Here’s a link to a place we looked at last night.
The location on Google Maps satellite.
UPDATE: This one is the leading contender at the moment. It’s got lots going for it, mostly in terms of location (walk to either a shopping center or a cute shopping street). It’s fairly small, though, and the front yard is basically the BART (elevated electric rail) line. But the main issue is its size, though we aren’t at all clear whether we can get a bigger place (in that area) in our range. Anyway, we’ll see. More house hunting and meeting with a mortgage broker this weekend.
We are focusing our energies right now at looking in Albany, because it’s the area with the best school district. It’s also located right between El Cerrito (with the shopping center) and Berkeley, which offers lots of unique mom-and-pop shops and restaurants. Albany is sort of a mecca for families because of the school district. On a trip to a burrito shop on Solano Avenue last weekend, we encountered at least 5-7 families with young kids. So that would be a nice atmosphere to be in.