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One Buyer Journey to 234 Eureka Street in San Francisco with Kevin+Jonathan — A Relocation Story

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Eureka! They Found ... well ... Eureka (Street)

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From There to Here: A Buyer Journey with some Airplanes Thrown In

Just some of the houses considered and the round about way our clients went back to one of the first houses they saw with us.

How one set of buyers' house hunting journey went and some insights for your consideration

Referred to us by some of our favourite clients (yes, note the spelling) David, Felicity and their two young children were slated to come back to San Francisco having lived in London for the past few years. Native Britons originally David and Felicity had lived in Noe Valley before the neighborhood left a positive and lasting impression.

From fixer to finished home at Eureka and 19th Street in San Francisco.

This go around the couple is now a young family with a solid budget but a list of goals — central, walkable location in a house that had a blend of traditional finishes on the one hand but modern features that acknowledges San Francisco’s modernity. Plus, because the family has a lot of stuff that was being shipped from the UK, so square footage was also important. And because they have two children now the house they were to get had to have durable finishes and yard space.

We explored their core neighborhood but also ventured out a little bit into Cole Valley, Parnassus Heights and Eureka Valley. We helped them explore houses that were both on market and off-market listings both during their visits and via YouTube video walk-throughs.

We considered getting a not-perfect big house that had size but the layout, location and finishes weren’t right. Combined with the fact that the seller wanted a rent-back after close of escrow.  

Another house had amazing finishes, solid location but while bedroom and bathroom count matched their requirements where those bedrooms and bathrooms were in relationship to each other combined with a feeling that the house was narrower than it should be disqualified this one, which sold to a single professional who lives in New York half the year.

The house our clients kept coming back to was 234 Eureka, which was a fixer house purchased in 2016 as a 3-bed, 1.5-bath, 1600-sqft fixer for $1.66M.

234 was modernized, brightened and enlarged with an unfinished basement being turned into a pragmatic second family room with an extra bedroom and direct yard access. The house debuted as 4-bed, 3.5-bath, nearly 2,700-sqft modern home with an extra deep terraced backyard with a great location at $3.495M in the fall of 2017. After not selling last year the price was dropped to $3.295M and taken off over the holidays where the seller finished landscaping the backyard and the stagers tweaked the property’s interior wall colors.

Our clients saw the house on an early scouting trip late last year but hadn’t seen it as a family with all its members in tow. Jonathan, however, kept to his initial thought that this was the house for our clients. After everyone landed on our shores earlier this month the young family went back to the tweaked house over its two open weekends and it all made sense. Relisted at $2.995M after the New Year,  our clients asked us what would it take to get the house now.

We suggested a strong, fast bid at $3.295M with a short close. Indeed, our contingency-free offer had a 6-hour response deadline and was accompanied by a fully signed disclosure package with the initial deposit being the entire balance for the house. Yes, it worked and our clients got their house a week after sending in the great offer.

Since closing, we’ve been working with David and Felicity on getting their home setup before they move in with plans for a kid-friendly and upgraded back garden (aka back yard) and customization of the house’s lighting fixtures along with the kid-gates they’ll need for the next few years. 

Watch our video walk-through of the home here on YouTube.

234 Eureka
234 Eureka

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This Could Be That...

Our clients said they liked a nearby house that had a contemporary dark exterior paint color but they couldn’t envision what one candidate house would look like after cosmetic upgrades. So, we took our best shot at extrapolating what that house could have looked like thanks to PhotoShop.

WHAT BUYERS WANT

What was the right mix for these buyers? Having lived in San Francisco before David and Felicity knew the City well but also admitted that there were neighborhoods that they knew they could possibly like but hadn’t really had a need to consider before. But beyond that here’s just some of the factors they wanted in their new home: 

  • Walkability (but not too far up a hill)
  • Proximity to schools
  • Proximity to work
  • Layout — namely three bedrooms on one level so parents could be on the same level as the kids
  • Layout — an open layout but also a space for the adults to entertain
  • Storage
  • Finishes — not too modern, not too old
  • A great kitchen with storage
  • A private yard for the kids to play with and a place to plant a lime tree
  • Parking
  • Durability
  • Price and value

Commanding Results — Ahead of Schedule. Successful Selling and Better Buying

When I had my first phone conversation with Kevin and Jonathan over a year ago, my gut told me that THIS is the team I want to work with when the time came for me to sell. I didn’t even bother interviewing other agents. They worked with me on both selling and buying transactions and the results below speak from themselves.

