Will Interest Rates Rise?

One of my preferred mortgage brokers (Tim Wood @ Terra Mortgage) just sent me his newsletter that dives into the question of whether interest rates will rise in 2017. It’s so full of interest rate chatter about Feds, Reserves, Trump, yada, yada…I figured you’d all love it. So here you go:

Are You Sure that Rates are Going Higher?

What if everyone thought we were going to see higher mortgage rates, and we didn’t? Remember that this is exactly what happened 13 months ago when the Federal Reserve Open Market Committee raised overnight Fed Funds in December of 2016, after which long term rates dropped and stayed low for the next ten months. Can an argument be made for the same thing happening in 2017? Perhaps.

After the presidential election, the financial markets pretty much began assuming long-term rates, including mortgage rates, would be higher in 2017. Donald Trump’s potential agenda, which include big tax cuts, infrastructure spending, and broad hiring, certainly seems to point toward higher rates. And the Fed raised rates again last month.

Trump’s stated goals during his campaign imply that rates will be higher in a couple years, especially with the pressures from wage increases nudging inflation higher. Any stimulative fiscal policy from the Trump administration could face an equal and opposite tightening of monetary policy by a Fed that raises short-term rates two or three times this year. (Remember that monetary policy involves changing the interest rate and influencing the money supply. Fiscal policy involves the government changing tax rates and levels of government spending to influence aggregate demand in the economy.)

Among other actions the Fed conducts “the nation’s monetary policy by influencing money and credit conditions in the economy in pursuit of full employment and stable prices.” The U.S. central bank will seek to prevent too much inflation from breaking out in an economy it believes is getting close to operating at its full potential, which means Mr. Trump’s stimulus might run up against the Fed chair Janet Yellen’s (and perhaps her successor’s) counter-stimulus. There are two vacancies on the Fed’s seven-member board of governors already, and Ms. Yellen’s term as chairwoman expires in February 2018, so Donald Trump will have an impact on the makeup of the Federal Reserve Open Market Committee.

The “smartest guys in the room” might be wrong with their forecasts, and that the era of low rates might stick around a bit longer. First, the Trump agenda might pack less of a growth punch than some have imagined. If so, you would expect the same cautious approach to rate increases from the Fed. The day after the election stocks rallied and bonds sold off/rates went up. Trump’s major tax cuts would tend to create a short-term boost in economic growth and higher interest rates. But there are some early signals that the Republican lawmakers who actually have to pass any changes to tax law, especially those in the Senate, are wary of tax cuts that would increase the budget deficit as much as Mr. Trump’s campaign plan would.

Regarding infrastructure spending, Trump has been short on details, and the details matter a great deal for how much an infrastructure plan could lift growth. For example, tax credits that make the finances of building toll roads more favorable are less likely to create a huge boost in activity than spending on upgrading physical infrastructure outright. So on both tax cuts and infrastructure, there’s no guarantee that the actual scale of stimulus will match some of the early post-election talk.

Second, even if the economy does start growing faster, future Trump administration appointees could change their tune on the desirability of higher interest rates. Politicians, once in office, tend to learn that they like low interest rates, and there is starting to be chatter that some in the Trump administration will push for cheaper money and the Fed attempting to hold the line to prevent inflation.

There is always the risk that some elements of Trump economic policy could end up being a drag on growth, like a trade war with China or Mexico, immigration restrictions that limit the supply of labor, or geopolitical disputes.

For the past few administrations presidents have stayed away from weighing in on monetary policy and let the Fed act independently. Mr. Trump has described himself as a “low interest rate person” but attacked Ms. Yellen by name during the campaign.

Looking ahead, even if the Fed kept its short-term interest rate targets low despite rising inflation, long-term interest rates, which are determined by the supply and demand of the bond market, would probably rise. Mr. Trump doesn’t feel bound by the traditions that have governed how recent presidents have acted. So, the future of United States interest rate policy is uncertain – like everything else in the future – but no one should be sure that long term rates are destined to move dramatically higher if at all.
-Rob Chrisman (STRATMOR Group)

#CrystalBall :-)

sf-real-estate-market-report-kwsf-december-2016-pg-2

State Of The Real Estate Union

If you had to guess, what would be the most common question you think a Realtor is asked?

“What’s my home worth?” No.

“Should I stage my home when I sell it?” No.

“Do you think interest rates are going to rise?” No.

