Where Renting is Most Expensive in San Francisco

For those of us living in San Francisco, it’s no surprise the price of housing is a big concern both locally and nationwide. San Francisco in fact has been the country’s most expensive rental market (for one bedroom units) since August 2014 when our City by the Bay claimed the top spot over New York City.

Thanks to our friends at Trulia, here’s a breakdown of the San Francisco’s neighborhoods where rents are highest:

San Francisco Neighborhoods with the Most Expensive 1-Bedroom Rentals



 % of 1-Bedrooms Renting for $3,000+

Median Rent


Fisherman’s Wharf








Pacific Heights

73.8 %







Potrero Hill




Telegraph Hill




Mission Dolores




Cow Hollow




Hayes Valley









You may recall the story we published in September where we analyzed the financial question of Buying vs Renting and revealed this gem: Buying… is a better financial decision even if you could rent for free! Despite early indicators showing our local market could be leveling off, don’t expect prices to decrease unless we see an actual decrease in demand. 


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Meredith Martin is a Broker Associate at Paragon Real Estate Group and can be reached at Meredith@OpeningDoors.me


Let the Game of Chicken Begin!


We’ve seen more inventory since the fall selling season began than we have in several years in the city, with the excellent properties still moving at a record pace, and the just decent properties taking longer to sell.

What happens now to the fully respectable but possibly not excellent properties is a game of who will blink first– the buyers or the sellers. Will the sellers reduce their price, pull it from the market and re-list in spring, just rent it as every seller who doesn’t have to sell threatens to do, or employ the new trick du jour of dramatically dropping the price in order to inspire hopefully a new round of multiple bids?

The latest trick du jour seems to be the most successful, thus most popular tactic used to move properties that previously sold in a 2 week period. A dramatic price reduction (often below what the seller will actually take) is the hook to get fence-sitting buyers off their wait and see morals and actually take a stab at writing an offer. Once that hardest part, putting pen to paper so to speak, is done it’s just a matter of counters back and forth before we see who is going to do the blinking. Sometimes it’s the seller, often times it’s the buyer, and many times that is determined by how many buyers are enticed off the fence.

As we move into the final months of the year, look for more price reductions, far fewer listings, and a lot of withdrawals of properties from the market. Those withdrawn may be re-listed in the new year, but just as likely could be lost to the vast rental pool and disappear for a year or so.

I still maintain this is an excellent time to shop for a property, with the buyers bold enough to actually write an offer (below asking if the property warrants it) being the most successful. Come the new year, it remains to be seen if the steady drum roll of property appreciation will continue, but if history serves then spring will likely see a new round of price valuations hitting new highs.


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Meredith Martin is a Broker Associate at Paragon Real Estate Group and can be reached at Meredith@OpeningDoors.me


San Francisco Market Overview: October 2015


As we begin the last quarter of the year, change is in the air!

First, a surge of new listings hit the market last month — there’s more inventory in San Francisco now than there’s been at any time this year. Just over 40% of those properties for sale are priced under $1M (on par with Zillow’s recent valuation of homes across the city — see how your neighborhood stacks up). Certainly buyer demand is persisting, however competition for any given property is generally letting up… for now. The consensus among forecasters is that prices in the Bay Area will rise through 2016 with regional employment playing a critical role.

Second, there seems to be a shift in buyer demand as higher priced homes linger and take price reductions while relatively more affordable ones attract interest. The median sales price of properties in SF fell slightly last month to $1,150,000 and the number sold is down dramatically year-over-year. To further this point, the generally less expensive East Bay, for example, is experiencing an increase in number of sales from last year, and median prices in some cities — like Berkeley — continue to climb. [Those in SF’s ultra-high-end market still have plenty to choose from including these 3 Most Expensive.]

From now thru the end of the year — before the Spring 2016 selling season begins — should prove an opportune time for prospective buyers to make a move, and it may well be the best time to borrow money in recorded history.


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Meredith Martin is a Broker Associate at Paragon Real Estate Group and can be reached at Meredith@OpeningDoors.me


Haunted San Francisco


Before the City of San Francisco voted to stop burials within city limits in 1900, there were at least two dozen cemeteries in existence. While the non-Native deceased were exhumed and relocated to Colma in the following decades, there are plenty of the dead who’ve taken up permanent residence in San Francisco and made it one of the most haunted places in the country.

EscapeHere – 10 Most Haunted Cities in America:

Alcatraz Island remains the site of our country’s most famous prison. It is also popular for its paranormal activity. There have been reports of ghostly disturbances throughout the old cell blocks. The San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge is known to host a headless jogger that suddenly appears in the dense fog.


