February 8, 2011
Listing Irony For 85 Caine: "Cash Only, Bank Might Not Finance"
In April 2006 the four bedroom Ingleside home at 85 Caine Avenue was purchased for $675,000, a purchase which was refinanced in November 2007 with two loans totaling $693,000 in debt.
On January 15, 2010 the home was taken back by the bank with no bidders at $435,160. Two week later the property went up in flames.
From one of the tenants in the house at the time of the fire:
“We were renting, supposedly, from the owner and paying him rent,” she said. “Three weeks ago a bank representative came by and said don’t pay the landlord, we own the home…. The house has apparently been up for auction since May and he (the landlord) hasn’t owned it. We’ve been paying him rent since we moved in in September.”
“We spoke with him this morning and it was the first time he had openly told us he is not the owner of the house,” she added. “He said we had to deal with the bank.”
Keep in mind the tenant appears to have been a bit confused (surviving a fire will do that to you) as the bank didn't own the property up until two weeks before the fire.
Yesterday the burned out building returned to the market listed for $279,900. A bit of listing irony: "Cash Only, bank might not finance." Well, at least not 100 percent anymore.
First Published: February 8, 2011 12:45 PM
Comments from "Plugged In" Readers
Knowing how much it costs to tear down a house and get rid of the debris, plus the cost of building something new, plus the fact that houses sell routinely in the 400ss and 500s, this house should be free. The value of the lot is offset by the demolition costs.
In short: it's blight in the making.
Posted by: lol at February 8, 2011 1:15 PM
lol, that's why some self-styled latter day combination Bob Vila & Rudy Martinez type is going to buy it and try to strip off/down just the fire-damaged parts, replace some drywall and other cheap-to-fix pieces, paint it inside and out and then quickly (try to) sell it to some unsuspecting rube who won't read the pre-closing disclosures too carefully. Just you watch.
Posted by: Brahma (incensed renter) at February 8, 2011 1:45 PM
Well, I just hope the "rubes" will do their Google search first. They'll find this SS link very quickly.
Posted by: lol at February 8, 2011 2:08 PM
KTVU calls this Mission District. Not Oceanview?
Posted by: John at February 8, 2011 2:29 PM
At $279k, this is one smokin' deal!
Posted by: PutDaFireOut at February 8, 2011 2:31 PM
I was told that it's not the fire but the water damage (courtesy of the fire dept) that one should worry about. That you may have to replace every piece of wood that was on the receiving end of a fire hose. Can anyone comment on that?
Posted by: Samuel at February 8, 2011 2:40 PM
You're somewhat right Samuel, water damage is often more severe than the fire damage. This is especially true when the fire itself was small. But once the fire enlarges and gets into enough of the structure then any added water damage is insignificant. So it really depends on the fire and the suppression used. I can't really tell from this photo whether the fire got big enough to overshadow the water damage.
Not that the FD should be blamed for water damage, its all part of the job. Doing nothing usually has much more severe consequences including spreading to other buildings and endangering more lives. Their primary job is to save lives and extinguish the fire ASAP. Limiting water damage is secondary.
Posted by: The Milkshake of Despair at February 8, 2011 3:07 PM
^If you get to it quickly, it's not necessarily true. There are services that punch holes in the walls and blow air in them to air them out before the mold can grow. They take out the carpet, dry it, and put it back. They will even remove wallpaper and put it right back if it's thick enough. Insurance will usually pay for the cost.
Posted by: tipster at February 8, 2011 3:07 PM
Extremely common scam being run on foreclosed houses. Sometimes the purported landlord wasn't even the original person who owned the house previously, but rather a neighbor or even just someone who noticed a foreclosure. Do your due diligence.
Posted by: sfrenegade at February 8, 2011 3:13 PM
Yeah, and tipster brings up the proper post-fire remedies that can really arrest the effects of water damage. That flood remediation work won't eliminate all water damage though it will prevent it from progressing.
I'm amazed that they would remove and replace wallpaper. That should be illegal or at least ridiculed. Wallpaper is the scourge of interior design. I've personally removed two houses worth of wallpaper and am still looking for a state legislator to sponsor the "Milkshake Wallpaper Prevention Bill of 2011" which would require any person wanting to install wallpaper to first remove an equal amount of wallpaper elsewhere in the city. I predict that fewer than 5% of potential wall-paperers will abandon their plans and switch to paint once they learn first-hand how hard it is to remove wallpaper and prepare the walls for their next surface.
(Well OK : there will be an exemption for cartoon wallpaper in children's rooms)
Posted by: The Milkshake of Despair at February 8, 2011 3:15 PM
I've been putting a lot of wallpaper in lately so I don't think the legislation will pass.
Posted by: sparky-b at February 8, 2011 3:25 PM
And for certain period homes, of which we have a few in The City, you pretty much have to have wallpaper if you're trying to do a historically-correct restoration. Or even get close.
Posted by: Brahma (incensed renter) at February 8, 2011 3:31 PM
The Milkshake of Despair wrote:
> I predict that fewer than 5% of potential
> wall-paperers will abandon their plans
> and switch to paint once they learn first-
> hand how hard it is to remove wallpaper
> and prepare the walls for their next surface.
