February 12, 2013

Mid-Century Contemporary In Modern Clothing

101 Montcalm

While the façade of 101 Montcalm might be Mid-Century Modern, the interior is no longer:


Purchased for $849,000 in 2007 with no building permits issued since, the Bernal Heights home is now back on the market listed as a "very chic Mid-Century Modern" three-bedroom home with a "cool kitchen" and asking $849,000 once again.

101 Montcalm Kitchen

If you think you know Bernal, or design, now's the time to tell.

∙ Listing: 101 Montcalm Street (3/1.5) 1,193 sqft - $849,000 [101montcalm.com]

First Published: February 12, 2013 10:00 AM

Comments from "Plugged In" Readers

Everything about that remodel screams "cheap", starting with the kitchen cabinets. 3BR/1.5BA is not a modern configuration for a home and the Great Room is awkward and cramped.

$712 per square foot for that product at that location seems like a poor value overall. At 25% down/4%/30-years, the monthly payment is $3,040. Better off renting.

Posted by: Sausalito_res at February 12, 2013 10:32 AM

Furthermore, the kitchen countertops appear to be laminate (not that there's anything wrong with that...but not appropriate at this price-point).
And the bathroom photo on Trulia is hideous.

The property website is blocked to me but from what I can see, this is a misguided effort.

Posted by: Sausalito_res at February 12, 2013 10:38 AM

That kitchen is any thing but modern. I have a feeling it was in place before they painted everything else gray. Way to busy for modern.

Posted by: sunset guy at February 12, 2013 10:44 AM

Better off renting? LOL I live nearby and a 3 bed 1.5 bath in worse shape is currently renting for over $5,000 a month. The rental market right now is off the charts in SOMA/Mission/Bernal/Potrero.

Posted by: Greg at February 12, 2013 11:00 AM

"the kitchen countertops appear to be laminate"

No, clearly solid surface/quartz.

My 2 cents: worst lot ever.

Posted by: R - at February 12, 2013 11:00 AM

The kitchen is terrible and completely out of place, the bathrooms are unfortunate, but on the other hand it looks like it might have some very nice views. The lot is pretty small, but at least they did a nice job with it.

They really did themselves a dis-service with the kitchen, could have shown so much better, and they probably wouldn't have had to spend too much more to do it.

Posted by: lyqwyd at February 12, 2013 11:02 AM

Wow...that kitchen...what were they thinking? Some simple IKEA cabinets would look significantly better than what's there now.

Posted by: M at February 12, 2013 11:22 AM

I think it'll sell for $875,000.

Posted by: jack at February 12, 2013 11:24 AM

I think that the lot is going to be a challenge and you are somewhat isolated up there but I will speculate that this home will most likely sell close to asking. Not much inventory at the moment. Also, removing the kitchen cabinets is an easy fix. Not a big deal to most buyers. I'm just not sure why the current sellers didn't do it...

Posted by: Willow at February 12, 2013 11:58 AM

Buy now or you'll be priced-out forever!

Someone had to say it.

Posted by: Sausalito_res at February 12, 2013 12:03 PM

No way! This house is getting a ton of interest. I bet it will sell for 1.1M+ quite possibly all cash. Have you seen what's been happening on the market recently? No inventory and a lot of buyers with cash.

Posted by: sf_market_crazy at February 12, 2013 12:11 PM

All the kitchen cabinets needs is re-facing. That's maybe a $2,000 job. Would make a huge improvement. Any buyer could see that.

Posted by: jlasf at February 12, 2013 12:12 PM

It will sell for well over asking. It's crazy out there.

Posted by: unwarrantedinlaw at February 12, 2013 12:25 PM

Cabinets are easy to fix, whatever. This is the only house in North Bernal for sale at the moment. Awesome views, great block. Quite small rooms. But still I bet it easily goes for 900-950.

Posted by: Snark17 at February 12, 2013 12:25 PM

One of these days someone's gonna put a refrigerator in an island like the stove is here.

Posted by: EH at February 12, 2013 12:54 PM

Cabinets, shabinets, this is absolutely insane. Did everyone miss 'graph two above? Here, let me help you out:

Purchased for $849,000 in 2007 with no building permits issued since, the Bernal Heights home is now back on the market listed as a "very chic Mid-Century Modern" three-bedroom home with a "cool kitchen" and asking $849,000 once again.

Emphasis mine.

In other words, all of that remodel work, including what appears to be some significant structural work to get that open, "loft" effect in the interior, was performed illegally, which is why I assume they aren't asking for more than the 2007 price.

If a contractor didn't do the work (and what contractor that values their license would undertake a significant remodel like this one without permits? that's a serious question), presumably the seller is going to have to disclose the illegality of the improvements. In an efficient and rational market, this place should sell for a significant discount from asking, to compensate the buyer for the liability they are taking on after the sale.

If this place goes well over asking, that just incentivises every two bit flipper out there to do more wholesale illegal remodels.

Posted by: Brahma (incensed renter) at February 12, 2013 1:30 PM

No cooking stove vent?

Posted by: Rodger at February 12, 2013 1:35 PM

Pure amateur work. Terrible choices for materials.

Kitchen plan is a disaster. No vent over the stove?

Most likely this was done by an unlicensed contractor/homeowner who has not a clue as to what good and logical construction is all about.

But let's not use this as a easy way out to think that others should just ignore permits and codes and do the same thing.