All very close, and all very common questions we certainly answer more than we should (which is precisely why for the better part of a decade I’ve helped you answer those questions on your own), but by far the most common question asked by countless people (friends, clients, strangers at parties, on the ski lift, or out surfing) is….

“How’s the Market?”

Sold | 844 Haight | $1,320,000

SOLD | 844 Haight St. | Hayes Valley / Lower Haight | $1,320,000

Finally got this one sold (over asking no less)! After getting in contract and falling out on two different occasions with two different buyers, the perfect pair came along in a deal put together by way of my Top Agent Network prior to coming BOM (Back On Market) again. Third time is a charm. For more details about this wonderfully complex set of transactions, how the market impacted this sale, how this property spent nearly 3 months on the market, and lessons I learned (yes, after 15 years every transaction still teaches me something new), give me a shout.

From the marketing…

So you wanna live in the action, do you? Well, I have just the place for you – 844 Haight sits on the dividing line between Haight Ashbury (considered Lower Haight), Hayes Valley, Buena Vista Park, NOPA, Alamo Square, the Divisadero Corridor, is one block away from the Duboce Triangle area…and you’re in luck, because it hits the market today.


Huge full floor 2 bedroom, 1.5 bath Victorian flat with soaring 12′ ceilings and original details in a vibrant central San Francisco location. Formal Dining Room, Living Room, sitting area, eat-in kitchen w/ Italian Bertazzoni stove, hood and microwave, Bosch refrigerator and Dishwasher, Cherry cabinets w/pull out shelves/inserts, Granite counter tops, pot filler above stove, and Bosch Washer & Dryer in pantry. Travertine marble floors in kitchen and baths. Refinished Hardwood floors throughout. Private deck off kitchen leads to beautiful landscaped garden. Tankless water heater. One car parking. Built-in shelving and huge storage space in garage. Walkscore 93, Transit Score 97 (tech shuttle stop around corner), Bike Score 85 (you’re practically ON the Wiggle). Some would say it doesn’t get any better.

Property Details
$1,295,000 SOLD $1,320,000
Victorian Flat
2 bed
1.5 bath
1 parking
Storage
Formal Dining Room
2 Fireplaces
12′ Ceilings
Bertazzoni Range
Bosch Refrigerator
Bosch Dishwasher
Hardwood Floors
Private Deck
Shared Garden
Washer & Dryer
HOA Dues $300/month

More Recent Sales [theFrontSteps]
Testimonials [theFrontSteps]

Exclusively listed by
Alexander Clark
Keller Williams Luxury Realty International
theFrontSteps.com
alexclark@gmail.com
415-254-5351

SOLD | 666 Post St. #1201

SOLD | 666 Post #1201 | Downtown / Union Square | $732,500

Congratulations to my clients, the sellers, and hats off to the buyer. This quintessential San Francisco residence has just changed hands, and I’m totally jealous.

Tastefully, and eco-consciously remodeled 12th Floor one bedroom, one bathroom unit with amazing views of San Francisco in The Crown Towers – an exquisitely maintained & managed elegant Art Deco CO-OP Building built in 1926, and located just two blocks from Union Square.

1959 Lombard

Marina / Cow Hollow Property Gets $1,200,000 More Than Asking

If you haven’t noticed, posts on this here site have been sporadic to say the least, and will remain so for the rest of the year. That said, I couldn’t help but share this Cow Hollow/Marina District property at 1959 Lombard that just closed for $1,200,000 over the list price!
lombard

For you Commercial geeks, the cap rate on this bad boy is a 2.69%! And “long-term” tenants mean 1 of 2 things…potential to increase rents, or potential to increase headaches. Regardless, somebody saw great value in this building (as they should), and IMHO should be thrilled.

Underpriced? Probably. But let’s consider the larger market logic that compels someone to not only list a property more than one million dollars below market value (when you just don’t know you gotta price it low), but the psychology as an agent that must convince a buyer to offer $1,200,000 MORE than what the seller is “asking”, and the buyer that has to come to grips with that reality.

I’ve been in this game for nearly 15 years now, been through two monstrous peaks and subsequent declines, and some things just haven’t changed…namely San Francisco has long been a premier destination to call home, start a business, raise a family, and invest in real estate. Surrounded by water on three sides, heavily restricted on vertical development, and historical preservation, it’s just that tough to get your hands on some choice San Francisco property.

Pray for snow! Dream of surf. Enjoy the day.

