Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Cooper Arms - 1 Client's Story of Getting his Condo

We are frequently sharing about the different news and events here that effect the Long Beach real estate market, but we haven't often shared about the families and individuals that we actually help.


We thought we would share more about how people end up coming into contact with us and their stories as we help them find what they are looking for throughout Long Beach.

Just two weeks ago, I was able to hand Ralph his keys to his new Cooper Arms condo. As we sat and enjoyed a great lunch at the Crab Pot I started to think about how we had come to meet and help him with is goals of finding a condo.

Ralph had found our website about Long Beach Condos and had requested information about condos in Downtown on Ocean Blvd. We sent him listings in Downtown, just 30 minutes after his initial request so he could start to become familiar with what would be possible. The upper limit for his search that he had filled out was $200,000. In addition to sending out his website of condos, I also left him a message at the phone number he provided.

We actually didn't speak that first week, which isn't uncommon for many of the requests that come through our website. Our first interaction was entirely over e-mail in the following week. Ralph used the website we provided and had saved condos that had a historic flair to them like the Villa Riviera and the Cooper Arms. After 3 weeks of e-mailing back and forth we were able to set up a time to meet on a Saturday where he requested meeting in Downtown because he was taking the Metro Blue Line from Pasadena. I did mention that I normally meet people at the office first, but since he had provided some of his requirements and financials I agreed to meet him and get him out to see some options from Downtown to Alamitos Beach.

Ralph and I made quick work of an aggressive list of condos. The list of condos we went through included everything from historic units to traditional 60's condos in Alamitos Beach. We were able to see units in a variety of conditions, but really Ralph's heart went to a unit that was in fantastic condition and even had a peek-a-boo view of the Ocean. As it was one of the most affordable on Ocean Blvd, we actually made an offer that day. Ralph liked the place quite a bit, but I did suggest making an offer below the list price. I actually suggested an offering price that was over 2% below what Ralph had in mind. My logic was that we can be aggressive and still be professional :).

After just a couple of days wait, we did get a counter offer back that was still below what Ralph had in mind! Ralph was excited to get the condo he wanted for less than anticipated. The escrow ran smoothly with the most challenging part getting the CC&R's so we could get all of the information on what the HOA has been doing.

That brings me back to the Crab Pot. Ralph is the one who actually took me to lunch. He was so happy with the process and the discount that he offered to treat me to some great local crab. The weather was great and the chowder was excellent. Listen to Ralph's story on our Testimonial page.

Search our Long Beach MLS to find the condo that is right for you, or simply fill out our Hot List and we will give you a custom website so you can find the home or condo that is right for you. If you have that burning question that you haven't been able to get the answer to, please call us today at 562-989-7111.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Lofts at the Walker Building

If you haven't had a chance to see the Walker Lofts in downtown long Beach you are missing out on an opportunity to see a fantastic loft project.

This project is just 46 units and currently has only 5 units that are listed for sale. Currently the units range from $549,000 to $775,000. These units feature granite counters, stainless appliances, an HOA spa, and HOA barbecue.

This truly is a building that is located in the heart of downtown at 115 W 4th St and is located within close walking distance to dining and entertainment.

Check out the video we prepared for you on the Walker Building and see what you have been missing.

If you want to see the details of all the units currently for sale at the Walker Building you can check out our FREE MLS and see all the lofts that are available. If you can't find what you are looking for just let us know via the contact form, call us at 562-989-7111, or just let us know that you want your very own custom website of listings and we will be happy to set that up for you.

Related Posts

  • Inside at the Cooper Arms
  • Cliff May Homes in Long Beach

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Belmont Heights Condos on Livingston - Get your views!

The mild rolling topography of Belmont Heights provides for some great vantage points to get views down to the water. In general the height that is needed for a good view is more conducive to a condo rather than a home. Just recently we mentioned about some rare Belmont Heights Condos, and now a couple additional condos have become available that allow for some wonderful views.

View Larger Map They are both located on Livingston. Livingston is a street that almost runsdiagnol to the coastline (North East) which is what allows it to get some pretty nice views to the water while still keeping you close to everything you would need.

