September 18, 2013
Forget The Past And Pot Fillers, It's Time To Focus On The Drinks
The 1,450 square foot single-family home at 1688 Dolores Street on the border of Noe Valley and Bernal Heights was purchased for $1,227,000 back in 2005.
Facing a foreclosure sale in 2011 with $1,610,000 in mortgage debt then owned, the property ended up selling for $928,000 in a short-sale instead, a 25 percent drop in value on an apples-to-apples basis for the house which has since been "re-imagined," remodeled and expanded.
And the remodeled 1688 Dolores is now back on the market and listed for $2,295,000.
∙ Listing: 1688 Dolores Street (3/3) - $2,295,000 [1688doloresstreet.com]
∙ A Plugged-In Pot Filler Comment (And Theme) We Couldn’t Resist [SocketSite]
First Published: September 18, 2013 11:00 AM
Comments from "Plugged In" Readers
Not the greatest location at 30th and Dolores..
This place was in escrow several weeks ago and the deal fell through.
Been interesting to see if they get close to asking price on this..
Posted by: chad n. freud at September 18, 2013 11:12 AM
Whoever did the re-imagining didn't have much of an imagination.
Posted by: R at September 18, 2013 11:36 AM
Before it had character. Now it's just a box.
Posted by: Jane at September 18, 2013 11:44 AM
wow, at least they got rid of that awful old tree.
Posted by: david m at September 18, 2013 11:59 AM
The realm of on-line real estate
Such derision in the air
Whilst an audience should hate the game
Instead they hate the players
Posted by: soccermom at September 18, 2013 12:18 PM
Why are there drawers under the bar overhang? Looks like it makes it impossible to sit on those stools.
Posted by: Greg at September 18, 2013 12:22 PM
R, it's another example of value engineering.
They removed all of the character (or at least reduced it substantially) from the exterior and spent the money they budgeted on the interior. Probably because the seller is betting that will induce the ultimate buyer to pay more for it.
Posted by: Brahma (incensed renter) at September 18, 2013 12:36 PM
You can modernize a property in a way that at least gives a nod to the original architecture (my preference). If they were going to totally obliterate the mission style they should have gone all the way and removed the tile roof.
Posted by: wc1 at September 18, 2013 12:38 PM
"Why are there drawers under the bar overhang? Looks like it makes it impossible to sit on those stools."
What? Staging that contradicts how people actually live in a home? That's unheard of!
I agree with wc1 that it is strange to eliminate just part of the original Mission style. It wouldn't cost much to replace that terracotta tile.
As for the tree on the left, it is hard to tell from the photo whether it still exists or not. The "after" photo was taken from a much closer distance and the tree and its shadow could easily be out of the frame.
Posted by: The Milkshake of Despair at September 18, 2013 1:02 PM
The new outside appearance strips all the San Francisco charm from the previous exterior. It's easy for me to imagine how cheap and tacky the stucco will look in eighty years.
Posted by: Jackson at September 18, 2013 1:29 PM
Carbonated water on demand is pretty cool...
Posted by: Willow at September 18, 2013 1:59 PM
Poor house! It used to be cute. Now it's wearing a ghastly 'tech mask'.
Posted by: lark at September 18, 2013 2:26 PM
At some point in the future, this home will almost 100% guaranteed to be restored on the exterior to its original state. Should be a fun project for someone.
I could write a 1000 words on my issues with this home and the listing itself. Here are just 3 points: The music on the listing website is so tired. And for anyone installing a Nest thermostat on a remodel like this one: Protip - you don't need the special backplate they give to you. You mount it directly to the wall. The backplate is for retrofits where the homeowner doesn't know how to patch, sand and paint a wall. And whoever took the close up of the stairs (img 42) apparently didn't realize the wood riser on the bottom step of the image has a small gap that needs to be nailed properly at some point.
I do like the instant seltzer and I'm intrigued by that spice rack thing.
Good luck to all. It will probably sell as it really isn't that bad; just nit picking...
Posted by: eddy at September 18, 2013 2:46 PM
Good comments, eddy. I agree that the Nest mount and the gap in the riser are probably nitpicks, but for $2 million and above, I would think all details are not to be missed. (At least I would demand that of my $2.0 million).
It is the first time I've seen that built-in wine cooler on the island. Not sure about the practicality, but it sure is a conversation starter. Sets the tone of the party if that cooler is ever not filled.
Posted by: jack at September 18, 2013 3:12 PM
Milkshake, look again. That tree is definitely gone...it used to obscure nearly half the façade. Hopefully it was at least replaced with a sapling out of frame, and no doubt not a ficus, which is a pretty crappy street tree IMHO
Posted by: curmudgeon at September 18, 2013 4:04 PM
It's not too far gone... or at least it wasn't gone when they took the interior photos. You can see it just outside the front window. Also, if you look at the "after" front of the house, you can see the reflection in the windows. Someone might want to call Ghost(Tree)Hunters -- looks like a Photoshop haunting.
Posted by: steve at September 18, 2013 4:33 PM
How about the fact that you have to walk through a bedroom to get to the back yard on both floors? Not good design in my view.
Posted by: rockne at September 18, 2013 4:57 PM
OMG Steve you're right. Photoshop bombed again...
Posted by: curmudgeon at September 18, 2013 5:04 PM
LOL. I'm glad Socketsite regulars solved the puzzle of the missing ficus as it saved me a drive-by to check. I was astounded this property was able to remove such a large tree.
