Just Sold in Santa Clara…a real estate story.

Hi Everyone!

You might have noticed (if you follow our Dunn Team Facebook Page) that I’ve been trying to stay active  to keep clients/friends updated on my activity in the local real estate market.  I’ve been posting some pictures of homes recently sold and was going to do the same with this one, but I wanted to share the story that came with it.

Before I start, here is a short list of parties involved in this transaction.  Hopefully this will help clarify who’s who.

– Henrietta Poschen (My great grandmother, Mark’s grandmother)

– Marie Dunn (My grandma, Mark’s mother)

– Mark Dunn (My dad, Dunn Team member)

– Mary Ann Dunn (My aunt, Mark’s sister, Marie’s daughter)

– Conor Dunn (Me)


I am a 4th generation real estate agent.  I currently work with my dad Mark, as you all know, but what you might not know, is that there were 2 generations in our family of agents that came before him.  His mom, Marie and grandmother, Henrietta, were both real estate agents!  My great grandmother Henrietta wasn’t a full time agent but my gram, Marie, was the Dunn Team pioneer.  Living in Los Angeles in the early 50’s and with 4 kids to support, she dove into the world of selling homes.  After a successful year in LA, she decided to move the family up north to Santa Clara, where she still lives to this day.

Now that we have some backstory, fast forward to today.  My Aunt Mary Ann (Mark’s sister) was visiting her mom, Marie (still with me?) a few months ago and saw a “Home Coming Soon” sign around the corner from where Marie (her mom!) lived.

Mary Ann wasn’t in the market for the home but her heart said that this was a great opportunity for her to have a home on the west coast (she lives in New York) and be close to her mom.  My aunt and I chatted about it and we decided that it would at least be worth reaching out to the agent to get some information.

I was able to get a hold of the agent and found out that the home would be on the market in the next few weeks.  There wouldn’t be an opportunity to buy it off the market but I was, of course, welcome to keep in touch with her. A few weeks later, the home hit the market and I trooped down to Santa Clara with my laptop in hand and walked my aunt through the entire house via FaceTime (isn’t technology great!)  The house needed some touch ups but overall it was in great shape and the location couldn’t be beat…on a corner surrounded by other well kept houses and just a short walk from my gram.  It was decided, we were going to make an offer.

At this point I will remind you that I don’t do business in Santa Clara.  Although it’s only 45 min away, it’s a whole different real estate world down there and  if my client wasn’t my aunt, I likely would have put her in touch with an agent down there to help her out.  The only way to go about this was to be completely honest with the listing agent. I told her everything…the family angle, the real estate agents, the fact that I didn’t really know the Santa Clara market…this was the way to go.  We get to talking and it turns out that she KNEW my grandmother…because she had done deals with her when she was just breaking into the industry and my gram was on the way out.  In the listing agents words, “Your grandma was a tough cookie.”  Funny thing is, I think she was being nice.  I grew up negotiating with my grandma and I NEVER won…and I was her grandson!

We end up writing a nice clean offer and I get a call back from the agent the next day.  They had 6 offers and ours was one of the lowest…and we had gone 150k over list price!  I spent some time asking her questions and they gave us an opportunity to come back and give it our best shot.  We upped our offer and sent back a letter from my aunt talking about her time growing up in Santa Clara and hoped the agent would share with her seller.  The agent shared the letter and we got the house!  I am sure the price helped also but still… 🙂

After we got word from the agent, I got my dad on the phone so we could call my aunt together.  A fun part about our job is telling people the good news that they got a house…this time was a little different.  We call to tell her the good news and she just says, loudly, “Oh Sh!t!”

I always talk about the market and how crazy it is but if you are looking around here and pulling your hair out…just be happy that you aren’t a buyer in Santa Clara.

Now we get to go down to Santa Clara for a housewarming party.  3 generations of realtors will be in attendance…and the 4th will be looking down saying, “Oh Sh!t”





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