Echo Park Real Estate: A Look at the Numbers

From LA’s earliest days, people have wanted to live in the storied neighborhoods of NELA. In a densely populated area where residents are always in the process of coming and going, there are always homes for sale in Echo Park at any given time. Since the early 1920’s, the real estate here has been in demand and that is how it is today. Why? Let’s take a closer look and see what the numbers say.

This is an eclectic city located in Central Los Angeles about ten minutes from Downtown. At the center of the city is the renowned Echo Park Lake in Elysian Park, which is the site of special events like the Lotus Festival. It is northwest of Chinatown and Downtown, northeast of Westlake and south east of Silver Lake.

It is split in to four districts.

• Angelino Heights – This area is known for the beautiful Victorian homes that are preserved by the city’s ordinances.

• Elysian Heights – This area is historically known for being the home of famous counter-culture artists, filmmakers, architects and political radicals.

• Historic Filipino town – This section is located in the southwest section.

• Victor Heights – A lovely area scattered with Bungalows and Stucco homes that share breathtaking views of Los Angeles and the Civic Center.

Throughout the four districts, the most common types of homes are Bungalows, Cottages, Victorians and Stuccos. According to the 2000 U.S. Census there were 40,455 people in there. Spread over 2.4 square miles there were approximately 16,868 people per square mile. This makes Echo Park one of the highest density areas in Los Angeles County. The median household income was $37,708, which is low for Los Angeles County. The average household size was 3.0, which is average for the county.

This city has a high Walk Score of 83/100. This means that most errands can be accomplished on foot within the city. This city’s transit score is 62. This city has good transit and provides its residents with many public transportation options. These include the Metro Red and Metro Purple Line, numerous bus routes and ride sharing options from Relay Rides. This city received a bike score of 49 because of the steep hills and minimal bike lanes.

According to Zillow, the average home value in Echo Park is $795,100. This value has increased 14.4% since last year and Zillow estimates it will continue to rise 4.3% to $829,000 over the next year. The average price of homes that are currently listed is $742,450. The median list price per square foot is $618, which is higher than the Los Angeles average of $451. The average rental price is $2,967 a month. Zillow has given the Market Health a score of 8.2/10, which is very healthy in comparison to other markets across the country. This is based on a series of metrics including how fast the homes are selling compared to the past rate. Echo Park’s prime location and thrilling culture will be sure to keep the housing market rolling for many years to come.

Real Estate in Florida – Boom or Bust

In the first few years of the real estate boom in Florida, buyers went crazy at the sight of empty houses and plots for sale. Speculators bought under-construction apartments but after 2005 the frenzy subsided. Price undercutting, falling sales and auctioning of properties were as rampant as defaulting on mortgage payments and foreclosures.

While beaches, amusement parks, casinos, nightclubs in their proximity do help make lucrative sales when it comes to real estate purchases, yet buyers today are exercising more caution. For bargain hunters too, the time is right to cash in on a property and cash out eventually once the market heats up. Discounting is prominent where sellers are desperate to get the property off their hands. Massive price cuts in a bid to lure buyers result.

Southwest Florida witnesses prices for properties on golf courses or in their proximity or even closer to the waterfront steadily rising. Conservative architecture on the other hand is being pressurized and prices elsewhere are tumbling fast. Brokers involved in selling existing properties are competing with those selling newer ones and the situation is getting more difficult for the former who have to compete with upgrades and generous incentives of the latter.

While smaller cities in Florida State are faring better than those cities with not much development, they are being spared the impact of the real estate bust. Florida Keys is one area which is witnessing restrictions in new construction because of a shortfall in land available. Naturally investing in residential real estate has also fallen in response. However, there are adequate brokers willing to bet that buyers will have the purchasing power to invest in a spacious second home between Miami and Florida Keys.

In the soft market, conditions are such that there is no saying what kind of properties will be lapped up and what will remain unsold. Property auctions though allowing the sellers to get some returns on their investment are highly unpredictable. If the piece of real estate is at the lower end of the investment hotspot, there is a chance it will get sold, for a buyer can either rent it out or build on it. Speculating on a bigger property has its risks with no knowing of which way the market may turn.

Seeing this, a question that echoes in many minds is how long will this downturn continue? The higher priced and top of the pick real estate properties are queuing up and by the end of 2008 the numbers will increase. Though the purchasing power of the rich has not been affected there is a limit as to the number of residences even the millionaires will want to invest in, in Florida. So where are the buyers?

Some of the key problems of real estate investing in Florida stem from the high property taxes and home insurance premiums which soar post hurricanes. In the event of these being resolved, Florida’s real estate market is all set of witness a second boom. Those of us who have been watching the trends very closely especially in Florida agree that it is just a matter of time.

Colorado Real Estate

enver, Colorado, the Mile High city, is a wonderful place to visit and live. Besides the Rocky Mountains, world-class skiing and mild summers, the Denver area has so much more to offer. The real estate market is booming, there are plenty of places to buy in and around the greater Denver area.

Sports fans will love moving into their new Denver home because there are professional games all year round. Denver is the only city in the US with professional teams for all five major sports – Denver Broncos are part of the NFL, the Avalanche are members of the NHL, the Denver Nuggets are the NBA team, Colorado Rockies represent Denver in the MLB and the Colorado Mammoth are members of the NLL. There are hundreds of minor leagues and college teams that play as well.

If you prefer to play rather than watch, the opportunities are endless. Cycling, running, fishing, hiking and white water rafting will keep you near the ground all summer long. During the winter, skiing, snowboarding and ice climbing will thrill you. Spring and fall are great times to take up something a little more adventurous like spelunking (cave exploring) or rock climbing.

Boulder, a suburban area about 45 minutes from the heart of Denver, is a great place to live if the outdoors call to you. Sports spectators might want to look for real estate in the city of Denver or a little further south in Lakewood or Golden.

Looking for a place to raise a family? Golden, Colorado offers more than Coors Brewery. With a charming downtown and a multitude of playgrounds, the City of Golden has a small town feel with the big city conveniences close by. A very active recreation center, superb community celebrations and average homes ringing in at $260,000 keep Golden near the top of the list of All-American Cities.

Log cabins are right at home in the mountains that surround Denver. A quick 30 minutes south of Denver is the picturesque mountain town of Morrison. Homes come on more acreage than in metropolitan Denver but Morrison is just as close as many other suburbs. Purchasing real estate in Morrison will find you about 45 minutes from Loveland ski area and 30 minutes from Echo Mountain snowboard park.

When looking for Colorado homes for sale, keep these things in mind:

o Temperatures dip down to zero occasionally during winter months. Heat sources should be in good working order from September through April. Summer heat may cause the thermometer to rise to between 90 and 100 degrees. While heat waves – and air-conditioners – are rare, ceiling fans and swamp coolers may be necessary from May through September.

o Weather changes quickly, without warning and frequently. In a single day you may experience snow falling followed by rain showers followed by a high of 60 degree heat. Always keep a blanket and sweater or jacket in your vehicle. An umbrella helps, too.

o Basements are common in Denver properties. Look for water damage and signs of structural damage in the basement before making an offer.

o Denver isn’t called the Mile High City for nothing. The altitude is greater than 90% of the US, the air is thinner and oxygen is more limited. Don’t overdo exercise the first week or two and stay hydrated.

The secret to finding perfect Denver, Colorado real estate is to figure out exactly which amenities are important to you, what your budget allows and to communicate this to your real estate agent. There are many Colorado homes for sale and a competent real estate agent will be able to match your needs to what the market is offering.