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December 30, 2011

Up, Down, And Back To Where It Started For The S&P 500 In 2011

S&P 500 in 2011

The S&P 500 closed the day and 2011 at 1,257.60, down .04 points (0.0%) from where it started the year and down 7.8% from an April high, but up 14.4% from an October low.

What's The Point? [SocketSite]

Posted by socketadmin at 3:30 PM | Comments (48)

California Supreme Court Rules Against Redevelopment Agencies

The California Supreme Court has upheld the legislative move orchestrated by Governor Brown that effectively abolished redevelopment agencies across California.

The multi-million dollar question: can large-scale neighborhood revitalization and redevelopment projects thrive, or even simply survive, without agency dollars and support?

Supreme Court Redevelopment Ruling [signonsandiego.com]
Proposed Redevelopment Agency Elimination Puts SF Projects At Risk [SocketSite]

Posted by socketadmin at 9:30 AM | Comments (11)

The Great Courthouse Race And End Of Year Hail Mary Listing

2452 39th Avenue

Remodeled in 2003 per the permits and purchased for $630,000 in 2004, the Outer Parkside single-family home at 2542 39th Avenue has just returned to the market listed as a "short sale" for $490,000.

In default on a $504,000 first mortgage with $41,332 past due as of three months ago when a notice of default was finally filed, and while not noted in the listing as far as we can tell, the home is also currently scheduled to hit the courthouse steps in San Francisco on January 3, 2012 at 2 pm.

And yes, while perfectly functional, we do find ourselves biting our tongues a bit with respect to the kitchen which was remodeled under the touted purview of "the previous owner who was an architect."

∙ Listing: 2542 39th Avenue (2/1) – "$490,000" (short sale) [Redfin]

Posted by socketadmin at 9:30 AM | Comments (26)

December 29, 2011

U.S. Pending Sales Up 5.9% In November But Failed Closings Loom

As prices continued to tick down in October, the National Associations of Realtors Pending Home Sales Index increased 7.3 percent from October to November, up 5.9 percent year over year.

Keep in mind, however, that NAR's Index reflects contracts not closings and the percentage of Realtors reporting failed contracts remains at 33 percent versus 9 percent at the same time last year.

In the West, the Pending Home Sales Index jumped 14.9 percent from October to November, up 2.9 percent year-over-year.

S&P/Case-Shiller San Francisco: Homes Slip, Condos Dip In October [SocketSite]
Pending Home Sales Rise Again in November [realtor.org]
U.S. Pending Sales Jump In October As Did Reports Of Failed Closings [SocketSite]
From Bad To Worse And Business As Usual At NAR [SocketSite]

Posted by socketadmin at 9:45 AM | Comments (5)

December 28, 2011

Construction Commences On 120 Units At Folsom And Essex


Construction has commenced at the southeast corner of Folsom and Essex, also known as Transbay Block 11A. As plugged-in people know, it’s an eight (8) story building with 120 below market rate apartments for the formerly homeless, a suite for supportive services, and two market rate retail spaces that's rising on the former surface area parking site.

Transbay Block 11A Site (Image Source: MapJack.com)

The project will also yield a wider Essex Street sidewalk, a bulb out on the corner of Folsom and Essex, and two new rows of urban trees (click image below to enlarge).

The building is now slated to be construction complete by September 2013.

Transbay Block 11A (Folsom @ Essex) Plans And Proposed Design [SocketSite]

Posted by socketadmin at 8:00 AM | Comments (64)

December 27, 2011

S&P/Case-Shiller San Francisco: Homes Slip, Condos Dip In October

S&P/Case-Shiller Index Change: October 2011 (www.SocketSite.com)

According to the October 2011 S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Index, single-family home prices in the San Francisco MSA fell 0.7% from September ’11 to October '11, down 4.7% year-over-year (versus a 5.9% YoY drop in September), down 39.4% from a peak in May 2006.

For the broader 10-City composite (CSXR), home values fell 1.0% from September to October, down 3.0% year-over-year and down 31.9% from a June 2006 peak.

