According to Coastal Living Magazine, Hermosa Beach was the 10th “Happiest Seaside Town in America” for 2016. Not bad. As a 25+ year resident of this coastal community I have to agree!
From West Coast to East, Great Lakes to Gulf, meet the 10 coastal towns that are sure to make you smile—for a weekend or a lifetime.
- Find a real estate professional who is the right fit for you. Home buying is not only a big financial commitment, but also an emotional one. It’s critical that the Realtor® you choose is both skilled and a good fit with your personality.
- Timing the market. There is no “right” time to buy anymore than there is a right time to sell. If you find a home now, don’t try to second-guess the interest rates or the housing market by waiting. Changes don’t usually occur fast enough to make that much difference in price and a good home won’t stay on the market long. See article on trying to time the real estate market.
- The most important opinion is your own. It’s natural to want reassurance for such a big decision, but too many ideas will make it much harder to make a decision. Don’t ask for too many opinions and trust your own instincts.
- The Big Picture. Accept that no house is ever going to be perfect. Pay attention to the things that are most important to you and let the minor things go. Make the decision based on whether you would be happy in the home.
- Keep negotiations realistic
Negotiation is definitely a part of the real estate process, but trying to “win” by getting an extra-low price may lose you the home you love and although the difference may sound like a lot, it may be an insignificant difference over the life of a 30 year mortgage.
- Remember your home doesn’t exist in a vacuum
Don’t get so caught up in the physical aspects of the house: room size, kitchen, floors, etc. that you forget such issues as amenities, noise level, neighborhood, etc. that have a big impact on what it’s like to live in your new home.
- Get pre-approved. Don’t wait until you’ve found a home and made an offer to get approved for a mortgage. Not only is getting pre-qualified quick and easy, but there is no obligation. Finding out how much you can afford, whether your credit could use some repairing, and what your monthly payments might be, is a significant step toward buying a house and making the process less stressful.
- Factor in maintenance and repair costs in your post home-buying budget. Even if you buy a new home, there will be some costs. Don’t leave yourself short and let your home deteriorate.
- Accept that a little buyer’s remorse may happen but will probably pass.
Buying a home, especially for the first time, is a big commitment, but it also yields big benefits. It is common to question your decision but in the long run, home ownership is usually a fantastic opportunity.
- Choose a home first because you love it; then think about appreciation.
A home’s most important role is as a comfortable, safe place to live. With the increases in value in the early 2000’s, people have begun to think of their home strictly as a way to make money. Make sure your home is something that you’ll enjoy living in for
a long time.
- Why Buy a home instead of renting
- Considering a move? Steps to take
- The home search. Choosing your home
- The home search. Finding out how much you can afford
- The pre-approval process
- The difference between getting pre-qualified and pre-approved
- Down payments
- What does your mortgage pay for: PITI
- The home loan process
Whether you are considering buying a home in the Hollywood Riviera, Redondo or Torrance or own a home and are considering listing and selling it, we’ve tried to make it as easy as possible to start the process. Please click on any link below for helpful information on that topic. You can search for homes, get the value of your home, receive listing updates or search the area.
The Hollywood Riviera is an ideal place to call home for many reasons but certainly high on the list is the location. Sitting between the beach and the hills of the Palos Verdes Peninsula, the Riviera gets the best of both worlds. It’s just a short walk to the beach but the sloping hillside location makes for some tremendous ocean views and beach breezes. The area actually extends all the way to the ocean as one of the premier streets, Paseo De La Playa, has a number of spectacular homes with large properties extending to the high tide line along Torrance Beach. While the beach and the views are certainly a highlight, there’s plenty of reasons that the neighborhood is ideally situated. As it’s on the border of the South Bay and the peninsula it’s a bit removed from the busy feeling of some other South Bay cities but close enough to enjoy it all.
Just down the street is the very charming shopping and dining area known as Riviera Village. From weekly farmers markets, to holiday festivities to the appeal of strolling past the shops and restaurants on a summer evening. It’s a wonderful small town feel with an abundance of places to visit.
