Things Are Looking Up

By James Buckley   |   March 21, 2019

Nothing Earth-shattering going on, but the new look at the northwest corner of Coast Village Road and Olive Mill Road is indicative of what I believe has become a rapid upward swing in sentiment and outlook in this little corner of the world (see Kelly Mahan Herrick‘s Village Beat report on the handsome and finally completed multi-use building at the southern entrance to the lower village, beginning on page 12).

Of course, the weather has had a lot to do with it. The precipitation we’ve received over this rainy season – so far – has been on the whole both abundant and gentle. Which means that most fears concerning a repeat of the January 2018 event have diminished considerably. Homes and businesses in the “Red Zone” are also feeling the relief (though, we’re knocking on unburned carbon here, as we still have a good three weeks to go before we’re out of storm season). And, by July, the Swiss nets should be in place.

Recently, in these very pages, in conjunction with one of my sometimes annoying Editor’s notes on the letters page, I opined that if I had any extra money to invest, I’d be looking in that very “Red Zone” for real estate bargains. To that effect, there were two three-bedroom condominiums that had languished on the market and another about to become available that were for sale, all under $800,000, and all in the Montecito Union School District. Neither directly outside the units themselves – two of which were hard against Montecito Creek – nor the nearby surrounding area had been properly staged. Stacks of crumpled sandbags were strewn on the side of the access road that paralleled the creek, and more sandbags were lined up across the bottom of both condominiums’ garage doors. “No wonder they hadn’t sold,” said I to myself.  Even so, by the time I got around to considering whether or not to pursue the idea of making an offer, they all went. Gone. Poof. And, asking prices on other properties have firmed; buyers – many buyers – have arrived from… who knows where?

All of which bodes well for the immediate and intermediate future of this little bifurcated burg of ours. Now, don’t you feel better? I know I do. Way better.


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