Not Slowing West of Sepulveda

By Dave Fratello | November 29th, 2010
If you hear about a sales slowdown anywhere, don't blame MB west of Sepulveda. Here we're pulling more than our weight, according to a new look at sales pace data.

Yesterday at MBC we touched on sales data for the 4-month period of July 1-Oct. 31, roughly the period in which you'd see all Summer sales close.

In researching sales data for a newspaper column, we had found that 3 separate regions of the South Bay had seen significant slowdowns in sales in 2010 for this period, compared to 2009 and some of the other years dating back to 2006.

For instance, the 3 beach cities combined saw 70 fewer sales of SFRs and townhomes/condos this year than in 2009, the same number drop as Torrance saw and quite a bit more than the 30 fewer sales this year in PV.

But as that column notes, if you looked inside the data, PV and the beach cities mostly saw those drops in townhome and condo sales. In fact, the beach cities saw 6 more SFR sales in 2010 than in 2009. (From 229 to 235 year-over-year.) Only Torrance saw a meaningful decline in SFR sales. It seemed that entry-level housing was more greatly affected than pricier SFRs.

So now let's slice and dice the data for Manhattan Beach.

West of Highway 1, MB saw more sales of SFRs and THs/condos this year than last. (Click chart to enlarge.)

The uptick in TH sales (+2) is easy to disregard – in fact the number of sales seems nearly uniform across the 5 years we're looking at here.

But the jump in SFR sales in this period from 62 to 75 this year is noteworthy. An extra 13 SFR sales this year put us up 21% over 2009, and was the best July-October period since the last somewhat bubbly year of 2006.

East of Sepulveda, the picture isn't quite so rosy.

There were year- over-year drops in closed sales for both THs/condos and SFRs. (Click chart to enlarge.)

With 34 SFR sales closing in 2010, this was the worst of the 5 years we're looking at, though not by much. There's little variation year-over-year in general.

After these modest dips in sales, East MB looked a bit more like some of the other South Bay submarkets we examined that saw the sales pace slow this year.

However, this year's net drop of 12 closed sales east of the highway failed to cancel out the overall +15 boost west of Sepulveda, making July-October 2010 better – citywide – than any year since 2006.

While we're geeking out, we'll point out that the sales total for all SFRs and THs/condos in all of MB hit 135 during this year's July-October period, just above the 132 last year and 131 in 2007, well above the 121 in 2008, but a far cry from the 171 seen in 2006.

As we approach year-end, 2010 is preserving the hopes ignited as early as February that this would be a recovery year after 2 and a half years of more trying times.

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