Presenting America's Most Expensive Repossessed Property

Tyler Durden's picture

When one hears of foreclosed real estate or its sibling REO (real estate owned) aka repossessed property, typically visions of dilapidated shacks in Detroit, Las Vegas, or the Inland Empire come to mind. And with the average foreclosed home selling at $182,489 according to RealtyTrac, this is understandable. However, such a vision would be wildly incorrect when talking about the property located at 188 Minna St., in San Francisco, which just happens to be America's most expensive bank-owned home. As MSNBC reports, the property in question is quite unlike any other REO out there: because "there's the waterfall in the foyer. And the 2,500-square-foot master bedroom with a hallway just for closets. And the 22-foot glass walls that look out on San Francisco's Arts District." And while we don't know who the original owner is who happens to have walked away on this mortgage, we know which bank got stuck with it. Who else, but Bank of America. Luckily for the bank which recently tested a 4 handle stock price, this property won't be stuck on its books generating zero cash. "According to San Francisco real estate blog, lender Bank of America, which picked up the deed to the 20,000-square-foot penthouse in lieu of foreclosure back in July, just sold the condo. Listed at $35 million, 188 Minna St. was purchased for an eye-popping $28 million, making it the most expensive residential sale in the city's history." To be sure, whoever bought the REO from BAC likely got a good deal on it: "the bank's asking price is half of what the original owner, developer Victor MacFarlane, was seeking for the unit back in 2008, although he did slash the price to $49 million the following year." Which also means that Bank of America was likely largely was underwater on the "half off" sale, which also means a huge writedown on the paper value of the apartment. And one wonders why Bank of America trades at fractions of its book value.

Some more on the property:

Perched atop the St. Regis luxury residential tower, this six-bedroom, seven-bath (plus four half-baths) palace is practically a private hotel: There's a full gym with a sauna and steam room, 13-seat movie theater, 2,900 square feet of terrace space and parking for six cars.


There are no details on the buyer yet, but here's one parting thought: If the real estate agents involved earned a standard 6 percent commission on this deal, they'll pocket $2.1 million.

And for those curious to see just what a $28 million REO gets them, here are the pictures:

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bank guy in Brussels's picture

Clear title, or robosigned legal limbo title subject to clawback?

Troll Magnet's picture

personally, i would never buy any real estate in san francisco.  


fuck that.

alphabrew's picture

Rehypothecate that shit, bitchez

Manthong's picture


LOL.. First thing I thought of was a lot of broken pottery and statuary.

..and where's the range?

nmewn's picture

lol...its got to be one of the ugliest buildings (inside & out) I've ever seen.

The architect, interior designer and money man must have been high on crack when they put this one together.

tom a taxpayer's picture

Yes, more like a business office than a home to live in.

ClassicalLib17's picture

Yeah,  booty crack.  Whenever you're talking designers, they're always gay, and their designs are always "cutting edge"   Those cocksuckers know how to waste more of the customers money than even the architect.  We had a customer once who just had to tell us that she and her designer were taking a late morning flight to New York to shop for bath towels.  You can't hardly make this stuff up.   

Pegasus Muse's picture

What's with all these upscale apartments with the stark Post Modern Industrial look?  This place has the warmth and charm of an shopping mall.  Has some nice views though.  Too bad SF only gets 20 clear days per year.    

Max Fischer's picture



Victor MacFarlane purchased the property (as an empty shell) in 2005 for $30M, and then did a multi-year, multi-million $$ renovation on it.  The $70M and $50M offering prices were just pie-in-the-sky attempts to make millions on the property after it had been refurbished.  In the end, not only did BAC not lose a dime, they made huge profits on the interest that was paid over 6 years.  MacFarlane lost his original down payment, interest paid, and any renovation costs that exceeded $5M, which probably wasnt' much. 

Max Fischer, Civis Mundi 



nmewn's picture

I guess that explains the white paint with skid marks of color here &

caconhma's picture

Somebody paid just $28 million.

Big deal if it were somebody else stolen money. Just look at Jon Corzine and his associates who got to spend more than $1,200,000,000  of MF Global customers stolen money.


e2thex's picture

Math is dead.

At $1000/foot and that's about as far maxed out as you can get it without literally having solid lapis lazuli sinks and solid gold faucets, we're talkin' $20 million.  Where's the other fucking $15 million? That's a lot  for location.  It ain't Central Park.

There has too be an architect or builder here that wants to comment on this RIP.

MiguelitoRaton's picture

Owner probably repurchased it from BAC at a discount.

HelluvaEngineer's picture

Sorry. My backyard with a tractor parked in it is way cooler.

