The Rule of “If You Can, You Should”

When it comes to real estate, and in particular buying your first home, the prevailing rule of thumb is if you can, you should. We have all heard a real estate agent say, “Now is the time to buy!” but to be honest, that has always been the case (with the exception of 2008). This rule is magnified in Southern California where buying a single family residence will immediately begin rising in value.

Touched upon in an earlier blog post, Los Angeles is seeing some unprecedented growth among its population, and real estate development is struggling to keep up. The LA Times did a study on San Diego homes, a city where unemployment is down and wages are going up but homes are not easy to come by. This past year a vast majority of new development was for rent, not for sale. They are making a push for new development of condo units and townhouses with streamlined permit processes and lowering parking restrictions, amongst other things.

You can, and should, expect similar actions to take place in Los Angeles. Average home prices in Los Angeles went up 7.5% in October alone, which drives home the point: if you buy a house in Los Angeles, it can go up in value every month. Thus putting more weight behind ‘If you can, you should’ because being stuck on the other side of home ownership just means houses will continue to get more expensive.

Los Angeles on the Rise

There are a lot of big things happening in Los Angeles in the coming years, many of which will have an affect on the housing market. Let’s take a look at some big events on the horizon as well as a new study:

First up, a brand new NFL stadium and future home to the Rams and Chargers is under construction in Inglewood. But this is not just a stadium; this is a massive development that will include numerous businesses open seven days a week, not just Sunday. The city of Inglewood is looking to vastly improve public transportation and build out new housing and retail in the Crenshaw/Inglewood intersection. They expect smaller developments to pop up along Imperial as well.

The stadium was pushed back a year due to last winter’s heavy rain fall and is expected to officially open for the 2020 NFL season. This gives Inglewood city officials time to make a decision in early 2018, giving them two years to line everything up for the new stadium. Get more details from the original story.

Next up, and much more far off, is the 2028 Summer Olympics to be hosted in Los Angeles. The 2028 Olympics will have a similar effect as the NFL stadium but it will envelope a much larger chunk of LA. Mayor Eric Garcetti has his “28 by 28” plan that looks to accelerate 28 transportation projects before the 2028 Olympics. Additionally, this correlates well with Garcetti’s goal of reaching 100,000 new housing units by 2021, which is already two-thirds complete.

Big sporting events and lots of housing developments but do we really need all of that? A new study makes a pretty good argument in favor of all the development: the Southern California Association of Governments estimates an additional one million residents in Los Angeles by 2035. That’s nearly a 10% increase to the city’s 10.2 million current residents! At the very least it puts the sheer number of the housing developments into perspective.

The Worth of Home Ownership

For most first time home buyers, buying a home is just that: finding a new place to call home. But how is that different from moving from one rental to another? While it is true that home ownership can bring some woes, the positives far outpace the negatives and right here in Los Angeles one positive is really starting to pick up the pace.

When you buy a home you are not just creating a new place to call home, you are making an investment. In the Los Angeles real estate market, that investment will reward you handsomely. LA Times reports on a new study conducted by Zillow that the average seller in Los Angeles, who had owned their property for about 10 years made on average $200,000. Across the board, this came out to an average of nearly 54% gain.

In percent gain on sale, Los Angeles ranked 5th amongst a list of 33 metropolitan areas and was the third California city (behind Oakland and San Jose). So if you are in the market, whether you are a first time buyer or onto the next house, rest assured that in addition to finding a new place to call home, you have made a sound investment.

To see the whole list of cities, check out the original article on Los Angeles Times.

Why Aren’t Millennials Buying Homes?

There is a lot of speculation, conversations, and quite often, jokes made about why Millennials are not buying homes. A new study has pointed out what similar studies have been pointing out: that student loans are holding Millennials back from buying homes. And the few Millennials that are homeowners credit student loans as the main reason they don’t sell. In addition, the median income for Millennials is $38,000, and to any of you living in Los Angeles most definitely know, that salary will not afford you a house.

Just how high is the percentage of Millennials not buying houses? Here is a quote from the original article on Real Deal LA:

“A new report from the National Association of Realtors looking at student debt and housing finds that 83 percent of millennials who do not own a home cite student debt as the reason.”

The Case Study Homes

How much do you know about case study homes? Most people think it is a general term, any outstanding piece of single family residence architecture. Perhaps that is not wrong. But actually, there are the case study homes, which were commissioned by Arts & Architecture back in the 40s.

The reason for these homes? To create a new standard for post-war single family homes. Arts & Architecture outlined the study ahead of actual construction in 1945, awaiting restrictions to be lifted on certain materials (because of rationing during wartime). Originally, eight well known architects of the time would each create their own single family home with a functional design and an affordable price tag. The announcement even stated that each “house must capable of duplication and in no sense be an individual ‘performance.’ It is important that the best material available be used in the best possible way in order to arrive at a ‘good’ solution of each problem, which in the overall program will be general enough to be of practical assistance to the average American in search of a home in which he can afford to live.”

Obviously, some of the case study homes exceeded the requirements but at its inception, these were to be functional affordable homes for the average American. Over 70 years later and the fact that many of these homes are known by name and still considered exceptional, the original intent of the study fell by the wayside at some point.

If you are interested in architecture, chances are you already know about these case study homes and have even visited some of them. If you have not, you are in luck! There are 20 case study homes located in the greater Los Angeles area, and Curbed LA even mapped them out for you.

Dustin Cumming and Monty Beisel Closed 720 N. Alta Drive

720 North Alta Drive

Dustin Cumming and Monty Beisel, of Cumming, Beisel & Partners at Hilton & Hyland,  officially finalized the purchase of 720 North Alta Drive, for a listed price of $24,900,000. The duo represented the buyer, while Joyce Rey, Stephen Apelian, Kurt Rappaport and Christopher Damon represented the seller.

The beautiful Georgian Traditional new construction sits atop a 26,400 square foot lot. The spacious home boasts seven bedrooms and 14 bathrooms, and includes numerous stunning features such as the enormous master suite, a wine-tasting room and a private home gym.

“This is yet another tremendous effort from Monty and Dustin, and everyone at our firm is thrilled for them,” said Jeff Hyland at the time, who co-founded Hilton & Hyland with Rick Hilton.

Rick added, “Even with minimal movement on the market, they’ve been able to facilitate deals, and we’re very happy to have them at Hilton & Hyland.”

The original post can be found on the Hilton & Hyland blog.