Bohemian Rhapsody

This is real.

This is happening.

All a seller has to do is list, and the buyer will make him move.

In my blog “See, Spot, Buy or Sell” in January, I said “Shiller and Roubini have always given a pessimistic projection of the economy. But, in my opinion, when irrational exuberance begins, it’s good to keep ourselves educated of things to come. We have not entered a bubble phase but with unemployment for Orange County at 7.0%, Dow Jones at 13,435, low inventory and buyer desperation, Irvine can expect a mini bubble this year.” Looks like the bubble has here, and there is nothing mini about it! We have beaten the 2005/6 prices in some areas, and in some we are about to clear that hurdle. “Irvine is different” say our Realtors.

Maybe Irvine IS different. Different because it doesn't depend on local/state/national economy only- part of the real estate market is run by the foreign cash buyers who think with its stellar schools and safety, buying a house in Irvine for all cash is a better investment than anything else in the world right now. As an Irvine homeowner, it is tempting to list my house and make hay while the sun shines. But that would also mean taking my suitcase full of cash and moving to lesser desirable neighborhoods, unless we want to pay the same premium back to another property in Irvine. A lot of Irvinites are in the same boat. But trust me, it's an addiction, living in this city of white cars, math-music-martial arts classes and international grocery stores. Then there are schools.

Here is 196 Rhapsody, listed at a price higher than what the owner paid in 2005, when the house was built.

Listing Price: $650,000

HOA Dues: $203/mo.

3 Beds/ 2.5 baths

Area: 1,300 Sq. Ft.

Price/ SF: $500 / Sq. Ft.

Builders Tract Name: Cortile (WDCT)

Builders Tract Code: Cortile (WDCT)

Builders Model Code: 3

Property Type: Residential, Condominium

Community: Woodbury

Here are the highest Price/SF for the Cortile homes in Woodbury since they were built:

2006: $520/SF

2007: $524/SF

2008: $408/SF

2009: $420/SF (Lowest $347/SF)

2010: $441/SF (Lowest $347/SF)

2011: $409/SF (Lowest $330/SF)

2012: $406/SF (Lowest $306/SF)

Last Sale Price for the property: $532,000, in July 2005.

What do you think? Ready to move, or ready to make someone move?

I will let this bubble pass, watch it grow and pop from the sidelines, and may be write a “would have” “should have” post later. What about you?

Share your thoughts at Talk Irvine. While you are there, check out the thread “Newer listings in Irvine with…