San Francisco Gentrification: Two Compelling Articles

If you haven’t already noticed, we real appreciate our readers and will publish most, if not all, of your contributions. This time AMITinSF sends us his/her thoughts:

The first article, is a totally regressive neo-socialist diatribe (predictably, from the sf bay guardian) on, get this, how Google’s shuttle bus is bad for the Mission district!

SF Bay Guardian Article

The second article, from the sf weekly blogs, is a roundabout response, from leading urban historian Joel Kotkin, who has interesting insights.

SF Weekly Article

I think these two articles make for an interesting juxtaposition on how SF is changing. Clearly the writer for the guardian article is bitter, and in my opinion, hypocritical. He claims to have moved to SF 8 years ago, excuse me? That’s like 1999, the height of the dot com boom!?! Also, the endless whiners from some circles of SF’s loony-left need to understand that ‘cool, hip’ artists that came to the mission in the early 90’s were merely a precursor for gentrification.

These artists are partly responsible for displacing working class Latin Americans, who previously displaced Irish families, who… it’s so counterproductive to blame different ethnic and demographic groups for how you don’t like the changes. Get over it! No place stays the same; no one is entitled with permanence to live forever in the mission or anywhere else for that matter. But, will they ever learn?

p.s. Be sure to read the comments at the end of the sfbg article- they rightly ream this guy a new a$$hole. But of course, sfbg will not have the balls to reprint any of these critical responses in the next ‘pulp’ issue.

God, am i the only one who reads the crap-guardian during lunch breaks to get my weekly laughs (as god only knows, sfbg takes its preposterous self so seriously.)

Very interesting take on the matter, and thanks for sending it in.

If you’ve got something to share, please don’t hesitate to contact us. Your opinions, contributions, tips, secrets, and lies are valuable and appreciated.

Redfin Report for San Francisco

Not that we’re suddenly an advocate for Redfin, although we do applaud innovation and entrepreneurship, but when readers ask, we do our best to answer.

“Marlow Harris” asked on our Redfin reboots… post:

In July, you wrote that they [Redfin] had about 15 closed sales in the SF area.

Have they had any more in the last 4 months? If so, what was the average price?

We got this reply from Cynthia Pang at Redfin:

I assume you are looking for SF area only – more than 150 closed deals.

So how many of those have happened in the last 4 months? Well…we don’t know and we just don’t feel like digging much deeper, but maybe someone else can, or maybe someone at Redfin would care to elaborate.

Redfin reboots or at least adds a sf bay area page [theFrontSteps]

Redfin Drowning in Red [theFrontSteps]

Holy shit, you feel that quake?!

Time: 20:05 on 10/30/2007. If you plan on living in San Francisco, get used to quakes. That one literally happened seconds ago (in the middle of posting), and it happens all the time. Still rattles the nerves, no matter how many you’ve been through.


[Update at 20:24: And look at that, the quake site is already updated, and if you break it down further you see it was a magnitude 5.6 centered around San Jose, Milpitas, Alum Rock area. Wow! That site is real time! And that’s a serious quake.]

-In case you didn’t know, we have this site at your fingertips in the “sites of interest”.

Stump the Stammtisch: Questions about Foreclosures

Where readers ask, and we try to answer:

Your posting on 10/25 regarding the property on Vernon Street being sold in light of a pending foreclosure prompts these questions:

1) If a property is pending foreclosure and the owner has filed for bankruptcy can they still sell? I am of two minds on this: 1) selling can forestall the bankruptcy and foreclosure or 2) it is now under the jurisdiction of the court to settle this matter since the bankruptcy has been filed and therefore not allowed to be sold.

2) If a property is in litigation due to an attempted prior sale (money was paid by buyer to bank to prevent foreclosure but final papers never signed by owner) can that property be sold? A check at the Recorders Office website shows that notice has been posted against the owner but not the property itself (ie block & lot number) [We’re assuming you’re talking about Vernon?].

I am not involved in the real estate business – from my questions that is obvious – but I am interested in the events of my neighborhood and our property values and these questions are based on real events.

I find your site very interesting and informative and check it every week or so. Please continue the good work!

I would prefer to remain anonymous if at all possible.


Anonymous you shall remain, and hopefully we can get you some answers.

Fixer Facing Foreclosure, Move Fast [theFrontSteps]

Curb Cuts: Who has the answer [theFrontSteps]

Readers ask on Stump the Stammtisch [theFrontSteps]

You found us how? Through “Real Estate agent layoffs”

Just browsing our “stats”, we found someone hit our site by searching, “Real Estate agent layoffs”. For the most part, we’re independent contractors and don’t necessarily get “layed off”. More like, the broker would pull you aside and say, “Can you really live off of $8000 year?” For what it’s worth, if the market (read: media) keeps going, there will be some fallout.

Theory of the Starving Real Estate Agent [theFrontSteps]

A call to comment (our market, overbids, mortgage mania)

Calling all Realtors, bloggers, and readers in San Francisco! Share your experiences on the market in this thread. I, Alex Clark (the editor), am actually feeling chatty and have been chiming in, and would love some insight from my colleagues as well as all you readers and bloggers. Go ahead…comment. It’s actually kind of fun. We want to know what you think of our market, where it’s going, stories of overbids, triumphs, tragedies, who’s to blame for the mortgage mess, and whatever. Just let it all out. Your secrets are safe with us. (Just keep in mind our national audience. ;-) )

Click Here to comment

Point, Counter Point: More Sub Prime Mortgage Blaming [theFrontSteps]

Stump the Stammtisch: Home Depot, Ammiano, and Goodman Lumber?

Where readers ask, and we try to answer [We think we’ll have to go a bit deeper and call on some other local real estate blogs for this answer]:


“Whatever happened to the proposed Home Depot at the old Goodman’s site [Goodman Lumber on Bayshore Boulevard]? The site is an eyesore and in the meantime the Colma and Daly City Home Depots are packed with customers from SF. Did Tommi Ammiano finally get this project killed?”-Osama Ben Landlord [love the name]

We’re hoping the readers can come through on this. We have no idea. For those that might know even less than us, here’s the first shocker on the subject, and the second, and the “approval”.

“San Francisco hardly has a reputation for extending the welcome mat to big box or chain retailers.

City leaders banned large chain stores in North Beach and passed a measure that makes it difficult to open them along lower Divisadero Street. Last year [2004], the Board of Supervisors basically banned Wal-Mart from town by requiring large stores to obtain special permits to open shop and prohibited such stores in certain neighborhoods. “-SF Chronicle

So…booted by family, banned, approved, and not yet breaking ground.

Anyone know anything on this? Please enlighten us.

Bayshore Boulevard