HOME SPOTLIGHT: Unparalled Chic in The Palisades
“Unparalleled Chic” is how you would describe this residence. It is a perfect fit for a discriminating Buyer. The finest architectural design concept is accompanied by top of the line rich and lush materials, appliances and finishes throughout. The home offers 5 bedrooms and 6.5 baths, an open kitchen, family room, den, formal dining room, media room, master office, staff office, and a large great room leading to a generous terrace with a fire pit overlooking the canyon. Beautifully landscaped, the outdoors offers a pool, spa, and terraces off the master and kitchen. A prime location with views completes this unique and very beautiful property.
Address: 1514 San Remo Drive, Pacific Palisades, CA 90272
Realtors: Judy Feder, Hilton & Hyland
Common Mistakes Sellers Can Avoid
By MICHAEL EDLEN | Special to the Palisadian-Post
Iam frequently asked for suggestions that would help owners preparing to put their home on the market. The following are several mistakes that can be avoided and may make the difference between success and failure:
Employing an agent without comparing: This may be the biggest mistake and easiest one to avoid. Many people think all agents are basically the same and that it makes little difference which one they hire. There are tremendous differences in quality of service, degree of experience, level of skills, amount of advertising and extra staff support provided.
Please interview at least two alternatives before selecting one. Find out what the differences are by asking each one the same questions—and listen carefully to the answers and feelings behind those answers. We have a list of over 20 questions that can help in this process. Also, ask to see examples of marketing pieces the agent recently used.
Selecting the agent who suggests the highest price: This mistake often involves an owner’s attachment to an overly optimistic selling price for their home, which an agent may encourage or use to highly influence the agent selection process. The prospective seller usually makes the best agent choice based on the services, problem solving and negotiation expertise the agent can provide.
Once that decision has been made, the first important action will be to determine the best pricing strategy for most effective marketing. Starting out on the basis of an over-inflated listing price may result in a failure to sell for many months.
Listing as a favor, out of guilt or feeling obligated: Some people feel they have no choice but to list their house with a close relative or friend who has a real estate license. Others feel obligated to use the same agent they worked with years earlier when buying the home. Some think nothing of giving a listing as a favor to help someone out.
These are not good reasons for hiring an agent. Your home is probably one of your largest single assets. A difference in sale price of two to three percent can easily happen, depending on the skills and experience of the listing agent. With prices averaging over $2 million, this decision can easily cost a seller $40,000-60,000.
Choosing the agent who offers the lowest commission: The old adage that “you get what you pay for” is often true in real estate. An agent who offers the lowest fee may simply feel he or she has no other way to compete for business. If this agent discounts his or her fee by 10-15 percent upfront, how strongly will he or she negotiate for a client? How much supplemental advertising, time and extra services will the agent provide? The commission cost savings may result in an even greater discount in sales price.
Not hiring a local specialist: Some agents promote their services as “being throughout the entire Westside of Los Angeles.” Be careful—a local agent may have great advantages in marketing, networking and negotiating. These could be important issues to factor into your decision process.
Basing the price on a neighbor’s asking price: This mistake often results in homes staying on the market for several fruitless months. An asking price is not the ultimate sales price, and the basis for setting an asking price is by a comparison with several actual sales, not just a price another owner hopes to get close to.
Not doing any home preparations or pre-inspections: You never get a second chance to make a good first impression. Even in a “seller’s market,” many homes do not sell, and often it is because of how they look or feel. It does not cost much to do basic “staging,” and it may result in a much better and quicker sale.
Getting property pre-inspections done can greatly minimize hassles or concerns early in escrow, and also can potentially save the seller many thousands of dollars in credits or repairs.
Not adjusting to marketplace results and feedback: If other agents or their clients say that the house does not show well or that it is over-priced compared to other homes they have seen, it does not make sense to ignore this feedback. According to surveys, if a home has had over 10 showings and no offers, it is over-priced.
Michael Edlen is ranked in the top 200 of all agents in the country and has provided counseling to thousands of owners. Most of his business is derived from a referral base of more than 1,200 past clients. He can be reached at 310-230-7373 or email@example.com.
Huge Decrease in Palisades Inventory
By MICHAEL EDLEN | Special to the Palisadian-Post
As of Jan. 31, there were 57 single-family Palisades residences listed in the Multiple Listing Service (MLS), which is a 34-percent dip from the start of 2016. So far this year, 20 Palisades homes have sold, and there are now 35 homes in escrow in the Palisades.
