Weekend Opens (5/16-5/17)

By Dave Fratello | May 16th, 2009
For 50 weeks out of the year, local home tours are free. But often, you get what you pay for.

This weekend is the American Martyrs "Sophisticated Snoop" tour, as many of you who already have your little blue booties at home well know.

Walk-up tickets are $30, open 10am-4pm Sat. & Sun.

Click here for the tour home page, with one pic of each of the 6 tour homes plus the writeups.

If you didn't buy presale tix, drop by any home to pay and begin your tour:
  • 202 Ocean, MB
  • 916 Highview, MB
  • 501 23rd, MB
  • 927 27th, MB
  • 120 33rd, MB
  • 2461 Myrtle, HB
Meanwhile, if you're in the market, or want to keep your $30 for something else (like parking downtown), there are some new options this weekend.

Please note that 864 14th, which is a subject of our current poll, is open Saturday only, 1-4pm.

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

We ask MBC readers who visit the "Sophisticated Snoop" homes, or any open house, to also report back in the comments here. Tell us what you see, what you like and what you don't like.

Hill Section

801 1st (4br/3ba, 2800 sq. ft.) caught Mrs. MBC's eye when they posted signs earlier this week; it's always been a favorite of hers around town. That's probably because of the home's throwback Cape Cod styling – a traditional feel in a home that's just 10 years old.

Turns out the interior is pretty sweet, too, with updates in the important places. The outdoor space you see in the pics is a bit exaggerated by the fisheye lens, but it's something, with this caveat – the home runs along sometimes-busy Ardmore.

Traditional style, some views, nice breezes, updates – with space that's neither too much nor too little. A nice package, starting at $2.095m. (That price is almost exactly double the Dec. 2000 acquisition price of $1.050m.) Open Sat. & Sun. 1-4pm.

929 John (3br/3ba, 1875 sq. ft.) offers a wide-open floorplan with a clean, modern flair. Updated with lots of light and a pool in the sunny corner of the back yard.

The home and lot are smaller than most Hill Section offerings, as is the price: $1.499m. Acquired in June 2003 for $1.189m. Open Sun. 1-4pm.

Sand Section

621 N. Valley (3br/2ba, 1050 sq. ft.) got a mention the other day in "Best Priced?" but isn't getting many votes yet in our poll.

This one was tired and crusty back when it was offered in early 2005, but has since gotten a paint job, a little sprucing up and new appliances.

Bonus: Connection to the 7th St. walkstreet. Hidden downside: Two bedrooms up, one down with a separate outdoor entrance. Now offered at $1.199m. Open Sun. 1-4pm.

420 1st (2br/2ba, 800 sq. ft.) earned a not-so-laudatory mention in MBC's recent story, "Askew Down South," which discussed 3 "tiny, spiffy remodels held less than 2 years."

Click on the original story for more on this home, including the comments.

In short, it's small, 2 buildings, next to Robinson School and a parking lot. Acquired for $1.075m not fully 2 years ago, now offered at $1.275m. They're seeking a bump when a loss seems, frankly, much more likely. Open Sun. 1-4pm.

Tree Section

864 14th is another home subject to our "Best Priced?" poll, and it is running away with the vote, as we write.

In other words, people are finding this little 3br/2ba, 1325 sq. ft., completely updated cottage to be the most attractive for the money: $1.125m.

You have to accept the smallish size, which is tough for families, and some modest liabilities of the location (soccer field, school traffic). But there are still many charms.

One reason people see this as a deal now is that it's down quite a bit from its July 2006 acquisition price of $1.417m. We talk a lot here at MBC about how we're in 2005 prices, but this one seems a step down even from there.

Open Sat. only, 1-4pm.

595 36th (4br/5ba, 3325 sq. ft.) is the wildcard in our mix.

We paid no attention – none – to the listing when it began at $1.625m about 2 months ago. But they have come down quickly to $1.499m, and now we're starting to see the potential.

There's a lot of space here and some decent updates. There's a triple-whammy of a location issue to overcome, being near Blanche, Rosecrans and the refinery. Nearer to $1.3m, though, this offering could have a line at the door. Maybe they will go there. Open Sun. 2-4pm.

717 12th ($1.386m) was mentioned and discussed last weekend, but only had a Saturday open. This week, they're devoting much of Sunday: 1:30-5pm.

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