535 Niagara St., San Francisco

535 Niagara St., San Francisco

Site Conditions

  • Evidence of homeless people living in the garage

  • Gas lines were inoperable, PG&E had to replace them 

  • Two-bedroom home is less sought after

Results of Our Work​​​​​​​ 

  • 2 bids received​​​​​​​ 
  • Sold for $1,072,500, $151,000 over asking 
  • ROI: purchased at $690,000. Invested $125,050 + carrying costs $42,000 = $858,000
  • After transaction costs, net return was $168,000 = 127% ROI

Home Flippers, Go for Three Bedrooms Minimum

This two-bedroom home in San Francisco’s Ingleside had been abandoned for eight years, inherited by an East Coast owner. Craig represented him and the developer client who bought the property to flip. 

The seller had missed PG&E notices on upcoming street gas line replacements, so no natural gas fed into the property. We needed a miracle to get PG&E to assess, price, calendar and confirm the gas re-install. It took six months, but first we were required to put in a new furnace, water heater and inside gas lines.

Homeless people had been living in the garage. With much effort, we fully restored possession to the owner. Other sale deterrents included litter and abandoned cars on the street and an adjacent 40-foot drop to Highway 280 with roaring commute traffic. 

The investor was unfamiliar with San Francisco building permits, guidelines, and the enforcement code. So he opted not to build a third bedroom, which I projected would’ve bumped the ROI into the 250% zone. 

The new buyers were very patient. Closing was repeatedly delayed, requiring weeks of additional amendments, inspections, reinspections, and final permit sign offs.

Front of House (before)​​​​​​​ The years of neglect were obvious.

Front of House (after)​​​​​​​ New windows, new paint and minimal landscaping updates made a big difference.

Garage (before)​​​​​​​ The two-car tandem garage needed cleanup but had lots of room for expansion. 

Garage (after)​​​​​​​ We presented it clean and buttoned up, but the contractor decided not to expand because he was unfamiliar with San Francisco’s building code.

Kitchen (before)​​​​​​​ Nothing to salvage here, start with a clean slate.

Kitchen (after)​​​​​​​ We centered the sink between the two view windows for maximum appeal. The cool-hued kitchen showed as spotless and modern.  

Kitchen (before)​​​​​​​ We considered removing the wall between the kitchen and dining room, but limited kitchen cabinet space ended that exploration.  

Kitchen (after)​​​​​​​ Rebuilt to accommodate new, larger appliances. Contemporary cabinets, handles and flooring made the room fresh and attractive.

Bathroom (before)​​​​​​​ The bathroom was small, old and pink. We could do something about the old and pink part.

Bathroom (After)​​​​​​​ We opted for a clean, classic marble look. The large mirror bounced sunlight around the room, thanks to the skylight above.

Bath (before)​​​​​​​ The shower stall followed suit—small and pink.

Bath (after)​​​​​​​ Carefully placed pebble stone in the shower created a visual waterfall, with a similar variegated color on the floor for a subtle elegance.

Living Room (before)​​​​​​​ The fireplace had potential as a focal point. 

Living Room (after)​​​​​​​ We took full advantage of the few windows, resurfaced the fireplace surround and refinished the beautiful floors. The staging enhanced the comfortable, up-to-date appeal.

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