250 Clara Street #13
Perhaps it’s not a perfect apple (“may be larger than tax record shows due to remodel by owner”), but 250 Clara Street #13, a District 9 loft, was just listed for $588,000. Top floor, lots of light, and apparently “pure energy.”
Purchased for $550,000 in December of 2004 and now advertising “priced to sell” (twice).
∙ Listing: 250 Clara Street #13 (1/1.5) – $588,000 [MLS]

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Comments from “Plugged-In” Readers

  1. Posted by scurvy

    Getting back to 2005 prices here…..still waiting for 2003 prices when people knew that 6th St. was well, 6th St. and priced to reflect that fact.

  2. Posted by Foolio

    Looks more like it is priced to sit.

  3. Posted by Michael

    I’ve never gotten this paint-sampler look. I count at least seven different colors in this one shot.

  4. Posted by San FronziScheme

    Getting back to 2005 prices here…..still waiting for 2003 prices when people knew that 6th St. was well, 6th St. and priced to reflect that fact.
    From the MLS listing:
    “Run… Don’t walk”
    They’ve got it right. Rollerblades work pretty well too in case you have to outrun your “friendly neighbors”.

  5. Posted by jk

    6th street plus an alley … oh my!

  6. Posted by amused

    It’s not a loft.
    It’s a condo with a mezzanine and a curious lack of walls.

  7. Posted by claraguy

    I live on Clara closer to 5th street (since 2003). Agree that this is in line with 2005 prices for the area. We still get some sordid types strolling through, but the area is much cleaner and much safer than it was just 3-4 years ago, with a number of housing/retail projects set to start up in the next 1-2 years. Changing for the better – slowly, but noticeable progress.

  8. Posted by davesf

    How is it that people are still deluding themselves that this area is “changing for the better” when there’s still a LOT of work to be done. On the surface and from people unfamiliar with that area, it is still nothin short of astounding to see so many residential buildings/lofts/condos built and no “clean up” action taken by the city. It still reeks of urine in most of the pockets around that area and the “characters” that occupy the streets and alleys are nothing short of “scary” to people who can afford to purchase and live there.
    Delusions aside, that is a good price for the property itself but I think at least 2 or 3 blocks over to the Northeast would have been better.

  9. Posted by fluj

    It is changing tho. The government building, the galleries, more nightclubs, etc, five years ago it was quite different. It won’t completely change unti it ceases being where the TL spills out onto a corridor lined with residential hotels.

  10. Posted by Christopher Carrington

    Actually, this neighborhood is just fine the way it is. The “scary” (black, is that what you mean Dave?) people are poor, and in the main, minding their own business and trying to scratch out a living. Many of them are war vets, many are addicted to various substances, many are former sex offenders and most of them live here because there is no where else for them. The fact that petty bourgeois blow hards don’t like them and have nothing better to do than scream about that fact on blogs changes nothing. 6th Street will always be with us and those who chose to live nearby, as I do, are, or should be, fully aware of this reality.
    And blaming the city of San Francisco for urban poverty is just plain stupid. It’s the kind of dimwitted idiocy I would expect from central valley red necks, but mostly annoying and amusing when one has to endure it from San Franciscans, most of whom are sensible enough to come to terms with the presence of poor people.

  11. Posted by Boo

    @Carrington – easy there. You went out and called DaveSF a racist. Scary most likely meant scary like crazy talking, urine smelling, in your face homeless person. There are plenty of them, not the majority, but they are there. I’m not afraid of them personally, but I don’t want them near my fiance if I’m not with her. Know what I mean? I’m all about humanizing the homeless issue and realizing they need help and that some are there because our health care and social services suck but jeeze buddy, easy on throwing the race card at DaveSF.
    Oh, and you’re not really comming off that enlightened when you claim all central valley folks are red necks. Pretty weak. And certainly not all SF residents are sensible by any means.
    Wrong site for this discussion anyway. Sorry for the digression but Christopher was out of line IMHO.
    Oh, and I’m a soon to be Esprit Park resident so I’m tolerant in that regard.

