With Easter Egg Hunts And Putt-ering In Mind: A Woodside Estate


If you've come to the realization that your annual Easter egg hunt is about to outgrow your backyard and you're looking for a "little" more space or retreat, perhaps you'd be interested in perusing (or putt-ering around) 437 Whiskey Hill Road.

(Continue reading: "With Easter Egg Hunts And Putt-ering In Mind: A Woodside Estate")

Readers' Comments (1) | Permalink | Email Story | Filed under: Listings (for sale), San Jose (And South)

Cranespotting In Mission Bay: Kaiser Permanente's MOB To Rise


With foundation work underway, the crane for Kaiser Permanente's modern nine-story medical office building to rise at 1600 Owens is now in place. Construction of the Mission Bay building is slated to be finished in late 2015 with Kaiser making their move in early 2016.

Readers' Comments (2) | Permalink | Email Story | Filed under: Commercial, Design & Architecture, Neighborhoods, New Developments, SocketSite Readers Report

A Blast From The Past And Back To The Future On Portola Drive

1365 Portola Drive Before

Foreclosed upon in 2010 with $1,795,000 in mortgage debt then owed and resold for $1,180,000 in 2011, the Saint Francis Woods border home at 1365 Portola Drive was refaced, renovated and returned to the market in July of 2012 listed for $1,998,000.

1365 Portola Drive 2012

Having failed to sell, the listing for 1365 Portola was withdrawn in early 2013. And today, the 3,307 square foot home is back on the market and listed for $1,990,000.

Readers' Comments (12) | Permalink | Email Story | Filed under: Apples To Apples, Design & Architecture, Listings (for sale)

San Francisco Employment Within 200 Hires Of An All-Time High


With the number of San Francisco residents with jobs having increased by 4,100 since the beginning of the year, the unemployment rate in the city has dropped to 5.2 percent and overall employment in San Francisco is within 200 hires of an all-time high.

The number of employed San Francisco residents now totals 465,300, an increase of 13,200 people with jobs over the past year, and the labor force has grown to 490,900 versus 480,000 at the end of 2000 when 465,500 people employed at the dot-com peak and the unemployment rate in the city measured 3 percent, according to California's Employment Development Department.

The unemployment rate in San Francisco topped out at a little over 10 percent in January of 2010 when 57,600 fewer San Francisco residents were employed than today.

The unemployment rate in Marin ticked down to 4.7 percent in March while the rate in San Mateo was unchanged at 5.0 percent. The unadjusted unemployment rate for California fell from 8.5 to 8.4 percent in March as the labor force increased by 64,200 and employment increased by 65,400.

Readers' Comments (1) | Permalink | Email Story | Filed under: Real Estate Economics, Trends

Dogpatch Development Refined, Ready To Be Approved

The plans to raze Café Cocomo at 650 Indiana and construct two distinct five-story buildings with a total of 111 new apartments on the Dogpatch block between 18th and 19th Streets have been refined, are ready to be approved, and will be presented to San Francisco's Planning Commission in two weeks. Click the new renderings to enlarge.

An underground garage will provide parking for 79 cars and 103 bikes and the mid-block alley between the buildings which was to be a driveway is now a landscaped space. The new entrance to the garage is behind the "660" in the rendering above.

At the southern end of the development, the dead end spur of 19th Street would become a 8,200 square foot public space connected to retail, a proposed "Decompression Plaza":

(Continue reading: "Dogpatch Development Refined, Ready To Be Approved")

Readers' Comments (15) | Permalink | Email Story | Filed under: As Proposed, Breaking News, Design & Architecture, Neighborhoods

April 17, 2014

Go Ahead, Make Your Day: SoMa Circa 1983

As a number of readers quickly noted, the McDonald's building on the corner of Third and Townsend which is on the market and primed for development was once transformed into the "Acorn Cafe," the cafe from which Clint Eastwood's Dirty Harry character would order his daily coffee and from inside which he uttered his infamous line, "Go ahead, make my day" back in 1983.

