Category Archives: Market News

Outer Sunset Takes Overbid Title in Q4 2016

The Outer Sunset, Parkside and Outer Parkside led the single-family overbidding pack in the last quarter of 2016, with average overbids that far exceeded other neighborhoods.

Though the average citywide overbid was five percent, the Outer Sunset saw buyers paying an average of 19.5% over the list price, with the Parkside (19%) and Outer Parkside (17.5%) hot on its heels. Other high-flying neighborhoods included Miraloma Park (14%); Portola (13%); Central Sunset (12.5%); Sunnyside (12.5%); and Excelsior (11.5%). Continue Reading

Single-Family Homes: Holy Grail of 2016

Buyers had a seemingly endless appetite for houses when it came to San Francisco real estate in 2016. On the other hand, the condo market flatlined.

The fourth quarter of last year is the best indicator for market activity in early 2017. So here’s how things went down when it came to houses and condos, and what you can expect in the new year:

Single-Family Home Prices Rise, Overbidding Continues
Buyers purchased 590 houses in Q4 2016 for an average of $1,844,851. Many homes listed for $2,000,000 or less garnered multiple offers, particularly those listed for closer to $1,000,000. Continue Reading

Bipolar Buyer Behavior Prevails Through 2016

Two recently closed sales in Eureka Valley and Buena Vista/Ashbury Heights point to the continued bipolar nature of the San Francisco real estate market.

There’s 562 Sanchez, a 4,000 square foot, four-bedroom house a block from Dolores Park. The property came on the market at the end of June for $3,950,000. After withdrawing the listing and then making a few price cuts, the sellers received an offer and the sale closed late last week for $3,500,000—$400,000 under the list price:
562-sanchez Continue Reading

Bark Louder Than Bite in “As Is” Sales

There’s an addendum that frequently makes it into the purchase agreement in many transactions—the “As Is” addendum. I’m often asked by buyers what this actually represents.

The truth is, an “As Is” addendum means virtually nothing. It’s basically a warning from sellers that they aren’t going to be receptive to repairs or credits during escrow. Or, as an attorney during my company’s recent risk management seminar put it: An As Is addendum is when “sellers are putting the flag up and keeping their fingers crossed” that the buyer won’t try to negotiate anything. Continue Reading

Small Bump in House Prices Forecasted for 2017

Small Bump in House Prices Forecasted for 2017

Single-family homes will likely see a three- to five-percent appreciation in 2017, says First Republic Bank’s Senior Managing Director and Portfolio Manager Alan Zafran at yesterday’s annual holiday Realtor luncheon. Trends are pointing to these slight price increases due to supply constraints and the overall desirability of the city. Continue Reading

Gap Narrows Between List and Sale Price in San Francisco

Our shifting market will be seeing a lot less crazy overbidding in 2017 as the gap narrows between list and sale prices.

I’m expecting the list-low, sell-for-more pricing strategy to continue throughout next year. But as our market evens out, it’s likely we’ll see sale prices that are a lot closer to their list prices.

The average overbids in October-November 2016 for houses and condos were 5.5% and 4%, down by half in the same time last year. This pattern will set the pace for 2017 sales, as buyers and sellers reference comps and base values on late 2016 activity.

I’m predicting that a small portion of properties will sell for 25% or more next year—houses in highly desirable neighborhoods, and “classic” condos with period detail in smaller buildings that are near popular retail areas and transportation. But the majority of sellers will be wise to expect values within comp ranges, and set their list prices closer to the likely values.

What The Trump Presidency Will Mean For San Francisco Real Estate

It’s taken me a bit of time to absorb the political events of the past two weeks. It was a challenge to think clearly about the ramifications of a Trump presidency in the first week after the election. But once the shock wore off, I started talking with my colleagues and devouring various trusted financial and real estate news sources for some clues about what we can expect in the San Francisco real estate market over the next four years.

I’ve concluded that the most direct effects a Trump presidency will have on our local market will be related to two things—interest rates and available cash for home purchases.

