97.1% (-0.6%) 92.6% (+4.3%)
Days on Market 95 99 (-4.5%) 77 (+24.2%)

Click the following link to see the whole online report for Los Gatos townhomes and condominiums.

For the Los Gatos single family home market, there’s noticeable improvement. Inventory is declining, prices are nudging up from earlier this year (and also from a year ago in many parts of the local market). The trend appears to be moving toward a more balanced market overall. There remain some mixed indicators, though – hinting that the recovery is not happening uniformly across all price points, neighborhoods, etc.

Trends At a Glance Nov 2009 Previous Month Year-over Year
Median Price $1,360,000 $1,110,000 (+22.5%) $1,060,000 (+28.3%)
Average Price $1,412,730 $1,182,290 (+19.5%) $2,025,000 (-30.2%)
No. of Sales 31 25 (+24.0%) 9 (+244.4%)
Pending Properties 50 51 (-2.0%) 20 (+150.0%)
Active 118 134 (-11.9%) 195 (-39.5%)
Sale vs. List Price 96.2% 96.2% (0.0%) 94.6% (+1.8%)
Days on Market 63 52 (+20.0%) 36 (+73.1%)

To read the entire report online, please click on the following link to visit my Real Estate Report for Los Gatos houses and estates.

General Comments for the real estate market in Santa Clara County

The median price for single family, re-sale homes (houses and duet homes) surpassed $600,000 for the first time since August 2008. Inventory remained in a downward trend in November: down 66.7% compared to November 2008. Pending sales were up a whopping 90.4% year-over-year.

For San Jose, Saratoga, Monte Sereno, and the rest of Santa Clara County, please visit
www.popehandy.rereport.com and pull the specific area that interests you (for districts within San Jose, please first select the city of San Jose, then choose Cambrian Park, Almaden Valley, etc.)
There is also a 4 page printable version with more articles here: http://rereport.com/scc/print/Mary.PopeHandySCC.pdf.

Please contact me for assistance with your particular situation & area.

Holiday Events in Los Gatos for 2009

November 23, 2009

It’s late November and that means the holidays are almost here: Thanksgiving, Hanukkah, Christmas and New Year’s are all just around the corner. It’s time to count our blessings, share the joy and spend time with loved ones. . . .Maybe, too, it can be a time to give back to the community and do some volunteer work. More on that below!

Holiday 2009 Events in the Town of Los Gatos:

Tue 11/24/09 7:30pm Thanksgiving Interfaith Service Congregation Shir Hadash
Fri 11/27/09 6:00 – 10:00pm Fantasy Train of Lights – 1st night Oak Meadow Park – details below
Thur 12/03/09 10am – 4pm Summit League

Are There Many Short Sale or Bank Owned Homes for Sale in Los Gatos?

November 16, 2009

Are there bargain homes to be found in Los Gatos (and Monte Sereno), as in a lot of short sales or bank owned houses, condos & townhomes on the market? These types of properties have been in far shorter supply in the Los Gatos area than in most of Silicon Valley (San Jose, Santa Clara County).  Yesterday I logged onto MLSListings.com and did the research on the “Area 16” or Los Gatos – Monte Sereno real estate market – tedious, but interesting. (Area 16 includes Monte Sereno, consists of the 95030 and 95032 zip codes and a sliver of Campbell and San Jose, Cambrian Park – but is about 95% Los Gatos).  Results below:

Los Gatos home sale types: regular, short sale, bank owned (REO) houses, condos and townhomes as of Nov 15 2009

If you are a Los Gatos homebuyer, you’ll find that there are not very many distressed properties on the market. 

Los Gatos Houses for Sale 

Of the 142 active listings in “area 16” (the Los Gatos area, including Monte Sereno and an exceedingly small sliver of Campbell and San Jose – Cambrian Park), only 10 are distressed homes for sale (short sales and REOs combined).  That’s just 7% of the available pool of Los Gatos houses for sale are distressed properties (4% short sale, 3% bank owned).

