Global Warming Could Fuel (Future) San Francisco Real Estate Market

Coming off the heels of possibly the warmest day in San Francisco for the entire month of August, and actually seeing the sun at the coast (I think we broke 70 yesterday), it got me thinking about this recent New York Times article, “Think It’s Hot Now? Just Wait“.

Apparently, “July wasn’t just hot — it was the hottest month ever recorded, according to NASA. And this year is likely to be the hottest year on record. [Makes me wonder how August stacked up.]

Fourteen of the 15 hottest years have occurred since 2000, as heat waves have become more frequent, more intense and longer lasting. A study in the journal Nature Climate Change last year found that three of every four daily heat extremes can be tied to global warming.

This map provides a glimpse of our future if nothing is done to slow climate change. By the end of the century, the number of 100-degree days will skyrocket, making working or playing outdoors unbearable, and sometimes deadly. The effects on our health, air quality, food and water supplies will get only worse if we don’t drastically cut greenhouse gas emissions right away.”


Take a good close look at those maps and think to yourself. If it gets hot as hell, as predicted, where would you want to live? Where will your golf game be more pleasant? Where will your bike ride not suck because your tires don’t melt to the pavement? Where will that nice Napa Cab taste just right? Frying an egg on the hood of your car is only fun once…okay maybe twice.

Forget for a second the millions of people out there that think California’s one AVERAGE winter last year snapped us out of the drought (we’re sooooo not even close to smooth sailing in that department), and forget the millions more that think global warming and greenhouse gases and all that is some political stunt, and think for just a couple minutes about where is going to be an ideal place to live if it keeps getting hotter? A place where you LIVE and not simply SURVIVE.

Looking at the maps, Maine seems pretty ideal…but the bugs will drive you out of your mind, especially the black flies…I know…they tore me up on a canoe trip down the Allagash. (Actually, all the bugs might be dead by then if it gets as hot as predicted.) Phoenix does look inviting with around 163 days/year over 100 degrees, or maybe Houston with some 99% humidity and 62 plus days/year over 100? Hang on a sec….look at the West Coast!

The West Coast of the United States (assuming we have enough water to drink and keep our food supply alive), seems like a pretty safe bet to me. Now you gotta decide between California, Oregon, or Washington. Tough choice, indeed.

Regardless of where you choose, you’d have to think these most desirable coastal areas are going to get even more desirable as the rest of the nation becomes unbearable, right?

Yeah, I’m in the California real estate business, and I think California is hands down the best State in the Nation, but I bet you never thought about the Global Warming problem like this. Perhaps you should.

Think about the potential increase in value for property near a nice cool sea breeze or coastal fog. A place where average temperatures year-round hover in the mid to high 60s. Think about the attraction of not having to pay ever-increasing energy costs to cool your home…just open the window. Think about coastal real estate. There is no more of it, and it’s gonna get hot, hotter, hottest everywhere else!

If you think I’m nuts, and think our market is destined for a crash, have a look at the S&P Case-Shiller Home Price Index for San Francisco since 1987…lots of little ups and downs, but all-in-all WAY up:


It’s safe to say, San Francisco real estate is pretty much steadily hot, and in the future (thanks to Global Warming) could get even hotter. Something to mull over on this foggy (again) August morning.

Think It’s Hot Now? Just Wait [New York Times]
More Long Term Trend Market Graphs [theFrontSteps]
More Reasons We Live Here [theFrontSteps]
The Most San Francisco Summer – Just One Day In 70s In August [San Francisco Chronicle]

So You Wanna Post A Picture Of You Skiing Powder On Your Facebook…How ‘Bout We Just Tell Them All The Truth

So how is the snow up in Tahoe…I mean really?

As many of you know, I fancy myself a bit of a skier. I watch the weather like a hawk, I have multiple websites and friends I refer to for snow reports, radar imagery, forecasts, and après ski hangouts. If I can, I play hooky from San Francisco real estate any time there is even a hint of a storm. It’s why we live here, and it keeps me sane after countless hours of negotiating, touring property, and talking about real estate.

There is a lot of hype in the San Francisco Bay Area right now about the storm that just blew threw, and the one that is rolling in as we speak, so I thought I’d give you the honest to goodness (don’t post this on Facebook, because it isn’t gloat worthy) truth. It is bony!!! So many rocks! All over the place. Even with the 20″ Mt. Rose just received, it is essentially on top of nothing. If you think Squaw and Alpine have it any better, you’re wrong. Reports I received today from friends that skied there today can be summed up in two words, “It sucked.” There is no base.

If you come up for this round of snow, do not expect to be able to rip pow like you see in the movies or may have done last year. Expect to see a nice line of freshies, point it, and ski it as hard, but tender as you possibly can for fear of what is lurking below. Rocks, stumps, trees, you name it. It’s all just barely under the snow and ready to grab you.

These are what the bases of my skis look like after today. You’ll notice a few core shots.

Anything under two feet of fresh, and you might as well stay home in San Francisco and call this year a bust. If they get three or more feet, it will be a different ball-game, and I will owe all of you that read this and stayed home a beer, because that will mean more cold smoke pow for me!