In my neighborhood, a homeowner got a permit for a garage curb-cut but couldn't remove the tree due to a neighbor's protest.
Posted by: Jackson at September 18, 2013 7:18 PM
Good call on the inability to sit at the island due to the drawers in the way. I have to admit I like the floors. What is up with the TV being boxed in to the left of the fireplace? That looks completely wonky.
I want 2 dishwasher drawers, not one.
Posted by: Lori at September 18, 2013 7:46 PM
Not a fan of the ficus as a specimen, but it's a shame they were able to cut down a mature tree. The city has way too many paved over, treeless streets as it is.
As an aside, how were they able to also get that merge sign removed too?
Posted by: unplugged at September 19, 2013 8:47 AM
As other commenters have pointed out, the tree has NOT been removed. The after picture was taken with a wide-angle lens from a spot much closer up than the before picture (probably from about even with the trees) so that the trees don't appear. No Photoshop involved. (Same trick used by all realtors to make interiors look much bigger than they are. Look closely at the before and after pictures as well as Google streetview and you will see - paying close attention to the lines in the sidewalk and the position water meter cover. As someone pointed out, you can also still see the tree through the windows from the living room. IMO, a lot of trouble with the camera to get a closeup of a facade that was ruined in the renovation.
Posted by: Steve at September 19, 2013 9:58 AM
Okay, that's it. Someone needs to do a drive-by.
I did "look closely and the before and after." Google street view is irrelevant.
The after shot shows, even close up, as far as I can tell, the entire sidewalk just up to the curb in front of the home. It shows the portion of the adjacent home including the garage. The tree's branches should project in front of that home as well as the corner of the home in question. I don't see how even a mega-fish eye lens shot could hide that.
Posted by: unplugged at September 19, 2013 10:15 AM
Google street view is the most relevant to clearly understand what's going on because you can see the position of the water meter cover relative to the tree and then compare that with the before and after pics. You can even see a tiny bit of the tree well in the lower left hand corner of one of the after shots and a bit of the canopy of the tree in another.
Posted by: Steve at September 19, 2013 10:26 AM
Okay. Just figured out the definite answer - yes, Steve, you're right - the ficus is still there. If you look at the INTERIOR shot of the LR, the tree is clearly visible through the windows.
Posted by: unplugged at September 19, 2013 11:35 AM
They couldn't remove the tree but they were able to take out most of the building's charm.
Posted by: Steve at September 19, 2013 1:29 PM
I'll be a contrarian and say that I like the overall transformation on the inside. Yes, it is modern and devoid of original character but at least the palette is warm, materials/details are decent, and the abundance of natural light a real asset.
The counter overhang is odd -- impossible to sit at, except sideways. BTW, the counter appears to be White Macaubus quartzite (more durable than marble).
I too see no need why they removed some of the exterior details, but it did look like the lower part of the facade was in poor condition.
Posted by: Gur at September 19, 2013 1:34 PM
Those trees I think are one of the reasons this home is not doing so well. They create an extremely dark shadow over the house and are virtually up against the living room window. It's just far too big.
Posted by: Willow at September 19, 2013 3:12 PM
Really nice finishes. But some weird choices in design, given they seemed to have taken it down to the studs, that they could've avoided. The access to the yard from bedrooms. The tub in the shower (try keeping those corners free of mildew). The hot tub with a view of the underside of a deck. The microwave a foot off the ground.
I dunno, it just seems like one of those places that wow you at first and then you live in it and the little stuff would start to get to you.
But mainly, it seems like this house is designed for maybe a pair of childless professionals, but the Noe-ish location and 3 bedrooms seems to be geared to another market.
Posted by: jenofla at September 19, 2013 3:24 PM
Ran by the house on a morning jog...happy to report both the large tree AND the merge sign are still safely in place and untouched (except by photoshop)...
Posted by: no_ vally at September 20, 2013 9:21 AM
Your caption for the house is funny because I remember it from an open house the first time around before the people that bought it and were forclosed on and there was the a speakeasy bar in the downstairs. It was very cool. Given the proclivity for and interest in cocktails today, they should have kept it.
The comments about the loss of charm in the interior and particularly on the exterior are spot on.
So much short-sightedness in loosing the vernacular in San Francisco residential architecture from this group of money grubbers that are trolling the City looking to flip and move on.
Posted by: noe mom at September 20, 2013 9:23 AM
I would have to disagree with the comments about the exterior. I prefer the more contemporary Mediterranean look than the original design. Looks a lot classier now. All that original character and charm probably looks great if you're an old cat lady who puts flower wallpaper everywhere. A new owner would not go through the expense of turning it back to the way it was, that makes no sense, they would clearly just buy another house where the city mandated that the exterior stays original.
After seeing the extent of work that went into making this place structurally sound and much improved, the new owners will have peace of mind in knowing they have a pretty much brand new home, not one that is hiding decades of shoddy work covered up by plaster and decoration.
Posted by: John at September 24, 2013 7:19 PM
Yes, there will always be a submarket where the Venn diagram ovals of "Want to live in SF" intersect "want new house" and gut rebuilds of older homes are about the only way.
I also agree that older homes have the risk of concealed surprises though there are plenty that have a great lineage of owners who've maintained them well. You can almost tell one from the other with a cursory tour.
It's more ecologically sound to build well and maintain well than to destroy and rebuild. Half of the "fixers" up for sale in SF aren't in need of a drastic remod. But the market still calls. Producer, meet consumer.
Posted by: The Milkshake of Despair at September 24, 2013 7:43 PM