Getting Twisted in Cole Valley (1342 Shrader)

We’ve been in, around, over, and under this remodeled 5 bedroom, 4.5 bath home at 1342 Shrader in Cole Valley, and it is absolutely awesome. It’s coming to the MLS very soon (if not already) and some lucky person (hopefully our clients) will be throwing some killer parties in this great home.

The little cottage out back:

It’s a beautiful house by all accounts and we’re hoping our clients like it when they see it tomorrow, but we can’t help notice… Is that Twister we see?

What else are we to do when the country is in a recession?

Back to topic, there is a great elementary school just down the street (Grattan Elementary) as well as a lovely pre-school on the same block (Jubilee). Oh, and Cole Street is just around the corner, Haight is close by, a park right across the street and the “banana belt” weather Cole Valley gets in the Summer. Yes, we’re fans…

[Update: Sold $2,370,000]

1342, $2,985,000 [property website]

47 thoughts on “Getting Twisted in Cole Valley (1342 Shrader)

  1. I wouldn’t go so far as to call it’s nice.

    and what’s with that room (the twister room) with the black exposed cheap post and beam system; and the exposed round concrete footing.and I also see part of an exposed furnace duct.

    for this price point you should not expect that kind of cheap, exposed stuff. it just looks like a leftover basement space with a coat of paint slapped on.

  2. Coming soon? Did you mean to say “a $515,000 reduction to a property that’s been on and off the market with the same agent since April”?

    For the record, I love pretty much everything about this property. Still out of my range, but I love it at this price much more so than at $3,500,000.

  3. After looking at the pics…this place is pretty awesome so your exuberance can be forgiven. But seriously, why publicize a property you should be trying to get your clients on the cheap.

    $3M for this place in this neighborhood? Maybe. Certainly has a better shot at this price point than at 3.5.

  4. Publicizing because they’re 50/50 and not sold on Cole Valley. Sold on Noe. It’s a long shot that they go for this place and publicizing helps me get a gauge for an accurate price, especially if they go for it off market. Not to mention I talked about posting it with them prior to posting, so I’m covered.

    You gotta give me more credit than that Eddy!

  5. I am biased since I grew up in Cole Valley, but I like it so much more than Noe. the shops are both a little too snooty for me. I spent two years of high school in Noe Valley before it was trendy (long ago when during asbestos removal, McAteer took over James Lick and the poor middle schoolers had to be bussed to DC). Noe weather is pretty nice, stores are cutesy, parking sucked and lots of hills, and it is close to some crappy nabes (which I guess Cole Valley is a bit close to dirty Haight St too). Anyhow, I don’t think a house like this should go for $3M in the two areas Alex mentioned. It would have to be in Pacific Heights with views included. I do think the house look nices. I heard the owners were trust fund babies (nosey friend) that moved out some time ago, so maybe you could get it for less to get it off their hands. Sold for a lot less (maybe pre remodel) a few years back, right?

  6. I would suggest people look past the cute staging. that really has nothing to do with a house.
    from my critical and well trained eyes, two more downsides:
    1. all the downlights in the kitchen creates a shadow right where you wanna work. bad design. no under cab lighting. good design does not use downlights for a kitchens primary light source.
    2. notice the WIDE expanse of concrete sidewalks in front of and on the side of the house..and not one damn tree! no street side landscape. big negative.

  7. “and not one damn tree! no street side landscape. big negative”

    a shovel, three trees and a day******end of “big negative”.

    gee, that wasn’t so hard. even for your “critical and well trained eyes” ;)

  8. “Noe weather is pretty nice, stores are cutesy, parking sucked and lots of hills, and it is close to some crappy nabes”
    >> cole valley weather sucks, stores are funky, parking sucks big time and lots of hills and it is close to some crappy nabes.

    I think CV and NV are equal on all but the weather. CV is cut in 2 nanoclimates. one bad and one normal for SF. NV is cut in 4 nanoclimates, one bad, one normal, and two very nice (one warm and one nearly hot). So if you look for sunshine and heat and no mold, you have to choose NV. (note that I’m not pointing to the other house, only to some sub division of NV)

    I wouldnt dare comparing both houses (it requires a visit in person at least), but to point to the bad stuff on that one, I have to agree with noearch. I actually was stund by the wood fence between the two structures. Yard and fence is CRITICAL in this city where everybody has to deal with rats, molds, rain, gusty winds etc. Changing the fence to a nice one with new strong posts etc would cost peanuts, but would make a strong statement about the “no/low maintenance costs to come” . Instead, they staged the garden with pretty lattice and plants, to fool the eye, the same way they slapped paint in a basement. (and yes, it was a eyeblink effort to plant a couple of trees instead of the pretend greenery staging)
    I would considere this house, but only after a throrough inspection of everything. Like removing a couple of plugs cover to judge for the attention to detail and quality of the remodel.

