It’s Time for Trusted & Successful Real Estate with Kevin Ho.
My Clients Say, “Yes, Kevin Ho is My Agent,” Because He’s an Excellent…
- Recent SF Market Data
- Why San Francisco is Worth It
- In Contract! #1
- In Contract! #2
- In Contract! #3
- Closes for March 1-7, 2014
FROM THE SAN FRANCISCO ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS
+38.6% Single-Family Homes
$1,315,7100 Average Sales Price
$977,117 Average Sales Price
Change in Average Sales Price (12-month average, Jan 2013–Jan 2014)
You’ve heard it before San Francisco is a truly international city. And while you may hear of growth in Houston, for example, would you really want to live there? Would the rest of the world’s people want to visit? Instead, San Francisco stands out from most of the country (bar NYC) as being tops in real estate and the place to be for tourist and techie alike —18 of the top 25 tech companies are here for example. Our universities, proximity to emerging markets, financial base and diversity attracts the best and the brightest (although Berkeley and Stanford may have something to do with it). Plus our climate, while foggy sometimes, still beats cold vortexes and heat waves. And because land is scarce here … well, you get the picture. Read MORE.
In Contract: 19-21 Rosemont, Mission Dolores Large 2-Unit Residence
Fantastic, extra-wide home on a quiet street with so much potential.
List Price: $1.395M (PENDING)
Congratulations to my clients for getting this great property on a little-known street off of 14th Street called Rosemont Street — in fact it’s a cul de sac right in the middle of Dolores and Guerrero Streets in the uber hot Mission Dolores. We moved quickly after I presented it to various clients of mine for whom the property could be a match. This property is extra wide at 35-feet wide and zoned for 3-4 units from its current 2. My clients are developers who have a track record of fantastic projects. I can wait to see what they’ll do with the property which is pretty unique, charming, quiet and yet central List price is $1.395M and we snapped it up 2 hours after its first open house for more than the list price.
In Contract: 62 Danvers, Upper Market Large 2-level Tenancy in Common
3 Bedroom, 2 Bath, 2 Level, 2 Parking large home in a 2-unit fast track conversion building.
List Price: $1.159M (PENDING)
In Contract: 3024 Market Street, Upper Market Large Top-floor Condo
2 Bedroom, 2 Bath, Top-Floor, Garage2 Parking Recently Renovated, Top-line Finishes.
List Price: $1.089M (PENDING)
Closes from March 1–7, 2014
Over the past 7 days (March 1-March 7) there were only 118 properties that closed escrow, down from the 140 properties that closed escrow the week before. Here’s what closed this past week:
- 48 Single Family Homes (+2)
- 55 Condos/TICs/Coops (-22)
- 13 2-4 Unit buildings (+6)
- 1 5+ units (-3)
The least expensive single family home was a house at 1351 Quesada, which sold for 127% of its list price at $380,000 for a 3 bed/1 bath home (at $450/sqft, but it’s a fixer) in the Bayview area of the City, which sold after 30 days n the market. The most expensive was a large Pacific Heights home at 2746 Buchanan Street with 4 beds and 4.5 bathrooms selling for $5.495M after 23 days on the market
It’s About You & San Francisco Real Estate.
My name is Kevin Ho and I am Broker Associate at Vanguard Properties, I specialize in residential real estate in and around our fair city of San Francisco representing buyers, sellers, investors and builders. My client base and business continues to grow — success begets success. I am from Iowa City, Iowa originally, I am also an active attorney in California and have lived in San Francisco for 10 years.
I do real estate differently than most: I work hard, wisely and empathetically. I am adaptive, have a keen eye (and ear) and am media- and tech-savvy. I like to write and report, which enables me to provide my clients as much commentary as possible. I’m unaffraid to ask questions and tell you what I think. Indeed, I’ve been an invited commentator/expert on Curbed SF, have been quoted in the New York Times for innovative real estate marketing, and interviewed a number of times on local television news talking about real estate. Clients benefit from having a lawyer, realtor, mediator and reporter working for them. I am a top producer at Vanguard Properties, the locally owned and operated boutique brokerage that ranks among the best in San Francisco. I spent a lot of time in school and have the experiences to match.
