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Santa Monica Dirt | NOMO Hedges Redux

Posted by John Hathorn on April 13, 2017
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Recently several North of Montana residences have been issued notices for upcoming court hearings in regards to pending hedge height modifications. This has been a long time battle between neighbors in favor of, and some opposing, the current height restrictions. Those in favor prefer privacy, greenery aesthetics, environmental benefits and more security while those opposed complain that tall hedges blocks light and air from adjacent homes and contribute to a less “neighborly” looking neighborhood of estates. Not the Mayberry vibe that they prefer.

Back in 2002 the City reacted to complaints from the North of Montana Neighborhood Association (NOMA) about non-compliant, too tall hedges, fences and walls. Most folks ignore the City requests to modify their hedges and at one point the City began threatening homeowners with fines up to a whopping $25,000 per day! Rumor has it that this launched Bobby Shriver into politics when he was asked to trim his own hedges in 2003, which he was not happy about. The rest is history as he ran for City Council. In 2005 there was a public hearing with the planning commission in regards to the issue, prompting new temporary zoning ordinances. In 2007 the City modified that ordinance; residents could now “register” their existing (too tall) hedge heights with the City to preserve their rights to exceed the new height restrictions. Without registering, or “grandfathering,” non-conforming hedges prior to the deadline of November 2007, property owners would have to lower their walls, hedges and fence heights to comply with the new code.

Pence Hathorn Silver clients may recall, back in 2007, we helped register nearly 50 homes. Without proper registration front yard hedges, fences and walls cannot be taller than 42 inches while 12 feet is the maximum height for the side and backyard hedges, unless you get your neighbor’s approval for an additional four feet. The only exception is if your backyard abuts an alley, in which case there is no height restriction.

So why now, seven years later, are there so many notices of pending height modifications in the neighborhood. New sheriff in town? NOMA members flexing their muscles? Unhappy neighbors? I spoke with the Planning Commission office and they confirmed that if a property is “grandfathered” a neighbor cannot not file a complaint with the City.


One new listing came on the market:

1024 Palisades Beach Road– Relisted at $8,995,000 a John Byers-designed 6 bedroom and 7.5 bath Spanish Colonial Revival with sweeping, panoramic views spanning from Palos Verdes to Malibu. Last sold July 10, 1997 for $1,425,000 Listed by Pence Hathorn Silver.


One home went under contract last week:

213 Euclid Street– 5 bedroom and 6 baths, $6,699,000.  Newer custom built home boasting over 6,600+ square feet, on a large 11,000+ square foot lot.  Italian style villa designed by J. Charles, nice yard with swimming pool.  Last sold in September 1998 for $1,225,000.


One closed sale to report:

609 20th Street 3 bedrooms and 2 baths. Sold for $3,600,000.


Call me for a couple of upcoming attractions that are not yet listed in the MLS, priced from $1.9 million to $16 million. And….here are a few that we have listed in the MLS:

1024 Palisades Beach Road – 6 bedrooms and 7.5 baths $8,995,000

323 Adelaide Drive – 4 bedrooms and 6 baths $6,750,000

1023 S. Bundy Drive – 2 bedrooms and 2.5 baths $2,049,000

435 Arnaz Drive #101 – 2 bedrooms and 2.5 baths $890,000

11616 Chenault Avenue #6– 2 bedrooms, 1.75 baths $829,000

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