  • 3901 E. Livingston Dr - This condo is a larger sized condo at 1,145 sq ft, and the building has a distinctive mid-century modern look. With a large balcony and some great upgrades in the unit that is available this is a great value for under $500,000. (I am showing in our MLS as of the 27th of September it appears to be in a "back up" status). Keep a watch on this building though as it has a prime location and large patios facing south to the water.
  • 3935 E. Livingston - I seriously can't remember when I have seen a listing here and now there is one. It has nice yellow color to the exterior and commands a great location. Even harder to find near the beach, it actually comes with a garage! The unit that is currently available is well taken care of, has nice wood flooring, and the kitchen has been upgraded a bit. Even with being built in 1952 it actually still has inside laundry. It has a great set of windows allow for light and another great view.

Learn more details about each of these units by Searching the Long Beach MLS where you can search by address.

Friday, September 26, 2008

How many short sales exist in Long Beach

Why should anyone care about how many short sales exist in Long Beach? It is important to know how many short sales around available because they can turn into REO (Bank Owned Properties) if banks decide(or owners decide) not to cooperate in the short sale process.

What kind of inventory does Long Beach have?

For display purposes we broke up the inventory into 3 different categories.

We decided that in this market there were several types of inventory that people want to know about. In truth these kinds of inventory exist in any market there are just more of them right now.

We broke the inventory into:

  • Regular Sellers (no bank approval and not banks)
  • Lender Owned (REO, Bank Owned)
  • Short Sale (needing bank approval prior to sale completing)

These three types of inventory represent different market segments and attract different buyers. So how many of each type exist in Long Beach? Well let's take a look at our graph and see what we have.

  • 405 Short Sale Properties
  • 216 Bank Owned Properties
  • 951 Standard sellers

So the market is not all doom and gloom but these are some numbers that we want to look at in a little more detail especially the short sale number as it has the long term possibility of being part of the bank owned market.

  • 25.7% of the market is currently short sales
  • 13.7% of the market is REO or bank owned
  • 60.04% of the market is a regular seller

Looking at this we have a potential of almost an REO market that is almost 38% of the total market if banks don't work out short sales with their clients in need of assistance. The real story is that 60.04% of the market is regular sellers. In fact regular sellers have an advantage in this market because they can advertise (or their real estate professional can) that they are not a short sale and not owned by a bank.

Sellers are able to sell their properties and compete with the banks. It is important to note that sellers are competing on two items with the banks:

  • Price
  • Condition

If sellers are pricing their home at or below the bank owned properties and are in superior condition they are getting multiple offers on their properties and enjoying a short time on the market.

Check out what is happening in your Long Beach neighborhood by filling out the market snap shot form in the right and seeing what your home is worth and everything that is going on.

Related Posts

  • Short Sales in Long Beach are 26.6% of the market
  • Mortgage Relief Act
  • Top 10 Foreclosure Avoidance Tips

1572 - total active residential

405 - short sales

216 - REO

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Homes Sales Across Los Angeles County area Up for 2008

Raise your hand if you thought more homes would be sold Los Angeles county in 2008 than in 2007. Remember to be honest because someone is watching.

The home sales for 2008 have been up for both July and August. By the way we aren't talking just 1 or 2 homes we are talking a large number of homes even for an area the size of Los Angeles county.

Let's take a look and see what is going on here.

What percentage were home sales up in Los Angeles county?

We want to make sure we have a clear picture of what is going on here so let's lay out what is going on.

  • July 2008 compared to July 2007 - Homes sales up almost 7%
  • August 2008 compared to August 2007 - Homes sales are up 10%

Now that is a nice rebound considering everyone was saying that all was going to be doom and gloom. Now the median value of homes purchased last year was $590,250 and for 2008 it was $391,000. That is a large difference for sure. Does it mean that homes have fallen this much? It most certainly doesn't in our mind. It does say that first time home buyers are still buying homes and they are buying what they can afford and not stretching themselves too far.

There are still opportunities out there if you are looking for a home. In fact recently we have found that here in Long Beach, nearby Lakewood, and several other cities homes are selling with multiple offers on them.

Homes that are in the entry level of the market are being sold in days and weeks and not months as some parts of the high end market are experiencing. So look to see what you can buy in the neighborhood that you have always wanted to be in. Our FREE MLS will allow you to check things out on your own time.

