California’s Worst Rental Marketing Pics/Ads

From a tourist’s point of view, the word California summons images of the beaches of San Diego, the glamour of Hollywood and Beverly Hills Los Angeles and of course, the picturesque city by the bay, San Francisco. Along with these scenes come homes- whether they’re condos overlooking the ocean, mansions or charming Victorians. Us locals on the otherhand, know differently. California is more than SD, LA and SF. The homes, well, more varied.

Real estate marketing is quite the task. While you want to get your best foot forward and market a home accentuating its best assets through pictures and videos, you also want to have integrity and not do too much of a gloss-over on its perceived flaws. After all, when a buyer walks in, the last thing you want to hear is “I was bamboozled! This doesn’t look anything like the pictures!”.

Honest? Yes. Here are some examples of people whose motto seems to be “Take It or Leave It”. To hell with Photoshop! Or with cleaning for that matter.

Los Angeles $475.00/mo

“It is a hutch for sleeping. One needs to climb a ladder to get in. The last three people who have rented it were women who will testify as to it coziness”

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San Francisco $1050.00/mo

“Room for rent- One block to 3rd street city transit”

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Los Angeles $500.00/mo

“Take notice it is a small room.”

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Los Angeles $600.00/mo

“Private RV, amazing skyline views and you own private rooftop, a deal for new mover to LA that needs their own space.”

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San Francisco $450.00/mo

“Cozy private room in a prime location. Room measures 4 feet by 2.5 feet. Shelving unit is included!”

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Los Angeles $230.00/mo

“I m in need to rent the hallway of my small studio ( night time only). We don’t have a kitchen.”

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San Francisco $175.00/week

“Welcome to our guest tent. It’s furnished with a single airbed. This rental is limited to one person.”

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We’re sure to add more as we come across the worst real estate marketing listings. Do you have some of your own? Let us know and we’ll include it in the next part!

Movember (Moustaches + November) in SF

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It’s the most wonderful time of the year- for facial hair lovers. Right after Hallowee, do not be surprised if you see about 20 ‘stached or bearded guys in a single block especially, The Mission. Nope, it’s not related with winter. Nope, they’re not suddenly trying to get warm. It’s a lot more than that.

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What is Movember? Movember is a campaign to start raising important conversations and general awareness in men’s health. During the month of November, participants bid a temporary goodbye to shaving creams and razors. They’re walking, talking, living advertisements for things such as “Do you annual checkup!” and “Screen for prostate and testicular cancers!”.

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The annual Movember, which was conceived in Australia in 2003 and had its U.S. debut in 2007, has been attracting more buzz and more moustache-growers (dubbed “Mo Bros”) each year in the socially-conscious San Francisco Bay Area.

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Are you ready for Movember? Whether you’re a participant or a (thoroughly pleased) spectator, November is promising to be a great month! Check out the Movember Foundation!

Very SF: Ghost Ship Halloween

More than a popular Bay Area Halloween event, Ghost Ship connects the Bay Area’s finest independent artists with a creative mission and a responsive audience.

It is an example of how innovation is the hallmark of every community in the Bay Area, including the arts.

Ghost Ship idea was born from none other than Halloween in the Castro. After the problems of 2006’s Castro Halloween, SFPD actively discouraged the gathering in 2007. In 2008, Supervisor Chris Daly, and Mayor Gavin Newsom invited San Francisco’s entertainment producers to rethink Halloween and provide the City with an alternative to the Castro. Among the submissions was an art-drenched proposal- Ghost Ship.

But an idea had been born in that proposal and the two decided to throw a small version of the event at a little-used warehouse on Treasure Island called Building 180. In less than a week, over 100 artists came together to build a Ghost Ship out of recycled wood pallets and filled the space with large-scale art. The event was a huge success and not only proved the concept, but brought out hundreds of people who had never even stepped foot on Treasure Island.

Want to be a part of this annual event? Tickets are available here.

SF Trick or Treat: Best Neighborhoods

Every year, Zillow rounds up the best cities in the US to go trick or treating. They go even a step further and really breakdown which neighborhoods within winning cities are best! For the 5th year in a row, San Francisco nabbed the #1 spot! What can we say? Here in SF, we KNOW Halloween. Oh and how to throw a party!

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Zillow’s research team has crunched the data with a new and improved methodology that factored in home values. It allowed them to identify areas with the greatest share of population under the age of 15, and where homes are closest together.

After all, trick or treating is way more fun with other kids and when you can get the most candy in the shortest amount of time.

Breaking it down, here are the top 4 neighborhood rankings in San Francisco.

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Think your neighborhood does it better? Leave us a comment below!

Halloween at The Castro

Once there was a faraway land named The Castro District where Halloween every year becomes much more than just ghosties, ghoulies and things that go bump in the night. The whole neighborhood comes alive in a spectacle of outrageously cool costumes. This heightened extravaganza became so popular throughout the years that it attracted locals from other neighborhoods as well as those who intentionally come to the city to be a part of it.

