It looks like the home Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg was renting in Palo Alto, CA is back on the rental market. Price? $7,850/month. The Craigslist ad announces:

Prestigious location! Charm and functionality! Gorgeous 2 year old 4+BR/3BA Single Family House. Chef’s kitchen with gas stove. Only 2 years new. Approximately 2350sf. Huge family room with the view of Kitchen. Washer/dryer on the second floor, wood burning fireplace and beautiful wood trim are some of the amenities of this house. Walk to Stanford University, restaurants on El Camino Real and extremely close to Stanford shopping center. 2 car parking garage. Please call for an appointment. Lease term 12 months or longer. Only $7850/month.

But, the real frenzy is in finding out where Mark Zuckerberg has moved. It has become sport for bloggers to find Zuck’s new digs, probably due to the irony that the man who has been accused of exploiting people’s privacy settings on Facebook is so guarded himself. Except for last night on TV. Kara Swisher has posted the full, fascinating Zuckerberg interview with Lesley Stahl of “60 Minutes” in which Zuckerberg announced a new version of the Facebook profile.

> See Homes of Tech Titans

> See Palo Alto, CA homes for sale

> See Palo Alto, CA home values

[Source: CNBC]

  • Irish Mike

    Hi Diane,

    I enjoy the website, and love the Zillow concept. I am a Structured Credit analyst by trade, but grew up in a home where my mother was a real estate agent, and several other family members were mortgage brokers. I’ve followed real estate pretty extensively for the better part of 15 years. The last three or four years have been worrisome for me. Obviously watching my mother struggle with the struggling real estate market was tough, but I was more concerned about the overall outlook of how our society views real estate property values in general.

    I remember watching CNBC late one night in 2009, and people were calling in looking for advice on their current housing situations. Many were upside down, and had zero clue of how to escape the situation. I distinctly remember one young lady basically saying she was going to walk away from her home. She had plenty of cash, but couldn’t justify staying in a house worth half as much as her mortgage. The analysts didn’t really argue the contrary. I couldn’t believe my ears.

    It was at that point where I realized that 2008 and 2009 should have taught us that we cannot continue to operate under the fallacy that home prices will always be on the incline. What if home owners were offered a mortgage deflation insurance on their home values? Home prices fell almost 20% across the country over the last three years. Places like Florida, Nevada, California, Arizona, and Michigan experienced much greater losses. During this time many people became “locked in” a loan on a home that was worth a considerable amount less than what they still owed to the bank. This made it extremely difficult to move. Faced with this problem, many Americans walked away, ruining their credit and the ability to purchase another home in the future.

    Having a housing deflation insurance product would allow the home buyer to hedge against a potential loss in their homes value (Think “GAP Insurance” for home values). It’s incredible that so much of our net worth can be tied into the value of our home, and we’re not currently given the opportunity to at least hedge against potential losses.

    Looking forward to 2010, banks are under a tremendous amount of pressure to overhaul the mortgage industry. I think the American home buyer, and the banks, will be much more risk adverse as a result of this fallout. Having the option to hedge against potential future losses in home values will fall into that kind of thinking, and would benefit home buyers and banks alike.

    Zillow could be a great source of tracking real estate values. You obviously have the resources necessary. Most agents/brokers I’ve talked to about this potential product absolutely believe it would be marketable. To me this product could protect borrowers like FHA protects lenders. The impact could actually cause a positive price adjustment across the board in home values, as some of the fear in the market could be alleviated.
    I’d really like to hear your thoughts.
    Thank you,

  • Diane Tuman

    Hi Irish Mike: Yes, these past few years have certainly changed the playbook on how we look at our homes, haven’t they? Your concept of a “Gap insurance” for homeowners makes sense, given the unfortunate circumstances that many of us have experienced lately. Lenders are protected with PMI, but what are homeowners protected with? I think you have a great idea — get it to market… fast!

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  • Bonnie

    I know where Mark Zuckerberg is moving!!!

    He is my new neighbor..

  • Diane Tuman

    Bonnie: You’re living next to the Time Man of the Year!

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