Are Berkeley multi-family properties behaving as their heavily-in-demand San Francisco brethren? Despite news that Berkeley's rents are up, largely pushed by an influx of people who gave up trying to rent in San Francisco adding to the already sizable pool of people who always planned to rent in Berkeley, the activity on multi-family properties seems at this point to be simmering-- heating up but not boiling as it is in SF. Of seven multi-unit properties that sold within the last month, only one broke the $1,000,000 mark. Of course, these buildings are mostly duplexes, while the San Francisco examples are most often 3 or 4-units so the comparison, price-wise, isn't as accurate as it would be if Berkeley has sold larger scale buildings. However, we can look at how quickly they sold, and for how much over asking, to assess the relative heat in this East Bay market .
1608 Scenic Ave listed 3/5 for $1,050,000 and sold quickly on 4/23 but only modestly above asking at $1,125,000 (keeping in mind or basis for comparison is SF's $400, $500, $600K over asking sales). This despite being a charming duplex close to UCB--in other words, a landlord's dream.
Multi-units don't abound here and this one, 938 Santa Barbara Rd, didn't wait long for a buyer. It hit the market on 1/11 at $799,000, and sold on 2/28 for $825,000. Again, the over-asking isn't so extreme, but the quickness of the sale is worth noting. Normally, a large scale transaction such as this one might be expected to take a few months to find a buyer and close. This is not the case with this example, or any of the examples in Berkeley we're analyzing today.
Casting our net wider for more data, we looked at this triplex in Kensington, an enclave between North Berkeley and El Cerrito, with one major selling point to prospective landlords: it has no rent control. 57 Edgecroft Rd listed for $898,000 on 1/23 of this year and sold shorty after, on 2/27 for $948,000 according to public record.
Overall, Berkeley multi-units do not seem to be enjoying quite the insane popularity of their San Francisco peers; however, the speed with which they are being purchased (and at over asking, not under) indicates investors are aware of the opportunities such properties offer. Will this simmering on the market reach boiling point in coming months? We'll check back.
· Berkeley Rents Heading Higher [Curbed SF]
· All Monthly Analysis Coverage [Curbed SF]
·Your Monthly Analysis: Median Prices Trends for San Francisco Multi-Family Homes [CurbedSF]