Almaden Valley Turkey Run

Turkey run 2017Thanksgiving has arrived, and with it, Almaden Valley’s most exciting annual running event – the Almaden Valley Turkey Run!

Come rain, come shine, the Run Turkey Run 5K/10K, organized by the Bret Harte Middle School Booster Club, has been a huge draw over the past years. This year the popularity of the event continues to be on the rise, with hundreds of Almaden residents expected to gather at Leland High School early on Thanksgiving morning.

The 10K run begins at 8:30 am and the 5K at 8:40 am on Thursday, November 23, 2017. For those planning to run at this event, pre-packet pick-up is on Wednesday, November 22, from 5:30 to 8:00 pm at the Bret Harte Middle School. On race day, spot entries and packet pick-up starts at 7:00 am. The race begins and ends at Leland High, and goes through trails along the Los Alamitos Creek trail. Whether or not you are running, don’t miss the fun. Join in to run or to cheer your friends and neighbors.

Happy Thanksgiving, and enjoy the holiday with your friends and families!

For more information, visit: https://runsignup.com/Race/CA/SanJose/AVRTR

September 2017 Almaden Valley Real Estate Market Update

Data for September 2017 Almaden Valley Real Estate Market indicates that we are well into the annual holiday cooling cycle. The number of single family homes offered for sale, under contract, and sold have all dropped from August to September, which is quite normal for this time of year. When we compare last month to the same time last year, we see a rather dramatic difference in these categories. For last month, we saw 23 single family homes for sale, 20 under contract, and 25 sold. In September 2016, these numbers were 44, 27 and 35 respectively. This disparity is quite likely due to the fact that inventory in 2017 has barely met demand. In fact, when we look at the average price per square foot, the $628 we saw this past month is significantly higher than the $575 we saw September 2016, which is a pretty clear indication that buyer activity has been strong.

The price per square foot did drop from August’s high of $667, but we anticipate pricing to cool this time of year as well. Generally speaking, the holidays are usually a good time to buy, as many buyers drop out of the market until the new year, prices drop, and sellers can become more eager to make a sale before the end of the year. This year, though, it seems like buyers may not see quite the decrease in competition that they usually experience. Good deals can still be had, but data indicates that buyer interest is still keen despite the upcoming holidays.

If you’d like more information about current market trends or are thinking about buying or selling a home in the Almaden Valley, give me a call!

September 2017 Almaden Valley Real Estate Market

How Does Your Garden Grow?

garden growHow Does Your Garden Grow?

Imagine yourself in a bountiful spring garden surrounded by tulips, hyacinths, daffodils, crocuses and beautiful blossoms in a riot of colors and hues. But how do you bring this spring wonderland to your own front yard and backyard? The answer is, by starting now.

For many of us, gardening projects end in the summer. Yet, fall planting is crucial to a good harvest in spring, be it flowers or vegetables. Here’s how to go about creating a beautiful spring garden.

Picking bulbs for spring blossoms: Right now, garden stores and nurseries are stocked up on bulbs and seeds for planting. Tulips, hyacinths, crocuses, daffodils, irises are some varieties which are sure to give you a blooming garden come spring.

Spring veggie patch: For a vegetable harvest in spring, choose vegetables which can withstand the winter chill and frost. Carrots, cabbages, turnips, broccoli, celery, parsnips, radishes, kale, and brussels sprouts are among the varieties which are most hardy.

Planting time: Plant the bulbs after summer but before the ground gets frosty. October is usually a good time for fall planting, but here in the Bay area, it is safe to plant till early November.

Where to plant: Choose an area in your yard which is sunny and has good drainage. Prepare the soil with compost and fertilize after planting the bulbs.

Mulch: Be sure to spread a layer of mulch. This keeps keep the moisture in and prevents frost from settling on the bulbs in the winter.

For more information, visit https://www.almanac.com/gardening.
For hardiness zones, check out this excellent resource on fall planting of bulbs: https://www.almanac.com/sites/default/files/d6/fall_planted_bulbs.jpg

Mt. Umunhum Opens to the Public

Mt. UmunhumThe long wait is finally over! The summit of Mt. Umunhum is now open to the public. With its landmark cube tower visible to the Almaden Valley and all over the South Bay, the reopening of this summit after 37 years has been a much anticipated even.