- Law degree, U.C. Berkeley (Boalt Hall) ’04
- Master’s in Diplomacy & Int’l Studies, University of London (SOAS) ’01
- BA, East Asian Studies, WashU ’00 (Junior Year Abroad, New College, Oxford University)
- Worked as a reporter, lawyer, mediator and legal clerk
- Bay Area resident, 13 years, born & raised, Iowa City, Iowa
- English, Cantonese, Mandarin, German, HTML
- Cook, bike and play with Raffi (a former Guide Dogs for the Blind trainee) in my free time
My clients are both buyers and sellers, old and young, new to the market and seasoned from all walks of life. From ladies who lunch, builders who build and entrepreneurs who — well — start-up. I represent individuals, investors and developers. For me, real estate is a perfect career because I get to help people, shape our community and be involved. Plus it means variety and fun — never a dull moment.
- In 2012, I tripled my real estate business here in San Francisco — going from $2.8M worth of transactions to about $10M.
- In 2013, I closed about $20M in business and 2014 is already starting off strongly. I’ve gotten to the point in my career where clients are firing their agents to work with me and I am starting to develop a more robust team to support.
- On average, I have an active pool of 15-20 clients looking to buy or sell property from the $500,000 range to $4M price points with a ratio of 70% buyers and 30% sellers.
- I have an average of 3-4 escrows open at a time which means my days are busy but only just so; my schedule also allows me to focus on my clients, handle last-minute issues, and to meet new clients.
- I am backed by one the City’s most experienced and cooperative brokerages that expanded from 2 offices to more than 5 in 2013 alone.
My background and personality lend themselves to real estate naturally. I love what I do and I don’t think of it as work at all. It beats being a full-time lawyer hands down, but I value being a lawyer at the same time as it gives me an edge in that I can interpret documents for my clients allowing me to speak with confidence, knowledge and authority.
Because I am curious, enterprising I am always listening and learning. This is how I can bring my clients exclusive opportunities that others cannot.
I use technology effectively in my practice using an iPhone, iPad, laptop, and mobile technology to streamline the entire process for my clients freeing me up to spend more time assisting my clients on what’s important. I work creatively and think broadly but also approach real estate under the premise this is important business — home buying is the most important decision people make and it’s something I love.
Take the next step and contact me today to get started.
Success! Satisfied Sellers
We asked Kevin Ho to help us and he did an amazing job of sealing the deal for us considering there were so many other people interested in the place. Kevin Ho is a sharp, smart, and savvy guy – we could not have been more pleased with Kevin. He clearly knows the legal end of real estate, but also brings a very personal, well-researched knowledge of the market to his clients. We highly recommend Kevin Ho. He is an amazing realtor and we are lucky we found him.
— Drs. Sarah & Greg T.
Formerly of UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital, currently: CHOP Sellers (Mission Dolores)
Why Vanguard? Why Kevin Ho?
- Vanguard Properties consistently ranks as the number 1 listing & selling brokerage in SF’s Sunbelt
- Vanguard Properties is locally-owned and operated with years of experience in the area that attracts talent — we’ve added 5 new offices in 2013 alone!
- Vanguard Properties is at the forefront of new real estate development
- Kevin is social and always alert for opportunity & responsive. He’s also a Vanguard Top Producer.
- Kevin’s tech-savviness gives his clients the edge
- Kevin is involved & current with the MLS, RBA & AIA and appears in media and on TV
- More Knowledge, More Service — With Kevin on your side you get the best agent+, lawyer, negotiator, reporter & mediator combination who advocates your goals and wins for you.
At Vanguard Properties we are committed to understanding your individual needs. We promise to provide you with the kind of quality service that will exceed your expectations. Quality is never an accident; it is always the result of sincere effort, intelligent direction and skilled execution. Learn more HERE.
As first-time homebuyers, we were very new to the whole process of purchasing a home in San Francisco and felt extremely anxious. We wanted our agent to be available to answer our every question, reassure us about every concern and walk us through every step of a home buying process. Kevin did just that!
Additionally, we were on a very tight deadline and had only two months to locate the property and close it, which also added a lot of pressure on Kevin and us. Kevin walked us through every step and he explained every detail of making a winning an offer in a multi-bid world of San Francisco’s real estate market.
