Saturday, September 7, 2013

Redondo Beach Real Estate Pricing: Up and Going Higher!

Doesn't it feel like new listings in North Redondo Beach are slowing down and prices are still on the rise? Sure does to me. Here's what the actual data shows.

For the 15 days since Friday August 23rd, there have been 17 new listings (not entirely bad considering there was a long holiday weekend), 25 properties "pended", ie placed into MLS "backup" or "pending" status, and 22 "sold" meaning that escrow has closed. So, no doubt that properties are going off the market and changing hands faster than the inventory is being replenished. And, as a result, prices continue their march upward because at the end of the day, Real Estate pricing is almost entirely based on supply and demand.

One of the most striking observations that jumped out at me is that 12 of the sold listings closed escrow above the MLS list price (and 4 sold below the list price). Yes, the others sold at the list price. Imagine that!

For those that sold over, it may have been a small increment but the amount that some properties were bid up was staggering.

For example, 2317 Clark Ln Unit A (pictured left) was listed in the MLS by RE/MAX for $699,000 which I thought was just way too low for an (attached) two on a lot 2300 sq ft townhouse in North Redondo Beach even if it is "only" a 3 bedroom. In fact, that was the general response at the broker's open house. There weren't a lot of updates to this standard floorplan (with downstairs bonus that could be a fourth bedroom) home and my expectation was that it would go in the mid $7's which is a pretty good value these days considering that smaller  resale 3 on a lot units are selling for the very high $6's and maybe even above. 2317 Clark sold for $759,000 with multiple offers (of course). That's about 8.5% above list. Wow. But with upgrades, a similar property might sell for closer to $800K today, particularly if it is around Jefferson Elementary.

But it may not actually take 4 bedrooms to get over $800K. 2205 Nelson Unit B was listed for $769,000 and sold for an amazing $820,000. Also attached, 3 bedrooms, about 2300 sq ft.

Speaking of $800,000 that seems to be the new normal for new construction 2013 build 3 on a lot townhomes. I've previously written about the new construction that was listed on Rockefeller Ln and Vanderbilt Ln. The rear C units went for  around $800K. 2220 Vanderbilt Ln Unit C was listed by 3 Leaf Realty Jerry Carew for $799,000 and sold for $805,000. Three bedrooms and 2062 sq ft per the builder. 2409 Rockefeller, which I liked better, was listed by Merit Real Estate Amir Amiri for $779,000 and sold for $790,000. That one was 4 bedrooms and 1903 sq ft. I can think of at least 3 other 3 on a lot projects going up in MLS Area 152 and am sure those will see over $800K as well. But they could go higher because end unit or no common driveway resale 3's may be breaching or surpassing $800K very quickly. Unit A was listed for $779,000 and sold for that price. Also an extremely nice new construction townhouse.

And speaking of new construction, 2021 Gates Ave Unit A, your prototypical "Amir Amiri" detached 2500 4 bedroom 2 on a lot 2013 version sold for the list price of $959,000 with the buyer being represented by Fred Sarhangian of Merit Real Estate who has more or less made a living off of selling Merit Real Estates new construction. More power to him.

In the not brand new but not quite old category, I really liked 2501 Huntington Lane which is a fully detached 2 on a lot townhouse with no common driveway built in 2011. "Beautiful two year old home on corner lot. Free standing two on a lot that feels like a SFR . Lots of open space with a landscaped backyard, patio, and rooftop pergola with fire pit and city view. From the moment you enter this home you will be impressed with the quality that includes hardwood floors, recessed lighting, crown molding, and custom updates. Gourmet kitchen with granite, large center island and Viking stove. Family room is adjacent to kitchen with patio access. The master suite is amazing with a huge walk-in closet, fireplace and impressive master bath. Three additional upstairs bedrooms plus a laundry room. This home is gorgeous from top to bottom."

Even so, it was listed at a tough, ie high, price point for North Redondo Beach coming out on the MLS at $1,225,000 and selling for $1,175,000. About 2800 sq ft, 4 bedrooms and extremely well built. Seller represented by Coldwell Banker and buyer by South Bay Brokers. 

If you are in the market to buy, here's a few things to keep in mind.

As mentioned, inventory remains very light and this is a realty market extremely tilted in favor of sellers. Unfortunately for buyers, that's not likely to change anytime soon.

As buyers have been priced out of either 4 bedroom 2 on a lot townhomes  or Golden Hills Tall and Skinnies, the listing prices of 3 on a lot townhouses  have escalated significantly going up maybe $100K over the past 9 months or so for end units with "C's" outstripping "A's" and no common driveway end units being in particular high demand.

Where the market may not be as forgiving is for "B" units. A few listings have been available in the high $6's, up to $699K, and that seems like a tougher sell right now. For example, 2007 Carnegie Lane Unit B (pictured above) was just listed this week by an out of area broker from Long Beach for $699,000. The townhouse is 1635 sq ft and was updated in 2011 including new kitchen and bathrooms and in August 2013, the association painted and repaired the entire exterior of the property. But it still is a 1988 3 bedroom that is 1635 sq ft per the assessor.  


It's hard to see how they get that price when 2404 Rockefeller Unit B has been on the market for quite a while and was just re-listed hasn't moved at $699K for a number of months. This newer unit built by Powers Development is an immaculately maintained 2004 built 3 on a lot townhome on one of the best blocks of Rockefeller, with new construction all around. Stainless steel appliances with custom kitchen cabinetry and very contemporary styling. 

 By comparison, my listing in the 1800 block of Rockefeller will close escrow for $665K and I had a tough time getting it to appraise. That unit was also considerably remodeled, a little smaller than 1600 sq ft, very bright with extremely high ceilings. The mid high $6's seems to be the price point for B units, but not $700K, yet. The rear "C" units are going for $700K.

If you are wondering how much it is going to cost you to get into a 3 on a lot townhouse, here's my price guide for this week:
  • 3 bedroom C Units $665-745K
  • 3 bedroom A Units $645-735K
  • 3 bedroom B Units $625-675K
Add or subtract for sq ft, age, condition, elementary school, shared or private driveway, or a 4th bedroom and of course location. 

Here's a new listings that caught my attention that I want to see this weekend.


1739 Ford is your standard reverse floorplan Golden Hills Tall and Skinny and is located just a few blocks from the Redondo - Manhattan Beach border. From this location on Ford it is a quick bike ride to the beach in Hermosa and for those hearty enough a long walk. Built in 1999 with 3 bedrooms, 2.5 baths and being a little larger than other houses in the neighborhood, 1739 Ford seems appropriately priced today at $875,000 with comps to support that price. For example 1536 Goodman Ave in the Redondo Beach Golden Hills just closed escrow for $885,000 on August 20th. That house was a very similar Tall & Skinny built in 1994 and also in good shape. 1624 Speyer which was priced at $849K sold for $866K. It was considerably older (1982) with a standard floorplan (all bedrooms up) but close to Jefferson Elementary.

And here's some other open houses you may want to check out August 7th ans 8th in North Redondo Beach, CA 90278.


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