Corona Heights Renovation Creates Hot Luxury Home

Just unleashed upon the luxury market is 446 Roosevelt, a good-lookin’ Spanish-Mediterranean home with all the trappings.

The previous owners gutted the place, but the project went awry and the property was sold as a to-the-studs development opportunity in July 2011 for $1.3M. The current owners picked up the ball and finished the renovation. Now listed for $2,565,000, the 3,000-square foot property features 4BRs/4BAs and continues to benefit from massive curb appeal.

There’s a grand-scale living room with a walk-out deck and fireplace, as well as two bedrooms and two bathrooms on both the main and lower levels. With two master suites, I’m not sure this is a family home, but it’s certainly one that will appeal to a variety of buyers. Also included are a family room, dining room with views, and garage with internal access. There’s also a legal one-bedroom unit, which means this is technically a two-unit building.

With buyers snapping up highly priced homes left and right these days, we’ll see how long 446 Roosevelt stays on the market. Oh, and they’re open from 2-4 this Sunday 3/25!

Luxury Market Revels in Cash Sales


It’s no secret that the trend in sought-after neighborhoods like Noe Valley is for buyers to pay cash for a home—and that doesn’t mean getting a discount, either.

The latest bidding war occurred for a renovated Victorian at 1566 Sanchez. The 5BR/4BA home had LEED Platinum certification and was listed for $2,395,000. Within a week, the seller had received five offers and the home is reportedly in contract for roughly $2.8M in an all-cash transaction that’s expected to close any day now. (This sale was on the heels of the one around the block at 171 Valley, a 5BR renovated Victorian with a white exterior that sold for $3,010,000 in cash in September 2011.) Apparently, the 1566 Sanchez buyers felt comfortable paying $400,000 over the asking price with that comp in play.

And that’s not the only example of this sort of activity. I recently reported the sale at 482 Liberty, the 3BR/2BA condo listed at $1,699,000 and sold within a week for $1,850,000 in cash. But the hot and heavy activity seems to be happening most frequently in the single-family home market.

A quick look at year-to-date, single-family homes sales in the $1.5M+ range reveals that at least one such property has reportedly sold for all cash in neighborhoods as varied at Sea Cliff, West Portal, Cole Valley, Ashbury Heights, Clarendon Heights, Presidio and Pacific Heights, Cow Hollow and Telegraph Hill. 3636 Washington was sold to an all-cash buyer for $10M.

Cash sales have never been uncommon in major cities like San Francisco and New York. However, what impresses me lately is the overbidding in these situations. This goes against the traditional way of thinking that paying in cash will get you a “deal.” Apparently, the buyers out there are more concerned with getting what they want than getting a deal.

Smackdown: Hayes Valley Condo vs West Portal House

It’s always interesting to see what your money will buy at various price points in San Francisco. We’re pitting a cute West Portal single-family home against a slick Hayes Valley condo today. Which property would you rather own?

231 Scott Street #2
List Price: $876,000

231 Scott Street #2 is a two-level, 2BR/2.5BA condo in a building that was constructed in 1998. The 1518-square foot unit is nicely appointed with an open floor plan that includes a fireplace in the living room and a kitchen with granite countertops and stainless-steel appliances. The bedrooms are downstairs, and a staircase from the main level leads you to your exclusive roof deck with city views. One-car side-by-side parking is included. HOA dues are $300/month, and there are two other units in the building.

I had a listing across the street from this property last year, and I can attest to the fact that you’re in walking distance of the heart of the Haight, Hayes Valley, Duboce Triangle, and NOPA. So it’s an excellent location for catching public transportation and hitting up some local restaurants. One downside is that there are a lot of stairs to climb to get to this unit; however, snagging a top-floor unit isn’t always easy. Stairs are sometimes the price you pay for that benefit.

In the other corner, we have 243 Vicente, with a list price of $899,000:

243 Vicente is a 3BR/2BA single-family home built in 1921. The kitchen has been nicely updated, and lovely 1920s period details abound such as built-in cabinetry and coved ceilings. Check out the honkin’ fireplace that’s definitely the centerpiece of the living room:

There are two bedrooms on the main level, and the master suite is on the garage level. This is somewhat of a downside for the family set, as parents rarely want to give their kids run of the upper level all night while they’re downstairs. But you also have a two-car garage, and an excellent West Portal location one block from the main retail district. You’re also a few blocks from the Muni rail line to downtown, and not far from the freeways.

Which one wins this smackdown?

Just Sold: 7 Bennington in Bernal Heights


My clients just closed escrow late last week on the 3BR/1BA single-family home at 7 Bennington in Bernal Heights. Situated on a prime street on the north slope, the home has a nice open floor plan with a formal dining area, lovely natural light throughout and a large garage.

