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Happy Birthday Trees 🌳 Real Estate Blog

Happy Birthday Trees 🌳 Real Estate Blog

Los Angeles Real Estate Luxury Fixer Remodel


We have a new listing for sale at 507 N Mansfield!  The offering is a 6007 square foot lot primarily sold for land value! The list price is 1,850,000.  For now it’s drive-by only and with serious inquiries we can walk people through by private appointment.  We have a really great lease offering coming this week at 171 N Orange!  The space is huge at 2600 square feet and it has 3 beds + 3 baths. The most beautiful part of the offering is the public space – there’s an elegant parlor, a light filled formal living room with fireplace, and a wood paneled large formal dining room.  At 6000/mt this is a great spot to lease.  We also have a lease coming up this week at 607 N Orange.  It’s a unit that was added at the back of a triplex building.  It’s spacious and remodeled and it has 3 beds + 2 baths for 4200/month.  We’re preparing 135 S Orange for lease. We worked really hard…and we did 80 lease sides last year in 2023!!!!!

This week Oliver closed his listing at 5007 Morrison for 1,049,000!  We leased 165 N Las Palmas for 17,000 a month!  We leased 345 N Mansfield for 6400 a month!  345 N Orange leased for 7250/month and since we know that the tenant at 343 N Orange gave notice and will be leaving soon, that unit leased again too!

Our duplex for sale at 206 S Mansfield is special because it’s so large at 5340 square feet; both on title and in life it has 8 beds + 8 baths (4 beds + 4 baths in each unit)!  There is a tenant upstairs who pays about 4000 a month.  Everyone asks if they can get the building delivered vacant.  The only way an owner can deliver a rental unit vacant is if the tenant volunteers to be paid out and to leave.  Absent a voluntary agreement to vacate, a new purchaser can legally withdraw a unit from the rental market.  The tenant gets paid relocation compensation according to the city’s schedule (which is about $20,000) and then the new buyer can withdraw the unit from the rental market entirely, and have the personal use of both units.  We sold a comparable duplex in the area a little bit of time ago off market.  The buyer paid 2,550,000 to purchase the building. The upstairs was delivered vacant and the tenant who lived downstairs agreed to a voluntary landlord buyout post purchase.  Very high end renovation cost 250k to 300k per unit and construction took about 3-4 months per unit with permits.  With 25% down and 75% borrowed on the acquisition, at a time when interest rates were at about 5.5%, the total monthly rent covers the total monthly cost (not including construction costs).  Rent ranges on high end remodeled units from 7250 to 8000 a month.  We have 3 buyers circling around 206 S Mansfield and everyone who considers the property is looking for this information.

On my mind this week is uninformed and implausible talk in the news about online platforms like Zillow or Amazon taking over real estate sales, and lawsuits arguing that buyers’ agents should not be paid commissions by sellers. In our world, every day we interact with humans who need an empathetic, strategic, trustworthy, and complex minded fellow human to navigate their thought process about a potential purchase or sale.  In the last two days, we spoke to a gentleman who appeared in divorce court and was awarded the right to consent to the sale of his house but not to the proceeds from sale (which were awarded to his ex wife).  We spoke to a seller who loves her current agent but after 10 months her property still isn’t sold, and she wishes her agent would sell it because she really wants it sold.  There’s the elderly lady who hoarded stuff and neglected her property for the last 20+ years, and she’s scared to engage but she’d love to offload if she wasn’t so scared.  Most sellers explain at some point during a listing appointment how meaningful their property is to them both emotionally and financially.  Most buyers take a year to two years, multiple missed attempts to purchase, and so much contemplation and preparation over the course of the search period, before making the leap and becoming a homeowner.  The endeavor to guide both buyers and sellers is mostly so complex, personal, sensitive, and time consuming, that there’s no way a computer or a non compensated human would do the job effectively, or likely at all. Companies spent years creating technology platforms but tech is never replacing agents.  It will be interesting to see how the lawsuits pan out post appeal, but I don’t believe real estate will ever happen effectively without agent compensation, no matter how the court determines commissions are paid.

This Thursday is Tu B’shvat, the Jewish New Year for Trees. This holiday is an opportunity to savor and appreciate the bounty of this world, and to give thanks for all the ways that trees provide us with food, shelter, beauty, air, and valuable life lessons.  As a child (many moons ago), we’d go to my grandparents’ house on Tu Bshvat and my Grandma and Grandpa would cut up every possible variety of fresh and dried fruit they could find and they’d set it out on their table.  We’d sing songs together and then we’d each savor every fruit, one at a time, in unison, in between songs, and we’d marvel at the deliciousness and our gratitude for nature’s candy!  Ever since childhood, I have been fascinated by overwhelmingly delicious fruit.  I’ll never forget the incredible mango I ate straight from the tree in Bora Bora, or the starfruit you bite into like an apple in Kauai, or the huge juicy nectarines you buy from the wood crate in Trader Joe’s in August in LA.  The new variety of apple called Envy is delicious and they’re at Ralphs now!  This week and always, I remember my grandparents and the love of fruit + trees + nature that I learned from them and their sweet Tu B’shvat parties!

Wishing everyone an awesome week ahead!


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