Travel Channel – Top Haunted Cities in America:

San Francisco is the hot travel destination these days. The San Francisco Bay has over a hundred haunted spots for you to check out during your trip. One place worth mentioning is Alcatraz, the famous maximum-security prison. Alcatraz hosted Al Capone, the famous Chicago gangster, during the final years of his life. To get to Alcatraz, you’ll need to take a ferry across San Francisco Bay. It’s definitely worth the trip to see the haunted prison.


USA Today – America’s Most Haunted Cities:

In the 1850s, Chinese immigrants came in droves to San Francisco, seeking their fortunes in gold. But when there was no gold to be found, they couldn’t afford to return to their families in China. Most took on menial jobs and died alone with unfulfilled dreams. These souls, the wandering ghosts of America’s oldest Chinatown, are said to inhabit its alleyways today.

Haunted Experiences: Take a Chinatown Ghost Tour to roam the gambling houses, narrow streets, and dark alleys at night. Paranormal activity has also been reported in two other popular areas. The Presidio, a retired military base with a hospital and cemetery, was featured on an episode of the Syfy Channel’s Ghost Hunters. At Alcatraz, some say they’ve heard voices from within cell walls and seen figures walking through cellblocks.


Alcatraz is perhaps the most well known of San Francisco’s sites for paranormal activity but it is far from the only hotspot for ghostly encounters. Explore the map below for stories of murder, suicide, tragedy and disaster– and visits from beyond the veil.


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Meredith Martin is a Broker Associate at Paragon Real Estate Group and can be reached at Meredith@OpeningDoors.me


The New Mansions of Noe Valley: Part II


Since The New Mansions of Noe Valley: Part I was published on October 14th, it should be noted that three of the eight homes on the market in the neighborhood are now in contract, and a 9th listing has come on the market: 439 Clipper Street. Let’s take a look at those eight $3M+ listings first reported, starting with the most expensive:


(Click photo/address for additional photos & details)


739 27th

739 27th Street, San Francisco | List Price: $5,395,000 | Status: Active (38 Days on Market)

Stunning rebuilt custom view residence nestled on the beautiful slopes of Noe Valley. Renovated down to the studs and thoughtfully designed, the main level features a grand open floor plan with gourmet kitchen and multiple outdoor experiences, including a roof deck with panoramic views of San Francisco! The lower level offers two generous guest bedrooms, each with en-suite bathrooms and a magnificent master suite and bath. Completing this splendid home, the garden level offers an additional guest quarters and expansive media room that leads out to the landscaped garden. (Source: MLS)

Draws: Beautiful finishes, Functional floor plan, Views, Elevator, Nice use of outdoor space




168 jersey

168 Jersey Street, San Francisco | List Price: $4,950,000 | Status: Pending Sale (5 Days on Market)

Beautiful contemporary design, views and a fabulous location in the heart of Noe Valley. Soaring 12’+ ceilings on main level, formal & informal living areas with plenty of room to roam, direct access to landscaped yard and a kitchen with top-of-the line appliances including 2 dishwashers, double ovens an induction cook-top. Three bedrooms on upper level with en-suite baths; laundry room. Lower level has fourth bedroom & bath, family room, wine cellar, wet bar. White oak & concrete flooring w/radiant heat throughout, Nest controls. Smart home features include door, light and sound mobile integration. Large garage. (Source: MLS)

Draws: Dramatic rooms, Great use of space, Only 1 block to 24th Street Shops, Excellent usable outdoor space with nano-walls from living area




4173 cesar chavez

4173 Cesar Chavez Street, San Francisco | List Price: $4,850,000 | Status: Active (39 Days on Market)

Located on a rare cul-de-sac, this 4 bedroom, 3 full bath, 2 half bath house is the definition of modern luxury living and refined design. With 3 bedrooms on the top level and an Aupair suite on the entry level, its cohesive layout exhibits custom millwork throughout. The residence features a custom kitchen, library, dining area, and great room that opens to a stunning outdoor seating area and fireplace. The home is completed with a Speakeasy wet bar, media room, 2 car side-by-side garage, an elevator, 3 fireplaces (2 indoor, 1 outdoor), 3 decks (front deck, master suite deck, roof deck), and picturesque views of Downtown. The attention to detail validates that no expense was spared in the design and construction of this modern masterpiece. (Source: MLS)

Draws: Dramatic rooms, Elevator, Excellent floor plan for entertaining, Located on cul-de-sac street




562 28th

562 28th Street, San Francisco | List Price: $4,750,000 | Status: Active (27 Days on Market)

