August 22, 2008

It’s Friday, So Insert Cheeky Comment Here (943 Church Street #B)

943 Church Street #B: Living

Floor to ceiling windows especially with views? Yes please.

943 Church Street #B: Bedroom

And in the bedroom too? Double yes (and insert cheeky comment here).

∙ Listing: 943 Church Street #B (3/3) - $2,395,000 [943churchpenthouse.com] [MLS]

First Published: August 22, 2008 5:30 AM

Comments from "Plugged In" Readers

(Insert chopped pillow comment here.)

Posted by: anon at August 22, 2008 6:52 AM

Nice views and floor to ceiling windows are great... but in the bedroom? we are talking serious window treatments unless you dont mind sleeping in the light.

Posted by: anon2 at August 22, 2008 7:01 AM

@anon2:

Well, not just sleeping...

Posted by: Foolio at August 22, 2008 8:13 AM

I'm an early riser, so wouldn't mind the windows. I love this place. I can't afford it so I'll just look around!

the pictures are very artistic, but some of them I couldn't figure out what was going on... a little too artistic for my taste. but this beats the heck out of all those MLS listings where the pics are taken with a cell phone camera.

they also need some work on their website. very slow to load (at least for me) and I couldn't find pics on the website... or a floor plan.

Posted by: ex SF-er at August 22, 2008 8:25 AM

The area is fantastic and the home looks great. $$ a bit high...

Posted by: Michael L. at August 22, 2008 8:32 AM

i remember when the place was for sale a few years back.

The previous owner had lived in the house for decades and i think had died in the house. Her things were strewn everywhere and the RE agent had not even bothered to remove her wheel chair and walker from the living room.

I think the selling agent was Julie Lee, who recently pled guilty to fraud of siphoning funds to then Sec of State, Kevin Shelley.

Anyway, I really like this area Near Dolores Park. Only negative is the J church

Given i think they spent $1.1MM to $1.3MM to buy the SFH and #A is already in escrow, how well do you think the contractors/sellers will do here? How much does it cost to gut a SFH and convert it to condos with this level on construction?

Posted by: sky at August 22, 2008 8:44 AM

Interesting. The Google Maps link on the web site shows (when you zoom in quite a bit) that the J-Church tracks boarder the opposite side of the fence.

If the owners take the J-Church, they could always turn the trip into a action movie sequence by standing on the fence and jumping onto the train's roof as it passes by...

Posted by: Can't think of cool name at August 22, 2008 9:04 AM

"$$ a bit high.."

You're out of your mind. I'll be amazed if it lasts through the weekend.

Posted by: tipster at August 22, 2008 9:14 AM

So go forth all ye to the MLS and put in that price as what you can pay and look at what your options are in SF. That is a buttload of cash for a condo on Dolores. On the other hand, if you are a drum circle fan, and SF Mime Troup fan, then the gentle noises from the park wafting into your bedroom all weekend long will be a pleasure to the senses.

Posted by: Um, hmmm. at August 22, 2008 9:22 AM

@tipster -- it might last thru the weekend, because lots of folks are leaving for Burning Man today :)

I wish I could think of a appropriate chopped pillow quip, but I can't :(

Love those rugs, BTW.

Posted by: dub dub at August 22, 2008 9:24 AM

From memory, this place is slight over the hill from Dolores Park on the downslope of Church towards 24th street.

This means you do not get as much of the Dolores Park "riff-raff" and noises, which is why I like the location. However, the J church is sitting right off your backyard, which is a negative.

I would think the windows would have to be double paned, as you can probably hear the J rumbling down the tracks.

Posted by: sky at August 22, 2008 9:32 AM

I'm too in love with that fireplace wall to even worry about everyone seeing me in my bedroom.

Posted by: kthnxybe at August 22, 2008 9:57 AM

having too much light is a pretty luxurious problem. and easily solved.

Posted by: amused at August 22, 2008 10:25 AM

Looks like the "investment" will work out for the seller, but the person in question doesn't need money.

Anyone know who staged this place?

Posted by: exuberant at August 22, 2008 10:32 AM

@amused
...by very expensive (probably automated) curtains no doubt. Add another 120K in window furnishings to the price tag. And if they didn't use double paned windows, add a heck of lot more to get rid of the sound of the jchurch.

