1.  What is a condo conversion?

EACH city is unique with similar but different city and county provisions and subject to state ordinances for condo conversion.   A condominium conversion is the process of legally subdividing a multi-unit residential building into separate condo units.  In order for a conversion to occur, it must be approved by local municipality based on the property meeting a list of ownership and physical building requirements.  Once approved, a condo association will be established and individual units can be separately owned, financed, or sold. Condo conversion offers people who otherwise might be unable to afford to buy their own home a vehicle and alternative for home ownership.  

2.  What is a TIC (Tenants in Common)?

A TIC is a form of legal ownership to hold title, created by a legal arrangement where two or more people jointly own a multi-unit residential building and not regulated by a municipality. TICs are similar to condominiums, but there are important differences. TIC owners own a percentage of an undivided property with exclusive rights rather than an individual unit (no one owns a unit).  When forming a TIC agreement there are necessary elements to consider to create a winning situation for all owners — now and future.  

3. What is a Condo (condominium)?  It is a legal term describing form of ownership, it's often misused and not the name of an "apartment" that is owned.  A condo is a type of real estate divided into several units that are each separately owned with a proportionate interest in common area.  Traditionally, residential condominiums are frequently constructed as apartment buildings or complex. However, in alternative housing, multi-residential buildings (2-4 units) are typically located in neighborhoods, we refer them to "condo homes" as they have similar characteristics to single-family homes but in which the common area such as yards, building exteriors, and streets are jointly owned and jointly maintained by a community association and state regulated CCRs.

4.  What are the benefits of converting a property into a condo home?

Condo conversion historically gives an opportunity for a substantial positive economic and financial transformation, provide homeowners with many financial opportunities, including a significant increase in property value, access to lower interest rates and more favorable loan terms, greater autonomy and financial security, and more disposable cash. Condo homeowners are not jointly liable for a shared mortgage or shared property tax bill among other features.  However, there are also intrinsic values that can also be passed on to those you care about now and future.

For TIC owners, there is less risk involved in converting a property you already own than in purchasing a new property that you are not familiar with and that may have issues you are not aware of and typically higher costs.  By condo converting a property you already own you are reinvesting back into your own asset by transforming it into an individual condo home with many financial benefits.  TIC owners are well poised to take the next step into home ownership — individually and legally owning your own home — through the tool of condo conversion.

5.  What is the difference of a single multi-unit property ownership VS. separating out ownership?

Residential condominium conversions is a wise strategy and investment to maximize the highest and best use of your property. By converting into individual ownership of a jointly owned property, allows you to actively multiply your equity than by passively waiting for incremental appreciation, for much greater profits than leaving it as a single property.  It also provides the property owner and/or those living there with new opportunities for upward mobility.

6. Why should I invest in a condo conversion as opposed to another form of investment?

Real estate offers incredible opportunities and more millionaires make their fortunes in real estate. Condo conversion is a voluntary choice for positive "economic conversion" and is not merely a passive investment like traditional investments, such as the stock market or waiting for a property to appreciate over time. It is an active choice and a wise investment strategy that enables your money to work for you (leverage) to multiply the value of your property and ROI for exponential financial returns and exit strategy.  Conversions are non-linear approach to exponentail profits:

For example, if you invest $100,000 in a stock and the stock increases in value by 5 percent, you would earn $5,000. However, if you invest back into your property that same $100,000 to convert a $1.5 million duplex into condos, the value of each unit could immediately increase by an estimated 20 percent, or $150,000 — a total profit of $300,000. To look at it another way, your return on investment, or ROI (net profit divided by net worth) would be 200 percent as opposed to just 5 percent.

In addition, housing appreciation and "economic and financial conversion" is more valuable than the same rate of growth in stocks and other forms of investments or assets. That’s because housing appreciation is based only on the value of the property, not on your investment in it. For example, if you invest $100,000 in a stock and it increases in value by 5 percent, you would earn $5,000. However, if you invested the same $100,000 as a down payment on a $500,000 house and the property value appreciates 5 percent, you would earn five times that amount, or $25,000 PLUS the exponential increase of profits after condo conversion.

7.  When is a good time to transform a TIC to condo conversion?

Seize the moment today! TIC to condo conversion is a path to individual home ownership and building your short and long-term financial goals.  One of the unique features of a condo conversion is that it can add substantial value in both a sellers’ market and a buyers’ market in a shorter amount of time. You're not solely relying on appreciation of the market; you're making a business decision based on your financial situation and intrinsic value of your property.  Condo conversion owners have a unique opportunity to multiply financial transformation and profit — a historical track record for high exponential equity growth with independent property ownership.

8.  Is a TIC or condo conversion right for me? 

Many that have rented or wanted to take the next up from their current situation have done so successfully with proper planning and execution with a team of professionals. Every property is unique and no two projects are exactly alike. The benefits and opportunity of a TIC and condo conversion for many is well worth going through the process with the reward at the finish line.  It is a path many have taken and successfully reached both their personal and financial goals. WHITE TIGER has the resources and expertise to evaluate your property, explore your options and benefits.

9.  Is a condo conversion risky?

All investments carry some degree of calculated risk, but investing correctly in real estate has proven to be safe and exceedingly lucrative. Historically, condo conversions in San Francisco and Bay area have resulted in an immediate increase in value of 15-30 percent per unit. That’s on top of normal market appreciation, which has been substantial in San Francisco in recent years. Condo conversions make sense in both an “up market” — like today’s — and a “down market.”

The TIC and condo conversion process is complex but with the right team and hands on support by your side, the benefits and rewards resulting from a condo conversion are well worth the effort.  

10.  What if my property is occupied by renters or rent controlled?

Each city has different renter's protection and may or may not be rent controlled. Many cities allow property owners to convert without necessarily affecting renters current living situation.  If you are eligible for condo conversion, each city has its own regulations in which renters are treated fairly, provided new opportunities, or option for relocation assistance. Typically, renters occupying a building undergoing condo conversion are given the first right and opportunity to buy their unit.  In San Francisco, under the "Expedited Conversion Program", if the tenant decides not to purchase, the owner may be required to sign a lifetime, rent-controlled lease. Both the offer and lease must be recorded against title to the property, along with a separate binding agreement (with recording information on the Mylar map) between the City and County with all property owners.  

11.  Can I do a condo conversion myself?

Do you have the experience and knowledge to complete a conversion yourself?  There is more than meets the eye and risks you take without condo conversion experts by your side.  Interviews with real estate professionals that have completed their own conversion required an average of 200 plus hours and a couple of years to complete, with many twists and turns, additional expenses and one missed item could start things over, added unexpected costs to redo steps, time and stress.

Condo conversion is an intricate process and if not completed properly and requires an investment of time, money, and resources. For a successful conversion requires methodical planning, coordination with a team of industry professionals and local authorities, and meticulous execution. Mistakes can be costly in terms of time and money.  However, WHITE TIGER will make it easier and approachable for you in an efficient manner — we will guide the way.

12.  How long does a condo conversion project take?

Every project is different and needs to be treated as unique. The amount of time needed to complete a project depends on a number of variables, including the availability of professionals and workers, possible legal issues, and city's approval process to name a few. Currently, 2-4 unit buildings can take approximately 8-12 months or longer and 2-unit “Bypass” properties take 6-12 months or longer.  Start planning now with White Tiger.

13.  Do homeowners have to move, sell, or refinance after condo conversion?

No. Once legally approved, property owners have the right to pursue any of these options now or at any time in the future. They have the flexibility to take advantage of market trends and their property is poised for optimal profitability.

14.  What is the 2-unit building "Bypass Conversion" that allows for AUTOMATIC condo conversion?

In San Francisco, two-unit properties are the ONLY property type allowed by city rules to convert right away, provided they meet the following criterias: (1) both units have separate, individual owners for the past 12 months, (2) the owners meet the required percentage interest during the occupancy period, and (3) the owners do not violate the city’s "no fault" eviction laws and (4) other legal and city requirements.  A financial commitment by the property owner(s) is also required for eligibility.

15.  What makes a 2-6 unit building eligible for TIC to condo conversion in San Francisco? 

Each city and every property is unique and must be evaluated in light of current city regulations.  Currently, in order to qualify for conversion, 2-6 unit buildings must meet (1) owner-occupancy requirements and (2) must either meet 2-unit “Bypass” criteria or (3) 2-6 unit buildings “Expedited Conversion Program” (ECP) criteria.  For “Expedited Conversion Program,” (4) owners must comply with the city’s tenants’ rights (5) “no fault” eviction rules and (6) other legal and city requirements.  NOTE: ** As of August 15, 2017 the City and County has partial suspension of ECP Program in regards to certain ECP applications for buildings with NON-OWNING tenants. **

A financial commitment by the property owner(s) is also required for eligibility.

Note:  The city's "Bypass Conversion" criteria apply ONLY to 2-unit properties, which no changes were made to the city rules. However, the city's "Expedited Conversion Program” has a different set of requirements.   

16.  How much will it cost to complete a 2-4 unit building condo conversion in San Francisco?

Each city will vary and cities outside of San Francisco tends to be less in costs and vary depending on the size and scope of the project. San Francisco typical costs for some key components of the process include: (1) city application for a 2–4 unit buildings — $9,700, (2) “Bypass” conversions of 2-unit buildings of owner-occupied properties does not apply city "impact fee", (3) Expedited Conversion Program per unit "impact fee" varies — $4,000 - $21,063.78 (4) property survey — $6,000-$8,000, (5) city building inspection — $2,400 plus improvement costs and city permits (5) legal fees — $3,500 and (6) White Tiger Fast Track Condo Conversion Program, ALL-IN-ONE Solution flat fee — varies per project.

WHITE TIGER’s Fast Track Condo Conversion Program will pay for itself and leave more money in your pocket — with peace of mind.

17.  Yes, how do I start?

Start with trust. Call or Email WHITE TIGER for an appointment today to request a FREE consultation and find out if your property is eligible — no obligation — don't delay.  Let us lead you through the TIC and condo conversion jungle — safely and successfully. Find out more about condo conversions.  Call our office:  415-236-2426 or Email:

The time is right.  The benefits are compelling.  We accelerate the process, save you time and money.


Disclaimer: The rules and regulations governing condo conversions in each city are subject to change at any time at the discretion of local city officials. The information presented in this website is based on the latest information available at the time of publication.