The Tree Section at $2.0-$2.6M

By Dave Fratello | April 7th, 2015

Here's a quick look at what your typical family is finding in the Manhattan Beach Tree Section this year.

If your budget is around $2.5M or lower, the briefing below is one way to assess what your money might buy.

Here are the past 6 months' worth of sales (including new escrows) on all of the 13 listings priced between $2.0-$2.6M, sorted by highest price to lowest price:

1308 Walnut Avenue Manhattan Beach CA1308 Walnut (5br/4ba, 3275 sq. ft.) is a 1999 Cape Cod that has gotten a good round of updates, particularly to the kitchen and master. The backyard is built out nicely for outdoor living as well.

The kitchen got a nice upgrade, with island & butlers pantry counters in soap stone with tumbled marble backsplash. The flooring downstairs is primarily hardwood.

Location-wise, it's a decent spot with a very short walk to Pacific School and the lower playing fields (Center Field).

1308 Walnut began at $2.599M and posted a deal this week.

3408 North Poinsettia Avenue Manhattan Beach CA3408 Poinsettia (5br/4ba, 3150 sq. ft.) is a 2000-built (can we say late-90s?) "Venetian villa," according to its 2011 listing, which went nowhere.

No matter, this year, sans the "Venetian" reference, this "stylish villa," which was "impeccably maintained" (not necessarily updated), found a buyer so darn quickly that there hadn't yet been a brokers' open before buyer and seller signed off together.

We recall this one from 2011, as somewhat above average for the time, and featuring a bonus covered room/balcony off the master.

Acquisition price: $2.075M in 2006.

2011 list price: $2.075M (no sale).

2015 list price: $2.599M (immediate deal).

1708 Pine Avenue Manhattan Beach CA1708 Pine (5br/5ba, 3125 sq. ft.) was a custom owner/user build in a very typical Meditteranean style.

After acquiring the lot for $850K in 2009 (yes, a sub-$1M lot), the prior owners set about designing an building, finishing up in 2011.

(Side note: Don't you wonder how many new homes were issued certificates of occupancy in 2010-11 in Manhattan Beach? The planning office was like a ghost town compared to now.) 

A listing for this property ran a while in late 2014 at $2.7M, came back this year with a new agent and closed for $2.575M in February.

3300 Poinsettia Avenue Manhattan Beach CA3300 Poinsettia (5br/5ba, 3430 sq. ft.) is a late-90s Cape Cod that we called an "inspired, spacious family home" in our official listing description. (It was Dave's listing.)

The home featured a somewhat updated kitchen, newer flooring all around the first floor and a terrific "great room" layout with high ceilings and lots of windows opening to the surprisingly large backyard.

The listing took a while to find the right buyers, but once it found the right level, there were multiple offers. The successful buyers went in and did some work to the exterior and roof before moving in.

The sale closed at $2.450M in October 2014.

3613 Walnut Avenue Manhattan Beach CA3613 Walnut (4br/5ba, 3545 sq. ft.) is one of those flips that makes you want to go give someone a sturdy pat on the back.

They took a forlorn, dreary 80s house and gave it a very nice, updated, Cape Cod type style. (Here at MBC we featured the transformation in "Before and After at 3613 Walnut.")

Flippers also have a tendency to shoot the moon in their pricing, especially those who, like this flipper, are from out of area and rarely work with Manhattan Beach real estate. Everyone knew that the start price of $2.699M was never going to happen.

With a recent chop to $2.449M, the listing was beginning to look like a deal (it's all relative), even with the home's close proximity to Rosecrans and the refinery. They've got a new deal there, so we'll see where they end up.

2313 Pine (5br/4ba, 3900 sq. ft.) is a big and flowing early-90s house that wanted some updates.

With its "pre-ZORP" vintage and small yard, the home maxed out on interior square footage in a way that you just won't see again in Manhattan Beach.

Kitchen, baths and flooring are all due for a re-do, but when refreshed, this could be quite a sprawling place. Bonus: There really are effectively 3 levels, with a downstairs den and bedroom in back opening to the backyard. You can't do that anymore, either.

