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Long Beach California Luxury Home Market Update

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Long Beach California is home to the West Coasts most affordable beach real estate.  Set in sunny Southern California we enjoy moderate temperatures year round, sweet ocean breezes and a resort atmosphere.  With our purchase prices so reasonable is it any wonder snowbirds are flocking here?  Palm Desert, 2 hours inland, is fantastic, but nothing compares to luxury oceanfront property and the beach is just more fun!

Long Beach has an endless array of entertainment to suit any lifestyle or age from water-sports to nightlife, theater and fine dining.  This is the perfect place to do everything, do nothing or to just go fly a kite!

Yes we have golf courses!  Long Beach is centrally located making access to all Southern California golf courses just a short drive.

Long Beach is conveniently located just 20 minutes south of Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), 20 minutes north of John Wayne Airport (SNA) in Irvine, and home to our own Long Beach Airport – which we love.  We are also just a 20 minute drive into Downtown Los Angeles – in case you were thinking about catching a Lakers game; attending a concert at the fabulous Staples Center or a performance at our beautiful Music Center.  Fantabulous and incomparable, 8 time Grammy award winner, Tina Turner
is performing at the Staples Center as I write this, had I known that ahead of time I would be there tonight singing along……..What’s love got to do with it? La la la… Gotta love that woman!

Did I say we were centrally located?  A 2 hour drive north will find you in beautiful Santa Barbara.  Head north just a little further and enjoy a day, or a romantic weekend, in wine country.  A leisurely drive south will take you into lovely San Diego.  Catch a Padres game or spend a day at the San Diego Zoo or perhaps SeaWorld with the family then head into the Downtown San Diego gaslight district for a delicious dinner and some relaxing down time.

Surfer? 10 minutes to surf city – Huntington Beach, where you will catch some of the finest waves on the west coast.

Long Beach is slated to become the new home of the largest movie studio in California.  A deal has been struck to take over the Boeing facility near the Long Beach airport. This will infuse new life into Long Beach and will certainly attract celebrities to our lovely waterfront homes and high rise condominiums.  How could they resist?  You never know who your new neighbor may be!

Did you know that Hollywood got its start in Long Beach?  Long Beach was known as the motion picture capital of the world until post World War I when Hollywood developed around the glitz of the era.  With its perfect Southern California climate, Long Beach afforded the perfect setting for the industry.  There were eight film houses, two stock companies,  roller-coasters and bath houses at the historic Pike, along the shore of Downtown Long Beach.  This was the home of the Balboa Amusement Production Company, the  world’s most prolific silent-film studio.  W. C. Fields and other stars lived in beautiful mansions in the Bluff Park neighborhood along Ocean Boulevard and First Street, many of which remain in the families to this day.

Speaking of historic districts, Long Beach has 17 of them, California Heights being the largest.  We love our historic homes here.  You can find out more about the history of Long Beach here as well.

Redevelopment in Alamitos Beach and the bustling Downtown Long Beach communities has birthed fabulous luxury high rise condominiums with endless ocean views, Manhattan style lofts and many fabulous new dining opportunities.

The luxury home market is generally a cash market.  Brian Brady’s 2009 Real Estate Market outlook predicts that disappearing jobs and financing will likely drive the price of luxury properties down in our waterfront and higher end communities.  While that is tragic for the owners of these Long Beach properties it is an incredible opportunity to purchase the Long Beach home, condo or vacation property you, the buyer has been waiting for.

The Long Beach real estate market has gone through several tumultuous years, this winter is certain to be a difficult time for sellers of Long Beach luxury homes, condos and income properties.  FHA loan limits, currently capping at $729,750 for single family home purchases are slated to be decreased to around $625,000 on January 1, 2009.  Decreasing buyer purchasing power is certain to affect prices in the mid-market range of $700,000 to about $1,000,000.

What does this mean for sellers?  If you are planning on selling, you should plan on closing your escrow before the end of the year and should price it to do so. It would be our pleasure to provide a home value assessment.

What does this mean for buyers?  This is an incredible opportunity to purchase your new home at an incredible price.

