Neighborhoods & Appreciation

A client of mine emailed to ask how he should research L.A. neighborhoods to best guess appreciation.  This is how I responded:

Honestly, everyone has their own opinions on the future. I like Highland Park, Atwater Village, certain parts of Glassell Park, and Mid-City for units. I like Montecito Heights for single family houses.  I think Eagle Rock and Mt. Washington have already been mined.  Lincoln Heights and Boyle Heights have the longest to go, but they can be had for cheap and will get there eventually.

I’d recommend going to lunch on a Sunday in each of these places and driving around.  Take a look at the parks, the major streets and see what kind of stores are there.  What you won’t be able to see on those tours is nightlife, but, relatively speaking, nightlife is sparse in these areas.  You have Verdugo Bar in Glassell Park and The York and Johnny’s Bar in Highland Park, and Atwater Village is well developed. However, Mid-City is a short distance to Miracle Mile, West Hollywood, Hollywood, and Culver City, so it’s valuable at minimum for its proximity.  Also, Paper or Plastik café is a new cornerstone of culture and gentrification in that neighborhood on Pico just east of Fairfax.

While market trends are a good indication of what the future holds, you have to get a feel for these neighborhoods yourself and, ultimately, your own gut is the best to trust.

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