Interest rates are already higher due to more selling in the U.S. bond market. Rates are at four percent on the 30-year fixed product, up from 3.5%. The lending industry didn’t expect to see four percent interest rates until sometime in 2017. It’s a good time for prospective home buyers to reevaluate what you can afford based on the most current interest rates.

Whether the stock market will generate favorable returns will have everything to do with how much cash is available to home buyers. I’m expecting that the stock market will experience constant ups and downs as the new presidential administration announces its plans and initiatives throughout 2017.

Welcome To The Holiday Home Stretch, 2016

If you’re planning to buy or sell real estate in the near future, it’s important to know that the industry slows down after Thanksgiving. Buyers get distracted with holiday activities, and not too many homeowners relish the idea of open houses after the Christmas tree is up.

The bottom line is that new inventory will substantially decrease after your Thanksgiving dinner leftovers are gone. Continue Reading

Contingencies Creep Back Into Contracts

It was more than three years ago that San Francisco real estate market activity prompted me to write about what buyers need to know when waiving contingencies in a purchase contract. We’d finally dug our way out of the financial meltdown, and buyer competition for properties was on the rise.

Besides paying high prices to “win” properties, buyers were waiving appraisal, loan and inspection contingencies to make their offers more attractive to sellers. That meant that buyers were prepared to risk their deposit (3% of the purchase price) if they couldn’t get their loan or couldn’t cover an appraised value shortfall. And they worked around having inspections during escrow, either by relying on seller reports, having pre-inspections or having none at all. Continue Reading

First-Time and Luxury Home Buyers Embrace “Permanent” TICs

Once seen as a stepping stone to condo ownership, tenancy-in-common (TIC) interests have become widely acceptable to San Francisco home buyers as “permanent” TICs. But it’s not just the first-time home buyers who are getting into the TIC game. Luxury buyers are also jumping in.

The fact that condo conversion probably won’t be a future option for TIC owners in buildings with three or more units doesn’t seem to be slowing TIC sales. Continue Reading

Summer Market Wraps Up, Sets Tone for the Fall

It was a summer of withdrawn listings, buyers flocking to single-family homes and rising one-bedroom prices. Though San Francisco real estate was a little slower this summer, there were a number of takeaways that I think will set the tone for the busy Fall season:

Prices remained strong for houses and condos. The average price for a house in the June-August timeframe was $1,695,454, and around $1,200,000 for condos.

Houses were hot. If you had a house to sell in San Francisco this summer, chances are you did pretty well. Almost one quarter of all houses sold this summer changed hands for more than 20% over the list price, and 17% of all houses sold were paid for in cash. I’m aware of at least a dozen houses that ended up getting 25+ offers in neighborhoods like Bernal Heights, Glen Park, and other popular areas. Continue Reading

Just Sold: Little Hollywood House

Just Sold: Little Hollywood House

We close today on 230 Tocoloma, one of the cutest and most unique homes I’ve ever sold. We prepped the home to the nines, including a full interior paint job, landscaping, floor refinishing, and staging. Then we listed competitively for $769,000. Continue Reading

Prices, Volume Jump in Q2 2016

The San Francisco market saw a boost in average prices and volume in the second quarter, particularly when it came to single-family homes.

It was another busy Spring for single-family homes, as volume jumped up an astonishing 76% over the first quarter. The average price was $1,736,534, up 3.5% from the previous quarter. And buyers overbid an average of nine percent, proving that houses in the city are still in high demand. Continue Reading

Just Sold: 1818 Broadway #306

Just Sold: 1818 Broadway #306

My Pacific Heights condo listing at 1818 Broadway #306 has officially closed. Listed for $949,000, the sale price was $1,050,000.

We had lots of interest in this unit due to the view and overall presentation. The buyer was able to get a 30-year fixed loan through First Republic, despite the high rental ratio in the building.

If you’re thinking about putting your own condo on the market in the next few months, please contact me at ebermingham@zephyrsf.com / 415.823.4656. I’d be happy to strategize with you on what it will take to fetch top dollar, as well as give you a realistic value range and recommended list price.

Get in touch:

Eileen Bermingham

Zephyr Real Estate

415.823.4656

ebermingham@zephyrsf.com

BRE# 01352627

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