Atlanta and the Midwest are regions that really stand out in terms of recent relative weakness. Atlanta was down 5.0% over the month, after having fallen by 5.9% in September. It also has the weakest annual return, down 11.7%. Chicago, Cleveland Detroit and Minneapolis all posted monthly declines of 1.0% or more in October. These markets were some of the strongest during the spring/summer buying season. However, Detroit is the healthiest when viewed on an annual basis. It is up 2.5% versus October 2010. Atlanta, Cleveland, Detroit and Las Vegas are four markets where average prices are below their January 2000 levels; and Atlanta and Las Vegas posted new lows in October.

On a month-over-month basis, prices fell for the bottom third of San Francisco MSA price tiers, pushed for the middle, and nominally increased for the top third.

S&P/Case-Shiller Index San Francisco Price Tiers: October 2011 (www.SocketSite.com)

The bottom third (under $319,767 at the time of acquisition) fell 0.9% from September to October (down 9.1% YOY); the middle third was unchanged from September to October (down 8.1% YOY); and the top third (over $599,697 at the time of acquisition) rose 0.3% from September to October, down 1.6% year-over-year (versus down 3.1% in September).

According to the Index, single-family home values for the bottom third of the market in the San Francisco MSA have dropped below May 2000 levels having fallen 60% from a peak in August 2006, the middle third has dropped below March 2002 levels having fallen 41% from a peak in May 2006, and the top third has dropped below February 2004 levels having fallen 25% from a peak in August 2007.

Condo values in the San Francisco MSA fell 2.6% from September '11 to October '11, down 8.0% year-over-year, down 35.6% from a December 2005 peak.

S&P/Case-Shiller Condo Price Changes: October 2011 (www.SocketSite.com)

Our standard SocketSite S&P/Case-Shiller footnote: The S&P/Case-Shiller home price indices include San Francisco, San Mateo, Marin, Contra Costa, and Alameda in the "San Francisco" index (i.e., greater MSA) and are imperfect in factoring out changes in property values due to improvements versus appreciation (although they try their best).

S&P/Case-Shiller: Fourth Quarter Starts with Broad-based Declines [Standard & Poor's]
S&P/Case-Shiller San Francisco: Prices Fell In September [SocketSite]

Posted by socketadmin at 6:30 AM | Comments (12)

December 23, 2011

Happy Holidays

Happy holidays to all and safe travels if you’re traveling, perhaps one day departing from San Francisco's Transbay Transist Center which is slated to be unwrapped in six years.

Have a great weekend; we will see you on Tuesday to review the latest Case-Shiller home price report. And our thanks to steelblue for allowing us to share their holiday handiwork.


Transbay Center Plans: Revised, Refined, And Unveiled Today [SocketSite]
Transbay Transit Center Project Construction Schedule [transbaycenter.org]

Posted by socketadmin at 12:45 PM

Apples To Oranges To Apples (And Three "Free" Years) At 501 Beale

501 Beale

Already $87,355 past due on a $652,000 loan by the time a notice of default was filed last December, a past due amount which had grown to $115,828 this past July, last month 501 Beale #14E was finally taken back by the bank with no bidders at $477,000 in cash.

Purchased for $711,500 in April 2006, the Watermark one-bedroom has just returned to the market listed for $499,900, priced 30 percent below its comp setting sale in 2006.

∙ Listing: 501 Beale #14E (1/1) 759 sqft - $499,900 [Redfin]

Posted by socketadmin at 9:00 AM | Comments (11)

U.S. New Home Sales: Up 9.8% Year-Over-Year In November

The seasonally adjusted annual pace of new single-family home sales in the U.S. increased to 315,000 in November, up 1.6 percent from a revised rate of 310,000 in October and 9.8 percent above the 287,000 pace recorded in November 2010.

Preliminary U.S. new home sales (versus pace) in November were estimated to be 22,000 (give or take 8 percent), down 3,000 from October and the second slowest November on record. November sales peaked in 2005 with 86,000 new homes sold.

