We’ve been talking to a seller who wants to move to Florida and to sell her house in Hancock Park for a little over 6M. Their wish at the listing appointment 2 months ago was to figure out how to circumvent the Measure ULA 4.5% increased transfer tax that started April 1. They threw out different ideas to me when we met such as: transferring title to the buyer in 2 parts and having the 2 parts owned as tenants in common so that each part sells for below the 5M ULA threshold, selling expensive furniture and art to the buyer and dropping the purchase price to below the ULA threshold, transferring the ULA obligation to the buyer, transferring the property to an entity and selling the entity instead of selling the property. Measure ULA is being contested in court and there’s a chance that it’s no longer in effect 2 years from now. These sellers concluded that it makes most sense for them to push the sale of their house for 2 years in the hopes of a much simpler sale, hopefully at that time without the almost 300,000 ULA tax bill off the top.
We’ve been talking to a buyer who wants to move from Orange County to Hancock Park and to buy a house for 5M – 6M. Friends in Orange County are saying that our buyers may not like all the homeless in LA, and they may move only to opt to move back pretty quickly to Orange County. Our buyer is afraid that if he buys a house now and he wants to in fact sell pretty quickly, Measure ULA will take an increased transfer tax of 4.5% off the top of his sale, even if he’d be losing money on the transaction without the tax. That increased transfer tax is enough for him to prefer to rent for the next 2 years in the hopes that the tax goes away and he’s less afraid to buy.
A couple is considering buying our listing at 629 S Sycamore because of its proximity to the Metro Line. The husband is a lawyer in the healthcare field and he works in DTLA. The wife is an investment advisor with Merryl Lynch and she works in Century City. Living right next to the Metro would mean that each of them would walk around the block and travel efficiently traffic-free to their job and not pay for gas or parking. Since the construction of the Metro Line began years ago, sellers have been touting that their properties were close to the station. The Wilshire/La Brea line is supposed to open some time in 2024. It’s cool that finally people are starting to value houses that are close to the station!
We put 341 N Orange Drive up for lease for 7750/mt and we were inundated with applications and showing requests. For both lease and for sale, properties that are rich with character + charm and are entirely updated and remodeled in good taste are eternally desirable and chased. Buyers and tenants flock to trophy properties always!
In 2022 we did 65 leases, most of them after interest rates shot up. This year in 2023, we’ve already done 35 leases. It makes sense for many owners to lease vs sell to hold on to their low interest rate and not to have to buy a replacement property at a high interest rate. Since our city recently enacted so many laws that are overly protective of tenants, we’ve been hyper vigilant about screening all the tenants and trying our absolute hardest to make sure to have our clients only live with tenants that it’s an honor to have in their properties. We’re trying to have landlords meet their tenants before they all commit to each other to further our goal of successful stress-free landlord/tenant arrangements.
I went to a birthday brunch this week for a good friend. A friend of the birthday girl called and asked if I could write and print an ode to our mutual friend, starting with a spiritual thought and ending with the qualities that make this friend special to each guest invited to her birthday celebration. I couldn’t imagine a morning brunch turning formal with spiritual thoughts and speeches. But she was persistent and she texted again the night before the brunch, asking to send her assignment back to her email address before the party started so she could print and attach each guest’s note to a joint birthday card and birthday present that she’d gift at the party. To my surprise, it felt really nice to write everything that I appreciate about my friend. And it felt even nicer to listen to all the beautiful (and true!) eloquent prose that people took the time to write out, every one read slowly out loud (by Ms Persistent who is also Incredibly Passionate and reads with So Much Expression) as soon as the birthday cake with candles was brought to the table. It turned out to be awesome to experience my friend being so seen, understood, appreciated, and loved on her birthday and it actually couldn’t have been more perfect. I learned from the experience that people have very different and unique ideas…and even when it’s unexpected, those out-of-the-box ideas can in fact be pretty genius! On top of all the love, I wish that every one of my friend’s birthday wishes come true!
Have an awesome weekend ahead!