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Old 05-21-2020, 10:27 AM
 
Location: State of Transition
85,967 posts, read 79,159,832 times
Reputation: 88230

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Quote:
Originally Posted by davdaven View Post
Some cities are more permissive than others. There are empty lots you can build on here in Richmond, for example, if you are willing to spend the time it takes to meet all the permitting and financing requirements. There are two such projects currently underway near where I live. It is relatively easy to find a design/build or prefab firm that has a Bay Area portfolio (usually leaning towards the high end). In cities like Oakland, it might be easier to go the full gut job route instead. And at the other end of the spectrum are cities like SF, Berkeley, etc. where you will have to buy city staff flowers and tell them how much you love them to get anything done, only to get everything derailed by a nosy neighbor who doesn't like the shade of fuchsia you're using.
I'd thought of Richmond for the OP, too, but it seems too far away for commuting to SV. But maybe not, when the BART extension to San Jose is completed. When is that due to happen, anyway?
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Old 05-21-2020, 02:07 PM
 
Location: Richmond, CA
881 posts, read 704,843 times
Reputation: 1083
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ruth4Truth View Post
I'd thought of Richmond for the OP, too, but it seems too far away for commuting to SV. But maybe not, when the BART extension to San Jose is completed. When is that due to happen, anyway?
The BART extension to Berryessa (San Jose) opens on June 13. Trains will operate directly between Richmond and San Jose on the orange line. The Daly City-SF-San Jose green line will be available Monday-Saturday too. More details here: https://www.bart.gov/news/articles/2020/news20200519
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Old 05-22-2020, 03:45 AM
 
6 posts, read 1,619 times
Reputation: 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by ssmaster View Post
Yeah I’m going with this. In the Bay Area with modern building codes and design review people don’t build spec houses to save money. They build spec houses because they can’t find the house they want and they have MONEY to burn

Also will the Lot purchase and build be paid for with cash? Getting a bank to finance a construction loan for an inexperienced owner builder is going to be very difficult. Expect to have at least 30% down and significant cash reserves. If you default on a house the bank at least has a house. If you default on a build a bank may be stuck with a hole in the ground.
Yes, the cash reserves are there as well as expecting an above average down. Credit scores all very high and two salaries combining to 400k /yr. How hard is it to get a contractor's license in CA?
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Old 05-22-2020, 03:47 AM
 
6 posts, read 1,619 times
Reputation: 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by 04kL4nD View Post
Pretty much my thoughts exactly. Land here is so valuable that people will pay all cash for something that's literally sliding down a cliff. Does the OP realize how difficult it can be to even find a contractor willing to add something that wouldn't seem like a big deal anywhere else (additional bathroom, extended kitchen, etc)?

With that budget, the OP could look into parts of West/East Oakland, Hayward, Richmond, or Vallejo, but LMAO at Lamorinda
Is there a huge difference between Vallejo and Lamorinda?
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Old 05-22-2020, 10:22 AM
 
Location: Oakland, CA
5,250 posts, read 6,787,625 times
Reputation: 4863
In a word: YES.

If you haven't done so already, I would suggest visiting the Bay Area first and get a better lay of the land, because you're comparing one of the wealthiest/exclusive parts of the Bay Area to one that suffers from a pretty negative reputation due to crime/blight....

Google: Vallejo bankruptcy
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Old 05-22-2020, 11:51 AM
 
Location: State of Transition
85,967 posts, read 79,159,832 times
Reputation: 88230
Quote:
Originally Posted by thyrumps View Post
Is there a huge difference between Vallejo and Lamorinda?
OMG! You really do need to visit the area, and drive around, scoping out the different towns and neighborhoods. For one thing, OP (not that you expressed any interest in Vallejo anyway, but just for the record), it's across a bridge to the north from the rest of the East Bay. Really not convenient for an SV commute. And while we're at it, what part of SV was it, that you'll be commuting to? Could you clarify that for us? We've been assuming you mean San Jose.
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Old 05-22-2020, 05:34 PM
 
Location: Newark, CA
2,301 posts, read 5,123,096 times
Reputation: 3739
Quote:
Originally Posted by thyrumps View Post
Is there a huge difference between Vallejo and Lamorinda?

He really just asked this question???
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Old 05-22-2020, 07:11 PM
 
Location: Portland
93 posts, read 26,768 times
Reputation: 99
I’ve never really met anyone coming in here buying a house to build or revamp given the prohibitive costs, permits, time, etc. it wouldn t be worth the trouble unless you are willing to wait long periods of time for permit approvals and lay down major $$$ for virtually everything unless you are going to do it yourself. Why bother just buy a new house if you have that much money as you say you have.
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