Kevin connected us to highly qualified team of lenders, real estate attorneys and appraisers. Kevin responded to all our emails, texts and phone calls in a timely manner. Furthermore, there is no question you cannot ask Kevin. Kevin can find a solution to the most difficult situation and resolve it smoothly and fast. Additionally, besides being a real estate broker, Kevin is an attorney at law, and his law expertise helped tremendously with navigating SF’s real estate market.
We closed on the house within two months and we cannot be happier with our new home. We became good friends with Kevin and we still ask for his advice and expertise. When we are ready to purchase the next property, we will only work with Kevin — and so should you.
I love the style of your newsletter! It is so informative and fun! I love to see what is happening in my neighborhood too.
We read it every week. It’s the best newsletter I’ve ever seen.
Kevin was a superb real estate agent, and did a great job helping us buy our first home! Kevin is funny and personable, and knows how to get the job done.
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Last Week in Real Estate
Last week in real estate.
Spotted: A great opportunity in the Lower Haight, a new building on the 200 block of Sanchez and a sink.
In the Know with Kevin Ho, March 8-9, 2014 Ed., No. 10
Too Few Homes, Too Much Demand.
This weekend sees more listings and open houses but demand continues to grow in a market with scarce inventory people want to lock down before mortgage rates rise.
In this issue: Stories of the Week, Advances for properties coming to market, Open House picks of the weekend, new and market data showing on recent trends and what we can expect in San Francisco including the new Mint Plaza timeless conversions and information about the Onyx in the Potrero area.
Vanguard Properties is continuing a steady course of growth and announced this week the addition of two Marin County locations in Greenbrae and Corte Madera. We’re getting bigger!
And more locally, Vanguard will be listing about 20 newly prepared historic-conversion loft units at Mint Plaza next to, well, the Mint. The sales office is under construction and when open it will have a complimentary bar. Prices for the homes at 10 Mint Plaza and 2 Mint Plaza will range from $500,000 up to $4.5 million.
On the Onyx: The anticipated development at De Haro and 16th Street in Potrero Hill, the Onyx, is about to open its first building this month according to teaser emails we’ve received. The 2-bedroom units will range between 1200-1300 square feet and will range in price from $1.2-$1.6M. With the first release will include the 04, 06 & 07 stacks — all floor plans can be seen at their website at Onyxsf.com. Parking and storage will be included in the price of each home; the buyer has the option of purchasing the home without parking. The largest unit in the building is 405 which is 1685 square feet. That home will have 2 bedrooms plus den and 3 full bath and is located in the back by the courtyard. But the developer will not be releasing this unit right away due to construction of his second building, Onyx on Carolina. Estimates are that he will release the courtyard units later this year all once that building has been framed. The property will have their first showings Saturday-Sunday March 15-16 from 12:00-5:00 for folks on the registration list — please indicate you’re working with me, Kevin Ho if you go during this time or register. Units will then go onto the MLS on March 17 and the development will be open to the public after that. Offer packages should be available by March 20 with their first offer date being set tenattively for March 25.
Later this year the new condos across the street from our office on Mission Street, named VidaSF, Will be ready for sale. Vanguard has been given friends and family early access. More details to come as they develop.
General trends: mortgage rates starting up — at 4.3% on average rates are still at historic lows. But once they come up to an average of 6 to 8% – when economy is normal – expect your buying power to be greatly reduced.
San Francisco policymakers are working toward improving pedestrian safety and hundreds of intersections across the city. Although the $240 million initiative has a fraction of its funding so far, expect more pedestrian friendly intersections and next few years.
Open Houses This Weekend
There are 119 new listings up for this weekend. The first time this year that we have broken the 100 new listings barrier for a given week. And while there are 345 open houses in SF this weekend, we are not seeing the activity that we need to be see in order for the market to be healthy.
There are good number of houses in theSunset and Parkside on the market this weekend. Over in Noe Valley you can see a perfect balance of an upgraded home that still maintains its character (plus the importance of staging) at 1525 Noe Street. The multi-level house is listed for $1.795M with offers due this coming week. And for the same price but a few blocks up at 667 28thStreet you can see what the full possibilities for a home that is more typical of the Sunset District can be if it got the Noe Valley treatment. A few homes in Bernal Heights, 142 Elsie, 6 Rosseau and 3261 Harrisonlook interesting to me as well.
