GREEN Homes for Sale-San Francisco

Tiburon Home – a Magnificent Natural Beauty

High atop a Tiburon hillside ridge, nestled across from Angel Island with a sweeping view of San Francisco and the East Bay is an architectural masterpiece of a home built in 1995.

Vanguard Properties presents this one-of-a-kind home of 4 Bedroom, 4.5 Baths with 2 car parking. Carved out of the hillside is an earthy enclave of natural limestone and granite, carefully orchestrated to blend seamlessly with the California landscape. Most charming is a path that leads around the perimiter of the property and around the house to view from each window where there is a real sense of nature and relaxation.


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GREEN Seminar Coming UP in San Francisco

Posted in Energy Saving Tips, Erika Gives Back, GREEN Beauty in San Francisco, GREEN Homes for Sale-San Francisco, GREEN Websites, Home Improvement, Local SF Real Estate News, Local Vendor Reccommendations, Press Releases, San Francisco Real Estate, Seminars, Sustainable Choices in the City, United States Green Building Council | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Should a Buyer be Pre-Approved for their loan before Searching for Property? Yes or No?

imagesHere in our San Francisco market, I urge all of my buyers to gain pre-approval for a loan before they begin their home search. Many people seem to think that pre-approval is like applying for your entire loan, but it is not.
Once you have chosen a direct lender, Bank, or Mortgage Broker, they will ask you to fill out a loan application and assist you in gathering the necessary documentation and verifications to complete what will eventually become your “loan Package”.
Once the loan professional has verified your income, assets and employment, they are able to estimate the type and amount of loan you will likely qualify for. This will assist you in knowing what your monthly payment, insurance, property taxes and interest will be and in turn, you will know the right price range to look in when shopping for your home!
Now that you have that pre-approval letter you are ready to search. This will give you a competitive advantage, as you will be able to submit offers immediately on what could be the “perfect” property for you with that valuable pre-approval letter. This letter lets the listing agent know that this buyer is already working toward their loan approval and has the right income and assets to qualify for that particular purchase. What do you think about loan pre-approval and working with an agent. Do you feel it is necessary?
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1st Time HomeBuyer – You may be able to use the tax credit for San Francisco Real Estate

Here’s the latest on the first time home buyers tax credit!!!

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Re-Charge It! Camping & Batteries – Lots of ‘Em

recylcled batteries

I went camping last weekend and I’m proud to say that all of our equipment that needed batteries, were either wind up flashlights or used rechargeable batteries.  We made the original investment and get a feel good vibe everytime we charge our batteries in ad

I am a Realtor representing buyers and Sellers of Real Estate in San Francisco and I make it my business to impart GREEN info to my clients on a regular basis.  Ask me about GREEN homes for sale, what you can do now to make GREEN improvements to your current sale OR when preparing your property for sale – ask me what Green features buyers are looking for before beginning your home repairs or improvements.
vance and have plenty of light at our campsite and are helping the environment at the same time.  Not to mention the resources we are saving when going it outside with the elements…that’s another story. Continue reading

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New Floors – Make them Bamboo Floors


Renewable flooring materials like Bamboo cost less than hardwood and look great.

Bamboo grows significantly faster than hard wood so it is sustainable. Some bamboos grow to over 60 feet in just 6 months.

Vertically oriented ‘carbonized’ 5/8 bamboo tongue and groove with pre-urethane top coat performs very well and looks terrific. Note that when comparing prices against hard wood, American oak is often cured longer and has less potential to buckle than cheaper imports that cost less than $5 / sq. ft. Bamboo costs about $3.50 / sq. ft. so the immediate savings on a 300 sq.ft. room (20′ x 15′ ) is about $450.

Consider bamboo for guest rooms, dens, home offices, or play rooms. You have many styles to choose from, but the vertical oriented system may wear better over time than the horizontal. The ‘carbonized’ finish is darker than the blonde finsh and it looks more like hardwood, and pre-finished boards with multiple coats of urethane will save on installation.

Also consider using bamboo instead of carpet. Installed carpet ranges from $1.25 to $2.50 per sq. ft. but you have to clean it and potentially replace it every 5 to 10 years depending on the wear.

The savings is immediate relative to wood, but the ROI Calculation is based on offsetting carpet at an average of $1.75 / sq. ft. for two 300 sq. ft. rooms with the need for a carpet replacement within 10 years.

The Bamboo ‘Grain’ is elegant and durable.

The tongue and groove boards come in easy to deliver and handle boxes.
Install it yourself or bring in the pros.
Bamboo looks great in transition with natural stone, carpet and oak.

