Alexander Clark Real Estate

‘The Front Steps’: Inner, Outer, Central–Where In the Richmond Is Real Estate Hottest?

Is the Richmond one neighborhood, or is it three–Inner, Outer, and Central?

In semantic terms, we could debate this all day; but in real estate terms the answer is three–please forward your hate mail to MLS if you disagree, we’re just the messenger here.

Generally speaking, the Outer Richmond is everything west of 33rd Avenue, Central lies between 32nd and Park Presidio, and the Inner Richmond is everything east of that; Sea Cliff, Lake Street, and Jordan Park are not included for these purposes.

Again, locals will argue about these boundaries all day, and even the question of whether Central Richmond should really be a thing remains unsettled.

But when your realtor talks about the Richmond, this is the sort of layout they almost certainly have in mind, as determined by the most oft-used real estate service. It may or may not be correct, but it is pretty much the default, and a default is handy.

So with that out of the way, the question remains: Where is the selling happening? Now that we’ve defined out terms, it’s simple to narrow the field down to, say, just sales from 2021 (since we’re still close enough to the beginning of the year for that to be a useful reference) and just for those three zones.

In all, the highest volume of home sales happens in the Central Richmond: 109 deals closed (publicly, that is) for all of last year, whereas for the Outer Richmond it was 84, and for the Inner Richmond 81.

This is potentially surprising, since historically speaking the Outer Richmond is usually reckoned to be the most populous area, while the Inner Richmond is more densely built; but the addition of Central carves out some of the most in-demand areas from both of those, whether by accident or design.

And as for where the money is? The Inner Richmond had the highest median sale price of the year (just under $1.78 million), but the highest price point all year long was actually an Outer Richmond sale for $5 million. Both other zones topped out at just $4 million each.

What’s most interesting though is that while there are as always some outlying data points, the grouping across all three spans is actually pretty tight: The difference between highest and lowest marks in the Richmond is a much more narrow window than, say, different areas of Bayview or SoMa during the same period.

At least this last year, the hottest area in the Richmond was…pretty much just the Richmond as a whole. And that’s usually how we like it.

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