Bernal Heights Real Estate Goes From “Hot” to “White Hot”



And now, more evidence of what you already knew: Bernal Heights real estate is hot. Average sales prices here have topped $1 million, and according to realtor dpaul Brown, Bernal Heights (along with the Inner Mission, Noe Valley/Castro, South Beach, and Hayes Valley) is not merely hot — it’s actually white hot:

Virtually every area of San Francisco and the Bay Area has been experiencing dramatic home-value appreciation in the past 12 to 18 months. Some that were hard hit by distressed property sales, which experienced the largest price declines, have surged in price but remain 20% – 30% below previous peak values reached in 2006 – 2008. As a state, California is still about 25% below its 2007 pre-crash median home price. And in San Francisco itself, many if not most neighborhoods now appear to have re-attained or moved slightly beyond previous high points.

But in this past quarter, a handful of neighborhoods and districts in the city have leapt well beyond the highest average home values achieved in the past. Interestingly, comparing these white-hot areas with one another, there are often huge differences in property type, era and style of construction, and neighborhood culture or ambiance. But all of them have been very affected by affluent – often newly affluent – high-tech professionals of one age group and level of affluence or another. Naturally, these neighborhoods are highly desired by other buyers too – often professionals in finance, bio-tech, medicine and law – but the high-tech-buyer dynamic has generally super-charged these markets in particular.

The article goes on to add that Bernal appeals to people who want “family-friendly neighborhood ambiance, but at a more affordable cost.” And freeways.

IMAGES: Photo, Library of Congress. Chart, via dpaul Brown. Hat tip: Neighbor Anita

8 thoughts on “Bernal Heights Real Estate Goes From “Hot” to “White Hot”

  1. I moved into Bernal in 1982, and bought the house I was renting in 1984. I am saddened by this boom. “affordable cost”??? for whom? No folks who are working/middle class—teachers, nurses, other public sector workers—can afford Bernal any more. The black families on my block are gone.
    The child care collective on Cortland (Little People’s workshop) long gone. Family friendly–yes, if you have the $.

    • I disagree about the affordability. It ain’t cheap but some middle class families are moving into the neighborhood. My wife and I are definitely middle class (have tax returns to prove it) and have bought into Bernal in the last few years. We also bought a house that needed a TON of work (and by work I don’t mean granite counter tops I mean foundation, electrical, heating, etc…). I’m not clear on how black families leaving your block suggest that a neighborhood is unaffordable.

      I’m sorry that you are “saddened by this boom.” Are you willing to donate some of the boom dollars to charity when you eventually sell? Perhaps it could go to help a working/middle class family move in….

      • we just bought a few months ago and we’re pretty middle class… bought a smaller house than we could have if we’d bought in the east bay and it needed some work for sure but we made it happen. and i’m with ed, if you’re so sad about the rising housing costs i sure hope you’ll sell at whatever you think houses should cost in bernal so that a working class family can move in.

  2. Welcome Tessa. Perhaps our families will run into one another in a middle class establishment in Bernal 🙂 It should be easy to spot one another b/c we are so few and far between!

  3. Pingback: Bernal Heights Real Estate Goes From “Hot” to “White Hot” | Selling Real Estate SF

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  5. Wow, pretty amazing how quickly the Bernal Heights area’s value is increasing year after year. My brother-in-law lives in Bernal Heights and I visit every year. Such a beautiful area, lots of families… I can definitely see the appeal of raising your kids in such a great area.

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