El Camino Village a Great Alternative For South Bay Home Buyers

By Keith KyleExterior-2

For many home buyers searching in Redondo Beach and Torrance, finding a single family home in their price range is often not possible.  An alternative to these more expensive areas is a small community locally known as El Camino Village, located near the El Camino City College.  The community name is somewhat made up as it actually consists of 2 different cities, Lawndale and Gardena, but has helped create a nice community feel not shared with some other areas of the same cities.  El Camino Village is a bordered by Prairie to the west, Marine to the north, Manhattan Beach Blvd to the south and Crenshaw to the east.

What makes the area fairly unique is that zoning only allows for single family homes and with elementary schools located within walking distance, the area has a very nice look and feel.  The Lawndale and Gardena neighborhoods do not actually connect and are divided by an aquaduct with the Lawndale side having a bit more of a uniform feel and home values being slightly higher.

Home prices have risen rapidly in 2014 with the smaller 3 bed/1 bath homes starting in the low to mid $400’s and larger or upgraded homes quickly reaching into the mid $500’s.

Current El Camino Village and Bodger Park Homes for Sale

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(all data current as of 10/27/2021)

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Why Homes are More Expensive in South Redondo than North Redondo Beach

Why South Redondo Homes Cost More than North Redondo Homes

For buyers (and sometimes even sellers) unfamiliar with the differences in local market in the South Bay, Redondo Beach is just one single real estate market.  In reality the differences between neighborhoods can be significant and home values and prices show a clear distinction between similar homes in North Redondo and South Redondo.    The city has a number of distinctive neighborhoods but the main sections are broken into North and South and the dividing line is basically 190th Street.  North Redondo is quite a bit less expensive due to the location as it sits behind Hermosa and Manhattan Beach so there are no homes with ocean views and the feel of the area is different as it’s not along the water.  South Redondo ends at the beach and the ocean to the west and has a unique beach charm and homes often have great views.  The recent listings and sales of very similar homes, both in terms of style, layout, size and new construction, make clear the differences in values.

Below is a map showing the general layout, location and dividing lines between north and south Redondo Beach Redondo Beach Real Estate Map Areas 151-154 are North Redondo and 155-157 are South Redondo[/caption]

Fusion townhomes show just how the market has changed

Often when we look at the broader world of the real estate market it’s hard to notice just how dramatic a shift can be. It’s equally amazing just how quickly we forget the market we just left…as if we’ll never be back. I focus much of my attention in terms of marketing, selling and blogging about a small gated community in the Hollyglen known as Fusion South Bay. It’s just a pocket of newer townhomes in the South Bay but nowhere have I seen a more drastic turnaround and the implications it has had. I sold a few units at the height of the market and have struggled with the fact that values went down so dramatically and so quickly. As they were constructed in 2005-2007 almost every buyer was truly buying at the peak of the market. The result was a % of short sales and foreclosures not seen anywhere else in the area. Less than a year ago almost 75% of the closed sales were short sales and values plummeted. I showed most of them and, at the time, I almost felt as though you couldn’t give them away….no buyer motivation, no sense of urgency and most of those buyers are probably now kicking themselves. It was truly a buyers market.

Just a year later and oh how the real estate world has changed. Units that had been in the low $300,000s are now in the mid to high $400,000s and buyers are lining up for the next owner that decides to sell.   At the moment the one 2 bedroom home for sale, the smallest floor plan in Fusion, is listed at the same price that a 3 bedroom sold for just a year earlier.  Those clients that had bought a few years back are once again looking good and those that didn’t purchase at the bottom when they had the chance are certainly wishing they had. In one short year this micro market has gone from barely being able to give away these townhomes, to having buyers and agents eagerly searching off market for the chance to own one.

My how quickly things change and how quickly we forget where we just were.

 

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June 2013 Home Sales in the South Bay

The June home sales numbers are in and once again it was a very big month for home prices as many areas reached multi year highs onceRedondo Beach home for sale again.  The beach cities saw very high median home prices as many luxury properties sold at prices unseen in the past.  Click on the links below to view the home sales for various South Bay cities.

June 2013 Home Sales
El Segundo
Gardena
Hawthorne
Hermosa Beach
Hollyglen
Hollywood Riviera
Lawndale
Manhattan Beach
Palos Verdes Estates
Rancho Palos Verdes
North Redondo Beach
South Redondo Beach
San Pedro
Southwood, West & South Torrance

Hermosa Beach Sand Section Home Prices Reaching New Levels

Although median prices in a luxury market such as the Hermosa Beach sand section can vary dramatically due to one or two oceanfront home listings on The Strand, the median home prices for active listings has reached record highs.  The sand section of Hermosa Beach is the area closest to the ocean and is bordered by Manhattan Beach to the north, the streets of Valley/Ardmore to the east, and Redondo Beach to the south.  There are numerous housing options ranging from magnificent Strand homes, to “walkstreet” homes with an alley in the back but a pedestrian only sidewalk in the front, to endless ocean view condos, townhomes and single family.  In general prices are higher north of Pier Avenue.

According to local realtor and Hermosa Beach resident Keith Kyle with South Bay Brokers “the homes active on the market are almost all exclusively very high end luxury homes and we’ve reach a median home price never seen before.”  The current median home price for all types of active homes is at $3,749,000.  This in a town where the median prices have hovered in the $1.1M-$1.2M in general for the past few years.  There are many factors at the moment including a number of ocean front homes including 2666 The Strand, an oceanfront estate priced at a whopping $15,900,000 (incredibly it was raised from it’s original $13,900,000), 718 The Strand at $6,300,000 and 5 other homes priced over $4.0M with 3 walkstreet homes for sale.

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Oh this crazy market……how home prices are getting out of control

Chart-UpwardI often tell my statistically driven friends and clients that although “trendlines” and statistical data can help explain what is happening and what may happen in real estate, it often overlooks a very key piece of the puzzle. Unlike other products people buy and sell, home sales are often driven by both emotion and perception. It was only a few months back when the perception was that prices would continue to be flat, or even go down slightly, and the biggest challenge I faced was convincing buyers that now was a good time to buy.

Oh how things have changed in such a short time. Very quickly the market shifted to favor sellers and as soon as buyers decided that they may miss their opportunity, things have quickly gotten out of control. Low inventory, low interest rates, short sale and REO “deals” drying up, and pressure from large investors buying and flipping everything they could find has made it almost impossible to buy a home. How quickly we forget all that created the bubble in the first place and buyers are now chasing homes, overbidding, paying too much, waiving the appraisal and just about everything else that once again appears unsustainable.

In my own personal experience the last 4 offers I have put in for homes in Manhattan Beach and Redondo Beach have required that my buyers waive their appraisal contingency….the sellers knowing full well that the home wouldn’t appraise. No doubt this is great for sellers, but again it appears unsustainable and will likely cause problems in the near future.   We’ll likely continue to see this incredible turnaround until inventory and interest rates move away from near record lows.  I’m looking forward to the days of a balanced market, in which well priced homes sell quickly and buyers have a chance of paying market value.   In the mean time, if I were a  South Bay home seller who had given some thought to list my home…..it doesn’t get much better than this.

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