Big Rewinds From '05 Prices

By Dave Fratello June 24th, 2011.

Two recent Tree Section sales were significant setbacks for the sellers, at big discounts over their 2005 acquisition prices.

2916 Palm (5br/4ba, 3425 sq. ft.) is a home we've called "a splendid, higher-end Cape Cod in a nice, if B or B+, location."

At first it was offered in March at $3.6m, with the next-door lot (2912 Palm) included. The notion was that someone might knock down the rental home there and make it a yard for a double-lot "estate" on Palm. This was met by giggles and raspberries. Within 10 days, the Cape Cod alone was offered for $2.199m, which we considered a pretty nifty deal at the time.

Turned out, with a seller moving to take a new job elsewhere, the price kept pushing down and the property was marketed aggressively as a bargain to be had. In "Dealing on Palm," MBC noted the "aggressive push" to $2.099m. That price found a buyer, and the home has now closed for $2.075m. This closed price lines up pretty well with several comparable homes that sold recently:

  • 2504 Pine (5br/5ba, 3600 sq. ft., 4480 sq. ft. lot) at $1.979m;  
  • 3212 Maple (5br/5ba, 3440 sq. ft., 4640 sq. ft. lot) at $2.100m; and
  • 757 30th (5br/4ba, 3350 sq. ft., 4800 sq. ft. lot) at $2.125m.
In the end, because 2916 Palm traded for $2.499m new in late 2005,  this year's discount was -$424k (-17%) from there. But if 17% seems like a big rewind, hold on a moment. We'll take you to 2304 Poinsettia.

Worth noting: 2916 Palm is one of 3 Cape Cods on the block built by a builder whose work often commands a premium. It's now the second to unload for a major discount after being purchased new.

The others on the block are 2701 Palm (5br/5ba, 3300 sq. ft.) and 2705 Palm (same size, but no info on Redfin), both of which sold new in June 2008. 2701 fetched the astonishing price of $2.749m, while 2705 went for $2.587, also pretty stunning. In 2009, the owners of 2705 needed to get out, and sold for $2.250m (-$337k/-13%). If you're at 2701 right now, what are you thinking about your present value?

2304 Poinsettia (5br/5ba, 3350 sq. ft.) is a 2002 build that, while somewhat familiar in design, is sharper than most spec builds of the early oughts and packs a few surprises.

MBC particularly liked the basement media room and one kid's bedroom upstairs that features windows on 3 sides, and is accessed by a little step-up to double doors. As we said in an open-house review, it seemed fitting "for a prince or princess."

This one was offered as a short sale here in 2011, but initially they were trying to recover as much value as they could.

2304 Poinsettia had sold new in July 2002 for $1.679m, and was resold in February 2005 for more than $600k on top of that, at $2.300m (+35% in 3 years... who said it was a bubble?).

Poinsettia began at $1.988m, trickled down to $1.880m and found a buyer. But what a deal that buyer cut: The sale price: $1.700m, pretty much back to the 2002 acquisition price, and a 26% markdown from the 2005 price.

As just one touchpoint, Poinsettia struck us as somewhat similar to 1812 Elm (4br/3ba, 3050 sq. ft.), an elegant custom build that is 300 sq. ft. smaller, which went for $1.8m in March, and $587/PSF compared to Poinsettia's $506/PSF.

Other interesting comparisons: 1809 Walnut (5br/5ba, 3125 sq. ft.) at $1.775m in January, and 2509 Palm (5br/5ba, 3150 sq. ft.) at $1.7m in March, both with substantially higher PPSFs ($540/PSF and $570/PSF).

In all, a pretty sharp deal at Poinsettia in a distress-sale situation, and quite a hit to the lenders.

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