    I’ve never seen a remodel/flip that pleased me, because of cut corners. But if your clients can weight the flip fairly (saves this and that assle, create this and that drawback), I think it’s a house with charm and character. And the location is good for CV. (corner lot with sunshine and little shadow).
    Add to the cost: add second garage (could be a little as 80k for such an easy job). This is not optional for this address, unless your clients dont have a car and bike everywhere.
    Add to the cost: super easy solar panels 18 or maybe even 24 panels should fit on the south facing roof side. cost: 30-50K. Considering the address, it’s shocking it was not included in the flip – and it’s definitly needed to maintain the standing of the house for the future resale.

  9. Meow Sophie. To each his own, no? I already acknowledged in my first post that they both have the same pros and cons and I just have a preference. Seems as though you do too. I am stund (sic). Geez.

  10. my my sophie,

    “Considering the address, it’s shocking it was not included in the flip – and it’s definitly needed to maintain the standing of the house for the future resale.”

    shocking eh, c’est vrai?

  11. from cv i can ride my bicycle downtown, or to the beach
    or bay. nv is good for getting the car on 280 south…

  12. NV cs CV.
    The hottest nanoclimate is the “mission” part (cf the debate about redrawing the districts. So it’s east of dolores, and specifically the Valencia corridor (guerrero @ 23rd). Fair Oaks would be perfect, because still in the “hills” – compared to SanJose 2 blocks down which is flat. (helps pick up the smallest breeze when needed)
    The warm nanoclimate is the “st Luke” part – the borders are difficult to pinpoint, but it would be Guerrero/SanJose-29th-Sanchez-CesarChavez (+/- half a block all around, specially to avoid the winter shade of RedRocks around Comerford)
    The horrible weather is the valley part of west of castro/north of clipper, and to less extend, up Valley street.

    PS: comfortable is up to you. The hot part is too hot for me, and the warm part might still be too hot for me without a good insulated house and sunbelt design (smaller windows, back-front natural ventilation of the house etc)

  13. Thanks Alex for clarifying. Before I got my REducation and started taking my RE matters into my own hands I got burned by a few too slow RE agents or too chatty agents that potentially cost me 10’s of 1000’s of dollars by poor negotiating and tactic skills. I still content that a good buyers agent is worth their weight in gold (well, maybe not at today’s gold prices, but you get the point).

    Playing a seller is a great tactic and can save you big bucks.

    What exactly do you mean when you say “if they decide to get it off-market” Hmmm. My kind of agent!

  14. “The warm nanoclimate is the “st Luke” part – the borders are difficult to pinpoint, but it would be Guerrero/SanJose-29th-Sanchez-CesarChavez ”

    This is so not Noe Valley to me. I mean, come on. San Jose and 29th? It feels more like Bernal and Outer Mission than Noe. I’ll give you a few of the blocks between Guerrero an San Jose. But east of San Jose? No way.

    By the way, Steffano’s on 30th and San Jose makes AWESOME pizza. Not good. Not very good. Great, real Italian pizza.

  15. @paco: yea, I basically agree with your sassy comment. the point I make is this: I suspect that many people just don’t see the wide sidewalks and treeless streets as a negative. Just look at how “harsh” the house looks from the corner. and seriously, I’m talking about more than just 3 trees and a dsys work. I advocate major tree planting and street landscaping. That means landscaping at the curbside with trees located in that strip, and additional landscaping NEXT to the house. There’s no need to have concrete next to the property line. terms of real estate value, I think everyone would agree that street landscape ADDS value to a property. It looks better, it “feels” nice and adds a positive impact to the sale price.

    Again, my self described critical eye is for those who wish to see houses in a less emotional way. After all, this is the largest purchase most people will ever make. Why not be VERY critical when it comes to spending your dollars? So, I advise people to look past the staging, the clever artwork, the soothing colors. Sophie had some very good additional comments.

