From Overbids To Underbids, What’s Our Market Going To Do?

Remember this NOPA multi-unit that went from $1.6M to $822k? Check out this 50% ownership in a Cole Valley 4 unit Victorian that just sold for 13% under asking after being on market for 51 days. In case you didn’t get that…that’s a two unit purchase into a 4 unit building, which you will own in tandem with the person that previously owned the whole thing (yet another reason to own property in San Francisco…you can slice/dice and still get it sold!)

As for the rest of the top 10 Underbids, here you go:

Address BR/BA/Units List Price Sold Price Underbid
117-119 Downey Street 2-4 Units $1,350,000 $1,175,000 -13 %
16 Knott Court 3/3/2 $949,000 $832,500 -12 %
350 Lansdale Avenue 3/3/2 $1,595,000 $1,439,800 -10 %
252 9th Street #403 2/1/0 $859,000 $785,000 -9 %
77 Amber Drive 4/3.5/2 $1,999,000 $1,840,000 -8 %
964 Central Avenue 2-4 Units $1,845,000 $1,700,000 -8 %
2040 Fell #12 2/1/1 $935,000 $872,500 -7 %
643 Greenwich Street 5/4.5/3 $4,250,000 $4,000,000 -6 %
1816 Castro Street 2/1/2 $899,000 $850,000 -5 %
650 Turk Street 0/1/1 $549,000 $525,000 -4 %

As for the market…that’s anybody’s guess at this stage. My listings flew off the shelf (I will definitely take credit for that), while others languish. Super Bowl hype is finally over, listings are hitting the market, so now we get to see what will happen.

If the market shifts it will still be a tremendous time to sell your property, as well as finally a great time to buy. We are experts at helping you do both. Just give us a shout.


Where to Buy a Home In San Francisco For Your Money

The charts below are based upon 2015 YTD transactions reported to MLS by July 24, 2015 . We’ve generally broken out the neighborhoods with the most sales within given price points. To a large degree, if you’re buying a house in San Francisco, your price range effectively determines the possible neighborhoods to consider. That does not apply quite as much to condos and TICs: Generally speaking, in neighborhoods with high numbers of condo and TIC sales, there are buying options at a wide range of price points – though, unsurprisingly, the number of bedrooms increases as prices get higher.

Of course, era of construction, views, average size and many other features and amenities can vary widely between neighborhoods.

These charts will be easier to read if you adjust your screenview to zoom 125% or 150%. A San Francisco neighborhood map can be found at the bottom of this report.

Where to Buy a HOUSE for under $1 million in San Francisco

The overall median HOUSE price in the city in the 2nd quarter of 2015 was about $1,350,000, so the under million-dollar house is becoming much less common. The vast majority of house sales under $1,000,000 now occur in a large swath of neighborhoods running across the southern border of San Francisco: from Ingleside and Oceanview through Crocker Amazon, Excelsior, Portola and Visitacion Valley to Bayview. These southern border neighborhoods are by far the most affordable house markets in the city. (They don’t contain many condos at this point, though some big developments are planned.) Neighborhoods that not so long ago had numerous sales in this price range – such as Central Sunset and Parkside, Outer Richmond, Bernal Heights and Miraloma Park – have now generally appreciated over the last 3 years to the point where such sales are increasingly rare.

The horizontal columns reflect the number of sales under $1 million in 2015 YTD for each area, while the median sales prices noted are for all house sales during the period. Median price is that price at which half the sales occurred for more and half for less.


Where to Buy a CONDO, CO-OP OR TIC for Under $1 million in San Francisco

The overall SF median condo price in the 2nd quarter of 2015 was about $1,125,000. Sales under $1m still occur in almost every area of the city that features these property types, but a studio unit in Russian Hill may cost the same as a 2 bedroom unit in Downtown. Some areas with large volumes of sales, such as South Beach/South of Market or the greater Noe Valley district, offer units for sale at virtually every price point. In such districts, what will vary will be the prestige and amenities of the building, the size and graciousness of the unit, the floor the unit is located on, whether parking is included, and the existence of views and deeded outside space (decks, patios, or, less often, yards).

