The Daily Ping

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January 25th, 2000

Home prices

As some of you may know, I’ve been shopping for a house recently. In Northern Virginia, asking prices are above average and it’s clearly a seller’s market, but boy do I feel luck after reading this article from the San Jose Mercury. It details a 792 square foot house on a lot that’s less than 5/100ths of an acre in Palo Alto, CA (which is considered the most expensive place in the States to live).

Let me state before I disclose the asking price of this “house” (its size is more indicative of a studio apartment) that I was in Palo Alto last June, and though I loved the town (and would probably place it in my top 5 favorite smallish towns), there is no way I’d pay this much money for a house there.

Get this — $409,000. This is almost twice as much as what I’m paying for a house in Northern Virginia that’s four times the size on a lot that’s small, but still twice as big.

The thing is, people in the Valley are paying these outrageous asking prices. I can see where salaries out there for hi-tech employees are probably pretty good, but they can’t be in proportion to the price of homes.

A friend was telling me how a studio apartment in San Francisco can go for over $1000/month. There’s simply no way that a minimum wage employee can afford even the cheapest of apartments in the city. I guess that explains the outrageous number of homeless people in the city.

So, while I may complain that my mortgage payment is going up about 50% from my current rent, I thank my lucky stars that those outrageous prices from the Valley haven’t quite hit the DC area yet. And when they do, I’ll be there, sale sign in hand, ready to make a killing. -ram

Posted in Miscellaneous

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