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It Must Just Be Because We're "Bearish," Why Else Would We Care?

S&P Posts Worst Losing Streak in Two Months [Bloomberg]
Kostin: S&P 500 May Fall to 1,100 [Bloomberg]
Ciao? [SocketSite]

Posted by socketadmin at 3:00 PM | Comments (27)

Is That The Fat Lady We Hear Singing Over At CitiApartments?

2099 Market Street

Pledged as collateral on a number of loans which are now in default, it’s a plugged-in tipster that notes "the Debtors’ respective membership interests in the limited liability companies" which own the following properties are scheduled to be sold on December 12:

78 Buchanan Street
233-241 Church Street
252-258 Church Street
950 Franklin Street
1844 Irving Street
1401 Jones Street
2677 Larkin Street
2075-2083 Market Street
2099 Market Street
1870 Pacific Avenue
500 Stanyan Street
645 Stockton Street
1340-1360 Taylor Street
1320 Washington Street
1461-1465 Burlingame Avenue (Burlingame)

Some might recognize the 2099 Market Street adress as the headquarters of the group formerly known as CitiApartments and from which "Frank Lembi used to listen to opera on Wednesday evenings from his office on the mezzanine" according to our tipster.

UPDATE: As a reader quickly catches, it’s the Membership Interests in the LLCs that own the properties above which are being auctioned against $29,700,000 in mezzanine debt that’s in default and the properties listed above remain "encumbered by a deed of trust that secures the Property LLCs’ total aggregate indebtedness to a senior mortgage lender in the original principal amount of $103,300,000."

CitiApartments Is No More! Well, Sort Of… [SocketSite]
The Story (And Faces) Behind The Rise And Fall Of The Lembis [SocketSite]

Posted by socketadmin at 10:30 AM | Comments (10)

Demand Up, Supply Down, And Yet The Median Falls?

The pace of seasonally adjusted existing-home sales in the U.S. rose 1.4 percent from 4.90 million in September to a 4.97 million pace in October, up 13.5 percent from the 4.38 million unit pace recorded in October 2010.

Total housing inventory at the end of October fell 2.2 percent to 3.33 million existing homes actively on the market, an 8.0 month supply, down from an 8.3 month supply in September and down from a 10.5 month supply in October 2010.

While demand appears to have increased, and supply appears to have declined, the median sale price for existing-homes was down 4.7 percent year-over-year in October to $162,500 as distressed sales accounted for 28 percent of sales volume, down two points from last month, down six points year-over-year.

Existing-home sales in the west increased 4.4 percent from September to October, up 15.5 percent on a year-over-year basis on a median sales price that’s 1.6 percent lower.

October Existing-Home Sales Rise, Unsold Inventory Continues to Decline [realtor.org]

Posted by socketadmin at 8:30 AM | Comments (5)

November 18, 2011

Testing The Waters To Develop Four Infill Acres At Fifth And Mission

Chronicle Site Rendering

It was back in 2007 that the Hearst Corp. first started to seek a developer for their four-acre mid-market site on which the Chronicle Building stands. And now, four years later, Forest City has filed a preliminary project assessment application with San Francisco’s Planning Department to build "1.3 million square feet of commercial space, 700 units of housing and a wide array of cultural and arts uses" across the site at Fifth and Mission.

For now, the plan envisions eight buildings that will range from quite small on the western side of the property closer to Sixth Street to nearly 400-foot towers on the eastern side, closer to Fifth Street and downtown. The site, currently 50 percent surface parking, extends from Mission to Howard streets between Fifth and Sixth streets.
The project calls for 35,000 square feet of open space, including 22,000 square feet on the roof of the Chronicle building and 13,000 square feet of ground-level public open space. About 85,000 square feet would be dedicated to arts and cultural groups.

According to the San Francisco Business Times, "Forest City hopes to have the project approved by 2014 and build in phases between 2015 and 2026."