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GREEN ENVY – The benefits of Green homes

Source: U.S. Green Building Council

More and more Amaericans are discovering the benefits of green homes. The advantages affect consuers’ health, wallet and the environment. For example:
~Toxin-free building materials help combat indoor air ollution, which can be worse than outdoor pollutiona and can pose serious health risks.
~The net cost of owning a greenhome is comparable to – or even cheaper than – owning a standard home.
~Month to month, people who live in green homes save money by consming less energy and less water than standard homes.
~The value of a green home is often higher than that of a comparable standard home, and the amrket demand for green homes continues to rise.
~Local, state, and federal governments are increasingly offering tax breaks and other incentives for building certified green homes or adding green features to an existing home.
!Green homes use 40% less energy than comparable standard homes.
~Efficient plumbing and bathing fixtures, drought-tolerant landscaping and water-conserving irrigation systems help green homes use less water than standard homes.
~Far fewer natural resources are used in the construction of a green home. Many green building materials have significant recyled content.

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Great Local San Francisco Real Estate Resource Website here

The Association’s web site for homeowners,, contains more than 130 articles on subjects important to owners. From “Adding a Room” to “Zoning Districts,” it’s all there, making the site the most robust resource guide for San Francisco homeowners on the web.
Want to know more about sidewalk repair? What to do about barking dogs? Confused about who’s responsible for repairing the fence between your backyard and your neighbor’s? Aren’t sure if you need a permit to remodel your bathroom? The answers to all these questions and many more can be found on the Association’s very informative and unique site.
Topics are separated into three easy-to-navigate sub-headings: Your House, Your Neighborhood and Your City.
In addition, the site contains a fourth, separate category—Your Government—which provides descriptions of legislative proposals and ballot measures affecting the interests of property owners at the local, State and federal levels. Sometimes accompanying these descriptions are letters supporting or opposing legislative proposals (as the case might be) that site visitors can send to selected legislators, with their name attached to the letters with a single mouse click. To view the political content, however, the visitor must click on the separate Your Government link. The site was set up this way so that REALTORS® would not feel uncomfortable about referring their clients to the site because the “political point-of-view” expressed may be different than that of site visitors and client alienation would occur.

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Cleanerrific and I mean it!

I called “Cleanerrific” on the reccommendation of one of my colleagues at Zephyr Real Estate . I was delighted to find that they are a subsidiary of The Jewish Family & Childrens Services and a provide training and employment for those that are learning to be self reliant. It is important for me to continually contribute to what I call “the full circle way”.
The JCFS trains and helps these people become valuable employees. I employ them. They clean your house after you’ve moved out or before you move in and everyone is happy, participating and giving back.
I spoke with their Director who told me they are 90% GREEN with their solvents and cleaning supplies…which is commendable and necessary. Cleanerrific is just that, a terrific organization providing much needed services and they have an important mission and message.

I am more than happy to pay it forward. In this case, I’m giving my client his house cleaning as a closing gift. His hardwood floors will be waxed and buffed and his new home sparkling.
“Imagine having a sparkling home or office, PLUS the good feeling of giving back to the community. You get both when you hire Cleanerific, Jewish Family and Children’s Services residential and commercial janitorial service.” And they are GREEN too!

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Catch the Green Wave

Catch the Green Wave

Just outside of the tiny town of Saybrook, Illinois is some of the “greenest” farmland to be found anywhere in the Midwest. This pic was snapped traveling down a lovely country blacktop last October.6a0105361dfb6d970c01156fa30707970bThese graceful towers are absolutely silent, but are generating power for thousands of residents in Illinois. That’s a good thing, because in the United States alone, buildings alone account for:

• 70% of electricity
• 39% of all energy use
• 39% of all (CO2) emissions
• 40% of raw materials use
• 30% of waste output
(136 million tons annually)
• 12% of potable water

Sustainable residences, commercial properties, developments, and communities are so important to all of us. If you are seeking a green home or building, there are real estate professionals who specialize in “green.”

The National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) Green Designation is the definition of green professionalism, excellence, and leadership for today’s real estate practitioners. This training program is specifically designed to address the educational needs of practitioners in residential, commercial, and property management markets. The program provides real estate professionals with the knowledge and awareness of green building principles applied in residences, commercial properties, developments, and communities so that they can list, market, and manage green properties as well as guide buyer-clients, in purchasing green homes and buildings.

The Green Designation enables real estate professionals to incorporate green principles into their practice and encourages the real estate professional to be an advocate in spreading the green philosophy and be a positive force for creating sustainable and energy efficient communities of homes and commercial buildings.

What does it really mean when it comes to being a homeowner or looking for that eco-friendly home?

A homeowner can do many things to go green in the home. For example, some tips regarding electricity according to Planet Green are:

· Audit yourself – determine how energy is used in your home, where it is lost, etc. Many utilities offer energy audits as a free service.

· Reduce your use – replace light bulbs with compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFLS);turn off lights and devices when not in use; eliminate electronics that sleep on a standby setting as they continue to pull electric even when turned off; line dry (when possible)

· Put your house on a diet – Houses consume a large amount of energy when heating and cooling. To cut down on costs, utilize natural ventilation instead of air conditioning when possible such as ceiling and whole-house fans. Keep shades drawn during the hottest period of the day in the summer. If you use electric for your water heater, purchase an insulated blanket to wrap around the water heater.

