So Much for a Real Estate Slowdown . . .

By Mark Ashton Hunt   |   September 14, 2021

What a difference a month (of big sales) can make.

In my last article reviewing Montecito’s Real Estate activity for June and most of July, I focused on the lack of sales of more than $10 million. In that writing, I also noted an overall sales volume decline that put sales numbers closer to normal summer months and not like the 40+ homes we saw selling per month during the past year or so. I even opined that a real estate slowdown might be on the way… 

Well, time told the story, and I was speaking too soon in retrospect, when within a week or two of that article, four homes closed escrow for more than $10 million, with a few more to follow in August. So, the more than $10-million market is still very much alive. 

Additionally, August sales overall were up from June and July, as 33 homes closed escrow in Montecito, in the Multiple Listing Service (MLS) during August. Of these 33 homes, four sold for more than $10 million — the high being 699 San Ysidro Road which closed off market for a staggering $28 million. Additionally, six sales were “off market” (meaning the home was not for sale, but a buyer found a seller and they did a deal). That is a huge percentage of sales in the off-market category, and most of those that closed off-market were more than $8 million. 

As of this writing on September 3, there are only 41 homes and condos on the market in the MLS to choose from in all of Montecito and the greater 93108 area code. Another shocking fact is that there is nothing for sale under $2.5 million at all in the MLS. I’ve never seen this before in my 10 years of writing this article. Furthermore, most of our listings in Montecito are priced at more than $5 million, with approximately 35% of all homes on the market being offered at more than $10 million. 

Montecito is quickly becoming a place where only the very wealthy can afford to buy and build, where in years past that was just the perception of Montecito but is now in the moment a fact. That said, if you are looking for a home in Montecito under $5 million (with only 11 homes and condos to choose from under $5 million), here are a few of the very few to choose from.

1274 Eleven Oaks Lane – $3,095,000

This home is located on a private lane in a convenient location, near Butterfly Beach, the shops and restaurants on Coast Village Road, and just a few blocks further to the Rosewood Miramar Hotel. The four-bedroom, two-bathroom home features air conditioning, a fireplace, and sunny outdoor areas that are perfect for indoor/outdoor living complete with a fire pit and a patio offering ocean views.

Resting on a .32-acre lot on a street that rarely sees a home for sale, this is a rare offering within the Montecito Union School District.

1903 Coyote Circle – $3,499,000

In west Montecito, near the intersection of Coyote Road and Sycamore Canyon Road, find this single-level Mediterranean style home. Perched on a private hill and offering mountain and some ocean views, this home is one of a small group of homes that share a community pool on a small cul-de-sac style street. The home is tucked away behind gates up a long driveway of alluring gardens on a .81-acre lot. The home features three bedrooms and two-and-a-half bathrooms with views of the setting, mountains or ocean from every room.

Much attention to detail was given in the remodel, which includes Iron fixtures designed for the home by Steve Handelman. Additional features of the home include high beamed ceilings throughout, skylights, Venetian plastered walls, cut stone and European plank floors, an orchard of various fruit trees, and extra parking for four or more cars.

2350 Bella Vista Drive – $4,250,000

Enjoy panoramic ocean views in a secluded Montecito location just minutes from the Upper Village and surrounded by many significant and more expensive estates. More than three acres with its own deep water well on top of the hills of Montecito and within the Montecito Union School District, this two-story California ranch home with walls of windows, private porches, lounge terraces, and rustic arbors seamlessly connects to the sunny native landscape. Additional spaces on the property provide opportunities for a pool and additional structures. 

Enjoy the updated kitchen and bathrooms with classic quartz, marble, porcelain & stainless finishes as well as the all-new HVAC, plumbing, electric & appliances. A large ocean view accessory building presents endless possibilities as a yoga studio, exclusive guest accommodations, garage or the ultimate home office.

2815 East Valley Road – $4,425,000

This Montecito hideaway blends the beauty of nature with everyday living. Tucked down a gated driveway near the corner of Ladera Lane in east Montecito and framed by mature oaks and stone accents, you are welcomed to the nearly one acre of lush grounds. Evoking a sense of calm and privacy, the four-bedroom, four-and-a-half-bathroom main house was custom built with rich Brazilian wood, beamed ceilings and walls of glass, encouraging a seamless communication between the interior and exterior.

The property also boasts a two-bedroom guest house with a living room and kitchen. The residences evolved from the surroundings, drawing you outdoors and embracing the natural beauty of the site and providing a compound for extended family living or room to pursue hobbies and welcome guests.


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