International buyers are flocking to the United States to purchase real estate at our current depressed prices, there is limited financing for foreign nationals, most are purchasing with all cash.  Long Beach prices have become very attractive to these buyers. You can start your search for Long Beach homes here.  VIP service is provided with the ability to set up custom searches with an automatic email alert system.

If you are interested in purchasing a Long Beach luxury oceanfront home or a high rise luxury waterfront condominium, this winter is the time to make that purchase. It would be our pleasure to assist you.

Long Beach California City and Relocation Resource Guide

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Laurie Manny
Long Beach Realtor (562) 212-5420


Main Street Realtors Belmont Heights 244 Redondo Avenue Long Beach California 90803


Long Beach Real Estate BlogLong Beach Real Estate Website




Long Beach California Luxury Home Market Update
Posted on October 17, 2008 by Laurie Manny

Long Beach Own Your Own-OYO-Owners Are Organizing for Condo Conversion-Breaking Long Beach Real Estate News


Breaking Long Beach Real Estate News:

Long Beach Own Your Own (OYO) Owners Are Organizing for Condo Conversion.  Back in May the Long Beach Real Estate Home Blog published an article on OYO’s.  So many buyers were inquiring about this form of ownership it made sense to publish an article, explaining this form of ownership, to be found on the Internet.  Well it has been found, by several thousand Long Beach and potential Long Beach residents who have indeed read it, including many frustrated Long Beach OYO owners.  Several days ago I was contacted by the lovely Deb Dobias, a Long Beach OYO owner who is a major contributing force in the quest to organize OYO owners to push state and local officials to loosen the reigns and convert the last of the existing Long Beach OYO’s to condos.  Deb went on to explain what these owners have been up against and the efforts they have put forth.  We invited her to write an article here and are very pleased that she accepted our offer. 


It is our sincere hope that the District Weekly, Curbed LA, the Grunion and Downtown Gazettes, the Press Telegram, the Los Angeles Times and the Orange County Register will also pick up this article or will contact Deb and assist in this noble effort with an article of their own to help these troubled OYO owners. It is our further hope that both California state and local officials will get out of the box and make this happen. 

Please understand that many of these owners are in deep trouble.  They cannot sell their Own Your Own (OYO) homes because there is little or no financing available.  Due to the problems plaguing this form of ownership many owners have rented their units out and have moved on.  In doing so they have decreased the level of owner occupied units in the remaining OYOs which has eliminated any chance for a Long Beach buyer to obtain financing to purchase. 


In July 2008 the Long Beach Real Estate Blog offered the communities of Long Beach a place to be published.  This is another in a series of articles by Long Beach residents.  Do You Want to be Published?




– An
untapped resource for Affordable Housing

Author:  Deb Dobias


Long Beach Own Your Own (OYO) Condo ConversionsThe City of
Long Beach Housing
is under-served in providing affordable housing to
“first-time home buyers” and seniors on fixed incomes. “While Long Beach Housing Trust” continues to
build new projects for affordable housing, low income or fixed income buyers
are still unable to have enough funding to pay the down payment. Building costs
keep the price of these “Affordable” Long Beach homes high.

Purchasing Own
Your Own Apartments (OYO)
in Long Beach is a means to becoming stakeholders and being
able to afford to buy apartment homes for reasonable sums.  OYOs were the pre-cursors to Condos, usually
built before the 1960s.  Long Beach has a large number of these
charming, well-kept, usually small buildings. 
Most Long Beach OYOs, even after Condo Conversion, would sell for less than newer
“Affordable Housing”; this could
significantly add to the City’s Affordable Housing.  Best of all, making it possible for people to
buy these affordable Long Beach homes would leave the Housing Trust funds for more
housing in Long Beach.

Little Problem…


who wants to buy a Long Beach OYO usually cannot get financing like Condos can.  When a bank does offer loans, it usually
requires a high owner-occupancy in the OYO complex.  For the past few years, only Long Beach investors could
cough up the cash to buy these places, so owner-occupancy is often low.


