Can anyone recommend a good first time home buyer program, class, or seminar? Especially one geared to SF and or peninsula?

Asked by First Time Buyer, San Francisco, CA Thu Mar 18, 2010

Looking for something that might be on the weekend, very difficult to get to an evening class. Something other than the Mayor's Office program. Thank you in advance.

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Raziel Ungar, Agent, Burlingame, CA
Mon Mar 29, 2010
Hello First Time Buyer,

You may be interested in the HomeBuying 101 course taught at City College of San Francisco, and it's on a weekend. The next one coming up is Saturday, April 17th, from 9 am to 12:30 pm.

To register for the class, visit the link below, and click "Business and Finance" in the upper left and then scroll down to HomeBuying 101. (Class #: FP302)
1 vote
Hannah Flieg…, Agent, Larkspur, CA
Sun Apr 11, 2010
Home Buyers Seminar FREE
Saturday, April 17th
10:00 a.m to Noon
101 Nellen Avenue
Corte Madera, CA 94925
415-599-5028 Lydia Puller
Alain Pinel Realtor
0 votes
NA, , San Francisco, CA
Mon Mar 22, 2010
0 votes
Colleen Cott…, Agent, San Francisco, CA
Sun Mar 21, 2010
I think it is always a good idea to consult directly with an agent, they will be able to directly answer your questions and should provide you with a solid overview of the Buying process. If you don't know any agents, I would ask friends if they have refferals for you. Also, the San Francisco market is very different than the Peninsula, so I would speak with different agents for the two different markets.

0 votes
Rob Regan, Agent, San Francisco, CA
Fri Mar 19, 2010
The actual act of Buying a home is the easy part - we Realtors do it every day and walk first time home buyers through the process all the time.... from Offer to Close of Escrow. In any intial meeting we can explain the process and/or you can buy a how-to book, and of course we keep explaining every step of the way, and prepare you for each next step. It may seem complicated if you've never done it before, but it really is not if you're working with a professional.

On the other hand, getting to know your own wants and needs, getting comfortable with what's available in your price range, and then finding the right home for you.... well, that's tricky part. No seminar will help you with that, you really just need to see as many properties as you can.

Once you've got a decent idea of what's out there that's in your price range that you like, then I'd recommend going out with a Realtor. Not only have we seen thousands of homes, we've seen them through many other Buyers and Sellers eyes, and can help point out things that might help or hurt re-sale value that might not otherwise occur to you.

The last step before the offer is asking your agent to prepare a "CMA" or value report on the home you are interested in (taking into consideration all it's features) so that you are comfortable with the amount you choose to offer. The rest of the process again is something a good agent can help you through as you go.

Happy House Hunting
0 votes
Nancy Corsaut, Agent, San Francisco, CA
Thu Mar 18, 2010
Hello First Time Buyer,

I offer a no obligation Free Home Buyer's Seminar on Wednesday evenings from 6:30 - 8:00. I also offer this seminar/consultation on Saturdays. The information presented explains how to begin educating yourself about the current market all the way through financing your purchase. Please consult my webiste for more information and if you are interested, then get in touch and if not I wish you the best of luck.
Web Reference:
0 votes
Lorraine Mei…, Agent, San Francisco, CA
Thu Mar 18, 2010
First Time Buyer,

San Francisco is a very difficult city to purchase in at a 300K price point. The peninsula covers a lot of territory and the inventory at that price point is also limited. If you are serious about buying, you should find an agent that is willing to spend time with you and educate you on the market and what neighborhoods/areas will work at that price point and you can expect to get for your money. Interview a few agents and find one that you feel you can trust and can walk you through the home buying process. Good Luck!

