Weekend Opens (1/16-1/17/16)

By Dave Fratello | January 16th, 2016

Seems like we just got back from break, and now everyone is gone again. 

Ah, but if you're out of town, you're missing a good new run of new listings in Manhattan Beach. Inventory is still in the low 60s, like the temperatures, but there's more to see.

We've got a more extensive open-house video this week, too, right below:

Some mobile users and email subscribers will need to use this link to view the video.

To plan your open-house tours for this week, use MB Confidential's new online list of Manhattan Beach open houses (it's mobile-friendly!). This link always appears in our weekly wrapups and on the main front page, under "Open Houses."

And don't forget, when previewing homes here on MB Confidential, you can click "Open All Images" right above the main listing photo to get immediate display of all the listing photos at once.

Sand Section

2803 Alma Avenue Manhattan Beach CA2803 Alma (3br/4ba, 2000 sqft.) is a 2005 Mediterreanean TH with some views down the 28th Place alley. The floorplan is absolutely typical – enter on the middle level with a small foyer and two bedrooms (including master). Go down for one more bedroom, and common areas are up top – wide open, newer, nice.

The home shows nicely, albeit with some rough edges, like flooring that needs a new coat of stain. More from the official description:

"Gorgeous beach home in the heart of Manhattan Beach with nice ocean and sunset views. Located on a sun drenched corner lot, this ... Spanish-Revival inspired home blends style, quality, location, and functionality. The kitchen has top of the line stainless appliances, mahogany butcher block center island, high-end cabinetry, and plenty of work space. Take in the great ocean views from one of two west facing decks. One-of-a-kind front 'yard' offers that sought after ground level outdoor space that is so coveted in the sand section. 3+ car parking, lush/mature landscaping, and fantastic curb appeal..."

Worth noting: 

* This one was purchased new in '05 for $1.950M.

* Attempts to sell at a loss in '09 and '12 failed. (Good news, there. You can win for losing.)

* A decent, recent comp is a neighbor at 319 28th Place (3br/4ba, 2000 sqft.) at $2.380M in March 2015; a dragging comp would be another Mediterranean corner TH at 3101 Alma (3br/4ba, 1870 sqft.) at $2.150M in April 2015.

2803 Alma starts at $2.549M and is open Sat. and Sun. from 1-4pm.

232 20th (5br/5ba, 4550 sqft.) offers a west-of-Highland location (well, on Highland), some very substantial views from the top-floor living spaces and – how to put this – your chance to modernize it to your heart's content.

As it stands, this home offers a conventional 3-story Sand Section layout, with 4br on the mid-level, one br plus a den (and 4-car parking!) on the lowest level, and mostly wide-open living spaces up top.

There were updates at points after the 2001 build, but to really dial it up to modern standards across the board will take a little effort.

Worth noting: A dated Mediterranean nearby at 224 19th (5br/5ba, 4300 sqft.) just closed at year-end for $5.650M. Obviously, that one was set down off of Highland, but we believe most buyers viewed 19th as a modernization project, also.

From the official description: "This Fabulous 2001 Contemporary Walk Street home, located in the Manhattan Beach Downtown Sand section, offers Location, Space, Storage and Amazing White Water and Malibu Views... [T]his 3-level, open floor plan home has been upgraded in 2013, and offers ... a 3-stop elevator, new central air conditioning, a gourmet kitchen with a over-sized granite island and high-end Viking appliances, centralize[d] audio system, Cat5 wiring and a security camera system. Every SoCal Night you’ll be enjoying sunsets from your master suite balcony, and unwinding in your luxurious White Marble Steam Shower or over-sized Jacuzzi Tub."

232 20th starts at $5.495M and is open Sun. from 1-4pm. 