Posted by: futurist at February 12, 2013 2:33 PM

I agree the design is terrible, but we seem to be jumping to a lot of conclusions here (well, I guess it IS the internet).

Just cause someone is a terrible designer doesn't meant they don't have a clue about construction. And who says there was structural work? Significant remodel? Where? I don't see anything very significant. Some crappy cabinets and bad tile?

Posted by: R at February 12, 2013 2:46 PM

And just because someone is a terrible contractor does not mean they have a clue to what good design is all about.

And, just my experience, MOST contractors do not know about good design and should refrain from talking about design.

Posted by: futurist at February 12, 2013 3:13 PM

I have to say the exterior is very cool, the inside not so much.

Posted by: 94114 at February 12, 2013 3:17 PM

I predict this goes for $950k (without seeing it in person). Montcalm has a lot of nice houses on it, and I could see that alone elevating this house.

Posted by: Bernaler at February 12, 2013 4:54 PM

The kitchen cabinet doors make me want to be violent. AGH!

Posted by: philipthemholes at February 12, 2013 5:25 PM

I don' t think there were many structural changes here so I wouldnt be that worried on that end (I own the house next door and its almost identical and there was already an open great room in the original plan). While I don't love the interior updates at all, I'm sure they didnt put much in....the outside is modest and nice and Montcalm is one of the best streets in Bernal for views, quietness and proximity to freeways, parks and 24th street. Will be interesting to see what this goes for as I have plans to start on mine soon and am not sure on how far to take it

Posted by: mikey woodz at February 12, 2013 5:44 PM

Good grief, that is the most horrible kitchen design I have seen in a long time. Love the non vented oven. And how am I supposed to see the display when there is a shelf over it?

Someone obviously didn't know what the F they were doing. The cabinets plus the mish-mosh of shelving is chaotic at best. Nothing lines up correctly and the cabinets don't open the correct way (L vs. R) in some places. This kitchen needs to be gutted and remodeled correctly.

Posted by: Lori at February 12, 2013 5:49 PM

Them are some fugly kitchen cabinets! What a half-ass remodel.

Posted by: OohAhh at February 12, 2013 6:12 PM

The kitchen is actually not bad for flow. Its real problem is that its tiny -- squeezed into a corner. There are tonnes of internet-types who don't cook and won't care.

Even though this house won't make anybody excited, it is in the new center of gravity for SF (i.e. one of the jumping off neighborhoods for tech in Soma/penninsula) so it will go over ask (unless there is something really dire about it in the disclosures...). Bernal is the new Glen Park...

Posted by: around1905 at February 12, 2013 8:22 PM

That kitchen reminds me of rental studios where spatially there is only one large room and its outline is clearly demarcated by a change from wood to black/white checkered vinyl flooring and nothing else. It's rather surprising that the kitchen in this 3 bedroom house is practically the same size as a studio apartment's.

It appears, but can't say for sure, that the stove oven vents out near the base of the island's back panel. That should add significantly to the open plan benefits of food smells permeating into the walls and furnishings of the living room.

The home certainly is not as modern as the description may warrant or the staging may present itself - very few outlets evident and more importantly, not one single flat screen monitor ANYWHERE! I think a clue to the owner's real taste may reside in the bedroom at the bottom level - American Tourister luggage circa 1970s anyone?

Posted by: eskimo girl at February 13, 2013 6:49 AM

It's not about the "oven" venting out. That's not required by code.

It's the cooktop (electric or gas) that is required to have an exhaust hood above.

Posted by: futurist at February 13, 2013 12:04 PM

It's rather surprising that the kitchen in this 3 bedroom house is practically the same size as a studio apartment's.

Less surprising when you consider that this "3 bedroom house" is the size of a one-bedroom apartment.

Posted by: shza at February 13, 2013 12:53 PM

d#mn, someone paid 849,000 to live in this tiny place in a crappy neighborhood right by the freeway? There's a peak of the bubble buy! I'm sure they are praying and praying they find some other sucker to unload it on to.

Posted by: anon at February 13, 2013 2:50 PM

anon, this is far from a crappy neighborhood, its quiet with good views and good weather and close proximity to many things..849k for this place is not bad.....have any other decent 3 bdrm's for that price? theres places right on the same street and nearby that have sold for double that price

Posted by: mikey woodz at February 13, 2013 4:27 PM

849K for this place is a steal. It will easily go for 1.1-1.2M in this market and in this neighborhood! Stove or no stove, there are no other decent options out there.

Posted by: sf_market_crazy at February 13, 2013 4:38 PM

If you don't think this one is worth 849K,
did you think this one would sell for 1,200,360?

Posted by: sf_market_crazy at February 13, 2013 4:42 PM

Exactamundo! and GP is very comparable to Bernal North Slope

Posted by: mikey woodz at February 13, 2013 5:33 PM

I bet it sells close to $1M. There is nothing on the market right now and Bernal is hot.

Posted by: Happy Tree at February 18, 2013 2:45 PM

Contingent as of 2/22.

Posted by: Boo at February 25, 2013 11:57 AM

Having closed escrow yesterday with a reported contract price of $1,010,000, a plugged-in Happy Tree ("I bet it sells close to $1M") was on the record for the win and appears to know Bernal the best.

Posted by: SocketSite at April 16, 2013 2:00 PM

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