Related Posts

  • Condo Sales Across Los Angeles County are Down for 2008

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

How can you help rebuild Long Beach?

Have you ever thought that you would like to help someone in need in Long Beach but weren't sure how to go about it? Well you are in luck because there is a great organization that helps people in need in the city of Long Beach. The group, Rebuilding Together Long Beach, is dedicated to helping home owners who can't afford to help repair their homes.

Think of them as "Extreme Home Makeover" at the local level and helping those in need without ever getting on TV, getting credit, or having a large budget and having to depend on the generosity of those in Long Beach who can afford to give to help those in need.

Our Long Beach Broker Tour was pleased to have Diane Anglin, the president, come in and speak to our group about what they do. Before I get into what they do it should be noted that she mentioned how they don't get press in the local media or paper. Now they don't want press for credit they want press so they can help more people. So if anyone knows newspaper writers, TV producers, or others in the large scale media then let them know about this very worth group of dedicated volunteers.

So what do they do?

They truly help people stay in their homes who can't afford to fix them. Some of us, including me, take for granted sometimes what we can do ourselves or afford to fix at our own homes. They help people with the following:

  • Adding of security lights
  • Repair of hand rails
  • Modifications to bathrooms for the handicapped

They by no means are limited to these but think about the security light issue. Some elderly members of the community can't afford a security light and can't install one and these great group of people go out and take care of these issues for them.

There are so many people in need that they can't help them all and in fact they need help just to make sure they can keep helping people.

How can YOU Help?

Here is the challenge in this post. We are challenging everyone to see what how they can help this great group to keep helping people. We can all make excuses but it would be even better to give up the cup of coffee or the soda and make sure to help them out. There are several ways to help them out.

Let's cover a few of them:

  • Donate Via Pay Pal at their website - http://www.rebuildingtogetherlongbeach.org/give.html
  • Volunteer - They are always in need of people to help them repair homes and carry out their mission.
  • Sign up for Ralphs card and enter their number of 83877 - http://www.rebuildingtogetherlongbeach.org/ralphs.html
  • Link to their website - Make sure that people know who they are and send more traffic to them.
  • If you know someone in the large scale media let them know about this group - Press will help them help more people so let's make sure people know about them.

I encourage everyone to visit their website at http://www.rebuildingtogetherlongbeach.org/index.html. You will find more detail about what they do, who they help, and how you can take part in changing peoples lives in your very own backyard.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Ocean Blvd High Rises East of Alamitos Ave

Trying to digest all of the great buildings on Ocean Blvd can certainly seem like a daunting task. If you caught our post last week on High Rises on Ocean Blvd, we stayed west of Alamitos Ave.

Crossing Alamitos Ave and going east you will get the most direct Ocean Views possible in Long Beach. Your biggest challenge will be deciding if you walk down to the sand or head on over to Pine to grab a bite first.

Here are some of the great high rises on Ocean Blvd that are east of Alamitos:

Villa Riviera - One of the most famous buildings in Long Beach and affectionately known as "the building with the green roof". This historic high command a great location on the corner and as such as wonderful city and Ocean views. As a historic building it's charm is in it's history and floor plans will vary wildly across the 134 different condos. No balconies in this building, but you will enjoy a cool breeze when you open your windows. It is under going a wonderful exterior transformation here in 2008 and is looking brighter than ever.

the Pacific - This is one of the first true luxury buildings that graced Ocean Blvd. It is one of my personal favorites as it is always in impeccable shape. Built in 1992 the floor plans are excellent and provide both dramatic city and Ocean Views. Balconies are a great size allowing room to enjoy the views and year round great weather. The pool allows you to look to the ocean and just steps away you can walk directly to the sand. The easiest way to describe this building is a 5 Star Hotel that happens to be a condo complex.

Ocean Club - The Ocean Club is the eastern most high rise condo complex in Downtown. It's architecture style is one that reminds me of some buildings in San Diego. Being built in 1984 it still has some functional floor plans and the units were built to maximize views. You won't feel as close to downtown in this building, but you will have a short trip to the beach. The nice part here is you can find 1 bedrooms at 1,000 sq ft which is a treat for that weekend get away.

