April 23, 2009

Low maintenance back yards in San Francisco

2307 45th Ave, San Francisco, CA 94116 | MLS# 353083
2307 45th Ave San Francisco, CA 94116
Price: $550,000

Beds: 2
Baths: 1
Sq. Ft.: 1,015
$/Sq. Ft.: $542
Lot Size: –
Property Type: Junior, Single-Family Home
Year Built: 1940
Region: San Francisco District 2 (Central West)
Area: Outer Parkside
County: San Francisco
MLS#: 353083
Source: San Francisco MLS
Status: Active
On Redfin: 45 days
Charming & cozy home with remodeled kitchen a few short blocks from the beach! One good sized bedroom plus dining room converted to use as a 2nd bedroom on main floor (no closet). Bonus rooms down not warranted, low maintenance back yard. 1 car garage. Tenant occupied (Fridge & some light fixtures belong to tenant). REO

Let’s face it. Green is the new black which is the new gold. Or something like that. Everyone is trying to leave less of a carbon foot print, especially in San Francisco which is the nation’s least wasteful city.

That’s why Burbed reader Geoff brought this house to my attention. Let’s take a look at this low maintenance back yard:


Oops, sorry! No that’s the new eeBedroom (exercise entertainment bedroom) that’s all the rage right now.

Here’s the photo:


Now seriously. Could you possibly have a back yard that requires less maintenance than that? Talk about drought resistant!

Comments (38) -- Posted by: burbed @ 5:53 am

38 Responses to “Low maintenance back yards in San Francisco”

  1. nomadic Says:

    Bonus: it’s a tenant-occupied REO. Buy it and you get to toss a bitter renter into the street!

    BTW, WTF is the guy doing on the floor in the 3rd pic? Playing 52 card pickup?

    Also love the property type – JUNIOR SFH.

  2. UnrealAlex Says:

    As always, it’d be a great place with a zero less on the price. You can grow your fresh greens in that “yard” in pots or planters, so while tiny it’s not useless. At a price around $50k, you can get one of the few remaining types of jobs, washing dishes, washing cars, hustling handicrafts from “found” objects on the Wharf, etc and make it. Since having a car is idiocy in the BA, I’ll even go so far as to say, you could have 3 wage earners in there, with the garage converted to living space, and $50k each means this could cost $150k.

    This is why RE still has so far to fall.

  3. A. Lewis Says:

    I like how he warns that the angry renter will be taking his fridge and light fixtures with him.

    It shows you how much care the previous owner had that he wouldn’t provide his renter either one and the person bought them for themselves.

    The last 12 months my landlord has paid for:

    New window screens.
    New section of fence (and agreed to move the fence line and put in new posts to increase back yard vs. front yard).
    New garage door (replace old manual with new automatic roll-up with keyless entry – this is the big ticket item!!)
    Replace hose bib and some kind of large valve on water main.
    All materials for the gardening/landscaping I do (I like to do gardening, so they get this from me for free – but for me, it’s great when someone else pays for the soil, bricks, edging, etc. And I and my kids are the ones enjoying the yard every day.)
    New shower head/tub fixtures to get up to code (something about a scalding-prevention feature).
    New cat doors installed so my furry friends can come and go as they like (with those cool magnetic collar thingies so the raccoons can’t follow them).
    New interior mini-blinds in 4 rooms when the old shades started to disintegrate.
    Fix leaky pipe in laundry room.
    Fix bad outlet in Kitchen.
    Have gutters and drains cleaned.
    Repair a downspout.
    Pay for Critter Control to come and trap the moles digging up the backlawn – it took a while, but I’m thrilled to report they finally caught two yesterday and I can start planting more grass without worrying it’ll be pushed up from below!
    Replace fireplace flue which wasn’t shutting properly in high wind.
    They pay for the garbage service, too.
    New path-stones put in on side of house to walk on when it’s muddy.
    Tree trimming.
    Plumber for toilet clog.

    I’m just saying – as a renter, it’s nice to get to call someone else when this stuff breaks.

  4. CB Says:

    A. Lewis, your landlord is atypically attentive. You must know that.

    When I rented, the only time I received a level of service that hovered slightly above disrespectful was when I lived in one of those pseudo-upscale apartment megaplexes. And I am certain any effort was in preservation of their asset, not my well being.

  5. A. Lewis Says:

    #4 – I agree. That’s why I live where I do – I found a good rental arrangement. As a participant in the market, you can use your dollars to encourage the other market participants who behave the way you like.

