The Sunnyvale house that sold for $782K over asking? There’s more where that came from

Yesterday’s post about that house in Sunnyvale — you know, the one that sold for $782,000 over its listing price — mentioned that it is one of dozens in the South Bay that sold for way “over asking” in the last month.

Lost amid all the hoopla over the modest house on Prunelle Court — it’s less than 2,000 square feet — were any details about the 50 or so other “over asking” homes.

So we’ve looked over the list, which was compiled by Alain Pinel agent Mark Wong, who drew his results from the Multiple Listing Service.

Here are a few highlights.

In Sunnyvale, Wong identified 27 homes that sold for at least $200,000 over asking. Those included two that sold for between $400,000 and $500,000 over asking, and one of those — a three-bedroom home of less than 1,200 square feet — turns out to be something of a shocker. It listed for $1,398,000 and sold for $1,831,000 — $433,000 over asking for a bungalow-sized house.

Among the group of 27, 11 sold for more than $300,000 over asking (but less than $400,000 over) and 13 sold for more than $200,000 above the listing price (but less than $300,000 over). In that lower rung were seven townhouses — each selling for more than $200,000 above asking.

This craziness is important because it is an indicator of Sunnyvale’s transformation from a modest middle-class community to one where only the wealthy can afford to buy.

It is a snapshot of what has been happening to Silicon Valley, generally, during the price run-up of the last five-plus years. The valley — make that the whole Bay Area — is on the verge of becoming an enclave for the rich, or those lucky enough to have purchased a house years ago.

Getting back to Wong’s list, it includes 10 homes in Cupertino that sold for $200,000 or more above the asking price in the last month. One sold for — get this — $507,000 over asking. Three sold for more than $400,000 over asking (but less than $500,000 over) and two sold for more than $300,000 over asking (but less than $400,000 over).

Among the eight homes on the list in Saratoga, one went for more than $400,000 above list and two for more than $300,000 over. The six West San Jose homes on the list were a relative bargain: while all sold for more than $200,000 over asking, none went for as much as $300,000 over.

As we’ve said before, over-asking bidding is in part a result of savvy marketing by real estate agents; they intentionally price homes below their market value in order to entice buyers — who then get into the bidding wars that inevitably break out in a tight market with historically low inventory.

But the bidding is not all attributable to the shrewdness of agents.

One recent study showed that a household income of $179,000 is now needed to buy a median-priced, single-family house in the nine-county Bay Area. We are living in a transformed region, where many people — unless they draw the big salaries often paid by major tech companies — are unable to buy a home.

Photo: The house in Sunnyvale that sold for $2,470,000 — $782,000 above its listing price. (Courtesy/Dave Clark and Keller Williams)


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  • prescott2

    If you want to write a story about the actual rise in housing prices in Sunnyvale or other Bay Area communities please try to do some real analysis and not just promote or sensationalize the realtors marketing strategy of under pricing in order to entice bidding wars.