Which causes more problems…


  • Long Beach Own Your Owns (OYO) Owners are OrganizingOne lady in our building got sick and
    couldn’t work for a while.  Our building, a Long Beach OYO,
    had some serious maintenance issues so we had to levy some special assessments,
    which she couldn’t pay.  The City of Long Beach has Rehab Loans for low-income owners of houses or Condos, but not for
    OYOs.  This poor lady wound up having to sell
    her OYO home for a very low price and move in with family.  Had we been able to convert, she could have kept
    her home.

  • Many Long Beach OYO owners are elderly.  Reverse mortgages are not available to OYOs in Long Beach.

  • No home equity loans are available to
    OYOs.  This often causes owners to vote
    against maintenance assessments or to avoid maintaining their own units.  These are older buildings, so this affects
    Long Beach neighborhoods and tenants as well as owners.


  • A lady who lived in her OYO home told me that she wanted to take out an
    equity loan so she could invest in another property.   Renting that property would help her to pay
    bills when she retires.  She has
    excellent credit and owes nothing on her OYO.  
    She cannot do this simply because her OYO complex can’t prove who lived
    there in 1982! 



Why can’t OYOs just convert to Condominiums?


California has an outdated law that prevents many OYOs
from converting.  This law requires that
an OYO complex prove that they were at least 75% owner-occupied in 1982. 

Since OYOs are already individually owned, there is a section of laws
that allows OYOs to convert in a different way than rental buildings.  Part of this law was written to prevent
developers from owning OYOs, then converting them to condo for profit more
cheaply and easily than converting a rental building.  They figured this 1982 owner-occupancy
requirement would close that loophole. 
Twenty-six years later, this law not only doesn’t serve its intent but
very few people can come up with that kind of proof because no one keeps
records that long.



tried to fix it. 


Long story short -
the City of Long Beach won’t grant exceptions to this because it’s a California State Law.  We couldn’t get the California State Law corrected via
an Omnibus Bill sponsored by Senator Lowenthal because a Tenants Rights group
objected.  The next step is to try to get
separate bill sponsored by a legislator.



Wait.  Why would a Tenants Rights group object?


they worry about the large number of rental buildings that have been converted
to Condos in Long Beach.  When they do that, it boots
people out of their Long Beach homes and makes fewer rental apartments available so the
rents are higher.  When it comes to OYOs,
though, it’s a matter of converting units that have already been individually
owned for 50 years.  Who owns these
places won’t change with conversion. 
Some OYO owners may sell their unit/s after conversion; many of those would sell
whether they are converted or not.



helps tenants, too!



Rental Availability 


OYO’s in Long Beach provide an
approach for “Mom & Pop” owners to enter into the investment/rental market
which can continue or increase the availability of rental units.   Once loans are made available, these new
rental unit owners will be motivated to maintain and upgrade their units.





Of course,
maintenance isn’t a tenant’s job since they are paying rent.   Because there is no financing available to
OYO buildings, owners have less money available to them for maintenance and
upgrades.  It lowers the quality of life
for everyone.



Owning your own  


Long Beach Own Your Own (OYO) Homes


There’s a guy in my OYO building who has
rented his unit for 23 years through 3 changes of ownership.  He wants very badly to buy his place, and
could afford it now, but there is no financing available. 
His landlord charges as much rent as the market will bear, which is
typical.  His housing costs would
increase at a much slower rate if he could own his home.


The new legislation would ease the condo conversion issues so
that there are loans available for these “self owned
apartments”.   There are great loan
programs out there for first-time home buyers in Long Beach, some with no down payment.  The new proposed legislation will help these
kinds of Long Beach properties get the financing needed to make them available to those of
us who need affordable housing. 

For more info on
this law and our efforts to correct it, visit our website.

Contact us with
your comments, questions, or if you can help us to change this law.  We are gathering a list of OYO buildings for
the sole purpose of helping change the law. 
If you own an OYO home, please add your building to the list!

Deb Dobias


have supporters from the following OYO complexes,
as well as Realtors and HOA Property Managers.

Our list is growing. This list only partially covers
the Long Beach area but we are expanding our search. 
Please contact us to add your name to our list of
supporters or if you can help us change this law.

