Question regarding house for sale on Gramercy. Need advice.

Asked by Repro, Greater Wilshire / Hancock Park, Los Angeles, CA Wed Sep 21, 2011

Looking at a home on Gramercy, two blocks south of Beverly. It's a fixer. Approximately 1700sf. I'm not too familiar with this area but should I buy this house, it would be to flip. What could I expect to resell it for as a completely remodeled home? The house lies right on the border of Windsor Sq and Larchmont but the street doesn't necessarily reflect it. I'm just not sure whether I should consider it further unless I know I could get a good return. The address is 117 N Gramercy. Any thoughts??

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Dorene Slavi…, Agent, Torrance, CA
Wed Sep 28, 2011
Dear Repro,
Please retain a buyer agent who can assist you. Pick an Agent who works in the Hancock Park area and knows it well. They would be the best source of correct information on your investment.
Just from what I know of the area, it's very strong generally speaking. If you need a referral for an excellent agent in the area just send an email my way.
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Kathleen Bec…, Agent, Santa Monica, CA
Sat Sep 24, 2011
Hi Repro:

That area is hit and miss. There are some really beautiful homes in that area, a library, post office and a strong neighborhood association as well as the Greater Wilshire Council, which includes the surrounding neighborhoods, like Larchmont, Windsor Village, Wilshire Park, Hancock Park, etc. There are also multi-unit properties as well.

The only advice I could give you is to do your homework and look at the comparable homes in the area. This property is not on the market at this time and it appears that the owners are absentee owners, with possible tenants,

What is the price you will be offering to the owners?

Feel free to contact me if you would like to discuss this further.

Good luck and all the best,

Kat Becker, Agent
Prudential California Realty
0 votes
David Chiles, Other Pro, Los Angeles, CA
Fri Sep 23, 2011
I love the architecture of these homes, however, I do not advise purchasing a home to flip in today's market. Even if you get a 'steal of a deal' it may be hard to sell when the remodeling is done due to a downturn in the market. This sounds like a keeper.
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David Chiles, Other Pro, Los Angeles, CA
Fri Sep 23, 2011
I love the architecture of these homes, however, I do not advise purchasing a home to flip in today's market. Even if you get a 'steal of a deal' it may be hard to sell when the remodeling is done due to a downturn in the market. This sounds like a keeper.
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0 votes
Deborah Brem…, Agent, Los Angeles, CA
Thu Sep 22, 2011
Jayne hits the nail on the head. Hancock Park vs. Larchmont vs. Windsor Square are different comps, and a few blocks either way will make a difference.
I have posted a Smart Zip Home Ownership Report made especially for this property on Scribd. (Link is below) It's an independent and objective investment rating for residential real estate, as well as comprehensive home investment reports help homebuyers and investors.
SmartZip Analytics offers real estate ratings, analytics, and advisory services that help banks, real estate agents and consumers be smart about real estate. Using proprietary algorithms and predictive modeling, the company’s products and services give valuable insight about home values, investment quality, risk, desirability and likelihood to sell. SmartZip ratings and analysis are available for over 75 million U.S. homes across 56,000 neighborhoods.
Read it, and you will have a great sense of value, demographics, etc. It will make a buying decision easier. You'll see it set at a certain price, which is editable. Call me to discuss how to move the valuation up or down, as necessary.
Best of luck,
Deborah Bremner
The Bremner Group at Coldwell Banker
REALTOR, 00588885, ABR, CDPE, eAgent, CSP, SFR, HRC, CRE
(O) 310-571-1364 DIRECT
(D) (310) 800-2954
Accredited Buyer Representative|Certified Distressed Property Expert |Pre-Foreclosure Specialist Certified
I want you to know that I appreciate any referrals from friends and associates who may be in the market to buy or sell real estate. You can count on me giving them the same high-quality service I provide to all of my clients.
0 votes
Jayne Clement, Agent, Los Angeles, CA
Wed Sep 21, 2011
Hi Repro,
The comps in this area will pull a higher "per square foot" price than this property will actually generate, due to the proximity of the higher end Larchmont comps, versus the comps on the east side of I wouldn't use that metric exclusively when determining a renovated value.

With that said, this home fits the "buy the worst house on the block" formula, as most of the homes on this immediate block are well maintained and the exteriors are upgraded. You would definitely need to invest some bucks in the curb appeal of this home, and I think it could measure up to it's neighbors very easily.

This is a good, "bread and butter" area of LA. I've sold homes in these streets to hipsters that were priced out of the uber cool Silver Lake area and found that even Echo Park has gotten so competitive that it's tough to get an accepted offer. Most of these homes were built in the early 1900's and are modified Craftsmans and/or California bungalows. This particular house needs some exterior love to bring back that cute bungalow look that the rest of the homes on the block have...then you'll attract your buyers. Design sells.

Additionally, depending on what you're able to buy it for, I would seriously consider adding a 2nd bathroom, as that will pay for itself in spades.

The closest comp is 119 S. Gramercy...but note the differences: this home was listed in Jan 2010 for $749k and sold 126 days later for $600k (after reducing it to $649k). However, this home is cherried out and is a de facto Craftsman with the wood details in place, which commands a higher price...but I'm sure that the one bath was an issue. However, the inventory in LA is down almost 19% year-to-date so that should be a positive for you.

Bottom line, you need to steal this house so that you can really sink some money into in and bring it up to snuff so that you can list it in the $550k-$649k ballpark...but that will require a serious investment into the property to get the higher number (based on the look of the outside, I've got a feeling that it needs a lot of work). Cherry it out, stage it, and of course, work with a great listing agent that knows how to market it.

If you need some assistance with renovation, i.e., contractors, plans, permit info, work crews, etc., I'm happy to help. If you're new to the flip game, I would also suggest that you partner up with an experienced partner who has done exactly this type of job before and can just walk in with a crew at the ready, navigate the permit issues quickly and get it back on the market fast. This is my backyard, so please feel free to contact me for any additional info...and to see if you'd like to work with me to buy it and/or sell it for you! Best of luck!
Jayne Clement
Keller Williams Realty
Cell) 213/309-5005
0 votes
Maguy Benaim, , Los Angeles, CA
Wed Sep 21, 2011
Not on the mls. What price are they selling?? feel free to call me. Thanks.
0 votes
Daniel Choi, Agent, Los Angeles, CA
Wed Sep 21, 2011
If I am not mistaken this house is not on the market abd owned by a family trust and its chracteristics are 3 bed/1bath built in 1,919 with 1,748 SF building size.

The comparable for the area in the last three months has been close to $ 370/Sf which yield approximately $ 646,000. If you are the seller, the return on your investment will be dependent on the purchase price plus the renovation/improvement costs that will be needed to attract buyers to this particular area which is not quite in the prime Hancock Park area.

I am very familiar with this area and my clients are looking to live in the neighborhood.

Ultimately, the property should be placed at a competitive price and you definitively will need a real estate agent familiar withnthis market like myself to market this house.

Please feel free to contact me with any questions regarding this proeprty or other investment opportunities.


Daniel Choi
Nextage Capital Advisors
(213) 820-7509
0 votes
Dot Chance, Agent, Burbank, CA
Wed Sep 21, 2011
Are you working with a Realtor? If so, ask him/her to do a CMA for you so you can compare it to the others. You definitely do not want to have the best house on the block. You want to know your numbers well to make sure you can get a good return on your investment.

Let me know if I can help!

Dot Chance, Realtor®
Certified Distressed Property Expert – CDPE®
DRE License #01494182
Keller Williams Realty World Media Center

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