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We Asked the 'Million Dollar Listing' Guys For Their Weirdest Home Sales

They didn't disappoint. 

All this can be yours.


We’re still not quite sure how we feel about Million Dollar Listing: San Francisco, which premieres tonight, but at the very least we’ll confess to fascinated curiosity about the weirdo ins and outs of moving houses in this town. Ask any realtor with more than a year of selling under his or her belt and you'll learn that San Francisco’s reputation for the odd and the profane doesn’t stop at the front door.

We asked the Million Dollar Listing guys, Roh Habibi, Justin Fichelson, and Andrew Greenwell, for their all-time weirdest listing and, in the spirit of the program, let’s see who can top the others.


The One Where the Circus Tent Threw Up

Habibi: I just closed 1242 Sacramento Street this week. It’s a Belle Arts building right across from Grace Cathedral, the kind of thing that should only be on the market for a few days. Instead it took two months and I had to reduce the price three times. The owners had covered every wall and floor with seven layers of red lacquer paint, just the brightest, most blinding red you can think of. Then came the cheetah print carpets, and the gold foil ceilings.

To set the whole thing off: black and white tents (indoors), and lime green and turquoise furnishings. One of the guys on the show said it looked like a circus tent threw up in there. Actually, I think they pulled the whole thing together amazingly well, but buyers tend to react certain ways: stunned. Amazed. Epileptic. If the old owners had just agreed to repaint we could have sold it in no time, but they refused and ended up leaving a couple hundred thousand dollars on the table. But honestly, I hope the new owners never change it.


The One With the Fire Pole

Fichelson: There was the big brick mansion out of Webster Street where the old owner had 100 cats, no electricity, and walls covered in black murals, that was pretty weird. But my all-time strangest has to be the Cole Valley firehouse, and this is one you’ll actually see in the show: It was really just literally a fire station, but the owner had converted it into two units, so it was really tall and thin and all the rooms were stacked right on top of each other. And yes, there was a pole.

So everyone walks into this place and thinks, oh, how cool. But then they immediately think, yeah, I can’t move my family in here. Single people didn’t want it because there was nowhere to entertain, no main room, just boxes piled up. The woman who eventually took it decided to install an elevator. It was the only way to open the place up.


The One With the Missing 200 Feet

Greenwell: There was this one house where we went over the place and realized we had 200 square feet missing. I checked every room but we kept coming up short, and nobody could explain it. Finally I cornered the seller and forced him to own up, so he shows us the hidden door behind the shelf in the pantry. There was our 200 feet: in his sex dungeon. He was a very prominent doctor, by the way.

I think he thought he could just not mention it, move all of his stuff out, and then disclose it once the house was actually sold. I looked at him and I said, "I’m going to be honest, I don’t think this is going to increase selling value." Eventually we made him remodel it. People with put up with a lot, but not chains in the walls. I had to decide what to refer to the room as. We settled on "entertainment parlor."


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