Monday, June 23, 2008
Manhattan Beach Real Estate: The Tale of a Sale...
3612 Poinsettia Manhattan Beach
In the last few months I've written posts on Starter Homes in Manhattan Beach , Prices not crashing .... no kidding and buyers and sellers Thinking Outside the Box along with a number of other posts on Manhattan Beach real estate. These posts were about the market in general and often about my listing on 3612 Poinsettia in particular. Many who commented on these posts blasted me on everything from home prices in Manhattan Beach to my general lack of knowledge about the declining real estate market. The bottom was going to fall out of the local housing market and Poinsettia was wildly overpriced at $849,000.
But a funny thing happened a month ago. Suddenly 3612 Poinsettia was not the wallflower at the prom. Poinsettia was on the short list for Prom Queen. The property was being shown many times every day. Not only did we wind up with multiple offers but it went within a matter of days and I had to turn away of number of people who wanted to make offers. I won't release the sales price until the house closes escrow in July but I will share a bit about the sale.
First the deal is very solid with the buyers having a huge down payment well in excess of the standard 20%. The agreed price is very close to full price. The buyers have released all contingencies. I'm still receiving calls from people who want to make an offer if it falls out of escrow and are not blinking when I tell them they have to look at full price or more. People are now making comments about what a great little home it is and how lovely and private the yard is compared to many others in the same price range.
Buyers who made low ball offers suddenly found themselves wanting a chance to increase their price to whatever we wanted. The buyers who offered the winning bid didn't mess around with multiple low offers. They wanted the house and recognized the value of the property and made their offer accordingly. 3612 Poinsettia went from mouse to Prom Queen in less then a week.
So what's the point of this little tale? It's pretty simple.. you have to know what is happening in your local market. The buyers who lost on this home were those who paid too much attention to what was happening in markets outside the Beach Cities and Manhattan Beach. The buyers are local people. They grew up here. They are going to live in this house and make changes as their life changes. They bought the home they could afford in the location they wanted. They bought an entry level home that they will turn into the home of their dreams over time. They absolutely love this home. In 5-7 years they will be considered "lucky" to have bought at such a cheap price.
Starter homes that were scoffed at 3 months ago as overpriced are quietly selling. Smart buyers are taking advantage of rates that are still on the low side and sellers who are pricing homes to sell. One by one these homes are moving as buyers begin to realize that Manhattan Beach and the Beach Cities are some of the best places to live in Los Angeles County.
This doesn't mean you should buy a home if you are not ready to buy. What it does mean is that if you are financially stable and are planning to buy in the next few months you might want to take a look at what is happening in the local city where you want to live. There are good prices on a lot of property in Manhattan, Hermosa, Redondo and El Segundo.
7/12/2008 UPDATE: Poinsettia has new owners. The new owners are a delightful couple and I know all the neighbors will welcome them to the street. The sales price was $849,000 with a small amount credited toward the buyer's closing costs. Up to Friday 7/11/2008 when the property closed escrow I was still receiving calls from buyers who wre hoping it would fall out of escrow.