700 E 1st St

Ocean View Apts or Ocean Gardens.
1311 E 1st

2225 E 2nd street

The Montclair
1250 E 3rd

1250 E 4Th St

1280 E 4Th St

Clarendon OYO Apartments
1739 Appleton

Palm Garden Apts.  
617 Cedar

354 Chestnut Ave

Welles Apartment HOA
325 Elm Ave

Princess Apartments
82 Lime Ave

Lime Ave OYO
 337 Lime Ave

Villa Aqua
1101 E Ocean Blvd




*Disclaimer:  The opinions and statements in this article are not necessarily the sentiments or opinions of the Long Beach Real Estate Home Blog, its author’s, owner, or any affiliated persons or entities and we accept no liability for them.*



Related Posts:

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Laurie Manny
Long Beach Realtor (562) 212-5420


Main Street Realtors Belmont Heights 244 Redondo Avenue Long Beach California 90803


Long Beach Real Estate BlogLong Beach Real Estate Website




Long Beach Own Your Own-OYO-Owners Are Organizing for Condo Conversion-Breaking Long Beach Real Estate News
Posted on September 18, 2008 by Laurie Manny

Long Beach – Best Neighborhood for Walking

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One of the most appealing draws to living in Long Beach CA is the walkability of many of our local neighborhoods. Well, somebody finally decided to start ranking walkable neighborhoods across the country. Walk Score has ranked 2,508 neighborhoods in 40 of the largest US cities to help buyers find walkable communities to live in.


Long Beach California has been ranked as the 8th Most Walkable Neighborhood!

  1. San Francisco
  2. New York
  3. Boston
  4. Chicago
  5. Philadelphia
  6. Seattle
  7. Washington D.C.
  8. Long Beach
  9. Los Angeles
  10. Portland
  11. Denver
  12. Baltimore

see the rest here…



Long Beach Neighborhood Walk Scores:

Neighborhood Score
1 Downtown Long Beach
2 Belmont Shore 83
3 Belmont Heights 82
4 Bixby Knolls 81
5 East Side 81
6 Park Estates 78
7 Alamitos Heights 77
8 Circle Area 76
9 Lakewood Village 74
10 Naples IslandMarina Area 74
11 California Heights Historic District 73
12 Poly High District 73
13 Los Altos 71
14 City of Signal Hill 68
15 Wrigley 66
16 Bixby
17 El Dorado Park 62
18 Los Cerritos 62
19 City College Area 58
20 North Long Beach 55
21 Airport Area 55
22 State College Area 54
23 West Side 54
24 The Plaza 53
25 North West Long Beach 44
26 Wilmington 29

52% of Long Beach has a Walk Score of 70 or above.

85% of Long Beach has a Walk Score of at least 50.

15% of Long Beach lives in a Car Dependent Neighborhood.



What do these scores mean?


Here are some general guidelines to how these rankings work:


  • 90-100 = Walkers’ Paradise: Most errands can be accomplished on foot and many people get by without owning a car.
  • 70-89 = Very Walkable: It’s possible to get by without owning a car.
  • 50-69 = Somewhat Walkable: Some stores and amenities are within walking distance, but many everyday trips still require a bike, public transportation, or car.
  • 25-49 = Car-Dependent: Only a few destinations are within easy walking range. For most errands, driving or public transportation is a must.
  • 0-24 = Car-Dependent (Driving Only): Virtually no neighborhood destinations within walking range. You can walk from your house to your car!



How It Doesn’t Work: Known Issues with Walk Score


Walk Score admits that Walk Score is just an approximation of walkability. There are a number of important factors that contribute to walkability which are not part of their algorithm:

  • Public transit: Good public transit is important for walkable neighborhoods.
  • Street width and block length: Narrow streets slow down traffic. Short blocks provide more routes to the same destination and make it easier to take a direct route.
  • Street design: Sidewalks and safe crossings are essential to walkability. Appropriate automobile speeds, trees, and other features also help.
  • Safety from crime and crashes: How much crime is in the neighborhood? How many traffic accidents are there? Are streets well-lit?
  • Pedestrian-friendly community design: Are buildings close to the sidewalk with parking in back? Are destinations clustered together?
  • Topography: Hills can make walking difficult, especially if you’re carrying groceries.
  • Freeways and bodies of water: Freeways can divide neighborhoods. Swimming is harder than walking.
  • Weather: In some places it’s just too hot or cold to walk regularly.

