RE/MAX Gateway
Mark Bolender

RE/MAX Gateway
Santa Clarita. Los Angeles. Santa Monica. Malibu

Tag: santa monica 1st time b uyer

Wonder What One Million Dollars Buys You in Santa Monica? (Updated)


Almost everyone visiting Southern California, at some point dreams of living in Santa Monica, the beachy, upscale city by the sea we keep hearing so much about. Transforming from Estates, bungalows and Craftsman homes to high rises and giant tech companies in a matter of a few years, it is now known as Silicon Beach, home to Google, Snapchat, Youtube and many more.  Yet over time, some things have remained constant here, the ambience of a European village where neighbors know and care for one another, the peacefulness that comes from living in nature with the sand, sea and lush parks, the vibrance that enhances ones quality of life where fitness and exercise are daily mantras, and perhaps above all, the mission to embody good vibes only.  For these reasons, people really, really, really, really, always want to live here.  But, you might ask, is it feasible, is it affordable, is it possible?  Well, just for fun, let’s see what about $1,000,000 buys you today in Santa Monica.

Not a huge surprise that most homes in Santa Monica are over $1,000,000.  There are 123 homes currently for sale altogether, 20 homes priced under $1,000,000 and a mere 5 properties priced right around $1,000,000.  These  properties are below.

Mpa of SM

1017 PEARL Street #A, Santa Monica 90405  (Withdrawn)

West of 11th – East of 10th

Located in the popular Sunset Park neighborhood, this townhome is one of only 5 units and is the least expensive, priced at $917,000.  Built in 1978, with 2 bedroom, 2.5 bath and 1219 square feet, it has been completely remodeled with elegant architectural elements of massive glass windows and skylights, infusing it with light everywhere.  The kitchen boasts stainless steel appliances and quartz counters.  There is a romantic fireplace, laundry in the unit, a small balcony off the master suite that lets in the inspiring ocean breezes and a gated garage.  Conveniently located just 10 blocks from the beach, it is near 3rd Street Promenade, Rose, Main and Abbot Kinney Streets.

1320 PRINCETON Street #104, Santa Monica 90404   

South of Wilshire – North of Santa Monica – East of 26th  

This single story Westside condo, in a gated community of 22 units, was built in 1972, and is close to Brentwood and UCLA.  It is being offered for $949,000.  The splendid courtyard entry leads to 3 bedroom, 2 bath and 1670 square feet.  The light and bright interior boasts hardwood floors throughout, granite counters and stainless steel appliances adorning the kitchen, a dining area, inviting fireplace and community garage.  Not far from the beach, there is excellent shopping and great schools in this family oriented neighborhood.

1334 19th Street #4, Santa Monica 90404  (Sold for $935,000)

Santa Monica and 19th 

A spacious, two story condo in a 6-unit building, this home has 2 bedroom, 3 bath and 1414 square feet.  Recently reduced in price to $968,000, it was built in 1981 and is situated on a beautiful street lined with majestic Palms. The open floorplan features a living room with wood burning fireplace, breakfast nook and a dining area that overlooks the private patio.  The built-in bookcases include a 55” flat screen TV.  An extra storage room and elegant powder room complete the first floor.  The second story features 2 bedroom suites, a full size laundry room and a large, cedar lined walk-in closet.  The junior bedroom suite has a full bath and lush view of the neighborhood.  Parking is in a secure, gated, underground garage, and an extra large storage room is close by.  Move-in condition!

1114 23RD St # 4, Santa Monica 90403  (Expired Listing)

North of Wilshire – California @ 23rd 

A rare, single story condo, built in 1959, this 3 bedroom, 1.5 bath home with 1604 square feet, is priced at $1,059,000.  In a gated community with 5 units total, it is highlighted by a remodeled kitchen, hardwood floors, crown moldings and a wood burning fireplace.  The cheerful master suite has 2 closets while the third bedroom is being used as a den and has built-in bookshelves and a walk-in closet.  Entertainers’ dream outdoor patio has built-ins and storage.  Washer and Dryer can be added to this unit.  Conveniently located by the shops and restaurants along Wilshire Boulevard, just minutes to the beach, and in the sought after Franklin School District.

1240 25th Street, Santa Monica 90404   (Sold for $948,300)

Between Arizona and Wilshire 

This delightful tri-level townhome in the heart of Santa Monica has 1413 square feet with 2 bedroom and 2.5 bath with a large loft.  There are only 4 units in the complex and it is available for $1,075,000.  High vaulted ceilings, lustrous, dark wood flooring and stainless steel appliances add a sense of class.  The master bath and guest bath have been upgraded with chic details including Kohler fixtures.  There are a washer and dryer in the unit.  The bottom patio has play equipment while the second story patio is tranquil, with roof access for a full patio set.  Secure parking is located under the building and the HOA only $200 monthly.  Situated in a neighborhood where everything is at your fingertips, you’ll never want to leave.  Mc Kinley Elementary School is only one block away.  Leave your windows open to feel the cool breezes from the ocean all day!

