Recent Median Price Growth, and Drop, for Manhattan Beach

The median home price in Manhattan Beach is back under $3.000M, after two years somewhat over that mark. The city ended 2023 with a median price of $2.800M

When we first began to see a substantial drop in the median price developing in 2023, we reported that several times here, starting in August. We were a bit shocked at the end of November to report that the local median home price was down 12% in 12 months.

It wasn't down quite 12% by year-end, but rather 10.7% year-over-year, from $3.137M to $2.800M. (See chart at the bottom of this post for more years' worth of data.)

Today we're going to start putting these Manhattan Beach median price data in context.

First, let's recall that recent years have been very, very good to Manhattan Beach home prices. Good like a rocket is for an astronaut.

Since we want to see how Manhattan Beach performed recently versus other roughly similar cities, let's first see how well other cities' median price have fared. We'll compare data from the first pre-pandemic year (2019 year-end data) with the year before our own local market's recent drop (2022).

This chart shows all of the median price growth for 2020-2022.


We focused here on the main South Bay markets, and some comparable luxury markets of Los Angeles County. 

Hey hey, good job, M.B.!

Your 33% median home price increase (2019-22) is good for a third-place tie with Redondo Beach.

Why, that's nearly twice as good as those snooty folks in Beverly Hills saw (17%), better than San Marino (23%) and waaaaay better than Brentwood (15%). Take that, bigwigs!

Second place was taken not by a city, but by a broadly defined region, the Palos Verdes Area, with a jump of 41%. (Please excuse the slight apples-to-oranges flavor of this comparison.)

At the top of the top: Pacific Palisades with a 55% jump in median home prices over the full 3-year span.

For more context, let's take a look at some coastal Orange County cities:


OK, O.C., that's impressive. 

Every single O.C. city we looked up outperformed Manhattan Beach over this period of time.

Heck, Huntington Beach was the sluggish one on this list, and it had a 40% jump in the city's median price.

Three cities (Laguna Beach, Dana Point and San Clemente) outperformed the L.A. county champion, Pacific Palisades, with jumps of 58-62%. Yowza.

Now, it's true, San Clemente and Dana both have substantially lower median prices, both close to $1.500M at the end of 2022. But Laguna, Newport and CDM were all near or over $3.000M, and they all crushed it, too. 

What we're focusing on here is the trend. How did each city do, compared with its own data?

Now, we already know that Manhattan Beach came down a peg in 2023. Who else?

Here's all of the cities together:



Three of the high-flying cities in 2019-22 took large hits to their median prices.

And MB had the greatest year-over-year drop, with that -10.7%.

Our friends in the Palisades were close behind, with a 10.3% drop.

Laguna Beach was down "just" 5.7%, which at least rates as an improvement over where the city stood at the end of November 2023 (-10.0%), when we first mentioned that Laguna prices were sagging.

Six cities were nearly flat, ranging from Newport at +1.5% to San Marino at -0.7%.

Hermosa gained 2.3%, while PV lost 2.3%.

Encino (Encino?!) opened a can of propellant and lit it on fire, jumping 18.1% year over year. (Worth noting: The median for Encino single-family homes dropped 4.2%, even while its overall market rose.)

Brentwood, which saw the most sluggish appreciation from 2019-22, came in a respectable 2nd place, gaining 5.7% in a year that was mixed, at best, for others.

Reasons for Median Price Changes

We're looking at that gnarly median price drop and wondering why Manhattan Beach doesn't really feel like it suffered.

Fundamentally, it just doesn't feel like homes got a lot cheaper in 2023.

In our analysis of similar data through November last year, we noted that the mix of sales in this area had changed somewhat in 2023. Condos and townhomes were a much lower share of sales, as were homes priced from $3M to $6M. Meantime, sales below $3M and over $6M were more typical, on a percentage basis.

That "missing middle" of sales $3M-$6M is the best mathematical explanation for why the market's median price moved down. But was that due to low inventory at that price point, or softness in prices?

We'll come back to that as part of our data series.

Below is our promised chart of historical median prices, with the past year's drop noted.



Nerdy notes:

Chart data comes from the California Regional Multiple Listing Service, Inc., InfoSparks © 2024 ShowingTime.

All charts custom crafted by Dave Fratello for MB Confidential, and copyrighted.

Please see our blog disclaimer.

Listings presented above are supplied via the MLS and are brokered by a variety of agents and firms, not Dave Fratello or Edge Real Estate Agency, unless so stated with the listing. Images and links to properties above lead to a full MLS display of information, including home details, lot size, all photos, and listing broker and agent information and contact information.

Based on information from California Regional Multiple Listing Service, Inc. as of July 18th, 2024 at 7:55am PDT. This information is for your personal, non-commercial use and may not be used for any purpose other than to identify prospective properties you may be interested in purchasing. Display of MLS data is usually deemed reliable but is NOT guaranteed accurate by the MLS. Buyers are responsible for verifying the accuracy of all information and should investigate the data themselves or retain appropriate professionals. Information from sources other than the Listing Agent may have been included in the MLS data. Unless otherwise specified in writing, Broker/Agent has not and will not verify any information obtained from other sources. The Broker/Agent providing the information contained herein may or may not have been the Listing and/or Selling Agent.