The average sale price per square foot has increased by 12 percent compared to the same period in 2016 and is now at $1,195 per square foot. Median sale prices are currently at $3.9 million, compared to $2.9 million one year ago.
The lowest-priced available home is a three-bedroom, three-bath on Gallaudet at $1.8 milion. The highest-priced property is a recently built eight-bedroom, 12-bath on Rivas Canyon, asking $21.5 million.
The lowest sale price so far this year was a three-bedroom, three-bath on Akron, which sold for $1.83 million. The highest sale so far this year was a seven-bedroom, seven-bath on Amalfi, which sold for $9.8 million.
There are only four condominiums/townhouses on the market now—a record low, down 75 percent from last year at this time. They range from one-bedroom, one-bath in the Edgewater Towers on Sunset Boulevard, offered at $695,000, to a three-bedroom, three-bath condo in the Rockwell Building for $3.4 million. Four condos are currently in escrow.
There have been four condo sales so far this year, ranging from a two-bedroom, two-bath on Bienveneda, which sold for $816,000, to a three-bedroom, three-bath unit on Palisades Drive, which sold for $1.65 million. The median condo sales price is $1.04 million, which is up 31 percent from this time last year.
There are currently nine pieces of raw land available, ranging from a 4,066-square-foot lot on Posetano, offered at $175,000, to $3.2 million for a semi-completed home on Porto Marina Way. So far this year, no lots have sold.
There are currently 59 available leases in the Palisades (a 37-percent increase in available leases over the start of 2016). They range from a one-bedroom, one-bath home on Sunset, asking $3,000 per month, to a five-bedroom, seven-bath home on San Remo, asking $50,000 per month.
There have been 14 leases so far this year. The highest lease so far this year was a five-bedroom, six-bath on Via Cresta, which leased for $25,000 per month. The lowest was $3,500 per month for a two-bedroom, two-bath on Sunset, and the median was $7,500 per month, up 19 percent from this time last year.
Michael Edlen, an agent with Coldwell Banker, has been keeping statistics on Pacific Palisades housing prices for the last 31 years.
Good Girl in Rivas Canyon: How a Montana Hoofer Found Happiness in Hollywood—and Matrimonial Discord in the Palisades
By MICHAEL OLDHAM | Special to the Palisadian-Post
It was 1922 when a shy high school student named Myrna Williams posed as a model for an art teacher.
Harry Fielding Winebrenner created a school lawn cluster of allegorical works called “Fountain of Education,” with the 15-year-old girl with uplifted face and arm named “Inspiration” at its heart.
She would stand on the grounds of Venice High School for decades.
Today the original concrete is preserved only in the opening sequences of the 1978 musical “Grease” (a movie that, two decades later, inspired Britney Spears to shoot her video for “Baby One More Time” in the gym), replaced by a worthy bronze replica.
But the model would go on to become a household name and the kind of outspoken Hollywood liberal out of favor today in Washington, D.C.—and a proud Palisadian.
Williams would change her name to Myrna Loy and become a global star in “The Thin Man” comedy-detective series from the 1930s that proved that endless Hollywood sequels are not a modern invention.
The end of “Inspiration” came only seven years after Loy’s passing in 1993.
By then, Loy had built a career filled with a catalog of classic movies from the silent film era deep into the Golden Age of film land and been awarded an honorary Oscar.
She was born on a ranch in Radersburg, Montana (population today: 66) and raised in nearby Helena.
“I was a homely kid with freckles that came out every spring and stuck on me till Christmas,” Loy once said of her childhood looks.
The teen moved to California with her family for their health, both physical and financial. Her father was investing in real estate, with Charlie Chaplin as one of his clients.
She quickly caught the acting bug, taking dancing lessons and appearing in local stage productions.
Despite her doubts about her own childhood look, she attracted the attentions of silent movie icon Rudolph Valentino, who eased her way onto the silver screen with a smart part in the 1925 film, “What Price Beauty.”
With her slight frame and memorable turned-up nose, Loy would “vamp” her way through many silent films, usually appearing as an exotic female whose sexuality would need to be punished by the end of the 80-minute adventure.
A cheesy highlight would be Fah Lo See, the sadistic daughter of Asian villain Dr Fu Manchu in “The Mask of Fu Manchu.”
