Repricing When Starting Over

By Dave Fratello | July 22nd, 2021

Having a listing that doesn't sell stresses everyone out.

Assuming that a seller truly intended to sell, a failure means hopes and plans dashed.

We won't ask you to have too much sympathy for real estate brokers, but yeah, it's a knotty set of problems and unpleasantness when the buyers just don't come. It's one of the harder aspects of the business to handle.

But sellers do often come back and try again.

We'll discuss a few recent listings that have a bit of history to them.

The first two have chosen to list higher than the prices on their most recent canceled listings.

3207 Crest Drive Manhattan Beach CA3207 Crest (3br/3ba, 1800 sqft.) is a vertical townhome built in the mid-80s, a rear unit with some ocean views and, notably, a spiral staircase.

The home sports some remodeling that appears to date to the 2000s and some other work in the kitchen, in particular, that seems much newer.

The home was offered in 2019 at $2.199M and for a few months of 2020 at $1.995M.

After a bit of refashioning, now it's back at $2.499M, a big markup over both those prior listings.

But y'know, this market is rising incredibly as we speak, so... ?

(Side note: Slight demerit for this part of the listing description: "This home will make you feel like your in an resort seaside village..." That's *you're and "a." Additional head-scratcher points for the 4 listing photos that feature the building from the "front" side on Highland while never showing the approach from Crest, where the address is.)

1603 6th Street Manhattan Beach CA1603 6th (6br/5ba, 5656 sqft.) is a giant 1990-built house on a corner lot with a pool.

There appear to have been a couple of stages of remodeling, some bringing the house up to styles of the early-to-mid 2000s, some more extensive and more current.

There's a lot of space and two master suites (one sleek and contemporary, one more with a feeling of the islands).

Other than the backyard, however, there are no exterior photos, so you won't really know what it looks like till you drive up. (Oh, we're kidding, everyone knows you're going to look it up on Streetview right away.)

The property was listed late last year for $3.650M and drew an offer in November. The escrow didn't work out, however. That listing canceled early this year and returned in June, with a new agent and a new price: $4.199M. (It's down $50K now to $4.149M.)

So the Crest listing was up 25% over its prior try, and this one in East Manhattan launched 15% over its last listing.

It's like everyone is challenging the market to inflate fast enough to meet their expectations. 

Well, not everyone.

333 21st Place Manhattan Beach CA333 21st Place (3br/4ba, 1813 sqft.) is back, but lower.

For a stretch of late 2020 through early 2021, this 2006-build Mediterranean townhome was offered at $2.795M, down to $2.600M.

We were tracking that one closely for business reasons, as the Edge office had a 2007 Mediterranean townhome on the market that could have been seen as competition.

Turns out, 21st Place was overreaching, and as the property came back to market last week, the sellers showed they had understood that.

It's now at $2.450M, basically $250K below their first try.

It's no longer competition for our listing, 320 33rd Place (3br/4ba, 1870 sqft.), which just closed Thursday for $2.480M.

511 Pacific Avenue Manhattan Beach CAAnother recent (and frequent) sight on the MLS that's back is 511 Pacific (5br/9ba, 8000 sqft.), which returned last month at $7.950M.

Not sure if this happens to you, but when that came out, our first reaction was, "Isn't that where it was on price before?"

And, yes.

The property ran 3 months of 2020 at $7.950M.

Also, in late 2016-early 2017, it was at $7.995M, about $200K below a 2015 listing.

And during 2018, there was a try down, down, down at $7.500M.

The four prior listings almost all ran close to 90 days, while this one is 23 days in. Anyone want to take the over/under on another 90-day listing?

More pertinently: Perhaps the market has risen to this level now?

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Business note: We premised this post on the pain of sluggish, or failed, listings.

We feel fortunate not to have extensive experience with unsold listings. Mostly, with good prep, pricing and timing (and great clients!), we've sold listings pretty soon after coming to market.

Of Dave's local listings that have canceled, we looked up some data, and saw that almost all of them did eventually sell with us. Of those that did not, three of the four local sellers that we represented who canceled ultimately decided to stay put and not sell at all.

Two of our most recent listings that were on the MLS that canceled are now among our two most recent sales: 417 27th ($2.679M) and 320 33rd Place ($2.480M).

In each case, we canceled strategically in the Fall and returned in Spring to a better market, at the same prices, getting full price or close to it for both sellers.

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