Don't get me wrong, I think the place is beautiful, but it was also built by a developer. And sometimes developers go for looks at the expense of functionality.

Posted by: anon2 at August 22, 2008 10:33 AM

120K for the automated shades= No way.

Double pain, insulated windows=100% chance. They may be a developer but they got permits and passed the Title 24.

Posted by: sparky at August 22, 2008 10:39 AM

this place has no need for automated shades. you can get appropriately modern roller shades for the whole place for far less than $10K, installed.

$120K? really? that's funny.

Posted by: amused at August 22, 2008 10:56 AM

It was staged by Green Couch

Posted by: sarah at August 22, 2008 11:02 AM

@amused.

My guess is you have never installed automatic curtains in your home. I have, covering much less window... These folks will be purchasing a condo in noe/castro for 2.4 million dollars. They probably won't be finishing off their trophy condo with $5 temporary white shades from home depot (which i have also installed in the past as well :) )

Posted by: anon2 at August 22, 2008 11:26 AM

Looking at it again though, I just threw out a number. 120k really is too high unless they really overspent and did the whole house. My condo cost 75k for three rooms and much less window- my guess is 50-60K for the bedroom if you did that alone, with a decent motor, blackout shade and decoration shade. I've seen homes done for 150-200k (but the homes were in the 4-5 mil price bracket).

Posted by: anon2 at August 22, 2008 11:38 AM

I'm not impressed. At all.

2.3 for a front-row to the J-Church ain't good. And there's nothing particularly singular or inspired about the place.

I love the fact that a second story condo is now a "penthouse".

And maybe I'm in a snotty mood, but Green Couch is getting tired. Though I agree that the rugs are v. nice.

It'll not only last through the weekend, it'll be around for a while.

Posted by: inthemarket at August 22, 2008 11:56 AM

Nice house, annoying website.

Posted by: Jake at August 22, 2008 11:58 AM

unless you're geriatric or have hard to access windows, motorized shades are stupid. and motorized shades cost 4X+ what standard shades do.

Posted by: amused at August 22, 2008 1:25 PM

Amused - I can see the advantage of automated shades even for able bodied youngsters. It would be great to have a single button that you could push that would open/close all of the shades in the room. One second vs. a couple minutes of manual adjustment.

Still, I couldn't see paying $120K to outfit a house with autoshades. That's more expensive than top of the line windows.

Posted by: The Milkshake of Despair at August 22, 2008 1:42 PM

that bed in the pic looks interesting...anybody may be able to tell me where they got this bed and side table next to the bed. thanks.

Posted by: zz at August 22, 2008 2:02 PM

of course I can see the advantage in automated shades, but it's a stupid use of $120K. now, I've got $120K+ worth of audiovisual gear... so it's not about outlay, per se. it's about value.

Posted by: amused at August 22, 2008 2:18 PM

anon2, you got hosed on that price.

Posted by: sparky at August 22, 2008 2:32 PM

The downstairs unit went into escrow in early August, after about two weeks on the market. It's slightly larger, has the backyard instead of decks.

Asking price was $2,195,000. Also a duplex (two levels). Nice location, away from Dolores Park, facing Hill Street.

Posted by: Rocco at August 22, 2008 2:37 PM

then so did everyone else in my building. and sparky, unless you have your interior design lisence, your word aint much.

Posted by: anon2 at August 22, 2008 2:57 PM

Regarding that bed, or that sort of bed design. I have wondered if there was a correlation between that sort of hard-edged projecting base and late night emergency room visits with broken toes, metatarsals and sprained ankles.

Posted by: redseca2 at August 22, 2008 3:04 PM

anon2, or maybe I'm the contractor and it's in my bid. So it's not my design but I know the price.

Posted by: sparky at August 22, 2008 3:06 PM

@anon2: don't waste your time with sparky, similar budget for my shades but included installation. without knowing the specs sparky is talking out of his a$$.

Posted by: nonanon at August 22, 2008 3:10 PM

anon2, I'm with sparky here.

We did the entire top floor on our house with the high end "manual" shades from Hunter Douglass. You could spend more by using expensive fabric/material, and yeah the motor would cost you 4X.

