Check Building Permit History Before You Buy

Was that room downstairs added with permits? Was the roof redone ten years ago with permits? Is the two-unit building you’re buying actually zoned as such?

These are the types of questions my clients are often faced with when considering purchasing a home in San Francisco. Properties here often have varied histories, and it’s important to know as much as you can.

One of the best tools for doing so is the city’s online permit site. The online history is useful when you’re doing preliminary research on a property you may be interested in purchasing.

Sellers are required to present a printed 3R Report from the Building Department that lists the permit history. However, that report takes weeks to arrive, and you want to do as much as you can to avoid surprises during escrow.

What Closing Costs Do Buyers Pay?

There’s a lot going on when you’re buying a home with a loan, and closing costs can sometimes hit you unexpectedly. In addition to your down payment, you can count on anywhere from one- to three percent in various fees when it comes time to close your transaction.

If you’re paying points, the closing costs will be on the higher end of that range.

Here’s a rundown on the major types of closing costs you’ll see when you buy your home:Continue Reading

Time To Transfer Your Property Tax Base

If you’re a California homeowner age 55 or older who’s thinking about moving, you may have the opportunity to take your property tax base with you. That’s a huge benefit, as property tax bases are a large homeownership expense.

Propositions 60 and 90 are constitutional amendments passed by California voters that allow homeowners aged 55 and over to transfer their property tax base when purchasing a new principal residence. Your replacement home must be of equal or lesser current market value than the original property. And you can only do this once. Prop 60 allows transfers of base year values within the same county, and Prop 90 allows transfers from one county to another.Continue Reading

Coming Soon and Off-Market Opportunities: September 23, 2015

The flood of inventory continues to hit the market. Here’s a preview of what’s to come, or what may never go into the MLS before it’s sold:

2872 25th St / Mission
3BR/2BA 1920s home, in-law down, 1 pkg

2040 Fell #12 / NoPa
2BR/1BA top-floor condo, 1 pkg

1156 Treat / Mission
2BR/1BA top-floor condo, 1 pkg
$949,000Continue Reading

What You Can Buy: Condos Under $1,000 Per Square Foot

It’s no secret that the list price per square foot for condos is topping $1,000/square foot these days—with actual sale prices rising above that. And while I’m not a huge fan of relying completely on price-per-square foot as a data point, I do reference it when it comes to home values.

The good news is that the condo market currently has 125 units listed in San Francisco for under $1,000/square foot. The average list price for condos in this category is $1,144,151, with 15 condos listed for the ever-popular $899,000 price. ($995,000 is right behind that price point.)Continue Reading

130 Gates Moves Into Home Stretch

130 Gates Moves Into Home Stretch

My awesome, vintage-meets-modern-living Edwardian listing at 130 Gates north of Cortland in Bernal Heights has been a revolving door for prospective buyers, agents and lovely neighbors. We have lots of interest, and offers are due next week.

There’s plenty of time to view this special 3BR/1BA home that’s only two blocks from the popular Cortland Avenue restaurants, shops and cafes. We’ll be open on Thursday from 5:30-7:00, and again on Saturday and Sunday from 2:00-4:00.

If you stop in, you’ll be able to see the thoughtful period detailing, charming walk-out garden and spacious kitchen. Not to mention an impressive, restored exterior and garage with plenty of storage space.

List price is $1,195,000. Stop by and see us!

Coming Soon and Off-Market Opportunities: September 16, 2015

New listings are popping up everywhere, on and off the market. Here are my picks for upcoming and off-market listings this week:

745 DeHaro / Potrero Hill
2BR/2BA view home, 2,000 sq ft, three levels, 1 pkg

242 San Jose / Mission
Architecturally significant 4BR/2.5BA + guest quarters, 27′ x 175′ lot, pkg

2842 Pierce / Cow Hollow
2BR/1.5BA condo, 2 pkg
$2,550,000Continue Reading

Get in touch:

Eileen Bermingham

Zephyr Real Estate


BRE# 01352627

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