1130 Cole (www.SocketSite.com)
While tax records suggest a purchase price of $1,575,000 in July 2007, a newly gutted 1130 Cole Street with “approved permitted drawings for 5 bedrooms, 3 full baths, 2 separate powder rooms, family room and 2 car garage” returned to the market five months ago asking $1,288,000.
Eight days ago the sale of 1130 Cole Street closed escrow with a reported contract price of $1,200,000. As a plugged-in reader pointed out last month, the seller had also gutted and lost 324 Day (and 352 Diamond).
No word on how “arms-length” the previous appraisals on any of these properties might have been.
UPDATE (7/16): A plugged-in reader digs up a related story on our aforementioned seller and a dozen or so other properties: Valencia St. Investor Falters.
Calling All Contractors That Still Have Cash… [SocketSite]
When Arms Length Appraisals Are “Too Far” Away [SocketSite]
Valencia St. Investor Falters [missionlocal.org]

Recent Articles

Comments from “Plugged-In” Readers

  1. Posted by 45yo hipster

    Dude lost 3 projects- Perhaps Muhawieh Maher is the Casey serin of san Francisco. Anybody knows this cat’s story?

  2. Posted by whatever

    I don’t think there’s an issue with the appraisals as I think most(?) of the loans obtained by this individual were hard money loans. The lender took us to a walk through at another of his deals (640 Hayes). It was partially gutted, some floors removed, no stairs to the bottom (had to use ladder).

  3. Posted by 45yo hipster

    What!?! The dude took hard money loans 06-08, when my dead cat was able to qualify for a bank loan. There’s gotta be a good story here somewhere…

  4. Posted by anon

    Muhawieh’s business transactions were on a much larger level than Serin’s. Too bad he never blogged.

  5. Posted by EBGuy

    Between this and the foreclosure of 1021 Cole on June 9 for $1,083,150, this street is really going down hill…

  6. Posted by auden

    that is an interesting article lolcat. thanks for the find.

  7. Posted by 45yo hipster

    Good find lolcat!
    Man, that brash kid f*cked up big time. Feel sorry for his Extended family, who believed in him and who will loose a lot too.

  8. Posted by San FronziScheme

    Not exactly a Madoff-By-The-Bay there, but still painful for the family and friends who thought they’d cash out big time on the BA suckers. The conundrum today must be either double-down to try get some of these investments back or simply cut your losses. The ultimate solution would be for BA end buyers to keep on overpaying for property to keep everyone afloat;)

  9. Posted by ex SF-er

    Wow, that’s quite the story!
    FWIW: His ‘extended family’ is made up of TENS of thousands of people in the US. Probably what we would call a “community” although I wouldn’t be surprised if their extended family is much tighter than the typical American community and maybe even tighter than some American extended families!
    this is the story of a guy who thought he was so smart when all he was doing was riding an easy credit wave. You and I will help to pay for his foolish use of other people’s money.
    For instance, the story talks about how he bought a property for $1.7 million in December 2007, and then proceeded to take out $3.2 Million of mortgages on that property.

  10. Posted by Oceangoer

    “The decision to default on multiple loans, he said, was strategic. At the end of last year, Muhawieh wanted to start fresh. It was a sort of New Year’s resolution, he said, to let some properties go.” Right, let them go and let taxpayers clean up his sh*t. Its like following the circus elephants with a shovel dealing with these enterprising kids. Spare me any more of them, please.

  11. Posted by eddy

    That was an amazing article. What really amazes me are the never ending ways in which this bubble manifested itself and the mirco impacts it has on individuals that somehow gets lost in the headlines. How that guy sleeps at night is beyond me.

  12. Posted by anon

    That article barely scratches the surface. There is a movie in there.

  13. Posted by lolcat_94123

    Yeah, what a story. What’s even worse is to think of the people that started doing that same stuff 2-3 years before him and actually made money.

