The little 7o-year-old house at 353 Carmelita Drive is about as unspectacular as American real estate gets: two bedrooms, one and a half baths, and a modest 960 square feet. Elsewhere in the country (or at least the state) you could probably snatch it up for around a quarter million, tops: but in Google's back yard, it's four times that.
There's a redone kitchen and some nice bamboo floors, but really, what you're paying here is the privilege of living in Mountain View, which like many Silicon Valley regions, has seen its property values explode alongside stock prices and IPOs.
A value estimate from the real estate site Zillow paints it pretty clearly: everything is getting more expensive, including this tiny dull house.
There are more new money millionaires ride-sharing across California than ever before. They pay cash. They move fast. They might dig the modesty of quiet residential plot. They might want Zuckerberg-chic, not ostentation. This isn't a problem if you're a well-to-do software engineer, but for the rest of humanity, you're suddenly priced out—because when everyone's making money changing the world, even "cottages" are for millionaires. Just wait for an app to find the rest of California an affordable home, I guess.