New Modern Minimalist Masterpiece-exquisitely custom designed 4BD, 3.5BA home by MAK Studio. From concept thru construction, dedicated to the highest level of design & implementation for your most discerning buyers.Stunning Downtown, Twin Peaks & East Bay views. Dramatic yet pared down architectural features. Spectacular wood, glass & steel staircase & distinctive wood paneling thruout. MAIN LVL: expansive open floorplan, LR w/fireplace, DR, FR, KTCH w/16 ft. center island w/seating, Powder, wet bar, deck w/vues. UPPER LVL: Master Ste w/lux BA & deck, 2 BDs w/access to large deck, BA. LOWER LVL: Distinctive entry, Media RM, BD, BA, wet bar, 2 car grg. Architecturally inspired back yard w/lawn. A fusion of the finest design & functionality. (Source: MLS)

Draws: Stunning views, Graceful indoor-outdoor flow, Superior showpiece finishes




160 27th

160 27th Street, San Francisco | List Price: $4,395,000 | Status: Active (34 Days on Market)

This is ‘The New Noe’! Gorgeously renovated 4 bedroom, 3.5 bath, three level home. Open plan with a formal dining room, living room with fireplace, home office, large open eat-in kitchen and family room with floor to ceiling windows. The outdoor living area, that opens directly out from the kitchen, features IPE decking, gas fire pit, outdoor dining area, and extensive landscaping. High ceilings and modern finishes compliment the beautiful silver/white oak floors. Floating staircase leads to the bedroom level with master bedroom and spa inspired bath, two more bedrooms and full bath. Downstairs, you will find the 4th bedroom, full bath, and media lounge with wet bar. Luminalt Solar and 9 comfort zone radiant heat complete this ideal home. (Source: MLS)

Draws: Beautiful remodel, Great outdoor space, Central location within walking distance to shops




2212 castro

2212 Castro Street, San Francisco | List Price: $3,850,000 | Status: Active (10 Days on Market)

This extraordinarily crafted Noe Valley residence features 4 Bedrooms, 3.5 Bathrooms, and boasts over 4000 square feet of undeniable sophistication and elegance. Constructed of the finest materials and finishes, this magnificent 3-level home combines classic architectural elements with modern design features, and offers the dream floor plan. Showcasing incredible size and scale, 2212 Castro features ebony-stained Brazilian floors, soaring high ceilings, contemporary lighting, beautiful moldings and trim details, and is flooded with natural light. Located in the highly coveted Noe Valley neighborhood, 2212 Castro is a wonderful opportunity to acquire a truly exceptional San Francisco home. (Source: MLS)

Draws: Excellent floor plan for entertaining, Appealing price per square foot




346 duncan

346 Duncan Street, San Francisco | List Price: $3,200,000 | Status: Pending Sale (23 Days on Market)

This stunning light filled renovated home offers an open floor plan, fabulous outdoor space for entertaining, spectacular craftsmanship & custom designed finishes. Showcased throughout this magnificent home are newly refinished white oak hardwood floors w/inlay, crown moldings, wainscotting, hi ceilings, double thermo paned windows, skylights & recessed lighting. 4BR/3.5 remodeled BA’s, 2 offices, living room, dining room, remodeled eat-in kitchen, family room/media rm w/fireplace, family room/play rm on lower floor, laundry room, spacious garage w/interior access, 2nd parking spot on driveway, 2 walk-out decks, front patio, landscaped back yard/garden. CAT 5 wiring, wired for sound, radiant heating, security sys, newly painted interior. (Source: MLS)

Draws: Beautiful remodel, Appealing price per square foot




121 clipper

121 Clipper Street, San Francisco | List Price: $3,195,000 | Status: Active Contingent (33 Days on Market)

Behind the sleek, Victorian facade, you will find a remarkably remodeled home with all of today’s most desired modern finishes. This SFH masterfully features 4 spacious bedrooms, 3 designer bathrooms, and a separate front room perfect for an at-home office. The main level invites you into the open great room featuring a gorgeous kitchen with an oversized Calcutta marble island, and large seating and dining areas. This custom designed home is the perfect blend of entertaining and comfortable living with its meticulously designed floor plan, multiple decks, and deep, south-facing landscaped yard. Walker’s paradise – 93 walkscore – half a block from J Muni line, tech shuttles, restaurants and cafes on Church street and 24th street. (Source: MLS)

Draws: Lowest priced $3M+ home in Noe Valley, Excellent floor plan for entertaining, Excellent usable outdoor space


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Meredith Martin is a Broker Associate at Paragon Real Estate Group and can be reached at Meredith@OpeningDoors.me