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It began in the 1940s as a neighborhood costume contest. By the late 1970s, it had shifted from a children’s event to a gay celebration that continued to grow into a massive annual street party.

With its popularity and what with an inflated number of attendees, trouble was inevitable. Trouble came in the form of a shootout between rival gangs of thugs in 2006. This resulted in 9 wounded people. The event was shut down almost completely. Maybe a hundred or so people came. But in 2008 the party was more or less brought back from the dead. Thousands of people crowded the sidewalks and no one had any fatal injury- thanks to increased security.

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As of 2011, the City of San Francisco’s official site on the topic states:

“Halloween belongs to all of us. Following last year’s successful campaign to keep everyone safe and maintain the Castro’s tranquility, we’re continuing and expanding the Home for Halloween campaign. Like last year there is no party or special event in the Castro. However, there are lots of events and celebrations around San Francisco, throughout the Bay Area and right in your own “home” neighborhood!

This October 31st, bars and restaurants in the Castro will be open for business. However, as was the case last year the streets will not be closed to traffic. As in every other community in the City, there will be zero tolerance for behavior which doesn’t respect the celebrated diversity of our communities. And again like last year, there will be zero tolerance for individuals and businesses that do not obey alcohol consumption and distribution regulations. The Home For Halloween website will help promote your events so please let us know about what you have planned in your community.

The Castro is not appropriate for a party with 100,000 people. So, the Home For Halloween campaign enters its second year of celebrating Halloween throughout the Bay Area and encouraging people to respect everyone’s home, including the Castro. With your support, we can indeed make Halloween a “home” for celebrations that are fun, festive and respectful. Halloween is for everyone.”

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SF Mad Dash (For a Cause)

On Saturday, Oct 31st 2015 put on your Halloween costume and run 5k in the Golden Gate Park in this years SF Mad Dash!

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What is Mad Dash?

Run, walk and party! All ages welcome, too! Registered runner? You will receive numbered bib and a goody bag. Enjoy delicious food, refreshments and entertainment including live music, costume contest, kids’ corner, runners prizes, raffle and more! Proceeds from SF Mad Dash benefit Sunset Cooperative Nursery School. So in addition to having a great time, you will be helping a beloved community institution. Then, whether you run in the 5k race or not, there is an after-party at the Polo Field Stables.

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Sunset Cooperative Nursery School began in 1940 as the Parkside Play Center. It is the oldest continually operating parent-participation preschool in San Francisco. The school is dedicated to providing a trusting and caring environment for children to play, learn, and grow. With a strong focus on the community, the environment, and an overall betterment of the world, your donation will help us all in the present and future.

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Want to learn more? Visit their website and learn how you can part of the mad dash!

Union Square: Not Your Ordinary Park

“Union Square is the retail and cultural hub of San Francisco. It boasts the city’s largest collection of luxury, department and boutique shopping, making it one of the premier tourist attractions in the Western United States. A spectacular selection of hotels, art galleries, salons, and theaters also contribute to the area’s cosmopolitan, 24-hour character.”

Union Square, San Francisco

At the heart of Union Square is a landmark park. Built in 1850, Union Square was a demonstration gathering point for pro-Union on the eve of the Civil War.

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The historic park was named by San Francisco’s first mayor, John Geary, in remembrance of the rallies.

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Today, this one-block plaza and surrounding area is one of the largest collections of department stores, upscale boutiques, gift shops, art galleries, and beauty salons in the United States, making Union Square a major tourist destination and one of the world’s premier shopping districts.

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Grand hotels and small inns, as well as repertory, off-Broadway, and single-act theaters also contribute to the area’s dynamic, 24-hour character.

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Rebecca’s Tips

There’s so many things you can do in Union Square so plan ahead! Click on the links to check out options for parking, shopping, dining, hotels, art galleries and spas.

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San Francisco’s Best Neighborhood Donuts

Donuts

A doughnut or donut is a type of fried dough confectionery or dessert food. The doughnut is popular in many countries and prepared in various forms as a sweet snack. Donuts are usually deep-fried from a flour dough, and typically either ring-shaped or without a hole, and often filled.

You’ve probably had them every which way- glazed, filled, sprinkled, as holes (munchkins), you name it. Here in San Francisco, you can certainly go beyond popular chains. Krispy Kreme and Dunkin Donuts may have a hold on national popularity but you’ll be surprised what some neighborhoods have in store.

The Mission and The Marina- Apple Maple Bacon Donut

Dynamo Donut & Coffee 2760 24th St, San Francisco, CA 94110

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The Embarcadero- Chocolate Cookie Donut

Pepple’s Donuts 1 Ferry Building, San Francisco, CA 94105pepples-donuts

The Richmond- Nutella Bamboloni

The Heartbaker 1408 Clement St, San Francisco, CA 94118

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Nob Hill- Everything.