  14. Posted by gh

    Not that newsworthy, America is full of j*ckoff real estate developers like this. I hope his credit and reputation suffer as much as all the tenants he displaced. He even screwed up trying to enact the Ellis Act, clown! And enough with his ‘extended family’ of gas station attendants.

  15. Posted by Chad

    @Editor Thanks for the link to the missionlocal.org article.
    That article was very insightful. Like botcha says in that comments, this has exposed the greed of individuals also.
    Wondering what state Mr Muhawieh is in. i.e.
    can he still get out of this hole, or
    will he disappear one day and be on local news ?? or
    will he declare bankrupcy and start fresh after 7 years
    anyone here from mission knows anything about Mr Muhawieh’s current financial state ??
    I am curious because I almost dived into something like this when I got my trust fund payouts in 2005 !

  16. Posted by anon

    you’re a racist clown gh. die.

  17. Posted by LMRiM

    Excellent comment, gh! Finally, someone noted the hidden costs of actions. (No opinion about the “racist” part – come on, people, lighten up.)
    Everyone immediately noted the obvious direct losses (of the “extended family”, taxpayers, etc.) But there were indirect losses, among which were the tenants displaced, bidding up the cost of contractor labor on Muhawieh’s foolish projects (thereby making it more expensive for sensible projects to be completed), and the bidding up of the price of his subject properties, which displaced true demand by families or more conservative (smarter, in retrospect) contractors/rehabbers.
    As for the losses of the “extended family”, who cares? They fell for a typical affinity scam, here thinking that their ethnicity gave them entree into a golden opportunity that wasn’t open to others – similar to the Madoff “victims” (who no doubt laughed abuot how the peasants had to satisfy themselves with 1% interest rates on their CDs because they weren’t “Friends of Bernie”, known as “The Jewish Bond”). The extended family were also all engaged in outright speculation. They gambled, and lost. No tears here.
    (Actually, though, this guy Muhawieh doesn’t strike me as being as bad a character as Madoff. He probably genuinely thought these investments were going to pan out. Who knows for sure, but it doesn’t look like outright fraud to me, as with Madoff.)

  18. Posted by britter

    Here’s another scam artist that I know personally about as well.
    The more the economy drops, the more these types of fraudsters are being outed.
    http://abclocal.go.com/kgo/story?section=news/iteam&id=6901798

  19. Posted by Robert

    GH,
    There is a very strong Palestinian business community in San Francisco, primarily Christians from Ramallah, and they have been successful. Not gas station attendants by any means. There is a strong cultural drive to be entrepreneurial. I have a friend in the community, and off-hand he or his cousins consist of one architect, one tech-company founder, the owners of harlot, owners of multiple coffee shops, retail stores, doctors, and many small-time landlords. Getting loans from the community is quite common, and usually works fine.
    They are not loose with money, by the way. I was once talking to my friend and he interrupted me to say “Look, someone dropped a dollar!” — indeed, about 100 feet away, it happened. Before, his mom opened a retail store, specializing in selling suits to blacks. They made a lot of money, and now he only buys clothes at 70% off. There is a whole niche market for such suits, apparently, and they were famous for their 2 for 1 sales.
    We were talking about this guy a few months ago. Supposedly, he was a rising star and it all turned out to be a ponzi scheme. This came out not too long after Madoff, as the bezel began to be exposed. The larger community is fine.

  20. Posted by jessep

    Robert, this Madoff-esque guy wasn’t the gay prostitute right?
    You know, it’s possible to ruin expectations.

  21. Posted by Robert

    Heh, I must ruin them. Totally different crowd. All the gayness in that community is deeply closeted.

  22. Posted by Jeff

    As a proud gas station attendant, I have to say you ALL are classist pigs. Don’t be surprised if we fill your car with diesel next time. We know who you are. You have been warned.

  23. Posted by NoeValleyJim

    Great Article. This is how a bubble unwinds.

  24. Posted by Jimmy (No Longer Bitter)

    Muhawieh is the Casey Serin of SF real estate?
    He should start a blog & monetize it.

