San Francisco Market Report

Britain’s June vote to exit the EU has already had an impact on the market in the US, including here in San Francisco. Mortgage rates have dropped almost a quarter of a percent, making the monthly payments on our pricey housing slightly more affordable. The result is that it will support continuing increases in sales prices, as decreases in interest rates always do. For example, a $1,000,000 loan at 3.75% costs $4,631/month, but at 3.5% you can borrow $1,032,000 for the same monthly payment. And monthly payments are what buyers focus on.

The Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco published its upbeat Economic Forecast in June which indicated continued strong job and economic growth, continued low business and mortgage interest rates (this was published prior to the vote in Britain), coupled with historically low unemployment and inflation below the Fed’s target of 2%. The conclusion is that they see Gross Domestic Product growth around 2% for the year, at a “pace consistent with moderate ongoing expansion, which we expect to continue over the next few years.”

Of interest was their findings about the cause of the lower labor force participation rates that have been occurring since 2001 that have been noted by many previous reports. It turns out that because of the considerable shift in the wage gains during this time period to the higher income households, that these households have fewer multiple earners. On the opposite end of the spectrum, lower wage earners continue to need multiple earners to make ends meet.

The Fed report hypothesizes that this is a shift that the upper-income households have made in the work-life balance and that the workforce participation in this group may remain low. It is also mimicked by the young workers in upper-income households, where labor force participation is also significantly lower than in the general population.


San Francisco Single Family Home median prices have been hovering between $1,352,000 and $1,380,000 for the past four months since peaking at $1,400,000 in February 2016. That was the second time median prices had hit that number, first back in May of 2015. With the drop in interest rates, we could break through that median price soon because that drop from 3.75% to 3.5% finances another $45,000 in the loan amount for the same monthly payment.

The Condo/Loft Median Sales Price hit an all time high of $1,180,000 in June 2016, up 4.9% from June 2015.



Resale Condos-Lofts jumped 59% in both Days on Market and Months Supply of Inventory compared to June 2015, but both are still in strong sellers market territory.

Single Family Homes are up slightly in Days on Market from 16 to 20 both for May to June, 2016 and from June 2015 to June 2016. Months Supply of Inventory dropped from 2.3 in May to 1.9 in June 2016 and was also down from June 2015’s 2 months. Both market indicators continue to show a strong sellers market.



Single Family Homes New Listings dropped by 55 from May to June 2016. It was also off 61 compared to June 2015. Of additional continuing importance is that the year-to-date number of new listings is down 60 from year-to-date 2015, a 4.1% decline. This helps explain why Months Supply of Inventory is lower than last year.

Resale Condos/Lofts had the reverse trend, with 1 more new listing on the market in June than May, 2016, and 27 more new listings in June 2016 than June 2015. And, significantly, year-to-date new listings are up 167 over year-to-date 2015, which represents a 10.3% increase in inventory. This helps explain why Months Supply of Inventory and Days on Market has risen sharply for Resale Condo/Lofts.

No Mass Exit from San Francisco on the Horizon

At last month’s SFARMLS Building Boom forum, the Bay Area Council presented its latest poll of Bay Area residents, and said that the results show that a third of Bay Area residents “are likely to bolt the region in the next few years”. In truth, that is a big overstatement of the poll results.

What the poll actually asked for was a response to: “I am likely to move out of the Bay Area in the next few years.” What people answered was: 13% said they strongly agree with that statement and 21% said they somewhat agree.

That is certainly not a third of the residents saying they are likely to “bolt” in the next few years. Exactly where would they go? Jobs are here, families are here, the great weather is here. There’s a reason our population is growing – this is a fabulous place to work and live, in spite of high prices and congestion.

District 5

May 2016 Central San Francisco Market Conditions

District 5

District 5’s (See SF Districts Map Here) April numbers continue their strong upwards trend with their highest ever median sales price of $2,287,500. Year-over-year, the median price is up 8.9%.


