Parking in San Francisco – Tips to Sneak Good Spots!

Tips on Parking in San Francisco

If you are reading this, you are already living in San Francisco or are looking to live here, and you’re wondering about parking here. San Francisco is an amazing little place, home to around 45,000 happy residents, and it can become a bit of a game to secure a parking space. There are actually tricks to parking that enable you to sneak good spots that others may miss. Here are some of them:

Check any no parking signs posted by the city or at construction sites. The dates may not correspond with the day you were parking. If the dates don’t correspond with the date your parking you can snag that space.

Also check signs in front of restaurants. They reserve their white zones for dining hours which are often towards end of day. You are allowed to park in front of Absinthe at Hayes and Gough for example, up to the noon hour. Other restaurants have even later starting times.

Nearly all of SanFfrancisco’s parking meters now enable you to pay by phone, using a little app called PayByPhone. This has been a game changer for me-I cannot tell you how much money I save on parking tickets now.

The curb your wheels thing is super important-they will ticket you even on a mild slope that seems nearly harmless.

Occasionally, very, very occasionally, you can find a red zone that has been painted by hand instead of the city. You can identify them because they will have no yellow Department of Parking and Traffic indicators painted at either end. Residents sometimes do this in an effort to reserve spaces that are conveniently in front of their houses.

Memorize your street cleaning schedule. The moment it ends, the streets can be pretty clear and it becomes easier to find parking. Some cars literally follow the street sweeping truck and park behind its path.

Figure out where the reasonably priced garages are. Some of them are run by the city and offer a rate identical to what you would pay at a meter. A little app called SFPark can help you find the nearby City garages which usually offer the most favorable rates. But if you’re in a serious bind, you can spring for luxe.com, which will valet your car from wherever you are.

Cece Blase
Paragon Real Estate Group
CalBRE#00926690

City Hall is illuminated as part of awareness campaign for Covered California

San Francisco City Hall became the latest iconic building to be lit with the Covered California logo and colors Thursday night. This bright promotion is geared towards raising enrollment awareness for residents across the bay area and all of California. A lifeguard tower in the Central Coast was also lit with the Covered California spotlights.

The statewide bus tour and spotlight campaign is intended to raise public awareness about the opportunity for all eligible Californians to get health coverage during open enrollment, which will be from November through Jan. 31, 2016. This lighting installation is part of a 10 day, 29 city, statewide bus tour of hospitals, clinics, and storefronts. Covered California is spotlighting iconic buildings and hundreds of enrollment locations across the state.About Covered California

Covered California helps individuals determine whether they are eligible for premium assistance that is available on a sliding-scale basis. Consumers can then compare health insurance plans and choose the plan that works best for their health needs and budget. This program is designed to help make sure that everyone has access to affordable health care options.

Covered California is the state’s marketplace for the federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. Covered California, in partnership with the California Department of Health Care Services, is responsible for creating a new health insurance marketplace in which individuals and small businesses can get access to affordable health insurance plans.

Farm Fresh To You announces a wider variety of farm products for delivery

Farm Fresh To You, a local organic farm delivery service, announced this week that they have expanded their packages to include a variety of over 100 farm products to their customers. The box subscription service is helping other local farmers market their goods in a new way.

“Farm Fresh To You’s farm product add-on service is helping us get our products to the market in a new way,” said Jim Etters, director of land management, Seka Hills. “We sell olive oil, honey and vinegar through their delivery service, and our orders are increasing monthly. Farm Fresh To You has the same commitment to quality and sustainability that Seka Hills does, and we value this local partnership.”

How does the service work? Farm Fresh To You Customers select which size box of produce they wish to have delivered: small, medium, or large. There are several types of boxes and the boxes are customizable. Customers can then choose to have the goods delivered to their home or to their office.

Founded in 1992, Farm Fresh To You delivers produce to major metropolitan areas in California including the San Francisco Bay Area, the greater Sacramento region, greater Los Angeles, and several other counties.

“Farm Fresh To You members can now customize their boxes to choose the produce they want from our seasonal selection,” said Thaddeus Barsotti, farmer and co-CEO, Farm Fresh To You. “Many farms also make specialty food items and other farm products, and we decided our customers would love the ability to add these products to their delivery service.”

Farm products for sale through the Farm Fresh To You website include apple juice, applesauce, chili sauce, crackers, coffee, dried fruit, dried mushrooms, dried pasta, dry beans, eggs, flowers, granola, jams, maple syrup, mustard, nuts, olive oils, rice, seasonings, specialty flours, specialty salt, tomato sauce, vinegars, wreaths and yarn. The site also offers gift packages or subscriptions, which for the hard to buy for may be an excellent option for this holiday season. This 2nd generation owned family farm is dedicated to helping those in the area enjoy premium healthy produce right at their doorstep.