In the general category of condo, co-op and TIC sales in San Francisco, condos make up about 90% of sales, stock co-op apartments 1 to 2%, with TICs making up the balance. TICs typically sell at a significant discount (10% – 20%) to similar condos, but there are a number of factors that affect the exact price differential.

The horizontal columns reflect the number of sales under $1m in 2015 YTD broken down by sales of 1-bedroom units and sales of 2+ bedrooms.


Spending $1 Million to $1.5 Million

In this price point for houses, one starts moving into a different group of neighborhoods on the west side and in the central-south areas of the city. Within this collection of neighborhoods, one will typically get more house for one’s money in the Sunset, Parkside or Outer Richmond than in Miraloma Park, Bernal Heights or Potrero Hill. In the greater Noe, Eureka and Cole Valleys district, houses in this price range are now difficult to find.

In the charts below, the horizontal columns reflect the number of sales in each area, while the dollar amounts reflect average dollar per square foot values for the homes in this price range in the specified areas.


Condo, co-op and TIC sales in this price range are mostly concentrated in those areas where newer (and expensive) condo developments have come on market – and continue to arrive in increasing numbers – over the last 10 years, as well as, of course, in high-end neighborhoods such as Pacific Heights & Russian Hill, and Noe, Cole & Eureka Valleys.


Buying a HOUSE for $1.5 million to $2 million


Buying a LUXURY HOME in San Francisco

For the sake of this report, houses selling for $2 million and above, and condos, co-ops and TICs selling for $1.5 million and above are designated (somewhat arbitrarily) as luxury home sales. What you get in different neighborhoods for $2 million or $3 million or $5 million can vary widely.

The charts below are broken out by increasingly higher price segments within the overall “luxury” price range.

Luxury CONDO, CO-OP & TIC Sales


Luxury HOUSE Sales


San Francisco Neighborhood Map


For prevailing SF median house and condo prices, our interactive map of neighborhood values can be found here: SF Neighborhood Home-Price Map


District 1 (Northwest): Sea Cliff, Lake Street, Richmond (Inner, Central, Outer), Jordan Park/Laurel Heights, Lone Mountain

District 2 (West): Sunset & Parkside (Inner, Central, Outer), Golden Gate Heights

District 3 (Southwest): Lake Shore, Lakeside, Merced Manor, Merced Heights, Ingleside, Ingleside Heights, Oceanview

District 4 (Central SW): St. Francis Wood, Forest Hill, West Portal, Forest Knolls, Diamond Heights, Midtown Terrace, Miraloma Park, Sunnyside, Balboa Terrace, Ingleside Terrace, Mt. Davidson Manor, Sherwood Forest, Monterey Heights, Westwood Highlands

District 5 (Central): Noe Valley, Eureka Valley/Dolores Heights (Castro, Liberty Hill), Cole Valley, Glen Park, Corona Heights, Clarendon Heights, Ashbury Heights, Buena Vista Park, Haight Ashbury, Duboce Triangle, Twin Peaks, Mission Dolores, Parnassus Heights

District 6 (Central North): Hayes Valley, North of Panhandle (NOPA), Alamo Square, Western Addition, Anza Vista, Lower Pacific Heights

District 7 (North): Pacific Heights, Presidio Heights, Cow Hollow, Marina

District 8 (Northeast): Russian Hill, Nob Hill, Telegraph Hill, North Beach, Financial District, North Waterfront, Downtown, Van Ness/ Civic Center, Tenderloin

District 9 (East): SoMa, South Beach, Mission Bay, Potrero Hill, Dogpatch (Central Waterfront), Bernal Heights, Inner Mission, Yerba Buena

District 10 (Southeast): Bayview, Bayview Heights, Excelsior, Portola, Visitacion Valley, Silver Terrace, Mission Terrace, Crocker Amazon, Outer Mission

Some Realtor districts contain neighborhoods that are relatively homogeneous in general home values, such as districts 5 and 7, and others contain neighborhoods of wildly different values, such as district 8 which, for example, includes both Russian Hill and the Tenderloin.

