Everyone wants a piece of San Diego real estate, including getting a condo in downtown with a great walk able lifestyle and near perfect weather. If you’re going to live the dream, why not buy a brand new condo in San Diego. Opportunities to buy a brand new condo are shrinking as of spring 2010.
The buildings you can still buy a brand new luxury condo in are: Aria, Bayside, Breeza, The Legend, The Mark, Mi Arbolito, Sapphire Tower and Se Luxe Residences. Currently there are no condominiums under construction and I don’t expect any new condos to begin construction until 2012 at the earliest. Several reasons factor into that prediction, one is the difficulty in obtaining construction financing and the second is the lack of faith that developers can sell their condos once completed.
Sure the market has picked up some momentum as seen in the high volume of sale at about 80 units per month in downtown so far in 2010. In general, Bayside, Breeza, The Mark and Sapphire Tower are about 70% sold, inventory at The Legend and Mi Arbolito is down to about a dozen units each.
At the Legend all the better view units have been sold and on all the remaining two bedrooms they have for sale only have one parking space. Mi Arbolito seems to be on hold again for some reason. I know all the units are finished except for maybe flooring or finished they left for the buyer to select.
At Aria, they are down to about six high floor penthouse style units. The Bayside condos have a great selection of units across all price points. Breeza also have a wide variety of their inventory to choose from. The Mark, has mostly one bedroom left with some larger more expensive two and three bedroom condos still available on the higher floors. Sapphire Tower has a good selection of one bedrooms from the $400’s to at least 5 of the almost 3,000 SF units for approx $2.5M. The Se Luxe Residences is such a unique property that sales there seem to be slow, its also for the very discriminating condo shopper looking for the lifestyle of a full service five star hotel.
One thing to notice about all the newer condos is that none of them are located in the Gaslamp District or the Marina District as there is are only two lots left to build on between them, one will be a Marriott hotel the other a condo by Bosa in the distant future.
When we get to the upswing in the next real estate cycle new projects will be built mostly in East Village, a very limited number in Little Italy and Columbia neighborhoods. I would say all but three of the future condos will be built on less than optimal locations. The best micro locations have already been built and it will be interesting to see over time the balance of values between say an older condo in a prime location vs a new state of the art condo in a second rate location. This is what makes shopping for a condo in downtown San Diego such a fun and challenging process.