Overall we had 13 large windows (not floor to ceiling) done for $4K by http://www.nationalblinds.net/

Sparky knows his stuff, but I do think he tends to moderately underestimate (he is a contractor after all) and probably have access to prices, we humans can't.

Having said that 120K or 75K is purely a rip off, and yeah some interior designers are capable of spending any budget. (e.g. http://sfluxe.com/2008/05/19/inside-gs-infinity-penthouse/)

We are using an honest/reasonable designer and bought a lot of custom stuff from the design center for a fraction what *G* has spent.

Posted by: someone at August 22, 2008 3:19 PM

sparky--

this automatic shade thread has gotten pretty off topic but anyway... I'm just wondering if you are an interior designer or just an armchair critic? Not that it matters, but I said my place has 75K worth of automated shades, not that I purchased them. When I was about to buy, I was deciding between a unit in the building that had them, and one that did not. I checked with a few folks about how much it would cost to install(incl. an interior designer). I was totally shocked, so I just went with the apt that already had them.

Maybe they wont install anything at all. Who knows. But doing anything nicely is going to be $$.

regarding your other comment:


"Double pain, insulated windows=100% chance. They may be a developer but they got permits and passed the Title 24." Ok, maybe double paned, but I mean quality sound proofed windows that will keep out the jchurch noise. If just being a new building insured that you got high quality windows that keeps the noise out, check out the brand new condos at 1280 Church St (mls #344026) in Noe. When the jchurch passes, it is incredibly loud.

Now, this developer may have put in better windows- certainly other aspects of the condo are very nice! But we wouldn't know without asking the agent.

Posted by: anon2 at August 22, 2008 3:32 PM

anon2,
I am with you on sound proof. I was merely replying to dual paned insulated.

I am not an interior designer, I'm a contractor. If you are going through an interior designer then that's where the money went. I just ordered some, spec.'d by the architect for a homeowner project I am working on. Mechoshade. Fashion Drapery is the local rep.

[Editor’s Note: An interesting Friday tangent, but now back to 943 Church (or even the bed)…]

Posted by: sparky at August 22, 2008 3:43 PM

Great views. Of Bernal Heights. Yuk.

Dog's missing.

Posted by: anon at August 22, 2008 3:59 PM

"Great views. Of Bernal Heights. Yuk."

Agreed. I have a friend who bought a similar unit on Green Street in Cow Hollow who has amazing views of Alcatraz, Angel Island and the Golden Gate bridge for about the price of this listing.

I will never understand the current love affair with Noe Valley. It was a neighborhood of average dull affordable homes, and now has been twisted into THE place to live in the city. I still don't think of Noe Valley as a neighborhood you would want to wow your out of town friends with. The only way to make relatives jaws drop while touring them in Noe is to tell them what the little stick houses sell for.

Nice staging however.

Posted by: anon2 at August 22, 2008 4:39 PM

I may be the only one here who says this, but I hate those types of beds for 2 reasons

1) they are so low to the ground. I hate getting on my hands/knees to lay DOWN on a bed. (I also hate climbing up into a bed). It reminds me of the futon craze of 15-20 years ago. I like my bed waist high.

2) when you roll out of bed you hit that darn wooden ledge. I dislike that as well

3) ankles and shins. talk about getting hurt

4) under no circumstances should you have kids under the age of 13 with a bed like that. talk about head injury!

I had the misfortune of staying in a beautiful house with a bed like that. It looked great and also had integrated lightstands and lights even! but I was readdy to jettison it by the 3rd day.

Posted by: ex SF-er at August 22, 2008 4:46 PM

OK, using ex SF-er's arithmetic I'll add 1/2 more reason to dislike that sort of bed : you'll trip on that ledge for the first few weeks until you become accustomed to the odd toe level geometry. Eyes focus on the mattress as you approach but what's this ? ... the toes encounter an unmovable obstacle. Thank God there's a soft mattress to break the fall !

No direct experience with a bed like this but I have worked in a kitchen with this "inverted toe cavity" design and felt lucky to not have tripped and flinged a hot pot of pasta on anyone.

Posted by: The Milkshake of Despair at August 22, 2008 5:49 PM

this porn has got to stop. this home is amazing. its always nice to look at the menu but it sucks you cant order off it... this will be gone with a quickness.