    When supply is high, the renter has great advantages. To all renters: if your landlord isn’t treating you right – ask them to start today. Or move to a better place. Deals like mine can certainly be had.

    To all landlords: if you’re not treating your renters well, start today. You are at risk of losing good tenants who can find a better deal elsewhere.

  6. A. Lewis Says:

    Be sure not to miss the best summary and analysis of National Housing data available on the web:



  7. nomadic Says:

    New cat doors installed

    know you HAVE to be trolling!

    hehe – and thanks, now maybe RE will stop with his landlord fantasy! Less fun for us, but you definitely saved some poor renter from becoming bitter.

  8. A. Lewis Says:

    No, I’m serious about the cat doors!

    As a cat owner with indoor/outdoor cats, it’s a HUGE benefit to have cat doors. Obviously, you HAVE to respond to your cat’s bathroom needs, or you get a mess. We can’t stand having a litter box anywhere in the main house – so we have one in the garage (catdoor 1), and they can use it whenever they want.

    Since they can go outdoors (catdoor 2), they usually do their business outside, which means we rarely have to change the litter box.

    Hopefully, they’re doing their business on the lawn of someone I don’t like – but I haven’t heard any complaints, so I’m happy!

  9. nomadic Says:

    You have a nice landlord – I’m not sure I’d go to the trouble for my own furry friends (assuming my allergies still allowed them).

    I doubt your kitties are pooping on the neighbors lawns though. They prefer to bury it, so maybe it’ll be found if someone clears some mulch to plant flowers. πŸ˜‰

  10. A. Lewis Says:

    I’ve had crappy landlords in the past – when I was a student or grad student living in cheap housing. I have plenty of renter horror-stories to share.

    But since I’ve started renting SFH in the Bay Area, I’ve put an emphasis on the quality of the landlord, as well as the property, and it’s worked out pretty well.

    I put up the laundry list of things to look impressive, but I admit some of them took a long time and multiple requests to get – the garage door is only now being installed, but it’s been in bad shape for more than a year. I don’t mean to be disingenuous – but I do like the idea of inspiring other renters to get what they deserve out of the situation – my rent money is worth something!

  11. CB Says:

    Cats will poop on your lawn then try to bury it.

    The result after the uprooted grass dries up is something that looks like italian sausage and vermicelli.

  12. burbed Says:

    [throws up a little]

  13. DreamT Says:

    A. isn’t it a fire hazard to cut a cat door through the garage door? We were told as much in any case.

  14. DreamT Says:

    [grumbles and cleans up behind burbed]

  15. nomadic Says:

    [simultaneously killing the thread]


  16. anon Says:

    It depends – is the hole being cut into the large garage door that permits the car enter or and exit, or is it the man door that permits people to enter and exit.

    Creating a hole in the man door is not ok, putting one in the car door is ok.

    At least, that’s my understanding.

  17. BobbyS Says:

    What does a non-warranted room mean?

  18. BobbyS Says:

    Who ever buys this fogged in house can build two rooms in the “backyard” and rent each room for $800 a month.

  19. austindweller Says:


    Long time no see. How are you ? Has CA real estate corrected itself, yet ? Are madhouse and bob still here ? And what about RealEstater ? I thought of cheking him out as to what he has to say. Has he finally accepted the defeat now that his RE predictions in 2008 have been decisively proven wrong by the market ? Ha ha ha. RealEstater, a real fool.

  20. nomadic Says:

    non-warranted = built without permits (but the owners want be coy, er, the bank doesn’t want to take responsibility for the room’s existence and is saying “permits unknown” instead)

  21. anon Says:

    Long time no see. How are you ?

    Just fine, thank you.

    Has CA real estate corrected itself, yet ?

    Not quite.

    Are madhouse and bob still here ? And what about RealEstater ?
    yes, yes and yes.

    I thought of cheking him out as to what he has to say. Has he finally accepted the defeat now that his RE predictions in 2008 have been decisively proven wrong by the market ?


    Ha ha ha. RealEstater, a real fool.


    Stop by sometime. πŸ˜›

  22. nomadic Says:

    Has he finally accepted the defeat now that his RE predictions in 2008 have been decisively proven wrong by the market ?

    Allow me to elaborate, anon.

    An emphatic “hell no” and now that you asked, there’s no better time to buy than now! The smart money is in PA.


