1998 Vallejo #7
While wood burning fireplaces might not be environmentally correct (EC), we do love them. And even more, an old school San Francisco bridge view.
∙ Listing: 1998 Vallejo #7 (3/3) -$3,100,000 [MLS]

36 thoughts on “Warm Thoughts (And Old School Elegance) On A Brisk Monday Morn”
  1. It looks nice but to pay $3M for a place with 1 parking spot? Pass. Seriously, the old mindset of poeple living “city style” and making huge concessions to get a nice place are over and done with for a while. If you’re selling a SFH, you might have more leeway since people can just knock it down and rebuild whatever they want (after greasing the right city planner’s palm).
    But condo owners had better take note, we don’t care about your views. We don’t care about neighborhoods that are “up and coming.” We care about value. We want deeded parking. We want buildings that are earthquake retrofitted, not unreinforced brick and mortar. We don’t want staggeringly high HOA’s. The old standard of SF real estate is gone; welcome to the new deal.
    Granted, I’m not in the market for a $3M condo, but I know several who are and after IM’ing one of them with this link he wrote back, “LOL 1 car parking and that HOA is UNSANE” So I’m not completely off the mark.

  2. If you’re selling a SFH, you might have more leeway since people can just knock it down and rebuild whatever they want (after greasing the right city planner’s palm).
    That hasn’t happened since DBI was audited. Would you know that?

  3. This property is awesome. The views dominate and the style is classic. The price seems too high, but that is true for most listings now. It might still be a good idea to make an offer for something less if you have the will and the cash.
    Units in old buildings are probably never going to work for people who want parking and low upkeep. Families didn’t feel the need for two to four cars until relatively recently. Also, to keep a big, old structure in good condition is expensive. If anything these HOA fees seem just a bit low, but that is probably because the price is a bit high. Upkeep on high end properties is typically 1-10% of value per year, and these fees are less than 1% of the asking price on the listing. If you don’t want to spend this kind of money on keeping a place looking its best, then when why would you buy such a place at all?

  4. you are right millions of dollars for a home should be put into parking only. forget livability, i want garage doors!!

  5. “This residence underwent an upscale remodel”
    – in what decade?
    also can anyone confirm this address? neither mapjack nor a google search, nor a SFDBI search show the existence of 1998 Valejo.

  6. I suppose you’d choose this over a new construction if you are into old world charm. I once looked at a Russian Hill condo that looked like this one renting for $10k. Now I’m renting in one of the newest high rise with a much better view/amenities for $4k.

  7. sorry i’m a moron. found it on SFDBI website. but this kitchen remodeled in 2005 for $120K????
    guess i’d expect a gas stove and a little better looking floor and backsplash.

  8. I think it’s really pretty. Priced right for the market? I dunno. But it is quite nice.
    Only the kitchen needs a little help, it should get AGA-fied to match the rest of the place.

  9. I’ll disagree, as I usually do. That’s a perfectly reasonable opening price for a property like this. And this is going to be bought by someone’s I-don’t-give-a-crap-about-resale-because-this-will-be-my-last-home grandparents. They aren’t going to be that price sensitive for a property like this.
    The rooms have good scale, views are spectacular, and people who buy at this price point usually remodel the kitchens and baths (which are pretty bad) to suit their own tastes anyways.
    The HOA includes heat, which for a place like this could run more than $100 per month for a retiree who was there all the time, and servicing an elevator in an 8 unit building is not cheap. So I think this HOA is in line or lower than others.
    Yes, ORH has a pool and some other amenities this doesn’t, but that gets divided 500 ways, so you can do that more cheaply when you have such a building. You also end up with people in studios who refuse to ever increase the HOA fee, so the building may not always be so well maintained: this one, you wouldn’t worry about it.
    So all in all, I think this is pretty reasonable. Will probably go for less, though it wouldn’t surprise me to see it go for something near this. A year ago, the 1st ask would have been much, much higher. A year from now, lower still.

