Monday, August 6, 2007

SM Mystery House

One of local agent Kate Bransfield's "Feature Homes" is unusual: "Exquisite Gated Property This listing will not be in the MLS. This stunning property boasts an elegant home which combines the best of the old and the best of the new. Just under 17,000 square foot lot with a pool that is right out of a tropical paradise. This property is gated and very private. Please, only Buyers (or their agents) who can provide their verification of ability to close should inquire." Its address is only given as "North of Montana / West of 7th Street". It has 5 bedrooms / 5.5 baths, asking $7.9M.

Some mysteries: Where is it? Why the big deal about not being in the MLS, when much more expensive houses are? Is it a big lot to justify the price? How does it compare with 506 Palisades, 4 bed / 4 bath on a 50-foot lot, asking $7,950K, still unsold?

One answer: Armed with the photos from her website, I went driving ... and couldn't find it! I then looked on Zillow for a lot size there just under 17,000 sq.ft. Turns out it's an unusual size, smaller than the original 100-foot-wide lots (22,000 sq.ft. and up), but larger than split 50-foot lots.

Voila! It's at 537 Alta, on a 75-foot lot, verified with MS Live Search aerial photos and a walk by (above), showing it rather hidden behind a hedge, with no sign.


Anonymous said...

This is called a "pocket/quiet listing." Agent doesn't have any kind of a listing agreement and the seller simply told her that if she procures a buyer, they may sell it. She is somewhat violating the rules by advertising it, but she is not disclosing the address which probably makes it OK.

D. A. said...

The house next door has what looks like a tennis court in their yard. Of course that means that their house is crowded up against the property line giving a nice view of the "private" back yard.

Anonymous said...

This property has an assessed value of approx. $5.2 million and apparantly was purchased in 2004. I wonder what the amount of debt is on this property. Someone's going to take a bubble bath.

war chest said...


I was just over on Piggington and your site was mentioned as a good LA based blog. I love your blog and your posts but the one thing I find myself still wanting is more conversation. Sometimes I make snotty, elitist, Santa Monica remarks just to see if a bit more lively discussion will ensue.

This is definitely not a complaint against you or the blog really...its more of a request for more folks to comment. Or maybe adopting a similar format to piggington where there are multiple open threads going at a time and where people can start new ones whenever?

I don't really know what would be best. Its your blog and your time that you are putting in and I really appreciate what you have done so far. The LA land blog gets a lot of comments and I think one reason is that it doesn't focus exclusively on the westside...but focusing pretty much exclusively on the westside is what makes this blog more interesting. So I guess it may not be possible to have ones cake and eat it too. Higher volume of comments probably requires a greater area of coverage?

I don't know if you or anyone else shares this sentiment but I thought I would throw it out there. Keep up the good work

war said...

I just read over my comment and I don't want to come off as though I don't think the LA land blog is interesting or relevant. It is one of the daily reads, but I am personally more interested in Santa Monica exclusively so that is why your blog is such a great fit.

Price Stout said...

537 Alta

Bought by Low Tide Docking 10/21/04 with a $4MM first... from a private lender. Glazer Erika Trust? Google search suggests that there are several Erika Glazer trusts. Then refi'd earlier this year for $3MM. Title says it's another first, but perhaps a 2d? dunno

Anonymous said...

uh oh- somewhere in among last month's foreclosure notices for S.M. I discovered a NOD for a property on Alta. Maybe this is the property? The amount in default was less than 500k.

Lionel said...

war chest, you made me laugh. Before moving to Seattle I'd lived in the Palisades so long I didn't even notice that your comments were snotty or elitist. For my wife and me the choice was: move to the valley or move out of town. My snottiness prevented me from even considering living in the valley (mostly the heat and the air BTW, nothing else really wrong with it), so we moved.

Anonymous said...

Somewhat OT but... I know folks with access to mortgage info pop in here occasionally, and this seems odd to me...
6225 Del Valle Dr , 90048

7/20/2007 $1,549,000 Grant Deed Resale 626889507

2/14/2007 $1,060,000 Grant Deed Resale 554243771

WTF?!?! Fraud? or just an incredible fool? TIA