  23. anon Says:

    yeah… as i recall some stupid bullshit about how pa only appreciates exponentially and any deviation from exponential growth is a sign of weakness and therefore buy now…

  24. anon Says:

    thread killer winner: anon

  25. nomadic Says:

    You just summed it up so well, nothing more needed to be said.

  26. DreamT Says:

    just stopping by to beat a dead thread

  27. anon Says:

    said dead thread, eh?

    well i guess its time to go to bed.

  28. DreamT Says:

    it can’t be dead, it’s still moving!!!!

  29. nomadic Says:

    I’m not dead yet! (But I should be.)

    Can you tell I don’t have to go to work tomorrow?

  30. Real Estater Says:

    >>Has he finally accepted the defeat now that his RE predictions in 2008 have been decisively proven wrong by the market ?

    This kind of laughable comment is clearly written by someone who does not live in the Real Bay Area!

  31. A. Lewis Says:

    Gosh, my cat door IS in the person door (not the big door). Now I’m worried it’s a fire hazard – is that b/c the door itself is considered a firewall, so making a hole in it reduces it’s firewall capabilities?

    Well THAT’S disappointing. I guess the city inspector just missed it while he was looking at other stuff – he was quite a stickler about some items.

    For example – the overhead kitchen light was this cheap fluorescent ring in a white plastic diffuser, that I didn’t like. I got a different cheap fixture from home depot – which had an Edison-type (screw-in) lamp base, and I put in a soft-white compact fluorescent bulb, and the diffuser was frosted glass instead of plastic. I thought it was a little nicer.

    The inspector said Edison-based screw-in bulbs are verboten. It MUST be pin-based. I switched it back and he signed off for the prop. mgmt. company on his next visit. This sucks! There are very few bulb choices I found for pin-based lamp fixtures.

    I think it’s supposed to be an energy-saving code – but I was able to put in a very low wattage compact fluorescent bulb in the screw-in base, so I was actually SAVING 2 watts vs. the one they had.

    He wouldn’t even explain the code, though – he just said ‘it must be pin-based’ and moved on.

    New-home-building must be fun with all these regulations to live by!

    Is this some crappy local city code? Are you really restricted to pin-based fluorescent lighting for ALL your overhead stuff? You can’t have any incandescent or halogen or ‘other’ lights anymore and be up to code?

    Please tell me I’m mistaken…

  32. nomadic Says:

    A, it’s called Title 24 – it’s statewide in CA:

    I haven’t checked out the kitchen requirements in detail but I do know that the primary light source must be “high efficiency” which basically means fluorescent. They don’t allow screw in bulbs because you could swap out the bulb after the inspector leaves. Just the fact that a regular bulb can go in there is a problem.

    In bathrooms they give you a little more leeway – it’s fluorescent lighting OR you can use a special switch that turns on manually but will shut off automatically after a maximum of 15 minutes; it has a motion sensor so it won’t turn off if someone is in there (but it doesn’t see through glass shower walls, so careful how long you stay in there).

    The lighting regulations vary by room, and yes, it’s a royal PITA.

  33. anon Says:

    “This kind of laughable comment is clearly written by someone who does not live in the Real Bay Area!”

    This kind of laughable comment is clearly written by someone who does not have the capacity to think!

  34. rick Says:

    I always pity those people living in average SF shacks, they could just live in the same kind of dumpster in any other run-down town and pay 1/3 the price.

  35. Real Estater Says:

    anon says,
    >>This kind of laughable comment is clearly written by someone who does not have the capacity to think!

    In that case, you must be that person, because you answered as follows:

    >>Has CA real estate corrected itself, yet ?

    Not quite.

  36. anon Says:

    Let’s recap:

    You said this comment was laughable:

    >>Has he finally accepted the defeat now that his RE predictions in 2008 have been decisively proven wrong by the market ?

    Your predictions were for business as it had been. I remember you shitting some ‘clear for takeoff language.’

  37. anon Says:

    Let’s delve a little more.

    I don’t know if this is true, but Mr. Mortgage says: “β€œDefaults on original loan amounts over $750k are surging with total counts higher than total sales in this segment. Supply from foreclosure is about to hit hard in the mid-to-upper end housing market. And remember, foreclosure supply is only one form and account for only about 35% of total supply.””

    Think about that. Defaults on 750k+ loans are going UP. Then think about how long it takes to process a default and subsequent foreclosure. Finally, understand why it is taking so long and why it will occur for an extended period.

  38. nomadic Says:

    you’re asking him to think?

    Get ahold of yourself man.

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