Tech company Pillow expands to offer more rentals in surrounding areas

Home rentals are hot, and just one short year after their launch Pillow is expanding into Southern California. Pillow is a tech-driven company and currently the U.S.’s largest urban vacation rental manager. They developed a communal market for people looking to rent out their homes. Their system simplifies the process for all parties involved in the home rental.

Currently, Pillow only manages rentals in California and Washington State with areas in and around the cities, San Francisco, San Diego, Los Angeles, and Seattle. New cities include Universal City and North Hollywood; Hermosa, Manhattan, and Redondo Beaches; Long Beach, Newport, and Irvine; and Palm Springs. The goal is to have this expansion completed by the beginning of November.

How does Pillow differ from Airbnb? Pillow ensures the home renters that the process will be simple. All potential renters will be screened before booking the home. All reviews through the booking channel will be taken into consideration. If a person does not have enough reviews the company will interview the person to check if they would be a good fit for the home they are looking to rent.

“We’re bringing the predictability and consistency of the hotel world to the unique and heart-felt individuality of home-rentals,” said Pillow CEO Sean Conway. “We’re here to make vacation home rental hassle-free and profitable for every homeowner.”

Pillow handles all rental bookings, key transfers, and cleaning and maintenance of the property all while maintaining communication with both parties involved. For people considering opening their property up for rentals, this company makes the process as simple as possible. If something is not left how the homeowners left it, Pillow urges them to reach out to the company and they will fix any problems. Pillow still recommends renters to have a Homesharing Liability Insurance.

The market expansion is accompanied by increased growth within the company and the availability of new services. Pillow recently introduced a free appraisal service – the first of its kind in the industry, which allows any homeowner to see an estimate of how much rental income they can expect from their vacation home. Pillow’s proprietary algorithm, which factors in 85 different criteria including location, number of bedrooms, and amenities, is able to accurately predict both occupancy and monthly rental income. The market expansion is sizable, expecting to open in 10 U.S. cities within the next year. For more information be sure to visit Pillow and find out how to get started.

RushTix is a new affordable subcription for local events in the bay area

RushTix was just launched for the San Francisco Bay Area, and they plan to disrupt your streaming relationship with your smart tv. The San Francisco area is well known for its artistic culture throughout the country. Despite the numerous live shows that occur within the city, more people are watching the shows on television rather than attending the live event. Enter RushTix and an affordable way to turn couch potatoes into social butterflies. With RushTix’s subscription plan, residents will pay a flat monthly rate that will give them unlimited tickets to local events.

We’re offering the Starter Pass at a ridiculously low entry point because it is actually more ridiculous that great local shows are not selling out.

-Founder and CEO of the brand, Jill Bourque.

A wide range of events are offered each month. Live performances are the most common events offered, but there are also tickets for festivals, wine tastings, and museum activities. Members can also suggest other types of events they would like to have offered as well. New events are added to the list every day in order to give members the most opportunities and options possible.

RushTix is a membership ran program, enrollment into RushTix is limited and only offered periodically for this reason.. Members create a username and password for the website to check the lists of available events that are updated and posted everyday at 11am. RushTix limits membership because they only receive a certain number of tickets from various events for distribution, once all the tickets are claimed they can not offer any more for that particular event. Usually, tickets become available the week of the event.

The majority of the tickets are for Thursday-Sunday events, but there are exceptions. Depending on the level of membership a person has, they are able to “gift” their tickets to friends if they are unable to attend the event themselves. There are three membership levels to accommodate different lifestyle needs. Cancellation of the membership is possible at any point, and there is not a long-term commitment upon joining.

This is the first pass created that offers tickets to unlimited cultural and art events for a flat monthly rate. After expanding in the San Francisco Bay Area, they plan to extend to other cities across the county. For more information, go to Rushtix to see everything they offer.

RushTix is a new affordable subscription for local events in the bay area

RushTix was just launched for the San Francisco Bay Area, and they plan to disrupt your streaming relationship with your smart tv. The San Francisco area is well known for its artistic culture throughout the country. Despite the numerous live shows that occur within the city, more people are watching the shows on television rather than attending the live event. Enter RushTix and an affordable way to turn couch potatoes into social butterflies. With RushTix’s subscription plan, residents will pay a flat monthly rate that will give them unlimited tickets to local events.

We’re offering the Starter Pass at a ridiculously low entry point because it is actually more ridiculous that great local shows are not selling out.

-Founder and CEO of the brand, Jill Bourque.

