Down 22% and Counting

By Dave Fratello | August 11th, 2015

The received wisdom is: It's good to be the third agent.

The idea is that if there's a problem listing, a seller's resistance will be weakened and they might finally be ready for some cold advice by the time the third agent comes in to list the property.

501 Manhattan Avenue Manhattan Beach CAAt 501 Manhattan Ave., the least that can be said is that the third agent has benefited by having the seller make the biggest price cut on the property in 2015.

The property was first listed in November 2014 for a total of 11 days, asking $7.000M.

That wasn't going to happen. The smallish, original duplex is fine but the land value wasn't $7M, and the rental calculations certainly didn't pencil out at that number.

A new agent launched a new listing in 2015, $1M lighter at $5.999M and at a more optimal time, early February. (The Super Bowl "kickoff" to our Spring selling season.)

Still, $6M didn't work out much better than $7M, and after 4+ months, that listing quit. There was never a price cut during that long span.

Here in the Summer, 501 Manhattan came back at the all-but-indistinguishably-different price of $5.995M. A month tolled by with no action.

With a new $475K cut, it's now at "only" $5.475M, and down 22% from its (perhaps whimsical) start price last year.

We can't say whether that's going to get it done.

Everyone's still watching to see where two comparable lots settle out:

235 4th Street Manhattan Beach CA235 4th, in escrow with a list price of $3.999M, is most comparable to 501 Manhattan Ave., inasmuch as it runs along the corner at Highland Ave. (501 Manhattan runs along Manhattan Ave.) Being down closer to the water is worth something for 501, but being on busy Manhattan Ave. could be a ding against it.

229 4th, in escrow with a list price of $5.000M (yes! $1M more next door!), would set some kind of new record for land values in the area if it closes up at or near that asking price. All TBD.

We'll watch those as we see whether this time, 501 Manhattan is really looking to deal.



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