Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Bulletproof Vest Not Included

Address: 1780 W 25th St., 90810
Asking Price: $339,000
Year Built: 1977
Size: 7 beds, 3 baths, 2,224 sq. ft.
$/Sq. Ft.: $152
Purchase price: $315,000
Purchase date: 4/2009
MLS#: R903780
On Redfin: 16 days
Down Payment: $68,000
Monthly Payment: $2,000
Income Requirement: $97,000
Description: Nice Home in Nice Long Beach Area This Home Features 7 bedrooms , 3 bath ,2 car garage. Perfect for Large family At this price it willnot Last

In high school, the Carl's Jr. in the Rossmoor Center was the hangout spot. We would hang out after school, take advantage of the free refills, and talk about the trials and tribulations of our teen years.

Anyhow, there was a guy who worked there named Robert. He was mentally disabled but the management was really generous and gave him a job. His disability was such that he was limited to what duties he could perform but the one thing he ACED was delivering food and collecting those little A-frames with the order numbers on them (the kids with classic cars would always swipe the "67" or "68" depending on the year of their car). And he would always say, in his unique voice:


Patrons answering in the affirmative would receive piles upon piles of (body temperature--HORF!) ketchup packets from his cornucopia of an apron until politely mentioning they were just fine with 34 packets.

The point of this story? I just wanted to congratulate ol' Robert on finding a new career as a realtor! Nice work, buddy! That listing description is AWESOME! Way to go! Gold star for you!

You know how I know this neighborhood sucks? Robert refused to get out of his car to take listing photos:

And Robert has reason to fear for his life. Last month a police officer was shot just a few blocks from here.

And speaking of grade-A listing photos, check out this little before-and-after action. Now you see the used car (and shopping cart) dealership:

Now you don't!

That's some David Blaine shit, right there!

The previous owner, who purchased in June 2004, plunked down a pants-wetting $535,000. In this 'hood? Yikes.

To their credit, the "owners" of this seven-bedroom gem made it almost five years before the enormous debt service swallowed them whole. Judging by the number of cars in the driveway, they were probably renting out several rooms and moving in extended family members to make ends meet. That, or they were operating a valet company out of there:

Anyhow, purchasing a house at TEN TIMES the median income is unsustainable, and with a mortgage like that you're only one pay cut or a leaky roof away from balance sheet detonation.


The owners eventually moonwalked away (probably after living there rent-free for a while) and the house went back to the bank for $315,000 in April. Six days later the lender listed it for $339,000--just enough to break even after commissions--and it's been sitting there collecting dust ever since.

By the way, at its current asking price, this boarding house is 38% off the 2004 price! Yowza!

And considering Robert is too afraid to get out of the car and can't be bothered to move a shopping cart (sorry, that's just GHETTO) out of the way...what do you suppose Robert thinks the odds are of this place selling for $339,000?

About as good as Michael Jackson performing at his London concerts (too soon?).


  1. Oh, yeah, I know that area very well. Since they've had the 710 ramps closed that I usually take to work, I've been going down to Willow, and then heading South into the Harbor on the 47, over the draw bridge. Besides the fact the the neighborhood demographics show robbery and motor vehicle theft to be 3.3~3.7 times the national average, and the murder rate is "only" 1.5 times the national rate, you're living within spitting distance of LOTS of heavy industry. I suppose it might be nice if you're into trains (think "Alameda Corridor"!), you're also in fallout distance from the refineries.
    Oh, well....good luck selling it for $300k+!

  2. I think, if someone makes a serious offer with the contingency "bulletproof vest required", the seller gladly purchase the highest quality vests for the whole family. I'm also wondering about the size of the seven bedrooms...


  3. El Bee, you stole my line!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    I'm flattered, but hurt at the same time. Didn't even give me any credits. Damn. So that's how it goes down? lol.... ouch.

    Anyways, while I know they say "location location location", I think I'd rather have a large house here, then a little closed in apartment on 4th and Temple.

    I don't know this exact area THAT well though, so of course it would depend on things like the "refinery fallout", as someone else pointed out.

    Still, while this area is a little risky,

    (I always think of that song "Ride innnn tooooo the DANGER ZONE" by Kenny Loggins featured in the movie Top Gun.)

    I think I'd rather be in an area with all houses, and some good space between them, versus a hood where you have countless units everywhere.

    In a one block radius, where you'd have probably around 40 or 50 houses, you'd have 160 to 250 units over on 4th and Temple.

    Plus the house has a TON of square footage inside. (it DOES say 2,225 square feet right?!)

    Add to all that, no HOA penalty.

    Even though you'd most likely want to build a moat, and get a slew of pit bulls for the yard, it's still a TON more space both inside the house, and throughout the neighborhood.