Close Shaves in the Trees

By Dave Fratello | October 28th, 2008
Several active listings in the Tree Section show the recent deceleration of local home prices.

In some cases, same-house sales will actually show a reversal in the market – the first clear signs of the bubble deflating and pushing prices backward in time.

(As always, click on any highlighted address below for more pics & details via Redfin.)

Not Worth What They Once Were

These are quite obviously tough times to sell, but these 3 listings have recently entered the fray nonetheless, all offered below their recent acquisition prices. These are not really "close shaves," they're taking off layers of skin:
  • 3109 Laurel (pictured) is a little cottage that's officially a short sale. Purchased for $1.375m in April 2006, now priced at $1.199m (-$176k/-13%).
  • 570 36th was purchased for $1.306m just last year (May 2007), now priced at $1.255m(-$51k/-4%), with the added entreaty, "Bring all offers!"
  • 864 14th is new on market this week – purchased for $1.417m in July 2006, now up at $1.358m (-$59k/-4%).

Cutting It Close

These 3 offerings have been around somewhat longer than the 3 above, but aren't priced much above the levels at which they were acquired between 2004-2007.
  • 2700 Pacific (pictured) was purchased well before the local bubble was finished inflating, at $1.695m in May 2004. The sellers tried for $2.099m when they started in May, but the listing is down now to $1.799m, where it has been stuck since July. That's just +$104k/+6% if they get it.
  • 3212 Blanche went for $1.8m in February 2005, but supply of new and newer homes sure looks different today. It's now offered for $1.849m (+$49k/+3%).
  • 2900 Maple was purchased for $2.555m in Feb. 2007 by a builder who intended to raze the decent house, split the double-lot and develop it. That's not happening. Now offered at $2.595m (+$40k/+1.5%)

Not Too Far Up from '05

Finally, we have 3 more current offerings, all purchased in 2005, each of which is up for about $200k more than the sellers paid. All are worth watching because any or all of them might slip down to 2005 prices to get a deal done.
  • 1208 Oak is a nice home with a big location issue – "wrong" side of Oak and no residential neighbors (see "This Home Is an Island"). Sellers paid $1.449m in March 2005, and now request $1.650m (+$201k/+14%).
  • 1400 Elm is a late-90s home with 5br/4ba and 3100 sq. ft. It was purchased for $1.7m in May 2005. Sellers tried last year as high as $2.35m. It's now lingering at $1.949m (+$249k/+15%).
  • 751 26th is a newer home for which the current owners paid $2.1m in April 2005, a sizable bump over its price when brand-new in 2001: $1.475m (+$625k/+42%). It is now nearing 100 DOM at $2.3m (+$200k/+9%), where it may be a bit lost in the crowd.


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