The Real Deal New York

They paid $90K for a street lined with multimillion-dollar homes. Now, they’re looking to cash in

Homeowners want city to rescind tax sale
August 07, 2017 05:10PM

Homes in San Francisco’s Pesidio Terrace

You can think of It As Street justice.

A couple who bought a private San Francisco street lined by multimillion-dollar mansions for $90,000 is looking to cash in on that investment.

Tina Lam and Michael Cheng bought Presidio Terrace two years ago in a city-run auction after the neighborhood’s homeowners association failed to pay a $14-a-year property tax bills for some 30 years, the San Francisco Chronicle reported.

Now, the husband and wife are looking to either sell the road or charge homeowners to park on it.

“We could charge a reasonable rent on it,” said Cheng, a real estate investor, who added that the couple has been talking to land-use experts to see what their options are for the property. “We were looking to get title insurance so it could be marketable.”

The tony neighborhood has been home to residents such as Sen. Dianne Feinstein and her Wall Street husband, Richard Blum, as well as House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi and late Mayor Joseph Alioto.

The homeowners association, however, said it failed to pay its bill because tax information was being sent to the address for an accountant who hadn’t worked for the owners since the 1980s, and is asking the Board of Supervisors to rescind the sale.

But the office of the treasurer-tax collector said the city followed the law.

“Ninety-nine percent of property owners in San Francisco know what they need to do, and they pay their taxes on time — and they keep their mailing address up to date,” a spokesperson said.

In other San Francisco news, developers have turned to a former radioactive-waste site on an island off the coast of the Bay Area city as the next possible real estate destination as demand for housing continues to climb. [SF Chronicle] Rich Bockmann