Chronicle Site Rendering: Minna Elevation

Forest City unveils futuristic plan for Chronicle site [Business Times]
A Huge (Potential) Development For The Mid-Market/SoMa 'Hood [SocketSite]

Posted by socketadmin at 2:30 PM | Comments (6)

832 Fell Falls A Bit More

832 Fell: Kitchen

As we first wrote about the Alamo Square mansion at 832 Fell Street this past August:

Boasting 16 rooms (seven of which are bedrooms), a detached guesthouse, and parking for approximately eight cars across a double lot, the "ultimate Alamo Square mansion" a block from the square returned to the market in January listed for $3,999,000.
In July, the "restored" mansion was relisted for $4,900,000. And yesterday, 832 Fell Street was listed anew for the third time in 2011, this time asking $3,500,000.

Reduced to $3,150,000 before being withdrawn from the MLS ten days ago, today, 832 Fell Street was listed anew with a new broker and asking $2,995,000. For the sake of posterity, and some light Friday reading, we’re directing all comments to our original post.

Up, Down, And An All Around "Restoration" For 832 Fell [SocketSite]

Posted by socketadmin at 1:45 PM

"Winning" On Avila

196 Avila

As we first reported three months ago with respect to 196 Avila:

With three circa 2007 loans totaling $2,281,000 in debt, this past May the "magnificent Mediterranean home…located on one of the most sought after blocks in San Francisco" was foreclosed upon with a winning bid of $183,203 on the courthouse steps.
Keep in mind, however, that it was the third mortgage that was foreclosing and first (which was in default with $1,823,927 due) and second ($350,000) mortgages still exist.

Listed for $2,595,000 in August and then reduced to $2,395,000 in September, yesterday the asking price for 196 Avila was reduced to $2,095,000, roughly $80,422 less than the balance of the remaining first and second mortgages combined.

Foreclosed Upon For The First Time In Almost Thirty Years [SocketSite]
Failing Grades In Auction Buying 101 (And Commenting) [SocketSite]

Posted by socketadmin at 9:30 AM | Comments (13)

San Francisco County Employment Up By 2,700 In October

Preliminary October labor force data counts for San Francisco, Marin and San Mateo counties pegs the unemployment rates at 8.1%, 7.2% and 7.9% respectively, down 0.1 percentage points in San Francisco and San Mateo, down 0.2 in Marin.

On a revised basis, the number of unemployed in San Francisco fell by 300 in October (from 37,900 to 37,600) while the labor force increased by 2,700 (from 459,600 to 462,300) and the number of employed increased by 3,000 (from 421,700 to 424,700).

Overall unadjusted California unemployment fell to 11.3% as the labor force increased by 55,200 workers and the ranks of the unemployed fell by 18,700.

Monthly Labor Force Data for Counties: October 2011 (Preliminary) [EDD]
San Francisco And California Employment Increase In September [SocketSite]

Posted by socketadmin at 9:15 AM | Comments (1)

From Seals Stadium, To Strip Mall, To 1,800 Rental Units On 16th?

Potrero Center

The site of the old San Francisco Seals Stadium until 1959 and currently home to a 227,000-square-foot strip mall anchored by a 60,000-square-foot Safeway, the Potrero Center at 2300 16th Street has been put up for sale.

Under the Eastern Neighborhoods rezoning, the nine-acre site at 2300 16th St. is part of a mixed-use district that allows for 85-foot heights. The site sits on the top of a hill on the border of the Mission District and Potrero Hill. The property has 704 parking spaces.
Whatever development occurs at the site would have to involve Safeway, which has a long-term lease on its 60,000-square-foot market. No redevelopment plan has been filed with the city’s planning department, although the firm Christiani Johnson Architects has done some preliminary drawings of what might be built on the site.

Based on the size of the site, a redevelopment could yield up to 1,800 apartments.

Potrero Center for sale; 1,800 apartments eyed [Business Times]

Posted by socketadmin at 8:00 AM | Comments (49)

November 17, 2011

San Francis Wood (And Nine Others) On The Courthouse Steps

136 Saint Francis Blvd

Purchased for $2,000,000 in 2003, and having traded for $888,000 in 1996, the 4,210 square foot home at 136 Saint Francis Boulevard was refinanced in 2006 with a new $2,120,000 first mortgage.

With a first reported default date of 2/12/10, at which point the loan was already $127,698 past due, it’s now twenty-one months later, the loan balance on the $2,120,000 note is over $2,500,000, and 136 Saint Francis Boulevard is scheduled to hit the courthouse steps in San Francisco tomorrow afternoon.

