In Part 2, the home buyers’ house hunting journey leads them to their initial discovery of “the one” in the desirable Los Feliz real state market.
The demand for Los Feliz real estate has been on the rise in recent years. In order to see this house, my clients arranged a quick two-day trip from New York to Los Angeles – obviously very motivated (and even more pregnant). I arranged to view a couple of other prospects, and this was also good in that the more wrong houses you view, the clearer it becomes when you encounter the right one. Another wrinkle was that I had never been inside the Vermont house (I usually prefer to preview houses for my clients – but it just isn’t always possible), but my instincts just kept telling me it was going to be “the one.”
The day before we looked at Vermont, we toured a house that had potential in the Outpost Estates, a great area in the Hollywood Hills that in some ways has a similar feel to Los Feliz real estate. This property was not actually on the market, but being shown privately by the agent (called a pocket listing). In many ways, the house was right, and my clients felt that if they could get it for the right price (meaning way below the asking price) they might make an offer. In my opinion, the asking price was inflated (like many pocket listings), so any offer way below that would be a non-starter. This ‘stretch’ is a predictable move for buyers who can’t seem to find “the one.” They begin to feel somewhat hopeless and defeated — that they may never find the right house. So, they start to force themselves to consider houses that can work, but that they don’t really love. I told my clients that, in no uncertain terms, when you start saying things like: “well, if I could get it cheap enough, I would consider it” — it is clearly not the right house. Buyers, to the extent they are able, should love the house they buy.
Well, we returned to Los Feliz real estate. The listing agent for the Vermont house was James Harris of The Agency, who met us there. I did not even know who he was, or that he and his partner David Parnes were the new guys on Million Dollar Listing LA. As we toured the property, I could feel the magic — we all just looked at each other and knew that this was “the one.” The house is a 1936 Mediterranean of 5,218 square feet, on a large 14,100 square foot flat lot (very special in Los Feliz north of the Boulevard), and completely private. In addition to the main house, there is a 1,200 square foot two-story guesthouse (top photo), spectacular outdoor living areas surrounding a salt water pool and lush landscape. My clients wanted the house, and their excitement was intoxicating. But they made it clear to me they had no intention of paying the asking price — they had set a max of $3.5M. So, the question was, as is often the case: how low can we offer without being dismissed out of hand by the sellers?
David Lubell is a Licensed California Real Estate Agent (BRE# 01928231) with Keller Williams. Learn more about David by reading his bio. Reach out to him via email or call him directly at 323-272-3222.