The rich have clearly gotten richer during the Great Recession and its aftermath.
And perhaps the greatest indicators of this unprecedented cash grab are the soaring real estate prices of the Golden State. Even as home values reach record levels, there are buyers out there making all-cash offers. (Who are these people?)
The real estate information service DataQuick says million-dollar-plus home sales reached a 7-year high in the second quarter of 2014. It recently broke down the California neighborhoods with the biggest share of those sales for the quarter. Here are L.A.'s top 6:
6. Hollywood. Hollywood?! Yep. The community also known for its gangs and immigrant enclaves now has blue-blood real estate prices. DataQuick says that 79 homes in Hollywood sold for $1 million or more. The highest selling price was a whopping $4.5 million. We assume the area analyzed here includes the Hills, where the prices escalate with the elevation.
5. Rolling Hills Estates. This probably comes as no surprise. The Beverly Hills of the South Bay represents with 86 million-dollar-plus sales in the quarter, which is actually less than the 90 reported during the same time last year, according to DataQuick. The most-expensive house went for a cool $8 million.
4. Beverly Hills. Yes, the icon of American real estate wealth is only No. 4 on this list, which tells you how crazy the market in SoCal has become. B.H. had 101 $1 million-plus sales (fewer than last year's 104). The top seller was priced at $13.5 million.
3. Brentwood. This Westside enclave killed it when it comes to the most expensive home sold in the area during the second quarter: It saw a $40 million home sale. There were 105 $1 million-plus sales in the community, compared to 126 last year.
2. Pacific Palisades. Brentwood's neighbor to the west did 107 $1 million-plus sales in the quarter, six fewer than last year. The top seller was a property said to be worth $20.5 million. We hope it has an ocean view.
And the community with the most million-dollar (and above) home sales is ...
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1. Manhattan Beach. The champion of the L.A. market also topped the list of all California communities with the most $1 million-plus home sales in the second quarter of 2014, according to DataQuick. M.B. saw a whopping 146 $1 million-plus properties change hands, two more than it had last year. Its most-expensive home was purchased for $12 million.
DataQuick analyst Andrew LePage says:
These buyers, especially those in the multi-million-dollar market, are less likely to agonize over credit scores, income and job security, down payments and mortgage interest rates.