Note: For whatever reason, the original MLS entry was input in such a way as to block internet distribution. Booo to people who don't want internet distribution! So here we're linking to Zillow's version of the listing, which (ironically?) is more accurate than any other website with an MLS feed.

2313 Pine closed for $2.400M in December.

2517 Walnut Avenue Manhattan Beach CA2517 Walnut (5br/4ba, 3200 sq. ft.) is a mid-90s Cape Cod that looked pretty fresh, but maybe hadn't had all the aggressive updates of 1308 Walnut (above).

This one was marketed late last year at $2.499M, had a deal, then didn't.

The closed sale came in at $2.400M in January this year.

839 Marine Avenue Manhattan Beach CA839 Marine (5br/3ba, 3600 sq. ft.) is a 50s original with perhaps 1980s-era additions.

The home is on the MLS in escrow, and was never publicly marketed. Therefore we don't know much about the condition.

Location-wise, this one takes a hit, as it's on a busy part of Marine right near the worst intersection in the South Bay – the 5-way stop at Pacific, Marine and Ardmore. Buyers tend to be savvy, though: They know you can get more house for your money by sacrificing location.

List price on this already-in-escrow property: $2.299M.

1720 Oak Avenue Manhattan Beach CA1720 Oak (4br/4ba, 3470 sq. ft.) had just gotten an overwhelming remodel, inside and out, before coming to market in September 2014 looking all but perfect.

Now, if you're going to sell on the "wrong" side of Oak, getting it perfect is a really good strategy.

Listed at $1.999M, this home drew just about everyone in the market at the time.

Final sale price: $2.227M, basically blowing away the record for Oak Ave., especially the "wrong" (commercial-adjacent) side of the street. (See "New Record on Oak? Yes.")

3012 North Poinsettia Avenue Manhattan Beach CA3012 Poinsettia (4br/3ba, 3150 sq. ft.) is on a very nice corner along one of the nicer blocks in the Tree Section north of Valley.

The home itself had a good amount of classic, traditional charm to it, but also seemed to be asking for substantial updates to the kitchen and baths.

The listing came out in October last year at $2.199M, which seemed (at the time) to be pretty much its maximum, though a little competition drove it up to $2.253M in a sale that closed in December.

2317 Pine Avenue Manhattan Beach CA2317 Pine (4br/3ba, 2600 sq. ft.) is an older home that was added onto and remodeled with a Mediterranean exterior and a very open floorplan inside on the main level,.

The kitchen is on the small side, but open to the living and dining areas. Down some steps out to the backyard, you find a cozy outdoor living area with fireplace, and down more steps, a bonus room that could be a home gym, playroom or smallish home theater.

Upstairs, all 3br are carpeted, with 2 being of moderate size.

Notably, this home is well below the typical size for 4br homes in the Trees at 2600 sq. ft., and a bit quirky. It began at $2.199M and they have a deal now.

3413 Elm Avenue Manhattan Beach CA3413 Elm (4br/4ba, 3400 sq. ft.) was being called a custom "Tuscan" in the listing.

The 1981 build has a step-down formal living room and a kitchen centered along the first floor, opening to a small, paved courtyard in back. There's a small family room off the kitchen as well.

The kitchen is clean and not terribly dated, save for the black appliances.

All 4 bedrooms are upstairs, one quite small, one a spacious suite with its own bath. The master is over the garage and is also large, although the tile work and counters in the master bath (not pictured in the listing) are quite dated.

While the home is clean, the next owner will want to do some updating in just about each room. 

3413 Elm hung around a while, cut to $2.199M and is in escrow now.

2413 John Street Manhattan Beach CA2413 John (4br/2ba, 1900 sq. ft.) boasts a location on a prime block (albeit one door off of Marine) and a decent remodel to its single-level floorplan.

The listing came out at an odd time (mid-December) but still was able to make a deal in relatively short order.

With less than 2000 sq. ft., and a land value quite nearly $2M, this one wound up at $1,135/PSF, fairly high for the Trees, with a closed sale at $2.145M.

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