Thursday, June 28, 2012

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Open House Review: 8 Brena

Posted: 28 Jun 2012 05:00 AM PDT

It is rare to come across a six bedroom home under $1,000,000, but I found one today at 8 Brena.  While the house originally had four bedrooms and a bonus room, the bonus was converted into two additional bedrooms.  Having been in the original floor plan numerous times, I was excited to see how this one was changed.

The basics:

Asking Price: $949,900
Bedrooms: 6
Bathrooms: 4
Square Footage: 2,955
Lot Size: 5,000
$/Sq Ft: $321
Property Type: Single Family Home
Year Built: 1978
Community: Northwood, Woodside

HOA dues are $97 per month and there are no Mello Roos.

Upon entering, the living room is to the right and the dining room to the left.  Both are pretty standard for a late 70’s home.  They are nice rooms, but don’t really have anything remarkable about them.  The kitchen is through the dining room and has been nicely remodeled.  There are granite countertops, stainless steel appliances, updated cabinets and a newer tile floor.  While the kitchen doesn’t have a built-in island, the current owners have a free standing butcher block in the center of the kitchen to provide extra counter and storage space.  It makes a nice addition.  The kitchen also has a breakfast nook surrounded by windows that look out to the backyard.

The yard is fully hardscaped, but is a good size and has a gate out to the greenbelt.  The home is located just steps from the bridge that connects to the Hicks Canyon trail.

Also downstairs is a pretty family room with hardwood floors.  A bar area was converted to an office space, which is much more functional and modern.  Beyond the family room is a downstairs bedroom.  This one is on the smaller side and rather dark, as it only has one small window facing the house next door.  The closet doors have been removed and replaced with large, dark, heavy curtains.  There is a full bath across from the room, but it hasn’t been updated.

Upstairs there are five rooms.  One room currently doesn’t have a closet or doors to the hallway (curtains separate the room from the hall), but it could easily be converted back to a standard bedroom.  While there used to be a full bathroom off the hallway, it has been converted so it’s now inside one of the bedrooms.  While it’s nice to have another en suite bathroom, I like to have at least one bathroom accessible from the hallway.  Again, this bathroom has not been updated.  The room it’s attached to is good size with a ceiling fan and mirrored closet.

As I mentioned earlier, the bonus room was converted into two additional bedrooms with a Jack and Jill bathroom.  Both bedrooms are a good size, with mirrored closets, high ceilings, and a lofted storage space.  The connecting bathroom has two separate pedestal sinks and, while it’s newer than the other bathrooms in the house, it still seems old and in need of updating.

The last room upstairs is the master bedroom.  It has a fireplace and a gorgeous view of the greenbelt and Hicks Canyon trail.  It has two large mirrored closets, two sinks, and a separate tub and shower.  The bathroom has not been remodeled.

The carpets upstairs had many visible stains and dark spots, with the exception of the master bedroom, where the carpet was newer.   That, along with the older bathrooms, gives the house a bit of a tired feel.  While the kitchen and family room are both nicely redone, the other rooms don’t match up.  However, though it could be nicer, it certainly can be lived in and a family could move in today without making any of the changes. 

I don’t think it’s as nice inside as the other two homes of the same model that have recently sold (23 Alegria for $850,000 last month and 31 Abeto for $912,000 in early 2011).  The asking price of $949,900 is too high.  This home does have one more bathroom than the others, and two additional bedrooms instead of a bonus room, but it needs more work than the others, which both had fully remodeled bathrooms and newer floors and carpet throughout.  Overall, it’s a great floor plan and would be a wonderful home for a large family, but the price needs to come down so the extra money can be put into new carpet and remodeling all four bathrooms.  I’m very curious to see what this one sells for as compared to the other two.

Discuss below or on Talk Irvine.


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