    Look critically at a good floor plan, the right kind of lighting (downlights in a kitchen (over the counters) are just bad design. Look for quality plumbing fixtures, good mechanical systems and solid foundations.

    For the asking price of almost $3m, the buyer should be critical, and expecting well done street landscaping should be a part of the total package.

  16. You neeed to pick your spots though. A pure southern exposure should not get a tree in front of the house, and if you place one there you have made a mistake. Northern California’s warmth is not ambient warmth. Placing a tree in front of a southern facing facade is going to cool your house down, big time.

  17. fluj. plant PALMtrees, not magnolias if this is your problem. The point is not the amount of green leaves, the point is breaking the parking-lot-like curbside with something pleasing the eye, and catching some rainwater instead of routing it to the sewage/bay.

  18. sorry fluj: I disagree. if one is overly concerned with some shading of the house, then I would select a deciduous tree for that south location. it will provide nice dappled shade during most of the year, and lose leaves in the winter to provide sunshine. there are many varieties that make great street trees.

    Yea, I probably do obsess on the lack of trees and green in our city. It’s important to me, and when you see neighborhoods with well developed street landscaping, you almost always see nice properties and higher prices.

    Besides, it’s just nicer to walk down a tree lined street.

  19. @fluj:
    thanks for the example, but it doesn’t support your point of view. The front yard is beautiful, lush and green. The living room (facing the trees) appears very warm, pleasant and sunny.

    What perhaps is going to be cooler and shadier is the rear yard, since it’s north facing, and the house shades it a good deal of the year. South yards always bring a price premium.

    I dont think your argument holds up. There are many species of trees that would NOT heavily shade a house, north or south facing.

  20. Yeah well I sold the house next door to that one about a year and a half ago. I know for a fact its southern sunlight is at least halved by that tree.

  21. ah..ok…

    you sure it wasn’t more like 53% shaded than just halved? maybe 67% shaded?

    you always this stubborn and narrow minded? lighten up a bit dude. it’s just opinions.

  22. I said “halved” — come on. Big deal. No percentages. Hey maybe it was actually 43%! It’s a big old tree in front of the southern portion of the house. If it don’t subtract warmth, tell you what, I’ll drive over there and eat it.

    And nobody said anything derogatory toward anyone else until you just did … but then again you always do if a thread goes long enough, doncha?

  23. anyway, curbside trees, perhaps pollarded or pleached, could be kept low enough to allow sunlight into the house while creating a delightful sidewalk passage on this southern exposed elevation. but noarc, you must concede that planters too close to the foundation will invite moisture issues sooner or later…tsk, tsk.. getting a little sloppy are we?

  24. sorry to disappoint ya paco…but……
    sidewalks against the property line walls do NOT keep out water..there are things called cracks that let water in, and it usually runs straight down to the earth.

    sidewalks are porous anyway..water will find its’ way in somehow.

    and landscaping directly next to the house is more sustainable anyway..runoff goes in the ground as opposed to running down the sidewalk to the gutter..

    I love all these various excuses that people come up with for negating trees and sidewalk landscaping. they are just that: excuses.

    a house with landscaping will always sell for more..and that also means a larger commission to the agent.

  25. don’t get me wrong-i advocate planting as much as possible. but if its to be right up to the property its better in a container of some sort. water should always be directed away from the house.

  26. paco. I so disagree. For complex reasons, we had to do the exact opposite: remove planting beds.
    Once you open the curbside concrete, you create a TON of opportunities, and this include actually improving, upgrading, draining the foundations you just uncovered.
    Looking at the house, it’s likely that the foundations are – what – 1-2feets below grade? So you can open the sidewalk, upgrade your fondations with a brace (think teeth braces), 6in of concrete, a nice waterproofing membrane, and then, lay the bottom of your planting area with a layer of drainage.

    Cost: a few thousand. And if you dont actually touch the existing foundation, you dont even need a structural permit, because you only create a planter bed, with a side effect of protecting your foundations. (make sure you pick the right contractor so the job is well done – and a structural engineer is more than welcome so the job is actually IMPROVING the house).

    What if you dont do this? because of the light slope, you DO have water running from the hill toward your house, you DO have water pressure in the soil against your foundations, and eventually, some of that water will find its way right under the twister mat. like a few drops here and there.

