Building a Better Bay Area: Median home price in Fremont surpasses $1 million

FREMONT, Calif. (KGO) -- 7 On Your Side's Michael Finney met up with Fremont real estate agent Bryan Van Heusen as he was showing clients one of his listings. The home had 3,300 square feet, was in a nice area, modern and clean. It was not cheap.

The prices in Fremont may surprise you.

BUILDING A BETTER BAY AREA: Fremont

Bryan told his clients, "This home here is priced at $2.3 million."

Rozina and Pijoel Karki already live in Fremont. They are looking to be move-up buyers.

"If we find a perfect home, move-in ready, we are willing to put in an offer," Rozina said.

Van Heusen says not only is Fremont attractive, but this area is where many want to live.

"This is Mission San Jose," he says. "So this is the upper crust of Fremont."

BUILDING A BETTER BAY AREA: Fremont's housing solutions

Fremont is the fourth largest city in the Bay Area, only surpassed by San Francisco, San Jose and Oakland. Among the Big Four, Fremont has the second most expensive housing, following only San Francisco.

"It is a really large city in the Bay Area and it is more expensive than many people think," says Cheryl Young, a senior economist at Zillow. She says, "San Francisco is $1.3 million for a typical home. Fremont is just under a million. So like $999, $800 or something like that."

Prices have dropped just shy of 5 percent from their height here, but the increases are still staggering. According to Zillow, in October 1999, the median house in Fremont sold for $313,600. Ten years after that, in October 2009, the median price is $523,500. Ten years later, last month, the median price was $1,065,700.

"Fremont has risen through the ranks over the past few years," real estate agent Van Heusen says. "They've got, believe it or not, better schools than Cupertino and the job growth here is exceptional. Also, proximity. You are 20 minutes to San Jose, Silicon Valley and 25 minutes to San Francisco. It kind of makes sense."

That brings us back to our home shoppers, who love Fremont and see it as a great deal, even at more than $2 million.

"Fremont is still affordable when compared to the Peninsula and the South Bay,'" says Pijoel Karki.

He's right. Across the Dumbarton Bridge from Fremont is Palo Alto, where the median cost for a home is $2,852,000 -- two and a half times the cost in Fremont.

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