ocean views

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Neighbor fights can become nasty. The sale of a couple plots of land needs not get too rough, though.

Two next-door neighbors in Manhattan Beach's Hill Section were on the market side-by-side for a time there, with a victor now emerging.

One took the approach of overpricing and trying to make the market come to them.

That was 500 Pacific. It's a big Hill Section corner lot (11,400 sqft.) with views over wide 5th St. and over homes to the southwest.

From the top rear corner of this lot, a new home should have views of greenbelt treetops, Sand Section rooftops, the Palos Verdes Peninsula and a goodly line of blue from the Pacific.

What a commodity! A big parcel of scarce land in a prestige location with views!

In October, they listed at $6.825M. It was

Who doesn't love a battle of the titans?

The two priciest properties in Manhattan Beach now are both listed over $28 million. And both are (meant to be) priced at land value.

One, 1000 The Strand, is about a 5000 sqft. corner lot right near the pier. In its 5th month on market, the list price remains the same as on Day 1: $28.900M. (See "$29M? Can We Talk?")

For all this time, 1000 The Strand has occupied the field alone. If you want a prime, oversized waterfront lot, this has been your only choice.

Enter the challenger.

2722 The Strand is a true double lot.

Measuring in at 6925 sqft., it's actually a trifle more than the size of two 3300 sqft. Strand lots.

The mid-town location is just past Bruce's Beach Park.

Start price: $28.500M.

Oh, you can…

You want to sell, or maybe have to sell quickly to make something else happen.

So you want to get it done, but not leave money on the table.

Maybe try underpricing. They just did at 881 3rd St. in the Hill Section, and closed a sale in less than a month.

List price: $4.000M.

Sold price: $4.500M.

The tactic might sound scary.

How will you ever know how much money you could have made if you don't put a big, fat price tag on it?

So here's the question: Do you trust the market to work?

Experience seems to show that competition brings you to market level quickly.

We'll often counsel sellers that if we can get 2 or more bidders, we'll find the right price quickly. But that's the goal for pricing near market level.

Price way under market, and it's like…

Take a half lot in sight of downtown and featuring plenty of traffic... what's that worth?

In the case of 209 15th, the answer is $2.401M.

That's a $102K overbid over the list price of $2.299M.

We went looking for comps. Uh-oh, the market seems to have found a way to carve out a new category-specific high with this sale. 

Half lot, west of Highland: $2.4M.

The smallish, 2-story house here (3br/2ba, 1275) is dated and you have to say the bulk of the value is in the land, all 1345 sqft. of that plot.

We can't find a like sale that's even close. $1.7? $1.9? $2.1? Nothing.

There is one very big number from last year that arguably beats the sale at 209 15th: 2401 Manhattan Ave. has a walkstreet frontage and the feel of a 100-block house, albeit with one