760 Dolores St, San Francisco
Exterior (before): Plants and untrimmed trees hid the home. Repeated tenant move-ins had damaged walls and railings. Front door area was peeling and glass was covered in carbon soot.
Exterior (after): We thoroughly cleaned, including stained glass, light fixture and windows. Repainted railings and gate. Gave this old beauty more impact with meticulously painted details and front door in sophisticated, elegant blue.
Entryway (before): The lovely arched windows on the door were wasted in such a dark, dreary setting. And our design team was unanimously against the burnt orange walls and lack of pizzazz.
Entryway (after): Original glory restored—the welcoming blue door opens to refined tone-on-tone design, highlighting the home’s rich Victorian heritage. Beautiful hardwood floor did not require refinishing.
Front parlor (before): We called for a color palette rescue for at least four outdated oranges and browns—floors, walls, curtains and banister. Curtains overpowered impressive large glass panes and prevented light from dancing on interior surfaces.
Front parlor (after): Unlike most front parlors, a spacious seating arrangement was possible. Slight contrast in wall and picture rail visually heightened ceiling. Neutral furniture, carpet and textiles downplayed orangish oak floors, so saved sellers from restaining.
Second parlor (before): Dark walls, wall-mounted TV competed with the original design intent of this room.
Second parlor (after): Continuation of our two-tone paint plan. Removed TV and distractions to show room’s elegant appeal for family gatherings, reading and elevated lifestyle. Changed lights to high-output LEDs for a brighter, uplifting feel.
Upper family room (before): Sandstone fireplace looked pinkish against gold-orange wall. Owners were in love with the paint color, insisted it should stay. Craig had anxiety about showing the room as an office and how buyers would react.
Upper family room (after): Too many lines, moldings and built-ins, so soft white was our simplifying finish. Fireplace remained the centerpiece and a large artwork’s color and scale stressed enormous ceiling heights. Visitors clamored to sit and enjoy unobstructed SF skyline views.
Duplex living space (before): Three gas meters revealed the original duplex layout. This dark home office had a separate entry off the front foyer, a level below the main entrance. To get top selling price, we had to persuade buyers it would work as a bedroom.
Duplex living space (after): Light plays a critical role throughout the house. Converting to a bedroom and upgrading recessed lighting to LED created an inviting, natural atmosphere that buyers responded to.
Attic bedroom (before): Reaching this converted attic bedroom required some physical effort, traversing a circular metal staircase. We had to make the destination more satisfying, to justify the trek.
Attic bedroom (after): Fresh paint, a view from the desk and a nice seating area convinced buyers this perch was worth the effort. Buyer response was overwhelmingly positive.
Back yard (before): Untended and overgrown plantings were visible through a wall of glass off the kitchen. All the right elements were present, but some TLC and a color splash were in order.
Back yard (after): With the removal of unshaped, low-lying shrubs, we revealed graceful bamboo stalks. Our patio staging introduced colors to coordinate with indoor design, and results were dramatic for very little expense.
Upper family room (after): Comfy, casual and modern, with a view to remember.
- Was rented at $12K/mo., but rents decreased in recent years
- Built as a duplex, but would market as a single family home to benefit sellers
- Old-style, dim recessed lights made the home feel dark and oppressive
- Paint colors too disjointed and dated—yellow, gold and brown
- Attic bedroom was dark, claustrophobic and unappealing
Results of Our Work
- Victorian architecture showcased with a clean finish
- Consistent fresh colors throughout made design feel deliberate and unified
- Just $15,000 in upgrades, including lighting, polishing the finishes, extensive cleaning, made home sparkle
- Listed: $3.9M
- Sold: $4.2M
- Offers – 2
- Days on market – 7
Small Resurfacing Budget, Big Difference
This large rental home, 3,210 square feet, was badly thrashed. But we created a very strategic resurfacing plan, allowing the family to spend only $15,000 to make major improvements in the home’s attractiveness.
The owners lived in Boston and we took care of everything, so they didn’t need to make the trip to San Francisco. For decision making, the family relied on Craig’s 88 photos of the home’s surfaces, finishes and fixtures. Like most landlords, they were surprised to see the level of deterioration caused by many years of tenant occupancy.
This is one of our most dramatic and economical resurfacing outcomes. The property sold after just 7 days on the market for $1,308 per square foot, a record for the neighborhood.
760 Dolores Street Resurfacing Plan
|Exterior Landscaping||$1,100||Add ground cover, trim front trees, sweep and rake.|
|Interior Painting||$6,400||Remove shutters and large curtain rods throughout home. Selected rooms painted neutral white. Remove wallpaper from bathroom, smooth and repaint. Designer color choice.|
|Re-grouting showers||$800||Stained and faded grout was replaced, commercially matched with the existing colorations.|
|Exterior Painting||$1,850||Repaint front railing, front gate and entry iron. Paint entry staircase walls, front door landing and other areas of high impact. Clean and repaint side deck.|
|Upgrade Interior Lights||$1,700||Recessed cans and track lighting upgraded to LED. Install upgraded bathroom lights in brushed nickel finish.|
|Carpet||$1,450||New carpet in upstairs bedrooms.|
|Professional Cleaning, Power and Window Washing||$1,600||Clean all appliances, surfaces, bathrooms, kitchen and lights. Wash windows and skylights. Power wash exterior surfaces, seating areas, side patio, etc.|
|Total||$14,900||Work completed in 15 business days. Advanced planning of 3 weeks to line up all work, secure dates.|
* Professional Staging $8,900