COVID-19: San Francisco Condo Market Heats Up After Pandemic Tumble

SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) — The real estate selling season is off to a hot start this year and the San Francisco condo market has significantly strengthened since the pandemic doldrums of last the summer.

Despite the lackluster condo market last year, the Four Seasons Private Residences at 706 Mission is home to the two highest closings for luxury high rise residences in 2020.

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KPIX 5 got an exclusive preview at the first luxury condo set to officially open in San Francisco during the pandemic.

The ultra post, ultra luxury project has been in the works for 12 years. It fills the last remaining buildable space in the Yerba Buena neighborhood.

NBA star Stephen Curry also reportedly purchased a condo in one of its two towers.

“It was pretty dead last year, there was not a lot of movement during COVID of anybody wanting to see anything with an elevator, a lobby, or shared amenities,” said Sotheby’s International Realty broker Gregg Lynn.

Lynn says things started to shift last November.

“When the Presidential election became settled, and Pfizer came out with an announcement that they were going to begin vaccine within the next months, things started to change in San Francisco condominiums,” said Lynn. “We’ve had a busier ten weeks since then, than we did in all of 2020.”

KPIX 5 toured a 3-bedroom, 3,590 square foot unit on the 37th floor, available for $11,290,000.

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Amenities include a game room, and bar and lounge. The grand penthouse is priced at $49 million – making it the most expensive condo listing in San Francisco.

“I like the neighborhood I’ve been here for 5, 6 years, so I certainly like it,” said Grace Lin, who lives in the area. “You obviously have the MOMA, you have a lot of good restaurants.”

Jon Banks lives a block away from the development.

“I’ve seen the activity increase in the area over the past month, activities increased – vehicle traffic, foot traffic,” he said.

Buyer interest is also up.

February’s San Francisco condo sales were up about 48% from last year. And year-over-year, the median condo sales price was down 8%, according to Compass research data. The rollout of vaccines may continue to drive sales up further.

“We have never been busier working with people trying to help them find homes. So yes, there’s an exodus but there’s still a very strong number of people moving here and relocating within here,” said Lynn.

Interest rates hit record lows at the start of the year, which also helped fuel the market.

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“If you are a buyer committed to finding the best space within San Francisco, you’re going to consider looking for a luxury condominium than right now,” said Lynn. “You’re either going to find the best value, or the best unit with the least amount of competition.”

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