Resale Condo/Loft Median Prices

Resale condo-loft median prices have resumed the downward trend that started last September with a brief uptick in January and February. hey dropped 2.3% from March to April, landing at $1,245,000, which is the lowest median sales price since April 2015. They are down 0.4% year-to-date and 9.6% since their peak at $1,377,000 September 2015.



While Single Family Homes Days on Market inched up to 17 in April, they are still at historically low numbers.

Days on Market for Resale Condo/Lofts dropped from 19 to 16.


Single Family Homes Months Supply of Inventory dropped slightly to 2.4 from March’s 2.5 and up from April, 2015’s 1.7.



This April there were the same number of single family home listings as in April, 2015. Over all, there have been 136 new listings in District 5 this year, one fewer than last year.

There have been 43 fewer condo/loft listings brought on the market year-to-date in 2016 than 2015. This is a 26% drop. And this is the first time in four years that the number of new condo/loft listings was lower in April than March.



May 2016 Market Report | San Francisco

We saw first quarter median Single Family Home prices in San Francisco jump with their biggest percentage increase (5.6%) in a decade, and in April’s numbers continue this strong upwards trend. The median price in San Francisco was $1,380,000 in April, the highest ever, and a 4.5% increase over March (yikes!).


Resale Condo/Loft Median Prices

Resale condo-loft median prices reversed their first quarter downward trend and went up 2.2% to end at a tie with the previous high median price of $1,125,000, back in June 2015. They are up 1.5% year-to-date.



Both the single family homes and resale condo-loft days on market inched up in April, moving from 16 to 21 days for homes and 21 to 27 days for condos.

This compares to April, 2015’s 14 days and 18 days. So, up a bit from March and up a bit from April, 2015, but still incredibly low days on market.



Single family homes months supply of inventory is up slightly to 2.3 from March’s 2.2 and a little above April, 2015’s 1.8.

Likewise, for resale condo/lofts, months supply inched up to 2.6 and over last years’ 1.7. It is the fourth consecutive months of rising inventory, something to be watched, but still a strong seller’s market.



In April 2016, there were 15 more single family homes listed for sale than a year ago, and this was the first month this year to exceed the number of listings in 2015. We are still down slightly, 1.5%, in the number of new listings homes year-to-date over 2015.

Resale condo-lofts also saw fewer new listings in April 2016 than in 2015, however, overall there have been more new condo/loft listings in 2016 than in 2015, a rise of 6.7%. This helps explain the longer Days on Market and higher months of inventory.


The best way to get answers to any questions you have about our market or timing a successful sale…contact me.

2170 Jackson St

Pacific Heights Co-Op Asks $4.2M Gets $3.8M, And Those Views…

Some things just never get old (like me), and some things never go out of style, like 2170 Jackson #3, which clinched this week’s top spot on our Underbid list by selling 10.59% under it’s $4,250,000 asking price at a cool $3,800,000.

I can hear you all gasping either sighs of relief, gasps of ahhh, or whispers of “what would it be like”…Regardless, amazing property, amazing location, and hats off to all involved, underbid or not.

As for the rest:
Top 10 Underbids, San Francisco

Address BR BA Parking List Price Sold Price Underbid
2170 Jackson Street #3 4 3.50 1 $4,250,000 $3,800,000 -10.59 %
347 Santa Ana Ave 6 3.25 2 $2,495,000 $2,250,000 -9.82 %
240 Flournoy Street 3 1.00 1 $550,000 $500,000 -9.09 %
881 Lombard Street N/A N/A 1 $1,800,000 $1,639,547 -8.91 %
338 Spear Street 2 2.00 1 $2,850,000 $2,600,000 -8.77 %
333 Diamond Street 3 2.00 2 $1,899,000 $1,750,000 -7.85 %
3354 20th Street 3 3.00 1 $2,395,000 $2,225,000 -7.10 %
159 Dublin Street 3 1.00 1 $689,900 $650,000 -5.78 %
330 Twin Peaks Blvd 3 2.50 2 $1,799,000 $1,700,000 -5.50 %
733-743 Waller St N/A N/A N/A $3,850,000 $3,656,250 -5.03 %

This is a very telling list, and a very good sampling of citywide deals that go unreported to you and your friends. There are deals to be had, you must simply be persistent and keep at it. This is an amazing City, and I’m betting it’s just going to keep getting better and better.

