Bull Unleashed in San Mateo - Page 2

‘Hyper-priced market’ cited as shockwaves trail first-ever $3M Highlands Eichler sale
Fridays on the Homefront
A view down the Highlands' Lexington Avenue thoroughfare. Photo: Sabrina Huang

In anticipation of retiring this month and relocating to Vancouver, British Columbia, the Briscos recently prepared to sell their beloved Highlands home. They contacted Sennett, whose recent sale of another Highlands Eichler, for $2.38M on an asking price of $1,998,000, prompted them to ask $2.5M.

"It seems amazing to me," Barry admits of the prompt sale (one day after the first and only showing) of the home, now in escrow. "I would have been happy with $2.6, $2.7."

"Eichlers that are well prepared and aggressively marketed are selling at a pretty high premium," Boyenga commented of the sale.

"It was an exceptional house," Sennett cautioned, conceding that it does not have a great view while noting its flawless renovation. "I hope all the people in the neighborhood don't think, 'Oh, my house is worth $3 million."

Fridays on the Homefront
One of the numerous enjoyable views around the Highlands. Photo: Sabrina Huang

Still Sennett, who bought his own Highlands home for $365,000 in 1988, said proudly, "An Eichler in the Highlands is one of the hottest properties you're going to find on the Peninsula per square foot."

Centrally located between San Francisco and Silicon Valley, the San Mateo Highlands has long been a desirable location for several reasons: proximity to S.F. International Airport and Highways 280 and 92; nearby Highlands Elementary School; neighborhood community center and pool; and its moderate climate. It is also home of two historic Eichler homes—the Eichler X-100 and the Life House.

"The [home] markets in other parts of the country have gone up as well," Sennett observed, a fact alluded to by Boyenga when trying to explain the dramatic rebound of home sales in 2021.

"I think people have realized their own mortality during [the pandemic], and realized maybe they need to live their life now," the leader of the Boyenga Team speculated. At the same time, he pointed out, "It's a great market to be selling real estate, [but] it's a nightmare to be buying it."

Fridays on the Homefront

  Fridays on the Homefront
Two historic Eichler homes found in the Highlands: the Eichler X-100 (top), the Life House (above - here with Joe Eichler from late 1950s). Photo: Sabrina Huang (top)

"Most of the Eichlers that have been selling, they're [looking at] between five and ten offers," Boyenga said, concurring with Sennett's assertion that offers with contingencies are just dismissed: "You have to have the best price and the best terms."

Both realtors peg recent home prices at generally closer to 120 percent of the asking prices in their regions, with Sennett suggesting, "It's hard for the appraisers to keep up!"

"Every time we've set the bar, it seems like two months later, the bar is raised again," Sennett said, describing a steady, rarely interrupted climb in Eichler prices over the past decade.

Striving for due diligence, the happy realtor added, "Now, is it going to continue? Who knows."