Clip 3: Shotwell, in 1978 and Today

This post first ran on March 25, 2010.

840 – 844  Shotwell, a six-unit building, last sold in September, 1993 for $425,000. It is not currently for sale.

Tomorrow: Clip 4, A Shotwell Mini Story.

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  1. Mark

    I’m sorry, but you can’t equate the two stories in that clip.

    In 1978, you have people with no leases and no rent control protections.

    In the second clip, you have a tenant with full rent control protections. The reason the rent went from $1650 to $2100 was that the original leaseholder moved out.

    The current tenant is actually complaining that rent control favors existing tenants over new ones. Rent control does exactly that: it only permits rent increases at 60% of the CPI, privileging people who are already here. It’s the story of San Francisco.

  2. TheDude

    Close to shopping, close to movies, close to your job, high demand for the living space, and you are surprised to have to pay up? It’s unfair that your rent is high? Don’t pay it! Move somewhere that is cheaper.

  3. lame school paper

    score another fail for the berkeley J-school sweatshop. when does your grant run out so this site can go away.

  4. Anton

    Oh boo hoo

  5. Matt

    Before we see a massing of zombies beating the laissez faire drum on here… we do not live in a laissez faire real estate market, period.

    Take away the protection of leases and rent control… then we better take away the ridiculous process involved in purchasing real property… then we better take away the high cost of entering into the buyers market… then we better force cities to permit new housing units to be built in accordance to real demand… then we better outlaw land grabs that benefit only developers and disrupt existing neighborhoods… then we better fix inequities in city services from neighborhood to neighborhood… then we better make the process of relocating to a better rental deal as easy as shopping for and purchasing an iPhone on the web.

    For the very fact that the last demand is literally forever impossible real estate is never going to be laissez faire and thus will always require a degree of regulation. Picking on the gripes of the renter is really really really inhumane and backward when you look at the big picture.

    • Valenchia

      Good job beating up a straw man. No one claims we are living in a laissez faire real estate market. Most of your complaints are incoherent. You complain about developers but also say that you want as much housing built as possible. Huh?
      Sorry but it is perfectly reasonable to criticize the entitlement mentality of many tenants. In the real word grown ups have to learn how to navigate difficulties in life. But you seem to think that everything should just be handed to you.

  6. Diana

    Thanks for posting this video. As it happens, I lived in that building in the late 90’s! Sounds like rent is more than double what it was then.

  7. Mark


    What laissez-faire commenters are you talking about? The people back in 1978 were pretty screwed. The woman they interviewed today has rent control protections; they’re not as generous as the ones someone older than her has, but if her roommate hadn’t moved out, her rent wouldn’t have gone up.

  8. Why does a renter have more rights to a property than the owner on the deed? That’s like saying a whore has more rights to your husband than his wife or husband. Its crazy and wrong.

    • C. Russo

      More rights? No. The right not to be tossed out onto the street by a single rent hike? Yes.

      • Valenchia

        In a situation where there is a housing shortage, why do you assume that any who is here now has an absolute right over everyone else who might want to live here? That is what your argument boils down to.

  9. Mark

    They’re talking about the high cost of living in San Francisco in 1978. I thought those were the “good old days”!

  10. Local

    Ridiculous. This woman in the clip needs to wake up. Want to live in Sf, pay your fair share. I’d like to live in a nicer neughborhood – closer to shopping , restaurants –to, but I can’t afford it. Boo hoo for me. There are no free handouts for women like this. Good luck in life to her. She’s going to have a hard road ahead.

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