As if that isn’t enough info. If you have any questions, or are ready to talk about buying or selling, here are my deets:

Alexander Clark
Paragon Real Estate Group

Or contact me using this form below:

Off Market Magic

SOLD | Duboce Triangle, Inner Mission, Russian Hill, Mission Dolores

Congratulations to my buyers (x4), and my off market seller! That was quite the whirlwind of activity, and I’m thrilled we were able to pull it all off.

As my client said on my LinkedIn profile, I pulled off a “hat trick that [he] thought was impossible in the crazy San Francisco real estate market…” by not only helping him win a 15 (or more) offer situation on 2169 Folsom (Rex Ray’s old pad), but also coordinating the off market sale of his condominium to New York buyers buying his home (2186A 15th St) sight unseen.

I should add we pulled this off with making the purchase of Folsom contingent upon the sale of 15th…almost unheard of in this market, but we did it! And a special thanks to the listing agent for sticking with us. Phew!

In addition to the above trifecta, I represented the buyers of a great “new” condominium at 323 A Church. Another multiple offer situation that was quite touch and go all the way until the very end, I used my connections at SFO to make sure my buyers’ flight from Germany was not delayed and arrived on time, so they could sign their loan/buyer documents that day or risk getting kicked out of contract:

I also represented buyers of 870 Chestnut, which turned out to be a walk in the park compared to the other deals, as it only contained the usual lender headaches and seller hardball tactics that are almost guaranteed to be a part of any transaction

Big hats off to all of my wonderful clients past, present, and future. Because of you, life is good. I hope you all enjoy your new homes, and remember I am here for you, always.

I appreciate all of you readers near and far, many of whom have become clients and friends, and look forward to connecting with all of you when it’s time for you, or anyone you know, to buy and sell San Francisco real estate.

If you’ve had it in your mind to buy or sell during the post Labor Day listing Bonanza and usual market spike, we should talk now to get your ducks in a row.

Carry on, and continue enjoying your Summer….

For a look at some more Recent Transactions, follow this link

Hey Buyers! Turns Out There’s More Inventory Than You Thought

Have a look at what hit our email in the past couple months, and the companies heavily marketing “pocket listings”, “off market” property, or “not on MLS” opportunities.

You, the buyer, would probably like to know about these opportunities, wouldn’t you? Well…you can’t. Not until these brokerages wake up and join the year 2013, move beyond “private” or internal email as the method of choice for delivering these opportunities, look to social networks for some guidance as to where the buying (and selling) public lives, and get with the program!

Pacific Union, McGuire, Zephyr, Paragon, TRI Coldwell Banker, Vanguard, Sotheby’s, the list goes on and on…you ALL have pocket listings, and you’re all marketing them “privately”, so let’s make an effort to encourage each other to participate in an alternative marketplace to bring these opportunities to your fellow agents and the public, rather than continuing to shove this growing marketplace under the massive bureaucratic rug that is our National, State, and Local Association of Realtors. And for heaven’s sake, quit throwing your colleagues (Climb Real Estate) under the bus for taking a step in the right direction! (You know who you are.) It’s high time an alternative to the MLS takes shape, and the opportunity is right here and now.

