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September 6, 2022

Fast and Furious in the Fall, But Don’t Forget About the Slow Lane

313 Parnassus

Welcome to the Fall real estate season. Along with the Spring months, the Fall is a particularly busy time for local real estate. You’ll see a flood of new post-Labor Day listings hitting the market with a fury, upstaging the properties that have been listed for 30 days or more. Buyers run out to look at all the new, shiny inventory and completely forget about the opportunities that may exist with the “stale” properties.

It’ll be no different this year. August saw many buyers, sellers and real estate agents off on (overdue) vacations. The result? Fewer prospective buyers, sellers holding off on listing properties until the Fall and agents perhaps not being as aggressive about scheduling showings or calling their clients’ attention to languishing listings.

The market experienced its typical summer slowdown, and the pace was even more lackluster due to higher interest rates.

Now that Labor Day weekend has come and gone, here’s how the market is looking:

Single-Family Homes
# active listings: 285
Median list price: $1.7M
# of homes on market for 30+ days: 146
My 30+ day pick:
313 Parnassus | Cole Valley
3BR/2.5BA, 1 pkg

313 Parnassus Living Room

313 Parnassus is a lovely Arts and Crafts-style house with almost 2,000 square feet and a large garage (see photos above, courtesy Sereno Group). Located down the street from the UCSF campus, the home is a stone’s throw from Golden Gate Park, as well as Inner Sunset and Cole Valley retail. It’s been on the market since early August when it was initially listed for $2,750,000. That apparently was a bit too high for prospective buyers, but the recent $250,000 price reduction should jumpstart things for the Fall. Not bad for a neighborhood where single-family homes sell for more like $2.8M+.

# active listings: 630
Median list price: $1,167,000
# of homes on market for 30+ days: 444
My 30+ day pick:
2829 California #3 | Pacific Heights
2BR/2BA, 1 pkg

I am loving the exclusive-use patio at 2829 California Street #3.  This bi-level home in a 13-unit elevator building has a great floor plan, with a primary bedroom and bath on the upper level. The living area and its wall of windows open out to the large patio. There’s also a great-looking kitchen with Bertazzoni gas range and Carrara marble countertops. One-car parking (regular space, not mechanical lift) and a very central location at California and Divisadero where you’ll find B Patisserie one door down—along with a host of restaurants and retail within a two-block radius. First listed in mid June for $2,195,000 and currently holding steady at $2,050,000. FYI, the seller paid $2M in 2018. (Listing courtesy Compass)

There will be a lot of other good opportunities out there this Fall.  Make sure you don’t overlook any of these possibilities, with the bonus being that you can potentially get into a non-competitive offer situation—and a sale price that’s lower than asking. One of my colleagues had a nice two-bedroom condo in an excellent Pacific Heights location that had been sitting on the market. The buyer ended up being a woman who had visited the property at the very first open house, but wasn’t quite ready to pull the trigger. She returned two months later when the property was still active, and made an all-cash offer for slightly under the recently reduced list price. The sale closed successfully—a great example of sellers being willing to negotiate and buyer making a strategic, desirable offer.

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