Posted by: Ryan at August 22, 2008 6:49 PM

"OK, using ex SF-er's arithmetic I'll add 1/2 more reason to dislike that sort of bed"

ROFL!!!!

Posted by: ex SF-er at August 23, 2008 2:10 AM

Before I would make an offer I would insist that all of the excellent staging be removed. (Or just buy it with the furniture) Who does Stiewe's staging? The stagers are excellent in taking, as an example, a very ordinary master bedroom and making it feel unique. Payton Stiewe's listings are always very well presented and loaded with chopped pillows.

Posted by: anon94123 at August 23, 2008 4:18 AM

I will never understand the current love affair with Noe Valley

It is the best neighborhood in The City to raise children, especially if you don't want to live in the fog. It is also close to both Downtown and Silicon Valley job centers.

I still think that prices are kind of inflated here though, somehow NV has become the San Francisco poster child. I can buy a very nice Pac Heights condo with GG bridge views for the same price per square foot as a detached SFH here and that seems out of whack to me.

Posted by: NoeValleyJim at August 23, 2008 11:00 AM

Outside of Presidio Heights and Russian Hill, is "real" Noe Valley the most expensive psf residential area of the city? It is a fantastic neighborhood, but truly very VERY expensive. Some of these psf costs are now in the same league as Beverly Hills and Gold Coast Chicago prices.

Posted by: anoncensorious at August 23, 2008 11:29 AM

what areas command the highest price per square ft in sf?

Pac Heights? Marina? Russian Hill? Noe (central)?

Posted by: Nicole at August 23, 2008 2:09 PM

Outside of Presidio Heights and Russian Hill, is "real" Noe Valley the most expensive psf residential area of the city?

No, I don't think so. Comparing apples to apples: SFH to SFH or Condo to Condo, most of District 2 is more, so is Russian Hill, Telegraph Hill and Seacliff. Laurel Heights, Lake and The Marina are all about the same price as Noe Valle, which seems about right to me. I would rather be here than in The Marina, though they are pretty comparable neighborhoods.

Posted by: NoeValleyJim at August 23, 2008 4:55 PM

@ exuberant

"Looks like the "investment" will work out for the seller, but the person in question doesn't need money."

Family money from Mom and Dad might seem like a good thing on the surface..... but those of us who make it on our own have a different sense of appreciation for what we have....

Posted by: i earned my own at August 24, 2008 7:57 AM

To those who made comments about the J-Church line: So much for a transit-friendly San Francisco.

Posted by: Casual Observer at August 24, 2008 8:01 AM

ok, i'll go there too - born with a silver d%*#@ up their a#*, but they sure as hell built a beautiful house!!

Posted by: RAMBO at August 24, 2008 9:20 AM

I love the J-Church. I really love the fact that it is a half block away and not right in my back yard, if you know what I mean.

Posted by: NoeValleyJim at August 24, 2008 10:02 AM

Oops, did I say District 2? I meant to say District 7, you know Pac Heights, Cow Hollow, Presidio Heights and The Marina.

Posted by: NoeValleyJim at August 24, 2008 11:56 AM

The way the chopped pillows are balanced on the bed is what I call A+ staging. In fact the master bedroom has an amazing seven chopped pillows alone! Decades from now, the chopped pillow could be a sign of our irrational exuberance with presenting homes as staged product instead of as places to live, and perhaps raise a family with CHILDREN. ( Will the pillow chop be taught in Noe Valley preschools? )

Still, this is a very attractive property which presents a comfortable version of "contemporary" design that should be very attractive, even in this market.

Posted by: chopchop at August 24, 2008 5:42 PM

To NoeValleyJim:

We know exactly what you mean. That is why your concerns about the J-Church line are known as Not In My Back Yard-ism or NIMBYism. How appropriate. We really need more of your kind of people in the world.

Posted by: Casual Observer at August 24, 2008 9:52 PM

Hahaha, very funny and deserved I guess. But I still wouldn't buy a house with the J-Church rolling through the backyard, would you?

