Los Altos is one of the most exclusive cities in the U.S. for a myriad of reasons. The rather competitive housing market reflects this demand and desirability. Whether or not one should live in Los Altos is no question. Instead ask, should you have your luxury home custom-built or purchased with the intention of a full home renovation? Read on to learn more about Los Altos and the pros and cons of building your custom luxury home in this exclusive suburb of Silicon Valley.
LIVING IN LOS ALTOS
The high desirability of living in Los Altos can be attributed to several aspects. First is its proximity to Silicon Valley. While Los Altos is closely positioned to this bustling tech hub, it’s situated just far enough to feel quiet and peaceful. It’s for this reason that Los Altos is able to offer its residents a safe, suburban feel while having easy access to other nearby city centers.
In addition to enjoying safety and quiet, residents also enjoy what’s offered in downtown Los Altos. Restaurants, coffee shops, parks, and boutiques line the downtown streets. What’s more is that commercial properties are limited to the downtown area by local ordinance, allowing the residential areas to remain uninterrupted and tranquil by keeping commerce concentrated elsewhere.
Los Altos is also an ideal place for families, but not only for its safety. The public schools in Los Altos are of the highest-ranked in the state.
Among the residents in the city, only 19% rent while a large majority, 81%, own their homes. High ownership means less residential turnover. Those who own their homes in Los Altos are invested in the economic well-being of the city, are more likely to maintain its beauty, and generally, increase the quality of life in the city. Residents who own their homes are more likely to add intrinsic value to a community, making it a more desirable place to live.
PROS TO BUILDING A LUXURY CUSTOM HOME
Building a luxury custom home in Los Altos could be achieved through the complete teardown of an older home or through purchasing a lot and building from the ground up. Either way, the benefit of starting from scratch, so to speak, is having complete control over the layout of your home. The location and layout of each room in the house will be outfitted to suit your specific needs. Whether it’s a large, professional-grade kitchen with a double island or a master ensuite with separate dressing rooms and lavatories, you can dictate every amenity.
The Los Altos housing market is incredibly competitive compared to national averages. Homes spend an average of only seven days on the market and most homes sell for above list price. For these reasons, acquiring a home to renovate to your specifications may be quite difficult. On the other hand, purchasing land to build a new custom home offers a solution.
A final benefit to building a custom home as opposed to a full home renovation is cost predictability. During the renovation process, certain complications can arise that cause delays and scope creep. Insect damage to support beams, old wiring, and other unexpected and expensive obstacles are not always known before demolition. Building a new home, however, with an allowance set aside, you can feel more confident in the budget set between you, your builder, and your architect.
CONS TO BUILDING A LUXURY CUSTOM HOME
Although there is a higher chance of scope creep when renovating a home, building a custom home can typically be more expensive. This is especially true if you already live in Los Altos and are only looking to expand or update your home. If the structure is strong and most of the layout suits your needs, a renovation may be just enough to fulfill the updates you need to live more comfortably.
As mentioned before, building a new custom home in Los Altos would of course require either a full teardown of an existing home or acquiring land. The availability of land in Los Altos is sparse and without much to choose from, you may find yourself settling on a location. Although the housing market is competitive and there is little time to waste before putting in an offer on a home, you will likely find a location that’s more suitable for you.
Another con to building a new custom home in place of an older home is the possibility of losing some of those charming vintage elements that could be salvaged in a renovation project. Of course, reclaimed elements, like wood-framed windows, are often an option when designing a new custom home. However, there is an irreplaceable appeal of original vintage characteristics that newly constructed homes tend to lack.
BUILDING OR RENOVATING IN LOS ALTOS?
Whether you feel a fully custom home or a renovation will suit your needs, K.C. Customs, Incorporated is an experienced and highly skilled design-build firm that specializes in remodeling and building high-end luxury homes. We provide impeccable craftsmanship with attention to detail to deliver incredible quality, on time and within your budget. Contact K.C. Customs, Inc. to plan your luxury dream home in Los Altos.