In the West, the pace of new home sales was up 1.5 percent year-over-year to 69,000 in November, down 16.9 percent versus the month before.

New Residential Sales: November 2011 [census.gov]
New Residential Sales Since 1963 [census.gov]
U.S. New Home Sales: Up 8.9% Year-Over-Year In October [SocketSite]

Posted by socketadmin at 7:45 AM | Comments (25)

December 21, 2011

It Would Have Been 50 Percent Over Had They Priced At A Million...

4378 Cesar Chavez: Living

Listed for $1,100,000 last month, the 1,810 square foot Albert Lanier designed home at 4378 Cesar Chavez quickly went into contract. As a plugged-in reader soon reported, "The sign in the Herth window says…22 offers received," and as another reader soon followed:

That's lame. Those guys missed the price point and they were the first to admit it during showings.
They wasted a lot of people's time. Yet there they are, touting how badly they gauged the market. Great.

The sale of 4378 Cesar Chavez closed escrow yesterday with a reported contract price of $1,540,000. And yes, that’s 40 percent "over asking" which could have been 50 percent over had they listed it for a million.

Channeling Mid-Century Modern Flair At 4378 Cesar Chavez [SocketSite]

Posted by socketadmin at 4:45 PM | Comments (25)

While Underwhelmed By The Finishes, We Do Like The Floor Plan

2040 Franklin #708 Floor Plan

We’re not so sure we would characterize the remodeling as "spectacular," but the floor plan for 2040 Franklin #708 is rather appealing with dual entrances to the one toilet and bath.

Having been listed and relisted seven times since 2008 when first asking $669,000, or $629,000 in early 2010, the 715 square foot Jackson Towers one-bedroom #708 was listed anew today once again, now asking $569,000.

∙ Listing: 2040 Franklin #708 (1/1.25) 715 sqft - $569,000 [Redfin]
2004 To 2010 (And Bank-Owned) For 2040 Franklin #1008 [SocketSite]

Posted by socketadmin at 2:30 PM | Comments (14)

From Bad To Worse And Business As Usual At NAR

From Bloomberg with respect to the National Association of Realtors revised figures for existing homes sales over the past four years:

The number of existing homes sold in the U.S. was revised down by an average 14 percent since 2007, magnifying the depth of the slump that contributed to the last recession.
Purchases were revised to 4.19 million for 2010, down 15 percent from a prior estimate of 4.91 million, the National Association of Realtors said today in Washington. Sales climbed 4 percent in November to a 4.42 million annual pace, from a revised 4.25 million rate the prior month that reflected the benchmark updates.
Purchases were trimmed by 11 percent for 2007, by 16 percent in 2008 and by 16 percent in 2009.

Revisions to downward median price trends were little changed. And to quote NAR's chief economist, "even before the revisions things were bad, now they are even worse."

U.S. Existing Homes Sold Since ’07 Revised Down by 14% [Bloomberg]
Existing-Home Sales Continue to Climb in November [NAR]
Demand Up, Supply Down, And Yet The Median Falls? [SocketSite]

Posted by socketadmin at 9:00 AM | Comments (79)

December 20, 2011

Unhappy Holidays "In The Heart Of Pacific Heights"

2142 Franklin Living

Purchased for $910,000 in September 2006 with 20 percent down and a $728,000 loan, the buyer of 2142 Franklin was $41,636 past due on payments by the end of 2010.

Originally scheduled for auction earlier this year but postponed by "mutual agreement," this Friday the "charming two bedroom, two bath flat in the heart of Pacific Heights" (as per its prior two listings) is once again scheduled to hit the courthouse steps in San Francisco.

The 1,202 square foot remodeled condo traded for $750,000 in May of 2004.

Posted by socketadmin at 11:15 AM | Comments (9)

Challenge Of BMR Resale Restriction Misses By Two Months

Having purchased resale restricted BMR condominiums in San Francisco at below market rates, a group of BMR owners filed suit against the City in May 2009 claiming the right to resell their units at market rates and challenging a December 2008 ordinance which clarified "the City’s intent that the requirements of the BMR Program apply in perpetuity" versus for only 20 years.

