Tour a Home – Get a Timeshare?

Up for sale is a million dollar home located blocks from Monrovia and the gang shooting area months earlier. But that aside, if safety isn’t your top concern, then this property seems to be promising:

316 Laurel Ave
Arcadia, CA 91006

Listing Price: $1,085,000

  • BEDS: 4
  • BATHS: 4.5
  • SQ. FT.: 3,201
  • $/SQ. FT.: $339
  • LOT SIZE: 6,350 Sq. Ft.

A typical overbuilt cookie cutter home. It was upgraded in 2001 and according to the seller,

There are so many Amenities that I can’t list them all. You must come and see the home for yourself. Furniture negotiable.

Sure, you get a lot of living space. But for $1,000,000+ I’d expect some privacy too. Check out the backyard; you can almost shakes hands with your neighbor from window to window!

Sales History

11/1990 $670,000
05/2001 $555,000
10/2006 $1,080,000

Listing History
Jan 11, 2008 $1,150,000
Apr 19, 2008 $1,085,000 (-$65,000, -5.6%)

So wait, all the “upgrades” were actually done by the previous owner and now this guy wants nearly double the 2001 sales price? It’s going to take more than a measly 5.6% price reduction to get rid of this home and the owner knows it. The listing description says it all:

Attention all Guests! Seller is giving away 3 days/2 nights vacations, with 26 different destinations to choose from. This is not a raffle. No purchase necessary. Just come and take a look at the property.

So how can they afford to give away free vacations to all visitors? Sounds too good to be true, right? You’ve probably guessed it from the title but I believe the sellers are just “giving away” vacations normally offered by Timeshares. All the recipient has to do is sit through a 2-3 hour sales pitch and be pressured and ridiculed into buying a share of a vacation home.

In the end, you’re given a voucher for a “free vacation” which includes blackout dates and restrictions that usually isn’t worth your time figuring out.

This seller actually put a $200,000+ downpayment on his home. How much do you think he will get back after months of depreciation, 6% commissions and the inevitable price reductions?

Perhaps I will stop by this weekend and insist on getting my 2-night vacation with no strings attached.

7 thoughts on “Tour a Home – Get a Timeshare?”

  1. First, let me say your site should be required reading before any purchase [and sale for that matter] of real estate. You would think some of this would be common sense?

    OK, what kind of imbecile builds a 3,200sf home on a 6,000sf lot? Hello, City of Arcadia, fire your entire planning staff. My 3rd grade daughter designs better than that!

    Imagine swimming in your skimpiest bikini enjoying your pool and….what’s that, the teen age boy next door is video taping you. Soon to appear on utube…. ” Knife catching home buyer taking another bath “. Too close for comfort. Might as well get a townhome.

    This listing epitomizes what can go wrong and how even SoCA RE can not go up in value. Check the Refin data, property sold in 1990 for 670k then sold again in 2001 for 555k. That’s NOT a typo. The property LOST $115k over an 11yr period. I bet that seller was pissed!

    And I am afraid we are going to be looking at the same thing here in SoCA. A period of 10+yrs of no appreciation.

  2. The AP just reported today that U.S. foreclosure rates are soaring 48% YOY. These numbers are aweful, considering this is only the begining of the housing crisis as more adj loans are due to reset. Renting is definitely the smart thing to do in times like these. Check out this article about Tulsi Tanti, the Indian billionaire. ($3 Bil.) Guess what, Mr. Tanti and his wife live in a rented apartment in Pune, India-,1518,559370,00.html

    Despite all the doom and gloom, though, sellers on redfin are still sticking to their astronomical prices. I don’t blame them, who’d want to lose 100K or more on their home?

  3. I wouldn’t. But the alternative is to either lose double that amount or have your credit rating trashed. The longer these sellers hold out, the more they’re paying into a depreciating asset.

    Tk, that article on Tanti is great. Although I doubt he’s renting due to to a housing crisis (similar to ours), it goes to show that owning doesn’t always have to be your only option. We will look back one day and laugh at how many people became slaves to their mortgage.

  4. I will be in the arcadia area august 27th thru sept 1st.
    I am interseted in touring the place. Can you offer a free vaction for these days for touring the place and entertaining an offer for the timeshare?
    My number is 414-324-8588. My name is Pastor Don Rogers.

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