Monday, January 14, 2008

Manhattan Beach, CA: Home Prices 2005-2007

Manhattan Beach Pier.. January 2008

The Manhattan Beach real estate market has always been contrary.. contrary to logic... to income standards... to investment basics... basically to most yardsticks used to measure property values in other places. We have continued to maintain high prices even as the market has slowed down. The number of sales have decreased, the days on market have increased while prices have only seen slight declines.

The question floating through our Manhattan Beach community is whether or not this will be the year that we see the real estate market move downward or will we continue with minor adjustments and a basically flat market. Buyers are opting for prices moving downward while sellers are hoping to hang on with a flat market or a minimal downturn.

Manhattan Beach and the Beach Cities in general have fared better then many similar communities in Los Angeles County. So far our foreclosure rate is minimal and the hope is to keep it that way. I'll be posting information about the Beach Cities in the next few days.

Manhattan Beach: Home Prices Sold.. 2005-2006 (click on graph to enlarge)

When you review the numbers for each neighborhood over the last three years it's amazing how stable the market has actually been. That may be about to change if the tight credit market continues into most of next year.

The big surprise may be that buyers are going to be fine as most people who want to buy in today's market have to have stable finances, cash for a down payment and good credit. The ones who may wind up in trouble are those who bought with marginal resources. We could also see problems if a recession does materialize. I think we will have a handle on where the Manhattan Beach and the Beach Cities housing market is headed by spring to early summer. If we make it through the next 6 months intact we are likely over the worst.

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