  25. Posted by Chad

    Why are we all in denial that the “bubble burst” as some of us call it is the consequence of EXTREME GREED in the Global Community, spanning various corporations, businesses and even the government ?
    We are ALL GREEDY, whether we choose to admit it or not. It is a cop out to simply isolate the Madoffs and Muhawiehs of our world and ignore the underlying problem. Isn’t it the Greed of the Clients of these individuals, which also pushed them to such great heights in wealth and power to begin with ??
    Didn’t any of ya’ll hear Greenspan tell the Senate

    “…An infectious greed seemed to grip much of our business community”

    and…

    “It is not that humans have become any more greedy than in generations past. It is that the avenues to express greed had grown so enormously.

    More on this here.

  26. Posted by Jimmy (No Longer Bitter)

    I’m greedy, but I seem to have mis-applied myself in terms of actually acquiring material wealth as a result. I’m also lazy so I find myself doing work that I find intellectually fulfilling, which is almost by definition less remunerative than anything that would bring in tons of money.
    Obviously, the lesson is that I’m not greedy enough … being greedy is, like most human pursuits, a very competitive business.

  27. Posted by 45yo hipster

    Hmm…I wonder what Donald trump has to say about greed?

  28. Posted by PAK

    To everyone,
    I know mr. m very well. I know whats going on. But what I find amazing is that people, random people, are so quick to put in ther 2 sense of whats going on, when in reality they dont know the entire situation. You guys are so quick to trash talk or whatever. If you guys dont know how the business works then keep your mouth shut. Maher is a scam artist? is that what you guys think? how bout this before those thoughts cross your mind, meet him first. He is a great guy. And did nobody realize its the f*cking ECONOMY!!!!!!!! that really doesnt help that Cali and the rest of the US is eating shit right now with job losses, bankruptices, foreclosers, and what not. If the economy was better, the investors would be getting paid and nobody would be trash talking or threatening his and his families lives. Which people are doing on a daily basis. What he needs is to get himself organized and look at his options. He is not a Madoff, he is not trying to screw people over, he is a young entrepreneur who got hit by the terrible economy. If he was trying to scam his “family” he wouldnt have paid people their money. I dont think its Maher thats greedy I think its the people that invested with him and are demanding it now when they know he doesnt have any. They should be patient because it will take time, several years possibly, but he will turn this around. Everyone just needs to be patient.

  29. Posted by Barb

    I have direct knowledge of this guy and he IS a scam artist and the biggest frickin’ liar that I have ever come across! Has anybody ever witnessed his “tears” when he’s being hit with direct questions and can’t answer?! Oh, that’s a site to see! Or his famous, “I’ll call you later” and you don’t hear from the evil bastard for months!!!
    To PAK that posted on 8/3/09, you must NOT have lost any money to this guy or know anybody that did, but I do and it’s not a pretty scene. This guy has screwed up 100’s of people’s lives and for him blaming everything on the downturn of the ecomony– Bullsh….!!!!!! He ought to start telling the truth and admit that he was playing the stock market, foreign currency, etc. Whoever could defend this piece of crap, must not be any better themselves. I don’t talk from “hear-say”, I am talking from FACTS! His lousy brother Issac is any better either! He claims he didn’t know anything—-SURE he didn’t! Bullcrap to him as well!

  30. Posted by San FronziScheme

    …Everyone just needs to be patient.
    jet engine noise in the background – stewardess voice: “Sir, we will be landing in Rio in 15 minutes. Could you please close your laptop and secure your seat belt?”

  31. Posted by PAK

    I know quite a few people that lost money to Maher, Barb. However it was THEIR CHOICE to decide to invest their life savings with him. So think about it and be rational if he is a scam artist, which he is NOT!!, then where is the money? He is not benefiting from it thats for sure. He does real estate for a living, he just needs time to pay ppl off. Once hes able to sell some properties he will be able to. And how dare you bring Issac in this!! He has nothing to deal with it. These were Mahers choices he made them and at the wrong time. “You must not be any better yourself” shows your lack of intelligence, if you are angry at Maher thats fine you may have lost money with him, however, you cannot say I am not any better myself when you know nothing more then what I am writing. Maher doesnt answer his phone calls because of the threats they are placing on his and his families lives. Do you blame the guy? I dont. What I do believe is he needs to get himself organized like I have said above. When properties sell he will be paying people off, but obviously if nothing sells he is not going to be able to afford it.