Permalink | Email Story | Filed under: Bay Buildings, Neighborhoods

SoMa McDonald's Site Up For Sale, Zoned For 105-Feet In Height


The 13,750-square foot SoMa parcel upon which McDonald's sits on the southeast corner of Third and Townsend is on the market and being shopped. McDonald's lease expires in January of 2017.

Zoned for development up to 105-feet in height, the 701 Third Street site is designated "Mixed Use-Office," which allows for office, housing and retail use, as well as hotel, light industrial and arts activities, but not adult entertainment or heavy industrial.

Readers' Comments (42) | Permalink | Email Story | Filed under: Commercial, Neighborhoods

Mortgage Rates Drop To Six-Week Low


The average rate for a conforming 30-year mortgage ticked down from 4.34 to 4.27 percent over the past week to a six-week low, 31 basis points below the three-year high rate of 4.58 percent recorded this past August.

Having averaged 6.67 percent since 1990, the average rate for a 30-year fixed mortgage was 3.41 percent at this time last year. The all-time low of 3.31 percent was recorded in November of 2012.

The National Association of Realtors Pending Home Sales Index has been dropping since June of 2013, the very month in which the average rate for a fixed 30-year mortgage returned above 4 percent for the first time since 2011.

Readers' Comments (0) | Permalink | Email Story | Filed under: Real Estate Economics, Trends

NAR Pivots To "Welcome Signs For Buyers" As Home Sales Slow

Last month, the National Association of Realtors characterized an uptick in the inventory of homes for sale across the country as a sign of "seller confidence" and "an indication of a strong early beginning to the spring home buying season."

NAR's Pending Home Sales Index subsequently fell to its lowest level since 2011.

With inventory having ticked up another 5.6 percent over the past month and currently running 9.5 percent higher - and moving 23 percent slower - on a year-over-year basis, NAR is now characterizing the upticks as "welcome signs for spring buyers."

Readers' Comments (0) | Permalink | Email Story | Filed under: Trends

April 16, 2014

Bay Area Home Sales Slow, Except In San Francisco


While Bay Area home sales were down 12.9 percent on a year-over-year basis last month, the slowest March in terms of sales volume since 2008, recorded home sales were up 8.2 percent on a year-over-year basis in San Francisco as contracts in a number of new condo buildings started to close (see last paragraph below).

That being said, sales volume in San Francisco has increased an average of 41.1 percent from February to March over the past decade and last month's gain represented a sub-par seasonal increase of 19.3 percent versus the month before.

The median price paid for a property in San Francisco was $937,500 in March, down 0.8 percent from a record $945,000 in February but 14.6 percent higher year-over-year, driven in part by an increase in the mix of higher priced home sales. As always, keep in mind that while movements in the median sale price are a great measure of what's in demand and selling, they're not a great measure of actual appreciation despite what the headlines might say.

Having peaked at $665,000 in July of 2007, the median sale price for a home in the Bay Area increased 7.2 percent to $579,000 in March, up 23.2% year-over-year and the highest median price since December of 2007. The median price had fallen to $290,000 in March of 2009.

With San Francisco the only Bay Area county to have recorded a gain, Napa recorded the second best outcome with respect to sales, dropping 8.5 percent year-over-year. Sales in Solano County were down 28.3 percent in March, the greatest Bay Area decline. The median in Solano was up 30.4 percent to $300,000 in March, the greatest Bay Area percentage gain. The median in San Mateo County was up 13.5 percent to $767,000, the smallest Bay Area gain.

As always, keep in mind that DataQuick reports recorded sales which not only includes activity in new developments, but contracts that were signed ("sold") months prior but are just now closing escrow (or being recorded) and any properties that were sold "off market."

Readers' Comments (5) | Permalink | Email Story | Filed under: East Bay, Marin (And Points North), San Jose (And South), Trends

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