388 Madison St., San Francisco

388 Madison St., San Francisco


Site Conditions

  • Rental home needed work
  • Sibling trustees with high expectations and conflict about the path forward
  • Very tight resurfacing budget

Results of Our Work

  • 16 offers, 7 days on market 
  • Listed at $1.099M, sold for $1.475M, $376,000 over asking
  • 500% ROI, $72,735 invested in resurfacing, $8,450 for staging

The Thanksgiving Offering

Around Thanksgiving, Craig met two sisters who had inherited their 1950s-era family home. The 5-bedroom, 2-bath house, adjacent to McLaren Park, had great potential and commanding views of the San Francisco skyline. Unfortunately, it was in severe disrepair with subtenants living in the unwarranted ground floor unit.  

The sisters had grand plans and grand sales price ambitions based on misinformation and inaccurate assumptions. It seemed they also had nothing to fund their plans and vehemently disagreed on every decision. What fun! 

As with most rentals, the new owners knew little about the property. Through our discovery process we professionally evaluated the home and recommended actions based on facts, not hopeful thinking.

To help them reach their goals, Craig arranged interest-free financing and a lot of project management to transform their home.

We conducted all elective and mandatory inspections/compliance certifications to generate contingent-free offers. Dry-rotted wood had to be replaced. And because of the tight budget, we skipped painting the exterior and just gave the home’s front façade a fresh coat.

By December 15, we finished all the work. A week later, we had a buyer contract, and by January 20, the siblings had the proceeds. 


Living Room (before)​​​​​​​ The room was bland and closed off from the staircase.

Living Room (after) ​​​​​​​In three weeks, we redid the floors, lighting and retexturing, creating a much more open, contemporary experience.

Kitchen (before)​​​​​​​ The tiny kitchen presented our largest challenge.

Kitchen (after) ​​​​​​​On time and on budget, our designer and transformations team crafted a modern palette, more openness, natural light and an expansive quartz bar counter ideal for family living.

Hall Bathroom (before) With no master bedroom suite, the upper hall bathroom played a vital role, yet was at the end of its useful life.

Hall Bathroom (after) ​​​​​​​A large mirror, gray quartz slabs, black hardware and a fresh coat of paint was the right formula to attract our young, targeted buyer.

Entryway (before) Green and brown color palette, shiny flooring, ornate front door from the ‘90s. Not what the highest paying buyers in today’s marketplace are looking for.

7b – Entryway (after) Wide-plank flooring, neutral tones and a solid core door with black hardware became the new standard throughout the home. Buyers loved the scale of this oversized entry foyer.

Backyard (before) ​​​​​​​Few aspects of a home encourage a buyer’s mind to wander and ponder bad thoughts than a border fence in disrepair. It’s ideal when the yard presents the buyer with endless possibilities.

Backyard (after) More better—minimal investment to clean up and simplify the setting and let the buyer envision the lifestyle potential.






Recent Blog Posts

Stay up to date on the latest real estate trends.

58 Martha Ave., San Francisco

October 19, 2023

The Sputtering Real Estate Market: We targeted buyers who would be willing to compete for the home-expanding families. They'd love the neighborhood and the home's many… Read more

388 Madison St., San Francisco

February 13, 2023

The Thanksgiving Offering: Around Thanksgiving, Craig met two sisters who had inherited their 1950s-era family home. The 5-bedroom, 2-bath house, adjacent to McLaren P… Read more

1441 Nye St., San Rafael

February 9, 2023

No Need to Wait for Spring: The sellers had two adorable, very active small children. So no surprise, the home looked lived-in damaged hardwood floors, loud child-them… Read more

68 Broadmoor, San Anselmo

February 9, 2023

Out-of-State Sellers Face Damaged Rental Property: The owners, an out-of-state elderly couple, planned to sell this rented property in a 1031 exchange. But the tenants… Read more

2431 24th St., San Francisco

January 21, 2023

The Realtor to Friend Crossover: In 2011, Craig represented these clients when they bought the duplex, in poor condition with a difficult layout. But add imagination a… Read more

775 Congo St., San Francisco

January 21, 2023

Upgraded Property for Half of Budget Other Agents Advised: To sell this four-floor Glen Park home, we targeted families with children, work-from-home couples and dog l… Read more

246 Alta Loma, Daly City

July 22, 2022

Out-Of-State Sellers Take The Harder Route: This Daly City family home had been converted to a rental and went untouched for years. The owners, living in the Midwest, … Read more

556 Stone Dr., Novato

July 21, 2022

A Neighborhood Record Sale Price: The out-of-the-area owners had rented out this home for many years. They were surprised at how tattered the property was once the ten… Read more

2979 23rd St., San Francisco

July 8, 2022

Time to Sell and Buy Outside the City: Craig had sold this lower-level condo in the Mission District to the same couple almost 10 years ago. Now they wanted to move ou… Read more

Let’s Talk

By phone, Zoom, or in person. We’ll get your questions answered.