What does curb appeal really mean anymore? Certainly it starts with “Oh wow” and solidified by unidenfied, subconsious details a potential buyer picks up on a property. Things like lawn manicuring, window framing, roof angle. None of these things are inherently ‘nice’ or even expensive yet they make almost all the difference in a market where everything is 3500 square feet with 4 bedrooms and 5 bathrooms. Home appraisers are supposed to be objective and formulaic in how they assign dollar values but humans by nature are not objective or formulaic. Put an appraiser in a stunning spanish villa with marble, teak and sconces everywhere – but make it smell like rotten produce – and you bet your value is going down the tubes.
All that in mind, the only thing you can’t change about a house are it’s physical location, so make that decision definitive and buy the cheapest piece of garbage you can get with the word ‘upgrade’ in mind. Don’t believe me? Look up the statistics of home values located within walking distance of a cinnabon and you will be floored by what you find. Buy the zip code, the local shops/bars/schools, and the proximity to freeways. Everything else is subject to change. People down in south county value their living based on extremely arbitrary details. For example, would you ever expect a single bridge to make or break the value of a community?
LAGUNA NIGUEL – A bridge that delivers a popular shortcut between Aliso Viejo and Laguna Niguel will remain open to one way traffic for at least the next 45 days despite an announcement last week that it could be shut.
Officials with the South Orange County Wastewater Authority, which possesses the AWMA Bridge, said March 10 that it would shut the bridge because of concerns about its stability.
The bridge joins Alicia Parkway in Laguna Niguel to the Laguna Niguel position centre of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Aliso and Wood Canyons Wilderness Park and Aliso Viejo’s Wood Canyon neighborhood (including Wood Canyon Elementary and Community Roots Academy).
SOCWA is looking to provide the bridge to the county along with $1 million to rebuild it. However, the Board of Supervisors chosen to not make a choice on the suggestion of the bureau, and closed door discussions on Wednesday didn’t afford a selection on bridge’s future.
In a last ditch effort to maintain the bridge open, the county and SOCWA agreed Friday to keep the bridge open until May 5 to enable property negotiations to continue. No date has been set for the next discussion meeting.
“SOCWA will continue to finance the security at the bridge to monitor the safe use,” said General Manager Betty Burnett. “However, that is not a long-term option, and when the Bridge Plan or another mutually satisfactory arrangement isn’t reached in the additional dialogue period, then the bridge will have to be closed.”
A 2010 SOCWA assessment discovered that the bridge was becoming less stable over time. In 2014, the county pegged the expense of replacing the bridge at $3.8 million.
Since March 2015, the bridge has been restricted to one-way traffic into Aliso Viejo, and bridge access has been limited by a SOCWA guard to one car at a time.
Pretty crazy how much home value is assigned to its surroundings isn’t it?
Fortunately for Laguna Niguel and Aliso Viejo new home buyers, the communities hold their value regardless of details like bridges and cinnamon roll bakeries. Take the In n Out from Auburn and you’re left with a wasteland. But Laguna Niguel without the tiny bridge is just slightly less desirable. I’m sure the residents can comfort themselves by looking around at the endless restaurants, art galleries, palm trees and rolling green hills.
Take a look at the two places mentioned above
Here are a couple more homes for sale in Laguna Niguel
This one is a great bargain and prime for a fixup and resale at 4 times the value
Happy home hunting and remember where real value originates: between the left and right ear. Buy the location, not the home.