(MCT)—Facebook’s initial public offering may have flopped on Wall Street but it sparked prices for homes surrounding its Menlo Park, Calif., headquarters.
Zillow, an online real estate tracking company, credited the “Facebook effect” for a jump in its listings of million-dollar-plus homes for sale in Menlo Park. Those listings “shot up” 87 percent between February, when Facebook filed for a public offering, and May, when its shares began trading on the Nasdaq stock exchange, Zillow said Thursday.
The company does not release the actual number of listings. But it said that on Feb. 1, 25 percent of listings in Menlo Park were for more than $1 million and on May 18, the day of Facebook’s IPO, almost 44 percent of all listings topped $1 million.
A million dollars buys a 1,580-square-foot home in Menlo Park, Zillow said.
The jump in prices is a nice counter to the disappointment of Facebook’s trading debut, which was expected to soar from a $38-a-share IPO price, but instead ended the opening day almost flat.
California-based real estate professional Wendy McPherson said any increase is partly seasonal. There’s always a bump in sales between February and May, as the spring home sales season gets under way, she said.
“Have prices gone up? Absolutely,” she said. “We can see the prices going up every month. Every two weeks.”
Price increases have come as buyers bid against one another for a relatively small number of homes for sale, according to many real estate professionals.
Zillow said that Facebook’s headquarters “is an epicenter for high home values.” Menlo Park median home values are just over $1 million, up 5.7 percent from last year, Zillow said. Nearby, Woodside, Calif.’s median of slightly more than $2 million is up 12.8 percent from last year and Los Altos Hills, Calif.’s median of almost $2.3 million is up 8.4 percent over the year.
©2012 San Jose Mercury News (San Jose, Calif.)
Distributed by MCT Information Services