I was looking up property for a Client in downtown San Diego and noticed the number of short sales and foreclosures. Most of the reduced property is located in the high rise buildings and mainly in the newer or condo conversion buildings. A lot of development of downtown happened from 2000 to 2006. Gentrification of the downtown area started taking shape in the late 1990’s. When I first moved here the downtown area was very similar to other cities with an area for tourism, “The Gas Lamp” and a bunch of buildings and shady areas in between. This has very much changed since the 90’s as San Diego’s downtown got a face lift.
San Diego has a beautiful skyline already with the back drop of the bay, it is gorgeous, but the real estate boom in earlier 2000’s really put downtown on the map. When you compare famous downtowns like San Francisco, Chicago, New York, and others, San Diego’s downtown is a bargain! The good news is all the improvements that have been made over the past few years that make downtown San Diego a great place to live. Petco Park was one of the newest additions to downtown which has helped along another community of East Village. There are pockets of downtown such as Banker’s Hill, Little Italy, and more that are very distinctive from each other making every area unique.
The big surprise is the median sales prices are very reasonable! I pulled a search of condos under the sales price of $400,000 and was amazed to find 132 listings. Contributing to the listings are the many short sales and foreclosures. I saw that the high price that pulled up was a three bedroom and two baths for $449,000 with 1,435 square feet! The median sales price for a 788 sq. foot condo with a one bedroom and one bath (not much room for anything else) is under $300,000 at $299,775. The median two bedrooms and two bath in downtown San Diego is $362,950 with 1,059 sq. feet. There are currently 28 active two bedroom listings that are averaging just 72 days on the market. This is a great time to invest in America’s Finest City’s downtown.
Here are some of the reasons besides the obvious that I feel make downtown such a great buy. The prices are now down 40% from their highs and there is plenty of inventory. I did a show for HGTV back in 2005 “What you get for the Money” and was the featured Realtor and showcased three condos in downtown San Diego. One was a studio for $349,000 (a beautifully done condo conversion project located of 2nd and Market…I actually almost bought one of these. Another condo was a two bedroom, two baths for $549,000 in the same project. I had to find another one in the 400k range which I found one in Banker’s Hill for $425,000 for a two bedroom and one bath.
The best reason for investing in downtown is the proximity. It is a major city next to Mexico, downtown is bordered with water and highway 5. There really isn’t much of land mass in downtown San Diego and a very progressive downtown. Some other improvements are newer grocery stores, restaurants within walking distance; you can see the San Diego airport and the planes landing, and the many shops, bars, nightlife, and more all within walking distance. Once this downturn in the market changes you will have wished you owned a piece for San Diego real estate is such great prices! Downtown San Diego is constantly improving and always