November 6, 2006 at 1:17 PM #7848
Driving through there this weekend, noticed just how weird parts of the 4S Ranch community feel. Everyone still had their fake spiderwebs up from Halloween, too. Fake spiderwebs on fake “quality”, if you ask me. The place just looks and feels “cheap” too.
And what is it with the stone covered front window, “hobbit” house look that is so common in there?
Last bit of my rant…why would people pay 700K, 800K, or more to live so close to each other on zero lots? These homes are disgusting examples of what went wrong.November 6, 2006 at 1:26 PM #39311blahblahblahParticipant
I don’t get the “Curry” part of your post, what does that mean? The homes are definitely cookie cutter, that’s for sure. They were some of the only entry-level homes available in that part of town for a while, so I’m sure a lot of first time buyers stretched to get into them. That might explain some of the “delayed” maintenance you see. But hey, it’s only a week after halloween. When I was growing up, if we got the Christmas decorations down before Valentine’s Day, we were doing good!November 6, 2006 at 1:27 PM #39312anParticipant
Completely agree with you. Went and check out the models and they all are ugly. Seems like they’re trying to squeeze as much sq-ft in the lot available. That’s why they all look like a box. Lot that used to hold only 1000-2000sq-ft house now hold 3000-4000 sq-ft. It’s ridiculous.November 6, 2006 at 1:28 PM #39313DoofratParticipant
One of my wife’s co-workers lives in one of these communities (could even be 4s) and they got a box with Halloween decorations to put up and were told to encourage their neighbors to put their box of decorations up as well. Probably same thing happened there, everybody putting up the same box of decorations.November 6, 2006 at 1:50 PM #39316lindismithParticipant
The Curry part threw me too!
I googled it, and found that’s the name of the public campground in Yosemite – with the bell tents, and the chalets – sort of Disneyland-meets-Thomas-Kinkaid-look. (read schlock.)November 6, 2006 at 2:00 PM #39318
It felt to me like these people are living in million-dollar tents, occupying very small and very public campsites. That’s what made me think of the public campsites (Curry) in Yosemite National Park.
Sorry for the confusion.November 6, 2006 at 2:08 PM #39319powaysellerParticipant
The PUSD Transportation Dept employee told me that he has lots of 4S Ranch students on payment plans. The parents are telling him they are stretching to make their payments, and have ARMs. They’ve got 400 kids on payment plans, up from 100 just a few years ago. I think 4S Ranch was one of the few subdivisions in the PUSD. We didn’t get any subdivisions in Poway, due to their open land policies and their low growth plan, so 4S Ranch was the only area here that people stretched into.
I was inside a few homes when I looked at rentals, and the lots are very close together. In one home, I felt like in a fishbowl in the backyard, because there is 0 privacy. The 2-story homes back to each other and look down on each other, so your neighbor can see you from his bedroom window, just a couple feet away. One 2300 sq ft home had so many small rooms, it felt like one of those kids’ playhouses. I kept shaking my head and wondering who would spend so much money on a house on a tiny lot.
Those tiny lots are disgusting. I like high density living in condos or townhomes, but a SFH deserves to have some decent space around it. I have more privacy in my townhome backyard, which is a row of attache homes adjacent to each other and with open space behind, than I would have had in any of the three 4S Ranch rentals.
I just don’t understand why people buy those big houses on those tiny lots. Do they just settle for it, or do they like not having the yard work? It boggles the mind…November 6, 2006 at 2:11 PM #39320
Saw a lot of “scarecrows” er, “For Sale” signs in there as decorations too. Those “decorations” probably won’t be coming down until well after Valentine’s Day 😉
It’s a pretty spooky sight…November 6, 2006 at 7:15 PM #39342PerryChaseParticipant
I don’t mind the density. But I hate the prices. I beleive that there should be a price density trade-off. The higher the density, the lower the price. I think that if Downtown condos were all in the 100k-150k range, we’d have a fun thriving hub with all sorts of employment and things to do.November 6, 2006 at 8:15 PM #39346capemanParticipant
Yeah but with that density it is tough to beat the candypersquarefootage they have there at Halloween. It’s a trick-or-treater’s heaven… and yes at 29 I did partake with the little one’s. The A.W.E.S.o.M-O costume worked well.November 6, 2006 at 8:25 PM #39347bubble_contagionParticipant
At least they have fake spider webs. In some near future they may have real spider webs.November 6, 2006 at 8:59 PM #39350Steve BeeboParticipant
I’ve heard that lots of homeowners in 4S Ranch are having to eat low-grade dog food for dinner.November 29, 2011 at 7:38 AM #733516svelteParticipant
I’ve never quite understood the appeal of 4S myself, kind of like I’ve never fully understood SEH. Both a bit claustrophobic to me.
Funny thing is we drove my son and his GF (from northern CA) through SEH last week and she almost went nuts with excitement in the town square area. Different strokes, I guess.November 30, 2011 at 11:02 AM #733610earlyretirementParticipant
I totally agree and posted a few posts earlier this year. We were never interested in 4S Ranch but we drove around and looked at some houses when we were in the due diligence stage during our home search.
We wanted to see for comparison purposes what they have to offer in 4S Ranch. I couldn’t believe how cheaply built some of the newer houses being built there were.
I just didn’t get it either that people would pay $700k to $800’s to live in 4S Ranch. Yes, I know the school district is great there but I just didn’t see the appeal of people paying those kind of prices for that quality of home.
There is a huge dividing line from the $700’s on up and it seems like many people in 4S Ranch are really stretching or stretched to live there.
We ended up buying in Santaluz. It was more expensive at around $1 million vs. 4S Ranch but the quality was so much better, low density, homes were gorgeous, lot and grounds meticulously maintained, etc. Also, I like the fact that the HOA is so strict. People get letters saying to take down your Halloween decorations. Some things are super picky like you can only paint your garage/house one color but we enjoy living in Santaluz.
At those kinds of prices, I’d bite the bullet and buy in a nicer area but I just think it comes down to people really stretching to buy at those prices to begin with and won’t get qualified to spend more.
The kick in the pants is that most of 4S Ranch still has Mello Roos taxes just like other nicer areas so it’s not like you are saving money there. You still have the MR taxes in 4S Ranch.
I will never understand the appeal of people spending $800’s to buy in 4S Ranch.
The high density, zero lot lines are not just limited to 4S Ranch however. When we were looking at houses, we looked at several in Carmel Valley and it was very bad there as well and much more expensive per sq. foot. Neighborhoods like Pacific Highlands Ranch in Carmel Valley had some beautiful homes but the density was horrible! Some houses you had 5 homes directly looking into your back yard. (3 behind and 2 side houses) all looking directly on your zero lot line back yard. I couldn’t understand people paying $1 million for those houses either. But at least there wasn’t Mello Roos in many of the CV neighborhoods like 4S Ranch.November 30, 2011 at 11:27 AM #733612ocrenterParticipant
4S and SEH is perfect for middle class families that put good schools on top of their list. $400-$600K range is what 4S/SEH homes should be at. Essentially, we are looking at folks that make around combined $125k range.
If you are in brackets over that, it isn’t your cup of tea.
The problem of course is the bubble pushed the prices beyond the $600k barrier even though the houses remained in that $400-$600k quality. Especially the north side where the houses are even more tightly packed in as the builders hurried to jam in homes as the bubble was ready to pop.
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