  12. Posted by San FronziScheme

    many are former sex offenders
    OoooKaaayyy. I feel so much more compassionate and forgiving now that I have this small piece of information.

  13. Posted by Mark D.

    Re “It’s not a loft. It’s a condo with a mezzanine and a curious lack of walls.”
    Isn’t this precisely what passes for a “loft” in SF?

  14. Posted by Boo

    Mark – didn’t the name “amused” give you a hint that perhaps he/she has a sense of humor?

  15. Posted by Christopher Carrington

    Boo & SanFronzi
    I believe it was DaveSF who got out of bounds with his ill-chosen use of “delusional” as well as his boorish attack on the city for it’s inability to remove poverty from our midst. Perhaps, Dave has rose above the racism that exists in most of us and his characterizations of the 6th Street neighborhood as “scary” really only refers to people high on meth or suffering from paranoia. My intuition, and 25 years of research and teaching about class, race, sexuality, and urban life in SF, well, it simply led me to ask if any part of “scary” includes race.
    And regarding the “small piece” of info on sex offenders that some of the newbies to SF don’t yet quite grasp. Please remind yourself that these folks who have done their time for various sex crimes, and upon release, and due to a host of sex-offender residency laws, must live in the tenderloin and along 6th Street, because they CANNOT live in countless other places. Your lack of compassion, no doubt born of ignorance and fear, more than knowledge and wisdom, suggests to me that you are hanging out in the wrong forum. Perhaps, you might try AM radio talk shows or perhaps Fox News…those are the places where the mean-spirited, disconnected, and fear-ridden (I must protect my fiance from the 6th street horde!)find the true compatriots.

  16. Posted by Mark D.

    “Mark – didn’t the name “amused” give you a hint that perhaps he/she has a sense of humor?”
    Good point. The joke is on me then.

  17. Posted by Glad I don't have to take his class.

    Goodness gracious. 6th St is not nice at all and these problems cannot be attributed to every SF snob. Christopher’s comments seem so mean spirited and the name calling is out of line. Sorry Editor for being off topic. The condo looks nice, but price is too high IMO.

  18. Posted by luvinmissionbay

    WOW! Definitely agree with Boo on this one. I’d love to hear a response from Carrington (or at least an apology)?

  19. Posted by San FronziScheme

    Christopher, what a patronizing piece of work you are.
    Hey guess what? I have lived in and owned many places in buildings plagued by prostitution, squatters, drugs and all those nice things. Yeah, call me a slumlord or a AM radio loonie (I never listen to AM) or whatever makes you feel good about yourself. But I’ve always left the places better than when I found them and I charged 20% under market because I could (cheap buys) and because I wanted peace of mind from my renters. And I believe that a person who gets a favor often gives it back and they did.
    What I found out is that the more compassionate the locals/authorities, the more people will step on your tows. Help people who want want to be helped and can better themselves with what you give them, let the others move somewhere else. The SF homeless situation is the product of too much compassion and leniency, nobody can deny that.

  20. Posted by Mark

    “My intuition, and 25 years of research and teaching about class, race, sexuality, and urban life in SF, well, it simply led me to ask if any part of “scary” includes race.”
    It takes a special kind of ivory tower perspective to look right past the derelict buildings, unkempt streets, open drug use, rampant homelessness, and anti-social behavior–all this during the quieter daylight hours–to concentrate on possible latent ethnic insensitivity. As a participant in the pickup BB games at the gym on 6th and Howard, I have noted the relief that I feel when I enter that enclave of “people of color” and leave behind the relative insanity of the street outside. Christopher, don’t embarrass yourself by taking any weapon to hand in defense of what in any other city would be condemned as neighborhood deterioration pure and simple.
    I am a “newbie” in SF. I moved here from Chicago’s gritty (and minority) South Side. During my 7 years there I had none of the drug-pusher/aggressive pan-handler/people sitting on my car even when I’m trying to move it-type incidents like I’ve had on 6th Street. To call it scary is not insensitive–just objective truth. I wouldn’t let my wife walk around by herself down there, either.
    Yes, the condition of many on the streets is tragic and should shame the rest of us. But that problem must be separated from the obvious fact that the neighborhood is shady to the point of intimidating, no matter how worldly and sensitive one is.
    Oh, and I’m not paying $600K for a 1bdrm there, either. Man, I’ll head back to Kenwood in Chicago and pick up a whole greystone on the lake before I do that–a better class of homeless and delinquent in that neighborhood.