Posted by: NoeValleyJim at August 25, 2008 12:01 AM

I stopped by the open house yesterday and was not impressed. Low ceilings, little of architectural interest, a "deck" off the master bedroom that's too narrow. The TICs at 1278-82 Church and the "View" condos at 4121 Cesar Chavez are better products.

Posted by: cse at August 25, 2008 7:52 AM

1278-82 Church Street, overpriced and no views, that will take at least 10 years to condo-convert. 4121 Cesar Chavez Street, fantastic views, great space, low bed-room count, and with an apartment building feel. Not certain if they are better products than different products.

Posted by: An Honest Real Estate Broker at August 25, 2008 8:02 AM

I would buy any of those homes on Church Street with close access to the J-Church line. If any were on the market that I could afford. Seriously, any decent, affordable home near public transportation and great walk-able shops would be what I (and many San Franciscans) want.

Posted by: Casual Observer at August 25, 2008 8:06 AM

Casual Observor,

I don't want to put words in anybody's mouth. But usually property is discounted somewhat when it is right next to a rail line, whether light rail or what have you. This is pushing the envelope. That's my reading on NVJ's point anyway.

Posted by: fluj at August 25, 2008 9:40 AM

Have you checked out Mission Terrace CO? Lots of nice stuff there, near Balboa Park BART and Muni lines and within walking distance of Glen Park village. The neighborhood is definitely getting fixed up, as well, as you can see by just driving around and looking at all the homes.

You probably don't want to be too close to Balboa High, but even that would not be so bad. If I was looking for a starter home, that is where I would be shopping today. Still not really cheap, though.

Posted by: NoeValleyJim at August 25, 2008 9:57 AM

Geez, if everything near a railway should be discounted, then all the cookie cutter condos near One Rincon and Berry Street should be selling like hot cakes.

Posted by: Befuddled at August 25, 2008 10:35 AM

Should be discounted = selling like hotcakes ?

Posted by: fluj at August 25, 2008 10:53 AM

I agree with "Honest R-E Broker" that 4121 Cesar Chavez and 1278-82 Church are "different products." (But the top floor at 1282 Church does have a great view . . . .) The latter may also be overpriced for TICs (can anyone think of a plausible comp?). I only wanted to point out that this property lacks architectural interest & design quality (to say nothing of ceiling height)commensurate with its stratospheric pricing.

The finishes are rather dull ("quotidian fancy"); the central stairway, which should be a signature element, is dark and boring; the patio off the master BR is too narrow; the window in the master bath is too high (you should be able to look out while sitting in the tub); and the kitchen is not aesthetically integrated with the rest of the living/dining space.

That said, credit is due for the fireplace design & tiling.

Posted by: cse at August 25, 2008 12:09 PM

@Casual Observer-

I think you are missing the point. Most people are fans of public transportation. Just like most people are fans of firehouses. But if I were to buy a property next to a firehouse, I would expect a discount built into the price of the property that reflects this fact.

Posted by: Nicole at August 26, 2008 4:33 PM

The list price for 943 Church Street #B has just been reduced $197,000. Now asking $2,198,000.

Posted by: SocketSite at September 19, 2008 12:18 PM

While the list price on 943 #B has been reduced (see comment above), the lower unit 943 #A has fallen out of contract and is once again available at $1,995,000.

Posted by: SocketSite at October 8, 2008 1:02 PM

Great timing to sell these over-priced "high end" condos. Firstly, they're in the wrong neighborhood; secondly, there's too many unneeded "accessories;" thirdly, I'm not sure everything is proper. What about the big pipes on the roof next door. Nice try with the obscure screen or whatever that is. How about privacy? The thing abuts each side and everybody on either side is right in your face.
For a lot less I can get a lot more. It's just a lot of icing on a cheap cake....

Posted by: Leon Morris at October 11, 2008 8:03 PM

The plant screen is hysterical! Nice placing in front of the large exhaust pipes, so why put a window there at all? If you want an all glass condo, there are plenty available throughout the city right now without exhaust stacks blocking your "million dollar view".

Posted by: anonconfused at October 12, 2008 5:55 AM

The list price for 943 Church Street #B has just been reduced another $245,000. Now asking $1,950,000.

Posted by: SocketSite at October 13, 2008 1:10 PM

and unit A hasa been reduced to 1.7...

ouch. The listing states that "Seller willing to carry 2nd mtg!". Wonder if the first offer fell out of contract because of financing issues.