Galaxy Towers - The Galaxy Towers are actually located in Belmont Heights, but since they are located on Ocean Blvd, we thought we would share a bit about this unique building. Although on the North side of Ocean Blvd it commands wonderful unobstructed views of the Pacific. This 20 story building is in the only high rise in Belmont Heights and with current zoning will be the only high rise allowed. You won't find much in the way of amenities here, but you will find consistent floor plans of 1,500 sq ft.

This primer of High rises on Ocean Blvd should save you some driving. The hard part now is trying to figure out which one is best for you. We are happy to help you, call us today at 562-989-7111 and we will be happy to give you more information on what is out there. You can always search our FREE Long Beach MLS so you can see immediately what is available.

Additional Resources:

  • How much can I save under the Mills Act?

  • High Rises in Long Beach on Ocean Blvd

Monday, September 22, 2008

Top 5 Long Beach Bank Owned Challenges

We have been helping clients get some great deals on bank owned homes and condos here in Long Beach. As we have been doing this, the prices have been great, but there are some practical challenges that we thought we should share so you can be prepared for the journey of purchasing Long Beach real estate that is bank owned.

  1. Mailbox Keys - When you get a condo, the previous owner usually just passes on their complete set of keys. In the case of a bank owned property you usually will not get key to your mailbox. I know it's a small price to pay to save thousands, but be prepared for this inconvenience as you will often have to contact the HOA to see if they can help.
  2. Garage Door Opener - It's about a $35 or so, but you will need to get the codes to program your remote correctly. The bank usually won't have the code, so ask nicely to see if the HOA can help.
  3. History of the Property - Make sure to have your home inspector go through the property thoroughly because the bank won't know much. Since they haven't occupied the property they don't have to give you a TDS (transfer disclosure statement).
  4. Delayed Closing - The banks are very stringent on making sure you meet your timelines in the contract, but they don't seem to follow the same rules. The banks may be slow to get paperwork back (especially items like escrow instructions) so be prepared to do some waiting at the end.
  5. Short Inspection Periods - The standard purchase contracts in California allow for a 17 day inspection period. The banks all create their own contracts and usually have periods from 5-10 days. So be prepared to get your inspections done quickly!

Knowing these items before you step into an escrow for a bank owned property can certainly make life a bit less surprising.

Search for bank owned properties throughout Long Beach using our FREE Long Beach MLS.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Spare your change for a local Long Beach Charity

Many people focus on the high rises on Ocean Blvd, which are wonderful, but the people of Long Beach are what make this city a great one. Sometimes there are families and individuals that need help due to unforeseen circumstances. A wonderful local organization, New Life Beginnings, is a charitable organization that has been helping Mother's here in Long Beach since 1986.

The mission of New Life Beginnings is to help single mothers break the cycle of welfare by continuing their education. By providing shelter and the ability for education New Life Beginnings gives mothers the empowerment and time necessary so they can achieve new independence. They are located in the heart of Downtown at 835 E. 6th St, Long Beach Ca 90802.

As they are an organization that depends heavily on volunteers and donations, now is their time for their annual fundraiser. They ask a simple goal for their fundraiser, simply spare your change for two weeks. Setting aside your change for 2 weeks and placing in the baby bottle is all that you have to do. You can pick one up from Our Lady of Refuge or at New Life Beginnings.

It truly amazes me how far some change can go. Last year they were able to raise $5,000 from just small change. We hope you can help, if you happen to stop by our office here in Long Beach, we have a bottle here where you can donate your change.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Condo Sales Across Los Angeles are down for 2008

Is anyone surprised at the fact that there are less condos sold this year in Los Angeles county than last year? I would hazard a guess and say no but stay tuned for our report on home sales across the county and you might be surprised at what you see.
So how many condos were sold in August?
We had just over 1,492 condos that sold in Los Angeles County this year compared with 1,651 for last year. Sales were down almost 10% in condos in August.
The numbers for July in Los Angeles County change a little bit more so let's look at those for just a minute to see what they reveal to us.
How many condos sold in July?
Sales for condos in July were down 23%! Now considering that 2007 was already down from the year before that is a large percentage to come down.
What does this all mean?
Percentages are great but they don't always tell the whole story in my opinion. What we are seeing for sure is some data that shows condo sales are down and this won't surprise anyone. What is not shown on these graphs is the median home prices of homes that have sold is lower than last year. We believe that this is related to the fact that people and banks have tightened their lending guidelines and are lending money more cautiously then before.
So if you are looking for a condo is all lost? I would say that no you will have some nice choices today to look at. Not sure what is available in your area? Check out our our FREE MLS and see what is available in your area.

