I'm looking for condos in the Torrance and Long Beach areas in CA that are in "safer" neighborhoods. I'm not

Asked by SouthBay Guy, South Bay, FL Mon Jun 2, 2008

familiar with LB though and wanted some advise as to which areas to avoid in LB. I have heard to avoid the northern areas of LB. I have three realtors concentrating in the South Bay area, Long Beach area and Downey area but wanted other opinions to help me narrow down the process. Thanks, Steve

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James McWhor…, Agent, Long Beach, CA
Fri Jun 13, 2008
Most areas in Long Beach are excellent to live in. I dont discount North Long Beach as many neighborhoods are very quiet and mostly retired MD / Boeing Aerospace workers with good retirement and the homes are very well keep. As with any area please do your own research and mother in law surveys.
Drive around and view the area especially at night that will give you a good indication of the quality. Also you should inquire with the Local Police Department as they have the up to date crime statistics.
Good Luck on you search!!!
1 vote
Newportfiji, , Long Beach, CA
Mon Jun 2, 2008
Steve, there are undesirable areas in both Long Beach and Torrance. The more desirable areas in Long Beach are Belmont Shore, Naples, Bixby Knolls, Virginia County Club and Park Estates. It depends on what your price point is right now and any consideration you might have concerning local schools. But, if you can't purchase in ones of those areas, perhaps you would be better off delaying a purchase in the near term, saving a bit more money and let the home prices continue to fall around you.

Apart from a few “the world is flat” realtors, everyone realizes that condos are falling in Long Beach. Those that are expecting a quick turn around from this bubble are dreaming. The last cycle took about 11 years to reach peaking pricing from the previous peak. Here are your Los Angeles County vanilla medians between 1989 and 2000: http://www.laalmanac.com/economy/ec37.htm

1989: $214,831
2000: $215,900

Pretty amazing, someone who purchased the “median home” for 214,831 sold for 215,900 11 years later. However, this bubble appears even larger that the 1989 run up, as depicted in the following graph: http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/laland/2008/04/where-we-stand.html . Granted prices are falling faster, so perhaps we can reach a bottom faster.

In my opinion this would generally be a terrible time to purchase a condo in Long Beach. All leading indicators are pointing in the same direction as to the Los Angeles market, (i) inventory has increased, (ii) sales transaction volume has slowed dramatically, (iii) lending standards have tightened (pulling thousands of potential buyers from the market), (iv) notices of defaults and foreclosures are at records levels, (v) the economy is slowing (looking more and more like a recession), (vi) literally thousands of high paying mortgage and other real estate related jobs have been lost in southern California over the past year and (vii) the mania which surrounded the real estate market a few years ago has been replaced by a conservative caution steering people to other investment classes. All of these things will put downward pressure on pricing for some time to come.

The reality is that residential prices in Long Beach will almost certainly be lower later this year, likely lower in 2009 and possibly even lower in 2010. Real estate cycles take many years to play out and we are at the early stages of a down cycle.

With that said, if you find your dream condo and can purchase with a large down payment and conventional financing and don't care about prices dropping further, consider the purchase. But DON"T purchase with the expectation of future price gains for a long time. If history is any guide, prices will not rebound quickly when the bottom is finally reached.

Best of Luck,
1 vote
Karen Miller, Agent, Long Beach, CA
Mon Jun 2, 2008
Hi Steve,

I specialize in wonderful Long Beach! I would avoid north Long Beach & the West Side.

There are many fabulous condos in Long Beach. Many are found downtown, in Belmont Shores, Bixby Knolls, the Virginia Country Club, and in East Long Beach.

Best of luck,

Karen Miller
1 vote
SouthBay Guy, Home Buyer, South Bay, FL
Sat Jan 2, 2010
Thanks to all who answered my question. I had a very good realtor who helped me to find my condo about a month after posting my question but I appreciate the support of all of the professionals and others on here. Good luck to all who are still looking for their home.
0 votes
Yvonne Kelly…, , Seal Beach, CA
Sat Jan 2, 2010
Dear Steve,

I would suggest, rather than having more agents, (as you have 3 already), analyize the same city or areas you have an interest in. I would suggest a buyer broker appointment to analyize your needs regarding the following:
1. Your price range or preferred monthly payment 2. Your distance to work 3. Location re hobbies or extra curricular interests or religious needs and not to forget.. 4. Possibility of home as an investment ( ie: where is wisest location for increase in value). Then look to see which City overlaps best for these needs and priorities of yours.
Taking safety and budget and these other factors into account, it will become automatically apparent which location will best serve you. A hidden factor, never visible to you as an out of area buyer, is the school district API score, as a hidden added value! While you may or may not have children, it always effects your property's intrinsic value. This is where a true professional is trained to help guide you to the best fit choices for your circumstances.

I would be glad to interview with you to see if my focus of service fits your needs.


Yvonne Kelly-Brazell
Prudential California Realty
(*text or call me)
Serving La and Orange Co. for almost 20 years
0 votes
Debra Enos, Agent, Mission Viejo, CA
Fri Jun 13, 2008
Hello Steve:
You are looking in various areas. Are you looking for a condo for yourself and not sure where you are going to land, or are you looking for investment property?

There are a number of nice areas to look at, including northern Long Beach.

What I advise is to determine your financial side so your realtor knows what you qualify for and is showing you properties in that range, make a list of "must have's", a list of "must not's" so that your realtor can narrow down what you are seeing, in the areas that you are looking in. Now, your Realtor may recommend other options of properties that may not meet all of your wants, but may have another positive side that may out way part of "the list",

Good luck on your quest, and if I can be of further assistance, please do not hesitate to call me.

Debra Enos, Realtor
Web Reference:  http://www.DebraEnos.com
0 votes
Charita King…, , Downey, CA
Mon Jun 2, 2008
Steve, If you absolutely need the condo and does not wnat to go through the "short sale" process, let me know I can find the properties for you in Belmont shore area. I know a lot of homeowners in the area who are interested in selling their properties but want to see buyers first.

Let me know,

Charita King 562-276-8681
0 votes
David, Home Buyer, South Bay, FL
Mon Jun 2, 2008
Hi both have good and bad areas Torrance is quite expensive meaning 2/2 close to the beach at 400-500k
condos houses are 600+ in LB Belmont Shore is the same price but houses are close together. Torrance has better schools overall. I'm looking myself and will have to end up in Downtown LB which is eclectic but far away for me. It's an extra 30 minutes or longer if you work in Santa Monica or LA unless it is downtown LA.

I'm just a buyer not an agent...
0 votes
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