Sunday Opens (12/29)

By Dave Fratello | December 29th, 2013

It's just about time to say goodbye to the year that was.

It's fair to summarize this one as a big one in Manhattan Beach real estate, and as far as we can see now, next year looks to rhyme with 2013, maybe beat it. We'll see.

What we won't see much of this weekend is new listings. There's really just one.

To plan your open-house tours for this week, use MB Confidential's online list of Manhattan Beach open houses (it's mobile-friendly!).

Patience now, the next big wave of offerings is just behind the curtain, getting ready to sneak out before the official kickoff of real estate Spring in early February.

Sand Section

95 Highland Ave. (2br/2ba, 1300 sq. ft.) is part of a smallish set of 2 THs in a charming Spanish style. Location way down south could almost be in Hermosa, but no, not the way the border is drawn.

Here's the headline: A charming, interesting place with ocean peeks, west of Highland, for $1.499M? That almost looks like a Hermosa price. Clearly the 2br and limited interior size limitations are keeping the number down, but it's going to be attractive both for owner-users and, potentially, for investors who might see value in this as a vacation rental.

The home's been redone a few times since its 1980s birth. The kitchen is the most modern, the baths somewhat left behind, maybe wanting another round of remodeling. Flooring is a newer bamboo. The upstairs open floorplan is bright and inviting.

If you know the South End, Highland Ave. down here doesn't have the same stigma that it would in other parts of town. Because Highland stops at Longfellow in Hermosa, it's less useful as a commuter street, so this section gets less traffic. North-south traffic goes to Manhattan Ave. instead.

Why they wanted to put this out in the week between Christmas and New Year's is anyone's guess, but there's no doubt they'd draw more interest in a more normal week. We'll see where it goes.

95 Highland starts at $1.499M and is open Sun. 1-4pm.

Speaking of Spanish THs, we'll make one more mention of 3603 Manhattan Ave. (3br/4ba, 1900 sq. ft.), a mid-90s home fairly near Rosecrans with some updates and big views (currently).

They've always been open recently, even in slow weeks like this one, trying to tell the world, "We're sellers!" So far, it hasn't panned out, but motivated sellers do tend to eventually find their deals.

In our prior reviews here at MBC, we have noted that the home itself does not feel like many TH's we've been in, and that's a clear plus.  The builder brought a slightly different style to this set, some good Spanish accents and limiting the common walls of the 2 units to the backs of the kitchen cabinets upstairs. There's a little open hallway/atrium between the units. Nice touch.

The views are a major selling point, so it's necessary for a buyer to take note of the little 1-story cottage just to the west. If/when that gets built up, not all of this Executive panorama will survive.

The kitchen, upstairs with major views, also has newer appliances and counters. Among the baths, the master bath has gotten the most substantial update, though the white marble plus dark wood – while very now – does not seem very "Spanish."

3603 Manhattan Ave. is at $2.299M and is open Sun. 2-5pm.

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