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Prop Guru: The Real Thorgusen Story

Our Property Guru, smelling fresh meat, comes out of hiding to add his two cents to our meme on the Thorgusen Residence, as mentioned yesterday in our price chopper feature.

"The Thorgusen property, compromises aside, has sat for 143 days plus mostly due to mis-pricing.

Forget $1,895,000. The property was originally marketed by (famous over-pricing) agent Jonah Wilson at $2.4 million dollars. After sitting for a while, it was reduced to $2.2 million dollars where it sat still. From there, the property was de-listed and then returned to the market listed with the more reasonable (wow, who would think you’d be able to say that) Crosby Doe at $1,895,000. The subsequent reductions were his.

Crosby represented the sale of the house in January of 2004 - to the current owner - for the much more reasonable $1,430,014 (per Property Shark, quoting city records). Two years into ownership, a price of $1.8 would have seemed to be a reasonable expectation. However, several factors have weighed in. First, the house is almost unchanged, with the exception of a new really ugly paint job, not present at its last sale. Additionally, the house is fairly dark inside, amplified by its interior canyon setting and lowish ceilings. Lastly, since 2004, a number of rain-induced landslides have closed Laurel Canyon, made the news, far worsened the traffic (bad to begin with) and conspired to suppress property values in the canyon.

The house also sits in a cluster of three Thorgusen’s, including the highly published re-invention/re-imagining done by Juicy founder Pamela Skaist-Levy. That house, interestingly, changed hands quietly (pocket listing) for $3 million plus (to a peer of her husband Jeff) during the exact same time the “discounted” house languished on the market. I got a private tour and the two properties cannot be compared except in original inspiration.

Images of that house are included in this LA Times article from 2004."
· Pedigree Homes: Still Chopping Away! [Curbed LA]