Boyle Heights Real Estate – A Market Study

Boyle Heights Real Estate – A Market Study

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Boyle Heights Real Estate -The Next Silver Lake

The Boyle Heights Real Estate market is one of Los Angeles’ most “up and coming” neighborhoods.  Situated adjacent to the Arts District of Downtown Los Angeles, its real estate market is poised to see increases due to an overflow from the Downtown area.  Its location combined with recent redevelopments, including the purchase of the Sears Tower – a centerpiece of Boyle Heights – by Downtown developer Izek Shomof, makes the Boyle Heights real estate market one of the most promising areas for investors.

Overview of Boyle Heights Real Estate

Boyle Heights is located just east of the Los Angeles River, adjacent to the Arts District of Downtown Los Angeles.  According to the Los Angeles Times’ Mapping Los Angeles project, its population is approximately 100,000, approximately 94% of which are of Latino descent – the fifth highest percentage of Latino residents within Los Angeles County.  Its residents are relatively young, with a median age of 25.  Relative to the rest of Los Angeles, it has a high proportion of residents aged 25 and over who do not have a high school diploma or college degree.

The Boyle Heights real estate market consists largely of multi-unit and mixed-use properties – in the past three months, 64% of sold residential properties were multi-unit properties.  Many of its commercial spaces are contained in mixed-use properties, with residential units on the top floor and commercial space on the bottom.  In the third quarter of 2014, the median sale price of a single family home was $300,000.00 and the median sale price of a residential income property was $425,000.  Generally, Boyle Heights is primarily a residential neighborhood with a rich Latino culture.

Boyle Heights Real Estate Trends

Boyle Heights’ convenient location and affordable real estate, combined with the boom of Downtown Los Angeles and the Arts District, has resulted in a recent influx of buyers and investors looking to create and capitalize on potential growth in the area.  Some of the most notable recent developments have been a new Walgreens in 2012, the 2013 sale of Sears Tower to Downtown developer Izek Shomof, and the introduction of the first free-standing Starbucks in Boyle Heights in July of 2014.

These developments have, predictably, resulted in increases in the price of residential property in the Boyle Heights real estate market.  In the last three years the median sale price of residential income properties in Boyle Heights has risen a staggering 73.25% compared to Los Angeles County’s 53.85%.  In that same time period, the median sale price of other residential properties in Boyle Heights has risen 50.75% compared to Los Angeles County’s 42.71%.

Esquire Real Estate Brokerage Boyle Heights Real Estate Median Prices* Data Source – theMLS

The disparity between the increase in residential income properties, as compared to other residential properties, is likely due to the effect of investors and commercial purchasers entering the market before home-buyers.  Based on the recent commercial developments and rapidly increasing price of residential income properties, it is reasonable to expect that 2015 will see an accompanying surge in the value of all Boyle Heights real estate.

Gentrification Concerns And “Gentefication” In Boyle Heights

The influx of investors, combined with the historically high percentage of Latino residents, has raised significant concerns of gentrification in the area.  In fact, one unfortunate real estate agent who distributed fliers in Downtown stating “Why rent Downtown when you could own in Boyle Heights” and offering to take individuals on a bike tour, issued an apology after being accused of contributing to gentrification in the area.

At the same time, there has been a counter-movement by the Latino community, calling improvements “genteficiation“, deriving from the Spanish word “gente” meaning “people”.  The term refers to Latino and Hispanic investors who are focusing on improving the area while maintaining its culture.  This phenomenon is largely unique to Boyle Heights in that it has seen a significant influx of former residents who are interested in returning to their home and improving the area for future generations.

Overall, the Boyle Heights real estate market is poised to see surges similar to Silver Lake and Echo Park due to its proximity to Downtown Los Angeles.  At the same time, it also raises gentrification concerns similar to those that were also raised in Silver Lake and Echo Park.

If you would like to further discuss how Esquire Real Estate Brokerage, Inc. can help you in the Los Angeles and Boyle Heights real estate markets, feel free to give us a call at 213-973-9439 or send us an email at info@esquirereb.com.

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