At an altitude of 3,486 feet, Mt. Umunhum is located in the Santa Cruz Mountains within the Sierra Azul Open Preserve. In recent years, it attracted a lot of attention from conservationists and nature enthusiasts, especially for its military contribution as an early warning radar station during the cold war years.

The summit offers stunning views of the peninsula extending to Monterey Bay, and at times even the Sierra Nevada range. The area surrounding the peak has new trails leading up to the summit, notably the 4-mile Mt. Umunhum trail, starting from the Bald Mountain parking lot.

The facilities at the top include a parking lot for about 54 cars, a restroom, a summit shelter, a viewpoint, a trailhead shelter and picnic tables.

Mt. Umunhum is definitely a must visit. Almaden residents now have an accessible peak comparable to Mt. Diablo and Mt. Hamilton. For more information, visit: https://www.openspace.org/mount-umunhum

Almaden Valley Art and Wine Festival 2017

Almaden Valley Art and Wine Festival 2017It’s the end of summer, and the grand event that Almaden residents await is finally here… The Almaden Valley Art and Wine Festival 2017!

On September 17, 2017, from 10:00 am to 6:00 pm, Almaden Lake Park will be decked out and playing host to festivities featuring a wide variety of arts and crafts from local artists. To complement these festivities, you can savor wine and spirits from seven local wineries and breweries.

The festival, now in its 41st year, also brings to you live music, entertainment, and fun-filled activities for the entire family. There are over 80 vendor booths and a fun zone to keep kids occupied. Admission is free and all proceeds are donated to charity.

So, mark your calendars for the Almaden Valley Art and Wine Festival. It’s an event not to be missed!

July 2017 Almaden Valley Real Estate Market Update

July 2017 Almaden Valley real estate market update… July figures of the Almaden Valley real estate market are in, and if historic figures are any indication we should have reached the low point of the annual summer doldrums. We would not be surprised to see a slight autumn rally and then the holiday season slow-down that happens every year.

There is one anomaly this year, and that is the number of single family homes offered on the market on any given month has been lower than the number of sold homes for most of the year. There are many possible reasons for this. One is that many homes are not listed on the MLS until they are sold. In other words, many Realtors are getting homes sold before they can put them on the MLS. Generally speaking, this type of sale  indicates a strong demand for homes. The data from last month would seem to bear this out. When we look at the number of single family homes on the market in July 2017 compared to last year, we see an over 64% lower number of homes this year yet the number of homes that sold are down only a bit less than 6%. Inventory is at some of the lowest rates that we’ve seen in years.

In addition, the price per square foot increased a rather hefty 9.4% from June 2017 and at $627/sqft is among the highest rate we’ve seen.

Overall, it would appear that the Almaden Valley single family market is favoring sellers. Would you like to know the value of your home? Call me for comps, or do it yourself with my home valuation tool ChalkBug.com!

July 2017 Almaden Valley real estate market

Almaden Community Center Fall 2017 Catalog

Almaden Community Center Fall 2017The Almaden Community Center Fall 2017 Catalog lists a lot of new and exciting activities lined up this fall. The activity guide covers classes, camps and activities from September 2017 to December 2017.

The highlights include a host of new classes, special events like the Harvest Festival and Halloween Party, and camps like the Fall Break Day Camp. Here’s a summary of what you will find…

New Classes:

  • Elementary Funtoons!
  • Pastel Drawing – Even More Magnificent Masters
  • Apprentice Mechanical Engineering: Master Machines
  • Electronic Game Design – Platform Games
  • Girl powered engineering using Lego
  • Junior Mechanical Engineering – Widgets and Gadgets
  • Junior Software Engineering using Scratch – Space P
  • Little Sports Medicine
  • Little Veterinarian School
  • Beginner Fencing

Special Events:

  • 10th Annual Harvest Festival and Holiday Boutique – 10/21/2017, 11:00 am to 4:00 pm
  • Halloween Party – 10/26/2017, 4:00 pm to 5:30 pm
  • Breakfast with Santa – 12/9/2017, 9:30 am to 12:00 pm
  • North Pole Party – 12/14/2017, 4:00 p, to 5:30 pm