Friday, September 19, 2008

High rises in Long Beach along Ocean Blvd

Joe and I were in San Diego this past week teaching internet marketing to real estate professionals. Our first stop was in Downtown San Diego and it sure has developed over the years. Joe and I were born and raised in Spring Valley which is in the east county.

Looking at all of the high rises in downtown San Diego, I realized that it can sometimes be a daunting task to try to determine which one is the best fit even if you are familiar with the city.
In that light I thought I would provide a quick jump start to some of the High Rise Condos in Long Beach so you can hit the ground running with some research and notes.

West Ocean - West Ocean is a 2 story high rise development located on the West end of Ocean Blvd. Being on the West end it will have views of the harbor and you will still be able to look to the south east for the Queen Mary and the bay. The amenities are one of the best of all the high rises as it is one of the newest buildings (2007). Floor plans are designated by letters and you will have some great sizes to choose from 984 sq ft to over 1,700 sq ft (Penthouse is over 3,000 sq ft).

Harbor Place Towers - This towering white building looks like it is on Ocean Blvd, but is actually located on Seaside Way. Built in 1990 it has floor plans that are still functional and most of the units have balconies so you can enjoy the year round great weather. They have 220 condos in total here so usually there is a condo available for sale here, but you will want to make sure to get out to see the units on the Ocean side as they tend not to last long on the market. This building is near the Long Beach arena so you will get some view of the parking lot here, but on the horizon you will still see the Pacific Ocean. Their HOA website also has some helpful information too.

AQUA - This two tower project was being built near the same time as West Ocean. This building dominates the skyline with vibrant colors. It's construction was largely done with concrete so you won't be able to hang pictures on the walls easily, but your condo certainly will be pretty quiet. Floor plans here are functional and they were all designed with Balconies so you can enjoy the Ocean or city views. With a location closer to the beach than Harbor Place or West Ocean, you will get a bit more of the water view.

International Towers - The famous "round building" has a prime location near Alamitos Ave that provides some of the best views in all of Long Beach. As it is round, you will find floor plans that differ from traditional residences, with units ranging from 880 sq for 1 bedrooms, to over 1,000 sq ft for 2 bedroom units there are some great options available. Amenities are nice with a gym and a pool that will also provide an Ocean view.

It's tough to get all of Ocean Blvd in just 1 post, so I will stop here since we have hit Alamitos Ave. Continuing to move along the Blvd we will give you some great information on a few more high rises as well as some popular mid-rise buildings that have sparkling views of the Pacific.

If you just can't wait for more blog posts, check out our Long Beach Condo website that gives a breakdown of buildings by their names and addresses.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Looking for REO Properties? Try North Long Beach.

Certain areas of the city have more REO (Real Estate Owned) properties to choose from then others.

As a city 12.7% of the properties that are available for purchase in the city are owned and listed by banks.

In North Long Beach 22.45% of the properties that are available are owned and listed by a bank.

So what does this mean? Well it means that banks have to get rid of some properties and while they aren't giving them away (average discount, if any on an REO, is 5%) there are properties in this area of town that can make wonderful first time homes and some even make sense to purchase as investment properties.

Want to see exactly what is available in this area? Check out our FREE MLS and you will see every property that is available. If you are ready to take your search to the next level we are happy to meet with you personally to help you accomplish your goals. Just fill out our contact form and we will be happy to help you.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Choices Abound in Downtown Long Beach

Looking to take advantage of the REO market in Long Beach? If you are Downtown Long Beach probably will not be the place that you are looking for bank owned properties but you will have a few choices to look at.

The REO (Real Estate Owned or Bank Owned) properties in Long Beach represent 12.7% of the total properties in Long Beach.

In Downtown Long Beach only 9.97% of the market is currently owned and listed by banks. Now let's take banks out of the equation and let's look at the other 343 properties that are available for you to select from. This doesn't even include the new condos in downtown that are listed by builders but don't appear in the MLS. So if you are looking for choices Downtown Long Beach is a great place to look because you can choose from entry level properties to the ultra high end.