The December 2008 ordinance also provided owners of BMR units a two-year window in which to buy their way out of the program if they wished.

Earlier this year it appeared as though the plaintiffs might actually prevail, but last week the First District Court of Appeal overturned an injunction which had suspended the aforementioned two-year window to exit the program.

In this interlocutory appeal, the City claims the court erred in issuing a preliminary injunction to maintain the status quo while plaintiffs’ claims were being litigated. Among other arguments, the City claims that plaintiffs did not have a reasonable probability of prevailing at the trial––one of the requirements for issuing a preliminary injunction––because all of plaintiffs’ causes of action were time-barred.
We agree with the City that…the statute of limitations governing any subdivision-related decision under the SMA, required plaintiffs’ facial challenge to the Ordinance to be filed within 90 days of the enactment of the Ordinance. Because plaintiffs’ claims were not filed within the 90-day timeframe, plaintiffs have not shown a likelihood of success on the merits. For this reason, we reverse the preliminary injunction, and remand the case to the trial court for further proceedings.

We'll keep you posted and plugged-in.

Aiuto v. City and County of San Francisco Appellate Opinion [ca.gov]

Posted by socketadmin at 10:30 AM | Comments (12)

Housing Starts Up Driven By Demand For Rentals

Housing starts in the U.S. were up 24.3 percent year over year in November driven by demand for rentals and multi-family housing with construction of structures with five (5) or more units up 180.5 percent year over year while single-family home starts dropped 1.5 percent.

Permit activity to start construction was up 20.7 percent in November on a year over year basis, once again driven by demand for multi-family housing which increased 80.6 percent versus 3.6 percent for single-family homes.

In the west, total starts were up 66.3 percent year over year, up 17.7 percent for single-family homes while total permit activity was up 29.3 percent, up 13.9 percent for single-family homes.

New Residential Construction: November 2011 [doc.gov]

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

December 19, 2011

Cow Hollow Infill And Ongoing Intrigue On Green

2151-2157 Green Street: 12/19/11 (www.SocketSite.com)

In 2007 the 6,800 square foot Cow Hollow home at 2151 Green Street sold for $9,000,000 which included the undeveloped lot at 2157 Green Street next door.

Following a lot split, a remodeled 2151 Green Street returned to the market in 2008 listed for $10,950,000 while the undeveloped lot at 2157 Green was listed for $24,000,000 including the construction of an approved 13,500 square foot home.

As plugged-in people know, 2151 Green Street ended up selling for $3,066,001 on the courthouse steps while the lot plus plans for 2157 Green sold for $3,700,000, purchased by the same buyer as 2151 Green Street for a total purchase price of $6,766,001 for the two District 7 pieces that sold together for $9,000,000 in 2007.

A full scale remodeling of 2151 Green Street has since commenced which will include an all new interior, roof deck and au pair suite. And yes, the permit to build a new five story home on the lot at 2157 Green Street has been re-approved and the lot has been cleared for construction.

In terms of the designs for 2157 Green Street, we’re happy to note all facades and floor plans have been revised per the permits, but we’re still looking for a rendering. Tipsters?

Sold Together For $9M in '07, Purchased Apart For $6,766,001 In '09 [SocketSite]
Reader Versus Realtor: Did 2151 Green Street Just Sell At Auction? [SocketSite]
But Hey, $550,000 Is Simply A Rounding Error To A Proper Industrialist [SocketSite]
Another District Seven Mansion Heads For Foreclosure (2151 Green) [SocketSite]
The Scoop On 2157 Green Street (Could You See The Foreshadowing?) [SocketSite]

Posted by socketadmin at 11:00 AM | Comments (7)

No Apples (Or Appreciation) At 844 Bay

844 Bay Dining

Purchased for $4,600,000 in August 2008 following a complete rebuilding and remodel, in 2009 the 4,500 square foot home at 844 Bay Street was remodeled again including a new Arclinea kitchen and the addition of a 1,300 bottle climate controlled wine cellar. And this past May, the contemporary home returned to the market listed for $4,800,000.