As for condos, one of the best surprises I’ve seen is at 555 Bartlett, number 207, while just under 1100 sqft, this 3 Bed, 2 Bath 2011-built condo has outdoor space, a master suite and nice finishes and the location to match. Financing may be more complicated though. A trio of very nice condos at 1026 Sanchez, 1496 Sanchez and 1026 Church Street are very nice indeed. There are also some chic loft-style condos on the market at Moss, Dow, 2nd Street and 18th Street closer to Potrero and in the SOMA area.
There are a few multi-units that look interesting too. Listings that are open this weekend worth a think are at 1529 Oak, 355 Valley, 1779 15th St and 1152 Treat among others.
And there is a development opportunity prime for owner-occupier or ambitious developer at 4660 18th St. that is just a few houses up from where I live. The completely vacant two-unit building has been owned by the same family for years. On the property has no garage, it has a characteristic Edwardian façade, presidential neighbors who have expanded upwards, and the price tag of $1.25 million to boot. Renovations could be costly – $250,000 to add a garage for example plus anything else you’d want to do, don’t work to be quite rewarding. What’s the potential here: Just last summer, the garden level condominium I sold at 4658 18 street sold for more than $1.5 million and another similar property across the street sold for a touch more.
San Francisco is Worth the Price
You’ve heard it before San Francisco is a truly international city. And while you may hear of growth in Houston, for example, would you really want to live there? Would the rest of the world’s people want to visit? Instead, San Francisco stands out from most of the country (bar NYC) as being tops in real estate and the place to be for tourist and techie alike —18 of the top 25 tech companies are here for example. Our universities, proximity to emerging markets, financial base and diversity attracts the best and the brightest (although Berkeley and Stanford may have something to do with it). Plus our climate, while foggy sometimes, still beats cold vortexes and heat waves. And because land is scarce here … well, you get the picture.
Did I mention there’s wine here too?
Sometimes you are lucky enough to connect with people who have the wherewithal and resources to make your dreams come true, and working with Kevin has been nothing but delightful destiny from the day we fatefully met at one of his open homes. With Kevin’s real estate and legal expertise combined with his infectious enthusiasm and strong client dedication, one couldn’t ask for better representation.
— Marie S.
Cloud Computing/Internet Startup QC/QA
Residential Buyer (Duboce Triangle/Lower Haight)
This is my second time buying a home, and the experience this time around with Kevin as my agent was *night and day* compared to my first agent. I wouldn’t have changed anything Kevin helped me accomplish in the process.
The Latest Development News from the Realtors
San Francisco Real Estate Trends since 2012
Starting in February 2012, the market changed in SF. Instead of a shortage of serious buyers, the tables turned toward a shortage of good homes that lasted long enough for people to see without other buyers making preemptive offers. So, prices have gone up —and up but are expected to hold steady for 2014 as interest rates scoot up and as the number of REO and short sales continue to shrink.
And while the strength in prices remains, agents are now generally pricing homes more accurately. But many are still using an offer-date system whereby the listing price may have little to do with the ultimate selling price because competitive bidding is encouraged. Balanced against that is that home borrowing, while still strenuous, is affordable because interest rates remain at historic lows but for how much longer?
In terms of pricing and how properties are presented, 2012 and 2013 has shown there’s no one right way to do things. Instead ascertaining pricing philosophy (some agents grossly under- or mis-price) comes down to a per agent, per property basis, which is leading too a lot of “wait and watch.” Remember good things may not come to those who wait but do to the early birds. There is a lot of cash on the market with people having to spend tax-deferred 1031 exchange monies from sales that would otherwise be subject to the 37% capital gains combined tax rate.
And if you think prices will go down, think about all the other folks who lost out in competitive bidding — they’re not going anywhere too. And with interest rates going up, buyers are rushing to lock rates in, even if it means making concessions like giving sellers longer rent-back periods. Another trend to watch is the city’s housing crunch, which will be felt evermore in 2014 with more drama, more emotions, and now, promised tinkering with rent control and eviction control laws.
Remember, I’m here to help you, your family and friends succeed.
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