Waffen's picture

indeed, how would somone owning these feed thesmelves?

fuckign waste of money

spiral_eyes's picture

A soft landing for America 40 years from now?  Don’t bet on it.  The demise of the United States as the global superpower could come far more quickly than anyone imagines.  If Washington is dreaming of 2040 or 2050 as the end of the American Century, a more realistic assessment of domestic and global trends suggests that in 2025, just 15 years from now, it could all be over except for the shouting.

HelluvaEngineer's picture

40 years?  15 years?  What the fuck are you smoking?

Long-John-Silver's picture

Next year sometime is more like it.

economics1996's picture

At best, 2018.  The facade will come down in 2013.

Hugh G Rection's picture

What was the mortgage payment? $200K?

fucking waste of money indeed!

Mesquite's picture

When I first saw the headline for this thread...Was thinking might be talking about The White House.!!

Anyway ZHrs, be safe n have a good holliday all..!!

tion's picture

How do they feed themselves? They don't actually have to.  Call for room service from Vitrine.  Voila.  Been out of town for awhile and you don't want to come home to an empty fridge?  Call the concierge and ask them to have someone fill it for you. Voila. 

And if shit really hits the fan, I'm sure that anyone who could afford that penthouse can also afford a staffed farm in Chili or New Zealand or some other amazing place.

These folks live in a different sort of world.  The St. Regis is really nice, I'm not sure why people feel the need to hate on it.  Hell, I wouldn't mind living there if I could lol. 

Whoa Dammit's picture

That place is butt ugly! I wouldn't pay two cents to live there. It would be like living in a frickin' office building.

holdbuysell's picture

Sheezus. Just bring your toothbrush and move right in.

jcaz's picture

Wow, only a 40% haircut?  BAC got off cheap on this one......

whoopsing's picture

It's nice ,but not 28 big nice. 49?  Pffff

FifthSense's picture

That's a good point; Room for a lot of people and probably looks much bigger in the pictures (They always do). But when you're expecting a a nice 49 it better be something out of the ordinary.

whoopsing's picture

But in a sense it is extraordinary,just think how levered up the original note was ?

Sudden Debt's picture

To bad I don't have 6 cars or otherwise I would have bought it.
If they took a cheque...
From a bank in Zimbabwe...
And in Zimbabwe dollars....

Sudden Debt's picture

And no Helipad?!?

What is this? The 17th century?!?!

Long-John-Silver's picture

At one time I had more than 6 vehicles. I was a collector of Air cooled Volkswagen vehicles. I bought, sold, and traded them continuously for years. Then VW quit producing them and then for some stupid reason they became collectable for a few years. When the price for parts quadrupled overnight the fun was over. I sold my collection, parts, and tools when prices had peaked a couple of years into that idiocy.

UP Forester's picture

Kind of hard to find a place up here with less than 6 vehicles.

Of course, only two are daily drivers (usually 10-15 years old), a plow truck, a couple of parts cars, that one you've been "meaning to fix for a while," and one or two that are parked for a friend/relative "temporarily" for a couple of years....

tion's picture

Hmm I wonder what fraction of a percent of the U.S. population knows where the UP is...I was just considering this earlier today while conversing with someone about growing money on trees.. :)

UP Forester's picture

My avatar isn't quite a dead giveaway, as it's left off of a lot of maps, eh?

Long-John-Silver's picture

Mr. Ponzi will feel right at home in his new digs. I'm sure the prior Mr. Ponzi was greatly saddened when he had to move out.

Dapper Dan's picture

This slide show will work for me, I am getting tired of explaining to people all the reasons why America is in trouble and that they should prepare for the worst.

Now I just have to show them this.

Alex Kintner's picture

A flippin' dream house fer shure.

hamstercheese's picture

All I see here is a bunch of man made stuff.  Stuff. No people, experiences or nature, just stuff. So what.

sangell's picture

Victor Macfarlane was CAlPERS real estate advisor and was responsible for some huge losses including this turkey.


tahoebumsmith's picture

Definitely CALPERS jingle mail... So whats a 15 million dollar loss when your already in the hole about 3 TRILLION? LOL Cali is toast.

Racer's picture

UGH that is pretty naff for all that dosh!!!!

lolmao500's picture

Yeah but does it protects you against nuclear attack and zombies? Can you grow your own food? Can you hunt?

Didn't think so.

Eally Ucked's picture

Why not? Hydroponics, and you can populate your bedrooms with midget pigs. Zombies? First they have to get on the top of the building, somebody will be victim before you. Do you have nuclear shelter on your property?

UP Forester's picture

Doesn't everyone have a root cellar?