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Home Buying in Mission Bay : Real Estate Advice

  • All53
  • Local Info4
  • Home Buying32
  • Home Selling2
  • Market Conditions5

Activity 30
Tue Mar 28, 2017
Kory Powell-McCoy answered:
HI there! I'm a real estate professional specializing here, in San Francisco. I do not work for One Mission Bay, but I do have some knowledge of the project.

I have toured the project, talked to their representatives, and recieved an "insiders" overview including pricing structure, and amenities. They are about 52% sold (as of a week ago) and have great opportunities to buy on all levels of the project. They are offering "resort like" amenities with remarkably reasonable HOA dues.

I can tell you more about the project, the area, or future developments if you'd like. Do you have a specific question?
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0 votes 2 answers Share Flag
Wed Oct 26, 2016
Sf_pilates answered:
Aren't the condos built in Mission Bay sitting on Landfill? That's an important consideration since experts have warned that there will be another big earthquake in the near future. Also, I've heard about the Milleinium Tower sinking 16 inches. Good to be aware of with any new construction for large condo developments. Just something to keep in mind although I don't know a lot about the different developments in Mission Bay. ... more
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Fri Mar 6, 2015
Ryan Rudnick answered:
While the building is sold out there are definitely other comparable buildings in the area that have available units. Most buildings in the neighborhood sell for $1200+ per foot. Let me know if theres anything I can do to help you with your house hunt!
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Sun Jul 20, 2014
Camila Da Silva answered:
Dear Roman,

As the previous agent mentioned below, I also haven't seen BMRs (below market rate ) affect condos value anywhere in San Francisco. Also, just for you to have an idea, I checked some data from last year (May 20013), and the median sales price for condos in SF were $825,500 compare to $952,500 - May 2014 (Source: San Francisco Association of Realtors). I hope this was helpful. Take care! ... more
0 votes 2 answers Share Flag
Sat Apr 26, 2014
kfriedle answered:
I inherited a house worth $840,000 in San Francisco, I was told I would have to pay 1% of it's value annually in property. Is that right?
0 votes 8 answers Share Flag
Sun Jan 19, 2014
Abhishek Dhawan answered:
Thanks everyone for your answers.

@Aaron: I sent you an email at Please respond at your convenience. I look forward to hearing from you.


0 votes 9 answers Share Flag
Sat Mar 23, 2013
kLeesf81 answered:
Hi - i'm also in the market and have done 18 months of research. here is what i've found - 255 and 235 Berry (Both built by Signature) condos are the best built, highest quality on the street. I'd give them an A+ rating. I personally think they are undervalued even at current prices. Here is how i would rank the other condos in the area - Again with 235 and 255 as the A+ standard. - Park Terrace/325 Berry A minus (not as nice as 255 and 235 but still nice). Fit and finish good but not as high and not quite as close to the more desirable part of Berry street. Arterra - B+ . Madrone B+ (similar high end construction to 255 and 235 Berry but not as close and only T line accessible vs. T & N line, Caltrain and 280 access like Berry). Radiance - B Minus. In answer to your other questions, I asked the many police who frequent the Philz coffee on Berry and they said there is little to no crime compared to SOMA/Mission. At the end of the day you cannot go wrong with a purchase on Berry street but if you can afford it, buy at 255 and 235 Berry first. If you can't , the others are still good investments. Hope this helps and hope we can find a unit soon. I'm frustrated with the lack of inventory. Good luck! ... more
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Thu Aug 30, 2012
Peter T. Chin answered:
I will give you some pros and cons, but as for the question of long term investment, this should be decided between you and your hired realtor after due diligence.

When I first saw Madrone, I was impressed by the low rise development in an up and coming neighborhood with the future site of huge UCSF Hospital and current and future life sciences there.

I am still impressed by the development, but there are things to consider (since you have already gotten a lot of pros from others, I'll just skip to the cons):

The development is built upon landfill that used to be an industrial site for many warehouses and such; the good thing is that new developments are seismically better designed than older buildings.

Also, you should look at "superfund" sites in the environmental hazards reports for the general area.

I like the outdoor swimming pool (this is one of the largest, if not the largest outdoor pool in SF), but this swimming pool would be used for only two month out of the year at most (this may be an expense issue with the HOA'S, but then many don't care).

Renters will pay a premium to rent at Madrone, but it will only attract certain types of renters; others will be turned off by not being in the center of the city and the vast construction noise going on.

Since it is a condominium and a new develpoment, it is not subject to rent or eviction controls; but, as you may know, all evictions in California have to go through a court process or jury trial.