[The same properties shown above, with links to the site:]
Dominican Estate [Decker Bullock/Sothebys]
53 Clifford Terrace [Vanguard]
1299 Bush Street [Vanguard]
219 Brannan [Vanguard]
524 Roosevelt [Vanguard]
2876 25th Ave [Vanguard]
466 Hill [Vanguard]
2509 Polk [McGuire]
855 Folsom [McGuire]
2094 Bush [McGuire]
66 Parker [McGuire]
2200 Pacific [McGuire]
171 Caznea [McGuire]
615 Buena Vista West [Sotheby’s]
2245 Francisco [Sotheby’s]
29 Oak Springs [Sotheby’s]
26 Sanford Lane [Pacific Union]
1200 Laguna [Zephyr]
1278 Stanyan [Zephyr]
50 Lansing [Zephyr]
Nob Hill Secret address [TRI Coldwell Banker]
2325 Divisadero [TRI Coldwell Banker]
2220 Sacramento [TRI Coldwell Banker]
465 10th St [TRI Coldwell Banker]
6 Emlin, Kentfield [TRI Coldwell Banker]
595 12th Ave [TRI Coldwell Banker]
850 Powell [TRI Coldwell Banker]
287 Mangels [Barbegelata]

[Editor’s Note: Some of these properties were placed on PocketListings.net, and others have since hit MLS and are now sold, but they did land in our email a very short time ago. You can expect some of these links to be killed by day’s end, due to panicking brokerages.
Finally, if you’d like to be alerted when these opportunities hit our inbox, drop us a line, and we’ll figure out a way to get them to you.]

PocketListings.net: How To Tutorial [blog.pocketlistings.net]
Climb Real Estate, PocketListings.net Join To Bring You More Buying And Selling Opportunity [theFrontSteps]
It’s not listed, but it’s definitely for sale [New York Times]
Remaking Real Estate, Again [SF Gate]

Sorry Smith, Nguyen Wins. Lee A Close Second. Garcia In Third.

Top 10 California Home Buyer Surnames:

Excellent and relevant data C.A.R! I’m gonna go get me a mailing list of Nguyens, Lees, and Chens, and sell me some houses!

The complete report is below (in PowerPoint). Have a ball with the data. I did.

Buyers be warned. Instead of being asked for proof of funds, agents are going to start asking you for your “first and surname” LOL!

California Home Buyer and Seller Profile Report (PowerPoint)

Real Estate Commissions…

(Editor’s Note: The following is reprinted from the Real Estate Bulletin, spring 2012 issue, published by the California Department of Real Estate.)

“The California Real Estate Law (Business and Professions Code §10000, et seq.) does not prohibit the sharing of commissions. Before going further, it must be understood that this section and its analysis only covers the California Real Estate Law. Other laws, such as the Federal Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (known as RESPA) must also be considered by licensees.

From a technical point-of-view, the agent/client relationship, and the right to commissions therefrom, belong to the broker. Nevertheless, it is recognized that real estate agents may work together and decide to share or split a commission.

A licensee may share or split his or her commission with another person or entity provided that person or entity has not performed any acts for which a real estate license is required. The Real Estate Law prohibits the payment of compensation to unlicensed persons who are performing acts requiring a license on behalf of another or others.

For example, a licensee may give a share of the licensee’s commission to a buyer, as an incentive to a prospective buyer, assuming the incentive payment is not a violation of some other provision of law. Where an unlicensed person is acting as a principal in a transaction (i.e., seller or buyer), that person is not “acting on behalf of another or others” (licensed activity) and the prohibition described above would not apply.

If licensed acts were performed, a commission can be shared only if the person was a licensed real estate broker or salesperson acting within the scope of his or her license.

Even though a licensed salesperson may share his or her commission, as discussed above, the salesperson’s employing broker must actually direct and control the manner and payment of a salesperson’s share of the earned commission to ensure compliance with B&P §10137.

Pre-supposing that the broker has authorized escrow to directly pay a commission to the salesperson, the commission can be paid to the salesperson out of escrow.

Depending on the circumstances, there may be a disclosure requirement if such payment is a material fact to a party to the transaction.

Lastly, B&P §10137 allows “a licensed real estate broker to pay a commission to a broker of another State”. This refers to another State in the United States of America. It does not refer to a foreign country. However, there is no prohibition in the Real Estate Law against a real estate broker, licensed in the State of California, paying money to a foreign individual or company (which may or may not be a licensed real estate broker in their respective countries), as long as the payment of money is not for acts which require a real estate license in the State of California.”

Got it?