Always Over Asking?

By Dave Fratello | February 26th, 2015

To judge by the most recent closed sales come in, you'd think no one knows how to price a house anymore.

We've seen markets where nearly every listing price seemed to be an overreach. Today, start prices seem to be literally just the starting points. Consider these very recent closings:

510 23rd Street Manhattan Beach CA 510 23rd (4br/4ba, 3200 sq. ft.) is a 2009-built Spanish in the gaslamp district.

Start Price: $2.699M

Sold Price: $2.826M

Amount Over Asking: +$127K / +4%

Note: That result was different from when the same home debuted back in 2008-09. It ran 7 months on market and sold for 16% under the asking price way-back-when, the year your kindergartner was born.

1901 Lynngrove Drive Manhattan Beach CA1901 Lynngrove (3br/1ba, 1100 sq. ft.) is a mostly original corner-lot cottage in Liberty Village. The home has potential as a remodel, but spec builders were chasing it, too.

Start Price: $1.149M

Sold Price: $1.292M

Amount Over Asking: +$143K / +12%

Note: Our info is that the sellers did not have to pay a buyer's agent commission, making the sale price the equivalent of a $1.325M market sale, and the spread even more impressive: +$176K / +15%.

1540 2nd (4br/3ba, 2840 sq. ft.) is a nice enough remodel with bedrooms down and cathedral-style ceilings upstairs for the living spaces. The street, 2nd St., is fairly busy, as it connects to both Sepulveda and Aviation.

Start Price: $1.679M

Sold Price: $1.715M

Amount Over Asking: +$36K / +2%

2413 John Street Manhattan Beach CA2413 John (4br/2ba, 1900 sq. ft.) is a single-level 1960s homes with some notable upgrades to the kitchen and baths. Location is a bit close to Marine for some tastes.

Start Price: $2.100M

Sold Price: $2.145M

Amount Over Asking: +$45K / +2%

Note: The listing agent also represented the buyer, and may have offered a reduction in commissions, thereby raising the sellers' net to the equivalent of a higher market price.

228 38th Street Manhattan Beach CA228 38th (3br/4ba, 2175 sq. ft.) is new construction in a modern style in El Porto. The precedent for this building and this price north of Rosecrans basically does not exist.

Start Price: $2.600M

Sold Price: $2.800M

Amount Over Asking: +$200K / +8%

Note: The builder began at $2.6M, then raised the price to $2.9M while interest was developing. The final price is a reduction from the increased price, but still higher than start. (Follow?)

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