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San Rafael, CA Real Estate News

By Kyle Frazier, Kyle Frazier , CRS & Marin CA Realtor
(Christie's Great Estates | Pacific Union International)
San Rafael Market Overview (Home Sales Report as of 3/1/07)San Rafael homes continue to sell at a good pace across the board, particularly in the under $700K range.  While many of these homes tend to be smaller and/or in poor condition, in less desirable neighborhoods, and/or located on a steep hill, etc., they provide the least expensive housing (especially for entry level Marin buyers) in Central and Southern Marin.    The bread and butter homes of San Rafael are priced between $700K and $900K and sell fast so long as they are nicely maintained, updated, and/or located in desirable neighborhoods.  Indeed, the percentage of those in escrow shot up during the past month-50% of these homes are in escrow indicating a seller's market.As with the rest of Marin, homes priced correctly may or...
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By Kyle Frazier, Kyle Frazier , CRS & Marin CA Realtor
(Christie's Great Estates | Pacific Union International)
The San Rafael market is fairly strong for this time of year (as of the writing of this report), especially in the under $700K range.  It is worth noting that these homes tend to be smaller and/or in poor condition, in less desirable neighborhoods, and/or located on a steep hill, etc.  The bread and butter homes of San Rafael are priced between $700K and $900,000-these often sell quickly if they are nicely maintained, updated, and/or located in desirable neighborhoods.  Those that are priced correctly may or may not get multiple offers-note: the winning bid (which is not always the highest bid) is likely to be at asking price or just above (unlike the frenzied market of several years ago when overbids were in the stratosphere).  Generally speaking, buyers are still in the driver's seat ...
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By Kyle Frazier, Kyle Frazier , CRS & Marin CA Realtor
(Christie's Great Estates | Pacific Union International)
The San Rafael market is fairly strong for this time of year (as of the writing of this report), especially in the under $700K range.  It is worth noting that these homes tend to be smaller and/or in poor condition, in less desirable neighborhoods, and/or located on a steep hill, etc.  The bread and butter homes of San Rafael are priced between $700K and $900,000-these often sell quickly if they are nicely maintained, updated, and/or located in desirable neighborhoods.  Currently, 25% of these homes are in escrow, reflecting a very balanced market.  Those that are priced correctly may or may not get multiple offers-note: the winning bid (which is not always the highest bid) is likely to be at asking price or just above (unlike the frenzied market of several years ago when overbids were ...
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By Kelley Eling, Realtor Extraordinaire
(Fathom Realty Group)
During the month of January 2007, 38 homes sold in San Rafael, after an average of 85 days on the market.  The average original list price was $899,392 with an average final selling price of $848,104.  Of the 38 homes that sold, 4 sold AT their original asking price and 5 sold OVER their original asking price.  Pretty impressive.As of February 5, 2007, 27% of the available listings in San Rafael are in escrow, which would indicate a Buyer's Market.  Contradictory to what the numbers indicate above.
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By Kyle Frazier, Kyle Frazier , CRS & Marin CA Realtor
(Christie's Great Estates | Pacific Union International)
San Rafael became Marin's first city in 1874. Franciscans founded Mission San Rafael Archangel at the foot of San Rafael Hill, the 20th of California's 21 missions in the early 1800's. A replica of the mission stands at St. Raphael's Church. More than 52,000 residents make their home in the county seat, the commercial, cultural and governmental center of Marin. Just 17 miles north of San Francisco and surrounded by wooded, grassy hillsides and the bay, about one-third of the city's 17 square miles is open space. East of the Marin County Civic Center, Frank Lloyd Wright's architectural enigma (pictured to the right), is China Camp State Park, a former shrimp fishing village that now offers recreational opportunities, as does the nearby McNear's Beach Park. But the heart of the city lies ...
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By Mitch Todd
(Coldwell Banker)
About Marin CountyPeople and Places:Marin County is home to over 253,000 people.   It ranks as the 25 most populous County in California.   Marin covers 520 square miles of the most exquisite land California and our nation has to offer.   Over 92% of the population (over the age of 20) are high school graduates.   Over 51% of the population have achieved a bachelor's degree.Housing:The median existing detached home price in Marin County exceeded $958,000 in December 2006.   The median housing price (including condominiums, town homes, mobile homes and houseboats) is under $900,000.   Nevertheless, only 1.0 months worth of unsold inventory remains available as of December 2006.   Housing vacancy rates are below 4%.   There are over 107,000 housing units in Marin County. Economics:Marin C...
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By Mitch Todd
(Coldwell Banker)
I read an article last week published by RISMEDIA regarding a recent poll by Green Builder(R) Media and Imre Communications.  The article suggested that U.S. homebuyers would be willing to pay a premium of between 11% and 25% for new homes built using 'green' practices.This made me think...Is it hypocritical to promote green practices at premium costs?   Should the housing industry charge more for providing healthy homes and promoting a healthy planet?   I thought no.BUT, does premiums on the prices of homes actually support the research and development required to bring green practices into the mainstream>   I think yes.Although I (and most consumers, I imagine) seek the most economical methods of supporting healthy and sustainable living, sometimes we must pay more for it.   And, that...
