sketches

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!

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Dodgy Duke

Dodge Camper.jpgThis campervan will guzzle gas, but it’s well worth the investment when you consider the benefits of having a home without a zip code. You’ll never mow another lawn again! The body graphics scream retro taste, while the steel wheels and basic white paint suggest rugged adventurer. Depending on mileage, tire condition and whether it’ll pass a smog test, this tenement on wheels is probably worth 7k to a discriminating buyer with impeccable parallel parking skills.

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.

Bernal Ben

Bernal Ben.jpgBen hasn’t been gentrified yet—even as the Design Within Reach crowd ambushes his fellow, wood-framed neighbors. His eaves are dirty, his first floor siding tagged by teenagers and his porch smells of urine. Although never divided into apartments, this two story Bernal Heights home hasn’t had the maintenance it deserved over the years. Considering his square footage and proximity to “authentic” Mexican food, I’d imagine the starting bid for Ben would be at least two million. And if one of Zuckerberg’s buddies is in the bidding war, the foggy San Francisco sky is the limit.

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.

San Francisco Steve

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A four-unit beauty nestled in San Francisco’s desirable Bernal Heights neighborhood, each bay window alone has a market value of $800K. Each garage space is worth an additional $500K. The small plants are yours for free. My estimated purchase price in this insane market is so high I lost track of the zeros. However, my rent estimate for each apartment is $5,250 a month—with an additional $550 per month for a garage space.