Ocean View, One-Third Off

By Dave Fratello | October 27th, 2011
We see trades around town on bubble-era purchases where the drop upon resale is less than 20%. A drop somewhere in the teens seems normal for a 2006-07 purchase resold today, though there are exceptions. Yes, MB is performing better than most markets post-bubble.

So what about a newer home, west of Highland with big ocean views and walkable to MB's "second downtown," El Norte south of Rosecrans?

The short sale at 233 30th (3br/4ba, 2325 sq. ft.) is currently queued up for a one-third drop from '07.

This SFR was almost perfectly timed to hit the market as the bubble popped. First listing: May 2007.

The home was purchased new in Aug. 2007 for $2.250m and used subsequently as a rental/investment property.

Wait, $2.250m? Maybe the bubble hadn't popped yet.

But it surely did later, and that's the problem.

233 30th came back to market in May this year,  4 years after completion, with a big discount from acquisition: $400k, or -18% from 2007. (Start price: $1.849m.)

But that wasn't enough off the top for a home that, while west of Highland, is also on Highland, and for which the degree of the 2007 overpay was almost inexcusable.

The listing came down to $1.629m for a long time before going short. A deal recently posted, but that was short-lived, and now the new come-on price for this shortie is $1.529m.

That's 32% off the '07 acquisition.

At some point this is a compelling deal. Though the SFR is on a half lot and feels much like a TH layout, it's newer, sharp and clean with an excellent kitchen and mostly very nice materials. The views from the master and, of course, up top, are gorgeous and blue. (Disclosure: We have toured the property for a client.)

The extra square footage – at 2325 sq. ft. it's about 300-500 sq. ft. larger than you might expect in a comparable TH – is a bonus, and literally so in a basement bonus room down off of the garage that would make for an excellent media room.

Will the lender actually let it go for $1.529m? That's only a fraction off the loans we see, with most of the drop in value here shaving off the owner's original equity. (Ouch.) There's got to be a chance it will come together.

233 30th mostly finds itself competing against Sand Section THs, of which there are plenty to choose from. (See "Sand TH Bulge.")

For a time, one of those THs was the across-the-street neighbor, 300 30th (4br/4ba, 2525 sq. ft.) which was up and asking for buyers at the same time. It has just recently closed up at $1.615m. That one is an attached TH with the same liability of being directly on Highland. The views at 300 30th are somewhat bigger, on account of the position up the hill a bit more, and its upstairs living space is notably larger.

If we take the PPSF from the sale across the street to 233 30th, you would see it at $1.485m, before adjusting for this or that. (This assumes the listed square footage at 233 30th is accurate.)

Wherever it settles, 233 30th is sure to see a major step down. Not everyone can hold within 20% of their 2007 values, even with big views as a plus.

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