Want to see exactly what is available? Check out our FREE MLS where we have every available property in the city at your disposal. If you want your own custom website just fill out our contact form and we will be happy to get you set-up with your own private and custom website.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

What areas have the most selection in Long Beach?

Choices, choices, choices. That really is what it is all about when selecting something that you have waited a long time to get. Sometimes though we don't have the kind of choices we want. Isn't it better to know ahead of time what kind of choices you are going to be getting?

With all of the reports that there are plenty of properties to choose from we thought we would break down what is available in the market by area in Long Beach so you can decide for yourself what area you want to look in for the most selection. We didn't select all areas of Long Beach in this graph but rather a few that show the difference in area and property choices. The graph represents the total number of available properties in each area of Long Beach. We are graphing residential properties only so no multi-family in the chart.

Some highlights to take notice of:
  • While not in the chart there are 1,610 active properties in Long Beach
  • 44.4% of the active properties are located in two areas, Downtown & North Long Beach
  • Some areas that cover a bit of ground, like Los Altos, have very few properties to choose from.
  • Some areas will have far more condos available then homes to choose from, ex. Downtown Long Beach.
So when you decide on looking in an area check out the FREE MLS first and decide which area has the kind of choices that you are looking for. Not sure which area might suit you best after looking at things? That's why we personally meet with every single person to work with them on their needs and their goals. 

If this is something you want fill out our contact form and we will be happy to get in touch with you to set up a time to meet with you.

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Are Bank Owned Properties Really all Over Long Beach?

You know when things get reported it can often seem worse than it really is. Now I know that it is all about headlines and selling newspapers but let's look at what is really going on.

Today I thought we would show what is going on in the real estate market in Long Beach with what kind of properties are really owned and being listed by the banks.

Sometimes lender owned properties are referred to as REO(Real Estate Owned), Bank Repo, or just Lender owned. For our purposes we will be calling them Lender Owned. So the facts of the Long Beach real estate market are right in front of us and they are this.
  • 1,610 total properties available in Long Beach
  • 206 properties in the entire city of Long Beach owned & listed by banks
  • 12.79% of the market of active properties is owned by banks
  • 87.21% of the market are properties that are currently owned by sellers
Am I saying that the market is completely perfect, rosy, and easy? I am not saying that. What it is though is a market that has properties that are being sold each and every month and the vast majority of properties that are on the market are not owned by banks.

In fact sellers can market the fact that their properties are NOT bank owned and this is a selling point. Make sure that prior to listing your property you have a solid marketing plan in place with your real estate professional.

We in fact offer our clients an 81 point marketing plan. If you want to see what is available in your area use our FREE MLS or fill out the form to the right in the blog and you will have your very own market snapshot of what is happening in your exact neighborhood.

Monday, September 08, 2008

Long Beach Sales For August 2008

What happened in Long Beach in August? Well it looks like 258 homes and condos found new owners and that is a great way to end the summer for those sellers.

As always we want to look a little deeper into what this stats are showing us and sometimes what they aren't.

So we had 258 Sold which is a solid month of activity in the city of Long Beach. We also only have 1,577 properties in the city that are available for sale. This would put the supply of total residential properties at 6.11 months of inventory.

We calculate supply of homes as (Total number of Homes Available)/(Number of Homes Sold). In the calculation we make the assumption that no new homes would be listed for sale to come up with the inventory time frame.

Now does this mean we are back to a sellers market? Not really but in certain areas around town it does feel like. In certain parts of town homes are selling in 3 days and it is generally when they are more affordable.

I believe that the data shows that we have willing buyers to purchase homes as long as we have sellers who want to list and sell at a certain price.

Saturday, September 06, 2008

Long Beach Real Estate and Classic Cars

I absolutely love classic cars. Maybe it comes from the many times as a kid that my Dad would take my twin brother and I to the different car shows in San Diego. He would explain about the different cars from the classic Muscle Cars to the roadsters. It was always a fun experience.