The green-eyed star would grow tired of such grimly awful (and terribly dated) femme fatale roles.
The coming of sound in movies would give her a second act.
Her big break came two years later when director W. S. Van Dyke noticed her sense of humor not shown in previous epics, a charm and classy allure not called for when playing Eurasian villains, and cast her as a spunky heiress opposite retired detective William Powel (and even more importantly, a wire-haired terrier called Asta) in the first of the “Thin Man” movies.
With a twinkle in her eyes and witty back-and-forth with Powell, some film critics point to Loy being the actor who made the films successful.
Others credited Skippy, who played Asta, but dogs don’t get a vote (otherwise German Shepherd Rin Tin Tin might have won best actor at the first Academy Awards ceremony).
The chemistry between Nora and Nick Charles was real: Loy and Powell got along.
“I never enjoyed my work more than when I worked with William,” Loy recalled. “He was a brilliant actor, a delightful companion, a great friend and, above all, a true gentleman.”
She also worked well with Skippy, who was paid $200 per week to upstage her charm.
The final movie for the team of Loy and Powell would be the 1947 film, “Song of the Thin Man.” By then, the actress who was once labeled “Queen of the Movies,” was living inside Pacific Palisades.
Loy had purchased a home off Sunset Boulevard in the Rivas Canyon area sometime during the mid-1940s, around the time when she saw another classic film of hers released—the 1946 film called “The Best Years of Our Lives.”
In this family favorite Loy played Milly Stephenson, acting out Hollywood’s version of a “perfect wife,” but the “perfect wife” role she often played had its limits.
“It was a role no one could live up to, really,” Loy once recalled. “No telling where my career would have gone if they hadn’t hung that title on me. Labels limit you, because they limit your possibilities. But that’s how they think in Hollywood.”
Still, her then-newly acquired Palisades home on Rivas Canyon Road would seem to fit the needs of any off or on screen “perfect wife” with its country, homey look.
The house was described for the Palisadian-Post by Emily W. Leider, author of “Myrna Loy: The Only Good Girl in Hollywood.”
“She bought a clapboard ‘saltbox’ house off Sunset Boulevard, overlooking Rivas Canyon,” Leider said. “The house, copied from one in Connecticut, was painted dark red and had handmade furnishings and paneled walls in the sitting room, crafted by previous owner Avery Rennick.”
Rennick, a renowned furniture maker, was the original owner of the home. In the late 1920s it has been home to George Sanders, a Russian-born actor known for his plummy British accent.
Leider described the outside and inside of Loy’s Palisades house. “The grounds included a lawn, a lime tree orchard and an English garden that reminded [Loy] of one her maternal grandmother had cultivated in Montana.”
The biographer added, “In general, Myrna Loy cared more about the outdoor setting than the interior. She loved gardening. She wasn’t much interested in furniture.”
Loy left the Palisades in the late 1940s, though she would continue to own her Rivas Canyon home and rent it out for some years.
The actress burned through four marriages, ending in four divorces. A two-year marriage played out noisily on Rivas Canyon Road. This was between 1946 and 1948 when she was hitched to writer and highly decorated naval officer Gene Markey.
Markey, a mainstay of the 1930s “manly-men” bratpack that included John Wayne and Douglas Fairbanks Jr., was, by all accounts, a handful.
During the divorce Loy initially claimed mental cruelty, but later retracted, adding that Markey could “make a scrubwoman think she was a queen, and a queen a queen of queens.”
Staying coupled wasn’t Loy’s only challenge—she once admitted to being weak when it came to finances.
“I’m terrible about money. Awful!” Loy once confessed. “I always had people to handle my finances. Then all I did was make money and they’d put it in the bank.”
The big screen career of Loy, like many from her generation, would fade in the 1950s—she was a middle-aged actress in Hollywood, and, worse still, a troublemaker. She was personally blacklisted by Hitler in the 1930s for taking an early stand against the Nazis.
She did not help her career at the height of the Cold War by continuing to campaign for civil rights for black citizens in the South—an act equivalent of announcing she was a Communist, although in truth she remained a “moderate and moral” Roosevelt Democrat all her life.
She continued to act though, both on the big screen of movie houses and the smaller screen of television.
The 1980 film, “Just Tell Me What You Want” was her last Hollywood movie. It was probably not the career coda that she wanted, but she had moved on.