A wide range of events are offered each month. Live performances are the most common events offered, but there are also tickets for festivals, wine tastings, and museum activities. Members can also suggest other types of events they would like to have offered as well. New events are added to the list every day in order to give members the most opportunities and options possible.

RushTix is a membership ran program, enrollment into RushTix is limited and only offered periodically for this reason.. Members create a username and password for the website to check the lists of available events that are updated and posted everyday at 11am. RushTix limits membership because they only receive a certain number of tickets from various events for distribution, once all the tickets are claimed they can not offer any more for that particular event. Usually, tickets become available the week of the event.

The majority of the tickets are for Thursday-Sunday events, but there are exceptions. Depending on the level of membership a person has, they are able to “gift” their tickets to friends if they are unable to attend the event themselves. There are three membership levels to accommodate different lifestyle needs. Cancellation of the membership is possible at any point, and there is not a long-term commitment upon joining.

This is the first pass created that offers tickets to unlimited cultural and art events for a flat monthly rate. After expanding in the San Francisco Bay Area, they plan to extend to other cities across the county. For more information, go to Rushtix to see everything they offer.

The San Francisco Fall Antiques Show // Benefiting Enterprise for High School Students

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The San Francisco Fall Antiques Show, now in its 34th year, is the oldest and most prestigious art and antiques fair on the West Coast. Held at Fort Mason each fall, the FAS presents 60 of the finest art and antiques dealers from around the world and is fully vetted by the vetting committee, organized in cooperation with the Antiques Dealers Association of California (ADAC). It is a must-see destination show for collectors and enthusiasts of art, antiques and design.

Objects exhibited and sold on the show floor span the ages, from antiquity through the 20th Century, covering genres including Fine Art, Modern Art, Furniture, Textiles, Photography, Asian Art, Carpets, Ceramics, Porcelain, Sculpture, Rare Books, Works on Paper, Objets d’art, Jewelry and Metals.

The 4-day show offers the opportunity to immerse yourself in the world of great art and antiques with programming each day, including The Lecture Series, featuring 6 prominent speakers over 3 days, show tours, talks, designer events and the Young Collectors Evening.

The Fall Antiques Show opening night Preview Gala has been called “the highlight of the San Francisco Social Season” and opens the show with live music, caviar and vodka bars, flowing champagne, sumptuous buffets and the first glimpse of the best art and antiques from around the world, all available for purchase.

Please Visit Eventbrite for More Details

HERO Financing allows homeowners to make green home improvements affordably

Homeowners have more opportunities than ever to improve their homes with energy efficient and eco-friendly upgrades thanks to HERO Financing. PACE (property assessed clean energy) is a program developed through HERO (home energy renovation opportunity). The program helps homeowners become more energy efficient and reduce pollution emissions. Eligibility for the program or products varies depending on the applicant’s location.This program is currently being offered in 352 communities throughout California.

On September 22, 2015, HERO announced program availability in 25 additional communities, making HERO accessible to 360,000 additional housing units across California! This includes 23 cities and two counties. With this latest addition, 78% of Golden State households can now use HERO to lower their utility bills while helping the environment.

To date, HERO has funded more than 42,500 residential energy efficiency, renewable, and water conservation projects, totaling more than $846 million in financing, and has helped to create more than 7,000 California jobs through these investments. Over the past four years, the program has been operating in various counties of Southern California with great success. Now, with San Francisco offering the program to their residents, other Northern California communities are making the program available to their residents. To further increase the expansion of this program, on August 24th the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) was directed by President Obama to allow properties to be purchased and refinanced with PACE loans when applying for an FHA-insured mortgage. The goal of making PACE loans more attainable is to inspire and create incentives for energy saving renovations nationwide.

HERO provides financing for a variety of energy saving products. The program offers a list of over 900,000 products they offer financing for on their web page.The process to apply for the program is simple. Applicants fill out required paperwork and select the energy saving renovations they desire along with a contractor. After the paperwork is signed and they are approved, the process begins. To offset the initial costs of renovations customers pay for the energy efficient improvements over time through their property taxes. Since 2011, $800 million in clean energy improvements have been made on approximately 35,000 homes. This program is expected to continually grow over the years and help save energy.

Commercial and residential properties both qualify for the program, for more information on what properties qualify visit the HERO webpage . The website has thorough explanations for their frequently asked questions and has additional information regarding how the program operates. Interested parties can also check out their vibrant YouTube Channel, which features many testimonials from happy applicants. Take a moment to review the full list of participating areas here.