The Goods: Real-Time market data for my clients

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572 Funston

Real Estate Porn For The People…

Who came down with a heavy case of the Mondays…and Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays? I did. Right here.


I know you all want the great real estate porn that got you on this site in the first place, but I’ve been busy, so I figured I’d make your life, and my life, easier…here you go: Check out The Goods, it’s all new, super sleek, works great on your mobile device, and has all of the same great data you’ve come to love (minus my snarky comments).

Want Top 20 Overbids…all there, all the time. Start to notice things like 135 Webster, finally dethroned by 572 Funston.

Want Top 20 Underbids…got those too. Marvel at places like (239 Arletta in Visitacion Valley, which sold for 20% BELOW list…wait for it…at $480,000 to clinch top spot on the Underbids. That’s a $600,000 home selling for $480,000 and the address on the post card to mom will read “San Francisco, CA”.

Looking for Hot New Listings. Gotcha covered there too. No need to wait for me to tell you about what just hit the market in your ‘hood. Grab properties like 164 Belvedere (drooling) and immediately share with your friends to plan your dinner parties when they buy it!

The Holy Grail…Recent Sales…got those too. I was the first in San Francisco to provide this valuable data to my clients on a regular basis, so why should I stop. Such an easy way to track what’s going on in your ‘hood without my annoying phone calls, texts, and emails to remind you how much you love me.

My buyers’ favorite…Stalefish…had to tone this down for the masses and call em 30+, but this is my site, and dammit if I don’t like calling them Stalefish better. A Stalefish is a property 30 DOM* or More…and would you believe 149 29th St is BOM*. For the record just cuz it’s Stale, doesn’t mean it stinks!

So there you have it. Now you don’t need me to update you as often. You want the Goods, you get the Goods. Spread the word.

Fellow agents…we are now offering my service of The Goods to you…your branding, your look, your site…update your people with the same great data. Contact us at info@thegoods-sf.com or nate@thegoods-sf.com to get your pages set up and start sharing this wonderful real estate market information with your people.

*BOM = Back On Market
*DOM = Days On Market
*Duh!

rentcafe

In San Francisco More Households Making Over $150,000/year Choose To Rent Than To Own

Check out this report the kind folks over at RentCafe just sent me:

“With all the talk about renters being squeezed out of the housing market and new high-end construction pushing up rents, we’ve decided to take a close-up look at Census data and see who’s actually driving today’s rental marketplace. We’ve put all our findings in this report here, in case you might be interested in checking them out and perhaps sharing the story with your readers.
rentcafe
While affordability remains a major concern for many low-income renters, there’s a growing number of people that know nothing of – nor care about – the “30% of income on rent” rule of thumb. In fact, there’s a market for wealthy renters and it’s not lacking in demand!

The number of renter households that earn more than $150,000/year increased by 217% in 2015 compared to 2005, with a whopping 1.2 million affluent households joining the ever-growing rental pool in the last decade. Meanwhile, the number of homeowner households within the same income bracket has increased by a much lower 82%.

When broken down by city, things are even more surprising:
– Fort Worth leads the charts with a spectacular 77% increase in the number of high-income renters from 2014 to 2015.
San Francisco may be the second-most expensive rental market in the US – with a startling $3,472 in average monthly rent – but it’s also home to the second-largest number of renters that earn more than 150,000/year: 57K (who also outnumber wealthy homeowners in the city by 4%). That means that nearly 25% of all renter households in San Francisco are in the upper income bracket – the largest share of rich renters/city in the nation.
– Los Angeles has the third-highest number of wealthy renters in the country, approx. 51K, an 8% increase between 2014 and 2015. Still, the majority of LA renters (59.7%) earn less than 50,000/year.
– NYC is the mecca of people with big paychecks – not much of a surprise there. But did you know the Big Apple is home to approx. 212,000 renters that earn more than 150,000/year (approx. 10% of the total renter population)? That’s nearly four times more than the number of high-earning renters that call San Francisco home and 12 times the number of Boston’s affluent renters.”

The report – which you can find here: http://www.rentcafe.com/blog/rental-market/luxury-apartments/1-2-million-more-wealthy-renters-in-10-years/ – contains many more interesting facts and findings (plus some really cool visuals), that will certainly help you gauge local and national real estate economies.

Thanks for sending my way…makes you wonder why so many of those high income earners choose to rent as opposed to buy.

