Congratulations on making it past what always feels like the longest month of the year. Now February is here and there are a lot of reasons to feel the love.
Valentine’s Day is a great excuse to show love for my job and for all of you humans in my network who make that job the best. I was also recently approved as a volunteer for SFCASA, San Francisco’s Court Appointed Special Advocate program that champions the rights of abused and neglected foster children in court by assigning each youth a volunteer representative; I’m excited to be a (small) part of helping them achieve that. If all that weren’t enough, this month also heralds both Lunar New Year and Black History Month.
What makes you personally feel extra fuzzy in February?
Ask an Agent:
How Do You Actually Get Paid?
There are a lot of misconceptions about the real estate industry and our roles as agents, largely thanks to its portrayal in popular culture. You know the stereotype: Annette Bening manically scrubbing a kitchen counter in American Beauty insisting to herself “I WILL SELL THIS HOUSE TODAY” while all we see of her efforts is a penchant for cleanliness, a polished (if questionable) wardrobe, and a frantic series of aspirational suggestions to clients for potential room use. On the other hand, there’s Million Dollar Listing which replaces house prep with a lot of contentious negotiations as if an entire real estate transaction were simply—forgive the phrase—a pissing contest between two aggressive Suits.
There is so much more being a real estate agent.
I want people to have a better sense of what we actually do and how that translates to a paycheck for me and a property sale or purchase for you, so I’m going to break this all down into a two-part exploration.
A Diversity of February Events:
Lunar New Year & Black History Month
2019: Year of the Pig
San Francisco is ushering in the Year of the Pig with a variety of events throughout the second half of February. Look out for the 268-foot-long Golden Dragon at the Chinese New Year Parade on February 23!
Celebrate Chinese New Year in SF »
February is Black History Month
February is Black History Month, and there’s no shortage of ways to celebrate the contributions of African Americans to both the Bay Area and our nation’s culture and history. For a dedicated experience, check out San Francisco Travel’s 11-stop African American Excursion.
Maya Angelou to Be Immortalized as Statue in SF
I shared this back in October, but it’s worth mentioning again in light of Black History Month now and Women’s History Month in a couple weeks: SF passed an ordinance to ensure at least 30% of our city’s statues are women, and Maya Angelou will be the first, going up in December 2020 in front of the central library; famed poet Angelou spent her early years in San Francisco, and was the first female African-American streetcar conductor.
February Market News:
Heading Into the 2019 Market
As of early February, the government shutdown is over—at least for a little while—the stock market has recovered dramatically from its late 2018 plunge, and interest rates are well down from November highs. A good number of large, local, high-tech “unicorns” continue to plan IPOs in 2019. All these are positive economic indicators for the Bay Area real estate market—but indicators have proven to be quite volatile over the past 5 months and future movements are not to be taken for granted.
As detailed in our last report, there was considerable cooling in the market in the second half of 2018. The month of January typically has the fewest sales of the year, sales which mostly reflect activity during the December market doldrums: We don’t consider its data to be a reliable indicator of conditions or trends. But activity is picking up, and the beginning of the spring sales season—which in the Bay Area can start as early as February—will soon provide more direction as to where the market is heading