Loy lived her last years happily single in a Manhattan East Side apartment, but, friends said, she never forgot her garden in the Palisades.
The Snapchat Effect: How a Palisadian is Set to Boost Prices on theWestside
By JOHN HARLOW | Editor-in-Chief
Not that long ago, teenage wunderkind Even Spiegel was living in his parents’ basement on Toyopa in the Huntington.
Today, the 26-year-old co-founder of Snapchat, the messaging (etc.) company now called Snap, lives in Harrison Ford’s old $12 million cast-off in Brentwood with Australian model/actress Miranda Kerr.
Yep, it’s tough being a millennial tycoon, the creator of a genuine and abiding LA Westside Unicorn. But the millennials, and Generation Z behind them, love to Snap.
Unlike some high-profile tycoons, Spiegel and his team are expected to share the wealth. Until now, they have raised money through a series of private share options, valued at around $20 billion.
On Thursday, Feb. 2, Snap filed papers to move ahead with what could be the biggest IPO (Initial Public Offer, or share sale) ever for a Los Angeles company.
This is an increasingly rare event. The Wall Street Journal has fretted that the lack of such public share sales in favor of private bank funding deals is locking middle-class America out of the stock market.
And, although no price has yet been set, it could raise $25 billion for the Palisadian and his 1,800 employees working here on the Westside.
This could create a mini-housing boom, or at least a positive ripple, out as far as the 405.
Its epicenter would be two cities away, in Venice, where Snap has been snapping up commercial and residential property almost wholesale throughout 2016.
(If it does not make it as an IPO, Snap sure could get rich as a landlord.)
If the IPO happens over the next few weeks it could produce hundreds, if not thousands, of millennial millionaires working at the Snap HQ on the beach and lodging in “dorms”—effectively—owned by Spiegel and pals across Venice and Santa Monica.
These worker bees will want their own places and with their work hours don’t like commuting.
Never got the habit.
Might have been different if the Expo Line had not swerved away off Venice Boulevard into Santa Monica, a decision horribly out of date by the time the rail arrived.
So where will the newly minted “techbros” be looking to buy?
They will start in the once-bland Millward Avenue in Venice, if only because that is where British actress Emilia Clark has put down $4.3 million for a place whose major selling point was wall-to-ceiling book cases. (Only in Venice. Who else has time to read?) Very different from the pyramid she currently occupies as blonde dragon queen Daenerys Targaryen in HBO’s “Game of Thrones.”
How could well-heeled fan boys resist?
Some snappers will also be looking for something funkier and more modern than a 50-story pyramid, suggested the Hollywood Reporter, such as the $5.7 million Wave House up for sale on Morningside Way, a golf swing away from the greens where Ford crashed a vintage plane. Or the equally-adventurous black-tinted home next door.
The Wave House is being handled by Tami Pardee, a co-founder at Halton Pardee + Partners, who said that the new millionaires are going to pace their spending, as there is a shortage of suitable homes in Venice or even next door in Santa Monica, Mar Vista and Playa Del Rey, but she is looking out for the right place for a number of Snap employees.
A typical Snap home may be a $4.4-million, Marmol Radziner-designed home near Abbot Kinney, once a good/bad neighborhood borderline but now so hip it’s being replaced by Rose to the north.
The 3,600-square-foot home hits all the marks. They are not looking for McMansions.
“Engineer types tend to buy smaller houses. They are not used to the flash—it’s a personality thing. They are looking for ‘soulful’ homes,” Pardee said.
The limits? Because Venice was created a century ago for fairground workers, houses tend to be smaller than elsewhere on the Westside, so need redevelopment.
Restrained elegant redevelopment, with eco-friendly yet green backyards.
They want turnkey homes, and where to look for that?
Well, the Palisades has some fantastic smaller homes, and a 30-minute commute along the Pacific could, for Spiegel’s people, bring it all back home.
Meet Cristian David: Realtor, Writer, Bon Vivant
By CRISTIAN DAVID | Special to the Palisadian-Post
It is so nice to finally meet you!
When I moved to Los Angeles in the winter of 2011, I knew very little about Pacific Palisades. I knew nothing about its history or points of interests. It wasn’t until later I became aware of its transcendent beauty as I drove my car through the picturesque coastal hills spreading their gentle highlands into the Pacific Ocean. It was quite breathtaking.
