The Malibu Condo Market

The the Malibu condo market can be a reliable bellweather to the overall market.

The Malibu condo market gets much less attention than the housing market. Fewer celebrity buys, lower prices, fewer sales units than houses. But the local condo market can be a reliable bellweather to the overall market. Prices can bend upward just as well or better than estates during some periods.

Witness the adjacent chart, which reveals the average sale price in 2012 was $822,000. That is for all condos/townhouses in the 90265 ZIP code. Last year, it was $1,335,000 — a 62 percent increase.

The Malibu Condo Market

There is a different way to measure average, using median price. By that measure, the appreciation was more modest, going from $670,000 in 2012 to $932,000. The $262,000 increase was healthy, but only 39 percent.

Often, it just depends on what sampling you are taking. For now, lets review the Malibu market as a whole, including every condo that sold, on the beach or off, from one end of Malibu to the other:

• Sales over the five years featured (2010, 2012, 2014, 2015, 2016) peaked in 2015 and had a drop off last year, though it was fairly normal production, overall.

• Volume has been about $100 million the past two years for the local condo market.

• The past two years have been robust in big sales (over $1 million), just as more units in Malibu have seen their fair market value rise to that tier and above.

To better focus on the heart of the market, 10 Malibu complexes are highlighted and their statistics round out the chart. They are selected for their size — particularly Malibu Canyon Village (104 units), Tivoli Cove (104 units), Malibu Villas (117 units) and Malibu Bay Club (144 units, though deluxe beach front units are excluded), and for their homogeneity — all the complexes are stocked with units of similar sizes and characteristics — and general values. More than half of Malibu’s condos are represented within the “benchmark” list of complexes. 

The number of sales and average sale price is described for each complex in each corresponding year. Here the median value takes a larger jump, likely more reflective of the market as a whole. The 10 complexes saw a median value (where half the sales are for lower, and half are higher) of only $447,000 during 2012. The market was heavily laden with low-priced condos selling at that time, with places like Malibu Canyon Village, Malibu Villas, Tapia and the Malibu Bay Club struggling to maintain their values. Those four places and the others are far better off now, as seen in last year’s prices, which measure out to a $776,000 median value — 74 percent higher.

The index list reveals that more than half of Malibu’s overall sales are represented. The rest of Malibu’s condo complexes run in generally the same direction. Still, many of the identified communities have seen better than 50 percent increase in the performance of their average sale price (not median). Malibu Canyon Village is up 64 percent. Malibu Villas sees 58 percent. The Pointe has risen 55 percent. Those three places represent nearly the full spectrum of condo pricing.

The lowest condo sale price so far this year in 90265 has been $730,000. There have only been a few listings even listed below $700,000. The low end is a very tight market at this time and, possibly, no more units will sell below $500k unless they are unusual one-bedroom in size. Practically nothing has been on the market in Malibu Canyon Village and Malibu Gardens, which are Malibu’s most entry-eligible locations.