  32. Posted by Barb

    Pak, It’s the investor’s fault that they trusted this smooth talking Maher with their life savings?
    You’ve got to be kidding me if you really believe this! Maher isn’t benefiting from any of this? Hey, maybe not NOW that he’s lost everyone’s money, but he sure was in the past driving around in a $85K Mercedes and so on and so forth and having a beauty supply store in his sister’s name that there is NOOOOOOO way she afforded on her own. Oh yeah I forgot—his mom drives a Mercedes that she also couldn’t afford with the job she holds and you got the nerve to say that he (nor his family)have benefited? I can go on and on about people (his friends & relatives) that he gave his investor’s money to! Oh and he don’t return his phone calls because of the threats to him and his family? Dude, you are way off the trolley track here! I KNOW several people that try to call him and they are NOT threatening his nor his families lives. So, why wouldn’t he call them back? Get you fcuking story straight and quit trying to protect this piece of crap Muhawieh and YES, I bring his brother Issac into it because he was going around signing Deeds or Trusts and getting them notarized and handing them to people acting like these investors were going to get their money back so DON’T tell me he didn’t know anything. That’s B.S. He might be able to play off that dumb attitude with some people, but the proof is in his signatures on these recorded documents!
    Then, you ask–where is the money? I already told you that he was most likely playing the stock market & into foreign currency and crapping it away acting like a hot-shot with his friends handing investor’s money out like it was his own!
    Then you go on to say that once he is able to sell some properties he will be able to pay people off? What planet are you on? In the past 2 months or so- over 12 of his properties have been foreclosed on and have been sold at trustee’s sales. There’s about 6 more being foreclosed on right now. Once those are gone, he will have no properties in his name. So what properties will there be left for him to sell and pay of these people? You make NOOOOO sense or you just REALLY don’t know the complete truth of this story!
    And do you know how many people this guy has taken money from? I’ve got a rough estimate going on in my head! If Maher was such an honest person, why was he still taking people’s money acting like everything was ok when he knew he was losing his azz at the time?
    Look, any way you look at this—this is a ponzi scheme and he needs to pay the price for this and so does his family who reaped benefits from him stealing from innocent investors!

  33. Posted by EBGuy

    Another Maher T. Muhawieh property hit the auction block today. Casey Serin meets Bernie Madoff in Baghdad by the Bay.
    1036 Jackson 8/10/2009
    Description: Flats & duplex (F) building, 3 story height, on a 25 sqft lot, currently 2,460 sqft livable area, 13 rooms, 3 bathrooms, 3 total units, built in 1900
    Unpaid Balance: $984,472

  34. Posted by EBGuy

    We are family…
    An Issac Muhawieh property will be auctioned on the courthouse steps on August 13. I thought stuff like this didn’t happen in Noe Vally(!)
    619 Diamond St.
    Description: 1 story height, on a 25 sqft lot, currently 1,415 sqft livable area, 5 rooms, 1 bathrooms, 1 total units, built in 1900
    Unpaid Balance: $842,481 (bought for $1.2 million in Dec. 2007)

  35. Posted by Robert

    I hope someone else doesn’t show up with an extra penny, since one Epic Noe Thread is enough. At least, one per week is enough 🙂

  36. Posted by San FronziScheme

    Heck, 619 Diamond is still marketed for sale for 1.2M.
    Hint on what you’re buying: Contractors special. Noe valley home needs to be completed. Currently partially framed and foundation work completed with drawings.
    Another broken toy for sale…

  37. Posted by anon

    619 Diamond isn’t 1,415 square feet EBGuy. try zero square feet. its gutted and gone. Sir Demo King did a number on this one as well, with lawsuits from the neighbors because the contractor rocked their foundation…

  38. Posted by Barb

    Anon, That is correct that there is a lawsuit from one of the neighbors next to 619 Diamond. Just curious how you found that out. The more info the better on this creep Muhawieh.

