Bayport Alameda Update

9am on a Saturday morning is not a time I normally see much of, but today I was outside the sales office at Bayport Alameda along with many other prospective house buyers for the first lottery for houses in the new housing community on Alameda.

Not the most organised event I’ve ever been to (I could have made several suggestions for ways to get the whole operating proceeding much, much more efficiently), but by 10am they had all the numbers in plastic boxes ready for the drawings (one for the next phase of Cove houses, and one for Harbor houses).

The drawings were relatively quick, and the house I was interested in was chosen by the first person drawn, so no new house today. The prices also took a fairly significant jump in price (about 5%) from the previous phase.

There are a number of things about the way that Warmington Homes, the builder, are running this that puzzle me:

  1. Why have these ridiculous lotteries when you have 485 houses to sell? The only reason I can see is that it lets them create artificial demand and pump the prices up.
  2. Why are they selecting the options, and it seems from today’s sale, even some of the upgrades, rather than letting the new home buyer select them – the houses are not even started yet, so letting the buyer decide shouldn’t have any impact on the schedules.
  3. How come some of the houses in the lots being sold today were pre-sold? And how can I get one of those?
  4. Why are they not able to tell people what the options selected for each model being sold are before the day of the sale? For that matter, why not make the prices available too.
  5. Why do I have to keep turning up to the lotteries until I win the chance to buy a house? Surely, I could just put my name on a list along with the models and/or lots that interest me and they could do the whole thing without requiring me to be there?

Just some thoughts. I guess I will be there for the next one too though, so I might be seeing a lot more of 9am on a Saturday over the summer this year.

I have also put up a copy of the n (with some annotations for where the models are, and where today’s lots were). I will try to update it after each sale (assuming I go to them). Also, remember that the reason given for not having this plan as a take-away document in the sales office was that it might change – if I see it has become outdated (or somebody lets me know), then I will try to get a new photo and update it, but no promises there.

Nov 6, 2004 Update: I have added a category for Bayport posts to the blog, moved all the existing posts to this new category and also added a new entry with some info about today, and some graphs of the prices over time for the various plans.

12 thoughts on “Bayport Alameda Update

  1. Couldn’t agree with you more!

    #1 yes, it is ridiculous to have these bizarre lotteries.

    #2 I have the same questions and have repeatedly asked the sales office to clarify how chosing my own options will delay the schedule, when the house isn’t even built yet.

    #3 the builder has the option of pre-selling the lots (to his cronies, I guess). It says so in the contract

    #4 They fixed this finally. If you call the day before the lottery, the prices are available and you can also get them to fax the list of “chosen options” for each house.

    #5 “have to be present to win”, I guess to weed out the casually interested (after all, only the diehards would show up @ 9AM on a Saturday)

    Did you “win” a house yet? There’s another drawing tomorrow (8/21) for phase 10 …


  2. We purchased a home in phase 5 (which was released before opening day for the models. We were
    told that during each phase, a very limited number of homes can be pre-sold to Warmington
    employees at the offering price. We were able to select all of our home options on our house
    so I think you are referring to the fact that the builder has some included options as part
    of the purchase price. Hope this information is helpful & hope you get a house! And thanks for
    posting a copy of the master plan!

  3. Were you there this past Saturday (10/2)? The houses are going fast … and a very favorable writeup in the Chronicle has made Bayport even more popular 🙂

  4. Yes, I was there on Saturday and the turnout was the largest I have seen so far (they also had coffee and pastries for those in line outside the door – the one day I had time to stop at Starbucks first!). The two plan 5 units went straight away (highest priced first), the plan 3 and 4 took longer which was even worse for us since plan 4 is the one we like in the Harbor range. I guess we’ll be back there for the next one (a Cove release with only 5 units if I am reading the plan correctly), and I expect another large turnout for that one too. The prices were also up quite a lot this weekend compared to previous harbor releases (the lots were bigger I guess), though the Pointe prices still seemed to be very reasonable given the size of the houses.

    In addition to articles in the paper, there are billboards up all over the bay area, and they have been advertising in many of the new homes magazines etc.

  5. Hey John, I have enjoyed reading your comments and your commitment to showing up on Saturday’s.

    We got the plan 12 in the Point last weekend. I really hope you are able to get one in the next release. The houses are great and I believe a good investment.

  6. Re: Joe’s comment:

    We got the plan 12 in the Point last weekend. I really hope you are able to get one in the next release. The houses are great and I believe a good investment.

    Joe, the plan 12 was declared sold to a “friend of the builder” and was not entered in the
    drawing on Saturday. So there were only 3 houses in the Pointe that were open for the general
    public (2 in Plan 10 and another in Plan 11). So I presume you were this VIP friend of the
    builder? 🙂

    btw, did you folks see the dude who opted to forego his chance when his number was picked
    during the draw for the Harbor and a few moments later, his number was picked again (for the
    Pointe)? This time he accepted. Some guys have all the luck.

  7. Alamedan writes: aren’t u guys afraid of the housing bubble (quote/unquote)?

    It is certainly something we’ve talked about, but we were worried it about a few years back and now look where the prices are compared to then. If it carries on going up then we won’t be able to afford anything 🙁

  8. Re: the “bubble”, I’ve heard conflicting reports, so it is hard to say with any degree of certainty.

    November will be a busy month at Bayport, with the lottery to be held on 6th, 13th and 20th for phases 14, 15 and 16. There will no more releases after this until the new year. Good luck to all of us.

    John, thanks for hosting this blog and for the master plan copy.


  9. Hey, I noticed on earthquake risk maps this area is at a 73% risk of liquefaction. Does anyone know if they have taken steps in building to protect versus this. OR.. does anyone know of what kind of damage occurred in this same area during Loma Prieta (7.1 Richter)?

    Great site by the way.

  10. The Bayport homes not worth the money for the neighborhood. They are similar homes (less than 8 years old) in Alameda that are better priced! Look at the community before buying.

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