West Menlo worth it?

Folks… we have been waiting for right opportunity to move up to MP-PA area… and would really appreciate any thoughts on this property
I think this has potential… is in livable condition and can be re-done to a ~2800 sq. ft house which sell for $3.5M+. Not entirely sure on how “West Menlo Park” neighborhood is considered as compared to neighboring Sharon Heights to west and central Menlo to east


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This neighborhood is referred to as University Heights. It’s the area right around Alameda de Las Pulgas with 50’W lots being the standard. Most of the newer residents are probably dual income. It’s a family neighborhood. It’s quite different from SH (hills) and CM (between El Camino Real and ADLP). IMO, it’s the type of home that is move in ready that people want. Better than livable condition according to the pictures.

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Since you mentioned you want to move to MP-PA area, have you considered paying a little more to get into PA? I assume the PA public school system has value to you. 6k is standard lot size, not particularly large.

One thing I forgot, University Heights is unincorporated San Mateo county. This means that public services are not provided by the city of Menlo Park, but by San Mateo county. Most people don’t use that as a deciding factor, but maybe it matters to you. The county is more generous about max square footage than the city.

UH doesn’t compare to SH or CM. New builds of 2800 sqft are over 4M.

PA schools adds lot of value. MA is crap compared to Gunn

If we could afford a decent house in PA, we sure would do that. We do want a nice school district (though have time for High School, our kid is just 4)… and also want a bit of a comfort in our living space.

Our budget is ~$3M… current options are either buy this MP home and spend $500-700K in a year or so to increase living space to ~2500 dsq. ft. … or else go further up north to San Carlos and explore option like this:

Both MP and SC have good Elementary and Middle schools.


Buy in RWC or Emerald Hills and send your kids to a private high school or the baccalaureate program at Sequoia in RWC

Roy Cloud elementary is a great School


That San Carlos house is pretty good (except that hideous green carpet). Schools are good K thru 12.

This SC house is even better looking. Move in ready.


We have thought about Roy… but the cost of homes is barely 10% cheaper than san carlos - if at all. Doesn’t justify private school cost in my view; would rather pay up premium for San Carlos home now and also enjoy proximity to downtown.

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Yes… we definitely will need a new carpet :slight_smile:

We will go checkout 662 Dartmouth too… but seems outside the price range

Belmont has the same good schools as SC but 1M cheaper. It has lots of hills so you can have great canyon view as well. Slightly farther away from SV assuming you work in places like FB and GOOG.

This why no one wants to send their kids to SF schools.

Do share if you find a nice big house in Belmont on a decent big road!

Are there any $3m houses in Belmont. I built 3 houses in Belmont. Sold the last one in 1996 for $625k. Worth $2m? now

This new built by the Aron guys looks amazing.


I did hear West Menlo has ground settling issues. Other than that, I absolutely adore that area, especially closer to Sharon Park neighborhood. The park is so beautiful.

Commute can be tricky - both Alameda de la Pulgas and Sand Hill can get pretty backed up during rush hours.

West Menlo has highly expansive claystone. There was a lake there once near Camino a Lago. Lots of issues with heave and lifting foundations. Especially in Sharon Heights. Modern foundations have piers driven to 16’ deep. Old houses may heave and subside with the seasons.


Windswept foggy location. Heaven for those who like the sunset district.

Regarding schools, many cities on peninsula have good elementary school and middle school. The high school is a different story. You just have to decide if you want to go public vs private high school.

For Palo Alto, the schools are excellent thru high school. I believe you can get a house that is just smaller than 2500 sq ft for 3M. But might be older home and not as nice as the Menlo Park. San Carlos should be cheaper (/sq feet).

Redfin search:

  • Filter: Price $2.5M to $3M, SFH sold in past 6 months.
  • Average: $2.7M, 4 beds, 3 baths, 1767 sq ft, $1550/sq ft.

On the other hand, for the money you save on house, you can put that into private school. The only thing is that private school enrollment might not be guaranteed, and school can be further from home.

Belmont house 3k ft, selling for only 2.3M.


San Carlos is a lot more expensive than Belmont. Someone told me long time ago SC is PA Junior. Not sure why there’s such a high premium over Belmont. Personally I like Belmont more than SC.