Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving!

I would like to wish you and your families a Happy Thanksgiving!  Thanksgiving is a time to take a step back from our daily lives and really give thanks for all that we are blessed with in our lives.

There were a couple of Netflix documentaries that really hit home for me in the last month that I wanted to share.

The first was called Small Voices.  For those of you that have children, watching these Cambodian families and children trying to desperately to survive with little hope of getting out of their situation really saddened me.  It really reminds me of how great a life our families have here and the opportunities that are available to us if we just worked hard towards our goals.  Take a moment to remind your kids why they should be thankful for all that they have!

The second documentary was called Happy.  We have been taught at a young age to pursue multiple levels of education as a means to get a good job and when we are in that job we keep trying to climb that corporate ladder.  Many of us pursue wealth, bigger homes and nicer cars.  However, this movie indicated that once your basic needs have been fulfilled, getting more pay doesn't bring more happiness.  Some key factors to happiness identified were being a part of a community of friends/family, giving back as part of a greater good, showing compassion to others and also doing what you love.  Perhaps this Thanksgiving and onward you will find more happiness as well!

Lastly, I just wanted to thank each and every one of you for your trust and referrals over the last 8 years.  Next year will be my 9th year in the business and without your endless support, Alan Wang Realty would not be here today.

I wish you and your families a thankful as well as happy Thanksgiving and rest of 2013!

Monday, October 8, 2012

Q3 2012 Real Estate Update

Q3 2012 Real Estate Update

Welcome to the Q3 2012 Alan Wang Realty Real Estate update.  For those of you that are new to my site, in addition to my Twitter feeds ( which are real time updates, every quarter I put out a quarterly review of how the market is performing, direct activity I am experiencing and also critical reminders.  You will recall in my Q2 Real Estate update that I declared that bidding wars were back.  This has come to a surprise to many, but as I've been calling out in my updates since 2010, our market has been steadily on the incline for the last 2 and a half years and now in the last 2 quarters the market is simply red hot.  Since Q2 the market has held steady with 5 to 15 offers per house.  Make no mistake it's a Seller's market and those of you that have bought homes and have been waiting to sell, contact me so I can run a Comparable Market Analysis to see if it's a good time to sell or not based on when you bought the home.  If you have some equity, we can take advantage of this market and plan for the next steps in parallel.  If you are looking to buy, I've been sitting down with each buyer to educate them on what it takes to win, let me know if you want to sit down and discuss the right strategy.

Root Cause of the Bidding Wars

Many people ask me what has been the cause of these bidding wars.  At a high level, the Bay Area has always had a density problem; a large population, lack of space to build housing for a population that values purchasing real estate for their jobs, investment, schools and beautiful weather.  However over the last few years interest rates have been at historical lows.

There have been some key factors that have jump started growth this year.  Due to an influx of hiring from outside states, this has increased demand for a complacent group of home renters (many were potential home buyers) that have been enjoying lower rents over the last couple of years.  As these 1 to 2 year leases come due, landlords are raising rents to market prices to meet the ever increasing demand for the low supply of rentals available.  These renters run the calculation of rent verses buying and many make the decision to start putting their money towards a home at least they can take advantage of some write offs and try to earn appreciation in the process.  These renters have flooded the market and have joined regular home buyers creating additional competition.  There is also the human factor, many Buyers in the market creates confidence and home buying goes viral!

Macroeconomic Environment

Real Estate in major cities in the rest of the United States are also showing finally showing lower inventory levels and a flurry of activity.  It goes to show how unique the valley is in that we are 2.5 years ahead of the rest of the nation due to the strong local technology micro economy that continues to lead innovation and attract investment and pursuit of talent.  Recall that interest rates have been at historic lows.  The Federal reserve has stated their plan to keep interest rates low and will not want to make any drastic changes especially for the election year or even in the near term.  The Fed has upped it's game with Quantitative Easing 3, where it is planning to purchase additional agency mortgage backed securities about $40B per month which will push long term rates down even lower.  If you haven't refinanced, it maybe time to take a look at how much lower rates can go.  Again this is more of a reaction to the entire United States market and the Bay Area can only benefit from this since most the valley is generally employed and can take advantage of the low rates.

New Buyer Real Estate Introduction Guide

Exclusively for my clients, I have compiled a Buyer Real Estate Introduction Guide fresh off the press.  Let me know if you or someone with Real Estate needs would like a copy!

Property Taxes Due on November 1

Property Taxes are due on November 1, 2012 but late after December 10, 2012.  What that means is that you have until December 10th to pay this bill.  (Do give a few days for the mail)

To check the status of your tax status go to the county website

The first installment is due and payable on November 1. However, you have until December 10 to make your payment.  (Always give yourself a few days, the county is not flexible on late payments).