In addition, this was all done through the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays.

  • 6 days: the time from listing my last home to being in contract with a cash offer at 27% over asking
  • 19 days: escrow days for selling my last home
  • 2 days: the time period between closing on my last home and finding a target property to buy
  • 7 days: from the list date to being the winning bid against 18 other bids.

We weren’t the highest bid, nor were we a cash offer, but we were the best presented one.

In this highly competitive real estate environment, this is where Kevin and Jonathan truly excelled in providing guidance and getting all our ducks in a row. Presentation matters!!! 15 days: escrow length for the new home. 8 weeks: from the day I listed my last home for sale to the day I had keys in my hand to my new home (Yes, it only took 8 weeks) If there was one word to describe my experience with Kevin and Jonathan, it’s “smart”. They know the current environment and also helped educate and guide me to getting both buying and selling done.

After selling, I had a lot of fear I wouldn’t be able to find a new home. I’ve heard countless stories and read countless articles of buyers losing out to cash offers and it was discouraging. With their help, we were able to orchestrate a truly competitive non-cash offer. I honestly didn’t think this would all be done before 2018 arrived, and now I’m an extremely happy client.

— Clodel G. 

Seller, Buyer, SOMA and the Excelsior

App and Online Marketing Professional Lead for large retailer in the daytime, amazing home styling and designer at nighttime


Snaps from his SOMA Listing at 18 Boardman. This mixed-use building was listed for $1.6M and sold in just 6 days for $2.038M to an all-cash, non-contingent offer. Clodel had his choice of the multiple offers that came in after we distributed 50 disclosure packages during the 5 days we were on the open market including one that was higher in price but financed and and slightly weaker in terms. We can’t wait to see what he’ll do with his new place in the up and coming Excelsior District.

131 Peru — Sold! Buyer Represented

Congrats to our client Clodel on getting his next home which will be the nicest, gourmet-kitchen house in the area soon enough. We beat out 18 offers and submitted the best and winning offer.

 

The Search. The Place. The Right Home.

Big props to Kevin, who was my buying agent a few years back! My late review now is really just piling on the praise.

To cut to the chase, buying a good place in SF requires that your agent understands the market, knows what is and isn’t a real neighborhood (see: “The Quad”), knows who is representing the seller, and can competently assess the risk areas of a house (when so many are over 100 years old).

With those skills, Kevin helped keep me steady and guide me through the emotional rollercoaster of real estate in SF to finally have a place to call my own!

Repeat Buyers + Sellers in the Inner Parkside

Kevin and Jonathan helped us buy our SF home back in March of 2015 and then skillfully helped us sell the same home a little over two years later when family and career opportunity took us out of SF.

On the buying end, Kevin was helpful in augmenting our own search efforts with his own perspective and agent insights.  He provided feedback on all our potential homes, being honest with us about the pros/cons and market around each.  When we found our perfect home, that’s when the magic kicked in.  Kevin helped us expeditiously navigate the offer process and close with a pre emptive offer that we felt good about.

Two years later, when we realized we were going to have to move much sooner than we had originally planned, we tapped Kevin and Jonathan again.  They both guided us on making the small investments that would help us get the best price for our home.  They could tell we didn’t want to do too much, as our home was a full remodel just two years prior, so they focused on the most important stuff.  When it came time to show and sell the house, they were great.  This was especially useful since we had already moved out of town.  But, with this team, we felt confident.  Once again, they expertly led the negotiation process getting us a great price!

— Navin and Varsha

Buyers and Sellers

Inner Parkside

Take a look at the listing photos from when we sold:

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