Underwater Alameda property selling for $400K – KTVU FOX 2 San Francisco

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There’s a property near good schools and a community center in Alameda that’s being listed for $400,000.

But there’s a catch.

It’s literally underwater. 

“I was like, ‘Oh no,’” East Bay Realty and Lending real estate agent and broker April Jones told KTVU on Thursday. “I’m like, what is this?” 

Her listing for 610 Grand Street is completely upfront about it too. 

“This is a water lot,” the Redfin listing states outright. “An investor’s/developer’s opportunity.”

The description even says the 10,130-square-foot lot with zero bedrooms and zero bathrooms is “nestled in a residential lagoon.”

“Come create and build a slice of heaven where the backyard is an aquatic oasis of calm and peace,” the listing beckons. 

That “calm and peace” will first need approval, however, by the city of Alameda, the Army Corp of Engineers, the Water Board, Public Works and the Bay Conservation and Development Commission. 

Jones said that she believes “some type of platform” would have to be built over the easement area, and that the future homeowners would have to figure out how to use a dinghy to get from one side of the lagoon to the other. 

Still, Jones is reminding prospective buyers that it’s all about “location, location.”

The property is just minutes away from the Alameda South Shore Shopping Center, the Oakland airport and the Coliseum. 

As of Thursday, the property, which was first reported on by Alameda Post, has been on the market for 303 days. 

Jones said one of the last people to show interest was an engineer.

But there was no follow up.

“I was actually thinking of reaching out to her again,” Jones said. 

Jones thinks her price point is a good one, as she’s looked at comps in the neighborhood and homes in that area are valued at more than $4 million. She said a vacant lot nearby was listed for $800,000. 

Alameda Magazine said that this lot was originally San Francisco Bay tideland and part of property owned by Arthur Cleveland Oppenheimer—a fruit-processing magnate. The property never had a home built on it.

In 2022, Alameda County’s Treasurer-Tax Collector put the tax-defaulted 610 Grand Street, up for auction with a minimum bid of $1,142, reported Alameda Post.

The property was sold at auction in March 2023 for $100,100 to its current owner, a San Lorenzo-based pastor, who did not realize the property was underwater until Jones went to visit it.

Apparently, the pastor had looked up the address online, but the GPS gave him the incorrect address. 

He said that he and his wife have been trying to buy property since 2014 and have not been able to afford anything. Now, he’s spent the money he saved on a waterlogged property.

Alameda County tax assessor Henry Levy told KTVU that buyers have to do their own due diligence. The county has to report environmental problems with properties, Levy said, but it’s not their responsibility to disclose zoning issues. 

In an interview with KTVU, the pastor, who didn’t want to use his name, said he wanted to buy the property because it was “very cheap.”

“So I started the bidding,” he said.

Jones said the pastor is now putting the property up for sale to recoup his losses. 

“You know, he was very disappointed to find out that it was, you know, underwater, and the challenges that were going to come along with trying to sell it,” she said.

Jones’ advice for anyone buying a home? 

“I mean, first of all,” she said, “if you’re intending to purchase it, any property, even through a tax lien, you know, try and drive by and see where it’s physically located.” 

SkyFox flies over 610 Grand Street in Alameda. 

An aerial view of 610 Grand Street in Alameda, which is underwater. 

Street view of 610 Grand Ave. in Alameda via Redfin 


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