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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.

At 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

At today's prices, you see sellers asking - and buyers paying – as much, or more, for little lots than you would expect to see for an actual livable house.

Look at just a few half lots on the market recently:

209 15th just made a deal with a list price of $2.299M.

The smallish, 2-story house is dated and you have to say the bulk of the value is in the land, all 1345 sqft. of that plot. Despite a busy intersection nearby, they've pulled in a deal fast.

We noted last week that the back unit, the companion half lot to 209 15th, known as 210 15th Place, is pushing for a ton more, listing for $2.889M.

317 11th is new to market, a half lot right on the periphery of downtown Manhattan Beach.

The 1350 sqft. lot sports a small, 2br. house with very decent…

Prime lots in the Tree Section have been hitting $2M and a touch above.

It was only a matter of time before the American Martyrs area asserted itself (again) with an even higher high.

Now the sale of 608 14th has done exactly that.

The dated, 4br, 3000-ish sqft. house is fine, but it's the 5800 sqft. plot of land that's got the real value here.

Specifically, the market said: $2.950M. The sale closed this week.

Call it the American Martyrs neighborhood's first $3-million-dollar lot.

As the listing launched 5 weeks ago in June, they weren't necessarily pushing the ceiling too high. The asking price was $2.7M.

But competition and must-have properties means new, ever-higher prices must be paid.

We can't really find anything like 608 14th in very recent…

Hard to believe, but we're only a few years removed from a time when Manhattan Beach Strand homes & lots dipped to the $5M-$7M range.

From today's vantage point, that's like trying to remember the days of dial-up Internet. (Your blog author here began oh-so-long ago at 110 baud, but that's another story.)

We're in a giddy market now, though, one that escalated almost overnight as waterfront homes in Manhattan Beach became must-have prizes not just for locals, but for big money from around the globe.

This trend isn't reversing in the near term with sales like 304 The Strand.

Yes, there's something special about the region south of the pier, and that's just been proved again with a very quick deal for this home/lot, listed at $14.000M and now in escrow