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May 2, 2022

Relocating to Monte Sereno? 6 Things to Know Before You Move

Relocating to Monte Sereno? 6 Things to Know Before You Move

Monte Sereno is a small town of under 4,000 residents, lying just south of San Jose and around an hour’s drive from San Francisco. Monte Sereno means “Serene Mountain” in Spanish, and once you visit, you’ll quickly learn why the city bears this name. If you’re considering relocating to the area, read on for local knowledge and insider real estate tips. The market for Monte Sereno real estate is currently highly competitive, but if you’re interested in Monte Sereno homes for sale, it’s best to find an experienced local agent to assist you.

Here are some things you should know about Monte Sereno:

1. Monte Sereno was first established as an agricultural community

If you visited Monte Sereno in the early 1900s, the first things you would have noticed would have been the livestock, ranch houses, orchards, and dairies. Over time, the natural beauty of the area began to attract artists and writers looking for peace and inspiration (as you’ll read more about below, in the case of John Steinbeck.) Monte Sereno has remained a smaller community, in part due to the fact that a commercial presence never developed in the city.

Preserved as an almost completely residential town, you can learn more about the history of Monte Sereno at its friendly municipal events.

2. John Steinbeck wrote “Grapes of Wrath” in Monte Sereno

The esteemed American author John Steinbeck is best known for his works “Of Mice and Men” and “East of Eden.” Steinbeck won a Pulitzer Prize in 1940 for fiction and followed this accomplishment two years later with a Nobel Prize in Literature in 1962. While living in Monte Sereno with his wife Carol from 1936 to 1938, Steinbeck wrote “The Grapes of Wrath,” and put the finishing touches on “Of Mice and Men.”

The house where the Steinbecks lived is still standing today, but it is privately owned and is not currently open to visitors. However, Steinbecks’ connection to Monte Sereno is still an interesting piece of local history to know when talking about the town.

3. Monte Sereno may not be a big town, but if you like the city, it’s easy to get there

Monte Sereno is located 12 miles southwest of San Jose, and San Francisco is only around 50 miles north. If you’ve got your eye on Monte Sereno homes for sale but want access to metropolitan amenities, you can be in either city in less than an hour without significant traffic. San Jose and San Francisco are also accessible via public transportation, although it may take a bit longer to get to the city via bus or train changes.

If you want to stay close to home in a less populated and beautiful rural setting, you’ll have every opportunity to do so in Monte Sereno. But if you prefer the occasional hustle and bustle of the big city  — or if your work is based there — it’s convenient to get there from Monte Sereno.

4. The schools are ranked highly

The largest school in the Monte Sereno area is Saratoga High School. Based on feedback from Niche, Saratoga High is considered the third-best public high school in California. Niche also ranked Saratoga High School as the #1 college preparatory high school in California, with 90% of its students testing proficient in math and 93% as proficient in reading. Around 1,400 students currently attend Saratoga High.
Nearby Los Gatos High School ranks as the 47th-best public high school in the state, which is still quite the accolade in a state as large as California. Newsweek even featured the entire district as the top high school district in the state! You can see why Monte Sereno homes for sale are especially sought-after among parents with growing children.

5. If you don’t feel like going all the way to the big city, there’s plenty to do in Monte Sereno

Do you enjoy fine wines? Check out Testarossa Winery. Love live music? See if there’s an upcoming concert at The Mountain Winery that you might like. Want to take advantage of the awesome Bay Area weather and spend the day outside? Consider visiting Sanborn County Park, Los Gatos Creek Trail, or the El Sereno Open Space Preserve. The downtown Monte Sereno area also boasts several lovely cafes and storefronts. Locals also recommend Old Town Los Gatos for great shopping, dining, and people-watching.

6. The weather is excellent

As most people familiar with the Bay Area are aware, its climate is usually mild and pleasant year-round. In the summer months, the temperature may creep up into the 80s — but rarely does it get much hotter. December is the chilliest month of the year, with an average daily high of 58 degrees and average lows that remain above freezing. When you buy Monte Sereno real estate and make plans to settle in the area, you won’t have to worry about spending any time shoveling snow or hiding indoors from the summer heat.

Get help finding your dream Monte Sereno home 

Shopping for Monte Sereno homes for sale can be challenging. In addition to its lovely landscape and proximity to San Francisco and San Jose, the homes in Monte Sereno are typically luxurious and expensive. Currently, the market is considered a “seller’s market,” meaning that demand for housing surpasses current stock. Many houses will receive multiple offers and sell above the asking price.

However, there are still houses to be had, and while it may feel overwhelming at first, the Monte Sereno housing market isn’t one you need to enter alone. Stilla Raissi’s knowledge and expertise will be a great asset as you search for Monte Sereno real estate. Raissi loves helping clients get the buying process started — contact Stilla Raissi today.

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