I've always had issues at home. The signal does increase by walking outside, probably to the level that it should be in doors (2-3 bars). I definitely do not get full coverage near where I live (off of Del Mar and Fruitdale). Pulling the SIM card did not resolve the problem.
Being in the epicenter of Silicon Valley would lead me to believe that a tower needs adjustment, as my phone can touch about 6 of them. I'd try that cell extender if it were free. I find Verizon to have the best national service, but in the end, it's not worth paying the extreme premium if I can't get decent signal at my house. Thanks for the advice, but I guess it's time for an exit strategy. T-Mobile is offering a great promotion right now to try out their service with zero hassles.