As the vice president and brokerage manager of the local branch of the Sotheby’s International Realty, I am the official “envoy” appointed to this office to specially strengthen the relationships between Sotheby’s and the Pacific Palisades and its esteemed residents. It is quite an honor to be able to represent an institution whose brand heritage dates all the way back to 1744, centuries before the Palisades was born.
What would Pacific Palisades want to know about me? I grew up in Bucharest, the capital of Romania, and, to the surprise of many, the language spoken in Romania is not Russian. Romania, a small country in the center of Eastern Europe, has its own very beautiful language. Romania is unique in that it is the only Eastern-Block country that speaks a Romance language. Historians trace the origin of Romania back 2,000 years, when it was occupied by a civilization known as the Dacians (pronounced “dachyanz”).
During the seventh century and throughout the ninth century, the Slavs came to the Dacia area. Their language greatly influenced the Romanians. This is an important point, because not only did the Dacians adopt Slavonisms, but the Slavs learned Latin. In the first half of the 19th century, however, there began an “Enlightenment,” and books from the west by authors such as Racine, Moliere and Lamartine were translated into Romanian.
Romanian language continues to change, even now. As all languages do, it borrows many words from other languages, especially French. Since its Communist Revolution in 1989, Romania has been opened to a whole world that they only could have imagined before. They are now (as most European countries are) influenced greatly by American English. On any given Friday, a Romanian could wish you a “week-end bun” meaning, “good weekend.”
As a young man in the pursuit of happiness, I left Romania in 1994 to explore new opportunities in the land of the free. My first stop was the snowy cold city of Buffalo, where winter comes and stays for over eight months of the year. Then I was accepted into the Theatre Management MBA program at CUNY. I didn’t blink twice before packing my bags to move to New York City. I was getting closer to achieving my dream of becoming a theater producer. My life in the “City That Never Sleeps” was all about the long-hour management/producing work on and off Broadway shows and the massive university curriculum.
Upon graduation, I moved to Philadelphia, which was my home for over 13 years. The history of this magnificent city was quite remarkable. A lot of significant life-changing experiences happened while I lived in Philly. One was my career change from serving the community as a fundraiser and marketer for various nonprofit art organizations, including one of the largest and oldest theater companies in the world, to devoting myself to the eccentric world of real estate. It was in Philadelphia that I learned something tremendously important about myself: the importance of being strongly tied to a community.
This is something that I learned very early on about Pacific Palisades. The community here is strongly connected. This may be due to its earliest residents, the intellectual and artist expatriates who were leaving Nazi Germany. They settled here because there was a community called the “Weimar by the Sea” that allowed them to be themselves. I am positive that the climate may have had something to do with it as well.
It is the air of Pacific Palisades that attracts so many families who wish to raise their children in this pleasant and safe environment. It is no surprise that many of the country’s millionaires—and some of the world’s billionaires—settle here. The breath-taking ocean views from the top of the majestic hills are highly regarded factors in purchasing or selling homes in the Palisades.
Now that you know a little more about me, I look forward to immersing myself in the Palisades’ culture and community. I plan on getting to know many of the residents and readers of the Palisadian-Post through your stories and values. Although, I may have come from a place far from you, Pacific Palisades, I feel strongly that we have a lot in common, don’t you?
To reach Cristian David, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Former Reagan Home Price Reduced to $25 Million
By SARAH SHMERLING | Managing Editor
The former Riviera home of the Reagan family is pending sale, with the listing showing a price tag of nearly $25 million—$8 million lower from the price it went on the market with in early 2016.
This was the home where on Nov. 4, 1980, then-California Governor Ronald Reagan received a call from Jimmy Carter, who said, “Mr. Reagan? Congratulations. You’re president of the United States.”
Legend has it, Ronald was in the shower and his wife Nancy was in the bath when the phone rang. Nancy answered it and handed him the phone.
“Regan came to own the home after falling in love with the rugged and then rather isolated mountainous area of Pacific Palisades,” a Daily Mail article read.
With seven bedrooms and nine-and-a-half baths, the Spanish Eclectic home boasts “spectacular views from downtown to Catalina,” according to realtor.com.
The property combines new construction with old-world craftsmanship, originally built in 1956 and purchased by developers for a little over $5 million in 2012—when the home was 4,700-square-foot and a single story.
According to the listing, the home features a grand, two-story entry, expansive living room, pro screening room, formal dining and paneled library—all open to panoramic views.