Homes Sold to My Buyers - Details located at

- 1070 Norfolk West San Jose Condominium with Cupertino homes against 11 Buyers
- 528 Vincent in Mountain View, won against 4 other bidders in court, probate sale
- 371 Imperial in Daly City sold against 5 other Buyers
- New Home Development first release lottery of against 17 other buyers and Buyers win
- San Jose brand new Townhome sold to my Buyer with 8 other Buyers present for the lottery
- 826 Tulane in Mountain View with Los Altos schools sold against 5 offers
- Over $150,000 of upgrades model home sold to my Buyers for $614,000, community is complete in Santa Clara

Other Examples of Competitive Homes

- Single Family home in Sunnyvale against 3 offers, Buyers won
- Sunnyvale Single Family home lost against 12 offers, 1 offer was all cash $105,000 over list price
- Fremont Condominium 6 offers, all cash won this, Buyers did not bid due to competition
- Townhome Mountain View lost against 4 offers


It is a challenging market and you will need an experienced Realtor that knows how to represent you and win in this market.  On the selling side, let me evaluate your home and see if it makes sense or not to sell.  Whether you or your friends and family are looking to buy or sell property, I thank you for always referring Alan Wang Realty!



Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Mid Year 2012 Real Estate Update

Bidding wars are back, I repeat bidding wars are back.  The Silicon Valley has been 2 years ahead of the rest of the country as far as a real estate recovery and now the beginning of an upward trending curve is upon us.  I've been predicting from the end of 2009 that the market was picking up, watched increased buying activity in 2010, even more buying activity in 2011 and now the bidding wars are in full swing in 2012.  Literally in the last month, I watched week by week as areas that have been slow in the last few years, suddenly have a slew of Sale Pending homes.  Areas that I've been calling opportunities disappeared in just a few weeks.  Inventory is extremely low and there are 5 to 20 buyers bidding per home in the Bay Area!  Homes are spending less than a week on the market before they are sold against multiple offers.

Micro-economic Climate

There are four factors driving this demand: low and downward trending interest rates, stalled home purchase plans during the recession (both factors have been constant throughout the downturn), the latest are increasing rents hitting renters right at their pockets and some IPO money giving Buyers the down payments they didn't have before.  Another intangible is just unavoidable human behavior; when everyone else is buying individuals decide to join the crowds.

Real Time Competitive Examples

- Just last week my clients competed with 6 offers on a Mountain View Townhome, other offers went at least $70,000 over list price, no contingencies to beat us out
- 4-plex in San Jose had 19 offers, $70,000 over list price was not enough to win this property, there was no appraisal contingency
- Sunnyvale Ponderosa Park Single Family Home, 11 offers we went over list price by $91,000 to win, no contingencies
- Sunnyvale Ponderosa Park Single Family Home, 15 offers, someone offered $100,000 over list price to win it, no contingencies
- Mountain View Eichler had 15 offers, winning offer was $111,000 over list, no contingencies
- Palo Alto homes I have heard $300,000 over list price, no contingencies as well as all cash offers are abundant
- San Ramon - Lost against 5 offers, even San Ramon is showing signs of life!
- Fremont - Lost against 7 other offers and people were going over the comparables price!
- Some new home builders are doing lotteries, but most are taking advantage of the market and moving to the bidding system as well

If you are a Buyer, talk to me to really understand what it takes to get a property in this market.  It will take a major adjustment in your mindset, expectations and strategy.

Macroeconomic Climate

The rest of the country is also showing life in multiple markets as existing home sales are on the rise, prices are increasing and distressed sales reducing.  The National Association of Realtors at last is able to declare that "a recovery is underway."  An excellent detailed news article and video on this subject

Seller's Market

If you are a Seller and have been thinking about selling your home, contact me for a Competitive Market Analysis.  Depending on the location of your home, when you bought it and for what price, I will advise you if it is a good time to sell your property.  At a high level it's a Seller's market, I would suggest that you take advantage of it depending on your next move.

Buyer's Beware

Buyer's if you haven't met with me lately, be sure to grab time to discuss how to win in this market.  This market requires aggressive behavior and deep pockets to cover the appraisal differences if needed.  This may or not be the right market for you, we should definitely define the strategies that give you the best chance of attaining your next home.

Still Available Tri-Plex in Palo Alto

103 Tennyson in Palo Alto is still available.  We've had 5 offers on the property but haven't quite worked out the right combination of price and terms.  Let me know if you or someone you know have any interest in the profitable investment property.

Details online here at:

Exclusive New Home Developments

I have information on 3 upcoming new home developments, 2 coming soon in June and another in September.  Remember, always go in with me on the first visit for new home constructions or they won't let me represent you or work with you thereafter.  I also have great relationships with most of these builders which will make getting you the best deal easier and smoother.

Recent Home Sales Activity

- 1021 Iris Avenue in Sunnyvale - Beat out 10 other offers to win this property
- 572 Minor Avenue in San Jose - 4-Plex in San Jose, 19 offers, first offer backed out and we were in the backup position!  Good spot to be in, no buyer's remorse =)
- New Home Development, South Bay - Clients purchased Model Home with over $100,000 in upgrades
- 103 Tennyson in Palo Alto - Tri-plex in Old Palo Alto with over 5 offers, unable to agree on terms or price
- Won 3 bids lost 8 bids thus far this year, madness!