More information on how the walk score is determined can be found here.


Long Beach Relocation and City Guide



When seeking walkable Long Beach neighborhoods nobody knows the areas better than your Long Beach Realtor. Search Long Beach Homes for sale and consult your Realtor to find out which Long Beach neighborhoods best suit your specific needs.






Read More Details

Laurie Manny
Long Beach Realtor (562) 212-5420


Main Street Realtors Belmont Heights 244 Redondo Avenue Long Beach California 90803


Long Beach Real Estate BlogLong Beach Real Estate Website




Long Beach – Best Neighborhood for Walking
Posted on July 26, 2008 by Laurie Manny

Selling Your Long Beach Homes-Long Beach Real Estate

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Yay!  The Down Market is OVER!


Long Beach Homes-Selling Strategy-Long Beach Real EstateNo it’s not, but now that I have your attention, the market has changed a bit and there are a few things you really need to know if you are thinking about selling your Long Beach homes

Back in the hot sellers market one of the sales strategies used was to price a home a little low, take multiple offers, and play them off of each other to drive the price up.  It worked!  That strategy, applied to today’s Long Beach real estate market is working as well. 

Pricing your home low will inspire the interest of buyers and agents and create a quick, steady flow of traffic and multiple offers to your home. 

For instance, if your home, in great condition, comps out at $500,000 and you listed it at $299,000 you would have the attention of the entire real estate market.  You would have to prepare yourself for a major onslaught of showings, perhaps as many as 30 to 50 a day.  The offers would pour in and bid up.  At $500,000, you would sit on the market for months, probably price reduce a couple of times to about $450k and likely sell around $440k, if at all.  If you choose this road, you will probably sell at around the same price, without the time delay.  It’s clean and fast. 

An added benefit to creating multiple offers is that you have a choice.  You will not be forced to accept an offer with weak financing because it is the only offer you have.  There will be an assortment of offers for you to choose from thereby placing you in a stronger position to close escrow successfully. 


Many sellers in Long Beach are afraid to pursue this road fearing they will have to accept an offer that is lower than they are willing to accept.  Sellers do not have to accept any offer, they are free to accept or decline any offer made on their homes. 

It is just a really smart business decision to choose to sell your home in this fashion, during this market. 


Read Also:

The 7 Dangers of Overpricing Your Long Beach Homes and Condos

Chasing the Market Down – Are You Guilty?


If you are thinking about selling your Long Beach home and are interested in more details, call Laurie for more information.


Read More Details

Laurie Manny
Long Beach Realtor (562) 212-5420


Main Street Realtors Belmont Heights 244 Redondo Avenue Long Beach California 90803


Long Beach Real Estate BlogLong Beach Real Estate Website




Selling Your Long Beach Homes-Long Beach Real Estate
Posted on May 24, 2008 by Laurie Manny

Long Beach Own Your Owns-OYO-OYOs-Condo Conversions-Income Properties in Long Beach

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Long Beach Own Your Owns – OYOs

What the Heck is an OYO?

Why would I want to own one?

Long Beach has been home to many Own Your Owns over the years. They can be found throughout Downtown Long Beach, Alamitos Beach, Bluff Park and into Belmont Heights; older, usually 2 or 3 story buildings tucked between newer and sometimes taller buildings.   Recent Condo Conversions have trimmed the numbers of available OYOs considerably. OYOs used to be a really good investment, selling for considerably less than Long Beach Condos, they proved to be a very desirable purchase. When they successfully converted to condominiums owners realized large profits.  Often condo conversion was the motivation for purchasing an Own Your Own.

Many buyers ask about OYOs.  They want to know if they are the same as a condo, or more like a stock cooperative.

