It is really is disappointing that Santa Monica PD did not do more to protect people and property during the looting a few weeks ago. If you were downtown (or glued to the TV) two weeks ago, you watched protesters on Ocean Avenue surrounded and corralled by large numbers of police while droves of looters descended on our city – completely unchecked. It was shocking to watch as police only seemed to care about protesters and not the blatant crime happening just blocks away. Did you know that there is a fairly sizable effort underway to try to force the SMPD Chief to resign? 50,000 people have signed the petition. Are you one of them? I’m sure she has some support somewhere but so far; I’ve not heard of any.
It’s heartening to see some places reopening for business along Montana Avenue. Art’s Table, Margo’s and R&D Kitchen all were filled (to the new limited-capacity) with diners happy to be out together again. With the right protocols in place, I think it’s right to have stores and eateries cautiously open again.
The real estate market is showing some renewed velocity in the past few weeks. Multiple offers (16 of them on a starter home just south of Montana last week!) and some fairly expensive homes have gone under contract – 330 21st Place being the highest lately. (More on this later)
During the 12 weeks that we’ve been encouraged to stay at home many of us have focused more than ever on our living spaces, conscious of what we like and don’t like. Designers are getting busy! Many people want to start projects now because they have the time, they’ve been thinking about getting these things done and since we, for the most part, are not traveling, why wait?
The focus for these projects seems to be making spaces “practically” perfect; creating useful features rather than just pretty finishes. Here’s what we are hearing in terms of popular home improvement projects:
* Instead of just a beautiful marble bathroom, it’s more about storage solutions and closet spaces.
* Adding additional pantry space to store food after going to the grocery store less frequently.
* Materials with an emphasis on antimicrobials: Porcelanosa’s Krion is a man-made alternative to stone that’s hard-wearing and stays clean. A pricier upgrade is copper, an all-natural germ-fighting surface.
* AC system upgrades with infrared light to sanitize and filter the air.
* What about a “sanitizing sieve” intended for the entry to a large home or apartment complex, maybe like a stone circle, which mists water like you’d find in Las Vegas and Palm Springs and as you walk through, it sanitizes.
* Expect a heightened emphasis on the outdoors, especially outdoor spaces that act as additional living rooms year-round.
* Look for a rise in living walls, or vertical gardens, that will bring the outdoors inside.
* The desire for Vegetable/herb gardens is growing, a combination of needing to go to the grocery store less often, and how everyone found themselves cooking, even people who usually had a chef. (The Hathorn family now has a veggie garden)
* In condo’s expect touch-free elevators or ones with antibacterial, anti-scratch surfaces and industrial-grade air filters like those from Kone.
* Onsite gyms may be supplemented with private spaces in each apartment that come with a pre-installed Mirror fitness system.
* The amount of space allocated to rentable offices in any apartment tower will increase. Rentable micro-offices you can lease within a condo, could feel like you’re leaving your apartment but still have an office within your building.
In real estate news…
There are currently 25 active listings North of Montana. Three came on the market last week-
102 Ocean Way– Listed for $12M. This is a historic property, protected by the Mills Act. It is a 5,200 sqft John Byer’s Spanish on a huge 29,000 square foot lot with ocean views and Spanish tile courtyards. It was last sold in 2017 for $12M.
713 14th Street– Listed for $2,900,000. This 7,500 sqft lot is being sold for lot value. Existing house is 1,250 square feet.
468 22nd Street– Listed for $4,900,000. This 6 bedroom house is newly renovated and has a pool. Last sold in 2015 for $3,495,000.
6 are currently in escrow with three sales happening last week-
1629 Georgina– Listed for $3,999,999.
318 Euclid– Listed at $4M.
330 21st Place– Which is not currently active in the MLS. It went off the market a few weeks ago having been listed at $8,899,000.
Have a great week! The weather looks to be helping us do so and if you are looking to buy or sell a property, please call, email or text me. I promise to make the process fun and easy.