  10. Condo’s aren’t for everyone but this one sure is nice. Can’t comment on price w/o more detail on square footage. I’d say that this place could / should support $1200/psf.
    Question for the masses: Is this a CoOp? And in SF, do coop building fees includes taxes?

  11. am I looking at the correct place? To me the kitchen/bath are nothing special, but nothing to be scorned either.
    seems nicer than a lot of other kitchens that i’ve seen in this price range.
    It’s clearly a little “grandma” in styling…
    I never can decide if a price is fair or not… I’m the worst pricer on this blog.

  12. If this is the building I think it is, I have been in another unit here before. Being at the western end of the block, almost every room has a Golden Gate bridge view. Buildings like this are VERY quiet, and one could go months without running into anyone in the elevator, lobby or garage.

  13. Eddy, I’m wondering that too. The listing says the buyer needs “board approval” on the listing, so that sounds like a co-op, and I *think* with co-ops the HOA traditionally includes taxes, and if it did, it would make the HOA a real bargain, since 3M*1.14%=34,200/12=2850 per month in just property taxes. Can that be right?

  14. I’m always amazed at the comments here about kitchens. I don’t think tearing everything out and redoing is the answer. This kitchen looks fine and workable. As for gas vs electric, there are many of us who prefer to cook with electric.
    The one bath that is pictured is pretty sad, though. Sort of looks like a hotel. But, maybe the other 2 are better.

  15. As FSBO mentioned, this is in fact a co-op and I think (but not sure) the HOA dues are paid quarterly which would only come out to $549 a month. The building is at the northeast corner of Vallejo and Laguna, facing Vallejo, and is part of a series of 4-5 classic Pacific Heights co-ops and condo’s. Unlike 1980 Vallejo next door (also a lovely building which was condo’ed in the 80’s) the units in this building are much smaller, only 2,062 square feet making this $1,503 a square foot. Lovely unit, but substantially overpriced in my view.

  16. RE: Parking. Hey, this is a city. Not everyone in a city needs or wants multiple cars. If you have to have multiple cars in the garage, there are several hundred other towns in the U. S. or tens of thousands of suburbs you can live in.
    There is City CarShare, Taxi, Muni, Bicycle, and…wonder of wonder…walking. Different modes for different folks; different modes for different trips.
    This is one of the only countries in the world where driving is considered a luxury; in most other places, people know it for the pain in the a__ it is, and anyone who can afford it has a driver or uses a driving service. And they worry where to park the car.

  17. Will we ever reach a point where San Franciscan’s stop telling others how they should live their lives?
    “there are several hundred other towns in the U. S. or tens of thousands of suburbs you can live in”
    Correct, AND, in those cities (Chicago, Boston, NYC, Seattle, etc.) you don’t have to suffer with people wagging their fingers telling you how you should live your life.
    David Sedaris wrote an amazing article in the NYTimes about this problem that is unique to San Francisco. Sedaris’s artical is a funny account of a trip to San Francisco where he is frowned upon and scolded for almost every action he tries to take. At the end of the article, Sedaris escapes to L.A. (!) where he finds the urban freedom to live without being looked down upon.
    The fact is, a wealthy buyer of a unit like this makes a much less destructive impact on the planet than building a McMansion in Marin. If they need a car to get to the doctor and visit their grandchildren, good for them.

  18. SF is only 7×7 with no subway system, a pretty small “city” by any city standard. Without a car you would be seriously limiting yourself in mobility and recreational activities.

  19. enough-from my experience the only people in SF that are anti-car are the suburban folks who never lived in a real “city”. They move to SF and want the city feel by making their lives 10x harder with no car.
    Dont’ get me wrong, I take the Muni whenever I can. But most of the time a car is just easier depending on where I am going.

