Saturday, November 03, 2007

Los Angeles County South Bay Beach Cities Real Estate $$$ Transacted for October 2007

Local realtors can say all they want about how the pricey beach areas and the westside are immune to a real estate slump, but that was certainly not the case in October, which turned out to be the sickest looking month in quite a while.

Of all the zip codes I cover in southwest Los Angeles County west of the 110 freeway and south of the 10 freeway, the following areas roughly match their dollar volumes from October 2006: 90034 - Palms; 90066 - Mar Vista; 90404 - Santa Monica, and the following areas comfortably exceed their dollar volumes from October 2006: 90045 - Westchester; 90094 - Playa Vista; 90254 - Hermosa Beach; 90402 - Santa Monica; and 90501 - Torrance. Everywhere else, October 2007's dollar volume was noticeably down from October 2006. 90064 - Rancho Park, has been on steroids this year but even that area is starting to turn down.

A lot of realtors must be doing something besides selling real estate in order to make ends meet. In my household we have joked for years about how the beach cities economy relies on people selling each other real estate and teaching each other yoga, but there is an element of truth to it.

It is probably safe to say that the affluent are still affluent, and their sources of mortgage funding, should they want it, are still around. If that is true, and they haven't lost a significant portion of their net worth in some hedge fund or private equity blowup, and they still have the bucks, then maybe some of the affluent areas slumped in October for some reason besides lack of funds. Could it be that a deflationary psychological mindset about the housing market is starting to spread, like a virus?

October looked so bad that I think we're due to see full page NAR ads again about what a great time it is to buy a house. I'm also wondering if more credit will imminently materialize out of thin air to pump some oomph back into this market - after all that seems to have been our solution over recent decades, to throw more credit at whatever financial problem roils the country and the world. And with an election year coming, I'm just going to have to get some barf bags and brace myself for what I expect to hear being spewed out of Washington.

In the charts below, notice the YOY line for the beach cities has now gone negative again. Redondo Beach YOY is still above 0% but pointing down. The entire southwest L.A. County area in general remains sick.

105 beach cities properties were sold in October versus 154 October 2006. 64 Redondo Beach properties were recorded by Melissa Data as sold in October versus 97 October 2006. As for new inventory, I managed to find 82 new properties listed in Redondo Beach for October, which obviously has not done anything to erase any "psychological overhang" of unsold properties, even if they are not still listed. I suppose we'll be hearing about a great spring 2008, with lots of "pent-up buying demand", but so far they haven't talked about "pent-up selling demand."

It's hard to believe that the end of this month will mark the 2 year anniversary of this blog. And it's even harder to believe that I got so fed up with what I was seeing in my neighborhood that I started collecting housing sale data - back in early 2002!

YOY Comparisons

Compares a moving average of $$$ volume to the prior year - a measure of Acute Pain.

Realtors fat and happy...
90094         53.2% Playa Vista
90064         43.6% Rancho Park/Cheviot Hills
90293         37.9% Playa del Rey
90254         23.5% Hermosa Beach
90291         19.2% Venice
90275          8.6% Palos Verdes Estates

Not too shabby...
90505          6.8% Torrance
90277          6.3% Redondo Beach (south)

Hanging in there...
90277-90278    1.4% Redondo Beach combined
90732          0.6% San Pedro/Rancho PV

Losing a grip...
90278         -2.3% Redondo Beach (north)
90008         -5.9% Baldwin Hills / Leimart Park
beach cities  -7.6% 4 Beach Cities combined
90292         -9.4% Marina del Rey

Slip sliding away...
90045        -12.6% Westchester
90034        -13.0% Palms
90503        -15.3% Torrance
90066        -17.4% Mar Vista
90036        -18.3% Park La Brea
SW county    -18.3% Southwest L.A. County
90266        -18.5% Manhattan Beach
90035        -19.8% West Fairfax
90401-90405  -20.7% Santa Monica combined
90230        -21.2% Culver City
90019        -23.1% Country Club Park/Mid City
90232        -27.0% Culver City
90717        -28.5% Lomita
90250        -29.2% Hawthorne

Sliding over a cliff...
90501-90505  -32.1% Torrance Combined
90007        -33.6% South Central
90504        -41.4% Torrance
90056        -42.0% Ladera Heights
90245        -43.2% El Segundo
90016        -43.4% West Adams
90501        -47.5% Torrance

