Welcome back to the real estate newsletter. As the Olympics draw to a close and world records come first, the Southern California real estate market itself has broken some records.
The first record fell in Los Angeles, where a two-bedroom condominium was traded for $ 13 million. At just 2,681 square feet, that adds up to a staggering $ 4,848 per square foot, by far the most expensive sale per square foot in LA history. While the unit itself is relatively small, it has laundry facilities with amenities and a private deck that overlooks the Sunset Strip.
The second went down in Pebble Beach, where an oceanfront property overlooking the famous golf course sold for $ 32.69 million, the highest price in Monterey County’s history. It is stealing the crown from another home in the same neighborhood that cost $ 31.25 million in 2014.
All the record that sparked some ambitious offers, like this magnificent Irvine mansion that went up for sale for $ 50 million. It’s owned by Joni Rogers-Kante, founder of multilevel marketing makeup firm SeneGence International, and if she gets her price, she’ll have by far the most expensive home sale ever in Irvine.
You’ve seen what can be built in seemingly limitless acreage across Southern California. Now, take a look at what can be squeezed into a tiny back yard in Elysian Heights where a filmmaker commissioned a bespoke “work-from-home den” with a scalloped parapet and hidden rooftop deck. It covers a modest 480 square meters, but the writing studio saves space for outstanding design and playful accents.
Now a little detour into the less sexy part of real estate: taxes. The Times investigated a dubious practice in which tax officials file tens of thousands of requests for property revaluations and lower taxes, requiring investigation by a dozen people and costing taxpayers more than $ 2.2 million annually.
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Two WeHo condominiums make history
A two-bedroom apartment in Pendry Residences West Hollywood sold for $ 13 million, a record $ 4,848 per square foot.
The pandemic did not kill vertical life in LA, it only delayed it.
In Pendry Residences West Hollywood, a 2,681-square-foot apartment overlooking the Sunset Strip just sold for $ 13 million. That’s the highest price per square foot in LA history at $ 4,848, beating the previous record of $ 3,858, according to the Multiple Listing Service.
A second, slightly larger unit in the same building recently closed for $ 13.3 million, which equates to a price per square meter of just under $ 4,500. Both sales, which have been some of the most expensive condo deals in recent years, are evidence of growing demand for luxury vertical living, even as buyers headed for single-family homes in search of space and privacy due to the pandemic.
The condos are two of 40 that will slowly hit the market over the next year in Pendry Residences West Hollywood, a new hotel and condominium hybrid opened by Montage Hotels & Resorts. The $ 500 million complex, built on the former site of the House of Blues, is one of several projects coming to the Sunset Strip as developers seek to convert buyers from their single-family homes into luxury, high-end condos Lure amenities.
Another record falls in Pebble Beach
The 10,000 square meter Mediterranean mansion includes a putting green, a chipping area and a golf simulation room.
(Sotheby’s International Realty)
Monterey County saw its most expensive ever sale when a coastal lot overlooking the Pebble Beach Golf Links traded for $ 32.69 million.
It beats the previous record of 2014 when a mansion in the same parish sold for $ 31.25 million, records show.
This belonged to Michael Fitzpatrick, former president and CEO of San Jose-based fiber optic company E-TEK Dynamics. He listed the mansion for $ 37.5 million in May and found a buyer just two weeks later, according to the Multiple Listing Service.
With a view of the sea and the 13th fairway, the Mediterranean mansion keeps the golf theme going with its own putting green, chipping area and golf simulation room. There is also a billiards room, bar, wine cellar, fitness room, cinema and greenhouse on more than 10,000 square meters.
Cosmetics mogul has its own record in mind
The 13,000-square-meter mansion includes an award-winning theater, billiards room, sauna, massage room, driving range, and pool with a diving system.
In Irvine, the SeneGence-built house just hit the market for $ 49.95 million. If sold anywhere nearby, it will be the largest residential real estate deal in city history and one of the most expensive real estate deals of all time in Orange County.
The spacious property belongs to Joni Rogers-Kante. She is the founder and CEO of SeneGence International, a multi-level cosmetics company headquartered a few miles away on the Foothill Ranch.
The 13,000-square-foot showroom is equipped with virtually every imaginable amenity and was originally designed for Sporttalk radio host Jim Rome, who sold it to Rogers-Edge in 2017 for the then record value of $ 12.5 million over the past four years and now includes seven bedrooms, 12 bathrooms and oversized living spaces with Venetian masonry, ornate millwork and custom ceiling paintings.
Work from home in style
Designed by Chris Skeens and Ben Warwas, Stiff Peaks writing studio has a hidden rooftop terrace overlooking DTLA.
Hoping to create a writing studio as unique as her home in Elysian Heights, filmmaker Jane Stephens Rosenthal asked two architects to come up with something fresh and new for her garden, writes Lisa Boone.
“I wanted my own space to work,” says Rosenthal, who is working on a coming-of-age feature. “But I also wanted to keep this bizarre atmosphere.”
The result? The ultimate WFH cave, a product of intensive collaboration between artist, designer and architect. After 12 months of work held up by significant delays due to COVID-19, they christened the new writing studio “Stiff Peaks” to recognize its most dramatic feature – a scalloped parapet resembling whipped egg whites and clad a rooftop terrace on which Rosenthal can catch a few rays and is not seen by her neighbors on the hill next door.
Objection to property tax costs the taxpayer
In recent years, the district assessor’s office has faced a flurry of appeals from homeowners to property valuations and lower taxes.
(Dave Cutler / For the Times)
The typical Los Angeles county home is valued at nearly $ 817,000, 22 percent more than last year, according to the county assessor’s office, writes business columnist David Lazarus.
In recent years, however, the county assessment has seen a flurry of appeals from homeowners for property upgrades and lower taxes.
And, says County Assessor Jeff Prang, many, if not most, of those tens of thousands of appeals are filed in bulk by just a handful of enterprising accountants in hopes of cutting any reductions they can impose on clients.
“I would call it a scam, but it’s not a scam,” Prang told me. “It’s legal.”
Prang estimates that he will have to employ about a dozen people to handle, investigate, and potentially contest all of these complaints, which costs taxpayers $ 2.2 million annually.
What we read
Ozawa Boarding House in East Hollywood was one of many boarding houses to open in the early 20th century. Now the humble property has been nominated as a Historic Landmark after tenant rights activists and a Hollywood protection group worried about its future, reports EastsiderLA.
The cheerful Dallas real estate listing proclaims “A property like no other!” Oh yeah. The large brick home, which is listed for nearly $ 1 million, looks conventional on the outside but doesn’t appear to have bedrooms or see-through windows, Inman said. Listing photos show windowless, warehouse-like rooms with fluorescent tubes and filled with metal shelves.