  39. Posted by tttt

    He is a scumbag. I was suckered into lending him money, and consider it a very expensive lesson. I’ve known him for years. He is full of promises, and stopped returning calls when his check bounced. Rumor has it he owes over $30M to the “community”.
    Not sure he’s benefitted, but he’s robbed his own family. I hope he lives a long miserable life. Not sure how he sleeps at night. He and his brother are cockroaches.

  40. Posted by Jimmy (No Longer Bitter)

    tttt — yow. 30 mil?!! That’s some serious money to be raising from individuals — please tell us more about how he did it. Your community must be pretty flush with cash; in my world it’s like pulling teeth trying to get even $150k together. Raising $30M would take ten lifetimes.

  41. Posted by Barb

    tttt- You are correct about him and his brother, no doubt about that. I think it’s time to make a phone call and take him down along with his other family members. Why should they be walking around free when they’ve DESTROYED so many people’s lives? It’s just not right something HAS to been done.

  42. Posted by sparky-b

    Jimmy,
    What are you getting money together for? Real estate specuvesting perhaps…

  43. Posted by Jimmy (No Longer Bitter)

    That was for a my tech company when I was starting out and had no personal money with which to buy the equipment I needed to operate. I did have the courtesy to line up a couple million in DoD contracts before asking anyone for cash, but even then it was very difficult to get started. No bank would lend a cent against anything except real estate. (One more reason I am not unhappy to see them in dire straits now).
    In the end we found private money and paid it back in 24 months with interest, and recruited a valuable business partner in the process.
    Alas I have never speculated with anyone’s money (or even my own). Maybe I should start … I could do a lot with $30M.

  44. Posted by EBGuy

    Jimmy, I just noticed that the House passed H R 2965 (link to roll call) Enhancing Small Business Research and Innovation Act and decided to to rain money on the VCs. My bleep-bleep Rep voted for it. Hope springs eternal, though, as the version that passed the Senate limits VC involvement. Let’s hope rational heads prevail when the two disparate bills are reconciled…

  45. Posted by Jimmy (No Longer Bitter)

    EBGuy — the House and Senate are still (theoretically) working on some kind of reconciliation. Hard to vote ‘against’ small business — can’t blame your rep for voting in favor of the House bill. The Senate passed a continuing resolution (again!) so the program lives on in its current form … it has been a remarkably tough fight to get all sides to be heard on this issue. Goes to show just how powerful big lobbyists and well funded interest groups really are in DC. (And how powerless the ‘little guys’ are without big campaign contribution $$ distributed in the right places).

  46. Posted by tttt

    @ Jimmy. He’s been doing this for a few years. CAsh is not wasy to come by. Mine was a drop in the bucket compares to some people’s losses. People had worked and saved all their lives, handed over their retirement ( not so smart, but in a community so tight knit- people trusted him and his “family”. It is he and his brother who are the crooks, the rest of his family now have to deal.
    He is a sweet-talker, signs deeds of trusts, and does everything he “should” be doing. A lot of people didn’t record their deeds of trust, and have no recourse. I did, and am now paying for it, literally.
    I’m trying to figure out how I can get money back from someone who doesn’t have any.
    I DO know, that he’s not only borrowed from “the community”, but from others as well, and have heard their have been some violent threats to him.
    I hope he gets locked up.