The home is represented by Kurt Rappaport at Westside Estate Agency.
Beloved Rock Manager Sells Up in Rivas Canyon
By JOHN HARLOW | Editor-in-Chief
In rock mythology there are two styles of music management: the monsters and the losers.
The monsters, like Peter Grant of Led Zeppelin, are beloved by their band and feared by everyone else. The losers end up getting sued.
In truth, there is a third way, exemplified by a handful of music label executives such as Ahmet Ertegun, founder of Atlantic Records, David Geffen and Chris Blackwell, who introduced the world to Bob Marley and reggae.
They stood up for the musical statement, sometimes even against the musicians who were creating it. They are later thanked for it, if begrudgingly.
Mo Ostin of Reprise Records and Warner Music is one of these music industry heroes, regarded as maybe the most talent-friendly record boss in pop history. Now, at 89, he is leaving us—Ostin has sold up in the Palisades.
The Ostin family trust has sold Ostin’s home on Villa Woods Drive, located off Will Rogers State Park Road, for $4.86 million. The 4,800-square-foot contemporary home was listed last April for $5.9 million, but has now sold to an undisclosed buyer.
The five-bedroom, five-bathroom home was listed by Dena Luciano and Tracy Maltas of Douglas Elliman. Guy Reid of Engel & Volkers represented the buyer.
The family trust has another Ostin home on the market: a $19 million, seven-bedroom, eight-bathroom mansion off River Road in Brentwood.
In recent years, Ostin, while still on the board of the USC and UCLA schools of music, has also been spending time in his native New York. This is where Ostin’s career took off in 1960, when Frank Sinatra asked him to run his newly established label, Reprise Records.
It was unusual in that the artists would retain complete creative control of their output and ownership of their own recordings, an economic handcuff for a record company that would have scared off any other manager less artist-friendly than Ostin.
He did it on his own creative terms: He persuaded Sinatra to sign rock bands to Reprise, despite his personal antipathy toward their raucous behavior. His fears were justified when Ostin signed British group The Kinks, who were then banned by the American Federation of Musicians union from touring the U.S. for years for loutish behavior.
One of his jobs, Ostin recalled, was preventing “The Chairman of the Board” (now literally true, as well as a Sinatra nickname) from releasing a truly terrible reading of Rudyard Kipling’s “Gunga Din.” Sinatra lost his temper, of course, but in the end, when the record was already at the distribution depots, he pulled it back.
History repeats itself: 10 years later, permanently grumpy Neil Young, another Ostin protégée who wrote a song called “Surfer Joe and Moe the Sleaze,” did not like a mix on a 1978 album called “Comes a Time” and demanded that the run of albums was destroyed.
Again, a decade later, for Prince’s disco-themed “Black Album:” Great music, Ostin said, but Prince wanted to be heard in discos at a time Ostin was trying to promote his “Sign o’ The Times” album. So Ostin had to persuade Prince to at least postpone releasing the “Black Album.”
If Prince rather than Ostin had had his way, the Purple One’s might have flooded and confused his fans and career might have tanked right there.
Later on, Prince would fight in court with Ostin, alleging his contract reduced him to a “slave,” which “bugged” Ostin, as he valued his reputation as musician-friendly, but he still misses Prince’s raw talent.
From the late 1960s, when Ostin helped sell Reprise to Warner Music, where he became boss, to the mid-1990s, the Burbank-based label fostered the careers of Jimi Hendrix, Joni Mitchell, Van Morrison, various versions of Fleetwood Mac, Van Halen, The Grateful Dead, R.E.M, The Red Hot Chili Peppers and (Palisadian) Randy Newman. Not a bad record.
Many of them turned up in 2003 when Ostin was admitted to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
Ostin is still around Los Angeles, but he is leaving some painful memories behind in the Palisades.
He loved the house, but years ago he willed it over to his son Randall, a Palisades Charter High School alum.
“Randy” was another famously decent music business mover and shaker who helped The Eagles create “Hotel California.”
As a promoter, Randy helped create big huts for Jackson Brown, Linda Ronstadt and Queen. But Randy died from cancer in 2013, and friends suggested his father never felt at home in the Palisades after that.
And so another musical page in Palisadian history, expressed through real estate, is turned.
Q&A: Marco Rufo—Pacific Palisades Real Estate Market: ‘Where Are We?’