Hill Section

873 9th Street Manhattan Beach CA873 9th (5br/5ba, 5100 sqft.) has a new price and a new DOM clock going for it, thanks to a recent New Year's re-list. But it's got something else going for it that it didn't have when this new construx debuted last year: Staging which helps to make some sense out of the layout. More from the official description:

"Brand new 'Beach Plantation' in the heart of the Hill section. This large, luxurious home ... features an open reverse floor plan to take advantage of the sweeping city and mountain views. There are vaulted beamed ceilings and white oak engineered hardwood floors. The top floor includes a refrigerated wine room, a guest/office suite and a gourmet kitchen with a center island, top-of-the-line appliances (Wolf, Subzero, Bosch), two stainless steel sinks, a walk-in pantry and countertops made of carrara marble (center island) and quartz... There is a great 'flow' for entertaining, highlighted by two sets of disappearing glass doors from the kitchen and the family room, both of which open onto the large view deck with a BBQ island paneled in Brazilian walnut. The remaining four bedrooms occupy the first floor, which also includes a media room and offers direct access to the covered patio with firepit and to the spacious backyard."

873 9th is now at $4.699M and is open Sun. from 2-4pm.

Tree Section

3525 Oak Avenue Manhattan Beach CA3525 Oak (3br/2ba, 1200 sqft.) achieves quite a feat, rendering its location across from a hotel all but forgotten. Step in to this charmingly remodeled home with open living spaces, and it is hard not to be taken in.

The master stroke is probably the conversion of any front "yard" into a fully fenced-in patio. You enter up front through this welcoming space and Oak Ave. fades quickly away.

The original home here had one decent-sized bedroom and a smaller one, and now they've added a master in back with access to the grassy backyard.

The kitchen, dining and living rooms show nice attention to detail and a beachy style.

As so-called "starter homes" go, at this price point, it's hard to find much comparable to this charmer (barely) west of Sepulveda.

This one is priced essentially the same as the much larger, but less fully redone, neighbor at 3513 Oak (3br/2ba, 1775 sqft.), now at $1.395M (and sporting a somewhat misleading 2 DOM, with 97 true Days on Market but a recent bogus re-list).

3525 Oak starts at $1.389M and is open Sat. & Sun. 1-4pm.

794 27th Street Manhattan Beach CA794 27th (5br/4ba, 3075 sqft.) is a fun, custom Asian modern that suffered a bit last year on the market. Obviously overpriced at $3.290M to begin, the listing gradually cut about $500K over 8 months, but it wasn't enough and wasn't fast enough.

This one needs just the right buyer for the unique style and layout, plus a willingness to overlook the busy corner with Pacific Ave. that's just off the front "yard." Typically, you solve those sorts of issues with price. More from the official description:

"Custom designed Contemporary Pacific Rim ... Masterpiece in Tree Section of Manhattan Beach! ... Showcasing acid etched concrete flooring, Barrel vaulted ceilings, brushed aluminum window sills, inverted baseboards, fine wood finishes & high Clearstory windows. Gourmet kitchen showcases stainless steel appliances granite countertops plus custom barrel soffit with lighting, attached to the kitchen is butler's pantry & wine fridge. Family room features vaulted ceilings, fireplace & custom French doors with beautiful wood framed glass looking onto private front yard..."

794 27th starts (with a new agent now) at $2.750M and is open Sun. from 1-4pm. 

3113 Walnut Avenue Manhattan Beach CA3113 Walnut (5br/5ba, 3325 sqft.) is a taut, splendid, modern new home in the northeast portion of the Tree Section. After compiling some time on market late last year, the listing took a break and is back now.

Besides the major style pluses and current floorplan (great room in back), one thing that really got our attention was the fact that each of the bedrooms upstairs was of more than adequate size. So often, under the new construction rules, a 5br/3300-ish sqft. house will have some small bedrooms – somehow, not a problem here.

There's no formal name for this home's style yet – it quotes from Spanish outside and is slick and modern inside, with all of today's materials (wide-plank oak flooring, white marble counters, even a built-in firepit in the backyard). But you don't have to label something to like it. This one has a lot going for it. More from the official description:

"[A] unique blending of modern and traditional design and materials... This home's light filled and open floor plan is perfect for entertaining with the formal dining room, gourmet kitchen and great room leading to an expansive & private outdoor living space that boasts a 12' high stacked ledger stone wall, built in fire feature, and sunken living room with imported European limestone flooring. The Chef's kitchen features a carrara marble [yes!] center island, top of the line Thermador appliances and dual zoned wine cooler. The second level has 4 bedrooms with an open study/entertainment loft. The tranquil master suite with private balcony looks onto the lushly landscaped back yard..."