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By Mitch Todd
(Coldwell Banker)
I've been waiting to buy my first hybrid for a year or so now.   I keep thinking that Toyota will finally release their hybrid Sienna minivan...so I keep waiting.   But, at long last, I think I'm going to bite the bullet and buy the Hybrid 7-passenger Toyota Highlander (well, later this year).   So I began researching the tax credits available for the hybrid vehicles.   Now, I'm not buying the car for the tax credit - so this isn't actually going to change my decision, but I was surprised to find that the available tax credits are quickly diminishing.According to the IRS website: http://www.irs.gov/newsroom/article/0,,id=157557,00.html, here are the available tax credits as of today:Eligible VehiclesAs of Dec. 14, 2006, the Internal Revenue Service had acknowledged the manufacturers' ce...
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By Patricia Gross
(Marin Realty Group)
Ok, so I needed to retile my bathroom so I took myself off to  Tile and Stone in San Rafael in hopes of finding a quick and easy solution.  On being totaly overwhelmed on arrival with the vast array to choose from I was rescued by Katie, a lovely young woman who promtly took me to her favorite bathroom tile and I thought Great! problem solved.  It wasn't until I got it home and went YIKES! wrong color that I began to experience the joy of working with the people at Tile and Stone.  I am small potatoes compared to a lot of their clients I am sure but I was treated with such grace even when it took me forever to finally pick out what I needed.  I have to also congratulate Rober and Edwardo (Lalo) for their kindness and patients.  I will definitely recommend them to my  clients!  
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By Kelley Eling, Realtor Extraordinaire
(Fathom Realty Group)
Santa Venetia is a neighborhood in a North Eastern part of San Rafael, and home to the Marin County Civic Center.  As you come off highway 101, at the North San Pedro Road Exit, into Santa Venetia, the Civic Center is on your left and Santa Venetia Market is on your right (along with some bail bonds businesses and Bogie's Cafe).  If you head further down North San Pedro Road the Marin Jewish Community Center will be on your right.  This facility offers a health club, swimming pool, cafe, venues for events, community activities and more.  The neighborhood on the other side of the boulevard, Northbridge, also has a community swimming pool.Some of the neighborhoods boast waterfront homes, which border Las Gallinas Creek and Santa Venetia Marsh.  (There is even a tiny island.)  Many of the ...
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By Kyle Frazier, Kyle Frazier , CRS & Marin CA Realtor
(Christie's Great Estates | Pacific Union International)
Marinwood is northernmost neighborhood of San Rafael, California.  Good schools, low crime, reasonable prices (relative to Marin), and a friendly neighborhood feel are the prime attractors to Marinwood.  There are lots of nearby parks and open space for hiking, biking, etc., and lots of community involvement.  Homes in Marinwood generally are selling from the $700,000's to $900,000, with some flux on either side.  The commute from Marinwood to San Francisco is ok-likely to improve once the HWY 101 expansion project is completed in 2008.  Those who don't mind a little longer commute often consider Loma Verde in Novato, with lower home prices.    For moer information about Marinwood, please call me (Kyle Frazier of Frank Howard Allen Realtors) at (415) 350-9440 or visit my website.
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By Kyle Frazier, Kyle Frazier , CRS & Marin CA Realtor
(Christie's Great Estates | Pacific Union International)
Lucas Valley, which is an upscale area of San Rafael (in Marin County, California) sits between Terra Linda and Marinwood.  It is also home to George Lucas' Skywalker Ranch.  Homes in the area over the past six months have generally sold in the $800,000 to $1,000,000 range and up.  Great schools, low crime, proximity to open space, and a good commute all provide a strong incentive for families and retirees alike.  The commute to San Francisco is good and will be improved once work on HWY 101 is completed in 2008 (widening the highway to allow for a commute lane to run through Marin County).  If you would like more information about Lucas Valley in San Rafael, Marin County, please call me (Kyle Frazier) at (415) 350-9440 or visit my website.
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By Kyle Frazier, Kyle Frazier , CRS & Marin CA Realtor
(Christie's Great Estates | Pacific Union International)
Terra Linda is a lovely neighborhood of San Rafael, in Marin County, California.  It is located just north of downtown, the Civic Center, and the Northgate Mall, and just south of Lucas Valley and Marinwood.  It is characterized by good schools, low crime, and convenience.  Homes in Terra Linda range in price from the high $600,000 to $1,000,000.  It is a neighborhood in transition with lots of stalwart owner who have been there 40-50 years and lots of young families looking for a nice place to raise a family.  The commute to San Francisco is relatively good from Terra Linda (the freeway is currently being expanded to allow for a carpool lane on HWY 101all the way through Marin--to be completed in 2008).  If you have any further questions about Terra Linda and/or other communities in Ma...
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