  20. But, this apartment DOES have a parking space deeded to the owner. And, someone buying this space can certainly afford a taxi (or to lease another space nearby.
    The hectoring lectures go both ways. “Snorfle snort snort. This apartment be STUPID. Only one parking space. Snorfle snort”

  21. Oh you poor poor poor poor little car drivers. After killing or maiming hundreds of your fellow San Franciscans every year, you now have to suffer the indignity of being asked to drive a bit more carefully.
    I really feel for ya. I do.

  22. The co-ops of the 1920s have always sold for a premium price, but usually less than condos which provide more ownership privileges. This is true in NY too, where many people live in co-ops. There was a time when you had to pay all cash in SF for co-ops, but I guess now it is possible to get a mortgage for some portion of the purchase price. This is a small space, and for about this price, perhaps a bit more per square foot you could live in NYC on Central Park West and many other places.
    This row of apartment blocks on Vallejo has the advantage over the block above it on Broadway in that there are no other tall buildings below, north, to block the views.
    It takes a niche buyer for this. Most others spending this sum would prefer a SFR.
    Views are great.

  23. That is not the bathroom of a three million dollar home! For that price, I would expect a walk-in shower.
    For that price, I would also expect the MLS listing to show photos of every room (including the other two bathrooms) and list the square footage.

  24. This is one of the only countries in the world where driving is considered a luxury;
    I think you’re confused. Most of the countries in the world do not have a high #% of people with cars, and thus driving is very much a luxury.
    I take it you’ve never been to most of the developing world?
    I would say that in America driving is considered a bare necessity (not a luxury) in almost every city except for Manhattan.
    I’ll tell you this: there are NO discussions about how many parking spaces are dedicated to units in Soweto. If you have a car, much less a parking space, it is VERY much of a luxury there… since few can afford a car or parking space. Until recently (10-15 years ago), Electricity and Running Water were considered luxuries as well. (that is rapidly changing in Soweto).
    I use Soweto as an example. But you can use countless other developing countries that I’ve been to. (Much of Asia, Africa, S. America, Eastern Europe, etc)

  25. I can’t believe how many people are freaking out about the one parking spot comment. I don’t think it’s a huge deal to only have one spot but I also don’t think it’s horribly anti-environmental or non San Franciscan to say, “one of the advantages of an SFR, which you could buy at this price point, is more parking.”
    Way to go off topic, socketeers. Now I’ll never know if the taxes are included in the HOA or not.

  26. kthnxbye, I couldn’t agree more. In response to your question, it doesn’t look like taxes are included in the HOA (which are paid quarterly I believe). You can look up taxes paid on the assessor’s website and their current bill is $21,875 for the year on a $1.86million taxable value.

  27. kthnxbye, just fyi, this building is also interesting in that it’s “mapped” as condo’s so each unit has it’s own map-blocklot (i.e. APN). Co-ops usually just have one map-blocklot for the entire building.

  28. Jake, thanks for the response. That makes more sense, especially if indeed the HOA is quarterly. $549 a month actually seems fairly reasonable if you want to keep an older building well-maintained, considering how few units there are and if it includes heat to boot.

  29. kthnxbye, assuming the HOA is only $549 a month, it’s either evidence of an incredible bargain for a unit of this size and caliber, or a sign that the building reserves, etc. are way under-funded. Some of the 1 beds in the nice older buildings in Pac heights/Russian Hill right now have much higher HOA’s on a monthly basis, 1101 Green and 1450 Greenwich both come to mind.

  30. The Co-op board approval process is generally murky and not well defined and the board need not explain a rejection. Some boards will look at your religion and the color of your skin, others won’t (at least in NYC there are some co-ops with that reputation).
    In general the big issue is the capital requirement. Boards generally require possession of other capital after purchase to be at least three times the purchase price– so to get board approval to buy this for $3.1M, you would need to have other assets of $9.1M or more. The board may also consider your professional reputation, whether your business or politics could bring protesters to the building. Some boards are family friendly, some are not.
    Most co-op boards also require owners to get approval for all renovations to make sure they won’t adversely impact others.

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