By MARCO RUFO | Special to the Palisadian-Post
It is amazing what transpired in January: 18 single-family homes sold in Pacific Palisades, compared with a monthly average of about 12 homes sold the past four years.
Is the market softening?
Depends who you ask. The lower-end market—properties sold for $1.8 to $4 million—absolutely has not; if anything we do not have enough inventory to sustain the demand. The market however has softened, particularly at the top. So for those properties selling from $5 million and up, which consist of 24 currently active homes for sale out of the 58 total, has become markedly harder to sell.
Is it the right time to sell?
It is a prime time to sell your home, especially those in the low end of the market.
The New Year kicked off with a record low number of homes for sale. According to the California Association of Realtors, the number of homes for sale in December 2016 was down nearly five percent from the same time last year, while the number of homes sold was up nearly eight percent.
What checklist should I have before I sell?
Here are some basic ideas:
Curb Appeal: Make sure your exterior is manicured, from the grass to the paint on the home.
Garage: If you’re a packrat, get a dumpster and get rid of all the old junk taking up space in your garage. Buyers need to see that their cars will fit in the space.
Kitchen: Determine whether you really need those items on the counter (e.g. blender, canisters, rooster, etc.) Put them away or pack them away. You now have much more usable counter space and buyers will notice.
Bathrooms: Thoroughly clean mirrors, glass, chrome and porcelain surfaces. If you have grout, then scrub away.
Closets: Pack away everything that you are not going to need for the next few months. Neatly store in boxes.
Overall: Check all the basics around the house—all doors, windows and cabinets. Apply fresh paint where needed. Carpets, draperies and furniture should all be professionally cleaned and looking their best. Does your home smell pleasant? Place diffusers or air fresheners with a pleasant and mild scent around your home. First impression is everything.
What are would-be Palisadian’s looking for that they were not looking for a year ago?
Many buyers today believe they can purchase a house with the intent of improving it and, when selling it, making a profit. Such attitudes have increased exponentially from a year ago. I personally believe it due to all the remodeling shows on TV.
Other buyers are the ones that want to see the new construction. As you drive down many of the streets in the Palisades you see enormous amount of building, which is not an accident—demand is higher today than a year ago. It encourages others to buy.
What style of homes are likely to be hottest in 2017?
What displays an overwhelming favoritism is Traditional- and Cape Cod-style homes with translational to modern interiors. Second favorites are: sleek contemporary designs and open floorplan concept. Homeowners are beginning to opt for more environmentally friendly and sustainable design elements in their houses.
Advice for a first-time seller?
Understanding how important it is to prepare a home for the open real estate market.
Have a home inspection completed before the house is listed for sale.
Prepare your home for the market by making low-cost home improvements before listing the home for sale (e.g. paint, cleaning, repairing/replacing grout, etc.)
Understanding what the current state is of your local real estate market.
Figure out what your next move is after selling their current home. Will you move into an apartment/condo? Will you be buying a new home? Moving to another state? It’s important when selling a home for the first time, you have a strong game plan for your next move.
Understand the costs associated in the sale of a property.
Hire the right professional real estate agent for the job and make sure it’s priced correctly.
In closing, I would characterize the real estate market for the 2017 forecast as a moderation, as opposed to an acceleration, in the market. The pace of growth is still strong and, for pricing, still represents an above-average level of appreciation.
HOME SPOTLIGHT: Martha’s Vineyard Lighthouse
Rarely does a property of such presence and privacy become available for sale. Echoing the essence of Martha’s Vineyard, the Red Door Homes team introduce their latest jewel. The large 9,763-square-foot lot provides 180 degree Pacific Ocean vistas with easy access to the beach. The private yard is perfect for coastal and relaxed entertaining. Private and refined, this 4,582 +/- square foot has 5 bedrooms and 4.5 baths. Amenities include; a large formal living room with ocean views, paneled formal dining room, custom wood and millwork throughout, bespoke fixtures and fittings, modern gourmet kitchen with adjacent morning room, open family area with fireplace and oversized french doors open to private backyard. Top floor hosts the master retreat, spa-like soaking tub and panoramic water views for a private sanctuary in your own home. This estate is ideally located, minutes from the Palisades Village and embodies true California Coastal lifestyle. Accepting backup offers.
Address: 16665 Linda Terrace, Pacific Palisades, CA 90272
Realtors: Marco Rufo