Original Article By Tilly Armstrong At DailyMail.co.uk:

Nearly one in five homes sold in San Francisco have sold at a loss in recent months – way above the national rate. 

Murders, robberies, burglaries and widespread public drug use are forcing residents to flee the city – and putting off people from moving to what was once the hottest US property market. 

The 17.8 percent of San Franciscans losing money on their home sale in the three months to the end of February is close to the highest level in a decade. And it is four times the national average of 4.3 percent. 

In San Francisco, the typical homeowner who recently sold at a loss parted with their home for $155,500 less than they bought it for.

Nationwide, the average loss for the same period was around $40,000, data from real estate brokerage Redfin reveals.

Local Redfin agent Christine Chang said San Francisco’s market, in particular, is stumbling more than other parts of the Bay Area. 

‘Home prices have fallen from their peak, especially when it comes to condos,’ Chang said. ‘It’s not just because mortgage rates are high. 

‘San Francisco has lost some of its appeal post-pandemic. A lot of tech employers and big-name retailers have moved out of the city, and some of my clients have reported they’re leaving the area because they don’t feel as safe as they used to.’

San Francisco’s Westfield, once a thriving mall home to the largest Nordstrom in America in the city’s downtown area, is now a shell of its former self after a string of departures from big-name stores

Occupancy was at a measly 25 percent in January, and staff and shoppers told DailyMail.com how they were left ‘scared’ by ‘rising crime, drug-taking and homelessness‘ in the area.

Last month, residents of a wealthy neighborhood in the city said they had been left ‘traumatized’ by a recent jump in burglaries, robberies, and murders.

Some long-time residents said they had even resorted to using chicken wire to protect their homes from intruders and feeling so unsafe that they were thinking of moving away. 

Since the housing market recovered from the 2008 financial crisis, the percentage of home sellers in the city selling for a loss has been below the national average, per Redfin data, but this trend reversed in 2021.

Home sellers in the California city are also much more likely than those in the rest of the country to lose money as home prices have dropped significantly since skyrocketing during the pandemic homebuying boom.

The median sale price in the city peaked at $1.66 million in April 2022, and has since fallen 15 percent – some $250,000 – to $1.41 million as of February this year.

Despite this dramatic fall, the Bay Area is still home to the most expensive real estate market in the US.

The typical person who bought in San Francisco at nearly any point in 2021 or 2022, when the housing market was red hot due to ultra-low mortgage rates, Redfin said, would have taken a loss if they sold during the first few months of this year. 

But the real estate brokerage points out that prices in the city have swung up after hitting a low point of an average of $1.28 million in January 2023, when prices were declining in the face of elevated mortgage rates and tepid demand.

Home sellers would likely fetch a higher price now than they would have a year ago, it said.  


Following San Francisco, Detroit had the highest share of homes selling at a loss – some 10.8 percent – in the same time period.

This is followed by three other Rust Belt and Midwestern metros – Cleveland at 8.2 percent, St. Louis at 8.1 percent and Chicago at 7.9 percent.

Sellers in those places are more likely than most to lose money because, like in San Francisco, home prices have fallen from their pandemic peak

In Detroit, for instance, the median sale price is down roughly 20 percent from its pandemic high.

On the other hand, homes were least likely to sell at a loss in Providence, Rhode Island, where just 1.2 percent of homeowners who sold in the three months ending February 29 lost money.