Wednesday, May 6, 2009

RE in the LBC's 200th Post!

I just realized that Monday's entry was the 200th post on the Long Beach Real Estate Blog!

It's been a really good run so far, and I have a feeling it's going to get a lot more interesting in the coming months and years. I appreciate all of you who visit this blog (and a special shout-out to all the haters who read every day, although you've been very quiet lately) and every day I look forward to reading your funny and insightful comments.

Here is a re-post of the very first RE in the LBC entry from January 14, 2008:

Uncharted Territory

After reading informative, entertaining real estate blogs such as the Irvine Housing Blog and South OC Tracker, I discovered that there wasn’t anything dedicated to the city I wanted to live in: Long Beach, CA.

I graduated from CSULB and lived in LB--in nice neighborhoods and terrible neighborhoods--for years. My [experiences] living in LB were some of the best in my life. Although I work in Orange County, I fully intend to buy property here in Long Beach.

For those of you that don’t know, Long Beach, CA is right between Los Angeles and Orange County. It has been known as a “less expensive” choice to LA and (especially) OC, and offers close access to freeways to make commuting alternative in the face of inflated housing costs in those areas. However, if you search real estate listing websites, you’ll quickly notice that Long Beach real estate is no longer “cheap” by comparison. In fact, although rents are still reasonable compared to LA and OC, housing prices still remain inflated and in some cases delusional, despite clear evidence of a severe housing downturn.

As far as I know, there are few blogs or information sources (just check out the Long Beach Press-Telegram's Real Estate section online. Now compare it to the OC Register's site) intended to help people understand the intricacies of the Long Beach market and comprehend the challenges posed to sellers, speculators who got in at the peak, and prospective buyers during the upcoming years.

As a consequence, many people I talk to really seem to have no idea what’s going on around them, and what is likely in store as no (or low) money down and non-conforming loans (those more than $417,000) disappear, high down payment requirements return, and buyers evaporate.

As I browse Redfin, it becomes readily apparent that Long Beach residents are oblivious to what’s happening in Orange, Riverside, and San Diego counties, as asking prices in Long Beach are in some cases far higher than nicer properties in vaunted communities such as Irvine, Tustin, and Huntington Beach. I love Long Beach, but it doesn’t have the schools, low crime, clean streets, jobs, or incomes of Orange County. Realtors and loan brokers on commission might tell you now is a great time to buy, but the unbiased fundamental economic factors say we're in for a rude awakening similar to the 90s.

So, this website is intended to discuss the housing situation in Long Beach and to help people, including myself, understand the severity of the upcoming changes in the real estate landscape and ensure their biggest single financial investment is a sound one.


  1. Congratulations, and thank you for keeping the entertainment coming as well as the information.

    I'm looking forward to the future (unlink many homeowners) when I decide to purchase real estate again. At least Im able to put away quite a sum every month as a renter, for that day when I do become a home owner again.

    And I promise that I will continue to read your blog for another 200 posts (at least).

  2. Congrats! This blog is one of my favorites, and I check in daily.

  3. Awesome! Terrific blog. Visit daily.
    Beyond just the LBC, it a great gauge of the SoCal bubble imploding and a revealing of all the wibble-wibble-greed-wibble-granite-wibble-countertop insanity beneath.

  4. Nice job on the blog. I enjoy your writing style!

  5. I dig the blog. I read a bunch of other RE blogs as well, but I live in LB and plan on buying in LB... when the timing is right. I also enjoy your writing style, it captures some quintessential LB vibes (laid back, not too serious, a bit of gangsta, but still full of info). Now we just need to see some price crashes in SFR's near the beach!


  6. Always a fun read my friend! Congrats.
    Now get to work on this one: