February 22, 2012
San Francisco Prestige Index Down 0.3% In Q4 2011, Down 3.1% YOY
The First Republic Prestige Home Index for "San Francisco" homes valued at more than $1 million, and averaging $2.52 million, fell 0.3 percent from the third to fourth quarter of 2011, down 3.1 percent year-over-year versus a 1.4 percent YOY decline in the third quarter, down 18.2 percent from a third quarter 2007 peak and back below the third quarter of 2004.
As always, keep in mind that the "San Francisco" index includes "a cross-section of luxury homes in Alamo, Atherton, Belvedere, Danville, Healdsburg, Hillsborough, Lafayette, Los Altos, Los Gatos, Mill Valley, Moraga, Orinda, Palo Alto, Piedmont, Portola Valley, Ross, St. Helena, San Francisco, Saratoga, Sonoma, Tiburon and Woodside."
∙ First Republic Prestige Home Index: San Francisco [firstrepublic.com]
∙ San Francisco Prestige Index Up 1.0% In Third Quarter, Back To 2004 [SocketSite]
Existing U.S. Sales Pace Up As Supply Drops And Median Does As Well
The pace of seasonally adjusted existing-home sales in the U.S. rose 4.3 percent from a downwardly revised 4.38 million in December to a 4.57 million pace in January, up 0.7 percent from the 4.54 million unit pace recorded in January 2011.
Total housing inventory at the end of January ticked down 0.4 percent to 2.31 million existing homes actively on the market, a 6.1 month supply, down from a 6.4 month supply in December and versus a 7.6 month supply in January 2011.
While demand appears to have increased, and supply appears to have declined, the median sale price for existing-homes continued to decline, down 2.0 percent year-over-year in January to $154,700 as distressed sales accounted for 35 percent of sales volume, up three points from last month but down two points year-over-year.
Existing-home sales in the west increased 8.8 percent from December to January, down 3.1 percent year-over-year with a median sales price that’s down 1.8 percent as well.
∙ Existing Sales Pace Up And Supply Drops As Median Drops As Well [SocketSite]
∙ Existing-Home Sales Rise Again in January, Inventory Down [realtor.org]
February 21, 2012
Arc Light "Urban Lofts" At 21 Clarence Place Leasing Come April
As a plugged-in tipster notes, the Martin Building Company’s Arc Light Co. re-development of 178 Townsend (a.k.a. 21 Clarence Place) will be available for lease in April. North and south facing roof decks with a custom spa, grilling area, and enclosed dog run are atop the building while 29 different floor plans, ranging from studios to three bedrooms, are within.
∙ 178 Townsend Moves Forward While 72 Townsend Leases Instead [SocketSite]
∙ Arc Light Co. Residences (21 Clarence Place) | Floor Plans [arclightco.com]
Take One Down, Pass It Around, 1,137 Bottles Of Wine On The Wall
Purchased for $2,555,000 in 2002 but then extensively remodeled in 2009, at which point the temperature controlled wine room for 1,138 bottles was added, the four bedroom home at 245 Mallorca Way has returned to the market listed for $3,495,000.
A few other numbers for 245 Mallorca Way: two car garage, three fireplaces, four and one-half baths, and a finished 3,676 square feet prior to the remodeling. Oh, and the seven televisions are included in the price but the chandelier in the dining room is not.
∙ Listing: 245 Mallorca Way (4/4.5) - $3,495,000 [sfproperties.com]
Fresh & Easy At 1245 South Van Ness Set For Approval This Week
On the agenda for San Francisco’s Planning Commission this week, the division and conversion of the former Delano's Market at 1245 South Van Ness into a Fresh & Easy.
The Project will divide the existing grocery store of approximately 21,452 square‐feet into a new 16,241 square-foot grocery store (Fresh and Easy, the formula retail use) and a 5,211 square-foot commercial retail space (tenant t.b.d.).
The Project will also result in the removal of approximately 16 off-street parking spaces and will reconfigure the accessory parking lot to provide 49 off‐street parking spaces, additional landscaping and bicycle parking.
As proposed, bicycle parking for thirty (30) will be provided versus the six required; the existing mural created by Precita Eyes and the children of Cesar Chavez School will be moved south; and sidewalk seating (or a parklet) would be added along South Van Ness.
∙ Fresh & Easy Headed For The Mission, Could The Castro Be Next? [SocketSite]
∙ San Francisco Planning Commission Agenda: 2/23/12 [sf-planning.org]
February 17, 2012
201 Folsom Towers Floor Plan Sneak Peek
With signature Infinity floor plans which are fabulous for taking in the views but many find frustrating to actually furnish, the discussion surrounding the re-designed towers of 201 Folsom, Tishman Speyer’s sister project to the Infinity, quickly turns to the floor plans, the most common plans for which a plugged-in tipster delivers a sneak peek
Click the images to enlarge, and continue reading for more plans and floors.
∙ The Arquitectonica Redesigned 201 Folsom Street Rendering Scoop [SocketSite]
∙ 201 Folsom: The Revised Plans For The Two New Towers To Rise [SocketSite]
∙ 201 Folsom: Three More Years To Contemplate And Start Construction [SocketSite]
Recorded San Francisco Sales Fall 1.8% In January, Median Ticks Up
Recorded home sales volume in San Francisco fell 1.8% on a year-over-year basis last month (327 recorded sales in January 2012 versus 333 sales in January 2010), down 34.5% as compared to the month prior, right in line with an average December to January drop of 34.3% over the past seven years. An average of 366 San Francisco homes have sold in January since 2004 when recorded sales volume hit at 558.
San Francisco's median sales price in December was $602,500, up 2.1% on a year-over-year basis and 1.3% as compared to December in which the median sale price was down 7.8% year-over-year.
For the greater Bay Area, recorded sales volume in January was up 10.3% on a year-over-year basis, down 26.9% from the month prior (5,479 recorded sales in January '12 versus 4,966 in January ’11 and 7,494 in December '11) while the recorded median sales price was down 3.6% year-over-year, down 7.3% month-over-month.
Last month distressed property sales – the combination of foreclosure resales and “short sales” – rose to 51.9 percent of the Bay Area resale market. That’s up from 48.5 percent in December and down slightly from 54.5 percent in January 2011.
Foreclosure resales – homes that had been foreclosed on in the prior 12 months – accounted for 28.0 percent of resales in January. That was up from a revised 27.8 percent in December, and down from 35.0 percent a year earlier. Foreclosure resales peaked at 52.0 percent in February 2009. The monthly average for foreclosure resales over the past 15 years is about 9 percent.
Short sales – transactions where the sale price fell short of what was owed on the property – made up an estimated 23.9 percent of Bay Area resales last month – the highest for the current housing cycle. That was up from 20.7 percent in December and up from 19.5 percent a year earlier.
At the extremes, Sonoma recorded a 29.8% increase in sales volume (a gain of 97 transactions) on a 4.2% decline in median sales price, while Napa recorded a 21.2% decrease in sales (a loss of 25 transactions) on a 5.6% increase in median price. The median sales price in San Mateo dropped 7.8% as sales increased 17.7%. Only San Francisco and Napa counties recorded year-over-year declines in sales volume.
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).
845 Montgomery Penthouse Triptych And Listing Take Three
As we wrote this past August:
With a self-reported $900,000 worth of upgrades since being purchased for $2,633,000 in April 2008, the listing for 845 Montgomery PH#1 has been withdrawn from the MLS after another 117 days on the market without a reported sale, last asking $2,950,000.
On a positive note, plugged-in readers now know where to get a Vertigo triptych made.
From the triptych to take three, the 845 Montgomery Penthouse #1 has just returned to the market with a just-completed roof deck and listed for $2,650,000.
∙ Listing: 845 Montgomery PH#1 (2/2.5) – 2,018 sqft - $2,650,000 [McGuire]
∙ A Bit Of Vertigo As An 845 Montgomery Penthouse Is Withdrawn [SocketSite]
∙ Comments: The 845 Montgomery Penthouse Pineapple Returns [SocketSite]
∙ A Penthouse Pineapple And Lower Floor Apple At Jackson Square [SocketSite]
February 16, 2012
The 333 Fremont Scoop: Let The Shoring Begin
It’s a plugged-in tipster that first caught the construction equipment arriving on the 399 Fremont site yesterday, but it’s not for the Californian to start rising. No, it’s actually to shore up the property line and prepare for the excavation of 333 Fremont upon which the 8-story residential building rendered above (click to enlarge) will rise.
First permitted in 2005, the 333 Fremont site is entitled for 83 condos averaging 803 square feet over three levels of underground parking.
188 King Street Number 207: Then, Now, And Tomorrow
The marketing materials for the newly minted 188 King Street noted "Sold" next to #207 and a price of $1,650,000 in 2006. In 2007, the 1,799 square foot South Beach condo hit the market as a resale asking $1,595,000 but failed to find another buyer.
According to public records, the sale price in 2006 was actually $1,450,000. And if we’re not mistaken, the purchase was financed by way of a $1,000,000 first, a $215,000 second, and $235,000 down. Relisted or reduced four times since 2007, and asking $1,150,000 this past December, by the end of 2010 the first mortgage was already $82,973 in arrears.
Tomorrow, 188 King Street #207 is currently scheduled to hit the courthouse steps in San Francisco with $1,118,835 owed on the million dollar first mortgage alone.
230 Ritch Is
In 1998, the tri-level loft at 230 Ritch was created when Santos Prescott & Associates led the conversion of a 1930’s South Beach warehouse to live/work condominiums.
In 2004, the 2,640 square foot unit with two outdoor patios and twenty-two foot ceilings in the master suite was purchased by a local architect for $1,420,000.
∙ Listing: 230 Ritch Street (4/3) 2,640 sqft - $2,499,000 [230ritchstreet.com]
Foreclosure Flaws Uncovered In San Francisco
From the New York Times with respect to the results of an audit commissioned by San Francisco assessor-recorder Phil Ting that reviewed roughly 400 foreclosures that occurred in San Francisco from 2009 to 2011:
About 84 percent of the files contained what appear to be clear violations of law, it said, and fully two-thirds had at least four violations or irregularities.
The report, which was compiled by Aequitas Compliance Solutions, a mortgage regulatory compliance firm, did not identify specific banks involved in the irregularities. But among the legal violations uncovered in the analysis were cases where the loan servicer did not provide borrowers with a notice of default before beginning the eviction process; 8 percent of the audited foreclosures had that basic defect.
In a significant number of cases — 85 percent — documents recording the transfer of a defaulted property to a new trustee were not filed properly or on time, the report found. And in 45 percent of the foreclosures, properties were sold at auction to entities improperly claiming to be the beneficiary of the deeds of trust. In other words, the report said, “a ‘stranger’ to the deed of trust,” gained ownership of the property; as a result, the sale may be invalid, it said.
In 6 percent of cases, the same deed of trust to a property was assigned to two or more different entities, raising questions about which of them actually had the right to foreclose. Many of the foreclosures that were scrutinized showed gaps in the chain of title, the report said, indicating that written transfers from the original owner to the entity currently claiming to own the deed of trust have disappeared.
A big question: could the flaws result in clouds on title for the foreclosed upon homes?
∙ Audit Uncovers Extensive Flaws in Foreclosures [New York Times]
February 15, 2012
San Francisco Home Sales Slip In January And Not Simply Seasonally
According to the detail behind Redfin's summary data, the sales volume of single-family homes in San Francisco dropped 26.7 percent on a year-over-year basis last month (from 187 in January 2011 to 137 in January 2012) while condo and townhome sales volume fell 10.1 percent (from 178 in January 2011 to 160 in January 2012).
The median sale price for single-family homes in San Francisco ticked up 3.3 percent year-over-year in January, but the price per square foot fell 6.4 percent. With respect to condos, the median sale price fell 1.6 percent in San Francisco while the price per square foot ticked up 3.0 percent versus January 2011 (down 4.8 percent versus December).
∙ Sellers Still in Control in San Francisco [Redfin]
2012: A Russian Hill Odyssey
As we noted when 1023 Vallejo hit the market in 2009 listed for $4,900,000, designed by Julia Morgan for a Mrs. Livermore in 1917, the viewtastic Russian Hill home was renovated in 2005 having been purchased by the late Hal Riney for $3,000,000 in 2003.
Withdrawn from the market in 2009 without a sale, as a plugged-in reader notes, the 3,679 square foot property is back on the market and listed for $4,200,000.
Five full baths, four car parking, three bedrooms, two thumbs up, and one beautiful stove.
∙ Listing: 1023 Vallejo (3/5) 3,679 sqft - $4,200,000 [obeo.com]
∙ Morgan Beauty That’s More Than Skin (And Views) Deep: 1023 Vallejo [SocketSite]
Santa Clara Approves 49ers Stadium Contract And Plans For 2014
With Santa Clara’s City Council having voted 5-1 to approve a $879 million contract to start construction on a new 49ers stadium this July, and over a billion dollars in funding already lined up, the San Francisco 49ers will likely kickoff their 2014 season in a new home down south, exercising an option to leave Candlestick a year before their lease expires in 2015.
∙ Santa Clara Scores $850 Million To Finance New 49ers Stadium [SocketSite]
∙ First And Goal For The
San Francisco Santa Clara 49ers Stadium [SocketSite]
∙ Four More Years For The 49ers At Candlestick [SocketSite]
An Apple A Day: Dolores Heights 2008 To 2012
As we wrote last month:
Speaking of around the corner from a Bi-Rite, having been redecorated and remodeled a bit since purchased for $1,695,000 in August of 2008, the 2,350 square foot Dolores Heights home at 3769 20th Street has returned to the market listed for $1,849,000.
While not perfectly apples-to-apples, we’ll call it close enough for horseshoes, at least with respect to the property as the neighborhood has remodeled a bit since 2008 as well.
The sale of 3769 20th Street has closed escrow with a reported contract price of $1,750,000. Call it 5.4 percent under asking but 3.2 percent over 2008.
∙ Let’s See What’s Changed Since 2008 Up In Dolores Heights [SocketSite]
∙ Mission Bay Block 7 West Rendered With A Bi-Rite In Mind [SocketSite]
February 14, 2012
New Life, Food, And Beer For The New Mission Theater As Proposed
With plans for condos to rise where the Giant Value store at 2558 Mission Street currently stands in the works, tomorrow San Francisco’s Architectural Review Committee will review plans to convert the adjacent New Mission Theater to a five-screen venue with food and adult beverage service operated by Alamo Drafthouse Cinema.
Inside, the theater would be converted from one to five screens, "utilizing and dividing the existing balcony levels (one auditorium on the ground floor, three new auditoriums on the lower balcony, and one new auditorium on the upper balcony)" while the projection room on the first floor would become a bar (click image to enlarge).
On the outside, the plan "would maintain and restore the character-defining elements on the exterior, including the Art Deco façade; free-standing pylon sign with neon tubes spelling out “New Mission;” cantilevered marquee; and streamlined parapet."
UPDATE: By way of a plugged-in reader, a (good) feeling for the Alamo Drafthouse Cinema culture in the form of their R-rated "Don't Talk or Text" PSA:
∙ Giant Value Housing Or Headache To Come In The Mission? [SocketSite]
∙ New Mission Theater (2554‐2558 Mission) Plans [sfplanning.org]
The 401 Grove Street Seven And Great Parking Debate Continued
As we first reported last month, the permits to build 63 units over ground floor retail and parking at 401 Grove Street have been held due to a dispute with Planning over the number of approved parking spaces.