  21. Posted by DaveSF

    I’m not being racist. I’m a minority myself so why should I even play the race card into my observations and feelings about the area and what I think of values of housing within this area?
    I will say that living in Outer Richmond in a very meager 1 BR/1 BA apartment, being out of the way of all the “seedy” and “scary” elements, I’m not fearful to walk out in the late hours of the night in my neighborhood. However, I would not venture out to 6th St. much and neither would a lot of other people because of the EXISTENCE (this is fact) of “scary” elements. Drug addicts, sex offenders, and former criminal offenders being here because they have nowhere else to go does NOT take away the fact that this area is not exactly the safe place for the majority of law-abiding citizens.
    If you look at the crime statistics reports here (http://www.sfgov.org/site/police_index.asp?id=23813) and do a search on the last 90 days for the area, it has 20 times more crime incidents than my neighborhood. Even the projects next to Gleneagles golf course in Bayview district has been relatively low compared to the vicinity around 6th and Clara. These are statistics from SFPD and reported incidents and facts do not lie.
    The city of San Francisco does not include only the government and law enforcement and social services, it is ALL OF US who live in this city. I’ve participated in many Habitat for Humanity events to clean up areas in this city like picking up trash from public parks and spaces in neighborhoods a lot rougher than where this loft is and it is no small effort. It is also not in San Franciscans’ best interests to turn a blind eye to what goes on, but to take action to improve the situation. Just sitting back and accepting the fact that these “scary” elements exist in this neighborhood is not enough.
    I apologize that I’m getting on my soapbox but it IS delusion if you think things are going to magically change without any active participation from those that live in this neighborhood.
    No offense taken. I’ve been used to being accused most of my life but still continue to believe in positive change of the city of San Francisco and will do my little bit to help whenever I can. I love this city too much to not take action.

  22. Posted by Christopher Carrington

    There will be no apologies. The sheer intensity of the posts, as well as the over-wrought descriptions of life in my neighborhood suggest this conversation is not really about this neighborhood. What is it that stirs the passions like this? Perhaps, some of you bought real estate in the neighborhood with rather unrealistic expectations about the course of gentrification? You can’t believe that many San Franciscans don’t share your hysteria about poor people, sex work and “open drug use”? If this stuff is really so upsetting, you really should reconsider buying in this neighborhood.

  23. Posted by spencer

    “It’s the kind of dimwitted idiocy I would expect from central valley red necks”
    Christopher, who has shown bigotry here? in my opinion, only you you were totally out of line with the racist comment. what does that even have to do with homeless filled, urine soaked streets full of trash ?

  24. Posted by spencer

    “You can’t believe that many San Franciscans don’t share your hysteria about poor people, sex work and “open drug use”? If this stuff is really so upsetting, you really should reconsider buying in this neighborhood. ”
    or alternatively, you could try to change it for the better

  25. Posted by pop daddy

    I live in this neighborhood in fact on this street. What I can say is that there is a real sense of community here and all of us talk and keep the street clean. It’s amazing what can be accomplished by just talking to your neighbors. As for the “scary people” there are none, except, for the people on this website.

  26. Posted by claraguy

    Pretty entertaining… let me get this straight… I actually live on the street. I post with actual feedback, having lived here for 5 years, and I get called delusional by someone who then goes on a rant with the implication that the people in the neighborhood (including myself, I must surmise) must get off their butts and mimic the poster’s actions and concern before anything good will ever have a chance of starting to happen years in the future. I got a chuckle out of that one. And you know me from where? Suffice it to say that the reason the street and immediate area has indeed improved is because the people that live here do actively work to improve it on a daily basis.

  27. “homeless filled, urine soaked streets full of trash”. This is sheer hyperbole Spencer. It bears no resemblance to the reality of life here; rather it’s some bourgeois fantasy of what some people would like this neighborhood to become.