Los Gatos Condos and Townhomes for Sale

Among the condo market, about 10% is short sales and none is a bank owned property.

Pending & Closed Sales of Homes in Los Gatos

The pendings show a lot more activity among short sales – but will they close escrow?  (Unfortunately a significant percentage of short sales never close.  Buyers get tired of waiting, banks request things that sellers won’t do, such as sign a promissory note, or foreclosure happens prior to the short sale being completed – just a few of the reasons why the success rate is lower than with either regular sales or REOs.)  Although about half of all homes in escrow are short sales, a look at the closeds over the last month belies that most won’t close – only about 3% of the combined closed sales in the last month are short sales. Fourteen percent are bank owned – still a small fraction of the combined market (12% are distressed properties).

Will the info (and percentages of sale type) be different if we view it “year to date”?It’s pretty similar in that the distressed homes in Los Gatos are a small pert of the market – among the single family homes sold in 2009 in Los Gatos, about 6% are short sales, 11% are bank owned homes (about 17% of the solds are “distressed” sales).  Interestingly, the amount of recently closed houses that are distressed is a lot less than the year-to-date. 

Among the condo and townhome market, year to date about 8% of the sales are short sales and about 5% are bank owned home sales (13% are distressed sales).  For the current month, it’s a similar 12%.

The distressed element of the Los Gatos real estate market is significant but a minor part of the available, pending, and sold properties in the Los Gatos area.  The lower prices of short sales and bank owned homes will have a negative effect on home valuations, but not nearly so strong as is seen in most of the San Jose area.  Depending on your price point and location, there may be more or less of an impact on your home’s value (or the value of the home you wish to buy). 

For more posts on short sales & bank owned homes in & near Los Gatos, please see:
http://www.realtown.com/LiveInLosGatos/blog/short-sales-and-bank-owned-homes

Los Gatos to Get New Mayor on Monday

November 14, 2009

Townsfolk know, but newcomers may not, that in the Town of Los Gatos, the residents do not vote for the mayor or vice mayor. Instead, we vote for the members of the town council, who in turn vote each year on which member of the council will take the jobs of mayor and vice mayor.  You can read more details about our form of government in the Los Gatos town website.

On Monday (11-16-2009) at 7pm, mayor Mike Wasserman will be stepping down as mayor and the council will vote a new member into that post and have the swearing-in also. 

The Los Gatos Chamber of Commerce is hosting a reception immediately following the meeting in the lobby of the town council chambers at 110 E. Main Street, Los Gatos. You can view the informational flyer for the reception online via the chamber’s site.

Mike Wasserman will next be running for Santa Clara County Supervisor.  You can read about him and his campaign on his website, http://www.mikewasserman.com/

Monte Sereno Market Post on Valley of Hearts Delight Blog

November 12, 2009

Today on my Valley of Hearts Delight blog, I posted a long article on the Monte Sereno real estate market.  In places I compared and contrasted it with the Los Gatos & Saratoga markets, so readers of this blog might find that piece interesting as well.

The Monte Sereno Real Estate Market Update, November 2009

Halloween Events In and Near Los Gatos in 2009

October 27, 2009

Happy Halloween!Halloween is fast approaching, but there are still a few more events in and near Los Gatos to get you into the spirit!

At Oak Meadow Park, once again the Los Gatos Chamber of Commerce is putting on the Haunted Halloween Forest and Goblyn’s Glen (to benefit the Billy Jones Wildcat Railroad and more). For tickets and more information, please call 408-395-7433 or visit Website.  Next two events are Friday and Saturday of this week, from 7 – 10pm.

There are many, many more Halloween events the rest of this week posted on Craigslist. If you click on the link below, it will take you to an extensive collection of Halloween events in Siicon Valley.  Scroll down to

October 26 – 31
 

South Bay:

and there you’ll find 22 items listed in San Jose, Saratoga, Sunnyvale, Los Altos and all over the south bay.

Happy Halloween!