7 Bennington is located one block from the heart of Cortland Avenue, and a few blocks to Mission where you can catch public transportation. 91 Walk Score!

List price: $599,000.

New Price: Noe Valley Condo Now at $699,000


My listing at 156 Duncan is still available, but the new price for this uniquely spacious condo is $699,000 (reduced from $739,000). Though the unit is technically a 1BR, it has a very flexible floor plan. Situated on the top floor of a four-unit condo building, 156 Duncan has skylights, lovely period detail, and a prime parking space in the building that can potentially accommodate a total of two cars. There’s also an in-unit washer/dryer, three walk-in closets, and additional storage in the garage. Did I mention the shared garden? This is an excellent location for South Bay and downtown San Francisco commuters, due to proximity to BART, the tech shuttle stop at 30th & Dolores, J Church and 101/280.

Stop in on Sunday, March 18th from 2:00-4:00. I look forward to seeing you! And check out our Web site, where you can access the video walkthrough from the Features page.

2BRs You Can Buy for Up to $600,000

It’s admittedly a challenge to find a 2BR condo in a central San Francisco neighborhood for under $600,000. But I like a challenge, so I set out to find three 2BR condos in this price range that aren’t dumps. Here’s what I found:

1305 Scott, Western Addition
$595,000

This top-floor, 1127-square foot condo at 1305 Scott is situated in a four-unit building constructed in the 1920s. The unit has a spacious open living room with multiple windows and dining room with fireplace. French doors open to a covered deck for good entertaining flow. There’s also a sunny kitchen with plenty of counter and storage space. HOA dues are $332/month, and the building has good reserves. One-car parking is included. This is a central location (though I should note that it’s in proximity to public housing projects) just south of Lower Pacific Heights and near the Fillmore district, NOPA, Japantown and Alamo Square Park.

75 Moss #11, South of Market
$589,000

I liked 75 Moss #11 when I saw it on broker tour weeks ago. For some reason, this condo—which gets nice light and has an in-unit washer/dryer and parking—has not sold. It was in contract recently, but came back on the market. The kitchen and bath finishes are slick, and there’s a shared roof deck, too. HOA dues are $403.06. 75 Moss is located on a small street between Folsom/Howard and 6th/7th Streets. So it’s excellent if you’re a South Bay commuter who needs quick 101 access; it’s also about a three-block walk to Market Street, where you can catch public transportation.

660 Hayes, Hayes Valley
$595,000

Though 660 Hayes is on the ground level, the floor plan is very functional. There’s a large master suite with work space that leads to a shared patio. There are tile floors throughout and the unit doesn’t get much light, but you do get central heat, in-unit washer/dryer—and a second bathroom! At 1212 square feet, this condo is the largest of the bunch. No parking, but at Hayes & Laguna, you’re in the heart of the neighborhood and can easily catch Muni or hit the freeway. HOA dues are $220/month for this three-unit association.

SF Condo Sales Prices Up, House Prices Down

Condo sales prices in San Francisco increased 9.4% in the past 180 days, according to the latest Zephyr MarketTracker. The median price was $622,500.

Surprisingly, that wasn’t much less than the median single-family home price, which was $669,000. Our sales data roundup includes citywide individual sales that took place in the past 21 days across all property categories.

Thinking of trading up into a luxury home? Take a look at an excellent selection of properties. Plus, the deal behind why Salesforce.com backed out of its Mission Bay campus plans.

It’s all here in the latest Zephyr MarketTracker!

Hot House of the Week: Mission Vic on South Van Ness

Whenever you’re talking real estate in The Mission, it’s important to consider outdoor space because The Mission has some of the best weather in the city. And the 3BR/2BA, 1575-square foot Victorian with the sweet yard (above) at 736 South Van Ness has it goin’ on. (List price: $799,000)

While you hang in the hammock, you can think about the home’s intact period details that feature high ceilings, large windows, and spacious rooms. And you can also be proud of your remodeled kitchen with Viking stove, as well as the rear guest cottage with its kitchen area and bathroom.

There’s no garage, but the sellers have arranged for a potential leased spot half a block away. And yes, 736 South Van Ness is located on a busy street, with four lanes of traffic and a variety of commercial properties surrounding it. (Though there’s a pair of very cool homes directly across the street, so the view isn’t bad.) The row of trees across the property’s front exterior—along with a picket fence—provide a nice buffer. So if you’re looking for a hip, urban home (preferably a single-family house) that’s literally five blocks from the heart of the Valencia corridor, this is it.