Bob’s Donuts 1621 Polk St, San Francisco, CA 94109

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SOMA- Chocolate-Covered Donut with Coconut Sprinkles, Regular Sprinkles

Pinkie’s Bakery 1196 Folsom St (at 8th St), San Francisco, CA 94103

The Tenderloin- Beignets

Brenda’s French Soul Food 652 Polk St, San Francisco, CA 94102

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Noe Valley- Glazed Donut

Happy Donuts 3801 24th St, San Francisco, CA 94114

The Sunset- Jalapeno Maple Bacon Donut, Oreo Cream-filled Donut

Twisted Donuts 1243 Noriega St, San Francisco, CA 94122

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Dis we miss your favorite spot? Leave a comment and we’ll explore and add your recommendations!

Did you know these foods originated in San Francisco?

San Francisco, mecca of cultures, religions and ethnicities has become one of the best foodie cities in the United States. Although we boast of cuisines and food items we’re best known for, these ones should be on top of everyone’s list as “Very San Francisco”. Why? Because pioneers that we are, they originated here in the Bay Area!

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Hangtown Fry

Hangtown fry was an omelette made famous during the California Gold Rush in the 1850s. The dish was invented in Placerville, California, then known as Hangtown. According to most accounts, the dish was invented when a gold prospector struck it rich, headed to the Cary House Hotel, and demanded the most expensive dish that the kitchen could provide. The most expensive ingredients available were eggs, which were delicate and had to be carefully brought to the mining town; bacon, which was shipped from the East Coast, and oysters, which had to be brought on ice from San Francisco, over 100 miles away. The dish was popularized by Tadich Grill in San Francisco, where it has apparently been on the menu for 160 years.

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California Sourdough Bread

This is not a stretch! Although one of the oldest sourdough breads was excavated from Switzerland, French bakers brought sourdough techniques to Northern California during the California Gold Rush, and it remains a part of the culture of San Francisco today. The nickname remains in “Sourdough Sam”, the mascot of the San Francisco 49ers. Sourdough has long been associated with the 1849 gold prospectors, though they were more likely to make bread with commercial yeast or baking soda.

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Pacific Sanddabs

Served only in Californian restaurants, the sanddab is a species of flatfish. It is a popular game fish in northern California, found on menus in the Monterey Bay and San Francisco area, though more difficult to find in southern California restaurants and markets. Usually sold frozen, some regard it as a delicacy, but it is very affordable and quite delicious.

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It’s It

In 1928, a celebrated San Francisco tradition began. George Whitney placed a scoop of creamy vanilla ice cream between two freshly baked large old-fashioned oatmeal cookies, and then dipped the sandwich into fine dark chocolate. The delicious combination of savory sweetness was declared by all to be “IT!” That how the IT’S-IT Ice Cream Sandwich was born and got its unforgettable name, being sold in droves exclusively in San Francisco’s own legendary Playland-at-the-Beach for over four decades.

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Rice-A-Roni

In 1895, Italian-born immigrant Charlie DeDomenico moved to California, where he set up a fresh produce store. A successful businessman, he married Maria Ferrigno from Salerno, Italy. Back home, her family owned a pasta factory, so in 1912 she persuaded him to set up a similar business in the Mission District of San Francisco. The enterprise became known as Gragnano Products, Inc. It delivered pasta to Italian stores and restaurants in the area. In 1934, Paskey changed the name to Golden Grain Macaroni Company. Inspired by the pilaf recipe she received from Mrs. Pailadzo Captanian, Tom’s wife, Lois, created a dish of rice and macaroni, which she served at a family dinner. In 1958, Vince invented Rice-A-Roni by adding a dry chicken soup mix to rice and macaroni. It was introduced in 1958 and went nationwide four years later. Because of its origins, it was called “The San Francisco Treat!”.

Do you know of other food items originating in San Francisco? Let us know via comments!

Fort Point San Francisco

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From its vantage point overlooking the spectacular Golden Gate, Fort Point defended the San Francisco Bay following California’s Gold Rush through World War II. Its beautifully arched casemates display the art of 3rd system brick masonry and interacts gracefully with the Golden Gate Bridge.

Fort Point is located at the south anchorage of the Golden Gate Bridge at the end of Marine Drive on the Presidio of San Francisco. The days that Fort Point is open change on a seasonal basis. So remember to check here to plan a visit!

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With a breathtaking backdrop and historical significance, Fort Point has been the subject of photographers around the World just like this one.

What To Do

Cannon Loading Demonstration Experience how soldiers came together to defend the Golden Gate following California’s Gold Rush.

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Fort Point, Guardian of the Golden Gate View this award-winning 30-minute video program about the history of Fort Point, from 1776 through World War II. Shown throughout the day in the Fort Point theater, located adjacent to the bookstore.

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Building the Golden Gate Bridge View the compelling story behind the construction of this national civil engineering landmark in a videotape made by Bethlehem Steel Company.

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Rebecca’s Tips

Layer up! It’s is almost always cool, damp and windy.

Dogs are allowed on leash on Fort Point lands but are not allowed inside the historic fort.

There is a small bookstore in the fort where you can buy souvenirs! 

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