In my last post, I had a comment challenge for my first responder to pick my next blog post subject. The winner suggested that I write about how my family & I ended up in San Carlos.
You may need a little more background to get the full story. I was born and raised in a beautiful suburb of Los Angeles, Palos Verdes. I stretched my southern California roots a few hours north to Cal Poly San Luis Obispo for college. Several of my college roommates were from the bay area and treated me to northern California visits to acquaint myself. I loved the bay area for its gorgeous environs, the magic of San Francisco and cute cities and towns that dot the peninsula and east bay. Another bay area magnet entered my life at Cal Poly, my now husband, who was raised in Woodside. While you don’t need our love story in this post, he is the reason why I ended up in the bay area, namely the peninsula.
I graduated from Cal Poly in December 1999 when the tech/start-up boom was in full force and jobs were easy but housing was not. With a job offer in Palo Alto and no place to live, I used my Cal Poly network to find a rental from a college friend’s family who owned a duplex in Menlo Park. An engagement ensued with a wedding in 2001 — yes, if you’ve done the math, we just celebrated our 15th wedding anniversary! And in the natural progression of newlyweds, we decided it was time to buy a house in 2002.
The tech boom was still hot which also meant so was the housing market…. we cast a large net like many new buyers do from San Mateo to Menlo Park. We wanted at least a 2 bedroom house in an area with good schools. We toured homes with our Realtor and visited Open Houses every weekend. And then we started writing offers… 7 of them to be exact. We were always in competition; every single house we wrote an offer on had multiple offers and sold for WAY over the asking price. This might sound familiar to some current buyers… It was frustrating to say the least and now that I am on the other side I can certainly empathize. With our frustration high, we decided to “take a break” from house hunting and wait for a bit. And then we were driving by a house in San Carlos that had an Open House sign. We couldn’t resist stopping and were instantly in love with the 1940’s charm of hardwood floors and coved ceilings and big back yard so we could finally get a puppy. It was a well-loved home with great bones and we wanted to make a run at it. Considering we were unsuccessful “experts” in writing offers, we wrote our 7th offer at our highest price yet and finally got the good news call (one of my favorite phone calls to make now that I’m a Realtor) that WE GOT THE HOUSE!
It’s interesting to reflect on the 7 offers and how each of those 6 other homes weren’t meant to be. The cute little house in San Carlos was meant to be. And now after a few houses and three kids, San Carlos is where my heart is and I’m so glad to be a resident of the City of Good Living! Every day I am grateful for my village and community in this special town. Watching the growth of San Carlos over the past 14 years has been inspiring — the sleepy little town has grown into a vibrant destination for people to settle perfectly halfway between San Jose and San Francisco cherishing the excellent public school system, charming downtown and ideal climate.