Exterior at 349 Ash Avenue, Carpinteria, #21 | Credit: Chad Hackett

Address: 349 Ash Avenue, Carpinteria, #21
Status: On the market
Price: $618,000

When your mother announces that she’s decided to sell her house, it can pull at one’s heartstrings in unexpected ways. Naturally, that’s the case when it’s the home you’ve grown up in, but I learned this week that such news can also stir up emotions even if you’ve never lived in the house. My mom ​— ​at age 80 ​— ​has decided that it’s time to downsize.

Mom has lived in her home in Silver Sands Village in Carpinteria for the past 18 years. It’s a bright, two-bedroom, two-bath mobile home located just one block from the beach and adjacent to the Carpinteria Salt Marsh Reserve. Mom’s place — a k a space #21 ​— ​has a fireplace, a washer and dryer, a storage shed for her bike, and a cute little garden out back that grows the sweetest cherry tomatoes in town.

We’ve cooked many Thanksgiving dinners in the spacious remodeled kitchen and played boisterous games of Aggravation in the dining room. The home enjoys an open layout, with the kitchen, dining, and living rooms conveniently conjoined, just perfect for family gatherings. The second bedroom has hosted numerous houseguests, including two different sets of our cousins from England last year. Visitors love to vacation at Mom’s bed and breakfast by the sea.

The kitchen at 349 Ash Ave.

That’s why, when she called to tell me that she was putting her house on the market, my first reaction was shock. What’s wrong? Where could she be going? Mom loves her house. We all love her house.

Silver Sands is an owner-owned park, which means that each of the 80 homeowners has equal membership in the nonprofit corporation that owns the land. But the real allure of Silver Sands is subtler. The vibrant sunsets span the beach and the mountains, the ocean breeze is gentle, and the pace is laid-back. Without a doubt, the top selling point for Silver Sands is the location. Every time I’m there, no matter what’s on our agenda, our visit includes a stroll past the salt marsh and down to the beach to check the surf, look for shells, and walk the dog.

I asked Mom what she has loved most about her home of 18 years. Here’s just part of what she had to say: “I love the open floor plan; it’s light, bright, and great for entertaining. At the same time, the fireplace lends a nice, cozy feeling. I’ve used the fireplace quite a lot, even on some of our June-gloomy evenings. On the other hand, I’ve never felt the need for air conditioning because there’s always a nice offshore breeze. My house has plenty of storage, especially in the kitchen, and a walk-in closet in the master bedroom.”

The park is named Silver Sands Village, and there is a village feel to it. There’s a pool with an outdoor kitchen and barbecue, as well as a community clubhouse available to reserve for events. Silver Sands is also a safe place to live, with a team of CERT-trained residents ready to assist neighbors in emergency situations.

When I asked Mom if there were any downsides to her little piece of paradise, she thought for a minute and responded, “Some people might not like the 7 a.m. alarm clock!” The Amtrak train to San Diego stops at the Carpinteria station every morning at seven.

Other than that, Silver Sands is a very peaceful spot. Half the owners are part-timers, so it’s only on holiday weekends that there’s much traffic, which consists of families walking past on their way to the beach, pulling wagons loaded with umbrellas, sand toys, and children.

It all made sense when Mom told me that the new home she is hoping to buy is also in Silver Sands Village. It’s a one-bedroom, one-bath space, so although we’ll be a little cozier on Thanksgiving, we’ll still get to enjoy the sunset views, the beach proximity, the neighbors in the village, and all the other perks that Mom loves. Come to think of it, if we reserve the clubhouse now, we can barbecue our Thanksgiving turkey poolside. I’m not sure why we haven’t thought of that before.

349 Ash Avenue #21 is for sale in Carpinteria, listed by Lynn Z. Gates of Village Properties Realtors. Reach Lynn at lzgates@villagesite.com or at (805) 705-4942.


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