real estate commentary

Gingerbread Gina

Gina Gingerbread.jpgYou’ve heard of million-dollar views? Good. In this case, you’d better bring two. Perched between the Oakland Hills and the family-friendly excitement of Oakland’s Grand Ave, this Victorian charmer has everything you’ve been looking for—as long as you can pack it into 1100 square feet. This one won’t last long. Call your careless local lender today!

Boxy Bernal Brothers

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Precariously perched near the peak of Bernal Hill, these simple structures have been in the neighborhood long enough to see at least one San Francisco bubble burst. While the bars on the window tell you things haven’t alway been Instagramable vistas and six-dollar lattes, both homes have been updated to match the Ikea decor that’s sure to fill them. This is your once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to own an entire corner of the most squirrely city in America. Bidding starts at five million.

Spanish Tile Tony

Spanish Sal.jpgWith an oversized one-car garage, plenty of mature trees and a gracefully curved stairway that your movers are gonna hate, this Grand Lake District beauty would probably set you back about a million or more. Like the festive feel? The current owners will throw in the Christmas lights for free.

Piedmont Pete

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Pete has been lovingly maintained by his upper-middle class family for decades. With subtle castle-like curb appeal and an aesthetically appealing arrangement of windows, rooflines and overhangs, he stands out among his neighbors. While there may be shag carpeting lurking within his plaster walls and perhaps an olive green electric stovetop in his kitchen, most of the leftovers from the 1968 remodel can be quickly erased by an ambitious new owner and a trusty contractor. Bidding starts at 1.25 million. Depending on the fiscal success of your start up, you may want to go ahead and get comfortable with the things you don’t like—there’s a good chance you’ll be living with them for a while.

Rustic Roger

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A fixer-upper in any other part of the world, this hillside retreat comes with a secure entrance, two-car garage and enough dry rot to keep your preferred San Francisco contractor busy for at least a year.* Spend your evening watching the fog roll over Twin Peaks and your mornings trying to figure out how to get another home improvement loan. My estimated pre-bidding-war starting price is $1.8 million. Rent the whole house for $6250—with a 13-thousand dollar deposit to cover any damage. Small cats considered.

* I have no idea if this house has any dry rot issues.