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Market Conditions in San Francisco : Real Estate Advice

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  • Home Buying987
  • Home Selling131
  • Market Conditions81

Activity 128
Mon Dec 17, 2007
Gregory Hayes Garver answered:
RJ, what are you looking at buying? An apartment or home? If an apartment, how many units? I can get you a pretty accurate number with a few details.
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Tue Dec 11, 2007
K Feat answered:
Br -- NOPA is definitely still a hot neighborhood and from the activity that I've seen in the past 6 months will likely be a popular area to rent or buy. If you drive around the area you can see a lot of renovation of Victorian and Edwardian flats taking place, which likely means they will be rented or offered for sale in the near future. Looking at the overall condo/TIC inventory for NOPA in the past 6 months, there were/are 65 listings. Of that, 33 of those have sold since and currently 11 are "active" properties. The average listing price was approximately $790k and the average sales price was approximately $812k. That is for all properties active, in contract or sold since June 13th. ... more
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Tue Dec 11, 2007
Mark Choey answered:
Good question however, I think Mission Bay has the greatest potential in my opinion. Mission Bay (especially Berry St) as you know is very up-and-coming with construction projects still happening. Once the construction is done and dust clears you will what appears to be a very attractive and brand new, modern community near perhaps the most convenient transportation hub in all of San Francisco - 4th and King. There you see the Caltrain terminus, the start of 280, a very nearby 101, good East Bay access, the N-Judah ending there, many many bus lines, the new 3rd Street Rail and the future Central Subway line.

New retail stores have just opened including Panera Bread, Philz coffee, 2 new floors of commercial space atop the China Basin Building, new tennis and basketball courts on Berry St, the 1st branch of the SF Public Library on 4th and Berry St.

235 Berry, Park Terrace are finishing up sales (12 and 20+ left respectively) - Arterra is around 50% at this point. So you could also make the argument that there could be a lot of competing condos and not enough demand for them - but I think in 5 years there will be enough jobs created in that area to make it the best investment for the next 5 years.

In 5 years, South Mission Bay will see a large influx of new companies and jobs and North Mission Bay will benefit the most from this.

You can make the argument that since Potrero Hill will have very few new condo projects in the next 5 years that a constrained supply would make it the best investment - however, I don't see much change in the area to warrant a dramatic change in demand for Potrero Hill condos as there could be for Mission Bay for example.

SOMA is just too big of an area to discuss - certain areas in SOMA could be good and others not so good - it just depends where in SOMA you are referring to? Closer to the financial district (south financial district) could be a good area and closer to what we call "Mid-Market" or near SOMA Grand, Mint Plaza, etc. could be a good investment in the next 5 years as well.

But I think the BEST investment would be Mission Bay and specifically NORTH Mission Bay centered around Berry St.

Hope this helps!
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Tue Apr 29, 2008
Paul Hazlett answered:
Well, Sam, I know nothing about that area. But from what I see the extremely high prices must come down. Many years ago one of my former co-workers moved to that area. The only house he could afford was 50 miles from his work site. He was so strapped for money he had to ride a motorbike to work ... more
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Wed Mar 9, 2011
Jed Lane answered:
Yes! Potrero will do very well with the completion of UCSF's hospital, bio research and other assorted businesses going in to Mission Bay. That area will be transformed into a very busy and dynamic area. Proximity of housing will then go for a premium for everyone that wants avoid commuting. ... more
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Tue Dec 11, 2007
Melanie Narducci answered:
The Ritz Carlton is an international brand, as is The Four Seasons and the St Regis -- both the Four Seasons and the St Regis have done very well in their initial sales and in re-sales, in fact they rarely have units available. The Ritz sold well -- I think there are only a couple of units left, and it's not yet finished -- and there are a couple of resales up now. The Ritz is a great brand, and it's well located for shopping Union Square. High end projects like this continue to do well, and this is the only project offering fractional ownership. ... more
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Wed Nov 7, 2007
Noevalleyjim answered:
How about The Panhandle, or NoPa as real estate agents are calling it these days? I guess it depends on where you go to school. You can also probably find a place in the Inner Sunset or Ingleside for that price, but I don't know how cool they are. I would avoid Bayview, unless you know some people there. ... more
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Mon Nov 5, 2007
Mary Fenton answered:
People seem to be asking that question a lot lately. I am currently selling a loft in Potrero Hill; we have an offer date set for tomorrow and I will keep you posted. I can give you the statistics of how many sold for under, over, and at asking for the past six months if that's what you are looking for, but it may not help you in your search. The reason being that people price their homes differently. Some use the strategy of pricing low to generate interest, some price it where they want it to sell, and others according to their perceived value of their home which may not always be a correct market value.

If I were to tell you that prices generally go over asking in Potrero, but you had your sites set on a condo that is overpriced, I wouldn't want you to blindly overbid because that is the neighborhood trend. Instead you need to look at the comparables, determine the value for yourself, and offer accordingly. You can also get a sense from the listing agent about the activity and interest. That will let you know if there will be any competition.