While the plans for 401 Grove Street approved by San Francisco’s Planning Commission last year "included tables and graphics depicting seven of the residential parking spaces in a tandem configuration, which would result in a total of 39 residential parking spaces," the written application "indicated that the project was proposing parking in an amount which is principally permitted by the Planning Code…a maximum of 32 residential parking spaces for the project, at a ratio of one space for each two dwelling units."
The developer’s request to amend the project’s approval to include the seven additional spaces is back in front of the Planning Commission this week with the Planning Department recommending the request be denied. The basis for Planning's recommendation:
1. The requested amendment would contradict the vision of the General Plan, and specifically the Market and Octavia Area Plan to focus new housing in walkable, transit‐served locations in a manner that discourages private automobile use as a primary mode of travel.
2. The movement of additional vehicles around the project site resulting from the added parking may degrade the experience of pedestrians and bicyclists.
3. The requested amendment is not necessary or desirable for, or compatible with the surrounding neighborhood.
As of an hour ago there were 67 cars parked in the long-standing lot at 401 Grove Street which would be demolished in order for the proposed new building to rise.
∙ Permits For 401 Grove On Hold Over Parking Dispute With Planning [SocketSite]
∙ 401 Grove: Three More Weeks To Get Its Planning Groove On [SocketSite]
∙ 401 Grove Street: The Revised Designs And Density [SocketSite]
∙ Market-Octavia Plan And Requisite Rezoning Approved By The Board [SocketSite]
No Apples At 315 Santa Clara Avenue (But There Is A Pool)
Purchased for $2,625,000 in 2007, the 5,707 square foot home on a double lot at 315 Santa Clara Avenue was reconfigured and remodeled in 2008, including a new kitchen.
The St. Francis Wood home returned to the market listed for $4,795,000 in 2009. Having been relisted and reduced a few times since, 315 Santa Clara Avenue is back on the market and asking $3,800,000. And yes, there’s a heated pool (and sauna) within.
∙ Listing: 315 Santa Clara Avenue (4/5.5) 5,707 sqft - $3,800,000 [315santaclara.com]
February 13, 2012
TIC Conversion Lottery Bypass And Mayoral Take Two
The statement and question from Supervisor Farrell that Mayor Lee is scheduled to answer in a scripted five minute fashion tomorrow at two:
Tenancies-in-common (TICs) in San Francisco have traditionally been a vehicle to allow residents in our City to realize their goal of home ownership. San Francisco has always promoted a path towards converting TICs to condominiums, which has a number of benefits - principally the ability to obtain lower interest rates for their property.
Over the past decade, however, the condo conversion lottery has created a bottleneck for TIC owners, and the chances of prevailing in the condo lottery have continued to diminish year after year. To compound matters, during the recent recession the vast majority of lenders who financed TICs stopped lending into the market, leaving only a handful of financing options - at the same time many TIC owners are now facing adjustable-rate mortgages that are resetting and threatening to place many TIC owners into foreclosure. Especially given these dynamics, compounded with our looming annual budget deficits and the dismantling of our redevelopment agency, the concept of condo lottery bypass legislation whereby condo owners would be offered a one-time opportunity to pay a fee to bypass the lottery, should be a win-win situation for everyone, especially given these fees would be specifically directed towards affordable housing in San Francisco.
Would you support this condo lottery bypass legislation, which would serve the dual purpose of helping vulnerable TIC owners in San Francisco, and provide a significant source of funding for our affordable housing community to plug our current budget deficit?
In 2010, San Francisco's Budget and Finance Committee voted 3-1 to kill a one-time condo conversion lottery bypass for a fee sponsored by the then mayor Newsom, a vote the then Board of Supervisors could have overturned but didn’t.
∙ An Estimated 2,500 Units Entering 2011 Condo Conversion Lottery [SocketSite]
∙ Condo Lottery Bypass For A Fee Resurfaces In Mayor's New Budget [SocketSite]
∙ Budget and Finance Committee Kills Condo Lottery Bypass For A Fee [SocketSite]