Month: October 2012

North Santa Monica Party House Causing Quite the Ruckus

 The old Kathryn Grayson Estate on La Mesa Drive overlooking Riviera Country Club was sold in 2010 to a high end designer for $7.7 Million  and it has become quite the rave lately…literally.  After being extensively remodeled, the owners have tried to think outside the box and have large parties attracting the Los Angeles elite with the goal of trying to get someone drunk enough or high enough to overpay to the tune of $20-25 Million Dollars for the home. The parties have been happening on a frequent basis attracting in upwards of 400 people and driving neighbors on the normally quiet street nuts.  Reports of naked people sleeping in cars and open drug use on the street have been circulating around town.

Tonight at the Santa Monica City Council meeting, an emergency ordinance that prohibits homeowners from hosting more than 150 people at one time for the purposes of selling a home.  Please see the article below for more detailed information.  The attorney representing the owners is threatening a lawsuit against the city if the ordinance is passed…I just have one question: Do the owners realize who the neighbors are that they are driving crazy? Growing up in the neighborhood my answer would be they are not the type of people you want to make enemies with…you may win a small battle but in the long run you will lose the war…in a big way.

UPDATE: The Santa Monica City Council had a split vote on the emergency ordinance and will be revisiting this situation at the next meeting. 

Article: North Santa Monica Party House

3rd Quarter Market Stats…Upward Momentum Continues

For the past few weeks I have heard seasoned real estate professionals state they have never seen a market like this. The recovery in home values on the Westside this year has been dramatic and doesn’t show any signs of slowing down.  This is a real life case of Econ 101 with lack of supply+high demand equaling upward price movement. 

Most of the U.S. is seeing a strong rebound this year but high-end areas butting up against the coast like Santa Monica and Pacific Palisades are getting an even stronger kick thanks to Santa Monica, Venice and the Marina being commercially robust due to major technology companies flocking to the area thus giving it the nickname Silicon Beach.

Please click on the link below and have access to the Partners Trust single family and condo reports where we compare this year’s 3rd quarter to last year’s 3rd quarter.  The comprehensive report stretches all the way out to the valley and some eastside locales.  Besides strong increases in the average price sold the number you really want to pay attention to is how the average month of supply of inventory has decreased dramatically.  The lack of inventory is bordering on historic levels.

North Santa Monica is seeing 2007 prices with moderately sized nice homes going for over $1,000/1,150 a square foot.  Santa Monica in general is up 28.67% with the monthly inventory dropping 57.75%…Pacific Palisades is up 26.72% with monthly inventory dropping 30.14%. More moderately priced locales like Mar Vista are up around 10% and seeing montly inventory dropping alomost 60%.  Please remember these numbers are only comparing specific quarters and can be skewed a bit. 

Please check out:

Even the bubble bloggers acknowledge market strength

From the Santa Monica Distress Monitor: “I started this blog over 5 years ago. A lot has happened over the past 5 years but I am increasingly convinced that this blog and “bubble blogs” as a whole are largely irrelevant now. Yes there is still “uncertainty”, but there always is. The recovery may be choppy at times but I think it is pretty obvious that we are well into recovery territory. At this rate I won’t be surprised to see quality Westside properties at or very near all time highs over the next year or two.  Real estate is boring now, and that’s a good thing. But it also means less blogging. I’m not ready to pull the plug just yet, but from now through the end of the year I anticipate less posting.

Source: SM Distress Monitor

Two significant articles from a national perspective

Article: U.S.families’ debt loads decline to pre-recession levels

Overall, households today are paying less than 16% of after-tax income to cover debt payments and lease obligations, the smallest share since 1984, Federal Reserve data show.

September existing-home sales fell slightly from the previous month, but remain well above year-ago levels as prices continue to escalate on new demand in key real estate markets.

September numbers are up 11% from the 4.28 million units sold a year ago.

**Articles both from LA Times

Mortgage rates hovering near all-time lows

Mortgage rates hovered near their all-time lows this week, with the average 30-year fixed loan at 3.37%, down from 3.39% last week, Freddie Mac said in its latest survey of what lenders are offering to solid borrowers.

The record low of 3.36% was set two weeks ago.

Freddie said the average offering rate for a 15-year home loan was 2.66%, a new record low. Borrowers would have paid an average 0.7% of the loan amount in upfront lender fees and points for the 30-year loan and 0.6% for the 15-year mortgage.

Source (article and chart): LA Times

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