Sources:

HERO

Federal Housing Administration Move on PACE Showcases Program’s Possible Impact

Super Bowl 50 is creating a hot temporary rental market in the bay area

Super Bowl 50 is scheduled for February 7, 2016 at the Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara, California. This is the home stadium to the San Francisco 49ers. Only to add to the area’s excitement for hosting the game, this is the first Super Bowl to be held in the Bay Area since 1985. Still several months away from the game, the area already has limited hotel availability. The NFL has already booked thousands of rooms for players and people associated with the league. This leaves the estimated one million or more spectators with limited hotel options. This is a benefit for people planning to rent their homes out for the weekend. Many online temporary rental sources are reporting an increase in traffic.

As expected, Santa Clara is already seeing an increase in the area’s rental market. Searches on Airbnb as well as the number of rental listings have skyrocketed for the Super Bowl weekend. Although thousands of listings have already popped up for the weekend, more and more residents are seeing this lucrative opportunity and are quickly preparing their homes to be listed as rentals. In comparison to 2014, there has been an average of six times more listings added each week according to tipping.com. The typical price to rent during the Super Bowl is approximately three times higher than the normal rate. The Super Bowl is still five months away and prices are already high and are expected to increase as the Super Bowl moves closer.

NBC News reported on the rising rental rate in the Bay Area with the approximate room per night rates that are already popping up; “Current listings on the high end of pricing include a four-bedroom house in San Jose for $3,500 per night, a three-bedroom house in Santa Clara for $2500 per night, and a four-bedroom house in Santa Clara for $1850 per night.”

Tripping.com released data surrounding the Bay Area vacation rental market leading up to Super Bowl 50. Even being five months away, prices for places to stay in the area are already sky high, and with +1 Million people expected to attend, it’s only going to get higher. Vacation Rental Prices Are Up: The average price for an available, Bay Area listing from 2/5/16 – 2/9/16 is $516; the same listing on a different weekend is $297 – a 73% increase in price for the Super Bowl weekend. Even Higher 2016 Rates To Come: Santa Clara, CA has seen a 206% increase from 2015, however, this is an early estimation since not all property owners have updated their rates for 2016.

Many people are planning on renting out their homes and leaving for a vacation during the Super Bowl madness. There are also some individuals who are also planning on renting out rooms in their homes for less than the people renting entire homes. With Santa Clara being located in the beautiful Bay Area and being just a short drive from San Francisco as well as other cities, there are numerous opportunities for people throughout the Bay Area to profit from this sporting event.

State of the art renovations announced for Golden Gate Wholesale Produce Market

September 21, 2015

Golden Gate Wholesale Produce Market has released an exciting renovation plan to improve their facility. The renovation plan was developed through extensive research and collecting feedback from customers and businesses. The Golden Gate Wholesale Produce Market is just a short drive from any location in the San Francisco Bay area and offers the widest selection of fresh fruits, vegetables and organics in Northern California.

The renovation will benefit San Francisco residents by offering new jobs, green utility improvements, and enhance the customer’s shopping experience. The market plays an important role in San Francisco’s economy and the $8 million dollar proposal is exciting for all parties involved.

“The state-of-the-art enhancements to be made over the next year include new solar/energy efficiency upgrades, cold chain food storage management and worker safety systems, as well as smoother traffic flow within the facility, which is a mile from San Francisco International Airport on Highway 101,” said Peter Carcione, President of the Golden Gate Produce Market.

The market serves approximately 15 million residents. To best serve their growing community of diverse customers, they have an array of ethnic and specialty produce. The Market itself strives to promote healthy lifestyles and habits through their consistent commitment to food safety and fresh produce consumption.

Renovations planned include: Solar panel installations, additional parking, improved cold goods storage, and rehab of the buildings exterior and signage.

In the Market’s 53 years of operation, this is the largest renovation they have planned. This will be influential to the economy of Northern California, as it is currently the largest produce terminal within that area. The Golden Gate Produce Market employs 475 people and has twenty-three independent and family-owned businesses that also operate within the market. In order to create a better working environment for the employees, the renovation plan has multiple upgrades that will increase the workers safety with additions such as adding better lighting and developing loading dock safeguards.

Decreasing the Market’s carbon footprint is also a large part of the renovation plan by implementing new systems to help with decreasing energy consumption and waste. The Market is already “green” as they use recyclable materials and encourage others to recycle outside of the Market. The Market is now partnering with South San Francisco Scavenger to increase the efficiency and ease of recycling and composting. To make the Market even more “green” the main goal of these energy renovations is to drastically reduce the Market’s energy intake from the power grid by the end of 2016. This will be accomplished partly through the planned solar panel additions that are expected to generate more than 2,015,648 kilowatt-hours of electricity every year according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

For more information about the renovation visit their site Golden Gate Produce Terminal and stay tuned for these exciting changes!