    That’s actually my whole point against flips. Remodeling can be useful (10%), cosmetic(90%) – like any flip in the city. Or it can be useful (60%) cosmetic (40%) – a rare occurence in this shallow world.

    The difference between both is to make every move serve several purposes – like, what if we plant trees AND improve the foundations. or What if draining the lot can give an opportunity for urban trees?

    opposed to
    – lets slap epoxy on the basement room to seal the moisture away (one purpose only and 90% cosmetic)

    Again, I’m not saying this is a bad flip. I’m just saying that the purpose of a flip is to make a house sweet to move in, with NO consideration to further resale value, NO consideration to maintenance costs, and NO consideration for invisible improvements. (if it can’t add $$$ on the photos, it’s not done).

    (sorry Alex. I’m really not trashing this house, I’m only pushing a specific [and general] argument)

  27. At least I got some people to talk about trees and street landscaping. that’s all.

    just trying to raise the awareness of the VALUE of doing it, both for the benefit of the property and the neighborhood at large..

    it’s not hard to do.

    it’s not very expensive.

    it makes a house look 100% better from a curb appeal pov.

  28. If I had $2.8 mil, I’d rather buy in Pac Heights, Cow Hollow, or The Marina hands down.

    Inflationary environment. Got to buy property, all you can now. Rents are going to go through the rough, so is everything else.

  29. no arc,

    for once, we agree.


    deflation’s a’comin’.

    not a good time to load up on re by any means.

  30. WTF? Are people still paying 3-million to live in Cole Valley sans view? There is an interesting ‘compflip’ in Eureka Valley on 19th and Douglass for ‘gasp’ 4-million plus…what are your thoughts, are sellers still living in 2007?

    [Editor’s Note: Thanks for the comment. We’ll be putting this on the front page of the site on Monday with some of our thoughts.]

  31. This place sold for $2.37 MM.

    Let’s hear those cheerleaders now …. editor, fluj, sleepiguy … and the hundred reasons why the house did not fetch $3.5 MM.

  32. Thanksgiving is over, turkey lurkey. So why are you still gobbling?

    (For the record I am on record somewhere on here guessing $2.5M about three months ago.)

    Cheerleader. Gobble.

    Keep reading!

  33. James. just walk there this week or next week, and everything already in the shade at 3pm is your bad weather/wet/mordy part of CV. The fast (and wrong) answer is the L made of West of Shrader and South of 17th.
    The right answer is above: everything in the shade. So it’s really all about orientation of houses, side of the street, and each up and down of the hills.

    And vice versa, houses still in the sunlight this afternoon after 3pm are in the good part of CV.

    Hint: check the closest wire/light pole. Check the presence of mold on the north and east sides of the post. Check the roof edges, check the windows sills for black smears etc.
    A post/tree/facade at Carmel@Stanyan wont be the same as a post/tree/facade on Grattan@Cole.

    In the summer, this becomes pretty obvious, like the temperature drops 10F within a block. For me, a house on the west side of Stanyan would get an automatic -100K from the same house across the street, just for mold and health reason – unless the backyard has extensive drainage, soil stabilization (landslide), and clean tree line (the impossible condition when you dont own the forest above)

    Now it’s all about perception. For some people, molds and trees and shade are whimsical. For me it’s dirty and creepy and cold (I’m all for passive heating, so no central heating in my house – something not possible in the above “L”)

    Second Hint: stand at Clayton@17th with a map in your hands, and draw the shade line that you can see in CV over your map (there are several pedestrian stairs and places to look over CV and see the shade. Walk around, get familiar with the hills with your own leg muscles, Print a district map and color green and red as you really like or really dislike any block, based on shade, hills, etc)

    Third hint: of course, visit the house. Check the garden, the bottom bricks of the stairs, deck, touch the basement walls for moisture, check the laundry corner for stash of mold, check the sashes of the windows, open/close the windows for raining black powder. Feel the difference between the rooms and windows facing south/west, and the rooms and windows facing north/east.

    PS: the same works for NoeValley, GlenPark, Miraloma etc. All the places where the hills can create a real sun/health issue.
    PS2: it’s not that mold can/should be avoided. But a 100yo house not properly maintained in a wet area of SF will have more issues than a 100yo house in say, folson@25th. So maintenance and history of previous tenants, occupants, becomes part of the “contractor inspection” of the house as a “most likely mold behind the surface”.

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