3113 Walnut returns at $3.280M and is open Sat. and Sun. from 1-4pm.

East MB

1641 21st Street Manhattan Beach CA1641 21st (3br/1ba, 1000 sqft.) is another example of what a "starter home" can be in Manhattan Beach at around $1.3 million.

This little 1950s original is utterly recognizable if you know the area. Many of these still exist in some form. (Aging, remodeled, rented out, etc.) In this case, 1641 21st is absolutely buttoned up, everything that it can possibly be, with charming style and paint colors, among other things... Everything that it can be while still 1000 sqft. and with everyone sharing one small bathroom.

From the official description:

"[This] remodeled home features an open concept, connecting the upgraded kitchen with granite countertops and stainless steel appliances to the quaint dining area and light, bright living room. This home features recessed lighting, dark oak hardwood floors throughout, central heating, dual pane windows, crown molding, ceiling fans in all bedrooms, wood blinds, Nest thermostat and a laundry room with storage. There is plenty of outdoor space for entertaining with a large brick patio and spacious yard with an 18’ mature privacy hedge in the back. This home has fantastic curb appeal with drought-friendly landscaping features, a 2-car garage & driveway."

As one point of comparison, just look what happened at the same address a stone's throw away: 1641 23rd (3br/1ba, 1125 sqft.), which lacks the updates and style and is notably closer to Marine Ave., just closed for $1.260M.

1641 21st starts at $1.349M and is open Sat. and Sun. from 1-4pm.

1540 2nd Street Manhattan Beach CA1540 2nd (4br/3ba, 2700 sqft.) is a home we've seen repeatedly, it seems, over the past 3+ years. We've shown it as a rental, last year as a listing for sale. Right now, it looks better than ever, thanks to the newest owners giving it a heavy dose of loving attention just about everyplace that the home needed it.

There is the matter of an unusual upside-down layout, with the master and 2 other bedrooms downstairs. The top floor has high cathedral ceilings and another bedroom. Fortunately, the kitchen has been totally remodeled since you last saw this one (if you did). More from the official description:

"Coastal Living Magazine perfect... [This] home offers everything a home should have. Large Master suite with walk in closet and master bathroom, 2 living areas plus formal dining area, gourmet lovers kitchen with direct access to family room which is perfect for entertaining. High vaulted ceilings throughout the main floor living areas make this home feel very big and bright with sunshine. South facing back yard is perfect for outdoor living, and is sun drenched. Do not miss the bonus room off garage which is a perfect home gym or media room... Hardwood floors throughout with 2 fireplaces, and a large patio make for great entertaining and gardening."

1540 2nd sold 11 months ago for $1.715M. (Here's that past sale link.)

Now 1540 2nd, remodeled, starts at $1.899M and is open Sat. and Sun. from 2-4pm.

907 Harkness Street Manhattan Beach CA907 Harkness (5br/4ba, 3435 sqft.) is a 2006-built home with nods to the Craftsman style.

With warm cherry wood floors and the use of attractive slate tile where you might often find travertine – such as in the master bath – there are pleasant departures from the typical spec house.

We also liked the modest tweak to the downstairs layout, placing a butler's pantry back behind the kitchen off the dining area.

The backyard is modest in size, given the 5000 sqft. lot, and faces west for sunny afternoons. Views from the master upstairs go over rooftops and treetops to the west.

Seeing this one on the map, we were struck by how far east it is, but Harkness in this area is a quiet suburban street with its own positives. More about the home from the official description:

"Wonderful Sunny west facing backyard ideally set up for playing and entertaining. Great floor plan with living, dining, family rooms and kitchen all open to each other. Awesome kitchen with large center island, granite, high end appliances, dining nook, breakfast bar, butlers pantry and lots of storage. 20ft high living room ceilings, Brazilian cherry hardwood floors, huge master suite with dual walk in closets, upstairs sitting area, all 4 bedrooms upstairs and more classic details."

907 Harkness recently cut $50K to $2.249M and is open Sun. 1-4pm.

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