  28. Posted by San FronziScheme

    Yeah, the pot is calling the kettle black there.
    Nobody was talking about race until the christopher guy showed up.
    I’m crossing 6th street all the time, sometimes during the night. There are Latino, Blacks, Asian, White transients. Misery is color-blind.

  29. Posted by Michael L

    Just once it would be nice to see –
    Priced Not To Sell.
    Its like we eat glue – what innovation –
    Priced To Sell
    Just present some true value in the pricing and stop assuming we eat paste and jump with glee @ such innovative verbage – Priced To Sell.
    I love it…

  30. Posted by diemos

    “Priced Not To Sell.”
    The gushing can get old after a while but I find it hard to spin up a lot of outrage when I see commissioned salespeople acting like commissioned salespeople.

  31. Posted by Satchel

    I did a very quick back of the envelope for this building, just using property shark data (so keep in mind the potential inaccuracies, but eyeballing it everything looked reasonable).
    Assuming this actually sells at $588K, that means that net to the owners after commission and transfer tax will be no higher than $550K, or $610 psf. That $psf figure puts 6 out of the 15 units – 40% – “underwater” from the point of view of the “homeowner”. Of course, there are other factors at work here, and I am sure that all of them will figure out a way to convince themselves that this is not the case (and probably a few don’t care anyway).

  32. Posted by Publius

    I’m surprised at the claims by neighborhood residents that there are no “scary” people. The fact of the matter is that there are scary people in SOMA. I think most people discount this issue because they lack personal experience with an incident. Unfortunately, I am aware of several incidents that were very scary for the person involved. One incident occurred between this location and Whole Foods (on Shipley). That is not to say that SOMA is all bad. But the homeless issue in this area is a big problem.
    Also, I agree with the other commenters that the introduction of race into the discussion was inappropriate. Both of the incidents I am aware of involved a homeless white man.

  33. Posted by bbb

    who gives a shit what the cause of the homeless/prosti/disease/sex offenders is — i’m not strolling my 12wk old down any street in that hood for 600k! hmm, maybe its just me and my insensitivity but i’d be happier if they moved to some other hellhole so that when i come home from WORKING ALL DAY i could enjoy myself.

  34. Posted by JoMama

    OK, so Clara isn’t Pac Heights. But you can’t leave anything in your car overnight there either. So you get a few bums, addicts and other derelicts on Clara. As it happens, it’s part of a major city. It should be noted that some buyers may be especially attracted by the contrast of a gritty (thoug by no means TL) neighborhood outside with a clean, modern space inside. The loft as an oasis, not an extension of the suburbs.
    I also sense a bit of a speculator’s discount in the price. A buyer who’s got the balls and the guts to stick it out for 3-5 on Clara could make a pile of $$$. Right now, 6th st. sux, as does most of 5th st. However, the larger improvements in the area have been making their presence felt. Whole Foods is already having an effect (condos and coffee shop on harrison, peets going in on 4th, On the Fly on Clara). The Intercontinental should also help. If the “6th st. beautification project” turns out to be more than just banners on the lightposts, Clara and its ugly sister Shipley could turn into prime real estate– walking distance to the ballpark, caltrain to points south, and muni lines to downtown/financial. At $588k, this place looks like a solid deal to me.

  35. Posted by claraguy

    sigh… Publius, glad you concluded that SOMA is not all bad. However, I don’t believe any of the persons who responded as residents from the area claimed that there were no “scary” people sightings in the area…. I agree that this area does have higher crime and homelessness related issues than many other parts of the city. But certainly you must understand that the residents that actually live here are aware of that? And that many who have lived here for any significant period of time have also experienced incidents of varying levels of severity? So, when those of us who actually live here provide feedback indicating that that improvements are evident and real, does the fact that you’re aware of some specific, unfortunate incidents that have occurred in the area negate the validity of our comments? Without belittling those incidents (I certainly dont mean to), I think not.
    And on a more general note… Many postings on the socketsite forums tend to devolve into preconceived declarative conjecture with little real communication between participants. For instance, I noticed that the posters who jumped into this discussion with preconceived and incorrect characterizations of the local resident responders didnt bother to actually ask myself or others about why we believed the neighborhood was indeed improving. Not much interest in getting feedback from those who have day to day experience on the topic at hand, on this thread and as a general pattern.

