Redondo Beach Golden Hills Home Sales April 2013

There were 11 Single Family Homes sold in the Redondo Beach Golden Hills during April 2013 That's a pretty healthy 22% of the 49 total sales in North Redondo Beach CA 90278 for the month.  The Golden Hills remains one of the most desirable Redondo Beach neighborhoods for a number of reasons that I've discussed previously on this blog site.

If you are not familiar with the Golden Hills in Redondo Beach (MLS Area 154), this is the neighborhood south of the Artesia Blvd Manhattan Beach border,  east of Hermosa Beach, and extending to 190th St on the South Redondo border. The sub neighborhood bound by Aviation Blvd, Artesia Blvd, and Harper Ave is sometimes referred to as the Golden Triangle because when you view it on a map it looks like a triangle (sort of).

Predominately there are single family houses throughout the Golden Hills and many of them are on 2500 sq ft lots. You'll often find "reverse floor plans" featuring the living room, kitchen, and master bedroom upstairs. Many of the homes in the Golden Hills are referred to as "Tall & Skinny". While these may appear to be townhomes, they are single family houses.

Sales ranged from $625,200 for a 1000 sq ft 3/1 on Axenty up to $1,263,000 for a 4 bedroom over 3000 sq ft home on Ripley Ave. All of the sales were "Standard". There were no REO, Short Sales, or Probate sales which all fall within the category of distressed inventory. Six homes sold for higher than the MLS list price, 3 homes for less and 2 exactly at the MLS price. Five of the homes were in escrow within 6 days of being listed and 9 within 30 days of listing.  Almost all the conforming Tall and Skinnies sold at list price or above within 30 days. Following are my comments on some of the  individual properties.

1611 Ripley Ave, Redondo Beach CA, 90278: MLS SB13023122. Well let's start at the top with the most expensive home sold in the Golden Hills this year and North Redondo Beach during April 2013.

Certainly not your typical Golden Hills house at all. Not a "Tall & Skinny" and not on a 2500 sq ft lot. This 4 bedroom 3.5 bath home is situated on an almost 7000 sq ft lot (per the tax assessor). Located right on the Hermosa and South Redondo Beach border, there are city light and mountain views as well as a very nice backyard.

The home was listed for by $1.275M by South Bay Brokers and sold for $1.263M with the buyer being represented by Coldwell Banker Residential after 39 days on the market (MLS DOM). In my opinion, this home was an excellent value. If it were 100 yards south in South Redondo Beach or 50 yards into Hermosa Beach, it would have sold for considerably more.

1606 Ford Av, Redondo Beach CA, 90278: MLS SB1303548. I want to point attention to this sale for a few reasons that I hope will help Buyers to better understand what is happening in the current market.

This Tall & Skinny Single Family Home sold for more than the asking price after it was on the market for 1 day. The home was listed for $749,000 by South Bay Brokers which was about the price I would have listed it for. The recorded sale price was $773,000 with the buyer also being represented by South Bay Brokers.

There is nothing remarkable about the house which was built in 1989 and was in mostly original, though well maintained, condition. The location is excellent as it is in the Golden Triangle area of the Golden Hills. The floor plan is your standard Tall & Skinny reverse with the size of the home and lot totally conforming to the neighborhood.

Buyers, this property is a good example of what I mean when I saw Zillow, Redfin, and the other national websites are not "reality". What may not be evident to consumers is that although this home sold for $773,000 there was a $12,000 closing cost credit from the seller to the buyer. The MLS indicates that it was for closing costs which leads me to speculate that it helped with the FHA upfront PMI (a FHA loan was used).

Other points for buyers to note are that this is a good example of how location makes a property more (or less) desirable. Also, always note where the source of the sq ft is coming from. In this case, the listing agent indicated "Appraiser" which was fine as the sq ft was the same as the tax assessor. Often, you'll see "Taped", "Seller", "Appraiser" as the source. I'm not saying the tax records are never wrong, It's just best to start with what is in the public records. If the seller or listing agent has a valid reason to believe the house is larger, let them prove it.

Lastly, don't wait. If you see a property that you are interested in, go for it. Now. Blink and it is gone.

1625 Morgan Lane, Redondo Beach CA, 90278: MLS SB13033789. This home was listed by Shorewood Realtors for $759,000 (relocation sales) and sold for $795,000. Not a typo, $36K higher than list. How come?

First, proximity, to Jefferson Elementary School (walking distance). Jefferson is a big selling point for many families buying in the Golden Hills. So, let's add some value for location. Second, floor plan. Unlike other Tall and Skinny SFRs, 1625 Morgan has the living areas downstairs and the 3 bedrooms all upstairs. There's a few reasons I like this floor plan better than the reverse floor plan. First, it makea  whole lot of sense that anyone who wants to be 2 blocks to Jefferson probably has kids and having their bedrooms on the same level as the parents is often preferable. Second, with the living room downstairs, there's just a great flow to the backyard (as opposed to through a bedroom).

The third element that added value to this property is condition. It was updated with a newly remodeled kitchen with granite counters, recessed lighting, under counter lighting, new appliances, double stainless steel sink, etc. The fourth element of value was size. This 2 level Tall & Skinny is a bit over 1900 sq ft wheres most are just under 1900.

Buyers, take note of location, floorplan, size, and condition when evaluating any home you want to buy.

1648 Haynes Ln, Redondo Beach CA, 90278: MLS SB13027463. What, you don't remember seeing this one listed for sale? No surprise. This was input into the MLS for "comp" purposes only. What does that mean in English? the listing agent (listed by Shorewood Realtors) probably had an MLS waiver meaning they didn't have to offer it for sale to the general public for a period of time, and found an agent who had a buyer and did the deal. Or, it could have been a "pocket listing" which is a variation of the same theme. Or any other of another dozen of reasons. Bottom line is that you probably didn't get to see it or even know about it which is too bad because it is a nice property and a good deal.

Similarly to 1625 Morgan Ln, this Golden Hills Tall & Skinny was over 1900 sq ft, a few blocks from Jefferson Elementary and with all 4 (not 3) bedrooms upstairs and located on a corner lot. Nice.

1648 Haynes is a good example of why I tell buyers they need an agent. If you are just walking around with the Redfin mobile app or getting updates from Zillow,, and Trulia, you would have never known about this property. If your strategy is to go to opne houses and make offers through listing agents, well there wasn't an open house. Not a winning formula. Call me at 310 975 5139 to learn more about properties such as this one which are never "listed" in the MLS.

1123 Steinhart Ave, Redondo Beach CA, 90278: MLS SB13035006.  Surprise, surprise. Not all the single family homes in the Golden Hills are Tall and Skinny. This is a more traditional single level on an almost 5000 sq ft lot in a Golden Hills location that does not (currently) allow subdividing and building Tall & Skinnies.