In early 2014 I got blown out of the water by an all cash buyer for one sweet property in the Sunset District. The asking price was $1.2 million, the median home price in San Francisco, and I offered $1.38 million. Given the agent representing me was the son of the listing agent (!), he gave me the inside scoop that $1.38 million wouldn’t cut it because the pole position offer was at $1.8 million! Although part of me thought he was just talking bullshit, I raised my offer to $1.5 million, hoping that the first place offer would drop out.
At the time, I thought to myself, what kind of crazy idiot would offer 50% over asking on a block where the next highest priced home was $1.4 million max? It turns out that his $1.8 million offer went through. Not only that, he proceeded to gut the house and spend another $250,000+ remodeling!
For a month I was feeling a little melancholy because I envisioned myself spending the next 5-10 years of my life in the home. You start thinking about what type of art you’ll put up on the walls, and which room is for whom. The house was in great condition as is. Buying property can get pretty emotional.
Still getting over my loss, I stumbled across another sweet property in Golden Gate Heights, a nicer neighborhood with more expansive ocean views. The asking price was $1.35 million for this 3 bedroom, 3 bathroom, 2,300 sqft house. It had two great decks, but the views were partially blocked by a massive pine tree out back.
The property was swarming with perspective buyers when I visited. Figuring I had no chance in hell to win, I didn’t even bother putting in an offer this time. I guessed it would easily go for at least $1.7 million if the other house went for $1.8 million. And I hadn’t sold enough books to have $1.7 million lying around.
The house went into contract in two weeks, and after a month of waiting, I found out the selling price was only $1.48 million! Holy crap! It went for $220,000 under what I thought it would sell for. Now I was even more dejected.