The escalating prices of homes in Hancock Park and Windsor Square far outweigh what is happening in other city neighborhoods.
A recent article in the Los Angeles Times said the Southern California median price for single-family resale homes has risen 34.5 percent since bottoming out at the beginning of 2009.
In Hancock Park and Koreatown, the prices are up 85 percent, according to the article.
Coldwell Banker’s Lisa Hutchins doesn’t agree with the figures. “Many of the recent sales in the area are closer to 2007 figures in the upper price range. A house in Hancock Park that sold for $6 million in 2007 just went for almost $1 million more at the end of 2012. Homes that are selling either have a sought-after location, are on the golf course, on a large lot or are a fantastic remodel.”
Pete Buonocore of Keller Williams Larchmont, noted that every local neighborhood has sustained about a 20 percent drop from the height of the market. Given the shortage of inventory, multiple offers are driving prices back up very quickly. In some areas, Buonocore is seeing short-term prices at only four percent off of the highs. He noted that these price increases may not be sustainable and may settle down once inventory levels increase. He tells his clients to get in the market sooner rather than later. Who knows how long this will last, he adds.
There is very little inventory, agrees June Ahn of Coldwell Banker Hancock Park. She is selling some high-priced homes for over listing price with cash offers. She has had multiple offers for homes under $1 million. These were houses that sold in the $700,000 price range a few years ago.
One example of a significant increase is on a bank-owned house that sold on N. Plymouth Blvd. for $650,000 in early 2012, said Andrew Woodward of Keller Williams Larchmont. It was re-sold at the end of 2012 for $850,000 to a developer who is currently rehabbing it,
Overall, a combination of low interest rates and lack of inventory is creating a very brisk, fast-paced market. Lenders are being more cautious because they do not want to be responsible for a property in which they lent money, and buyer could not afford, Woodward added.