  36. Posted by Publius

    claraguy –
    Sorry, maybe I should have been more clear. My comments were not in response to your posts. Rather, my comments were in response to other posts you may have missed, including one that claimed that the neighborhood is fine how it is (August 21, 2:21 PM) and another later comment that claimed that there were no scary people (August 21, 6:21 PM).
    Nothing in my post is inconsistent with your posts. I have lived pretty close (two very long blocks) to this property for almost two years. Also, my son and his mother live less than a block from this property. So, I have also had day to day experience here. I have seen the improvements you discuss. But this does not mean that this area cannot or should not get better.
    Your point seems to be that the area has shown improvement. I agree. To the extent that other posters argue that this area needs no further improvement. I disagree.

  37. Posted by kdk

    I live on this street as well and I find it very funny (and a little annoying) to read so many comments about the street I live on by people who do not live on my street.
    Thank you pop daddy for mentioning what I love most about this street and neighborhood- as sense of COMMUNITY!
    As a 20 something, previous pacific heights resident woman I was worried about moving here at first. When I first moved to the city this was an area of town I would never go to.
    5 years later I own a loft on Clara St. – I walk to my favorite bars – District & 83 Proof – no need for a cab . I know the “homeless” people in this area – because I treat them at people. I know their names and they know me – give them food when I can. Only once since I’ve live in San Francisco have I been in a situation where I was greeted by a very aggressive person and that I was when I lived in Pac Heights. Could it happen in SOMA? Sure, but i’s really just about being smart and understanding your surroundings.
    I get excited about the fun restaurants opening all the time – Orson, Local and who can forgot some of my older fav’s – Lulu and Oola? I walk to Whole Foods for my grocery needs, stop by the Wine Club for the next great cab, and I walk to up to Nordies or Bloomies for my shopping fix.
    A few months ago we got a puppy and suddenly the neighborhood we love to eat and drink in became an community. With our dog park only 1 block away – we’ve meet tons of new friends and shop owners we LOVE our CLARA street loft every more then we ever did!
    So please for those of you who just walk in our neighborhood while you park your cars on the way to the next Giants game or Nordies sale – save your comments until you can actual experience the great community we have going here.

  38. Posted by pop daddy

    I would like to point out that if the responses from those who live here doesn’t prove my point of how we’re a community I don’t know what does! Hooray for Clara St. residents! Anyone who is lucky enough to be able to buy on this Street will be welcome as part of our little family.

  39. Posted by davesf

    This is good to read from residents who live there and, as always, San Franciscans are an opinionated lot, that’s for sure. My experiences are, as pointed out, those from a transient visitor. Those that live here, continue to keep the neighborhood clean and safe and better for everyone who lives AND does not live there. Remember, it’s not just your neighborhood, it is a community that everyone who happens along the 6th Street Corridor should be able to see and experience the positive side of things.
    I still believe that people need to stop burying their heads though and not admit that there’s still work that needs to be done. But I acknowledge and applaud the fact that there is positive action being taken.

  40. Posted by pop daddy

    Hey Davesf I don’t think anyone’s head is “buried in the sand”. There’s no neighborhood in a big city that couldn’t use improving. What I take offense to is blanket statements about the neighborhood made by people who don’t have an immediate knowledge of. Anyone who is looking to live in SOMA knows the good points and the bad. To try and portray just the bad is ignorant and narrow minded. Let’s remember MOMA, Westfield shopping center, CalTrain, the best restaurants in S.F. Sony Metreon, Yerba Buena Gardens, “Pac Bell” Park, the list goes on and on with all the GREAT things that are within walking distance.
    I applaud all of those who input accurate information.

  41. Posted by claraguy

    Publius – thanks for your follow up post. I just got back to take a look and appreciate your follow up.