I think it would be best for you to see if this development is a good fit for you; it is a good fit for some people and not a good fit for others.

Peter T. Chin 01866332
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1 vote 7 answers Share Flag
Mon Jul 9, 2012
Matthew Goulden answered:
Hi Angie,

Sounds like you need a Realtor to help you, I presume you are buying at a new development by this question. It is common for the buyer to pay transfer tax on this type of property, but everything is negotiable.

Remember this, new developers will pay your agent fees for you and no extra amount in the price of the property, they just like to represent both sides and save some $$$
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Fri Jul 6, 2012
Gabriel Rojas answered:
Hello Sylvia,

The best way to answer this question is to all depends. First, an agent/Realtor cannot legally give financial advice. I am a former coop owner in Manhattan and did pay a transfer tax when I sold it 3 years ago. I would recommend calling a local agent or tax professional there in New York. If you need a referral for either, I would be happy to help.

Here is some info I hope you find helpful:

New York State imposes a real estate transfer tax on conveyances of real property or interests therein when the consideration exceeds $500.

Tax rate:

Tax is computed at a rate of two dollars for each $500, or fractional part thereof, of consideration.

An additional real estate transfer tax (sometimes referred to as the "mansion tax") of 1% of the sale price applies to residences where consideration is $1 million or more.

Who pays the tax?

The tax is paid by the grantor (seller). However, if the grantor doesn't pay the tax, or is exempt from the tax, the grantee (buyer) must pay the tax.

The additional 1% real estate transfer tax is paid by the grantee. If the grantee is exempt, the grantor must pay the tax.

File and pay tax

File Form TP-584, Combined Real Estate Transfer Tax Return, Credit Line Mortgage Certificate, and Certification of Exemption from the Payment of Estimated Personal Income Tax, with the county clerk where the real property being transferred is located. The form is due no later than the 15th day after the delivery of the deed or similar legal document.
If the deed or document isn't being recorded, file Form TP-584 and pay any tax due directly to the Tax Department no later than the 15th day after the delivery of documents.

Best of luck to you!

Gabriel Rojas
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0 votes 1 answer Share Flag
Mon Jan 2, 2012
Rich Bennett answered:
Hi Newbuyer-

This is a very difficult question to answer. If you, as a buyer, have a sensativity to noise or are concerned that the rental value of your unit would be compromised, I would suggest buying a unit as far away from it as possible.

Happy New Year.

Rich Bennett, Realtor

Zephyr Real Estate
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Fri May 21, 2010
Cheryl Bower answered:
Hi Steve,

Your best place to start is with your Realtor! If you’ve not hired one yet for the purchase process, I recommend interviewing a few and selecting someone who is experienced in the property types that you are interested in.

I’ve personally been buying fixers-renovators for close to 20 years. Renovation costs can swing drastically all depending on the finishes and how much prep work is needed. It’s not uncommon to open a wall or demo a bathroom to find a bigger project then one anticipated because of undetected issues such as dry rot, termites, etc.

There is only so much that a pest inspector/home inspector can detect during home buying inspections. These undetected surprises along with change orders during a project can really throw off a budget.

If you’re handy, there are a lot of cosmetic projects that one can do, such as painting, refinishing wood floors, changing fixtures where you can really save money. Sweat equity was a big part of my early renovation projects.

It goes without saying to not attempt work that you’re not experienced in such as plumbing, electrical, foundation. You also need to be aware of what types of work require permits.

An agent can provide a tremendous amount of feedback/suggestions as to appropriate improvements to a property, how not to over improve for the neighborhood, choice of finishes, how to improve a floor plan and how not to make the space too personalized a la “Tacky House” which can impact resale value (this of course depends on how long one is planning to live in the property; is it a stepping stone to the next place or a long term 5+ year settle in plan).

I have great contractors that I’ve been working with for years for all the mentioned projects that you are inquiring about.

I’ve personally renovated rooms, most recently bathrooms, on the cheap for a rental property:

As well as redone bathrooms down to the studs for a full facelift. Cost for each approach ranged from $3000 to $14,000.

I have a few recommended resources on Yelp:

Good luck!

Cheryl Bower, Realtor , GRI, ABR
Cell 415.999.3450
Zephyr Real Estate
DRE#: 01505551
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0 votes 6 answers Share Flag
Mon Apr 26, 2010
Gloria Matthews answered:
Hi Mark, I am an agent outside your area and I love NEW Construction. Certainly there are agents in your area that do new construction as well. Most either dont have the experience (have never done it), or dont want to wait 90-120 days to get paid...silly...its not about when and how much a realtor gets paid, its about doing the right job for each individual as their needs and goals are.