Lorraine Meier Realtor®
DRE #01439005
Zephyr Real Estate
2523 California St, S.F., CA 94115
415.596.9362 Direct/Text
0 votes
Dan Chase, Home Buyer, Texas City, TX
Thu Mar 18, 2010
Allow me to post some links relating to your issue with affordable housing. Some may not apply, some will. It will be showing the state of foreclosures. It is a lot. It is worth looking at since you mentioned seeking returns on your investment. Buying now would likely do the opposite. Take from your investment.

nearly 1/5 of mortgages are underwater…
improved housing affordability only relative
s years before we see market clearing prices in the housing market.…
foreclosure sales could be higher in 3 years…
new round of foreclosures threatens housing market…
foreclosures to keep pressuring housing prices…
U.S. Foreclosure Heat Map for January 2010…
0 votes
Lance King, Agent, San Francisco, CA
Thu Mar 18, 2010
First Timer,

An experienced Broker can help you figure out what you to do/know to proceed with your first purchase. We deal with first time buyers all the time, and happy to provide references.

Best Regards,

Lance King/Managing Broker
DRE# 01384425
0 votes
First Time B…, Home Buyer, San Francisco, CA
Thu Mar 18, 2010

I am not sure how to respond to questions/comments that were answered to my question above. I hope this works... I am NOT (at this time) interested in the first time home buyer programs that are offered, too many restrictions at the time of resale and minimum opportunity to generate capital. I am interested in what a first time home buyer can actually afford and find. Really interested in something at $300K or less. But, what I have seen in the listings the choices in those areas are either in the super earthquake prone (liquification areas) areas or on the edge of SF. But I am mostly interested in how to learn everything I can first!

Thank you everyone for your responses. This is a great resource.
0 votes
Jed Lane, Agent, Petaluma, CA
Thu Mar 18, 2010
My work has always made clear that every buyer is different. first time buyer classes cover basic information and everyone finds some of it pertinent but few find most of it pertinent. It is a method that some agents use to meet clients and it works as a way for prospective clients to look at agents too.
You’ve mentioned the BMR program from the MOH here and in other posts. Are you looking for first time buyer assistance programs or are you looking to find out what you can do on your own?
0 votes
Callista She…, Agent, San Francisco, CA
Thu Mar 18, 2010
Hi there, you've received some good answers so far. I have no idea what your maximum income is... but if you income qualify as a First-time Homebuyer the City of San Francisco has some programs that could be interesting to you.

Also, there are excellent homebuyer/homeownership educational resources available thru many of our local community groups... to start you off I can recommend:

MEDA (Mission Economic Development Association)
They have homeownership courses and other resources that will prepare you amply and their counselors are a wealth of information able to direct you to other resources as need.

My business partner, John Oliver, and I specialize in working with first-time homebuyers and Johnny knows many of the homebuyer programs like the back of his hand.

Let me know if you'd like to have a conversation to explore some options,

0 votes
Mike Ackerman…, Agent, San Francisco, CA
Thu Mar 18, 2010
Dear First Time Buyer,

We often have classes sponsored by our agents at our 24th Street Noe Valley Zephyr office.

Every Wednesday from 6 - 7 pm - 415-695-7707

And a special Sunday seminar on April 11th from 11 - 12 noon - 415-695-7707

No obligation, come on over to the Noe Valley and hear some of our seasoned agents speak giving you insight into buying San Francisco real estate.


Mike Ackerman, CRS
Zephyr Real Estate, Noe Valley
4040 24th Street
San Francisco, CA 94114
415-695-2715 -
Web Reference:
0 votes
Dan Chase, Home Buyer, Texas City, TX
Thu Mar 18, 2010
Below you will find things that may not come up in a home buying class but should.

Does it economically make more sense to rent or to buy? Plug in your numbers and find out.…

Sometimes paying more renting can make sense. An opposing viewpoint. (really, worth reading)…
A basic overview of the home buying process. SImple and easy to understand.…
Things to know that could avoid a house becoming a nightmare. Problems realtors seldom mention are below.…
0 votes
Peter Brunton, , San Francisco, CA
Thu Mar 18, 2010
Hi First Time Home Buyer,

I would be glad to put together a program for you and discuss your options during the weekend. Feel free to contact me at or call 415 728 5580.

Peter Brunton
Prudential CA Realty
415 728 5580
DRE 01789498
0 votes
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