Alas, if it is numbers you are looking for, in the last six months there were 33 condos that sold in Potrero Hill. Only six of those sold under the asking price, and five of those were at the low end of the price spectrum. Four properties sold at asking, and the remaining 23 condos sold over asking. I hope that helps.
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Wed Oct 31, 2007
Laury Macauley answered:
Obviously, no one can say for sure where specific prices will go, but your guess is certainly on target with those of many professionals. The California Association of Realtors predicts that 2008 will be the low in the overall CA market and then prices will rise after that. However, that doesn't mean that prices in SF or in any specific community will wait that long to rise. All in all, if you don't need to sell now, I would wait until at least Spring when more buyers will be on the market. Just my 2 cents! ... more
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Thu Oct 25, 2007
Patti Phillips answered:
Tomas, If you have a lot of equity in it right off the bat and can afford to hold it for a while if needed, then yes. It would be a bit risky in this market however. I am advising my CA. investors to only buy right now if they intend to hold on to the property for quite a while, otherwise, for flipping and quick money to invest in other states.

Patti Phillips
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Fri Jun 24, 2011
Antony Chiang answered:
My good friend, Mark Choey specializes in properties in SOMA, South Beach, and Mission Bay. And especially condos. He told me that the market in those areas are still strong despite the national weakness. Especially premium properties, well staged, are getting multiple offers. He can provide so much more specifics and comps (he's closed on a number of transactions this month). His contact info is at:
He's a great guy, and I highly recommend him.
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Fri May 25, 2012
Sylvia Barry, MAS,CIPS,SRES answered:
I don't know if there is a standard commercial lease broker commission is S.F. But I do know that the percentage of commission goes up with lower total lease price.

9% for around $120,000 lease is within range.

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Wed Oct 31, 2007
Mario Pinedo, Ccim answered:
The Bay Area and especially San Francisco is a different market than the rest of the country right now. SF is doing very well - jobs are up, home values are steady, the overall economy is strong. There IS a softness in the South Beach, China Basin condo market right now, although that is not a long term situation. I think that place will come back very strong well within your timeframe. In fact probably within a year to two years. I feel this is a great opportunity time to be buying in that market. ... more
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Tue Mar 8, 2011
Infinity Realty Network answered:
Depends on the area, with strong growth and a continued increase in jobs daily. The bay area doing really well. Like all Real Estate markets it is area specific.
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Mon Jun 16, 2014
Mario Pinedo, Ccim answered:
This is a great time to be buying. Yes, the market will get a lot more condos. What is important to consider is that most of the buildings will continue to be more luxurious and will continue to push prices. Also, as the neighborhood matures, over the next 5 years, values will go up too. It's kind of like the Wild West - where there is risk in the new neighborhood. Once it becomes a fully built out neighborhood, prices will get much heigher. ... more
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Fri Sep 28, 2007
Jed Lane answered:
Short answer is no. Unless you paid cash, had no expenses or costs and could charge current market rents.
The cap rate is found by taking the "net" operating income and dividing that by the value or purchase price.
Annual rents of $60,000 with a purchase price of $1,000,000 would give you 6% cap rate if you had no expenses.
If you put 30% down on that $1,000,000 your principle and interest payment, at 7% interest, would be over $55,000/year leaving just $5,000/year to pay insurance, repairs and cover vacancies, so your net income would actually be a negative number.
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Mon Sep 24, 2007
Mary Fenton answered:
There are currently about 50 condos available in the Mission Bay area; most of them are in five major developments. NAR reported condo prices in San Francisco as a whole to have dropped just over 5% from the second quarter to the third quarter so it seems prices have been affected. In this area in particular they also tend to have a longer time on the market than average.

Having said that, this area is not yet fully developed, and there are some very interesting things coming up that are getting a lot of attention. One is the building Arterra which is set to be San Francisco's first LEED certified residential high rise. Also the UCSF reasearch campus, once finished, will no doubt breathe life into the area. I just wrote about this area and the various developments in my blog; feel free to take a look.
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Sun Sep 16, 2007
Pam Winterbauer answered:
San Francisco is pretty much built out unless you are near the water front and south of market.
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Sun Sep 9, 2007
Sylvia Barry, MAS,CIPS,SRES answered:
Hi Ssm:

I think price in San Francisco, for that matter, Marin, will stay quite stable either short term or long term unless there is really unforeseen events happening.

The reasons are the location, location, location; the great environment, the income (higher income level), , the employment rate (going up), supply and demand, foreign investors, immigrations (quite a few cash buyer there); even with rising interests, the interest in housing here still outweigh others.

Good thing is, if you buy, you won't lose money, and housing price will still go up, especially long term.
However, keep your eyes open and be diligent, you might find a good buy here and there. Have a Realtor watches for you helps also .
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Tue Sep 4, 2007
Mr.P answered:
Hey K
It depends on your location, In Arizona, it is said that over 45% of the homes in Tempe are rentals because of ASU. Tempe is one of our stronger markets right now. However in Maricopa we have a ton of rentals and it is not very pretty out there. How is your Neighborhood? Do you have a good Location?
If it`s a popular neighborhood rentals wont matter.
Later Gator
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