As previously mentioned, my mother's aunt owns a house over in Fremont, on a lot that is zoned L-2. She and her husband have moved to a retirement home and the house is for sale. The price is high, of course, because it's in a terrific location, but they haven't been getting many calls; no surprise really, with the slow economy. However, I'm wondering if pursuing a land lease could be an option for building on this site.
For those who have never heard of a land lease, it is an arrangement where the owner leases the land for, say, 99 years and the developer else builds on it, then pays the owner a monthly rent. Unico does this downtown on the Metropolitan tract; in fact I work in one of these buildings. Anyway, it's an interesting scenario that could possibly lead to lower prices.
Check out this article from the Wall Street Journal for some pros and cons of buying a co-op that has a land lease.
Any lawyers or real estate professionals out there with experience in land leases?