Have a great day!


Golden Gate Heights Fixer Sells $455,000 Under Asking, But Still $1.9M

Hey! We’re back. What a great vacation (in Hawaii), and great to see even when I’m surfing, you’re all still browsing. So, on with the show…

Monday was a travel day, so Tuesday is all about the Underbid, and this week a sweet little fixer with amazing carpeting, staging, painting, and lighting (Oh yeah, there is a view too) wins top honors by selling $455,000 BELOW asking (yes, it happens).

It’s a shocker, I know, and I know you can hardly believe your eyes to read that properties sell UNDER asking in San Francisco, but they do, especially when ridiculously over-priced like this one. Regardless, it’s still a fixer for $1.9M, so who are we to judge…

As for the rest, here you go.

Top 10 Underbids San Francisco

Address BR BA Parking List Price Sold Price Underbid
1879 Funston Avenue 4 3.50 2 $2,365,000 $1,910,000 -19.24 %
301 Mission Street 3 3.50 1 $3,999,000 $3,500,000 -12.48 %
41 Rico Way 4 4.00 1 $4,000,000 $3,650,000 -8.75 %
252 9th Street 1 1.00 0 $826,000 $767,000 -7.14 %
3468 17th Street 3 1.00 1 $1,599,000 $1,500,000 -6.19 %
1770 Quint Street 3 2.00 2 $910,000 $865,000 -4.95 %
655 Corbett Avenue 1 1.00 1 $730,000 $700,000 -4.11 %
132 Coleridge Street 134 N/A N/A 0 $2,155,000 $2,075,000 -3.71 %
3305 Broderick Street 3 3.50 1 $3,150,000 $3,050,000 -3.17 %
435 China Basin Street 2 2.00 1 $1,399,000 $1,355,000 -3.15 %

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New Construction Condo Prices Up, Resale Condo Prices Down


Though San Francisco pricing dropped for the fifth consecutive month, contract absorption at new developments indicates that the 2016 selling season is well-underway. Closed sales during February and March are expected to reflect strong market conditions with high demand. Several new developments are expected to commence sales soon, positioned to take advantage of the traditionally robust spring months. According to The Mark Company Trend Sheet.

New condominiums inventory level remains low. There are approximately 655 new condominiums for sale in San Francisco. This includes 450 Hayes (11 units in contract and 25 units available) and LuXe in Pacific Heights (13 units in contract and 21 units available), both sales commenced during the fourth quarter of 2015.

Prices for resale condominiums continued to decline to an average of $889 per-square-foot, falling 10 percent compared to December 2015 ad 6% compared to one year ago. Despite the decrease, the number of resales is trending downward, falling 51% since last month, and 16% year-over-year.



The Mark Company is a leading urban residential marketing and sales firm.

The Condominium Pricing Index, part of the firm’s monthly Trend Sheet (available at, is the tool for tracking the value of a new construction condominium without the volatility of inventory changes.
The Condominium Pricing Index uses a proprietary quantitative method to model the price per square foot of a new 10th floor, 1,000 SF condominium.


Maximum Underbid | Russian Hill Property Wins | List $3.2M, Sold $2.6M

Closed on the last day of 2015 was this 3 bedroom Russian Hill condominium with dramatic views. Listed for just shy of $3.2M and sold 18% under asking, at $2.6M, it takes top spot on the top 10 Podium Underbids of the week for San Francisco.

Interesting to note is that out of the top 10 underbids that closed in the past two weeks, 7 of them are condos and 3 of them are single-family homes (That’s R.E. 101 in college…supply/demand).

And here are the rest.

Happy New Year everyone!

