Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Anti-mansionization vs. prices?

I received an email a few days ago asking, "Have you heard about the mansionization ordinance that is being proposed by the city of LA? It could reduce the buildable area on a lot by 2/3! This will certainly reduce prices on tear-downs, and probably on other properties as well." He provided this LA City PDF link.

I replied that Santa Monica's 1999 anti-mansionization standards north of Montana reduced the first floor to 35% of lot area and second floor to 26% (50% for a one-story, and a sliding scale in-between).

In the link's Los Angeles minimum R1 lot example (5,000 SF), a one-story house could be 2,600 SF, and a two-story one could be 3,088 SF. In contrast, on the same lot size in Santa Monica the one-story could be 2,500 SF and two-story 3,050 SF, slightly less.

This 1998 cartoon by Steve Kim from a local paper illustrated that campaign to save charming smaller older houses from proliferating Monster Mansions. Even with the smaller standard new houses are big, though, and small houses have kept being bulldozed.

It certainly didn't stop price appreciation in Santa Monica, which makes me doubt it would affect Los Angeles that much either. Your thoughts?


Anonymous said...

I have a question about Sunset Park, recently featured.
We currently rent north of Wilshire but I actually prefer the Sunset Park area. I agree that the prices are deliriously out of whack with reality. I am still seeing 1929 Moonshine making pioneer shacks with an asking price of $949 K I would not rent a place like that much less put down a cool million (that we don't have!).
Does anyone think that the Sunset Park homes will go down to a reasonably affordable level 700K in the next two years? Curious about your predictions

Anonymous said...

You can expect the area to ultimately shed 45% of peak pricing based on the last LA crash. Although with fundamentals so much worse now than then we could see even steeper losses. Do your homework and mark your lowballs based on 2002 or earlier. The phantom gains of the last five years cannot be sustained.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the feedback on Sunset Park. I am inclined to think that it will drop significantly.

I found some data about prices in Sunset Park in the
LA TIMES (when it was affordbale):

Year...Median Price






Westside Bubble said...

Good LA Times numbers, and quite plausible. The fundamentals say prices have to fall, but we're still waiting. It took a few years last time, and this run-up has been longer.

WarChestSM said...

Anon #1,

Yes this could be possible. I have devoted this week to flippers/specs in Sunset Park on my blog.

Houses near the airport should be especially vulnerable...paying over $1 million to have jets flying over you all day is CRAZY!!

Anonymous said...

The liberals are at it again. What's next, are they going to tell me how many kids I'm allowed to have or how many Big Macs I'm allowed to eat.

Give me a break!

Anonymous said...

Don't blame the liberals. We've got a bigger, more intrusive government than ever under a conservative president and a conservative Congress.