Purchased for $2,942,500 in September of 2012, which was roughly $1,468 per square foot but 8 percent under asking at the time, the “exclusive,” three-bedroom, three-bath penthouse unit #18D atop “San Francisco’s premier luxury high-rise” at 219 Brannan Street (The Brannan) returned to the market priced at $3,495,000 or roughly $1,743 per square foot this past March, a sale at which would have represented total appreciation of 18.8 percent for the luxury unit over the past eleven years or less than 2 percent per year.

Reduced to $3,245,000 in April, the listing for the 2,005-square-foot unit with 11-foot-tall “sparkling glass walls [and] windows showcasing front row views of the Bay Bridge and San Francisco skyline from every primary room in the home” was then removed from the MLS in July.

Having been quickly re-listed for $2,875,000, marked as sold, and then delisted anew from the MLS all in one day, 219 Brannan Street #18D has just quietly sold “at asking” for $1,434 per square foot according to all industry stats and aggregate reports.

While $1,434 per square foot certainly “isn’t cheap,” as some like to say, it is 2.3 percent cheaper than eleven years ago on an apples-to-apples basis and within 2.3 percent of the $1,401 per square foot ($2,810,000) that the premier South Beach unit fetched in 2005 (despite the “at asking” sale and fact that the frequently misreported index for San Francisco condo values is “still up over 40 percent!” over the same period of time).

10 thoughts on “Premier Penthouse Unit Quietly Trades Down”
  1. I think it’s clear from the properties featured here over the past several months that the socketsite editor is in the market for a penthouse.

    1. But only in “SF’s premier luxury high-rise”. Happily there seem to be many, many, many buildings that answer to that description. (If you want to pay only three-figures/sf, I guess you have to settle for the 1285th best building…or such)

  2. $1,500 a foot in 2012! Wow. Somehow I feel like you could have gotten a lot more for your $3M in Fall 2012 than this. Also, I always feel underwhelmed by the living spaces in these units. Really small to mediocre living+dining+kitchen spaces for the price you’re paying.

  3. Great buy. 2000 sq ft, mature building with strong HOA, best private heated outdoor pool in SF, two car parking, 10-12 foot ceilings. Very odd finishes hurt this unit (stone lodge like fireplace veneer???) as do 7% rates. Lesson to all, timing is everything. In 2015-19 this unit would have fetched $3.5MM handily. Identical unit below sold for $3.6MM 26 months ago in the era of 3% money.

  4. The Brannan was THE premier South Beach condo building. Working backwards on the inflation calculator from this price to 2005, this price is the equivalent of paying $1.83M for this unit instead of the 2.810 it sold for back then, about 35% off.

    Which would have been an appropriate price for about 1999 if I recall. All this unit has done is take a roundtrip on an interest rate ride that fed not only the value of housing, but speculative investments in tech companies.

    How far this spreads is anyone’s guess.

    1. hill, would you like to give us the address of this “water treatment plant” that you claim stinks up this property? Do you mean the one at 7th&berry, about a mile away, that has been there for at least 20 years without being declared a public nuisance and getting the dozens of nearer condo buildings to go after it? I think you’re doing a drive-by negging of this property. I will not speculate on why you might be doing that. I will also note that I have driven by and biked by the 7th&berry facility many times and never smelled anything.

    2. Some ten years ago, the City started using bleach en lieu of flushing the sewer pipes with water proper. It gets smellier in some parts than others, including the Embarcadero

  5. I live around the corner in the Oriental Warehouse and am not aware of a nearby water treatment plant, though I have smelled some pretty awful smells walking along the Embarcadero, especially by Pier 30. I visited the penthouse and liked it, but thought it needed a thorough updating. The rock-covered walls didn’t work for me at all.

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