The Facebook of San Francisco Real Estate (

The time has come to unveil the latest creation, We hope you like it, and we hope you participate. We even give props to SocketSite. We’re calling it “A Social Network for real estate obsessed San Franciscans”. Go check it out at www.theFrontSteps.ORG (note: You currently must type the www, and don’t forget the .org).


(sorry for the blurry screen shot.)As for the future of…we’re keeping it around for a while until we see how plays out.

We hope you join and participate. Invite as many people as you’d like, create as many groups as you’d like, post as many photos as you’d like, write as many blog posts as you’d like, discuss anything and everything in the Forum, and generally overdose on San Francisco Real Estate. Have fun!

2956 Webster: 8 Offers, 4 Cash, 1 Winner, 7 Losers

From sfnewsletter:

We’re really trying to stop publishing these things, but they just keep coming up. This week we have 2956 Webster in the oh so popular Cow Hollow District. This is a 2 bed, 2 bath condominium that was asking $1,279,000 was absolutely swarmed, received eight (yes 8 ) offers, four of them all cash, and ultimately closed at $1,410,000. Yes…that much over ($131,000).

Forget for a minute this property sold above asking, because as we’ve said before there are some grey areas regarding sales above asking. What we all need to focus on is that there are still seven (yes 7) very hungry buyers for two bedroom condos in this area at this price that were beat out, and those were the buyers that stepped up to write an offer. There were probably more that didn’t even want to compete. Guess what? Those buyers are likely still out there.

When the Price is Right

Before you haul off and shoot the messenger, this is one of many emails we receive on a daily basis. We’ve tried to tone the cheerleading down a bit, but when it keeps on coming from other sources (not Realtors) it’s kind of hard to pass up. So…


Awesome places that are priced right continue to sell at competitive prices all over the city.

19 Delmar St. [3 bed, 3 bath, $1,795,000] just went into Escrow as did two condos on Sacramento in the $2.1 range.

Lots of buyers out there! Wow.

No, this is not from MarinaPrime, ResortAtSquawCreek, Later, BoomTime, or any of the other people that sound oddly like the same person. It’s from someone entirely too well connected to not know the difference.

19 Delmar [sfnewsletter listing detail page]

Ask Us: Calculating 30 Year Fixed Mortgage Rates

Where readers ask and we try to answer.

How are 30 year fixed mortgage rates calculated? My Real Estate agent said that it is an average of the trailing 12 month’s surveys by WSJ and, can someone confirm this?

As soon as a mortgage professional chimes in, we’ll post the answer here. Since we’re a bit busy, it may not be up right away, so check the comments.

Kelly McCray responds: “30 year fixed rates are based on what mortgage BONDS are selling for at any given moment.”

San Francisco sees $100,000 per square linear foot!

For a wheelchair ramp:

Another way to feel good about how our local tax dollars are used? Or alternatively, one can take great pride in the efficiency of our city government. Let’s just take a pile of dollar bills, make a big ole’ pyramid, and burn it down in front of city hall, what’s the difference?


Wheelchair will cost $100,000 a foot [Matier & Ross sfgate]

Comment du Jour: Little impact from raising conforming loan limits, and the end of Stated Income Loans

Kelly McCray comes through with a comment that will be heard around the world!

I was at the east bay CAMB [California Association of Mortgage Brokers] legislative update meeting yesterday. It is becoming quite clear that there will be little, if any, impact with the raise in conforming loan limits. This news is disappointing to say the least. Fannie Mae is planning on charging a premium for loans over $417K, so what was the point?

And more…

I am very concerned for the consumer right now. There is a lot of legislation on the table both at the state and federal level that will make it extremely difficult for borrowers to obtain financing, with or without a broker. On the state level, stated income [loan] is very likely going to be outlawed. 100% financing is on the chopping block as well.

And you think we don’t report the doom.

Ask Us: Why choose a mortgage broker over a bank?

Where readers ask and we try to answer. Kelly are you listening!?

Why would a [mortgage] broker be better than a bank at this point in the market. I am an investor and have used brokers and bankers, both have been of great service to me in the past. But, I have relationships on both sides of the coin and it seems the playing field is level.

In the past I have used a broker for a faster turn time, more creative loan types, and reduced income documentation. Where as today, it seems as if there is no advantage to utilizing the broker. Perhaps the rate is a small amount lower(.125 at most), the fees are larger, there is more uncertainty and lack of control that the broker has in the grand scheme of things, and the banks they choose from, well, I have direct access to them. i.e, Wamu, Wells, Chase, Citi.

Please provide clarification for me. It seems like we have entered a 20 percent down world, regardless, and I would love some insight on the subject. I prefer to stay anonymous. Thanks

Since you preferred to remain anonymous on this, we had no way of contacting you to clarify the “and the banks they choose from, well, I have direct access to them. i.e, Wamu, Wells, Chase, Citi.” sentence you made. You lost us on that.

Regardless, thanks for the question and hopefully Kelly or another mortgage broker or possibly some bankers will come in with some answers.

Stats & Numbers: Single Family Homes (Jan ’07-Jan ’08)

Single family ’07 vs 08 from Garrett.

District Map (PDF)

District 1 Jan-07 Jan-08
Number of Sales 7 7
Median Selling Price 1,000,000 1,250,000
Average DOM 47 66
District 2 Jan-07 Jan-08
Number of Sales 20 21
Median Selling Price 788,000 830,000
Average DOM 54 56
District 3 Jan-07 Jan-08
Number of Sales 4 9
Median Selling Price 774,500 960,000
Average DOM 58 60
District 4 Jan-07 Jan-08
Number of Sales 27 11
Median Selling Price 871,000 1,155,000
Average DOM 57 56
District 5 Jan-07 Jan-08
Number of Sales 13 17
Median Selling Price 1,180,000 1,530,000
Average DOM 66 48
District 6 Jan-07 Jan-08
Number of Sales 2 3
Median Selling Price 1,250,000 2,050,000
Average DOM 111 60
District 7 Jan-07 Jan-08
Number of Sales 7 9
Median Selling Price 2,647,500 3,350,000
Average DOM 63 38
District 8 Jan-07 Jan-08
Number of Sales 2 0
Median Selling Price 1,241,500  
Average DOM 43  
District 9 Jan-07 Jan-08
Number of Sales 13 10
Median Selling Price 1,025,000 792,500
Average DOM 41 45
District 10 Jan-07 Jan-08
Number of Sales 48 20
Median Selling Price 676,500 561,500
Average DOM 66 100

Data Provided by SFAR

What’s up with the silence?

As many of you know, this little San Francisco Real Estate blog (not so little anymore) is a hobby. My main focus is still selling real estate in San Francisco and making sfnewsletter the best it can be. I’m currently working with many clients, as well as enjoying seeing sfnewsletter take off, not to mention we’re in the process of developing a new theFrontSteps. So hang tight, and we’ll be back to normal (new) programming before you know it.


Alex Clark (the editor)

p.s. We’ll still be posting during all of this, but on a less voluminous scale.