Beyond the Riviera Village is the Redondo Pier area and King Harbor. Offering a fishing pier, a variety of restaurants and bars, whale watching boats, kayak and paddle board rentals and more, this area really epitomizes the beach lifestyle. Famous landmarks like Old Tony’s with it’s crows nest upper bar with endless views of the ocean feel more like being on a ship than in a restaurant. Other popular spots are Kincaids, The Bluewater Grill, Shade Hotel, the Portofino Inn, R-10 Social House, Naja’s, and the Cheesecake Factory overlooking the harbor and boats.
Just up the hill are the various shopping centers and charming areas of Palos Verdes including Malaga Cove, Lunada Bay and more. Palos Verdes is also a great place to take a hike or go for a bike ride.
For outdoor activities the area doesn’t disappoint. Take a jog or ride on the oceanfront bike path that extends all the way from Torrance Beach to Redondo, Hermosa, Manhattan and all the way to Santa Monica. The area also happens to be the beach volleyball capital of the world with courts seemingly everywhere. If the water is your thing, there is great surfing all along Redondo and Palos Verdes, snorkeling and diving off of PV or exploring the Redondo marine canyon.
Large shopping centers are a short drive away and include the South Bay Galleria, the Del Amo mall, Manhattan Village and plenty throughout the area. For additional dining options explore the charming downtown areas of Manhattan Beach, Hermosa Beach and pier plaza, and the Old Torrance downtown area.
Without question ocean views are pretty important and in most cities they’re not protected in any way. You may buy or live in a house that has spectacular ocean views only to have them disappear at some point. It’s not just the views that are impacted but the light and breezes as well. These ocean views have immeasurable value from both a quality of life aspect as well as monetarily. Big ocean views can be the difference in hundreds of thousands, and sometimes even millions of dollars. In many of the South Bay cities these views are unprotected and it’s not rare for a home’s stunning ocean views to disappear when the one story home next door gets torn down and new and much larger home replaces it.
Certain areas of Torrance are the exception. Primarily found in the Hollywood Riviera and Seaside Ranchos neighborhoods the city has incorporated much stricter building guidelines known as the “Hillside Overlay” area. (see map below)
In 1977, the Hillside Overlay Area was established in Torrance, CA in order to address issues concerning building, remodeling, and protecting views and privacy. All new construction (meaning both new homes and expansions on current structures) are subject to review and input by neighbors including “flagging” where a mock up of the future structure are marked with plastic flags to approximate the outlines of any proposed addition to the structure prior to permit approval so that neighborhood input may be obtained.
The basics of the hillside overlay are as follows: Upon receipt of the complete application, the Community Development Director shall set a date, time and place for a public hearing thereon as soon as practicable and shall send notice thereof to the owners of land included within a three hundred (300) foot radius of the exterior boundaries of the land for which the permit is sought
No construction and no remodeling or enlargement of a building or structure shall be permitted unless the Planning Commission (or the City Council on appeal) shall find that the location and size of the building or structure, or the location and size of the remodeled or enlarged portions of the building or structure, have been planned and designed in such a manner as to comply with the following provisions:
- The proposed development will not have an adverse impact upon the view, light, air and privacy of other properties in the vicinity;
- The development has been located, planned and designed so as to cause the least intrusion on the views, light, air and privacy of other properties in the vicinity;
- The design provides an orderly and attractive development in harmony with other properties in the vicinity;
- The design will not have a harmful impact upon the land values and investment of other properties in the vicinity;
- Granting such application would not be materially detrimental to the public welfare and to other properties in the vicinity;
- The proposed development will not cause or result in an adverse cumulative impact on other properties in the vicinity.
Please note that most of the information on this page is from the City of Torrance website and regulations posted in 2018. We cannot guarantee the accuracy of any of the information and recommend checking with the city for any/all information, regulation and restrictions.