Off the cliff, Thelma and Louise style...
90047        -51.8% South Central
90745        -52.1% Carson
90302        -53.0% Inglewood
90044        -56.4% Athens
90260        -58.5% Lawndale
90304        -58.6% Lennox
90249        -58.7% Gardena
90303        -59.6% Inglewood
90062        -61.4% South Central
90301        -62.5% Inglewood
90746        -62.5% Carson
90043        -63.8% Hyde Park, Windsor Hills
90018        -66.0% Jefferson Park
90301-90305  -66.1% Inglewood/Lennox combined
90502        -67.5% Torrance
90037        -70.5% South Central
90305        -78.5% Inglewood
90744       -160.8% Wilmington

"Relative Strength"

A longer-term view of the strength of dollar volume, with 4.6 being the strongest (suffering the least amount of chronic pain) and 0.1 being the weakest (suffering the most chronic pain). Think of it is as the positive area of the YOY graph with the negative area of the YOY graph subtracted out.

90094            4.6 Playa Vista
90305            3.1 Inglewood
90044            2.0 Athens
90034            1.9 Palms
90746            1.8 Carson
90292            1.6 Marina del Rey
90047            1.3 South Central
90062            1.3 South Central
90301-90305      1.3 Inglewood/Lennox combined
90502            1.2 Torrance
90304            1.2 Lennox
90018            1.2 Jefferson Park
90007            1.1 South Central
90303            1.1 Inglewood
90745            1.1 Carson
90302            1.0 Inglewood
90016            1.0 West Adams
90301            1.0 Inglewood
90250            1.0 Hawthorne
90037            0.9 South Central
90043            0.9 Hyde Park, Windsor Hills
90732            0.8 San Pedro/Rancho PV
90019            0.8 Country Club Park/Mid City
90249            0.8 Gardena
90293            0.7 Playa del Rey
90501            0.7 Torrance
90260            0.7 Lawndale
90230            0.7 Culver City
SW county        0.7 Southwest L.A. County
90503            0.7 Torrance
90008            0.6 Baldwin Hills / Leimart Park
90291            0.6 Venice
90064            0.5 Rancho Park/Cheviot Hills
90501-90505      0.5 Torrance Combined
90036            0.5 Park La Brea
90254            0.5 Hermosa Beach
90232            0.5 Culver City
90278            0.5 Redondo Beach (north)
90045            0.5 Westchester
90245            0.5 El Segundo
90066            0.4 Mar Vista
90056            0.4 Ladera Heights
90035            0.4 West Fairfax
90277-90278      0.3 Redondo Beach combined
90717            0.3 Lomita
90505            0.3 Torrance
90401-90405      0.3 Santa Monica combined
beach cities     0.3 4 Beach Cities combined
90266            0.3 Manhattan Beach
90504            0.2 Torrance
90277            0.2 Redondo Beach (south)
90744            0.2 Wilmington
90275            0.1 Palos Verdes Estates

For details on individual zip codes, visit my regional tracker, or my Google map tool of the same data.


Blogger bearmaster said...

It looks like history is rhyming in a big way right now too. Recall that in my 3 part series about the last Great Housing Slump in Southern California, I mentioned that prescient Fred Sands urged his clients back in 1989 to "do it now" if they want to sell their houses. And then in 1992, Fred Sands wrote another letter to his clients containing a "badly needed dose of reality", telling them to either forget about selling their homes for three years or slash the price and get it sold.

Well Fred Sands has recently addressed a realty conference according to this November 3 L.A. Times story by Peter Y. Hong (Mogul's Advice to Realtors: Don't Keep Your Day Job) and he's telling realtors that if they've been barely been getting by over the last few years to think about going back to doing what they did before real estate. Yes! And he's also telling realtors to consider going to the affluent and westside areas. Buyers in these areas have been less likely to use toxic loans, but still, property values "won't escape unscathed."

Alan Long, another agent at that same conference, also urged slashing prices since rising foreclosures "could cause prices to fall 20% below 2005 levels."

Personally I think that's still too optimistic - that's already happened to some places in Redondo Beach. But at least industry leaders are getting up in front of the throngs now and telling them what they should have been telling them 18 months ago. Oh well.

7:38 AM, November 05, 2007  

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