Jennifer Landon’s Complete Homebuying Guide for Beverly Hills

Jennifer Landon’s Complete Homebuying Guide for Beverly Hills

  • Jennifer Landon
  • 09/5/22

Beverly Hills is home to some of the most luxurious homes and properties in the world. It’s safe to say you can expect a different buying experience here than in most other areas, and that doing your research and putting in the effort can help you make the most of your homebuying journey. If you’re in the market for luxury Beverly Hills real estate, consider Jennifer Landon’s exclusive homebuying guide to get you the home that fits your unique lifestyle, desires, and needs.

Find the right Beverly Hills realtor

Navigating one of the most unique real estate markets in the country demands the help of an experienced and exceptional realtor with their finger on the pulse of the Beverly Hills market. Before you start searching for properties across the area, find a local realtor with a track record of helping buyers find their dream homes. The right Beverly Hills realtor can make or break your homebuying experience. With over 18 years of hard-earned industry experience, Jennifer Landon's team is here to help welcome you to your new Beverly Hills home.

Know your price range

Your budget determines just about every decision along your luxury real estate journey in Beverly Hills. You already know that houses in the area are far from cheap, and you can expect to find a handful of properties that come close to exceeding your budget. Setting a budget and knowing your price range helps to narrow down your search while easing the overwhelming aspects of making a decision.

Buying a home in the renowned 90210 zip code means you can expect a median property value of $2 million, which is nearly nine times greater than the national average. Buying a home here means living amongst the epicenter of luxury, where the finest shopping, restaurants, landscapes, and architecture elevate the experience of everyday life. Living here is like living out a dream. And fabulous dreams are expensive.

You already know Beverly Hills is home to some of the most expensive properties in America. What you may not know is that home prices are up over 10% with most homes selling for just 1% below listing price. However, ultra-luxury homes can sell well below listing.

In fact, the 157-acre “Mountain of Beverly Hills,” just 10 minutes from Rodeo Drive, sold for $100,000 over a $1 billion asking price (granted, the story behind the sale involves a heated court battle, a last-second offer, and a sparsely-attended auction behind a fountain in Pomona). However, this Bel Air mansion also sold for $94 million with an original listing of $250 million.

We see more over-the-top price tags being substantially slashed in recent years. Just last year,  the cheapest home in Beverly Hills sold for $929,000, landing the new owner a two-bedroom, two-bathroom house. The average monthly mortgage payment in Beverly Hills hovers around $4,000.

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Appreciate the appreciation

The value of luxury Beverly Hills real estate rises over time on a regular basis. While this may sound like bad news for a person in the market for a home, there’s a silver lining. After all, you’re not just buying a home but making an investment. The home comes first on your priority list, but next in line is your ever-increasing long-term investment. It’s no wonder Beverly Hills is home to some of the country’s wealthiest people.

Think of the area as a blue chip stock where the value holds over the long run. Nine times out of 10, you can expect your Beverly Hills home to appreciate. Over the past decade, the area has seen 73% growth, which is a staggering percentage over the 3.8% national home appreciation average. How big is home appreciation in Beverly Hills? Greater than 90% of real estate nationwide.

Think about your property taxes

Property taxes go hand in hand with your real estate budget. You can expect a rate of 1.1%, or $25,215, annually for the average property. The good news is that California’s controversial Proposition 13 protects you from large tax increases over time. However, expect to pay fair market value as a new homeowner with your property tax hikes limited after the first year.

Consider traffic and your commute

Let’s be honest: good motor vehicle traffic is anything but synonymous with Beverly Hills. This just means your daily commute requires a little more planning. Your top two goals for your commute: manageable and convenient. From running errands and shopping to day-to-day travel, think about how long you can expect to get around town.

Plan for extra home insurance

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Wildfires, earthquakes, and natural disasters make Beverly Hills a place to think about extra home insurance. The average home insurance plan covers fires, but in Southern California, we recommend extra fire coverage for reconstruction, replacement, or repairs beyond the limits of your standard policy.

Raging wildfires earned California the number one spot for wildfire risk in the country. Earthquakes hit less often but still give residents a reason to think about some extra peace of mind. Beverly Hills sits on a fault line between minor and major earthquakes and most insurance policies fail to cover earthquake damage without an extra plan.

Inspect first, fall in love second

Roof leaks, mold growth, and other issues can make a good Beverly Hills home go bad, which is a reason to stay cautious with your expectations, especially before the home inspection. The last thing you want after falling in love with a home is an inspection report filled with problems. So, before you envision yourself in your future dream home and before you even get excited about the property, make sure that the home inspection turns up clean.

Despite the futuristic, trendsetting new builds popping up around Beverly Hills, you can still expect to find plenty of older houses that especially need the reassurance of a home inspection with the hefty price tag attached. From the electrical and plumbing to termites, mold, water damage, and retrofitting, you always want your future home built up to code. Earthquake safety is another key aspect to identity in your Beverly Hills home inspection.

Consider the option to rent

Plenty of people are in the Beverly Hills real estate market to rent. If this describes you, remember that the average rent for a two-bedroom apartment in town is around $2,950. Expect to pay upwards of $10,000 to rent a single-family home, which is the medium cost per month in the area. However, large apartment complexes are the single-most common housing type, making up a little less than half of the housing units in Beverly Hills, with studios being the least common type of rental unit. The good news for renters is that Beverly Hills is one of the select few LA cities with rent control.

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Don’t fear property that needs a little love

Before you enter one of the nation’s most expensive luxury real estate markets, keep in mind that a house in need of some work can still prove an excellent investment for your money. A move-in-ready home is great, but a home in need of a few improvements may be your diamond in the rough. Remember that you’re buying a property and not just a home. That less-than-perfect Beverly Hills property may be just the ticket to getting into an exciting market.

Consider the seasons 

January, February, and March are the best months of the year to buy real estate in Beverly Hills. Anticipate a market with fewer buyers competing for the same homes and more sellers willing to accept a lower offer. While there’s nothing wrong with launching your homebuying journey during the summer months, the more popular house-hunting season usually means paying more for a property.

Act fast when you find something great

There’s only one problem with that perfect Beverly Hills property: it’ll sell fast. When that dream home finally comes along, the last thing you want to do is pump the brakes. The best time to make an offer on a home you want is right now. Just like finding an otherwise dream home that fails an inspection, the home you lose out to the competition will fill you with the same disappointment. The other problem with waiting too long is opening a window of opportunity for another buyer to come along and jack up the price in a bidding war. Find the right middle ground between doing your due diligence and striking while the iron is hot.

Let’s welcome you home

With over 18 years in the Beverly Hills luxury real estate industry, Jennifer Landon has had the honor of welcoming people home hundreds of times. She has successfully navigated the vastly changing market and helped hundreds of clients buy their homes. She’s a broker specializing in the Beverly Hills market with a client-first approach that sets her apart from other agents in the area. Honesty and integrity, coupled with a strong business and marketing background, offer Jennifer’s clients the security that they’re in good hands. If you’re ready to begin your real estate journey, reach out to Jennifer Landon for a seamless experience.

*Header photo courtesy of Shutterstock

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Jennifer's vast experience sets her apart from the crowd, as she is not your everyday Realtor®, but a real estate expert that understands and guides her clients and her agents through each step.

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