  47. Posted by max.diez

    I read through the many comments on this blog and as a avid reader of Socketsite I have always appreciated the honesty of this forum. That said I wanted to readers to know the truth about Maher Muhawieh. I have been his close friend since 2001 and I can vouch for the kind of person he is.
    Back in 2007, my wife and I got behind on a first and second loan that we owed on an investment property. Maher let us borrow the money to save that property. Without him, we would have surely had to foreclose on that investment. I realize that times have changed, but knowing the kind of person that he is and where he came from I firmly believe he will come out of this stronger than he was before.
    I know many of you have your own opinions of him, but take it from me. He is a good guy. He did not need to help me back in 2007, but he did it anyway.
    If you have questions you can contact me directly @ http://www.re-syndicate.com

  48. Posted by Barb

    Max—-That’s nice that Maher Muhawieh borrowed you money to save your property, BUT the money that he lent you was not his to give out, it was his investor’s money. Now those same investors are struggling to keep up their mortgage payments and facing the possibility of losing their homes because Maher was giving away money where it wasn’t supposed to be going. He was SUPPOSED to be investing these people’s money in properties, NOT giving it out to his friends like you and so many others! That really sucks that you benefited from other people’s hard earned money and you got the audacity to defend the piece of crap Muhawieh!

  49. Posted by PAK

    barb you dont know that that money is the investors. Stop making accusations.

  50. Posted by Barb

    Pak- Oh YES I do KNOW that it’s not his money! He had NOOOOOOOOOOOOO money before he started taking it from his investors so DON’T tell me that I don’t know! What was he doing for a living before he started ripping people off? Do you know? He’s not working now trying to pay off his debts…..And believe you me, I KNOW of SEVERAL people that he lent money to that didn’t have a pot to piss in either! Where would Mr. Muhawieh get all of this free cash to give to all of these people, huh?????? Explain that to me!
    You sure are defending him fiercely, you better hope that you didn’t profit from him stealing from others!

  51. Posted by tttt

    PAK must be Maher or ISaac, I don’t know a soul who has one good thing to say about him, including his immediate family. There is no way to defend him. He lost sight of his projects, and started only looking at the loot.
    Max- I believe you owe me some money 🙂 Would you lend him money today, since he lent you money in 2007?

  52. Posted by PAK

    I am not Maher or Isaac, I am part of the “family” that lost their life investments. But I will defend Maher till the day I die, because I know him as a person, not based off what I hear and read.

  53. Posted by PAK

    Barb,
    Before he began investing he worked and saved a lot of money. He was an incredibly smart student that attending University of San Fran, and was on the deans list. Oh also, he invested his money in stocks and other investments. I know this because I have seen proof. I have not profited from him, actually my family lost money to him, but like i said before I know him quite well, and I know that he is not as evil as everyone is making him seem to be. But its ok, I realized that for people to be saying such evil things about a person they barely know themselves they are prbly not happy with themselves. Oh, and obviously when he first started investing it wasnt as big as it is now, he just made poor decisions. AND, i do not believe he needs to spend the rest of his life in jail, but I do agree he needs to pay everyone back. And I do have faith that over time, whether its a few years or several years, he will pay EVERYONE back.

  54. Posted by Barb

    Pak—–Hahahaa! I also KNOW Maher Muhawieh…Rembember the days when he graduated from the University of SF? Do you remember what he was driving then? Hmmmm, can you say “BEAT UP OLD MAZDA? Amazing how he goes from that to a Mercedes! How does 1 individual pay back over 100 peoplewell over $25 million dollars in his lifetime? The math ain’t adding up on that one Pak! Amazing that your family lost money to him and you can still defend him. What does your family have to say about that? I know a lot of people that have lost money to him and they sure as in hell are NOT defending him. Something is wrong with this picture or maybe you and your family just don’t have a close relationship?????

  55. Posted by chuckie

    So where does the whole matter stand? Is DA’s office involved? Has anyone assessed if any assets, hidden or otherwise, can be recovered? Maher does not seem to be cooperating with at least some of the investors. Is he filing for bankruptcy?