Now, here in Long Beach, we get the best of both worlds (great cars and great real estate). Tomorrow, September 7th, is the 19th annual Belmont Shore Car Show. You get to see prime Long Beach real estate along with about 700 classic cars. All cars on display will be pre-1975 so expect to see some absolute stunners.
This great event is hosted on by the Bay City Rodders car club. There won't be much parking on 2nd St to speak of, unless you have registered your classic car for the event. Be prepared to do some walking and staring at some of the most beautiful cars you will see from LA to Orange County. So grab a jamba juice, or a Starbucks and get out there and have some fun.

Friday, September 05, 2008

Bank Owned on Ocean Blvd

Ocean Blvd in Long Beach is truly one of the most well known streets in all of Long Beach. Known for it's beautiful high rises and powerful views of the Pacific many people come down on the weekends to have a bite and stroll.

As the target market for these high rises are generally the luxury crowd, many people never venture to even research what these condos cost. With some pressure in the condo market, there are a few bank owned condos in high rises that are very desirable.

Here is a snapshot of some of these Downtown Long Beach condos and what is available.

International Towers - This building, often referred to as the "round building" was built in 1967 and commands one of the best locations. With 1 bedrooms being on the larger side at 880 sq ft and 2 and 3 bedroom units being over 1000 sq ft this building is very popular.

  • Inventory- There is just 1 bank owned unit available here on the 29th floor for $674,900. Condition is average, but the views are massive.

the Pacific - One of my personal favorites in Long Beach as it truly feels like a 5 star hotel that happens to be a condo complex. This building has traditionally low turnover as many residents keep a condo here as a 2nd home. Built in 1992 it has great floor plans ranging in size from just over 880 sq ft to over 1,500 sq ft.

  • Inventory - There are actually 2 bank owned units here. A 1 bedroom just under $420,000 and a unit on the 7th floor for $724,900 (it's a 2 bedroom, 2 bathroom unit). This 2 bedroom unit looks in amazing shape.

AQUA - These two towers are in a location that provides easy access to restaurants and you can even pick up the blue line to head to downtown LA. Two different address for this building, 388 Ocean and 488 Ocean. The layouts are the same in each tower but the views will vary. With a variety of floor plans to choose from this building has been popular.

  • Inventory - 488 E. Ocean has a 2 bedroom listed under $420,000. It's on the 15th floor so expect good views, it just needs a little clean up. 388 E. Ocean actually has a Penthouse available that is bank owned. It is currently listed for $989,900.

Ocean Blvd is having some great choices available. Imagine being in a great high rise and your payments are actually affordable..crazy! With some of these bank owned units it certainly is possible to live on the blvd for less.

Search the Long Beach MLS FREE and get more details on these Bank Owned properties and more.

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Seaport Marina...new vision again?

After Lennar pulled it's plans from the table, I was really hoping someone wouldn't let the idea go that that 11 acre corner was in need of redevlopment. With the amount of money invested in planning, it was likely that something would be done, we just weren't sure wat form it would take.

Now, if you drive by the SeaPort Marina Hotel (2nd and PCH) you have probably noticed that they are asking you to "share the vision" and visit a new website http://www.secondandpch.com/ . The new website, although a little slow to get around, provides some good information on what is to come.

So what are some of their ideas? It is no surprise that they are looking at a mix-used project. Integrating retail stores, a hotel, and luxury residences is a popular (and profitable) way to develop where dirt is expensive. Some highlights of this upcoming project include:

  • 12 Story Hotel - Looks to be known as "Black Pearl". It could be on the North side or South side of the site. My vote would be for the south side where street noise would be greater, so residential units could enjoy the more quiet spaces to the north.

  • Great Spaces - This would be public space where anyone cold gather (see image in this post). This was a sticking point with the previous plan Lennar was in as they did not provide enough room for the community. The initial sketches look good and allow a flow from PCH to the Bay.
  • Residential - I think they will continue to refine their offering here. They currently describe a mix of units branded with the hotel, conventional flats, townhomes and even lofts. Sounds cool, but a focus will be needed to really make sales strong. Especially close to the water there will be a need for maximizing views while providing functional layouts. Not sure down by the bay would be the "loft" crowd, as the Lofts have dominated in Downtown Long Beach.
So, the "vision" is looking good. It has a long way to go, and we will be happy to update you as we hear about the progress. Visit their website as well and we would love to hear your thoughts on the plans.

You can always search for Long Beach real estate near the Seaport Marina using our Free Long Beach MLS