1014 S 4TH St # 8, Santa Monica 90403  (Sold for $920,000)

4 Blocks from the Beach – 2 Blocks North of Wilshire – 2 Blocks South of Montana

Just 4 blocks from the beach, this is a rare single story property with 2 bedroom, 2 bath and 1144 square feet.  This 11-unit building was built in 1969 and the condo is listed for $1,099,000.  A front unit with nobody living above you, lots of natural light pours in.  The unit features an updated kitchen, hardwood floors and natural stone bathrooms and the bedrooms are all on one side, affording privacy, perfect for entertaining.  There is gated parking for 2 cars and a large balcony space.  All appliances are included and the furniture and artwork are “available upon request”.  Ready to move in, this is a premier location to basque in the Westside Lifestyle.  Popular Roosevelt Elementary School, Montana Avenue, 3rd Street Promenade and the sparking blue Pacific are all nearby.  Feel those tantalizing ocean breezes day and night.

Perhaps one of these premier properties, nestled in the village of Santa Monica, has piqued your curiosity.  Call me, Mark Bolender, RE/MAX at 310.857.4956 or 661.714.0510 to arrange a private tour of these homes or any home in the greater Los Angeles area.

The Secret of Searching for Homes While Protecting One’s Privacy

By Mark Bolender.  

Picture is copyrighted and courtesy of FreeBirdPhotos and Shutterstock

The internet has changed the style and process of the home search for the past 23 years. There are literally hundreds if not thousands of real estate search websites. In addition, there are many thousands of real estate IDX agent web sites which shower the modern buyer with loads of both fresh and sometimes old information.

The purpose of these search sites featuring real estate listings is both to share information, while also collecting your personal information. With your personal information, they can sell you real estate now and or possibly sell you something else in the future. These sites retrieve all real estate listings from the Multiple Listing Service portals but these sites are not always quite as fresh as the MLS source itself. Which sites truly protect your information?

We do encourage our buyer clients to feel free to search the more reputable sites like Zillow, Trulia and Realtor.Com for real estate listings. As in the past, buyers who prefer this self-directed search process will then forward the newly found listings to me so I can verify its status, access and duplicity in our Multiple Listing Service. This is fine.

However, many savvy buyers just hire a Realtor and or Broker Associate like me to scour the MLS, Zillow, Trulia and other lender REO foreclosure lists. The main reason is that a good Realtor isn’t going to miss anything in his 24/7 automated searches for his clients. The second reason is that an intellectual buyer really wants his or her information protected by one agency, not many different ones. This is the best, safest and most professional way to search.

After all, why should the buyer have to work so hard searching for same exact listings I’ll send them, while at the same time giving up personal information to half the world?   A smart buyer can just entrust it to a single broker associate in a large firm like mine who has privacy standards in place, as well as E & O Insurance. Be safe, not sorry later.

Our Buyer Representation Process: After our initial consultation over the phone or in person, we do issue the buyer an email link with a list of the current available properties that match the buyer’s search criteria. This totally cool software then monitors the listing databases 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Whenever a new listing comes on the market or an existing one reduces the price, the buyer and I are again notified via a collaborative automated email listing alert.

We make it easy for the buyer to mark up the listings he likes. Buyer just needs to click on the email link and designate the properties he really likes with a heart icon or a lightbulb icon if buyer just slightly interested. Properties that buyer doesn’t like at all can be manually marked by click its trash can icon. Buyer can leave me his comments at same time.


Rent vs Buy: Why We Live in Santa Monica at all Costs

Rent vs Buy: Why We Live in Santa Monica at all Costs

UNADJUSTEDNONRAW_thumb_6b6 UNADJUSTEDNONRAW_thumb_630Nobody understands the motivation to choose to live in a beautiful, vibrant, and exciting beach town setting better than the residents of Santa Monica, California. The cost of living is enormous compared to national averages, and running a few Santa Monica value checks may be slightly shocking. According to the National Cost of Living Index, Santa Monica ranks well near the top of the most expensive areas with an overall cost of living rating of 211. California on the whole ranks 135 and the national average is 100. For housing, respectively, Santa Monica rates a 450, California scores an 189, and the national average is- as a comparative- 100. The average cost to rent in Santa Monica is approximately $3000.

Rent vs Buy

Nevertheless, in the face of these staggering prices, many people elect to endure the lack of affordable housing. Why? Well, that’s easy. Santa Monica is home to the beautiful Silicon Beach, offers a fast-paced lifestyle in a stunning seaside region- where so many living spaces are perched over some of the finest examples of coastal and city scenery in the country. Not only that but just behind the city, to the east, are a sweeping range of endless hills and wilderness, much of which are open to the public.

When faced with the choice of whether to rent or buy, many Santa Monicans make their choice to live in Santa Monica feasible by foregoing homeownership to remain lifetime renters. What few of these renters realize is that they may qualify to purchase high rise condos for between 5% and 10% down. Many young families who need a home instead of a condo can qualify for a loan buy a larger home outside of Santa Monica for just 3.5% down FHA, and veterans can receive a loan for 0% down.

With opportunities like these available, we think more people could choose to stay in this one of a kind California beach town.

About Us

Picture of Mark Bolender

Mark Bolender

Cal BRE# 01065007

661-714-0510661-714-0510 mobile

Mark Bolender has been a driving force for good, in the Southern California real estate scene for 25 years. His innovations in service, technology and transparency has given him a rewarding career with many clients. "Calm, cool and collected" best describes him. Detailed and caring define his character. His first hand knowledge of the housing industry and Southern California culture blends with his seasoned experience in helping people and negotiating on their behalf. Mark feels strongly about assisting people in finding real estate that will enhance and enrich one's life.