CFAH

2874 Bush: Moving Day (www.SocketSite.com)

With the short sale of 2874 Bush Street over in Lower Pacific Heights currently in escrow, and contingencies waived, a plugged-in source reports:

Looks like moving day at 2874 Bush. Seeing the washer and dryer on the truck didn’t surprise me…but seeing the furnace sure did!

It’s starting to sound familiar. And props for the candid cell phone shot (hint, hint).

The Begining Or End Of This (Or The) San Francisco Short Sale Story? [SocketSite]
Strip This (Short Sale) House: The 1467 Underwood Episode [SocketSite]

Comments from Plugged-In Readers

  1. Posted by FAA

    This is anecdotal, so grain of salt: I’ve heard banks are now filing insurance claims in these cases. Since it’s a short sale, either the current owner still has insurance or the bank has purchased on behalf of the owner (and attempting to charge them for it per the mortgage clause). Either way, under theft or vandalism the bank tries to get some cash out of the situation. What’s not clear to me is whether the new buyer is compensated or if the banks pocket it.

  2. Posted by J.P.

    Short sales are just looking like poison.

  3. Posted by bg

    any idea of the selling price?

  4. Posted by joh

    Cool. My friend is shopping for a new furnace. I’ll tell him to keep an eye on craigslist for this one.

  5. Posted by JimBobJones

    Someone should send this photo to the bankster who holds the mortgage and to the new owner so that they can nail this fraudster. Maybe tomorrow, there will be copper pipe on the truck?

  6. Posted by noearch

    Is this legal?

  7. Posted by JimBobJones

    Unless the furnace/etc are specifically exempted under the contract to sell the house, anything attached to the house is part of the house. If there’s no such exemption, it would be a slamdunk lawsuit for the buyer.
    Assuming the bankster hasn’t approved this action, the bankster would have a claim independently since the house is security for the mortgage, and removing the furnace definitely diminishes the value of the security.

  8. Posted by Lori

    JimBob is correct regarding the possibility of a slam dunk lawsuit, but my guess is that since it was a short sale anyway trying to get a dime out of the ousted owners would be like trying to get blood out of a rock. Better to put the money toward a new furnace.

  9. Posted by JimBobJones

    Probably would be better strategically to back out of the sale unless the bankster offers to pay for the new furnace and also offers to pay for an additional inspection and subsequently repair anything else that was fraudulently taken/broken.

  10. Posted by JimBobJones

    Also note that the buyer would not be able to get a mortgage on this property with the heater missing. It won’t pass an appraisal because it’s not considered inhabitable without a furnace or other heater.

  11. Posted by NC

    Buy home. Make Upgrades. Lose job or other unforseen circumstances occur. Bank plays games and refuses to modify. Can’t refy.
    I would leave with all that and the hardwood flooring!

  12. Posted by SFwatcher

    NC, I think people should not buy/make upgrades if they can’t afford the home (doesn’t matter if you lose the job or unforseen circumstances….). Why should Bank accept to modify. They are doing a charity by even considering the modification…

  13. Posted by steve

    I would leave with all that and the hardwood flooring!
    and, hopefully, you would end up in jail after a felony conviction for theft.

  14. Posted by diemos

    “Bank plays games and refuses to modify.”
    Dear sweet mother of pearl. Where did people get the idea that a loan modification was a civil right. Pay the mortgage that you agreed to or hand back the house. It’s that simple.

  15. Posted by OneEyedMan

    Does NC stand for No Clue?

  16. Posted by Billy

    No light or plumbing fixtures, amateurs.

  17. Posted by noearch

    trouble is…hundreds of thousands, probably millions of people chose to buy a house, “upgrade” it..when they couldnt afford to do so in the first place…all on borrowed money…..
    losing your job doesnt give you the right to steal…
    living within your means is what makes sense.

  18. Posted by Brahma (incensed renter)

    Dear sweet mother of pearl. Where did people get the idea that a loan modification was a civil right. Pay the mortgage that you agreed to or hand back the house. It’s that simple.

    Not that I agree with the implicit self-justification/sentiment…but they probably got the idea from the same place where banksters got the idea that they should get monster bonuses in the same year the company that employs them lost so much money it’d have to declare bankruptcy if the firm didn’t get a taxpayer-funded bailout.

  19. Posted by noearch

    oh yea. Amen to Brahma;
    Our society, at all ages, incomes and groups has become lazy…and feels entitled to run away from responsibility…

  20. Posted by Brian

    Uhm, until the actual point of the sale, anything and everything is the current “owners” to do with as they please. If they want to try to sell it without a furnace, and someone will sign off on buying it, then no, there’s nothing the bank can do about it.
    Now, if there’s an agreement in place, and THEN the stuff goes away (after the inspection, close of escrow, etc.) then yeah, there’s a good case for legal action.
    Now, I’m no lawyer, and I don’t play one on TV… but I married one.

  21. Posted by steve

    uhm, until the actual sale, anything and everything attached to the home is collateral for a loan held, at this point, by the taxpayers. (adding insult to injury, it is a loan they probably haven’t serviced in quite some time.)
    that’s the reason, for example, that the owners are required to carry hazard insurance. you see, if they actually owned it and didn’t have a mortgage, then they could do whatever they liked, subject, of course, to the approval of the SF building dept.
    I really hope that at some point, some bank or insurance company steps up and makes an example of these d-bags.

  22. Posted by JimBobJones

    “Now, I’m no lawyer”
    You should have started and ended your post with that, Brian. The property secures the mortgage, so there is an agreement in place. Furthermore, there’s a contract to buy the house, so there are actually two agreements in place.

  23. Posted by resp

    1. maybe the owner is a HVAC contractor and this is part of his inventory.
    2. maybe this is a new furnace the owner planned to install and now is taking.
    3. a new furnace for this building would cost ~$1000. a used one is barely worth the cost of ripping it out and paying laborers to move it. waste of time.
    3. if the owner is just taking it cuz he’s a bitter f**k, he’d be better off loosening a toilet connection or cutting a few beams.
    [Editor’s Note: Based on a drive by to confirm, it wasn’t one or two.]

  24. Posted by J.P.

    According to Property Shark, one of the people listed on a recent sale is a contractor. Their company, Golden Gate Construction Company uses 2874 Bush as their business address. It seems that if the company is destroying the property, this could be reported to the Contractor’s State License Board. This seems like a great way to lose your Contractors’ License.

  25. Posted by anonn

    I viewed the property. How many of you stone casters actually saw it?

  26. Posted by Shza

    No one’s casting any stones at the property, anonn. I don’t know where that post is coming from.
    The ire here has all been directed appropriately at the thief who thinks he’s entitled to destroy and steal because he signed onto a mortgage he couldn’t afford.
    I don’t see a single comment about the quality or value of the house, good or bad.

  27. Posted by sparky-b

    They’re not casting stones, I agree. But, the talk about “making upgrades” is way off base this place has not been touched.

  28. Posted by anonn

    Huh? “Thief” ?
    Did you see the contract? Did you see the shabby state of the house? Do you know what’s going to happen to this house? Do you understand the play that any buyer would make? Do you realize that this seller is probably doing the buyer a favor by removing this stuff?
    What a joke. Some of you really need to not talk. Implying crime when you know less than nothing.

  29. Posted by EBGuy

    Could someone with ‘access’ please just call the listing agent and ask if some appliances and fixtures were excluded in the sales contract. Or at least tell them that SS has a candid camera shot and welcome them to comment…

  30. Posted by Shza

    Did you see the contract? Did you see the shabby state of the house? Do you know what’s going to happen to this house? Do you understand the play that any buyer would make? Do you realize that this seller is probably doing the buyer a favor by removing this stuff?
    This just strikes me as more of your usual arguing for the sake of arguing. Aside from maybe the first one, none of these rhetorical questions are relevant to the conversation in this thread. I don’t really care — I’m not terribly invested in this conversation; it just seemed like an odd place for you to try to pick a fight.

  31. Posted by anonn

    Or how about this, the guy is a contractor. And contractors sometimes store things like parts of a furnace in their garages.
    ooooooh! Somebody call the state licensing bureau!
    Yay internet! “Information” becomes subjective, once again.
    Pretty irresponsible one, SS. Thumbs down.
    [Editor’s Note: Prior to publishing we drove by to confirm the furnace was coming out of the house rather than simply storage.]

  32. Posted by anonn

    It doesn’t bother you when people who really don’t know what they’re talking about call others thieves, or imply that they’re acting illegally and should have their licenses seized, etc, eh shza?
    Well, that sort of stuff bothers me.
    To each his or her own.

  33. Posted by R

    The stupid thing is that furnace is essentially worthless. As Resp pointed out, it’s likely worth less than the cost to have it removed. I have a very similar one, I wish someone would steal it from me, then I could buy a new one.

  34. Posted by steve

    if the property is being delivered in the same or better condition as the original sale (or last refinancing), great. if the property is in worse shape, I hope the bank and the insurance company follow every criminal and civil remedy to recover our money.
    this is a general statement that applies to every short sale and should not be controversial. if the banks and their shareholders were eating the losses I wouldn’t care, but now that we all are, I do.

  35. Posted by EBGuy

    Well, that sort of stuff bothers me.
    What bothers me, is, “short and strip” makes absolutely no sense — so I’m guessing this is not what’s happening. The reason to do a short sale is to take less of a hit to your credit rating than a foreclosure. The house is unlikely to close if you strip it, and the seller opens themselves up to lawsuits from more individuals than just the bank. The economically rational thing to do (if you don’t care about your credit score) is to hunker down, wait for the foreclosure, and then go the ‘cash for keys’ route (or strip if the bank misunderestimates your business acumen).
    steve, you keep talking about criminal charges. My understanding is that ‘stripping’ (before the sale closes, of course!) is strictly a contractual breach and that no criminal statutes have been broken. If you (or anyone else) thinks otherwise, please enlighten us by citing the statute that has been violated (as I could be wrong about this).