844 Bay Kitchen

Withdrawn from the market in June and then listed anew in August, last month the resale of 844 Bay Street closed escrow with a recorded contract price of $4,400,000.

That Same House In Address Only Sells (And Gooses The $/SQFT) [SocketSite]
The Same House In Address Only: A Contemporary 844 Bay Street [SocketSite]
844 Bay Returns As An Apple Remodeled (And If Only It Were 888…) [SocketSite]
∙ Listing: 844 Bay Street [844baystreet.com]

Posted by socketadmin at 8:00 AM | Comments (0)

Still Nearly 30 Percent Short At 310 Townsend Versus 2007

310 Townsend #411

As the apples-to-apples "Regular Sale!" of 310 Townsend #108 closed escrow earlier this month selling for 26 percent ($136,000) under its 2007 purchase price, the "short sale" of 310 Townsend #411 closed escrow this past Friday with a reported contract price of $575,000. Call it 29 percent ($235,000) less than the $810,000 which was paid for the 835 square foot one-bedroom back in 2007 when the condo hit the market priced at $865,000.

A "Regular" Apple At 310 Townsend Drops Into Our Cart [SocketSite]
310 Townsend: Available And Selling [SocketSite]

Posted by socketadmin at 8:00 AM | Comments (0)

December 16, 2011

Penthouse Atop San Francisco St. Regis Sells For A Record $28 Million

188 Minna Penthouse Sunset View

As we first reported earlier this week, the bank-owned penthouse atop the San Francisco St. Regis was in contract having been listed for $35 million, down from $70 million in 2008.

According to our sources, the sale of the penthouse atop 188 Minna has just closed escrow with a recorded contract price of $28 million, nearly double the previous record for a condo in San Francisco set by the penthouse atop the Royal Towers with an unreported but rumored sale price of $15 million a decade ago.

As plugged-in people know, it was real estate developer Victor MacFarlane who deeded the penthouse atop the St. Regis back to the bank earlier this year having purchased the space as three unfinished units for roughly $30 million in 2005 and having invested 5 years of time and money combining the units to construct and finish the 17,000 square foot penthouse with 2,900 square feet of outdoor terrace space.

As always, don’t forget those invitations to the housewarming and thanks for plugging in.

UPDATE: A plugged-in reader with photoshop skills submits, "So, how good do you have to be to find something like THIS under your tree?"

188 Minna Penthouse Under Tree (www.SocketSite.com)

Full Disclosure: The co-listing agent for the penthouse atop the San Francisco St. Regis advertises on SocketSite but couldn't comment on the sale.

Buyer Emerges For The Most Expensive Bank-Owned Condo In The US [SocketSite]
$70M St. Regis Penthouse Goes Back To The Bank And Drops To $35M [SocketSite]
St. Regis Penthouse Asking $70M: Is San Francisco All Growns Up? [SocketSite]

Posted by socketadmin at 10:30 AM | Comments (26)

San Francisco County Employment Up By 3,100 In November

Preliminary November labor force data counts for San Francisco, Marin and San Mateo counties pegs the unemployment rates at 7.8%, 6.9% and 7.5% respectively, down 0.3 percentage points in San Francisco and Marin, down 0.4 in San Mateo.

On a revised basis, the number of unemployed in San Francisco fell by 1,400 in November (from 37,600 to 36,200) while the labor force increased by 1,700 (from 462,300 to 464,000) and the number of employed increased by 3,100 (from 424,700 to 427,800).

Overall unadjusted California unemployment fell to 10.9% as the labor force fell by 35,900 workers and the ranks of the unemployed fell by 71,100.

Monthly Labor Force Data for Counties: November 2011 (Preliminary) [EDD]
San Francisco County Employment Up By 2,700 In October [SocketSite]

Posted by socketadmin at 9:30 AM | Comments (140)

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