The Malibu real estate report


Sampling of Malibu sales as the year ends.

By Rick Wallace/Special to The Malibu Times

December in the only month that Malibu real estate activity distinctly slows down. The rest of the year can be busy at any time and there is no particular season. Any month can be the busiest, though spring tends to be best. As soon as the weather clears up, we will begin to get an idea of what kind of year 2005 will be.

Many of the important indicators suggest we remain in a good market and it will be so for some time. The inventory is exceedingly low once again. Consumer confidence in the region is up. Interest rates are low and far from threatening. Perhaps most importantly, housing starts in the Southern California area are far short of population growth. The crush continues.

With that backdrop, the following sales of Malibu homes, single-family residences having closed escrow since Oct. 1, give a sense of the robust values for Malibu as 2004 concluded.

A celebrity-owned property in the Winding Way area just sold for $2.8 million. The home was originally built in 1990 and has travertine floors inside and out and mahogany doors within the home of four bedrooms and four baths. The property, with excellent ocean view, is nearly two acres. The home was remodeled following its purchase in 2001 for less than $2 million.

Atop the Saddle Peak ridge, a beautiful Tuscan-style home with high ceilings sold for about $1.8 million. Designed by a local architect, the home overlooks the Santa Monica Bay and much of the West Los Angeles area. The three-bedroom home, in a gated neighborhood, has about two acres, though much of it is hillside. The home was rebuilt from the 1993 fire, completed two years ago.

A Malibu Park home with less than an acre sold for about $1.7 million. It has ocean views to the west and, located near the equestrian park, is suitable for horses. The three-bedroom home with two stories is a contemporary from 1973.

The latest sale price in the Sea View Estates is $1,450,000, seemingly the typical price in the mountain neighborhood. The property has ocean views and a beautiful yard with walking paths, pool and spa. Behind a three-car garage are four bedrooms on one story. French doors lead to gardens from many rooms.

A home on Broad Beach has sold for nearly $8.5 million. The house has a huge back patio near the sand with a spa and barbecue and a guesthouse adjacent to a garden courtyard. There is 40 feet of beach frontage. The home features four bedrooms and five baths, including a master suite upstairs with the optimal view, in Mediterranean style.

In nearby Malibu West, a five-bedroom home has sold for $1.2 million. It has a larger backyard than most and there is a pool. The home had only one owner since 1963. Two other homes on the outer mesa have sold for just under $1.5 million and over $1.6 million. Both have ocean views; the latter totally remodeled with top quality.

A newer modern-style contemporary home in the Rambla Pacifico area sold for $2.2 million, located on the corner of a knoll with at least 180 degrees of view. There is a detached office and separate studio. The home is three bedrooms with several floor-to-ceiling windows throughout.

With very unique contemporary architecture, a Kanan-area home originally built in 1989, has sold last for $2.1 million. The layout is a long, horizontal cylinder with 20-foot arched ceilings and has an ocean view. The home sold for $1,125,000 in 1998 and for $1.6 million last year.

A Serra Retreat property of about three acres of mostly flat grass and gardens sold for $3.2 million, an increase of $1.5 million from its sale two years ago. The home was completely remodeled with Venetian faux walls, and there is a veranda overlooking the expansive grounds. Behind gates, the home has two bedrooms.

Two homes in the back section of Corral Canyon have sold for about $1.2 million. One home, a white contemporary, sold for the fourth time in seven years. It has five bedrooms and three levels of living space, with nice landscaping. The second home, nearby, features a gate and also pleasant landscaping. The home was updated with hardwood floors and has three bedrooms with mountain views. Additionally, there is a children’s play yard with a tree house.

A seven-acre estate with a large white contemporary home of about 7,000 square feet sold for more than $3 million. The home, also in Corral Canyon, sits on a prominent knoll with expansive ocean views, pool, spa, and guesthouse.

An estate with two homes on about one and half acres, once celebrity-owned, has sold on Pt. Dume for about $3.3 million. The entire property was refurbished in recent years, particularly the exterior landscaping and hardscape. The second home is really a large guesthouse, and there are eight bedrooms total on the property, behind gates. There is a pool and sports court.

A home on Malibu Road was reported to have been sold at $6.4 million. Located near “flat rock”, the home is virtually new. The house has a state-of-the-art AV system, five bedrooms and floors of teak, mahogany and limestone. The entire second story is a master suite.

The latest sale in La Costa Hills is a home originally built in 1960 that closed escrow for $1.7 million. With lots of wood and decks, this tree house sort of home has terrific ocean views, and boasts five bathrooms.

Rick Wallace of the Coldwell Banker company has been a Realtor in Malibu for 17 years. He can be reached at his Web site,