ocean views

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On occasion we like to capture and share some of the better ocean views around Manhattan Beach.

This past weekend saw some of the clearest skies of recent weeks, and it was warm, to boot.

So we did what real estate bloggers are supposed to do: Head out to homes that have recently been on the market and check out the views. Enjoy our brief video.


The first panorama in the video was taken from 648 12th St., a 2-story home near downtown up at the top of the hill in the Martyrs area. This one has a roof deck that is really worth heading up to – high above nearly all the neighbors, you can see for miles. The home was listed recently for $2.100M and is in escrow now.

Our second view is from the home at 620 8th St. in the Hill Section. Though lower down

Before this year, do you want to guess how many non-Strand townhomes in Manhattan Beach have sold for more than $3M?

That's $3M+ for a unit that shares a lot and a wall with another.

Before this year: One.

Now, with 611 Bayview coming in at $3.250M, there are two.

And its partner came awfully close. That's 612 Manhattan Ave., the other half of the building, with the sale posting at $2.900M at mid-month.

Put them together, and this little high-end spec project just netted more than $6M.

The lot sure looks like a nice get at $2.2M – that was early 2012.

Before this week, the top non-Strand townhome sale was, surprisingly, from the down year of 2011.

205 27th (3br/3ba, 2870 sq. ft.) is a major, modern remodel of a 70s original on a very favorable lot

Is there a hunger out there for lot sales in Manhattan Beach?

Why, yes. We're seeing a new wave of speculative development get fully under way.

Now would-be owner/user custom builders are competing against spec builders who, traditionally, would not pay as much for a lot. The frictional costs, and inherent risks, for a builder tended to limit their numbers on lot acquisitions. Not so much now, as builders see the upside of an up market.

Last week there were multiple offers targeting the lot at 4101 Crest, where the little cottage is cute but probably unfixable, and the big blue ocean views could really be something with a maxed-out build.

The $999K start price may look interesting in the rear view mirror when the deal wraps up – soon.

Then they'll get…

We've taken a look already at the most notable 2013 sales in the Hill Section. With just 34 total sales up in the hills, the rundown still gave us plenty to cover. (See "High Points of 2013: Hill Section.")

The whole of the Sand Section saw nearly 4 times the sales: 127, including SFRs and townhomes. As always, the top sales are on The Strand and beach-close walkstreets. We'll look at those top-tier sales first in this update.

Strand Sales of the Year

The priciest move-in-ready home in the Sand last year (and MB overall) was 3300 The Strand (5br/5ba, 4750 sq. ft.), a corner-lot home up at the north end of town.

This one was a 2006 build with a forward-looking soft-modern look (called "Zen" in the listing description). The sale price: $10.995M in an