Close the Books on 757 30th

Posted by Dave Fratello on Thursday, September 3rd, 2009 at 4:19am.

We're gradually working off the overhang of new construction in the Tree Section.

Nearing 2 years after its launch, 757 30th recently closed for $1.8m.

That means the start price of $2.699m around Thanksgiving 2007 was high by 33% (+$899k) over the eventual sale price. Yes, it did seem a bit out of whack coming out of the gates.

Here's yet another case of new construction slated for a $2m+ price that has come in significantly below $2m. (A list of new-construction closings over the past 6 months is found in MBC's story setting up the pricing poll on 2401 John.)

This slightly-larger-than-average speckie (5br/4ba, 3350 sq. ft.) definitely offered a quiet location on 30th, and a sunny southern orientation along the length of the house. The 4800 sq. ft. lot is oriented wide, but shallow, along 30th, rather than running deep back along a narrow lot, as is typical in the Trees.

Despite the home's good points, there was this curious strike against the location – less-than-beautiful neighboring homes that provided much of the atmosphere. (See one of MBC's least-appreciated stories, "The Wreck Next Door," for more.) There were various other issues with the layout, the tree out front and the difficult-to-navigate driveway, but many issues can be cured with price.

No one made much, if any, money on this one. The lot was acquired for $1.3m in January 2006. By May of that year, construction loans of $1.680m were online. With 3 and a half years of carrying costs, sales commissions and construction costs, we don't see how the $500k difference between lot price and final sale price makes everyone whole.

Of course, a lingering speckie dropping below replacement cost is going to leave a trail behind it.

The loans first went bad in March this year with an NOD.

Later, the bank itself – yes, that once ever-present construction loan source for local speckies – went bad and vaporized.

But this home found a buyer amid the mayhem, and the auction slated for this Summer was successfully postponed, and canceled, as a result. (We mentioned 757 30th as one "foreclosure" apparently "Saved by the Sale" in "More on 'Foreclosures' in MB, Pt. I.")

As we often say in observing these sales, $1.8m is still an impressive price, even if there was no profit in it. Meanwhile the downward trend in new-construction sales prices continues.

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While we're wrapping up one sale on 30th, we'll point to another in the Sand Section.

445 30th (3br/3ba, 2600 sq. ft.), described by MBC as "a pretty sweet and spacious Spanish, an older home with some additions and nice updates," just closed for $1.6m. The deal came together and closed quickly.

As we noted just 6 weeks ago in "Welcome Back," when the newest listing began, the home was first listed in March 2008 at $1.999m, trickling down to $1.795m by July 2008, when it quit.

To simplify, they tried at $2m, then at $1.8m and sold at $1.6m, down 20%.

The closed price now is actually $25k higher than the list price from this July. The PPSF, at $615/PSF, is a good deal for the area – beaten only a couple of times recently by comparable homes.

One superior deal by PPSF shows the perils of timing. Just a few doors down, a much newer, much larger (5br/5ba, 3350 sq. ft.) home at 465 30th sold short for $1.720m, or $513/PSF. That was in late May, after months upon months of trouble and uncertainty – a contrast to the simpler deal this week on the same block of the plateau.
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