531 N Poinsettia is our last duplex available. 535 N Poinsettia had multiple offers and is in escrow, 333 N Orange had multiple offers and is in escrow, 458-460 N Alta Vista currently has multiple offers. 531 N Poinsettia is the lowest price of the bunch and it’s primed and ready for a new buyer. The property is a 7,357 square foot lot, zoned R1, and fully vacant so it is ready to be torn down and a brand new (very valuable) house built in its place. The owner is lovely and a total pleasure to interact with, which will make for a super easy and nice experience :).
We put 403 N Orange up for lease for $7,500/mt and it leased immediately for $7,500/mt for 2 years with an option to renew for a third year. The property is a duplex but because there are two side-by-side attached townhouses sited on a corner with the entrances on Orange and on Oakwood, it feels like a single family house on the corner of Orange and Oakwood. With 4 beds, 5 baths, 2,900 square feet of space over two stories, it’s a good deal for $7,500/month. We had multiple interested parties immediately and the backup applicants were super sad to miss out – they’re wishing for something similar.
I went on two very similar listing appointments last week. Both couples are retirement age and wanting to downsize. One bought their house for $750,000 and it’s now worth upwards of $5,000,000. The other bought their house for $350,000 and it’s now worth around $2,000,000. Both would sell and downsize…if it weren’t for the tax ramifications of their sale. Property taxes are a non issue because all the owners are over 55 and so their property tax base will transfer to their new house. It’s the capital gains taxes that will be steep on each sale. Since both couples file taxes jointly, they each get an exclusion of $500,000 on the gain from the sale of their house. But, that still leaves a whole lot of taxable gain that would be taxed at a capital gains rate, and for each sale it would be a sizable amount of capital gains tax. When one person in the couple eventually dies, the survivor gets a stepped-up basis to the fair market value of the house and THEN that surviving spouse could sell the house tax free and pay no taxes on the gain from the sale. Both of these couples concluded that the best time to sell will be when one person in the couple dies.
I sold a house not too long ago where the single owner who was at retirement age really wanted to downsize from her big house to a small space. We had this capital gains tax conversation for many years until I finally suggested that the owner just sell the house, pay the capital gains taxes, and live the life she wanted to live after the taxes were paid. We sold the house (for way more than the owner ever imagined it was worth), she realized the taxable gain, she downsized, and she is in fact living the life of her dreams. Of course it’s a shame that there’s a cost to downsizing, but there’s also the benefits both of downsizing and also of living out one’s dreams while still alive. Taxes are simply a part of life. I’m not sure it makes sense for taxes to hold us back from the lives we want to be living.
We’re working with the loveliest brother and sister preparing their dad’s house for sale. Their dad recently passed away and he was obviously a talented + creative + successful person, judging from his beautiful house, the cool paintings/masterpieces that are hanging on the walls, and most of all the lovely adults he birthed and raised. The heirs get a stepped up basis upon their dad’s passing, but more than the tax free proceeds they will inherit, they learned by example from their dad what it means to live a life well lived.
It feels like we always meet so many buyers who are waiting to buy – waiting for the market to soften, waiting for interest rates to fall, waiting for the perfect property to come on the market, waiting for the right moment with free time to spend on the process. The truth is that every seller we meet at listing appointments shares emphatically that the most lucrative investment vehicle throughout their life was absolutely purchasing their house. Looking back years after their purchase, most sellers still remember the hesitation, fear, resistance, reluctance to buy. And everyone is always grateful and blessed that they pushed through and they bought their house. Right now rentals stay on the market for a second and they’re in high demand at high prices and there’s some widespread fear and reluctance to buy. Long term it makes much more sense to buy than to rent. We don’t come across people who regret that they purchased a house; we come across people who regret that they didn’t.
Highlight of my week was babysitting our 20-month-old grandson, Eliyahu, with Seth, while Yakov and Chassi went away for 24 hours. What a treat! The three of us…watched a doggy get his haircut at Petco, dipped our French Fries in ketchup at Fish Grill, ran up and down all the mountains and rode all the slides at Pan Pacific Park, and we marveled at the animals at the LA Zoo – the chimpanzees eating sweet potatoes, the very vocal elephants, the graceful striped zebras, and Eliyahu’s favorite, the baby giraffe. When it was just Eliyahu and Grandma at 6:30 am right when we woke up, we had sour sticks for breakfast. (Seth would never have sour sticks for breakfast.) Thinking back to when Yakov was born, I never would have guessed, until I lived it, how my heart could explode with so much love. And of course I never could have guessed, until I live it, how my heart as a grandmother could explode with love even more.
I’m over-the-moon excited for my first listing appointment in Oxnard today! I think Oxnard may be one of my favorite places on the planet! Right now when it’s so hot out, the cool breezes in Oxnard especially hit the spot!
Wishing everyone an awesome week ahead!