Address BR/BA/Units List Price Sold Price Underbid
1070 Green Street #1402 3/2.5/1 $3,195,000 $2,600,000 -18.62 %
151 Everglade Drive 3/3/2 $1,599,000 $1,400,000 -12.45 %
68 Landers Street 2/2/1 $1,499,000 $1,315,000 -12.27 %
400 Beale Street #1407 2/2/1 $1,150,000 $1,053,000 -8.43 %
3315 Pierce Street 3/3.5/3 $2,699,000 $2,500,000 -7.37 %
33 Perine Place 2/2/1 $1,500,000 $1,400,000 -6.67 %
425 28th Street 3/2/1 $1,695,000 $1,588,888 -6.26 %
355 1st Street 2/2/1 $1,595,000 $1,500,000 -5.96 %
739 48th Avenue 3/2/1 $995,000 $945,000 -5.03 %
1760 Ofarrell Street San Francisco, CA 94115 2/2/1 $879,000 $835,000 -5.01 %
Screen Shot 2015-11-02 at 12.17.03 PM

$440,000 Under Asking | Personal Chapel Maybe Included, Wallpaper Definitely

It only took seven months, but in the end, it got there. SOLD for $440,000 UNDER asking!

You read that correctly, this 6-bedroom single family home in Mission Terrace at 100 Delano Avenue just closed $440,000 below the original (back in March) asking price of $1,600,000. After a price chop to $1.5, then $1.4, then again to $1.3, it appears the Lord finally took pity on this property and landed it on top of this week’s Top 10 Underbids. With plenty of extra space, awesome curtains, wow-tastic wallpaper, and your own “personal chapel” how could you not want to move right in!?

As for the other buyer scores, here you go:

Address BR/BA/Units List Price Sold Price Underbid
100 Delano Avenue 6/3/3 $1,300,000 $1,160,000 -10.77 %
355 Bryant Street 2/2/1 $2,345,000 $2,100,000 -10.45 %
18 Palm Avenue 4/3.5/2 $4,995,000 $4,525,000 -9.41 %
1264 Bush Street 1/1/0 $649,000 $590,000 -9.09 %
78 Gladys Street 3/2/0 $1,195,000 $1,100,000 -7.95 %
1437 47th Avenue 1437A 2 unit $1,275,000 $1,175,000 -7.84 %
601 4th Street #321 1/1/1 $1,499,000 $1,400,000 -6.60 %
2040 Franklin Street #506 0/1/1 $575,000 $540,000 -6.09 %
2730 Broderick Street 4/3.5/1 $5,850,000 $5,500,000 -5.98 %
301 Mission Street #51D 2/3/1 $4,495,000 $4,250,000 -5.45 %

You see…”deals” can still be had in San Francisco.


August Case-Shiller Index | San Francisco Bay Area

The new S&P Case-Shiller Index for August was just released on Tuesday. The prices for homes in the upper third of prices – which dominate in most of San Francisco, central and southern Marin, and central Contra Costa – ticked down a tiny bit in summer, exactly as they did last summer. These short-term fluctuations are common and not particularly meaningful until substantiated by a longer-term trend.

Since Case-Shiller’s SF Metro Area covers 5 counties, it should be noted that not all the markets within the Area move in lockstep: activity and appreciation rates can vary significantly.

As is clearly illustrated below, for the past 4 years, spring has been the big driver of home-price appreciation. Prices generally plateau in subsequent seasons until the next spring arrives. For the past couple years, the spring selling season has started very early, in late January or early February, due to the incredible weather we’ve had in those months. El Niňo, if it arrives, might move the spring pick-up in sales back to mid-March/early April in 2016.


This second chart illustrates the huge burst in prices this past spring. It’s not unusual for the market to slump a little during the summer holidays, almost in exhaustion after the spring frenzy. We’ll have more autumn statistics soon when October’s MLS data comes in, but Paragon has been experiencing its most active autumn selling season in its history in 2015.


And here are 3 longer-term charts for each of the 3 Case-Shiller price tiers for the 5-county San Francisco metro statistical area. As can be seen, the different price tiers had bubbles and crashes of radically different magnitudes in 2006 – 2009, but as far as total appreciation since the year 2000, all of them display very similar appreciation rates.




That ought to do it for your data craving for a while. You might consider following this blog via email (link below) or get on the Twitter train @theFrontSteps, so you don’t miss a beat of San Francisco Real Estate.