Hah hah!

In all seriousness, if you find yourself up this way, give me a shout and we’ll take some turns and discuss real estate on da lift!

Woohoo! It’s snowing!

…but it is rocky, very rocky, and insanely windy, so don’t be surprised if a lot of resorts are on wind lockdown tomorrow (Wednesday).

…but…Woohoo! It’s Snowing!

[Update 2/29 @ 21:30 hrs: Snow at Alpine Meadows is really, really good. Go there!]

More Reasons We Live Here [theFrontSteps]
I’m Gonna Have To Call You Back The Next Coupla Days…I’ll Be In Meetings [theFrontSteps]

BlackboardEats, Another Way To Explore All The Great Food San Francisco Has To Offer

Like I said in a post a few days ago, there are things in San Francisco that just make this place great. Things that keep us living here, dealing with parking tickets, traffic, fog, and exorbitant real estate prices. The restaurants and eateries in San Francisco are certainly right on top of every person’s list as to why they love this city, and why tourists come to visit. Food, food, and more food.

San Francisco is an amazing food city, but it’s a tad overwhelming when it comes to dining choices. Sometimes, you just need someone to tell you where to eat NOW and while they are at it, give you a little motivation (in the form of discounts). I’m not sure if you all know (I’m sure many of you do), but there is a great website/service called BlackboardEats that can help us all do just that.

It’s a no brainer, really.

Each week, they send me 2 emails with a restaurant review, written by a local food critic with a corresponding perk—think Groupon with amazing taste and without upfront costs. It’s like a special online club for restaurant aficionados (which I am not).

If you travel, they are in Los Angeles, New York, and Chicago too.

I’ve discovered some amazing restaurants I would have otherwise overlooked, and I’ve saved a ton of $$ with them. As a result, I’m sharing this find (if you haven’t found it already) with you, and I’m even going to give them a little love in my marketplace over there on the right column (no, they aren’t paying me).

Check ’em out.

Toast: Trouble Coffee Co.

Make no mistake, this blog is about real estate. But real estate is all about location, location, location, and San Francisco happens to have some pretty damn good restaurants, shops, trails, architecture, museums, and so much more in so many great locations, all of which directly impact the value of real estate. (How many times have you seen in marketing remarks “Close to shops, restaurants, transportation”?) There is a reason people live in a city…to be close to the things they love.

So, I’m going to start sharing some of my favorite places.

It’s no secret anymore, and the cat is so far out of the bag it’s not even funny, but Trouble Coffee on Judah, almost at the beach, is one of my favorites. I’ve long gone in solely to purchase “the Hammer” espresso beans and pour my own cappuccino at home, and never indulged in their toast (guilty of inhaling the occasional surf snack…or whatever the hell it is they call it though). Until yesterday.

I had the “Toast”. All I can say is that it is hands down the best cinnamon toast I have ever had, and you should try it too.

Image Poach

Outer Avenues real estate is pretty damn hot as well, as mentioned in my post the other day. A little update on that, we were beat out. Still not a done deal with buyer #1 though, so anything can still happen in our favor.

There you have it. Trouble Coffee, yet another reason to live in San Francisco.

Best Coffee in San Francisco

Coffee Fiends Get Your Mojo On, And Get Free Coffee

Those of you that have read this blog for a while know that I have a thing or two for good coffee. In fact, I took it upon myself to definitively settle the debate as to where is the best coffee (house) in San Francisco and hundreds of thousands of people joined in the decision. That was great, but this could be even better…free coffee.

It’s the newest in new startups (I believe they launched two weeks ago), and if you ask me, it’s a great idea, simple in concept, and simple in execution, but oh so delightful in reward. Buy four coffees in San Francisco and get one free.
Step One, Join:
Step Two: Find Participating Coffee Houses:
Step Three, Buy Coffee, Get Free Coffee:
Step Four, Invite Your Friends. Get More Free Coffee:
Step Five, Share Free Coffee With Me.

Simply brilliant if you ask me, and even more brilliant if/when they work the purchase of beans into the equation. I happen to be enjoying some Sweet Tooth at this very moment.
@Mojofiend on Twitter
-<a href="The Best Coffee (House) In San Francisco [theFrontSteps]

The Beard (Brian Wilson) Is Back: Lip Syncing With Cody Ross, Keenan Cahill

…..but you gotta love the Mascot:

…and you gotta love the San Francisco Giants! Come to think of it, maybe the Giants are the reason people still buy San Francisco real estate. Or maybe it’s the America’s Cup coming to town? Perhaps it’s Outside Lands?

Pretty good place we live, eh?

-Source: SFist

Reason We Live Here #17: Getting Snowed In Lake Tahoe Way

Due to the large green/blue blob shown below, yours truly is snowed in. And isn’t it great that within a “short” (I put the quotes because when the snow is falling and the entire Bay Area is driving, it’s anything but short) drive from San Francisco you, and all of your closest friends and family, can be neck deep in a trademark Lake Tahoe walloping.

Too bad Interstate 80 was closed most of the day yesterday. Looks like another day of choke powder skiing for your editor. Damn.