Weekend Opens (4/10-4/11)

By Dave Fratello | April 10th, 2010
What's the hurry? we sometimes say.

In real estate, sometimes the very best properties really do deserve a little hurry-up. If you fail to bid right away, you might miss it.

Or are we thinking of a different time?

Two of our new opens this week say, literally, that you'd better hurry. (See below.)

We'll start counting the days now. How much of a hurry is everyone in, other than the sellers?

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

Please report back here at MBC on any open houses you visit – what you like, what you don't like, etcetera.

Hill Section

929 Highview (4br/4ba, 3550 sq. ft.) is back on our list this week after a $300k cut to $2.595m (per the Beach Reporter).

It's for lovers of bold, modern style – which isn't everyone, but this example is special. As MBC said in our first teaser for the property in February:
The local architect who custom-designed the home nearly 20 years ago obviously had a forward vision. The exterior remains striking to any passerby, while the interior's sense of height and abundant light and openness keep it all fresh inside.
The current owner, who paid $2.280m in Aug. 2006, also lavished attention on the kitchen & baths in a recent remodel.

All that, plus ocean views.

929 Highview is at $2.595m. Open Sun. 2-5pm.

Sand Section

433 32nd (3br/3ba, 1825 sq. ft.) is our first "hurry-up" listing. As of April 9, it said:
"Hurry! This one won't last!"

So what is this one that is worth hurrying for?

A modest 1970s build, cute, located along 32nd – a pass-through street for Sand Dune Park when (if) it's operating.

Charming, but a must-have at $1.599m

433 32nd is open Sun. 2-4pm.

123 44th (3br/4ba, 1700 sq. ft.) is slowly coming around to the reality that we're not living in 2007 prices, even with the nice little run of sales in the first quarter this year.

Having logged 5 solid months, it's fair to say 44th has missed the rally thus far by being overpriced. As MBC noted in "Tinkering Won't Save It" last November, it was silly to price the home initially at its exact Jan. 2007 acquisition price of $1.490m.

Now it's down to $1.399m – a modest concession, but the beginning, at least, of a dialogue.

The home's a clean, 10-year-old, 100-block SFR with ocean views up in El Porto Norte, and there's a buyer segment that's ready for such a property – without the wishful pricing.

123 44th is open Sun. 1-4pm.

Tree Section

2009 Oak (3br/2ba, 1850 sq. ft.) is utterly charming, a 50s cottage with add-ons and a terrifically stylish Cape Cod remodel.

And while we love the style, we're left hoping for an explanation of this lead-in from the listing:
"2004 Redo by ABC's"Extreme Makeover Home Edition" TV Crew!"
Your blog author scoured the internet and multiple seasons' worth of "Extreme Makeover: Home Edition" to try to find you, dear reader, a link to the episode. Alas, no reference. Best we could find was a suggestion that one owner used to work on the show – which would not be the same as actually having your remodel featured on the show. There's something to be cleared up here.

On any block but Oak, they'd be starting well above the $1.329m that 2009 Oak actually begins at.

But let's face it, once you park in the garage, who's thinking about whether Sepulveda is just a block over, or who's using your block as a cut-through when they need to avoid Hwy. 1?

2009 Oak is open Sat. & Sun. 2-4pm.

3405 Pacific (4br/4ba, 3200 sq. ft.) is a newer (2006) Cape Cod that's got 2 related location issues – busy Pacific plus the sort of refinery proximity that can't be debated or ignored. You can get used to those tall, ugly pipes just to the north, but you can't make them go away.

That said, there are plenty of beautiful homes just a stone's throw from the refinery, so it's not a deal-killer for everyone. After all, once you park in the garage, who's thinking about what's outside and a block away?

Pacific is pretty great inside: bright, comfy and unique in parts. It's easy to leave the outside where it belongs: outside.

The sellers bought at pretty much the peak for the area, March 2007, paying $1.775m then. They now are offering only a modest discount (to start) seeking $1.729m.

Back in 2007, new construction rarely, if ever, sold for less than $2m, so the purchase was at a discount then – but now?

Just a couple doors further toward the refinery, slightly bigger 3413 Pacific (5br/6ba, 3400 sq. ft.) sold short last May for $1.687m – not so far above 3405. Curious.

3405 Pacific is open Sat. & Sun., 1-4pm.

931 17th (6br/5ba, 3425 sq. ft.) is a challenged property in several ways, it seems.

First, there's that exterior, with its hard-on-the-eyes adornments. It just doesn't work.

Second, it's a short sale, owing to a June 2005 purchase for $2.3m. That seems very high even for those go-go days. Loans went bad last year, all the way to a threatened trustee's sale in August (evidently postponed). The home is now offered back to the public at $1.899m (short, as noted above).

The story on 17th brightens somewhat, when you note the location (17th/Walnut) and the interior, which is nicer than some of this builder's early work and well decorated. The upgraded patio with fireplace is a custom touch as well.

Maybe that exterior isn't such a big factor – after all, once you park in the garage, who's thinking about what the outside of the house looks like?

Can buyers wrap their minds around the compromises, and the hassles inherent to shorties? Is the discount steep enough? We may find out soon, as the listing promises:
"[H]urry, this HOME will not last"
That was as of April 7. We'll check back later on this one, too.

931 17th is open Sun. 1-4pm.

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