Recent comps like 949 Hampshire (sold for $740,000, and needed a gut renovation) and 826 Capp (a 2BR/2BA home that sold for $1,375,000) land 736 South Van Ness at about the right list price. It’s also important to consider that the average Mission condo sales price since October has been $724,000.

Give me a shout if you’d like to see this property, happy to schedule a showing. Or stop in on Saturday March 10/Sunday March 11th from 2:00-4:00 at the first open houses.

What You Can Buy: Condos for Easy South Bay Commuting

I have quite a few buyer clients right now who work at tech companies like Facebook, eBay, Google and Yahoo and who also want to live in San Francisco. Because let’s face it, there’s not a lot to do in the suburbs after dark (unless you enjoy happy hour at Chevy’s). I thought I’d showcase a few condos in neighborhoods that work well for Peninsula commuting, whether by tech shuttle, car, or Caltrain.

First up is 1370 Valencia #1 in The Mission:

Located about three blocks from the popular tech shuttle stop at 24th & Guerrero, 1370 Valencia is all about being in the thick of the Mission scene—with a huge private patio where you can soak up all that hot Mission weather. The 1980s building itself won’t win any prizes for curb appeal, but this first-floor unit has 2BRs/2BAs with 1130 square feet. There’s a wood-burning fireplace in the living room for those non-spare-the-air days, and the kitchen has granite counters and stainless-steel appliances. This is a five-unit HOA with a commercial space, so it’s important to alert your lender to this fact. One-car parking is included, and HOA dues are $454/month. List price: $749,000.

Next up is 325 China Basin #105 in Mission Bay:

325 China Basin #105 is a 2BR/2BA unit with 1316-square foot at the ground-floor level. It’s located in The Radiance, a 99-unit development built in 2008. (Its sister building next door, The Madrone, is in the midst of construction now.) I’m a fan of The Radiance, having toured many of the units during the initial selling phases. The unit has an open floor plan with a private entrance, maple flooring, and kitchen with CaesarStone countertops and stainless-steel appliances. One-car parking and storage are included. Amenities include a common courtyard deck, fire pit, barbeques, club lounge and fitness center. HOA dues are $744.32/month. The Caltrain station is a straight shot up 4th Street, which is about a ten-minute walk from The Radiance. List price: $749,000.

156 Duncan
, Noe Valley

156 Duncan is a spacious, top-floor condo in a four-unit Spanish-Mediterrean-style building. Though the unit is technically a 1BR/1BA, the living room can easily double for a quick, enclosed guest space, and three walk-in closets offer opportunities for an office or nursery. The 1107-square foot condo has lovely period detail, a decorative fireplace in the living room, and updated kitchen and bath with skylights. The bedroom is huge, with plenty of space for a sitting area and closet with organizer system. There’s a shared garden, and a prime parking space in the building that easily allows for guest parking outside your own driveway. HOA dues are a low $325/month. Yes, this is my listing, but I’d be remiss in omitting 156 Duncan from this trio due to its proximity to both 280 and 101, as well as the 30th & Dolores tech shuttle stop. List price: $739,000.

Just Sold: 4674 19th Street in Eureka Valley


I just helped my clients purchase 4674 19th Street in a great part of Eureka Valley. The 2BR/2BA single-family home has wonderful city outlooks, a lovely open floor plan that’s great for entertaining, as well as two nice-sized bedrooms with a stylishly remodeled bathroom.

There’s also a bonus bedroom and bath down that’s excellent for guests, as well as a deck with downtown views. The large yard offers plenty of opportunities for growing vegetables and flowers.

4674 19th Street is adjacent to Kite Hill, so there’s plenty of privacy and a real “Carmel” feel. Just a short distance away is Market Street, which connects you with public transportation.

The home was listed for $899,000 and closed escrow last week for $900,500.

Just Sold: 1126-1128 Masonic


My clients just closed escrow this week on this fabulous three-unit building on Masonic at Haight. The property has a large three-bedroom owner’s unit, as well as one-bedroom and two-bedroom units on the top floor.

The restored three-bedroom unit has hardwood floors and beautiful natural woodwork throughout.  The living room has the original stained glass windows, decorative fireplace, dining room with wainscoting, beamed ceilings and decorative fireplace. There’s also a gourmet kitchen with imported Iranian granite counters and center island with second sink—and an in-unit washer/dryer! One-car parking for the building, plus an additional laundry area in the garage.

All units were vacant at close of escrow, so this is an excellent opportunity for an owner occupier who wants to have a steady income stream from two very rentable units in a highly popular and convenient location.

List price was $1,569,000 and the property closed at the asking price.