5 Things San Francisco Home Buyers Should Know

Real estate is complex but it’s not rocket science. There are tried and true tips to the home buying and selling process. There are things that all San Francisco home buyers should know.

When you work with an agent, she or he should be educating you on these issues from the beginning. For example, I sit down with potential clients for an initial consultation. It’s a no-pressure meet & greet where we talk about the market, the buyer’s plans, answer preliminary questions and see if we’re a good fit.

But, the learning does not stop there. Each step of the way is the opportunity to ask questions and get clear, consistent answers about your options. If your agent is not answering your questions or is telling you what to do (rather than giving you choices to make), get a new one!

I read a lot of real estate articles online and off. Recently, I was introduced to U.S. News & World Report Online Real Estate section and the writer, Luke Mullins. He’s great! He provides clear tips on the process of buying or selling real estate whether a Mission Dolores condo or a Bernal Heights single family home. The info is relevant to today’s market as well.

For example, 5 Things Every Home Buyer Should Know includes the following:


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More San Francisco Homes Are Selling?

According to The Wall St. Journal, more homes in California are selling.

“California’s housing-market slump showed hints of improvement in March, with sales of existing single-family homes increasing 64% from the prior-year period and median home prices rising month-to-month for the first time since August 2007, according to a trade group report.”

Does this mean more homes in San Francisco are selling too? More on that later.


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Just 5 of the Reasons Why I Wish I Was a San Francisco First Time Buyer Right Now

Just 5 of the Reasons Why I wish I was a First Time Buyer Right Now:

1. I’d finally have a **** chance to get my first choice home rather than lose out over and over again in outrageous bidding wars!!

For the first time in many, many moons (most say since 1990-1991), San Francisco real estate is not a crazy seller’s market. The playing field is MUCH more even. In some micro-markets, it is even a buyer’s market.

In general, the market is balanced and for a chronically “low supply / high demand” city like San Francisco, this means the outlook is extremely good for home buyers.

Although this may last well into 2009, it will not last forever. SF has had a strong, expensive real estate market since the Gold Rush and this latest financial debacle is not likely to change this reality.

2. I could actually pay a decent price for my starter home.

Okay, there is no “fire sale” in San Francisco but there are some darn good values right now. Home price appreciation has stagnated and in many cases, home values are down (think lofts, TICs, some condos, and single family homes).

Over the long-term, even 5 years or more, San Francisco real estate prices remain way up. Remember, real estate is a long-term investment… However, in the short-term, prices are down or flat. This means a home buyer can expect to pay 2005/2006 prices for many properties.



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