  56. Posted by tttt

    PAK- you have some nerve. If he was a good guy, he’d call people back. I haven’t heard from him since he gave me a check that bounced in April. sounds like a real “great guy”. I knew him when he was in high school, at one point he wasn’t evil…now he’s greedy with other people’s money.
    There is NO way anyone in their right mind can defend him. Even his stupid brother apologizes for Maher. How did you lose your life investments, and will defend him until the “day he dies”! Do you think when he pays everyone back, he’ll deliver the money while riding a unicorn? If he had any intention or moral conscience, he would contact the borrowers and set a plan. He doesn’t give a crap about anyone, people who recorded their DOT’s are being sued by third parties, and shelling out additional money. He knows all of this. HE DOESN”T GIVE A SHIT! So, you, PAK, are clearly delusional.

  57. Posted by diemos

    Once you’re 30 million in the hole you can’t even pay the interest costs out of an honest job.
    I’m sure though that like every gambler in Vegas he’s sure he’ll win it all back eventually if only people will give him a little time and spot him some seed money.

  58. Posted by PAK

    You guys dont understand, whatever, go ahead think and say what you want. I shouldnt have to defend my cousin to complete asshole strangers that just keep tearing him down.

  59. Posted by diemos

    “You guys dont understand”
    What we don’t understand is why you’re defending him. Is it just because he’s family and family can do no wrong?
    He got drunk on leverage. Mistook a bull market for his own business acumen and investing genius and lost a bunch of money for himself and others when the market turned.
    At least he’s not
    Taco Bell Jeff
    Part II
    Part III

  60. Posted by tttt

    PAk- You sound just as whiny as Maher. I understand plenty. He robbed me. He is a scumbag, I hope he gets his ass beat by the people that are threatening him.

  61. Posted by anonn

    What did you invest in, tttt, barb? Did you know what your positions were?

  62. Posted by diemos

    ^ I have to second that anonn.
    It’s interesting to see the level of fury you get when people learn the hard way that when it seems to good to be true it usually is.

  63. Posted by anonn

    I don’t mean to be critical. I’m curious. I would like to know how this was propositioned to them.

  64. Posted by EBGuy

    352 Diamond has made PropertyShark’s Trustee Sales list. Scheduled to hit the auction block on October 16 with an unpaid balance of $591,325.

  65. Posted by EBGuy

    I would like to know how this was propositioned to them.
    This lawsuit alleges in excess of 10% (and later 17-20%) annual return on some loans/investments. From what I can tell, Maher Muhawieh borrowed $1.75 million from this one individual alone, and, it appears, the deeds of trust (if any) that were used to secure the loans are subordinate to junior lien holders. Yikes!

  66. Posted by EBGuy

    One more thing about the above lawsuit that astounded me: sums ranging from $200k to $500k were loaned to Maher Muhawieh with an oral agreement only (no written contract). Check out Exhibit A at the end of the lawsuit where the $1.75million owed was finally committed to paper.

  67. Posted by auden

    I just read the lawsuit referenced above and a few questions arose. Why would the plantiff give Muhawieh another $200,000 after M. had already defaulted on the interest payment on the original $600,000 loan– especially since the plantiff’s loans/investments to date had not returned a dime? And why exactly did the plantiff think a 17-20% annualized interest payment on a loan would be “risk free”? Anything that supposedly produces returns like that will always have some degree of risk.

  68. Posted by Trip

    You know the old saying — you can’t con an honest man.
    I see that Muhawieh did not even bother to appear in the lawsuit and default proceedings have begun. Not a smart move. A fraud judgment is not dischargeable in bankruptcy and will follow the guy around for 20 years.

  69. Posted by auden

    That said, he was clearly a trusted figure in the community at one point, and the level of trust ran quite deep…

  70. Posted by diemos

    “Why would the plantiff give Muhawieh another $200,000 after M. had already defaulted on the interest payment on the original $600,000 loan”
    You must not spend much time in Vegas, this is called “doubling down”. Risking making your loss greater for the chance to “win it all back”.
    “And why exactly did the plantiff think a 17-20% annualized interest payment on a loan would be “risk free”?”
    Because the loans were backed by SF real-estate which only goes up, up, up!