· Buy wise – After heating and cooling, appliances are the next biggest electricity users. When purchasing new appliances, look for the EnergyGuide label which shows consumption in terms of kWh per year. Additionally, look for the Energy Star rating.

When purchasing a green home, not only are you helping the environment, but you have the ability to take advantage of energy-efficient mortgages.

1. Energy-efficient homes and energy efficient mortgages – Check out “Financing Energy Efficiency: An EEM Handbook” by Randy Martin. The book discusses what energy efficient mortgages are (loans with relaxed credit standards and favorable interest rates for houses meeting prescribed energy standards) and FHA, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac mortgage requirements.

2. Residential Energy Services Network RESNET is one of the principal groups of green housing-minded practitioners, lenders, builders, etc. The group is guided by a committee of mortgage lenders offering energy-efficient mortgages.

3. EPA Energy Star – Existing homes EPA’s Energy Star Program is used by lenders as the standard of determining energy efficiency. Borrowers whose houses meet the standard qualify for the favorable terms of energy-efficient mortgages. EPA’s existing-home site contains information on the top energy saving improvements and how to save money by using energy-efficient improvements as part of the remodeling process.

4. EPA Energy Star – New Homes – EPA provides information on its Energy Star Program as it applies to the new-home market. Website features resources on finding a new-home builder, lender, energy-use rater, and utility programs that promote energy efficiency.

5. National Energy Raters Association – NERA is an association of professionals who rate and verify home energy efficiency and consult with practitioners, lenders, buyers, sellers and others on improving home efficiency.

Tips taken with permission from the National Association of REALTORS®

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Search San Francisco OPEN HOMES Right Now!!!

OPEN Homes Website!!!

OPEN Homes Website!!!

You can click right here and search for any type of property that is being shown as an OPEN HOUSE in San Francisco.  Call me, Erika Burke, Realtor, GREEN TODAY! at 415-279-1135, for more details about the properties, disclosure packages, Buyers Packages, Sellers Market Analysis,  and to strategize to make sure your sale or home purchase is a complete success.
This application has been created and promoted by the San Francisco Multiple Listing Service (MLS) and is the official place to search for available properties to view in the City.
When you are looking for GREEN homes, keep checking here for blog posts under GREEN Homes for Sale-San Francisco.
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Environmentally-friendly Glen Park

I SOLD this lot with plans and permits included to the developers of this property.  They have completed their build and chose to make it a GREEN build which is so impressive.  This is a cutting edge home of a beautiful design that has been expertly crafted with great attention to detail and concern for the environment.  I am proud to promote a colleagues listing for a GREEN home of this nature.  Call me, Erika Burke, Realtor, GREEN, 415-279-1135, Today for a viewing and to purchase this one of a kind custom, environmentally friendly home.

538 Laidley St., San Francisco, CA
REDUCED! New Construction! FOR SALE!

Listed by John Farnham at Brown & Co. Real Estate, San Francisco, Ca

3BR/3.5BA Single Family House offered at $2,279,000
Year Built 1907
Sq Footage 2,800
Bedrooms 3
Bathrooms 3 full, 2 partial
Floors 4
Parking 2 Car garage
Lot Size 2,495 sqft

New “Green” construction, featured on Discovery Channels Renovation Nation. This custom environmentally-friendly single family home in the heart of Glen Park is set atop a bay view lot. The inviting three bedroom, three and two half bath home is designed for the family that loves to entertain. Situated on four-levels the home boasts a formal dining room with box beam ceiling & French doors, gourmet kitchen, two bonus rooms, a wine cellar and media room. Conveniently located, walk to Glen Park Village and BART.

• Family room with box beam ceiling, fireplace and 8-foot French doors leading to a beautifully landscaped rear yard with slate patio
• Three spacious bedrooms with custom built-in closets
• Master suite features a sitting area, luxurious spa-like bath with steam shower and Huntington brass fixtures and custom walk-in wardrobe closet
• Formal dining room with barn style doors, box beam ceiling and 8-foot French doors to walk- out balcony
• Chef’s kitchen with custom walnut cabinetry, CaesarStone counters, Bertazzoni gas stove, Viking refrigerator, built-in Thermador coffee center and designer back splash
• Downstairs media room
• Whole house sound system, including amplifiers, speakers & remote control inputs
• Solar hot water system
• Top floor retreat with luxe bath, French doors overlooking landscaped rear yard, skylights and front room with Bay views
• Integrated security system
• Wine cellar
• Custom crown molding throughout
• Reclaimed wood floors with radiant floor heating
• 5000 gallon rain water catchment system for landscaping and toilet use
• Double insulated glass windows
• Hardie fiber cement siding
• Low VOC paints & caulks
• High volume Fly Ash concrete
• Xantrex solar electric
• Laundry center with Washer/Dryer hookups
• Two car parking

Visit for complete listing of San Francisco open homes

Call Erika burke, Realtor, GREEN at 415-279-1135 to view this propertyTODAY!

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