You need a "Paper Tiger" (and the spray removal stuff):
As a kid I hated walpaper since I spent days taking the stuff off walls in rental homes. It was only recently that a painter showed me how easy it is to get off wallpaper with a "Paper Tiger"...
Posted by: FormerAptBroker at February 8, 2011 8:00 PM
Yes, I've used the Paper Tiger or a version of it to remove wallpaper before. A squirt bottle, maybe a little soap, and the Paper Tiger, or you can use some removal stuff as FAB said. It's not *that* hard to do, but is an extra step. I'd rather remove wallpaper than prep for painting and paint. :)
Posted by: sfrenegade at February 8, 2011 8:11 PM
Oh I own a Paper Tiger and it definitely helps. But you guys sound like noobs who haven't yet encountered the truly evil forms of wallpaper.
Basic "paper" wallpaper is pretty easy take down. You soak it into submission and then peel or chip it off with a scraper.
But technology has created glossy vinyl coated wallpaper that resists soaking. Oh yeah the Paper Tiger and its tiny wheeled claws helps. It will still take 10X longer for the water to soak in and slowly dissolve the glue. I hope you brought a twelve pack.
That's tough enough. Except the disco era ushered in metallic mylar coated wallpaper. Look at yourself in its shiny mirror finish. Look good, because you're going to be there all day futilely attempting to get moisture past its space age polycarbonate film.
It might be easier to just tear the wall down and start with new sheetrock. Or just bail out and paint over it like the former owner did. Bwa .... bwa .... Bwa HAHAHAHA
Posted by: The Milkshake of Despair at February 8, 2011 11:22 PM
Don't think I've dealt with vinyl coated paper or the mylar paper. Those sound like a disaster from your description. However, isn't the vinyl portion of certain vinyl wallpapers supposed to be easy to remove? That still leaves the backing of the vinyl, of course.
Posted by: sfrenegade at February 9, 2011 10:25 AM
Back in 2002 the flat I was renting had a fire that caused significant fire damage to one room, extensive smoke damage to 3 rooms and the hallway, and then water damage in the room where the fire. The fire department also smashed most of the windows in the place to get the smoke out. I was out of the country and a roommate left a candle unattended. I really did not trust the owner do a quality job fixing the place (he did nothing to deal with the water damage immediately so it started to grow mold quickly). Unsurprisingly the landlord refused to give me my security deposit back.
Fortunately I had renter's insurance and my insurance company took one look at the smoke damage in the house and wrote me a check for the full amount of coverage on the policy. Plus it paid for a hotel until I found a new place and boarding for the cats. Overall I think it paid out around $20,000, a great deal since I less then $200 a year for it.
So everytime I see a fire like this I take the opporutnity to remind any renters, buy renter's insurance!
Posted by: Rillion at February 9, 2011 10:29 AM
I really did not trust the owner do a quality job fixing the place (he did nothing to deal with the water damage immediately so it started to grow mold quickly). Unsurprisingly the landlord refused to give me my security deposit back…everytime I see a fire like this I take the opporutnity to remind any renters, buy renter's insurance!I'm a renter and I have a different take on situations like this.
When one rents from a landlord, particularly in a situation where the landlord has a mortgage on the leased property, every capital expenditure or operating expenditure you ask him or her to make is going to come directly out of her profit and hence the amount she can spend on the vacations in the South of France that she looks forward to each year. Therefore, you should plan on the landlord/landlady spending as little as possible on the requested repair up to and including doing something that looks like it corrects the problem but is not up to code.
So the moral of the story is not to put yourself in that situation by buying your own home so you don't have to put up with this kind of crap. If I sound bitter, it's because I am. I think I may have said this before, but from an economic perspective, the positive utility derived from not having the deal with the chicanery employed by cheapskate landlords is an under accounted-for benefit of owning that most people don't count in their rent vs. buy calculations.
Posted by: Brahma (incensed renter) at February 9, 2011 11:42 AM
sfrenegade - I've encountered the two-ply laminated paper that you describe and it is indeed almost as easy as removing "paper" wallpaper. Be thankful that you haven't had to pull down the single ply vinyl stuff yet.
Also part of the ordeal is removing the residual glue from the wall to prep it for paint. It is kind of like scrubbing a floor except harder. You wallpaper lovers and apologists probably just finished the job with new wallpaper :-)
Rillion - I know two people who have ignited their homes with candles. Those wax sticks look so innocuous (even children can buy them !) but can be very dangerous if used with a cavalier attitude.
I wonder what was the cause of the fire at 85 Caine. From the chronology it looks as if the tenants found out that their former landlord was defrauding them before the fire. I hope there's no causal relationship.
Posted by: The Milkshake of Despair at February 9, 2011 1:00 PM
"You wallpaper lovers and apologists probably just finished the job with new wallpaper :-)"
It was at least 15+ years old, but it was the paper kind, not the one-ply vinyl you mentioned. Not a big fan of most wallpaper, and was glad to be rid of it.
Posted by: sfrenegade at February 9, 2011 2:39 PM
The sale of 85 Caine closed escrow on 3/23 with a reported contract price of $265,000.
Posted by: SocketSite at March 30, 2011 8:23 AM