645 Hyde Street
We know, we know, “unreinforced masonry” and San Francisco aren’t exactly a match made in heaven. And we have no idea what this one actually looks like inside. But we do have a soft spot for unique buildings/spaces in the city. And 645 Hyde Street fits the bill.
∙ Listing: 645 Hyde (3/1.5) – $965,000 [MLS]
ABAG Shaken Awake Report [Association of Bay Area Governments]

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Comments from “Plugged-In” Readers

  1. Posted by Paul E. Ester

    Strange no pictures of the inside and I would never think to call an alley/driveway a “courtyard”. This place is in the tenderloin which is currently in a murderous gang war between east bay gangs for control of the hard drug market. The loin is not a neighborhood troubled by strung out suburban kids selling nuggets and sleeping in the park. The residents here are crack zombies.
    On the plus side it’s near one of the best bars called Lush.
    Google street view also shows a massive smokestack rising from behind the building, it is missing in the MLS pictures.
    You can invest in this “home”, but remember it’s Kamela and Heather who are protecting you and your investment, add that to your expenses.

  2. Posted by redseca2

    I love the look of buildings like this, but as a registered Architect, and a member of the governor’s OES for earthquake emmergency response, I have sipped the un-reinforced masonry in SF cool-aid.
    If I wanted to live in one, I would have to move to the east coast.

  3. Posted by eddy

    Does the city have and slack for fast-tracking renovations on these type of UMRs? $1M for the lot even and it seems like it has potential

  4. Posted by blahhh

    Something funny about the “garage” gate… How did they manage to close it with the car blocking the way?

  5. Posted by BGelldawg

    There is absolutely nothing “quiet” about this location. That is the last word they should be using in their listing.
    Before bidding on this, potential buyers should spend an evening in the neighborhood with the deisel busses, traffic, sirens, and people screaming on the street.
    They are hiding something by not posting photos of the interior.

  6. Posted by Miles

    There are no UMB requirements for retrofitting single family homes – all that legislation (and some city financing) was for commercial buildings and apartments and the vast majority of that is done as the last deadline for retrofitting passed a few years ago if I recall. However, retrofitting a one story UMB is a lot easier than a multi-story property, so they have that going for them. You’re going to have to back out a pretty big chunck of change for the retrofitting and the time and effort to do it. Usually UMBs sell at a pretty big discount which doesn’t seem to be the case here – especially for that location, so we’ll see what happens. And oh yeah, I’m pretty sure that smokestack is for one of the city’s steam heat generation plants (there’s another one at 6th/Jessie) – some of the older buildings in the downtown area still are heated by city provided steam heat – apparently it’s cheaper than PG&E. Not sure what they use to fire the plant – natural gas would be my guess – but still, you probably don’t want to be near or down wind of the result of that power generating process.

  7. Posted by Sal

    I hadn’t realized until I went checking around on this SFH that “Unreinforced masonry buildings of single family occupancy and multi-unit apartments containing less than five dwelling units or guest rooms used solely for residential purposes are exempted from the current UMB Ordinance.”
    I thought that all the UMBs at least needed to be upgraded when the property changed hands.
    What an educational morning I’ve had!
    re the stack shown in Google Maps view. The stack hasn’t been ‘shopped out of the MLS pictures. The pictures have just been carefully cropped.
    Same with the view from 920 Post, up Meacham.
    Tsk. ’tis a fine line between showing a property in its best light and purposefully misleading the prospective buyer.

  8. Posted by Miles

    Whoops – this property is two stories so it’s tougher to retrofit – get out the checkbook.

  9. Posted by Sal

    re the stack in the Google maps view:
    NRG Thermal writeup:
    “Station S. Located at 1 Meacham Place. Equipped with three boilers: one in operation producing 65,000 lb/hr of steam and two that are installed and permitted but not currently in use. All boilers are fueled 100 percent by natural gas; No. 2 diesel is available as a backup fuel.”

  10. Posted by redseca2

    I hate to say it but I will:
    The difference between a retro-reinforced masonry building and an unreinforced masonry building is like the difference between a 50 MPH crash in car with airbags and a crash in a car without airbags:
    You will probably survive in the car with airbags but the car will still be totalled.

  11. Posted by Mole Man

    Given the limitations of the existing structure and the potential draw of an intensive green roof it seems like a rebuild is in order. Even if preserving the front it might be best to take pictures first and then render the same thing later with upgraded materials. Photos from the air show an almost entirely desertified urban environment with harsh pavement and roofing and little else.

  12. Posted by Jim D

    Only two blocks from some of the finest transexual prostitutes in SF. (Not that there’s anything wrong with that.) Sheesh, who’d pay $1m to live there? Definitely an interesting neighborhood, though, for someone young enough to handle the somewhat rough and tumble Tenderloin. But $1 million?

  13. Posted by artsybroad

    Gosh, i pay a LOT less than that right now to live in the Mission with crackheads, gang-bangers, and prostitutes. At least there i can walk to great restaurants and coffee. A small consolation, but a consolation nonetheles…

  14. Posted by c1200

    This is a lot for sale that just happens to have a strange little brick structure on it that the new owner can occupy or rent while waiting to get the permits to tear down said brick structure and build mult-family housing.
    The building next to it, however, 647 Hyde, is amazing, and not just for its existence in that location. Also, a few doors down is an 11 or 12 unit apartment building that was sold a couple of years ago with an interesting 2 story penthouse on top. The new owners painted the outside and put it back on the market for a price that was met with complete silence.
    The block is an interesting little subsection of the ‘loin, not without merit (a few grand old apartment buildings around the corner on Geary, enough hipster cred to warrant several new upscale bars in the immediate vicinity), although certainly plagued by a lot of the same stuff as every other block in the area. Just pointing out that there is a difference between the corner of Hyde at Geary and the corner of Leavenworth at Eddy.

  15. Posted by redseca2

    I used to explain the difference between being fully vested in a retirement plan versus not bothering as:
    the difference between an SRO on Geary Blvd versus a studio apartment on Post.

  16. Posted by Miles

    You might want to check what you get for that retrofitting as well – a lot of retrofitting standards are intended only to keep the roof/floors above you from collapsing on you. In the event of an earthquake, the brick walls will fall down (hint, stay away from brick walls during an earthquake) and the building will likely be uninhabitable afterwards. Retrofitting standards are mainly concerned with avoiding casualties during an earthquake, not in keeping the building intact.

  17. Posted by Michael

    Diamond in the rough for someone….

  18. Posted by reader

    The last time it was purchased in 2003, it went for $596k.

  19. Posted by Sal

    Interior pictures have been added to the listing as well as a picture of the parking area with the car =inside= and the gate shut (although how they managed that is still a question).
    Coinkydink or does someone connected with the listing read socketsite?

  20. Posted by Shiva

    I just noticed that the price has been further reduced to 800K on Zephyr’s listing of this unusual house.

  21. Posted by SocketSite

    645 Hyde closed escrow on 2/29/08 with a contract price of $800,000 (17% under asking).

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