Sunday Opens (4/28)

By Dave Fratello | April 27th, 2013

This past week was disappointing for buyers looking for more choices. No bogus holiday got in the way of new listings, but the recent pace of new offerings just didn't continue.

Has MB lost its "big mo"?

Not in sales, but maybe in new supply. (Yikes, just 37 listings active as of Saturday.)

We've only got reviews of 2 new listings below that both launched this week and have public opens.

There are others open that we've reviewed before, including Dave's listing at 700 27th. Here's hoping you can stop by there and say hi.

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

Tree Section

700 27th (4br/4ba, 3420 sq. ft.) is a Tree Section modern home we've been promoting on MBC and all over the internet for some time. This one had a deal recently, but has come back to market.

If you haven't had the chance to see this truly special space, take some time on Sunday. It's just the second open.

Here's part of the listing description:

Natural light abounds in this warm, open architectural modern home. Terrific location on a sunny, oversized corner lot in the sought-after western part of the Tree Section. Close walk to school and parks, also walkable to town and beach.

This sharp home was designed by an architect as her family residence and built by Michael Lee. It achieves an amazing sense of privacy and seclusion in the heart of a lovely, quiet neighborhood.

There are 3 bedrooms upstairs with a dedicated office; downstairs is a guest room plus living spaces. There is also an inviting, separate 350 sq. ft. office/studio/guest suite across the yard, over the garage. Enjoy the sunny south-facing yard.

700 27th is offered at $2.450M and is open Sunday 1-4pm.

For more and larger photos, see: www.700-27th.com

732 36th (4br/3ba, 1000 sq. ft.) almost could not be a more doll-perfect little cottage, completely modernized, custom painted, perfect and ready for move-in. It's very well done.

But everyone has the same basic question: 4br in 1000 sq. ft.? How does that work?

It works via a guest house. The main house is 1000 sq. ft., plus there's a "large 2 bedroom guest house" (per the listing) built over the garage, beyond the yard. We'll say it's large: There's enough space for a fireplace in a living room between the 2br.

No bedroom among the 4 is large, but you expected that. And one in the main house provides access to the backyard, so it's a little impacted.

This is one of the 5200 sq. ft. street-to-alley lots you'll find along the 30s north of Valley in the Trees. Nice plus: No need for a garage-face house.

This house is tight and the lot – despite the 36th St. location – has some upside if someone wants to start over some day, due its (relatively) large size, street-to-alley orientation and sunny south-facing backyard.

The sale is a probate sale subject, potentially, to an overbid during the court confirmation process. It will be a multiple-offer situation on the first round, and if it were to settle "low," a new bidder could rush into court to bid it up further.

On this one, we're going to pop some popcorn and watch how that two-tiered process plays out here. The end point could really be surprisingly high if you go back to the question of what is up for sale here... 2br and 1000 sq. ft. in the main house on a street that is simply too far north for many buyers. (Not to mention that development potential is minimized as the acquisition cost gets driven up.)

732 36th starts at $1.225M and is open Sun. 2-4pm.

2316 Elm (4br/4ba, 3475 sq. ft.) is one of a crop of 80s homes you'll find around different parts of MB – car houses where people can live, too. We say that because of the unfortunate exterior design that features garages (3 of them) and shucks off the entry to the side of the house.

This remodeled home turns out to be much nicer inside than the outside advertises, so it's worth a tour.

You can't take the 80s completely out of the house, but the improved wood flooring, decent (not all-so-updated) kitchen and more modern touches here and there, like plantation shutters and custom paint, do offer a somewhat convincing transition toward the current era.

New carpet and very well-staged bedrooms upstairs also lend a more modern air to the home. This home struck us as a marvelous example of how some fairly simply updates, well short of an actual modernization, can give a home a nice little shine.

Backyard? There is something, but a patch of grass is slightly uphill and raised above a narrow concrete patio. We'd like to see a fuller commitment to either (a) useable grass or (b) outdoor living.

2316 Elm starts at $1.879M and is open Sun. 1-4pm.

Sand Section

440 5th (4br/5ba, 3070 sq. ft.) is a rare, unique custom build on a corner lot on the family walkstreets in the South End. It sports class and great details around every corner.

The first floor, with the main living spaces, opens fully, via disappearing doors, to the walkstreet. That allows a true indoor-outdoor feel for the main living spaces.

You'll find 3br upstairs, including the master with a thoughtful design on the northeast corner – the are views of very tall, mature pine trees across the street and an array of Hill Section homes to the east, a special asset.

Beneath the main living floor is a spare bedroom plus bath and a good family room.

The lot size here is 2/3rd the usual size at 1800 sq. ft., which means this maxed-out house is smaller at its maxed-out size, just under 3100 sq. ft. But it's enough, and extremely well done.

440 5th St. sold quickly in Aug. 2010 for $2.835M, but that was then, and this is 2013. It's starting $500K higher.

440 5th starts at $3.350M, and is open Sun. 2-4pm.

2904 Highland (3br/4ba, 2300 sq. ft.) is a newer ocean-view TH with lots of bells and whistles, including a great room with big ocean views.

Did we mention ocean views? Yes, yes, yes. The listing boldly declares them to be "[a]bsolutely insane ocean views." Well, this market is getting insane, why shouldn't the views be insane, too?

The townhome itself has familiar qualities for newer construction (2007). Dark hardwood floors, high-quality kitchen, very nice baths and – increasingly a must-have item in 3-story homes – an elevator.

Parking is listed as 2 garage spaces and 4 total, which includes a covered carport area and, no doubt, a slot in the driveway.

2904 Highland was purchased new in June 2007 for $2.0M. These days, we're not supposed to be surprised when people ask 20% more than a bubble-year acquisition price.

2904 Highland starts at $2.399M and is open Sun. 2-4pm.

East MB

1430 3rd (5br/5ba, 4000 sq. ft.) is new construction on a great, low-traffic block tucked away so near to school, and yet so far away. It's a great family-friendly location, and a quality Cape Cod with everything that's "now" beckoning buyers to make it theirs.

A wide-open first floor, plus-sized rooms, smashing, high-end kitchen, great room opening to the backyard, with a great, covered outdoor seating area with heaters. The public spaces are just terrific.

Upstairs, the master will have unobstructed views of downtown LA and the Santa Monica mountains on clear days. (It was foggy when we toured, but we believe that.) The lot is somewhat elevated, helping those views and allowing the huge 3-car garage to be partly buried, limiting its impact on the living spaces.

The start price of $2.695M here is going to make it harder for buyers to say "yes" – even if their hearts scream it – and it does seem to be a price that would set a new precedent. The square footage is actually a tad under 4000 and the lot size, at 6640 sq. ft., is 10% below the "full size" of 7500 sq. ft. that you find in other comparable sales in East MB.

What matters first and foremost, after location, is the build quality and style. And here it looks like all A's.

1430 3rd starts at $2.695M and is open Sun. 2-4pm.

1768 1st (5br/5ba, 3600 sq. ft.) wasn't put out on broker's tours Friday but is listed in the public opens for Sunday.

It's new construction very close to Aviation that we last mentioned in a post referencing several of the "Speedy Speckies." (See "Speedy Specky May Hit $2M," from early April.)

Since we haven't seen the property, we won't offer a review, just a tip that this one's ready for first looks.

1768 1st is listed at $1.999M and is open Sun. 1-4pm.

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