New Construction Review: Sterling Park by Classic Communities, Palo Alto

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Sterling Park is another of the recent housing developments in Palo Alto, which also includes Altaire and Redwood Gate. Located in the Midtown neighborhood, the use of mixed housing and two on-site parks helps Sterling avoid the compact feeling of standard developments in Silicon Valley and lets its residents enjoy some extra space. Click through to find out more about the property.

Overview

Parallel to the 101 freeway and on the corner of West Bayshore Road and Loma Verde Avenue, 96 units compose the new Sterling Park development, which is slated to be completed early 2011.

The development is broken down by 28 detached single-family homes, 39 townhouses and 29 condominiums. Potential buyers should be aware, however, that all its single-family homes are sold out, and only one remaining three-bedroom and two remaining two-bedroom townhouses are available as of June 2010. That leaves the 29 one-and three-bedroom condominiums left, which will be released for sale this October.

The six and a half acre site accomplishes a neighborhood feel with wider streets, mixture of home types, focus on the two central parks, and a nose mitigation wall beside the 101 freeway to reduce the noise and view of passing traffic.

The Midtown neighborhood, which Sterling is located in, is known for its small-town feel and there is a variety of positive things to say about the nearby schools -- Palo Verde Elementary, Jane Lathrop Stanford and Henry Gunn High School.

For basic information, available floor plans, features and sales information about Sterling you can visit their web site.

If you are ready to visit the property for your first time, consider representation from a local Silicon Valley real estate agent who can provide information about local comparable properties and help in sales negotiations. The second half of an older post I did goes over these considerations.

Details and Pricing

The two remaining two-bedroom three-bathroom and one-car garage (floor plan 4) townhouses start just under $800,000. The last three-bedroom three-and-a-half bathroom and two-car garage (floor plan 5) townhouse is selling for under $900,000.

The upcoming 29 condominiums will start at approximately $600,000 when released late 2010. They will have either one or three levels, with a respective amount of bedrooms; and range from 1,050 square feet to 1,800 square feet.

In addition, all properties include either a one-or two-car garage. Street parking will be limited to the 39 visitor parking spots and reserved spots that are estimated to sell for $5,000 each.

Homeowner’s association fees will initially be $325 a month, but reduced to under $200 once all the homes sell out, which should occur upon the developments completion by mid 2011.

Highlights

Lots of space. Because Sterling is composed of single-family homes, townhouses and condominiums, two parks and a community recreation center, the scenery is more pleasant than the dense row housing we usually see in developments. Traffic shouldn’t be a problem on West Bayshore Road and most parking inconveniences have been reduced since every property has their own garage.

Affordable, luxurious, green. Prices starting at $600,000 for a condominium in Palo Alto are a strong draw for many first-time buyers. But Sterling also has luxury features such as gourmet kitchens with General Electric appliances and granite countertops, and large master suites. Standard green and energy-efficient features reduce utility bills and result in quieter homes.

A location in the Midtown neighborhood means Sterling is only one mile away from fulfilling basic shopping and restaurants needs at the Midtown shopping center, which includes Longs Drugs, Safeway, Starbucks and Mike’s Cafe. And only half a mile from Greer Park, Seale Park and the Palo Verde Elementary School.

Concerns

Beside two office buildings and the noisy 101 freeway. The developers did their best to mitigate both these issues by, first, focusing the real estate development inward and towards the parks. Second, noise levels have been reduced by a wall built along the freeway. Lastly, for condos located on Bayshore Road, the developers have taken extra measures to reduce the noise through sound insulation like double-pane windows.

Competition:

Two other currently competing real estate developments in Palo Alto are Altaire and Redwood Gate. Comparable properties at Altaire are about $100,000 higher and Redwood Gate is mostly detached homes starting above a million. So expect nicer overall building quality and features at those two developments, but both are located at crowded intersections. Redwood Gate has the advantage of being centrally located in Palo Alto, while nearby Altaire is at the boarder of Palo Alto and Mountain View.

Takeaway

Most buyers looking into Palo Alto already know about its strong real estate market and fantastic school district and API scores. But most are taken aback by the steep Silicon Valley real estate prices, and is why many developments in Palo Alto make it possible for new homebuyers to break into Palo Alto’s prestigious market.

Sterling Park reflects this demand and doesn’t skip on features that should enable the properties to hold their value in the coming years.

Feel free to contact us for more specific information and an opportunity to tour Sterling Park in-person, or just to find out more about our unique Silicon Valley real estate services.