In addittion to 136 Saint Francis, nine other homes are also scheduled to hit the steps in San Francisco tomorrow with original default dates ranging from 7/27/07 for 1000 Crescent Avenue to 12/28/10 for the single-family at 86 Byxbee.

Preforeclosure Activity Picks Up Speed Across San Francisco [SocketSite]

Posted by socketadmin at 3:40 PM | Comments (5)

A Short Apple Drops A Long Way At 310 Townsend

310%20Townsend%20%23408%20Living.jpg

As we first reported in August with respect to a couple of resales down at 310 Townsend:

At the same time, 310 Townsend #408 has just hit the market listed as a short sale for $425,000 having been purchased for $665,000 in 2007 as well. From the listing: "Currently tenant occupied, the condo commands $3100 per month in rent, making it an excellent investment vehicle for cash flow." Of course, there's also capital preservation to consider.

And as we added last month:

Having been purchased for $665,000 ($828 per square foot) in 2007, and having fallen out of contract last week when listed for $425,000, the "approved" short sale of 310 Townsend Street #408 is once again active and available and listed for $435,000 ($542 per square), a 36 percent drop in value at asking.
At the same time, the list price for the "regular sale" of 310 Townsend #108 has been reduced to $389,000 ($569 per square foot). The one bedroom was purchased for $525,000 ($768 per square) in 2007 as well, an effective drop of 26 percent at asking.

The short sale of 310 Townsend #308 closed escrow today with a reported contract price of $435,000, thirty-six (36) percent below its sale price in 2007. 310 Townsend #108 is now in contract, but the sale is still contingent.

Apples-To-Apples (And Short To "Regular") At 310 Townsend [SocketSite]
Capital Preservation Versus Cash Flow At 310 Townsend [SocketSite]

Posted by socketadmin at 2:15 PM | Comments (17)

FHA Loan Limits Up To $729,750 Close To Being Resuscitated

Having expired at the end of September following a three year run, and having effectively been out of reach since August, it would appear that the $729,750 loan limit for FHA loans in high cost areas, such as San Francisco, will be resuscitated.

From the Wall Street Journal today:

...late Monday a bipartisan Congressional committee announced an agreement to increase FHA's maximum mortgage limits to $729,750 from $625,500 through Dec. 31, 2013. The bill is linked to a continuing resolution to fund Congress past Saturday, increasing the likelihood that this backroom deal will become law. The House is scheduled to vote on the bill today without debating these changes...

As we wrote when the "super conforming" limits first expired: "While we don’t expect the change to have a radical impact on the market, we do expect to see an impact on liquidity and values in the $650,000 to million dollar segment due to potentially higher down payment requirements and rates." And now, vice versa.

The Housing Lobby Strikes Again [Wall Street Journal]
Loan Limits Set To Fall From $729,750 To $625,000 In San Francisco [SocketSite]
Conforming Loan Limit Extension Gains Obama's Support [SocketSite]

Posted by socketadmin at 10:30 AM | Comments (33)

Channeling Mid-Century Modern Flair At 4378 Cesar Chavez

4378 Cesar Chavez: Living

Built in 1975 channeling Mid-Century Modern flair, the 1,810 square foot single-family Noe Valley home at 4378 Cesar Chavez has hit the market listed for $1,100,000.

4378 Cesar Chavez: Kitchen

It looks to be perfectly livable but with room(s) to refine and views to boot.

4378 Cesar Chavez: View

∙ Listing: 4378 Cesar Chavez (2/2) 1,810 sqft - $1,100,000 [4378cesarchavez.com]
San Francisco’s Modern Era Of Design And Development [SocketSite]

Posted by socketadmin at 9:00 AM | Comments (22)

November 16, 2011

Recorded San Francisco Sales Activity Up 2.8% In October

San Francisco Sales Volume And Median Price: October 2011 (www.SocketSite.com)

Recorded home sales volume in San Francisco was up 2.8% on a year-over-year basis last month (448 recorded sales in October 2011 versus 436 sales in October 2010), up 12.3% as compared to the month prior and versus an average September to October increase of 0.1% over the past seven years. An average of 543 San Francisco homes have sold in October since 2004 when recorded sales volume hit at 720.

San Francisco's median sales price in October was $635,000, down 2.6% on a year-over-year basis, up 3.5% as compared to September in which the median was down 1.0% YoY.

