Housing prices may be leveling off, as the experts contend, but here in the Tri-Valley it’s hard to find homes that most would categorize as “affordable.” Hard – but not impossible.
Average or median priced homes in Livermore, Pleasanton and Dublin are priced at about $1million or more.
The top end of the market runs $3 million to nearly $8 million.
But entry-level prices run start as low as $330,219.
Livermore has the lowest average and median prices for residential property, as well as the lowest prices for detached, single-family homes.
But Dublin leads when it comes to lowest priced homes overall. That’s because Dublin has more condominiums and townhouses for sale, and they tend to be priced lower than comparable single-family homes.
As a comparison, Dublin has 40 homes in this category while Livermore has 33 and Pleasanton only 20.
Condominiums as well as townhouses can be very attractively priced, but buyers should keep in mind that they will also have to pay homeowner’s association dues of anywhere from $200 to $600 per month. The upside is the HOA generally maintains the grounds as well as the exterior of the homes, plus may feature such amenities as pools, tennis courts, clubhouses, etc.
Only three homes in the area – all condominiums – are listed under $400,000.
The condo priced at $330,219 is a one-bedroom, one-bath unit located in The Terraces in Dublin.
At this price, it is well below market price. In fact, it is part of the City of Dublin’s first-time homebuyer program that helps subsidize purchases for low- to moderate-income families who qualify for this benefit. (A similar unit not in that program was listed at $459,900 is currently under contract.)
The next-lowest priced unit is a two-bedroom condo on Murrieta Boulevard in Livermore. This two-story unit has been nicely remodeled with maple cabinets and granite countertops and is priced at $359,900.
The third unit, another one-bedroom, one-bath condo in Dublin, is priced at $399,999, down from the original price of $485,000.
A unit in the same development, but with more square footage, is available for $425,000, making these the only homes in Dublin priced under the half-million mark.
Next up is Livermore, with a single-story three-bedroom townhouse north of I-580 and – surprise! – a detached home, both in the high 400s.
The townhouse has new carpets and laminate flooring. The bathroom has been updated and the unit has a private back patio.
The detached house is a fixer-upper and the sellers are looking for an all-cash offer. For these reasons, it is likely to be purchased by an investor.
Finally we get to Pleasanton, with three condos in Laguna Vista priced in the high 400s.
The each has two bedrooms and one bath. The two single-story units are 798 sq.ft. each. The two-story unit is a little larger at 903 sq.ft., although it may feel similar in size because staircases take up a certain amount of space in a home.
All have laminate flooring and other nice updates.
As we move into the $500,000s, we see larger units, including duets and a couple of duet-style single-family homes.
All but one of these homes has multiple bedrooms, and the only one-bedroom unit – a three-story condo in Dublin Ranch priced at $525,000 – boasts 1,243 sq.ft., making it larger than many of the homes with two or three bedrooms.
The most affordable homes in this category are a couple of similarly spacious two-story townhouses in Livermore priced at $500,000 and $518,000 respectively. The first, with three bedrooms and two baths, is north of the freeway. The second, with two bedrooms and one and a half baths, is about eight blocks from Downtown.
A second similar unit close to Downtown has a price tag of $530,000.
Priced about the same at $529,000 is a 15-year-old single-level condo off of Vasco Road.
And the last of the Livermore offerings are two duets home priced at $550,000.
The charming Springtown duet is only 830 sq.ft., but has a large, private back yard and is located at the end of a cul-de-sac bordering on open space.
The second duet, also north of I-580, has two bedrooms and one and a quarter baths, plus a fireplace.
Pleasanton has two more offerings under $550,000.
Priced at $539,950 is a single-level third-floor condo in Smoketree Commons. This two-bedroom, two-bath unit boasts vaulted ceilings, updated kitchen and bathrooms, and even a wood-burning fireplace.
Or for $550,000, you could have a two-story, two-bedroom, one-bath remodeled townhouse. Both are located close to Downtown, just off of Vineyard Avenue.
There it is: 18 homes priced under $550,000. The next category up – $551,000 to $600,000 – offers 10 more condos, duets and townhouses in the three cities.
Making one of those properties your new home will involve getting pre-approved for a mortgage, finding the right home, presenting a competitive offer, negotiating price and terms, ordering inspections, and traversing the intricacies of the homebuying process.
If you are looking to purchase a property of any price, contact your trusted Realtor today. He or she can help you understand the process and find the perfect home for you and your family.
Cher Wollard is a Realtor with Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Drysdale Properties, Livermore.