Personally, I think its a GREAT time to BUILD. In my area (portand, or and Vancouver, Wa), the unsold speculative building is GONE and most of the new construction is build to suit.

Find a realtor, who will find you land in the area you want, and familiar enough with the builders to match you with a builder in your general price range. the very least one who will scan the MLS for "new".

Many of the builders will pay a realtor ONLY if the realtor is present on the first visit. So, find a qualified realtor, committ to them with an agency agreement and committ to the process (when you are ready)
...YOU"ll get what you want. Many people put finding a house first, when finding the right realtor can streamline the whole process and save you TIME and MONEY.

Additionally? I personally think building now is great for our economy, jobs, and putting people to work.

Good Luck.
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Mon Apr 12, 2010
Michael Robertson answered:

I would recommend Jason Chapin in my office. His number is 415-901-2816. He specializes in BMR properties and knows all the in's and outs.

Good luck.

Michael W Robertson
McGuire Real Estate
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Tue Mar 23, 2010
Misha Weidman answered:
HI Claire: I have a series of blog posts that both explain the basics of TIC ownership and also chart the difference in value between TIC's and condos. They're entitled: "TIC's: San Francisco's Involuntary Reflex." You can find the first of my posts here, and just click on the TIC tag to find others:
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Tue Jan 5, 2010
Paul Hwang answered:
If you hold 5-7 years, I think you will be fine. I think however there may be better choices.

I have represented a lot of buyers / sellers (40+ Infintiy, 20+ One Rincon Hill, Metropolitan, Watermark, etc.) in SoMa / South Beach and hope I will have the opporutnity to show you what SoMa has to offer. If you give me 2 hours of your time I will give you back a personal tour of SoMa, and the reasons why I think SoMa is so great.

Paul Hwang
Your SoMa / South Beach Super Broker
Skybox Realty
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Tue Jan 5, 2010
Paul Hwang answered:
It happens all the time, and I believe it usually is a conflict. Sometimes things end up unpleasantly and sometimes the developer is very responsible.

If you elect a strong board, everything will work out in the end.

Paul Hwang
Your SoMa / South Beach Super Broker
Skybox Realty
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Tue Jan 5, 2010
Paul Hwang answered:
It's probably not right now. See how Q1 2010 shapes up, and go from there.

Paul Hwang
Your SoMa / South Beach Super Broker
Skybox Realty
0 votes 8 answers Share Flag
Tue Jan 5, 2010
Erika Burke answered:
The SOMA (South of Market) Neighborhood is an interesting amalgamation of housing, from some single famiy homes, converted lofts, condos, residential new construction and warehouse/industrial business. Therefore the type of property that you are looking for will dictate the price per square foot.

Judging the cost of prperty on price per square foot is tricky in San Francisco, unless you are strictly dealing with new construction. Sometimes you can get "alot of house or condo" for a low square foot price, depending upon it's location, condition and type of housing. A unit in a TIC may be between $400-$600 per square foot. A Fixer may be $400 to $500 per square foot. Condos may be $500 per SF and above. Where new construction could be anywhere from $500 per SF to $800 per SF.

Find a good agent who can ask the right questions, help you identify what YOUR needs are and then find the best value in the price range you are willing to purchase in. If one of the reasons you are asking is you plan to buy low and sell high, or you are looking to gain equity quicly, then make sure your agent knows that too.

San Francisco is one the great cities, where your home improvements will likely result in a return on that improvement investment, which can be a way for you to increase your price per SF or the equity and resale value of your property.

A comparative market anlaysis can give you a median price per square foot - but it may not be an accurate depiction of that figure given all of the above explanations. You can sign up for a property search engine like the Vanguard Insider on my website, and track the market yourself - which can also help you determine values in a given area.
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Fri Jul 10, 2009
Jed Lane answered:
I usually tell buyers it is 1.2% knowing that is higher than actual but that way your budget can't be suprised. It is actually 1.163% based on sale price which is the basis that is used by the assessor.

When you buy there is a day when you close escrow. At that point everything is prorated so if hte seller hasn't paid the taxes or even if they aren't due the seller pays up till that day and you take over from there.

Typically the City doesn't get everything together right away so you will end up paying the sellers tax rate for a while then you will get a new tax bill and you will also get a "supplemental" tax bill that is to collect the amount you owe at the new rate from the date of close of escrow.
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