What Does a Million Dollars Buy You?

Posted on April 1, 2014 | by Denny Oh


San Diego isn’t the cheapest place to live, but it might be one of the nicest places…in the world!  The weather rarely fluctuates more than a few degrees and I’ve spent many “winter” days out at the pool, BBQing, drinking beers and getting tan.   I recently came across a Wall Street Journal article that displayed what $1M would buy you in some of the “top global cities,” which makes San Diego look even better.

In 2013, the average price per square foot in downtown San Diego was $467.81/sq.ft.  So in theory, you could buy a little over 2,100 sqft with a million dollars – much better than the 692 sqft you could get in Los Angeles, or the 432 sqft in NYC, or the $221 sqft you could get in Hong Kong.  If you refine your search and only look at the luxury highrise buildings (with a view) in San Diego, then you’re closer to about $650-900/sqft, which would buy you 1,111-1,538 sqft.  If you took the most expensive properties that have recently sold downtown, at about $1,000/sqft, you’d still end up with a 1,000 sqft condo, which is 45% more than what you’d get in smoggy, crowded, annoying LA.

YTD there have been only four downtown sales between $900K-1M, with two more in escrow and only two active listings.  The sales were in Harbor Club, Electra and The Grande and ranged from about $553-645/sqft.  In 2013, there were a total of 18 downtown condo sales between $900K-1M.  In the first quarter of 2014, there were only 182 sales, there was a 20% decrease compared to Q1 2013.  The average sales price was $569,701 – up 13.4% from last year and market times are down to an average of 47 days, selling 16.7% faster than Q1 of last year.

My guess is that we’ll see a steady increase in inventory this year (but no new construction) and the lower end slow down (as interest rates rise).  We’ll probably see more movement at the higher price points and see a lot of cash buyers as people pull out of the stock market.

If want to buy real estate in one of the best cities in the world, or need help selling it, please contact me, Denny Oh, at 858-243-2092 or [email protected]

ps – Click here if you want to see what a BILLION dollars buys you!


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