Posted by: Nicole at October 15, 2008 1:39 AM

Vendor financing, never a good sign.

A blast from the past to start your day, wisdom from the Bank Panic of the 1870's

http://lcweb2.loc.gov/cgi-bin/query/i?pp/PPALL:@field(NUMBER+@band(cph+3a04576))

http://lcweb2.loc.gov/cgi-bin/query/i?pp/PPALL:@field(NUMBER+@band(cph+3a04580))

Posted by: diemos at October 15, 2008 5:51 AM

seller financing is a good idea in this market imo.
you collect the coupon or you get your local re back to sell again. easier than redeeming those lehman notes, eh?

Posted by: paco at October 15, 2008 7:22 AM

Yes. But only if you're providing a first loan. A second in this market has a high probability of being a total loss.

Posted by: diemos at October 15, 2008 7:40 AM

i agree, though it depends on how big the down payment is.

imo its a good time to be getting into banking.

Posted by: paco at October 15, 2008 8:11 AM

If a buyer had enough to put a significant down payment on the place, he wouldn't need the seller-financed second mortgage.

This is not a bad move for the seller. If he drops the price by another 10%, there still will be no buyers because so few can come up with the 20-25% down needed even for the new selling price. So the place does not sell at all. But there is a larger pool of potential buyers at 10-15% down. If the seller carries the second, he is really assuming that the note won't get paid, but he doesn't care because he still gets the 90% purchase price, which is above market in a rapidly declining market. The seller will never foreclose because prices are falling and the second would get wiped out, so payment on the second is really completely voluntary. And if the buyer does pay on the second loan, that is all gravy to the seller. But I agree with diemos that this is a desperate measure and yet another sign that prices continue to fall rapidly.

Posted by: Trip at October 15, 2008 8:31 AM

P.T. Barnum: "There's a sucker born every minute."


Posted by: Sally Fettliptz at October 29, 2008 12:30 PM

The listing for 943 Church Street #B has been withdrawn from the MLS without selling after 110 days on the market.

Posted by: SocketSite at December 9, 2008 3:58 PM

These are back on the market with a new realtor for $1.695 and $1.895 (million). I'd guess they are newly staged as well.

Posted by: RenterAgain at January 4, 2009 7:51 PM

Both of these just got cut again, by $100K each. Now $1.795M and $1.595M. These have now been cut ~25% since their initial listings.

http://www.redfin.com/CA/San-Francisco/943-Church-St-94114/unit-1/home/18471541

http://www.redfin.com/CA/San-Francisco/943-Church-St-94114/unit-2/home/18471542

Posted by: LMRiM at February 6, 2009 5:21 AM

Textbook example of chasing the market down going on with these units.

Posted by: Rillion at February 6, 2009 8:25 AM

Sort of? Rillion, the idea of a ~2M Noe condo was laughable even five years ago.

Posted by: anonn at February 6, 2009 9:24 AM

And the idea sounds like it's still laughable.

At least one condo sold for north of $1M at about the same $sf as these are now asking nine years ago (see sales history):

http://www.redfin.com/CA/San-Francisco/525-27th-St-94131/unit-2/home/1986968

Posted by: LMRiM at February 6, 2009 9:38 AM

Not sure what your post has to do with the price of fish ? I say ~2. You say 1+ ????

Posted by: anonn at February 6, 2009 9:46 AM

anonn - What did you find wrong with my comment? Sure their original asking price was too high, but as market has come down they have lowered their too high asking price, then lowered it again, soon they will lower it again. That's called chasing the market down.

Posted by: Rillion at February 6, 2009 11:36 AM

I didn't find anything wrong per se with your sentiment. Just the term "chasing the market." More like "chasing its market." You can probably count the number of ~2M sales for condos ever sold in Noe on one hand. I'm saying 2006, 2007, peak markets. There was no such market. These people started out too high. That's all.

Posted by: anonn at February 6, 2009 11:57 AM

well either chasing "the" market down or chasing "a" market, they keep cutting a little, waiting, cutting a little, etc. It hasn't been a very successful strategy so far.

Posted by: Rillion at February 6, 2009 1:32 PM

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