Another Big Reach

By Dave Fratello | November 7th, 2013

This year is full of stories of short-term holds resold for a profit. It's a classic rising-market (bubble?) phenomenon.

One of the boldest is the newest listing to hit the market, 88 Manhattan Ave.

This is a 3br/4ba, 2150 sq. ft. detached TH with a mid-90s build date and much more recent updates that gave it a modern feel.

This one traded back in May 2012 for $1.925M, and is back now offered to the public at $2.650M. That's a markup of $725K and 38% over the acquisition price about 18 months ago.

Interestingly, the same property was offered three times during the slow years of 2009-2011 at prices ranging from $1.899M down to $1.799M. It never could sell. The 2012 sale was arranged off-market.

What matters, of course, is not the history, but the current moment. The sellers clearly have scarcity on their side, and a home with significant assets – good style, great views (we recall seeing the waves break in Hermosa down 35th St. from the top floor), a South End location.

Can they near the $1,229/PSF they're seeking, or take much or all of that $725K profit they're after?

Well, look what the (fairly nearby) neighbors just pulled off at 421 3rd.

That's a 3br/3ba, 2500 sq. ft. single-family home – not so much different, sizewise, from 88 Manhattan Ave. The sleepy 3rd St. location is in more of a family neighborhood and does not offer ocean views.

When 421 3rd hit the market last year, we found it imperfect and – we thought – overpriced at $1.809M. (Just before it came out, Dave had sold a home a block away, representing the buyers of 521 2nd, who succeeded in a bidding war and got a 60s house for $1.370M.)

But 421 3rd drew an immediate bid and sold at asking price in April 2012 (just before 88 Manhattan sold last year). That was then. And the market was only beginning its rise.

Come this year, 421 3rd sold immediately once again, upon hitting the market in August.

The marked-up resale price: $2.250M, a jump of $441K (+24%) in the span of 16 months.

Further up north (still Sand Section), you'll find a couple more very recent examples.

The first is 2411 Vista, a TH with high style that sold for $1.720M in June 2012. They came back to market in October asking $1.925M and made an immediate deal.

It's not sold yet, but that prospective $205K markup over 16 months seems relatively paltry when we look at the South End listings above.

And there's the glam TH at 316 45th with monster ocean views.

That one offers 3br/4ba, 2140 sq. ft. – not much different in profile from 88 Manhattan Ave.

The current (outgoing) owner picked it up for pennies last year – $1.537M as a short sale.

After listing this August for a huge markup ($2.635M), they quickly corrected to $2.375M and made a fairly quick deal.

Thursday the sale posted at $1.995M – far short of those lofty ambitious, but still a very nice markup over one year (+$458K/+30%).

We mentioned this one "Good Work If You Can Get It," we closed out by saying, "They won't make $1 million, but if they sell, they'll do great for a 1-year hold."

Great, yes. $450K will do.

Others will do well, too, it seems, recycling this year what they bought last year.

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UPDATE: This post first went up before the sale closed at 316 45th; it has been updated with the sold price information.

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