  42. Posted by moi_sfo

    I’m amazed people find Clara and the surrounding neighborhood “scary.” Have any of you been through the South Bronx 20 years ago?!
    Does it need more improvement, cleanup, etc. Of course… and that’s why we’re paying these [relatively] low downtown prices while getting to walk to Union Square and the ball park. Perhaps it’s all my years living in NYC that skews my perspective. But, to call this neighborhood “scary”… come on now, this is as scary as July 4th fireworks to a 12 year old.

  43. Posted by fluj

    I don’t find 6th street particularly scary but I’m a 36 year old male. Would a 10-year-old kid find it scary? Probably. Have I seen somebody getting wrapped in a body bag at 6th and Market? I have. Is there a lot of open drug use? Yes, there is. Did I go to the South Bronx in ’82 on a fact finding whiteboy mission in search of Kool Herc? no. Did I spend time in Alphabet City in the early ’90s? Yeah. Is 6th and Clara similar to say, Avenue C and 10th? I’d say it sort of is.

  44. Posted by The Milkshake of Despair

    Nice perspective Fluj. Yeah, Alphabet City turned the corner right about when GG Allin checked out and is now significantly less creepy.
    The “fact finding whiteboy mission in search of Kool Herc” made me chuckle. Yeah, ’82 would have been dicey out there. But I did an all day walk around the S. Bronx last year and can report that things aren’t anywhere near as bad as its former reputation. Satchel – there are actually still some of those burned out hulks sitting around, but not many.
    6th will get better in the future (how could it get worse !) I think only the timetable is unknown. 10 years ? 80 years ?

  45. Posted by Satchel

    South Bronx is definitely much better now than before, that’s for sure.
    I GREW UP in the Bronx in the 1970s and early 1980s. Kingsbridge Road and Jerome Avenue. I literally WALKED BY buildings on fire on my way to school on the Grand Concourse. Later, when I attended high school on the Upper East Side of NYC, I took the elevated train (IRT #4) and would typically see at least one building burning a week (sometimes 2 or 3 at once) between Burnside Avenue and 167th street stops.
    I lived in a pretty bad area. It didn’t start out that way – government policies in the 1960s and early 1970s were WHOLLY responsible. The people who lived and settled there came from Italy and Ireland predominately in the early 20th century and literally carved out a life for themselves in almost unbelievably tough conditions (the earlier Jewish immigrants moved from manhattan and settled along the Grand Concourse and Mosholu Parkway). No one helped them. No one. To see the neighborhoods “force destroyed” by governmental “resettling” of whole populations was tragic. And believe me, the tough guys who lived there (a few of whom had been “island hopping” in the Pacific 30 years before, and many of whom were back from Vietnam) did NOT let the neighborhoods go without a fight, that’s for sure.
    After having lived through that sort of stuff growing up, I think I’ll take Tiburon over 6th street, thank you very much! I think all of the guys I grew up with (and our families) would get a pretty big laugh out of the idea of “urban pioneers” paying $600K to live next to bums!
    P.S. I got a good laugh over the banter back and forth over “sex offenders” and AM radio. I heard a guy on AM radio with a Bronx accent a few weeks ago while driving talking about how in “his day” they took molesters of kids up to the top of a building in the Bronx and threw them off. I’m not sure whether it happened or not, but it brought back memories for me. My mom told me the EXACT SAME STORY when I was small – that two times the “guys” (code for the small time mafia that was all over there) did catch child molesters, and did take them up to one of those beautiful 6-8 story Art Deco buildings on the Grand Concourse and tossed them off. Who knows if it was true? (She didn’t personally see it, she said.)

  46. Posted by claranewny

    Many interesting perspectives. As a super recent transplant to the 200 block of clara from NYC, it’s good to hear what my new neighbors have to say about the area.
    I haven’t gotten a decent night’s sleep yet in three nights due to the unfamiliar noises and toiling with what living here actually will be like, especially without a car.
    In 5 different neighborhoods in nyc, I haven’t been so exposed to characters as scary as the(albeit occasional) strays wandering through here. But it sounds like local residents have adjusted and are happy with the area and are contributing to it’s improvement. Sounds positive for change in the neighborhood.
    That part about the sex offenders though – yikes!

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