price cuts

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Along with the rule that fewer listings come out over the holidays comes a corollary: The properties that remain on the market probably mean to sell.

For this reason, the holiday season can be a heck of shopping season for real estate. Fewer buyers, more motivated sellers. What a rare alignment. Especially here in 2013.

You start to see this shift in the market with public price cuts. A new chop Tuesday morning at 3603 Manhattan Ave. (3br/4ba, 1900 sq. ft.) seems to examplify the change.

This is a mid-90s Spanish style TH fairly near Rosecrans offering what are described as "Fully Executive Ocean Views."

In our prior reviews here at MBC, we've said there were "shooting for something special here, pricewise, at $2.499M."

As a look at the comps suggested,…

We keep hearing talk to the effect that the market in Manhattan Beach is "slowing," but that seems to be either a hope or a fantasy, for the most part.

Look, it's late October – there should be fewer listings and fewer sales, based on seasonal factors alone. But a "slowing" would need to leave a better trail of evidence.

As you recall, our already-light inventory got chopped by 20% within the span of a couple weeks recently, and lots of new offerings continue to draw multiple offers.

So where's this "slowing?"

Look up high at the high end.

We sorted the 47 listings active as of Monday afternoon by their combined days on market (CDOM). That's the total number of days exposed to market, irrespective of any re-listing. (The CDOM "clock" is only reset to zero…

We're watching two higher-priced Tree Section properties that have now made cuts.

Both are aiming near $3M.

What's next for each?

The first is 2009 Palm (4br/5ba, 4050 sq. ft.), a big, custom house, built pre-ZORP in the early 90s, and updated here and there since.

The official listing description leads with the home's obvious assets: "Location & Size do Matter!"

Point being, Palm is a great block, and that's a huge house. Of the location, we said a month ago:

Location is ultimately what sells the house. This is mid-block on one of the Tree Section's prime, quiet streets. John and Palm. Palm and John. They're interchangeable, dream streets. This is a flat section chock full of great homes.

And, yes, that's a lot of square footage. ("Size does matter"…

Two recent sales in the Sand Section teen streets came from very different places, but wound up at the same number: $4.2M.

One was 128 20th (5br/5ba, 4600 sq. ft.), a big structure way down there by the water. It's got this gaping problem: An early-90s style that is so terribly custom that almost no one could readily see what to do with it.

The home is surprisingly dark inside, with lots of walls breaking up the flow, and there's that heavy, heavy use of brick in the construction. That's the starting point to describe what made it difficult.

As we noted in "Tough 20th St. Listings Sell," this one ran a long time in 2010-2011, racking up an incredible 560 DOM in a failed listing. The price back then at launch was $4.450M, and the last time we saw it make a