Reader Reports: A Walk Up The Hill (Clipper)

We love our readers and we love when they report back to the mother ship. This from “Sophie” who decided to take a walk up the hill (slightly edited for flow, and links added to properties mentioned).

“Restless kids, so-so weather: A great day for a walk uphill!

532B Clipper – TIC – $499,999
This is a great unit in need of work: a simple knock down of all the crap (read “added american closets”) and it’s a great unit. tad bit high price (no parking, problematic deck etc) – but still something to look at.

490-492 clipper – RH2 – $1,300,000 (and 3.5% commission to selling agent), inlaw WITH tenant.
Tiny owner unit, but smart and practical. Work with NO permit! (duh! check the stair railing!) With no parking, the price is a bit high.

682 clipper – SHF – $1,475,000
floor plan is very odd. I dont like at all the top floor (master suite above living), but the lower floor 3 bedrooms are ok, with a great additional lowest level (storage, mudroom, position of laundry etc). I HATE the windows, like you pee in the face of the clipper street drivers. All the windows and window coverings and drapes need a rework/updates (soundproofing, light, sun, heat, views etc). However, a MUCH better deal and a sweeter property than 565 Clipper.

481 clipper – RH2 – $1,800,000
I guess I still hate everything about that one as much as before. However, I find not acceptable to keep that property on the market in the current condition of next door house. Many people walking with us were scared by the construction, and it would have needed a lot of courage to dare going in (I would have, but the wind started to pick up, and I didnt want to scare the kids). Property should either be off market for the 2 months to come, OR not have an open house – and be flagged as such in MLS. For once a property could have some legitimate excuse for having a larger DOM – use it (although this property is a recurring stalefish anyway.)

469 clipper – empty lot. $939,000 [Editor’s Note: Careful what you say Sophie…;-) ]
The proposed plan being totally ugly, I have to say that the lot is large, garage access is easy because no parking spot in front and above the house.
Alex – nice talking to Mike. Nice guy. (I still think it’s a tiny bit high. price drop should have been to $899,000 to spark some new interest).
Marketing-wise – I would be scared by buying a lemon – ie: the previous owner bought the lot, spend the money in architect – then DROPPED the plan to build its dream house? WHY? neighbors? If the plan is not approved, then it’s not only worth zero, but it has some negative value as being a “doomed” project. Marketing as a empty lot with no string attached should be considered at this point. OR I’d have someone draw 4-5 projective plans for that lot to show the richness and variety of options. If facade is protected by historic crap, state that in marketing, if not, market as empty lot with 2 garage access.

565 Clipper – SFH – $2,149,000
That one gets my “worse design of the day award”. The house was designed with NO CONSIDERATION to the environment. This house is a fishbowl whose oversized ugly windows frame the worse possible views in Noe Valley – fixer uppers (with no hope of being fixed) on every single lot around the house – ugly unkempt yards, unpainted houses, garden shacks etc. As expected from brainless designers, they spend some thoughts and money into design like hiding a beautiful new painted and tiled courtyard behind privacy etched glass – and then, have a “I need to call the vice squad” window in every single bathroom – with views of rusted pipes and leaking walls. Bozos!
Now let’s trash the inside design. stupid garage layout. Thoughtless blackhole between the living room and the kitchen. Super low ceiling in lower level (serious problem in the lower bath). Ridiculous hallway in the upper level. Crazy-the-architect-was-on-pot master suite layout. [Greatest award for the psychiatric ward toilet in the master suite]
Then of course, for that price, as an agent said, it MUST have a view or a nice block (one of the noisiest blocks in Noe Valley).
-> lower to $1.8-1.9 to get moving.

1280-1282 Clipper- TIC – $1M+ each [can’t find these in MLS].
At least the seller did a smart move: bring a GREAT agent on board. Richard was showing great today, providing straight forward info. That should help moving those units, along with a (new??) reallocation of parking spaces.
Finishes are still underpar, obviously the seller did not read any TFS comments. Still skin cutting glass edges, etc. Still very poor design and finishes. Should move without too much of a problem around 1M a piece with asking UNDER 1M.

Last, the cherry of the day.
3882 25th – SFH – $950,000 (set as 2 units).
The agent is doing a GREAT marketing. At this price, it would be the treasure of the day. Unfortunately, it’s a probate, so who knows what will be the final price.
Needs less than 50K for moving condition, then spend months or years of do it yourself to get a stunning house at a super low price. Biggest problem of the house is that it’s a small lot for Noe Valley. Biggest asset: it’s a do it yourself (DIY) job with very little and basic work to do (with stunning results).
Projected budget: 100K for foundation/double garage etc. Bring utilities to garage level, and get a bonus gigantic (legal or not) storage level (full floor storage as of today, but clogged with HVAC and hot water systems).
200K for finishes throughout the house (if using a good contractor). Everything is there, it’s just removing added partitions. Open budget for new kitchen and baths (1master + 1 up + 1 half main level).
The major point is that the house is set as 2 units, so work can be done floor by floor with no connection/impact to other floors.

That’s it.

One more note: Agents were as predicted. From the MLS marketing (and the company name) I could guess if the agent would be a pain – or efficient.
Now more than ever, the TALENT and COMPETENCE of the agent will move a property, more than just the property alone. So keep working hard – while the profession will shed its dandruff and clean the path for better days for you.”

Thanks “Sophie”. Well done.

If anybody else cares to provide your reader report don’t be shy sending it in: [email protected].

7 thoughts on “Reader Reports: A Walk Up The Hill (Clipper)

  1. 1280 church closed 06/05/09 at 950K. that makes 2 units sold and on leased.
    (building was bought 1.6, then rebuilt. first unit sold at 1.4.
    cash flow: income 2.4 – 1.6 minus rebuild costs – adm costs [agents, taxes, interest etc]. I doubt they are positive)

    ((note: one more Z screwed up data with closing prices on the same file for both building and units))

Leave a Reply