Archive for the ‘San Rafael’ Category

1020 Las Ovejas Ave San Rafael, CA

May 25, 2008

Asking: $799,000

This is another one found on Craigslist, originally found during a search on April 3. This is a nicely updated mid-century modern house just north of San Francisco. 3 bedrooms, 2 baths.

I am really loving living in a city again – it’s been years since I lived in Beacon Hill in Boston, and even more since I lived in the East Village in NYC. Far too long; I forgot just how fun it could be. But, the trade-offs are less living space, smaller outdoor space if any at all, and you have to swallow a much higher price per square foot. And there’s the fact that most city public schools aren’t so good. So sometimes I imagine moving back out to a nearby suburb. San Rafael seems pretty nice, according to Wikipedia.

Google maps says this house is just under 22 miles from the San Francisco city center. I used to live about 38 miles south of SF, and that commute was a bit too long, so I guess 16 miles less would be better. Still, it seems a bit far. When I was living in the Boston area, I went through the classic process of slowly moving outwards from the city center. First Beacon Hill in downtown Boston, then Somerville, and finally to Arlington. Arlington is only about 9 miles from downtown Boston and less than 6 from Cambridge. I highly recommend Arlington as somewhere where you can get the real estate you’re looking for in the Boston area while still being very close to the city.

Anyway, let’s get back to this place in Northern Cali.


The totally unique fence is pretty bold.

The kitchen and bathrooms have both been updated really nicely. One bathroom is especially nice, a mix of vintage and modern just like I like things.


The totally unique fence might be a bit too bold.

The manicured lawn kind of creeps me out. Way too gated-community-suburban. And it is a bit small – compare this yard to 48 Whitney’s, which is in the city. Much larger, wild, and ‘European classy’ than this.

The house sort of reminds me of my grandparent’s house in Ridgecrest, CA (aka the middle of nowhere). My grandparents were amazing people and I love them, but their house always gave me a bit of the creeps. 50’s style, single story ranches always do this to me. Especially when rooms have wall-to-wall carpet. At least the ones in this house aren’t shag.

At 1500 square feet, it is sort of on the small side for a house that is not in the city.

All in all, I think the cons outweigh the pros, but it is still a cool mid-c modern, near SF, for under a million.

View the listing