Monday, August 30, 2010

2004 Pricing in The Shore has Arrived: THROWING IN THE TOWEL

Officially off the market.

Wow. No takers despite its 2004 price.

He only lasted three months on the MLS before skulking off into the night with his tail tucked between his legs.

Better luck next summer, buddy.


With the 2010 Super Summer Selling Season(tm) over before it began, sellers like this should be sweating enough bullets to fill Camp Pendleton.

210 SAINT JOSEPH Ave, Long Beach, CA 90803
Asking Price: $999,000
Purchase Price: $1,145,000
Purchase Date: 9/2006
Beds: 3
Baths: 2.5
Sq. Ft.: 2,343
$/Sq. Ft.: $426
Lot Size: 2,970 Sq. Ft.
Year Built: 1924
MLS#: Y1001993
On Redfin: 91 days
Description: Ideal Belmont Shore location situated between 2nd and Livingston Drive so close to stores/restaurants, Livingston Park and Playground, as well as in desirable Lowell Elementary and Will Rogers Middle School District. Not a short-sale or bank-owned property. Remodeled in 2006 with new Tile Flooring, Updated Kitchen with Granite Counters and Stainless Steel Appliances, Newer Stucco and Dual Paned Wood Windowns, Inviting 2-Story Entry with Staircase, Family Room with French Doors to Backyard with Patio and Grassy Area, Separate Office or 4th Bedroom, Sundeck of Master Suite, Vaulted Ceilings, Skylights and Formal Dining Room. Wonderful Master Suite with Large Private Bathroom featuring Spa-Style Shower, Travertine, and Whirlpool Tub.


"Sundeck of Master Suite"?

On a million-dollar listing? Way to give it your all, dipshit.

Given that the current asking price of $999,000 is firmly in 2004 territory and he has yet to garner any interest, you'd think the seller would be on the precipice of a massive panic attack, hammering his agent about making this listing tighter than an AARP member with a coupon and a tip calculator.

But, no dice. I guess it's only money, right?

And how much money are we talking about? Well, after "buying" this place for $1,145,000 in 2006, in March of this year he finally stopped pretending he could actually afford this house and listed it for $1,094,000. When that didn't work, he lopped off $51,000 like a plantar wart and here the property sits, unoccupied, casually waiting for a miracle from the Lord above.

May 25, 2010 - Price Changed $999,000
Mar 30, 2010 - Listed $1,094,000
Sep 11, 2006 - Sold $1,145,000 (+7.9%/yr)
Aug 20, 2004 - Sold $980,000 (+8.7%/yr)
Jun 24, 1994 - Sold $420,000

Assuming he could get the (soon-to-be-reduced) $999,000 asking price, the four years spent living the delicious lie that he was "rich" because he lived in a million-dollar house in Belmont Shore will cost him, at a minimum, -$206,000. According to the listing this is not a short sale, meaning that enormous loss will be taken directly on the seller's chin.


But that horrific loss is predicated upon this dude actually selling for a cool mil. It's worth noting that only two properties have sold for anywhere near that kind of money during the last six months.

But still, this place is located in the heart of The Shore and it appears to have many nice accoutrements of the Great Housing Bubble:

Although, what's up with this bathroom? Talk about a shrine to bubble exuberance!

I mean, is there any travertine left in that quarry?

The exterior is fucking hideous as far as I'm concerned, but to each his own.


Take a look at that nasty stucco job. Ugh.

We can debate appearances, but you can't argue with the market. And the market hath spoken: This thing is overpriced and every week that goes by without a price reduction serves to make that fact even more glaringly obvious.

If he were truly serious about competing for the few remaining cash-flush buyers out there, he'd aggressively slash the price and try to ignite a bidding war while he can. But for whatever reason he's just chillin', waiting gingerly as more negative economic factors weigh on an already severely challenged high-end market.

This is a great candidate for a walk-away. Think about it: the house has already been abandoned, there's absolutely no staging, the only price reduction occurred more than a month ago, he's already staring down the barrel of a $200,000+ loss...clearly there is no hurry to realize the horrific loss that would result from actually pricing it right. He's not worried about selling because he's already mentally checked out.

I can virtually guarantee one thing: if this guy moonwalks away from his debt-trap, the bank will foreclose and get it back on the market IMMEDIATELY. This seller clearly had a big down payment (remember, not a short sale), so the loss to the bank's balance sheet would be minimal. Given that, I very seriously doubt a lender would delay foreclosure or keep it off the market and play extend-and-pretend through the fall and winter months. Delaying foreclosure and encouraging squatting is typically reserved for houses waaaaaaaaaay underwater that banks don't want to take onto their books.

Some might point out that a sale within 5% of this sales price is possible. After all, on the face of it a 2004 price for generous square footage in a prime area sounds pretty attractive. And when you consider it sold in 2004 for $980,000 WITHOUT A SINGLE ONE OF THESE UPGRADES, $999,000 sounds like an even better deal.

The expired first-time homebuyer tax credits (Fed and soon State) wouldn't be a factor for buyers of million-dollar homes anyway, so selling this house on the open market relies solely on all-cash buyers or those who are comfortable with Jumbo financing. That's an awfully narrow field of potential buyers, but anything is possible in this crazy market.


  1. "Accoutrements of the Great Housing Bubble"
    "A shrine to bubble exuberance"
    Ahhhh...ElBee at his finest!
    Good to see you still have the time to keep us informed.
    I'm still seeing some of the same insanity in my little middle-class neighborhood. Original 2BR 1BA 900 sqft homes with asking prices of nearly $400k, and two blocks over, a bigger house with bigger yard, in much better condition, for $265k.
    Guess which one sold in two weeks, and which one is still rotting on the MLS?

  2. I would love to watch setting sundowns through windowns of masterdeck suite through vaulted ceilings of yonder...

    These homes are not worth more than 500k to 600k range with decent regular appreciation (just give 'em inflation since '94 and see what bubble bursting price this is actually worth). We're getting back to the assessed value of the property and no you cannot have your fancy upgrades included in the price anymore, it has to be paid for with an income and 20% down... winter of seller discontent is upon us... and I'll be watching pricefalls from my windowns...

  3. Market will continue to be locked up for some time IMHO as sellers will do anything to avoid selling unless they have to, as buyers are getting picky. Would be a great time to have 20% down and 2 years of work history, the next couple of years are all about the buyers...

  4. I'm hearing that it's getting harder to get jumbo financing now, also. Another nail in hte coffin?
    I'm not in the business, but this is what I've heard from a few that are.
    Anyone here have an opinion?

  5. I'm still geeking out over "an AARP member with a coupon and a tip calculator...".
    Hehehehehe...keep it up El Bee