  36. Posted by steve

    ebguy: theft, vandalism, fraud. there is probably more to this story, but here is one example of someone serving time:
    http://www.poconorecord.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080625/NEWS/80625002/-1/NEWS05

  37. Posted by anonn

    Editor’s Note: Prior to publishing we drove by to confirm the furnace was coming out of the house rather than simply storage.
    How could you have been able to tell the difference?
    Those pipes look pretty shiny and metallic for an ancient house such as this one.
    Come on, man.
    [Editor’s Note: Other than the fact that where the furnace once was in the garage, it was no more?]

  38. Posted by EBGuy

    He was convicted of defrauding creditors and fraud in insolvency in April.
    Steve, thanks for the link. It does appear to me to be a special case that involved someone before the court in bankruptcy proceedings (IANL, so I could be quite wrong). Still, heartening to see someone get the book thrown at them (a MB, to boot).
    Here’s the relevant section of California CIVIL Code:
    CALIFORNIA CODES
    CIVIL CODE
    SECTION 2920-2944.7
    2929. No person whose interest is subject to the lien of a mortgage may do any act which will substantially impair the mortgagee’s security.
    It’s not clear to me if criminal charges can result from violating this section.

  39. Posted by steve

    EBGuy, assume I am renting your house and return it you without appliances, plumbing and copper. is it your belief that your rememdies are strictly civil? sadly, you would likely have a hard time interesting the police in the matter, but I would hope that criminal laws would still proscribe my actions.

  40. Posted by Po Hill Jeff

    Why hasn’t anyone called the number for the listing agent prominently displayed on the side of the house and asked them if this was kosher?
    (Note: I mean one of the people who’ve been by. I can’t read it from the image…)

  41. Posted by stupified

    Wow annon, I’m a little surprised to see that your post above that challenges the editor did not get “edited” out….. because my similar challenge….. was “edited out”.
    Editor……. do you really expect us us to believe you or some staffer drove by to verify the “status” of the furnace before “going to print”. That is just absurd friend ….. PUHLEEEZZZZ ….. but nice attempt at CYA.
    I’ve never visited North Korea but I hear this kind of journalism flourishes there.
    [Editor’s Note: Believe what you want, we did. In terms of your “challenge,” try something more than “PULEEEZZZZ…..BULLSHIT….LOL” next time, like perhaps some actual evidence to the contrary, a first hand report, or facts. We do our due diligence, do you?]

  42. Posted by Brahma (incensed renter)

    on December 9, 2009 5:34 PM, “diemos” wrote:

    Dear sweet mother of pearl. Where did people get the idea that a loan modification was a civil right. Pay the mortgage that you agreed to or hand back the house. It’s that simple.

    On that point, everyone interested should read the article that the New York Times published over the weekend on Saturday regarding banks facilitating refinancing:

    Mark Belvedere bought a condominium in a San Francisco suburb in early 2004 and refinanced it in 2005. He now owes $235,000 on a property that would sell for barely half that today.

    Note that the reporter doesn’t tell us if Mr. Belvedere got some cash out on that refi that took place less than two years after the purchase.

    Mr. Belvedere said he would be willing to live with all that lost equity if he could refinance his loan from a variable rate, which could eventually go as high as 12 percent, into a 30-year fixed term.

    Of course, the reporter doesn’t tell us here if Mr. Belvedere put a substantial amount down (which is in question because of who he borrowed from, see the next ‘graph). If not, then he didn’t have any “real” equity to lose and the amount he’s underwater is just due to leverage. Why didn’t he get a fixed rate with the refi that he already did?

    His lender said no, citing the diminished value of the property. “It makes no sense and is so frustrating,” Mr. Belvedere said.
    “I’m ready and willing to pay the mortgage for the next 30 years, but they act like they’d rather have me walk away.”…The current lending freeze owes much to the excesses of the boom. Mr. Belvedere’s lender, IndyMac, failed in 2008 from too many bad loans.

    Just like the 60’s, the credit bubble isn’t going to come back, Mr. Belvedere. Welcome to The New Sobriety!

  43. Posted by EBGuy

    Regarding Mr. Belvedere, it appears he purchased his condo for $230,000 in Dec. 2003, using a $184k (variable) first and a $34.5k (fixed) second. Say what you will about him using the condo as an ATM machine, but the bank WILL lose in a game of chicken with Mr. Belvedere. Christmas two years from now will certainly be interesting …

  44. Posted by Chad

    @stupified. [Removed by Editor]
    We believe what we believe.
    I do not know the SS editor at all personally, but in my years of cruising and participating in this forum and reading the editor’s writing and comments, I am certain that the editor is truly madly deeply in love with San Francisco’s real estate scene, and as such has absolutely no reason to lie to anyone on matters like this – the drive by the house.

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