As we revealed last year, an offer for the infamous seven-bedroom home at 224 Sea Cliff Avenue, which was shielded from foreclosure by way of a bankruptcy filing, is in the hands of the property’s bankruptcy trustee and slated to be accepted in three weeks.

That being said, an overbid of $7 million or more plus an agreement to assume and resolve the $90,000 lien against the property that was secured by the Bay Conservation and Development Commission for the illegally constructed stairway behind the home, which leads down to the secluded cove below and was a frequently touted selling point for the property, but will need to be removed, could displace the current offer.

And yes, the bankruptcy sale will result in the property being delivered free and clear of all existing liens, financial interests, and subordinate loans, other than as outlined above. We’ll keep you posted and plugged-in.

17 thoughts on “Infamous Sea Cliff Mansion Slated to Be Sold”
  1. I’d gladly pony up the seven large — clearing the way for an undoubtedly easy, smooth transaction — but no *way* I’m stepping to $7,090,000.

  2. As a frequent visitor to Baker Beach when I lived in the city, this was always one of my favorite houses in SF and I would consider it a landmark. Unfortunate that it has had such… misfortunes.

  3. Owner should have painted the stairs and walls to match the cliffs. Added Trompe l’Oeil Art to Fool the Eye.
    No one would have noticed the stairs. As it stand now the stairs are garish and ugly. Good for BCDC to insist they be removed.

      1. The only way to make it look worse is to paint it an even louder color. While removal won’t leave that cliffside in pristine natural condition, it can be done in a way that most people won’t even notice that a structure was once there, especially from a hundred yards out in the sea.

  4. That ocean access is a cool feature. That said, someone standing on the beach during a surge would be taken-out to sea in short order.

    1. I thought it was cool too but then realized that it is more of a “party trick” feature of the house. You go there a couple of times at first. Then of course you take every house guest down there. But soon the novelty wears off of descending seven stories to reach a tiny cove that is in the shade for much of the day.

    2. Dixonsst

      The Coast Guard Helicopter and CHP helicopters fly right over my house while on beach/surf rescues. Every Wednesday the Coast Guard conducts training right off Rockaway and Sharp Park beaches in Pacifica.

  5. My title database indicates that there are multiple loans senior in recording date to the one that initiated a Trustee Sale in 2023. It will be an educational case study if the foreclosing party is able to extinguish those older loans and retain any rights through borrower bankruptcy superior to the older debt. Or perhaps the data I have is bad. I think this house remains financial excrement circling the bowl and doubt that the contract buyers will wind up with anything.

    To label the low-tide sand at the base of the house a “cove” is more than generous. The stupid stairway has the utility of a convertible car in the Minnesota winter. Fun in concept but, like many other outdoor entertaining spaces in San Francisco, virtually unusable. And now, someone will have to pay to tear it out, no doubt at great expense and with great attention paid by mindful people in fleece jackets and aging Subarus.

    I hope all the scolds will express as much enthusiasm to Pelosi, Laphonsa, and Padilla to decry the state of the Federally-managed China Beach facility, a rusting hulk that mars the same stretch of coastline far more than the salmon-tinted stairway. Will the proposed renovation ever be completed? It’s only been decrepit for 30 years.

    Can a mansion perched at the edge of the most beautiful coastal entrance to California have negative value?

    1. “Can a mansion perched at the edge of the most beautiful coastal entrance to California have negative value?”
      I don’t expect it to be perched there a few decades hence. Same for some of the neighbors. Take a drive south to Esplenade Avenue in Pacifica if you disagree.

  6. Staircase down to water is ugly needs to be removed and replaced with some kind of lift. The lift doesn’t need to be enclosed elevator, it might be possible to get permit approvals for lift for moving cargo only, for loading and unloading surf kayak or some such semi plausible sounding reason. Then the owner takes their chances with the city if they get reported for letting people ride it.

    1. Hypothetical legal question. Could there possibly be some claim to prescriptive easement rights if land beyond property lines was openly and notoriously used for extended period of time?

      1. It seems like this question is put to the test, not at all hypothetically, on DTSF sidewalks and in parks every day.

        1. Har har. Very droll. IANAL, but I don’t think that usage is putting any easement rights claims to the test. Just going by what I’ve read in textbooks, in California, a user of land that wishes to establish a prescriptive easement has to prove his or her use of another’s land was continuous and uninterrupted for five years. The people you’re talking about are sometimes rousted weekly, if not daily. In case you weren’t in town for the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation leaders’ summit, many, if not most encampments were removed wholesale.

          Mayor London Breed’s policies of using the threat of arrest against homeless people to clear encampments off city streets went so far that a U.S. District Court Magistrate judge issued an injunction in 2022 to put a stop to it after a group of homeless people and the Coalition on Homelessness sued The City over them. And even assuming that injunction was in maximum effect, there are still three other sections of the penal and health codes authorizing police or other authorities to move or dismantle encampments, based on “willfully and maliciously obstruct[ing] the free movement of any person on any street, sidewalk, or other public place or on or in any place open to the public” or “Any accumulation of filth, garbage, decayed or spoiled food, unsanitary debris or waste material, or decaying animal or vegetable matter” that could and still are, being used to clear sidewalks and parks.

          So, again as a layman, I’d feel comfortable concluding that people adversely using downtown S.F.’s sidewalks and parks wouldn’t be able to show continuous and uninterrupted use for the required period, and no judge would actually recognize a prescriptive easement for them.

          1. OK, OK, now that you’ve spoiled the fun, I’ll attempt to answer ‘Fact’s query, with the same NAL proviso…tho I did have some exposure to the issue year’s ago when two neighbor’s became involved in just such a question (which – between two private parties – I’m thinking is much more the norm): and my answer, unsurprisingly, is “no”. And the main reason is the “open and notorious” provision – which of course is why the sidewalk/park mention, tho facetious, is relevant – since the usage isn’t visible to the normal person and (according to the article) the property line was misrepresented. I don’t doubt that a claim could be made, and it might even pass the non-frivolous threshold, but I don’t think it would prevail.

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