This Tiny Punchbowl Condo Got 12 Offers

In the end, it came down to the letter.
Seaview Condo
Photos: Rachel Ross 


At Sea View, a modest three-story walk-up apartment unit on Prospect Street came on the market last week and immediately received a full-price offer. The offer was all cash and a quick close. It wasn’t enough.


The 546-square-foot condominium with an 87-square-foot lānai, one bedroom with sliding shoji doors painted a purple-gray, new paint, flooring and appliances, sat on the third floor of a white concrete block walk-up. The building itself could use a little TLC—maybe a pressure wash, and it was built in an era when it was fashionable to have bricks stick out like pimples.


The neighbors were nosey in the best way, asking those who came to see the apartment if they needed help finding anything. The building immediately felt safe and like a community. We weren’t the only ones who felt it. After less than a week on the market, the seller’s agent had 12 offers for her clients to review.


Seaview Condo


What was it? The price, for starters: $285,000 for a clean, safe-feeling condominium with a low monthly fee, nice neighbors and an ocean view is a bargain. It was also beautifully staged: clean, simple, open and warm. The seller’s agent was welcoming and smart.


What made the seller choose the lucky new owner? It wasn’t price alone, although one of the highest offers was likely selected. It was also the connection the seller felt with the buyer, whose agent had included a letter introducing them. It’s common practice, but still not every agent does it. Some would argue that it always comes down to the bottom line, but when the market is this competitive, every little thing matters.


What did we learn? There are gems out there, even in our high-priced market, and our stories of who we are and why we love a home can make all the difference.


Read More Stories by Rachel Ross