Details Located at:

Again I thank you all for your trust and referrals throughout the years.  I hope you and your family had a wonderful Memorial Day and here's to a wild 2012 in the Real Estate market!

Monday, March 26, 2012

Featured on House Hunters Episode 5802!

I was featured on House Hunters Episode 5802, "Convenience is costly in the Bay Area". For a synopsis of the episode, details are available here:

Here is Part 1 of the Episode:

Here is Part 2 of the Episode:

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

My Recent House Hunters Episode!

Heartfelt Thanks!

First off a big thank you to all of you who tuned into my House Hunters Episode HNT-5802H that aired on March 6th at 7PM/10PM pacific on HGTV. I've had so many pings on all social networking feeds from co-workers old and new, friends all the way back until high school and people I interact with everyday. It is amazing how many people watch this show! Also a big thanks to Debs and Ken for getting me to audition! I was so busy last year but I am so happy that we did this! I will try to post a video if it is ok with House Hunters!

For those of you that missed the episode here is the quick snippet:

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Q1 2012 Real Estate Update

A Big Thank You to My Clients!

First off I wanted to thank all my clients for your kind referrals and trust in my real estate services. In April I will be on my 9th year in the business, which has been fully based on your trust and referrals. I cannot thank you all enough as my clients for continuing to turn to me for all your real estate needs.

9 Year Anniversary Reflection

As I reflect on the last 8+ plus years in the business, what really drives me is being able to help people who are buying or selling the biggest assets of their lives. Most people don't buy and sell often enough, it is a daunting undertaking alone. I often get clients that work with agents that they don't necessarily trust or are having a tough time getting them to be responsive and to move quickly on their transactions. It was my own experience with an under performing agent that spurred me into this business. I wanted to build a business based on a high level of trust and integrity, guaranteed delivery on my promises, fast execution, as well as the highest levels of service as you deserve in the biggest transaction of your lives. This continues to be the case even as my business has grown, that are my foundational values that I operate on.

Keller Williams Awards

It is also with your support that I have been able to win 2 Top Agent Awards in my office; Top Agent Written Volume and Top Agent Closed Volume. It is an extreme honor as my office has over 200+ agents to be able to earn this amongst such strong performing co-workers.

Market Analysis

As I have mentioned in multiple blogs throughout the last 2 years, there is no recession in the Bay Area and Buyers are out fighting for properties. This demonstrated itself as 91% of my clients in 2011 were Buyers. 2011 showed competition in the good school districts which has always been the case, but overall reasonable opportunities with limited competition in other areas. Q1 2012 this has NOT been the case! Due to low inventory levels and a flood of Buyers in the market, there is competition at every corner. Just last week I had 4 Buyers contact me that they were interested in looking for homes.

Competitive Examples
  • One of my clients offered on a 44 year old Townhome in Mountain View that had 13 offers and the winning bid was aggressive in all categories
  • Another client offered on a Mountain View 4-Plex Bank Owned Property which had a total of 5 offers
  • Another client offered on a Sunnyvale Townhome that had 3 offers
Silicon Valley the Land of Gold

Clients ask me why things are so different in the Bay Area than the rest of the country. The answer is Technology and the recent emergence of Social Media. Linkedin, Zynga and Groupon are recent IPO's that have brought equity to the valley, and most look to put these funds to purchase their first homes. With the upcoming Facebook IPO, there will be a flood of cash into the valley and Real Estate prices will sore. If you are a Buyer, I suggest moving quickly before the Facebook lockout period ends (usually 6 months after IPO). These Buyers will be paying cash and closing in 7 days and they will be tough to compete with.

Although the Bay Area is doing well, real estate continues to suffer in the rest of the country. Interest rates continue to be at their lowest rates which is also an opportunity for us in the Valley.

Recent Transactions
  • 555 Crawford Drive, Sunnyvale was an off market home that sold to my Buyers
  • New Townhome Development sold, let me know if you are interested, this was competitive as well
  • 3 written offers lost due to overbidding by competitors
New Home Developments

There have been a few new home developments last year, however most of them are sold out. In the Spring, Summer and Fall I am tracking a few more new home developments that are in progress. Ask me about them and I can keep you in the loop once they are released.


2012 will be another low home inventory and high buying demand kind of year; where there won't be enough homes to keep up with the Buyers which means competition. I am mainly speaking of Santa Clara County close to Technology companies, but there still are pockets of opportunities. If you are a Buyer be ready to compete with other Buyers. My suggestion is find your home, follow my strategies and it will put you in the best position to win these homes. The longer you take to adjust and question the situation, the more competition you will face later on and may even end up buying a home when things are at their peak.

If you are a Seller talk to me about a Selling strategy to maximize your home value, it's a great time to sell if you have solid equity in your home.

I am looking forward to a busy buying spree in 2012 for many of my Buyers. You can trust that the strategies I have will win you the home, thank you for your trust over the years and I look forward to serving your real estate needs.