High/Low Prices of 2010, Trees

By Dave Fratello | January 4th, 2011
We'll now wrap up our coverage of 2010 sales west of Sepulveda with a look at the Tree Section.

The typical Tree Section sale, of course, is in the range of $1.0m-$2.0m or so, but each year's top sales are always outliers.

In 2009, we saw 2 brand-new moderns sell for more than $3.5m – one for $4.55m and one for $3.65m. (See "High/Low Prices of 2009, Trees.")

This year's crop falls somewhat short of those marks, but we did see 4 sales at or above $3m.

Tree Section

Highest Price: 645 12th (5br/6ba, 4750 sq. ft.) is an ornate Mediterranean with ocean views that was new in 2008, first hitting the market in September of that year – though officially it carried a 2009 build date.

The listing ran nearly 600 DOM while only gradually adjusting to find its level. That meant a total drop of $1.199m (-27%) from the lofty start price of $4.499m, down to $3.3m when the deal finally closed in late June.

That's roughly what happened to several spec homes that launched too late in the last cycle, though the sale price was still good enough for top honors this year.

Worth noting: 645 12th earned some negative attention in March 2010 when a new agent re-listed the property with a "Sand Section" coding and a description calling it "MB Sand Section's Best Priced New Home," despite the Tree Section location. (See "The Church in the Sand?") The property was later coded correctly.

12th is also just up the hill slightly from last year's top two sellers.

Honorable Mentions: 644 17th (5br/5ba, 5400 sq. ft.) is a 2003-built home on one of the prime blocks in the Trees, the cul-de-sac block of 17th that ends just over the American Martyrs playing fields.

We called the home "an ornate, custom, tranquil Spanish with great décor as a bonus," with a "kitchen isn't just high-end, it's a showpiece." The back yard/entertaining space also features a fountain, and there are ocean views from the top floor.

The sale price clicked in just a hair below the top honoree at $3.270m, nearly a statistical tie.

768 31st (5br/4ba, 5200 sq. ft.) is new construction on one of the Trees' other signature, great streets. The big Cape Cod may be the last big, special spec home from this past cycle to get built or sold in a top location in the Trees.

31st was first offered in August 2009 at $3.775m, and MBC got wind of the sellers rejecting a near-immediate offer around $3.5m. In May, it closed at $3.2m.

The other sale above $3m was 529 18th ($3.075m); 2603 Palm came close at $2.925m

Lowest Prices: Here we have 2 closed sales that are so close, pricewise, that we'll have them share the crown.

3004 Oak (2br/1ba, 1125 sq. ft.) is a cottage in pretty much original condition, with extra square footage from a living room added to the original house. The location on Oak is among the better parts of that Sepulveda-adjacent street. This one wound up as the literal lowest-priced sale of the year, closing in April at $760k.

3529 Walnut (2br/1ba, 900 sq. ft.) is a small, original 1950s cottage in somewhat tidy shape. It sold for $765k in September. Location is roughly 6 doors off Rosecrans.

Honorable Mention: 716 Rosecrans (3br/1ba, 1150 sq. ft.) roared out of the gates in May seeking $899k for a smallish, dated home with a bigger (5750+ sq. ft.) lot. It sold for more than $100k less at $792k in September, making it the third of 3 Tree Section homes to sell below $800k in the year.

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