New Homes in Silicon ValleyFrequently, people new to Silicon Valley and the San Jose area arrive expecting to find new homes like the ones they left behind. But in reality that’s just not the norm in this market!

Unless you are looking to purchase a condominium or a townhome, or are looking at areas with very long commutes, it can be challenging to find truly new homes for sale here.

Finding New Homes in Silicon Valley

For the most part, Silicon Valley had a post World War II housing boom that stretched primarily from the 50s into the 70s. By the 1980s, most open space in the Valley was gone.

new homes off Taft 2009

New construction 2009 near high voltage power lines

Today we do have a few new patches of homes “here and there”, but there aren’t many. Most of the best land was built up long ago, so many of the newest developments are in less desireable pockets such as property bordering freeways. In the case of new tracts, developments tend towards large, vertical homes on small lots, and mostly luxury homes, often featuring ADUs (in-law units or guest houses) to fulfil the state’s affordable housing requirements.

If you need new and you want more space, single story, or lower price consider areas that are a little farther out. Morgan Hill has a number of new home developments, as do other parts of South County.

In popular areas like Campbell, West San Jose, or Palo Alto, developer sometimes purchase and tear down individual, smaller 1950s or 60s homes on large lots to build significantly larger multi-million dollar luxury homes to sell for a premium. These come with a high price tag, and don’t always have the best resale value when compared with their smaller, less developed neighbors.

Condos and TownhomesSunnyvale New Homes 2020

It’s a little easier for buyers looking outside the single family home market. There have been a number of new condo developments in downtown San Jose, which has been seeing a great redevelopment. And townhome buyers will likewise find a number of newer communities with modern luxuries throughout the area.

Strategies and Alternatives for New Home Buyers

For the Silicon Valley new home buyer, I want to suggest a couple of strategies.

First, in addition to checking out whatever new homes are currently being built, consider homes that are younger than 20 years of age.  Many of them are still in great shape. Some have already been remodeled!

Another option is to look for the “fully remodeled” home. With the latter, you must be extra dilligent to make sure that the house has not just been gussied up to be be flipped, but is truly remodeled in areas you cannot see, such as the electrical and plumbing systems.

If you are interested in buying new and already working with a buyer’s agent, do speak with your agent before visiting a development. Many developers will not work with a buyers agent if the agent was not present at the first visit.

And if you do choose to buy new from the builder, do your research before getting into contract. Are there any locational concerns you should be aware of that could impact your lifestyle, or the home’s resale value? And is the builder reputable? A little research will go a long way, so take your time before taking the plunge!

Please also read:
Myths and Misconceptions about Buying a New (or Newer) Home

Some younger neighborhoods:
Introducing a Beautiful Willow Glen Neighborhood, “The Willows”
The Almaden Winery Neighborhood of San Jose
Possible new Robson Homes project near Belgatos Park
Los Gatos’ North 40 Development