For the greater Bay Area, recorded sales volume in October was up 5.3% on a year-over-year basis, down 4.5% from the month prior (6,444 recorded sales in October '11 versus 6,122 in October ’10 and 6,749 in September '11) as the recorded median sales price was down 8.6% year-over-year, down 4.1% month-over-month.

At the extremes, Sonoma County recorded a 26.9% increase in sales volume (a gain of 104 transactions) on a 8.3% decline in median sales price, while Contra Costa County recorded a 0.3% decrease in sales (a loss of 4 transactions) on a 3.6% decline in median price. Napa was the only Bay Area county to record an increase in median sales price (up 1.0%) while the median dropped 10.4% in Santa Clara.

As always, keep in mind that DataQuick reports recorded sales which not only includes activity in new developments, but contracts that were signed ("sold") many months or even years prior and are just now closing escrow (or being recorded).

Bay Area Home Sales Up From 2010, Prices Down [DQNews]
Recorded San Francisco Sales Activity Drops 9.7% In September [SocketSite]

Posted by socketadmin at 11:15 AM | Comments (36)

The Byers Seek A Buyer For A $15 Million "Fixer" At 3636 Washington

3636 Washington

Constructed in 1910 having been "commissioned by Adolf Coors as a wedding gift to his daughter," and last updated, restored and renovated in 1986 (note the period appropriate pool table below), the eight bedroom Presidio Heights house at 3636 Washington has hit the market "in need of work" (according to the listing) and seeking $15,000,000.

3636 Washington Living

3636 Washington Game Room

According to public records, 3636 Washington is 9,336 square feet and currently carries a tax basis of $2,253,891. And if we’re not mistaken, the house has long belonged to the Byers Family, as in Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers of which some might have heard.

∙ Listing: 3636 Washington (8/6.75) - $15,000,000 [3636washington.com]

Posted by socketadmin at 8:30 AM | Comments (17)

Tennis Anyone? No Longer At 8 Washington As Now Proposed...

8 Washington Revised Rendering: West

With the owners of the Golden Gateway Tennis and Swim Club having recently acquired the Tennis Club at 645 Fifth Street, a facility that was once slated to be razed for condos to rise, the proposal for the 165-unit condo, retail, and fitness facility at 8 Washington Street has since shed its replacement tennis courts in favor of "an expanded $10 million outdoor aquatic center and a public children’s playground."

8 Washinton Plan Less Tennis

From the Business Times:

In total, the project will have 29,000 square feet of public open space and parks and 40,000 square feet of recreation. The children’s playground will be 4,500 square feet and will be adjacent to a cafe with outdoor seating. The pool area will be 40 percent larger than what is currently at the club.
Golden Gateway members looking to play tennis would be shuttled in vans to the SoMa club.

Game, Set, Match To The San Francisco Tennis Club (645 5th) [SocketSite]
The Impact Of 8 Washington [SocketSite]
8 Washington Street Project Proposal (And Renderings) Revised [SocketSite]
8 Washington St. plan eliminates tennis, expands pool area [Business Times]

Posted by socketadmin at 7:45 AM | Comments (7)

November 15, 2011

Peek Inside The Top To Bottom Renovation Of 2507 Pacific Avenue

2507 Pacific: Top Floor Bedroom

As plugged-in people know, 2507 Pacific Avenue was purchased for $2,500,000 in early 2010 as a 3,509 square foot home in an unrenovated and garage-less state.

2507 Pacific: Kitchen

Despite some initial opposition, a garage has since been added to the Pacific Heights property and the interior has been renovated from top to bottom.

2507 Pacific: Wine Cellar

And while it never made it to the MLS, and the website offering a peek inside just recently went live, as a plugged-in reader correctly notes, the property is already in contract.

2507 Pacific Avenue [2507pacific.com]
We’ve Got Ours (And Don’t Want Yours) In Pacific Heights [SocketSite]

Posted by socketadmin at 8:30 AM | Comments (44)

November 14, 2011

You're Sold! (And Hopefully Not Sued For Falling Off The Stairs)

601 4th Street #322 Living

As we reported this past September:

Purchased for $1,330,000 in October 2007, the 1,866 square foot Heublein Building (601 4th Street) loft number 322 has since been extensively remodeled.
The two-bedroom is now back on the market in 2011 and asking $1,450,000 ($777 per square foot). The sale will likely contribute to price "appreciation" when it comes to industry stats, but as plugged-in people know, it won’t be apples to apples.

