Very small Silicon Valley bungalow going for $2.6 million

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There was a time when we were all talking about decentralizing the workplace, right? Where working from home in disparate locations would remove these effects on local economies and make family life easier?

I know it’s easier to collaborate and do business in person but I’d think the ability to have a more diverse pool of talent at a lower (yet livable) pay scale might be more tempting at some point.

I wonder at what point a tech diaspora happens?


Wow! At $2886.29 USD per square foot, this definitely breaks the previous record:

At least for now, I think bus drivers need to be physically present to do their job.


Well, for the budget-minded house hunter, there’s always this slightly smaller bungalow for just $1.7M.

C’mon, you can’t talk about this per square foot of house, it’s clearly a tear down price, that’s the cost for the land. Land has become far away the limiting factor in high housing cost areas. People in my gentrifying city were shocked at the recent revaluation which bumped the land portion of the assessments from around 1/5 to 3/5 of the assessed value.


A Trumpian Wet Dream.

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The funny thing about our current system is that the people who most need to be present to do their jobs, people like retail workers, bus drivers, and firefighters, are being priced out by people who least need to be present, software developers.


*urge to reference Henry George rising*

Seriously, this is why we need a land value tax as to kick the speculators in their sensitive parts. This kind of thing makes it impossible to have people who are at the lower end of the wage spectrum to live where the demand for their work is (janitors, maids, landscapers, fast-food workers, etc). It just prices them out of even being in the same city from what I’ve heard.


Exactly! And if they dispersed a lowering tide would save many of those who are drowning financially.

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As someone who has moved across the country several times for work now, I don’t understand why people tolerate the Bay Area anymore and don’t find employment that they CAN make $14/hr less and improve their standard of living by being somewhere entirely else.

At some point equilibrium will take over, we’ll be paying janitorial staff $35/hr in the Bay Area and it’ll all blow up in everyone’s faces when formerly low paying jobs are also six-figure salaries just to get people to show up who want to afford the area.

It doesn’t change if people stick around in poverty and enable companies to pay other people exorbitant wages at their expense. Yes, moving is tough. Living like shit feels tougher to me though and I’d sure rather make a run for a cheaper state that’s not in its own messed up income universe and let San Francisco and the surrounding area rot into the ocean.


Yeah, you tell all those dumb poor people how to solve all their problems! Keep yanking those bootstraps, losers.

FWIW, I’ve lived much like you; several states, several jobs. I’m currently in the Bay Area & yes, when I decide I want to buy a house I will be moving somewhere else. It’s easy for me though, I have some savings, I have no roots in the community & do not have family obligations keeping me here. Eventually when my dear old mom needs to live near me, I’ll ostensibly be able to foot the bill to move her as well.

For many people, it’s not so easy. Don’t be blinded by your own privilege.


In Silicon Valley tech companies it happens by design. They hire young people in their 20s for profit-centre jobs at a high enough wage so that they can barely afford the exorbitant rents on the tiny apartments they spend so little time in. Then they run them hard on eternal crunch time. A few of them make it to management and are paid enough to settle down with a family and buy a palace like this one, some stick it out past age 32 as bitter aging neckbeards, but most of them burn out and churn out of the Valley once they realise the game is rigged against them. They either find tech jobs in more affordable areas or find other ways to leverage their experience into a better paying local job.

If you’re talking about remote work, the only kind that’s really acceptable in the tech industry is gig economy stuff. Most of the coding work in that category goes overseas. Full-time employees of venture-funded and public tech companies are in-house (IBM famously recently pulled a lot of remote workers back into the cube farms and open plans).

Teachers and caregivers, too. Which is to say, a lot of these jobs are done by people you really don’t want exhausted from having to make a 4-hour commute to and from work every day.

It also encourages development of high-density housing. What kind of housing is built (e.g. luxury condos vs. affordable rentals) is a separate issue, of course.


I find that highly unlikely. Do you think that someone who has paid out $2.6 mm for a home is going to let it go for $250 k to support a family of four? Or that the land that was bought under a 10-family apartment complex that was subsequently razed to make way for a CEO’s concrete and glass Architectural Digest masturbation fantasy will be returned to affordable housing? Maybe in some post-crash hell scape that sees people converting private cinemas and panic rooms into studio apartments, but not in the Bay Area. At least not in a way that won’t leave serious, permanent scars for generations.

The answer, of course, is Amazon/Whole Foods delivery drones that also clean your home and landscape your priceless, yet child-free lawn.


yeah, I’ve sold literally all of my possessions to move elsewhere several times. There’s no privilege involved. You can be broke as hell anywhere just as easily as the Bay Area. Your stuff is just stuff. There is nothing magical about suffering for someone else’s well being. It’s even easier if you’re not looking for a skilled position because everywhere needs the same basic infrastructure.

They need bus drivers in Topeka just as much as San Jose. Why stay in San Jose if you’re a bus driver? Give me a legit reason, I’d love to hear it!

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I wonder if maybe you’ve been fooled by sensationalistic articles on the net. My wife and I own a nice, 3-bedroom townhouse, which we bought 4 years ago, in an East Bay city. Its value has increased about $100k since we bought it, but we could still afford it with our combined $80k income. Before that, we each owned condos in other Bay Area cities. I commuted to SF on BART for 5 years, and while it took 2.5 hours a day total, it was doable-certainly better than paying $2 million for a home. Now we both have jobs fairly close to home, and we love the Bay Area. You don’t have to work in SF to live here.


Unless your employer is paying the costs, moving is expensive. Other complicating factors: kids in school, a partner with a local job, family in the area (esp. elderly or ailing ones), a job that doesn’t allow one to build up the cash reserve needed for a move, a career that’s in less demand in places that aren’t prosperous big cities, being of a sexual orientation or race or religion or disability that might not be tolerated in less cosmopolitan places that also tend to have a lower cost of living.

For most single people under age 30 a one-time move out of the Bay Area might be do-able. The older one gets and the more ties one forms, the less one is willing to sell everything and hit the road again.


$2.6 million asking price for this 897-foot bungalow in Palo Alto?

In January my Dear Wife and I bought [our retirement home] a 1100 square foot bungalow in Joshua Tree for $136K with an half acre of land. The two California towns are 430 miles apart, I’m really feeling that we did pretty good with our deal.


I’d give you a reason, but they’ve already been given in the article as well as several other reasons in the comments. You are just choosing to dismiss them / not hear them.

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Instead, let’s put all our chips on autonomous vehicles, because what we need is self-driving cars with one occupant stuck in the same old traffic jams in rush hour.

We should be building VR, better connections, and better apps for remote work.

Granted, California has an awesome climate, beautiful scenery, but that’s not all in Palo Alto…