OYOs are similar in ownership to condos in that they are both fee simple ownership with individual tax bills and deeds. OYOs are a pre-condominium form of ownership, mostly built in the 50s. They generally sell for less than condos and are occasionally candidates for condo conversion, if they qualify, at which time they increase in value dramatically. Often OYOs will not have sufficient parking to qualify for condo conversion.

OYO Financing

At this time there is very limited financing available for the purchase of OYOs. Few are selling, those that do sell are often all cash purchases, or seller financing. Traditionally FNMA and FHA have not supported home loans for OYOs.  OYOs are difficult to sell which is a major drawback to purchase.

UPDATE:  There is limited financing available for owner occupied OYOs, with strict guidelines:

  • Buyer must purchase as their primary residence, no non-owner occupieds will be considered.
  • Minimum 20% Down Payment is required – no exceptions.
  • Mimimum FICO score is 640.
  • Owner Occupancy rate in building must be 55% or higher.  (If this standard is not met down payment requirement will be increased to 40% or more.)
  • No stated income loans are available.

Condo Conversions

Many existing buildings, which have already been approved for condo conversion, have opted not to convert at this time.  Current market conditions of Long Beach Real Estate and the high cost of conversion have made condo conversion cost prohibitive, at this time.  This bodes well for our city as the number of conversions in recent years has bitten deeply into the cushion we have in our apartment vacancy rate.  The conversions of recent years have removed many rental units from the market here in Long Beach.  With the high number of foreclosures many families are in need of affordable rental housing, which is becoming increasingly difficult to find.

Income Properties

The silver lining in all of this is that landlords will profit; income property sales, which have been stagnant will begin to revive, rents will increase and vacancies will not be an issue.  Hey, somebody always wins :)

Read More Details

Laurie Manny
Long Beach Realtor (562) 212-5420


Main Street Realtors Belmont Heights 244 Redondo Avenue Long Beach California 90803


Long Beach Real Estate BlogLong Beach Real Estate Website




Long Beach Own Your Owns-OYO-OYOs-Condo Conversions-Income Properties in Long Beach
Posted on May 5, 2008 by Laurie Manny
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Long Beach Condo Buyers Beware

The condo market in Long Beach, and nationwide, may be in for a few rather large shockers which could rattle more than a few cages.  We have already come across several HOA\'s in, or very near, serious financial jeopardy.


Buying Fixer Upper Homes in Long Beach

Many buyers who are searching for homes in Long Beach express interest in purchasing a \"fixer upper\" . It is always interesting to hear what their idea of a \"fixer upper\" is. There are so many levels of fixer upper it is necessary to clarify what the buyer has in mind.


Buying Long Beach Homes

Issues for the \"First Time Home Buyer\"

With so many Long Beach homes on the market at affordable prices one would think it should be really easy to find a home and get a great deal. So why are so many first time buyers having trouble finding a home that suits their needs at a price they can afford?


FHA Loan Limits

FHA loans are available to a maximum loan of $729,750 with a minimum 3 to 3.5% down payment until January 1, 2009 when they are currently scheduled to drop the maximum loan amount to $625,000, this could change.


  • Single Family Home or Condo : $729,750
  • Duplex : $934,200
  • Tri-plex : $1,129,250
  • Four-Plex : $1,403,400

7 Steps to Pre-Home Purchase Preparedness

    1-Choose a Lender 2-Checking Credit Scores Prior to Starting the Purchase 3-Be Pre-approved Prior to Searching 4-Have A Solid Financial Plan 5-Insist on a Lock-In Letter 6-Demand a Loan Commitment 7-Waiting to Sell Your Home


Long Beach California is Best Neighborhood for Walking

One of the most appealing draws to living in Long Beach California is the walkability of many of our local neighborhoods.

Long Beach California has been ranked as the 8th Most Walkable Neighborhood!


Relocating to Long Beach California?

If you are relocating to Long Beach California you will need lots of information. You will be curious to know about Long Beach communities , neighborhoods and resources . We have tried to include as many area resources as possible here to make your transition a smooth one.

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