This past Thursday the sale of 601 4th Street #322 closed escrow with a reported contract price of $1,455,000 ($780 per square foot). And yes, as a reader referred, the seller was an "Apprentice," at least for the first six episodes of season two.

The Heublein Building Lofts (601 4th Street) [SocketSite]
Before, After And "Appreciation" At (Or At Least For) The Heublein [SocketSite]

Posted by socketadmin at 12:00 PM | Comments (1)

Not Only Kinky, But Perhaps Somewhat Hinky As Well

A pair of emails forwarded from a plugged-in tipster reveals that the owner of the Armory, who was leading the charge against the development of 49 Julian, had made an all cash offer for the property and was seeking "to move forward ASAP with escrow, in order to avoid any additional work having to be done for the [Historic Preservation Committee] and Planning Commission hearings."

Following the offer to acquire the entire property, and despite continuing to publicly oppose the project, the owner of the Armory then proposed "to pre-purchase units on the top two floors [of 49 Julian]" in order to "assist [the developer in] financing and remove a certain amount of risk of house price fluctuations from [the developer’s] plate."

Once again, following a few modifications, the project appears to be headed for approval this week. And as far as we know, all offers from the owner of the Armory to purchase the property in part or in whole have since been withdrawn.

The "Kinky" Opposition To 49 Julian Avenue As Proposed [SocketSite]
Working Out The Kinks To Build Eight Homes At 49 Julian [SocketSite]

Posted by socketadmin at 9:30 AM | Comments (0)

Working Out The Kinks To Build Eight Homes At 49 Julian

49 Julian Aerial

As we first reported last month:

As proposed, the vacant single-story warehouse at 49 Julian Avenue would be razed and a five story, 50-foot-tall building with eight two-bedroom residential units over at-grade parking for eight vehicles would rise adjacent to the Armory.
Opposing the project as proposed, the owner of said Armory who acquired the building in 2006 for the primary purpose of film production for Kink.com. The argument against:
This development raises 3 issues which are of concern to the preservation of the Armory, and to the ongoing restoration efforts. Each of these issues would be partially mitigated by requiring the developers to adhere to [new zoning limits which would limit the project to 45 feet].
1. Loss of light: Light will be lost to south facing, historically and architecturally significant Drill Court windows.
2. Obfuscation of curved roof: The signature curved roof will no longer be continuously visible from the exterior.
3. Incompatible adjacent Use: The proposed development places housing 4 feet from the Drill Court, where Armory Studios has pemitted work in progress to restore a place of legal assembly, with maximum occupancy 4080 persons.

In response to comments by San Francisco’s Historic Preservation Committee, the Project Sponsor has since removed a nine-foot high stair enclosure to roof and sloped the roof line of the required exit stair in an effort to reduce shadows on the adjacent Armory Building Drill Court windows and moved the fourth and fifth floor walls two feet to allow more light and create a wider separation between the Armory and the proposed project.

49 Julian Context

On Wednesday, the Historic Preservation Committee will have a chance to comment on the revised project before it heads to San Francisco's Planning Commission on Thursday with the Planning Department’s recommendation for approval.

49 Julian Rendering

The "Kinky" Opposition To 49 Julian Avenue As Proposed [SocketSite]
From (Proposed) Condos To Kink [SocketSite]

Posted by socketadmin at 8:30 AM | Comments (7)

November 11, 2011

2513 Pacific Returns Following A Down To The Systems Redo

2513 Pacific Avnenue

Originally designed by Frederick Hamilton in 1890 to be his residence, beyond the façade, there’s a good chance Hamilton wouldn’t recognize the “Queen Anne Meets…21st Century” home at 2513 Pacific Avenue following a down to the systems renovation and redo.

2513 Pacific Kitchen

The four level home (click floor plans below to enlarge) now sports modern amenities within, a modern garden behind, and a much more modern $6,995,000 price tag having been purchased for $3,425,000 in 2006 in a much less modern state.

∙ Listing: 2513 Pacific Avenue (5/5) - $6,995,000 [sfproperties.com]

Posted by socketadmin at 2:45 PM | Comments (30)


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