Camps:

  • Fall Break Day Camp – 10/2/2017 – 10/6/2017, 8:00 am to 6:00 pm

For more information, visit: https://issuu.com/sjparksandrec/docs/almaden_community_center_05a57d80f34e11

June 2017 Almaden Valley Real Estate Market Update

June 2017 Almaden Valley real estate market update… As summer temperatures rise, the Almaden Valley single home real estate market cools a bit in a seasonal pattern we observe pretty much every year. Kids are out of school, summer vacations are planned and the sale and purchase of homes seems to be the farthest thing from many people’s minds. It would not surprise me in the least to see the market taking a summer nap until fall approaches.

Meantime, if you’ve been thinking about selling your home and wonder what it might be worth on the market these days, take a look at our proprietary easy-to-use home valuation tool ChalkBug and then give me a call!

June 2017 Almaden Valley Real Estate Market

Bats Over Calero at Calero County Park

Bats Over CaleroIf you enjoy observing creatures in their natural habitats, Bats Over Calero at Calero County Park may be just the thing for you. On this tour, the Calero County Park rangers will be taking you on a guided van ride to Bat Inn, deep in the heart of the park.

The Calero County Park is a regional park with a variety of recreation areas and activities. The park primarily includes the Calero County reservoir, which offers a boat launch ramp and host of water activities during the summer, and the “back country” which includes a variety of plant and wildlife habitats.

At the Bat Inn, during the twilight hours, you can view thousands of bats as they emerge from the cave after sleeping through the day. Before the tour, there will be a presentation on the life and habitats of bats. Bring a flashlight, a folding chair or a mat and bug repellent. Dress in long pants and sturdy shoes. Please note that flash photography is not allowed on this tour. The tour cost is $15 per person. Making prior reservations for this tour is recommended. Call 408-535-4070.

When: July 13th, 2017 – 6:00 p.m. to 9:30 p.m.
Where: Calero County Park – 23205 McKean Rd San Jose, CA 95120

For more information visit: https://www.sccgov.org/sites/parks/parkfinder/Pages/Calero.aspx

4th of July 2017 in Almaden Valley

4th of July 2017 in Almaden Valley is right around the corner, and Almaden certainly celebrates in style! Here are the highlights of some exciting events happening in Almaden this Independence Day.

4th of July 2017 in Almaden ValleyMontevideo Neighborhood Parade and Run/Walk

The Montevideo neighborhood of Almaden Valley celebrates the 4th of July with its unique annual float parade, run/walk, and barbecue and pool party at the Montevideo Cabana Club. The festivities open at 8:00 am with the 4-on-the-4th Run/Walk (participation fee – $5).

The parade begins at 11:00 am and the theme this year is “School Memories”. It starts and ends at the Montevideo Improvement Association (MIA) Clubhouse at the corner of Camden Avenue and Monteval Lane, and will pass through the following streets: Camden Avenue, Puerto Vallarta Drive, Vera Cruz Drive, Monteverde Drive and Montellano Drive.

The Fourth of July Parade within Montevideo is one of the most vibrant neighborhood celebrations in the South Bay. In addition to the public parade and run/walk, the Montevideo Cabana Club will also host a private barbecue and pool party for its members and guests.

For more details, visit: http://blog.miahomeowners.com.

4th of July Fireworks at the Almaden Lake Park

The Almaden Lake Park will come alive again this 4th of July 2017 with its spectacular annual fireworks display. Thousands of Almaden residents throng to this beautiful lake to see this dazzling show.

The event begins at 3:00 pm with entertainment by the radio station KRTY, local band Snarky Cats, and magician Pete E Magic. Activities for children include various arts and crafts, a fireworks safety demo, and writing a letter to a soldier. There are food trucks and booths by various local eateries.

The fireworks show kicks off after dusk, at about 9:00 pm. The event is free to all. A couple of tips: Come early to grab a spot, and carpool with neighbors to avoid parking hassles. Alcohol, pets, barbecues and personal fireworks are not allowed.

For more information, visit the sponsor website: http://www.krty.com/2017/06/27/almaden-lake-park-4th-of-july.