  71. Posted by anonn

    Because the loans were backed by SF real-estate which only goes up, up, up!
    Why you, and others like you, would rather insert smarmy nonsense instead of cooling out, reading what others say, and waiting for individuals who actually have something cogent to say about various situations is not known. It’s always the same jokes too.

  72. Posted by auden

    I think its more than a Vegas mentality, but I understand your point diemos.
    And as far as the 17-20% being risk free, its not just about real estate going up up up, its greed blinding reason.

  73. Posted by kid char

    consider the source anonn.. someone who disparages sf real estate and considers livermore (or florida for that matter) as a viable alternative. rings of sour grapes i’d say…

  74. Posted by auden

    The community element here fascinates me the most. People really appeared to trust this young man– to the point where they would lend him 1.6 million without proper documentation… Its more than ignorance playing a role here, it really seems to be like family members lending to family members, but the family is 10,000+ in size.
    Maybe I am misinterpreting the situation, but if I’m not, I don’t know how he sleeps at night.

  75. Posted by EBGuy

    The community element here fascinates me the most.
    The other family trust, which is in for almost $1.5million (not on this property, but apparently has interests in four others), appears to be circling their wagons and making sure their (junior) liens are secured. I’m guessing they may foreclose on some of their positions and take over properties to ensure they get developed. This is speculating that they have deep enough pockets to do so; it would leave other investors, though, SOL (which is probably the case already). An example is 952 Hampshire (owned by Maher Muhawieh), where it appears a junior lien holder will attempt to foreclose on Oct. 20 for an unpaid balance of $230,733 (the family trust mentioned above filed a NOTS on March 30).

  76. Posted by walker

    I’ve been watching the remodel of 1130 Cole for some time now – I personally love the new facade – and when I walked by over the weekend I saw a sign up, lights on, and people inside. Looks like it’s back on the market, asking $2,975,000: http://www.1130cole.com.

  77. Posted by eddy

    I saw this come on the market the other day. I like it a lot. Don’t know the nabe all that much, but it’s a nice home. I miss fluj / anonn, but not the bickering that came at him. Good luck with the sale.

  78. Posted by alazyman

    1130 Cole sold for asking. Good job and congratulations!

  79. Posted by anonee

    meanwhile all the ss regulars have confidently predicted that we would be seeing 40-50% haircuts, arm reset tsunami ™, anyone who buys now is an idiot, etc..and trashing our favorite resident broker. who is laughing now?
    and kudos to the seller/flipper who bought this in 6/09 (while all you geniuses were clucking the same way you still are…). in this environment he bought it, fixed it and sold it for higher than ever for the nabe.
    socketsite is synonymous with conventional wisdom
    central. what do the ss experts have to say now?
    probably plenty. and the value of the punditry is probably worth what you pay for it…

  80. Posted by sfrenegade

    Btw, it actually did not sell at asking:
    Aug 18, 2010 Sold (MLS) $2,975,000
    Aug 17, 2010 Sold (Public Records) $2,920,000
    Jul 20, 2010 Delisted
    Jun 24, 2010 Listed $2,975,000
    Nice attempt by the agent to juke the stats. Unfortunately, it will work, since people actually look at NAR/CAR stats.
    anonee, it’s funny what you’re calling “conventional wisdom.” It used to be your philosophy was conventional wisdom. In fact, it probably still is, just given how many people tell me on a regular basis what a great time it is to buy a house.

  81. Posted by anonee

    yeah yeah,
    this specuvestor bought amidst all the gloom/doom
    pronouncements of the perma bears and while you guys were touting 40-50% off (tm.) he just went about his business. and now he has alot more money in his pocket. and his broker, who has been known to be in the trenches, confidently priced this thing high for the neighbourhood. and the market has spoken.
    makes the bears look silly again.
    so whose opinion about sf re would you seek? guys like at,tippy,lol,et al..? i mean, you guys confidently spout all kinds of arm chair nonsense and make no money from it. meanwhile the broker and developer make $$ right in front of you.
    i prefer to listen to money talking…

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