Small Lots, Big Prices

By Dave Fratello | August 6th, 2015

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 Street Manhattan Beach CA209 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 Street Manhattan Beach CA317 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 updates, but the listing call the plot "undeveloped," pointing to the fact that it's the dirt value driving the price.

Those listings put into context another pending sale.

Much closer to the beach and away from downtown, a 1350 sqft. half lot at 116 24th is pending with a list price of $1.850M. (Update: 116 24th has now closed for $1.916M.)

By comparison, that little plot looks cheap – but we'll see where it settles.

Thinking really big is 2600 Highland. The lot's bigger than a half, at 1750 sqft.

It's also (obviously) right on busy Highland Ave., but not so obviously, it's got unobstructable views across Bruce's Beach Park. Asking price: $3.200M.

That's a recent $200K bump upwards from the April start price of $2.995M.

They're not looking at half lots and so forth as comps: They're looking at the 2 lots – all 1750 sqft. – along Bruce's Beach that all listed recently around $4M and found buyers quickly:

It's no coincidence that all of these lots we're talking about are in the Sand Section. Beach-adjacent property is always going to command top dollar.

But the actual "top" for where those dollars will go seems not yet to be in sight.

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