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The family feud behind bizarre $488K Russian Hill home sale

The image shows a small two-story white house with a terracotta tiled roof, large front window, blue garage door, and steps leading to a blue front door. Surrounding greenery includes a small tree and bushes.
For $488,000, this Edwardian-style home at 30 N View Court, San Francisco, California 94109 appears to be the dream home at an impossible price. But beneath the surface is a deep and tragic family feud. | Source: Sam Mondros/The Standard

Tucked in a side street of San Francisco’s Russian Hill is a classic Edwardian-style home perched on a slope and brushed with a coat of periwinkle blue. Everything about the home is classic San Francisco—except its price. 

For a mere $488,000, the home can be yours. It’s worth $1.8 million. You just can’t enter it until 2053. 

Most local media coverage has focused on the price of the home, but behind the bargain is the story of a family feud over money and property rights.

Sandra Lee, 83, is the home’s current tenant, along with her 66-year-old daughter, Cheryl Lee. The homeowner is Sandra’s son, Todd Lee, who listed the home as-is, meaning whoever buys the home will be his mother’s landlord.

Sandra’s parents—Florence and Kenneth Goo—bought the house in the 1970s for $52,000 and lived there until they died in the home in 2006 and 2018. The three-bedroom home, built in 1924, features a driveway, one bathroom—and one “unwarranted and maybe illegal half bathroom.” It also has a garage and a fenced-in backyard. 

“We had a large family,” said Sandra. “Now we’re destroyed.” 

The image shows a street lined with tan, multi-story buildings featuring multiple large windows. There are trees, cars, and a white truck on the street.
The Russian Hill home was built in 1924 and features three bedrooms, a driveway, one bathroom—and one “unwarranted and maybe illegal half bathroom.” | Source: Sam Mondros/The Standard

Sandra told The Standard Friday that if she had it her way, the home would not be for sale and that her son, Todd Lee and her brother, Cedric Goo, have continued to take advantage of her and her daughter, commandeering her adopted stepfather’s trust, fabricating lawyer fees and listing the home for sale while she lives in it. Todd and Cedric did not respond to multiple requests for comment. 

Through a lease that she said was written in secret by her stepfather, Kenneth, in 2018, Sandra is granted long-term rent rate restrictions at $416.67, in addition to paying her own utilities until 2053. 

“If it wasn’t for the lease that [my son] didn’t know about that was made in 2018, I don’t know where we’d be,” she said. “It’s unfathomable, the deception, the betrayal—this is my son doing this to me.”