Our latest Real Estate Case Study is about how we helped to sell a previously expired listing in Bernal Heights, San Francisco. As top listing agents in the SF Bay Area, we’re often asked by homeowners and prospective sellers what they can do if (but hopefully not when) their listing expires without selling. It’s a frustrating situation to be in to be sure, but it does NOT mean that your home is unsellable.

Expired Listing Case Study

We recently had a case where an expired listing in Bernal Heights came to us after being listed by another agent and lingering for months on the market. Today, we’re sharing that story as a real estate case study to help other sellers in similar situations. If this sounds like your situation, there is hope and we can help! Working with an experienced San Francisco listing agent and taking a fresh approach, you can absolutely reach a happy, realistic resolution. Let’s get into it.

Kitchen of expired listing in Bernal Heights San Francisco

The Problem: Unsold Expired Listing in Bernal Heights, San Francisco

The owners of our subject property, a single-family home in Bernal Heights, had moved out a few years back. After keeping the home as a rental property, they eventually decided it was time to sell. To list the property, they hired their former agent who helped them buy the home.

Unfortunately, after paying for staging and holding the home vacant for many months, no offers emerged. They were discouraged, frustrated and even a little worried. The market was supposedly strong—what happened?

They took some time to regroup and decided to go in a different direction and look for a new listing agent.

Family room of expired listing in Bernal Heights San Francisco

Hire the Right San Francisco Listing Agent For the Job

Having a real estate listing agent who knows the ins and outs of the listing process, has a strong network, and is up to speed on the local market is crucial when it comes to selling a property. A top San Francisco listing agent knows the market like the back of their hand. They have contacts to reach the right buyers, and they know how to market your property in the best light. Plus, their expertise means they can handle any bumps in the road with ease.

After their listing expired with another agent, this time the sellers wanted someone who was at the top of their game and truly an expert in the neighborhood. They also wanted someone who was honest and a straight shooter. They knew they needed a listing agent who is a great marketer with a sixth sense of how to prep, price and stage a home like theirs to attract local home buyers. And of course, they wanted an expert negotiator to help them net the most money possible.

After interviewing a couple of local top agents, they hired Danielle to represent their previously expired listing in San Francisco. They told her they appreciated her candid feedback and assessment of the pros and cons. They liked her approach and trusted her to manage the process.

Living area of expired listing in Bernal Heights San Francisco

Price and Presentation are Key to Home-Selling Success

With a mutual agreement to work together, we got to work on a plan that would highlight the property’s strengths and improve on the rest. The home had a flaw—no yard—which is a big negative in Bernal Heights, where most buyers want one. Danielle advised them to stage again, but with different designers.

Why Staging Matters in SF Bay Area Real Estate

First off, staging is NOT required to successfully sell a home, but we do recommend it to our seller clients in most cases. Because of the high cost of real estate here, most local homebuyers are looking for a mostly move-in ready property. It’s important to have a well-presented listing to stand out from the competition, much of which will also be staged.

However, not all staging is created equal! It’s also important to have a style that appeals to the specific buyer demographics and tastes in the area. The previous staging was not quite right for the Bernal Heights market. With over 20 years of experience in the San Francisco market and over 200 homes sold in Bernal Heights alone, our team has a deep understanding of what works in this local and hyper-local market. We use this experience to inform our work with stagers and sellers to make our listings stand out in a crowded market.

Price is a Seller’s Strongest Tool

Danielle also recommended a lower list price to get attention and make sure the listing was seen as new and fresh (since it was on the market only a few months prior). Pricing a property strategically is key in attracting buyer interest, generating offers, and ultimately netting the seller the most money at closing.

It’s all about finding that sweet spot—not too low to leave money on the table, but not so high that it scares away a segment of potential buyers. Our team uses our extensive market knowledge and experience to conduct a thorough analysis of comparable properties and trends, so we can price your home correctly from the start. This way, we can get the best results for you and help you achieve your goals in the shortest amount of time possible.

When a real estate listing expires in San Francisco, it usually comes down to a mismatch in price, presentation and buyer expectations. When we connect with a disappointed seller whose listing expired with another agent, our #1 focus is to create a strategy that puts these three factors in alignment.

Bedroom of expired listing in Bernal Heights San Francisco

The Results: Expired Listing Sold and Sellers Rejoice!

It worked! After two weeks of busy open houses and conversations with buyer agents and buyers behind the scenes, the sellers accepted a non-contingent, all-cash offer far exceeding their expectations. They were both shocked and thrilled. 

As always, the sellers really said it best. Here’s what they said in their 5-star review of working with Danielle and the Vivre Real Estate team:

Danielle and her team recently sold our house in Bernal Heights and they are true professionals. We closed in less than 14 days with no hassle. We had previously tried to sell this home with another agent, but this time Danielle made it happen. She is a great listing agent and the whole team is on top of everything. Her strategic lens to home sales was evident from the first conversation.

Seller’s Testimonial

(See more of our reviews on Yelp, Zillow and Google.)

It is always extremely gratifying to get great results for our clients. If this case study resonates with your own experience, whether you have been struggling to sell your home, or you are worried about certain aspects of your property, please get in touch with us for a no-pressure conversation to discuss your options. We are happy to help and grateful for the opportunity! Click here to contact us.

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