2250 Vallejo Listed $25,000,000

The Rise Of the Underbid

It used to be this Top 10 Underbids list was made up largely of the “ugly ducklings”…the properties nobody wanted…the overpriced “shoot for the stars” sellers…or the homes that just had too much hair on them. Not anymore. Check ’em out. The market has shifted for sure. Buyers…wake up! There are deals to be had all around San Francisco, as we speak.

San Francisco’s Weekly Top 10 Underbids

Address BR BA Parking List Price Sold Price Underbid
327 Cumberland Street 2 1.00 0 $2,350,000 $2,030,000 -13.62 %
2250 Vallejo 7 7.00 2 $25,000,000 $21,800,000 -12.80 %
2028 McAllister Street 3 1.00 3 $1,695,000 $1,500,000 -11.50 %
62 Glover Street 64 N/A N/A 2 $2,500,000 $2,275,000 -9.00 %
3233-3235 Steiner Street N/A N/A 2 $1,899,000 $1,765,000 -7.06 %
5211 Mission Street N/A N/A 2 $1,385,000 $1,290,000 -6.86 %
1379-1383 25th Avenue N/A N/A 2 $2,359,000 $2,200,000 -6.74 %
13 Surrey Street N/A N/A 0 $899,000 $840,000 -6.56 %
955 Rockdale Drive 4 2.50 2 $1,999,000 $1,875,000 -6.20 %
362 28th Avenue 2 1.00 1 $1,270,000 $1,193,500 -6.02 %

In case you missed it, check out 2250 Vallejo (sold for $21,800,000)…holy sh*t that’s a sweet house!

More Overbids, Underbids, Stalefish, New Listings, and Recent Sales [theGoods-sf.com]

SOLD

SOLD! | 1957 11th Ave | Golden Gate Heights | $1,400,000

There is a story to this one…Nonetheless, I’m pleased to report the (finally!) successful sale of this amazing Golden Gate Heights Property.

Nestled in the hills of Golden Gate Heights with wonderful vistas to the North/North East, surrounded by beautiful trees and a lush garden, and tastefully remodeled for the minimalist in all of us, including a painstakingly thought out master suite on the lower level, which opens to the garden, 1957 11th Ave is the home you don’t want to miss.


Having found this wonderfully crafted home built in 1948, the architect/owner of this home set out on a journey to create an oasis of minimalist living and design aesthetic nestled into the hills of this vibrant and bustling city of San Francisco. The kitchen was remodeled in 2008 with a focus on clean lines and simple living while maintaining the charm of the original home. In 2014 the lower level was completely remodeled incorporating a designer master suite with walk-in closet and ultra modern master bathroom complete with radiant floor heat, Hans Grohe fixtures, Ariostea Italian High-Tech Wood tile, and Toto toilet.

Not wanting the upstairs bath to be outdone, it too underwent an extensive designer remodel in early 2016 also with radiant floor heat, Ariostea Italian High-Tech Wood floor tile, Honed Italian MaxFine Calacatta wall tile, Toto toilet, and a wonderfully situated window which make tub soaks and showers feel as if you’re in the garden.

In addition to the remodeled designer master suite, kitchen, and luxury baths, this home contains a total of three bedrooms, approximately 1595 square feet, parking for one car, a woodburning fireplace, hardwood floors with original detailing, high ceilings, views, hallway skylight, a “Romeo & Juliet” balcony from the second bedroom to the garden, a deck off of the kitchen perfect for outdoor dining/entertainment (and of course barbecuing), plantation shutters, new water main, new furnace, tankless water heater, stackable washer & dryer, recessed lighting, and a newly installed irrigation system to keep the amazingly lush garden alive and well.

This home…you must see.

Details:
List Price: $1,295,000
Sold Price: $1,400,000
3 bed
2 bath
1 car parking
Remodeled Kitchen, Baths, Master Suite
Radiant Floor Heating in Baths
Ariostea Italian High-Tech Wood tile
Hans Grohe Fixtures
Woodburning Fireplace
Hardwood Floors
Lush Landscaped Front and Rear Garden
Irrigation System
Stackable W&D
Tankless Water Heater
Recessed Lighting
Plantation Shutters
Views
New Furnace
Toto Toilets

Exclusively listed by:
Alexander Clark
Keller Williams Luxury Realty International
theFrontSteps.com
alexclark@gmail.com
415-254-5351

Contact me for details about this sale, or to talk about selling your home: