Author Topic: Advice on getting rid of a lot of land parcel split 4 ways  (Read 430 times)

jeromedawg

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Advice on getting rid of a lot of land parcel split 4 ways
« on: February 03, 2019, 02:26:36 PM »
Hey all,

Curious what you guys might advise on behalf of my in-laws who own a lot of vacant land in an undeveloped area (Lancaster, CA) that they went in on with 3 other friends back in the 2005ish timeframe. I'm not sure what they were thinking - maybe that they'd come out ahead before the housing crash. Anyway, I know they paid around $106k for it back then. Land value per the assessor's office is $125k roughly. They got an LOI from a commercial RE company offering $55k for the entire lot a couple years ago but they ignored it. We told them to get out and have their friends buy out their portion but I'm not sure if their friends will be willing to do that at this point... if they did they might have to offer their friends a 'discounted' buy out to make it more appealing. Anyway, I don't think they ever asked probably because they'd be ashamed to "back out" but who knows. It seems like a mess of a thing they got themselves into so we're just trying to figure out how they can get out of it, especially because they pay property tax on it and it's more a black hole than anything.

BTW: it's zoned/rated for industrial use and is located right across from a small airfield/airport that I think is primarily used for cargo and other mostly non-commercial purposes.

Any ideas or suggestions?
« Last Edit: February 03, 2019, 02:37:51 PM by jeromedawg »

Cassie

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Re: Advice on getting rid of a lot of land parcel split 4 ways
« Reply #1 on: February 03, 2019, 02:55:19 PM »
So does each person own a lot or do 4 people own one piece of land? If they each own separately I would list it with a realtor.

jeromedawg

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Re: Advice on getting rid of a lot of land parcel split 4 ways
« Reply #2 on: February 03, 2019, 03:13:53 PM »
So does each person own a lot or do 4 people own one piece of land? If they each own separately I would list it with a realtor.

I believe they split the lot itself (an acre in size) 4 ways so all four of them own the land. I was looking at the grant deed and it's not clear to me though or I don't really know how to properly interpret this: "East 1/2 of the East 1/2 of the North 1/2 of the Northwest 1/4 of the Northwest 1/4 of the Northwest 1/4 of Section 1, Township 7 North, Range 13 West....." - not sure but I think that's describing the section of the lot that they own?
« Last Edit: February 03, 2019, 03:18:19 PM by jeromedawg »

Cassie

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Re: Advice on getting rid of a lot of land parcel split 4 ways
« Reply #3 on: February 03, 2019, 03:23:46 PM »
Sounds like they need a lawyer that specializes in this type of thing to see if they can sell just their part.

jeromedawg

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Re: Advice on getting rid of a lot of land parcel split 4 ways
« Reply #4 on: February 03, 2019, 03:33:37 PM »
Sounds like they need a lawyer that specializes in this type of thing to see if they can sell just their part.

*sigh* - not what I was hoping to hear... I've learned that mentioning "lawyer" to them only causes them to they bury their heads in the sand. Ah well, it is what it is. I'm not sure how they'll ever get out of this unless they sell at a loss or get really lucky and find a buyer who will pay them the assessed value.

Another Reader

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Re: Advice on getting rid of a lot of land parcel split 4 ways
« Reply #5 on: February 03, 2019, 04:16:07 PM »
What you are looking at is the legal description of the parcel.  You should look at the grantee information instead.  Likely it describes each party as having an undivided 25 percent interest in the property.

You should call one or more commercial brokers in the area to get comparable sales and listings to estimate the value of the property.  Let them know there is an interest in selling.  If it's worth anything, perhaps they can convince the other three parties to sell.  Otherwise, they can ask the other three parties to buy them out.

If they cannot sell the property for the assessed value and they are stuck with the property, they should file a "request for review" with the assessor's office.  Any comparable listings or sales in the area or that offer they received can be used as evidence.  At least they can get the taxes reduced.  If the assessor does not respond by July 1st, they can file an assessment appeal.  Lancaster is in LA County IIRC.

Here is the land commercial brokers have for sale in Lancaster:

https://www.loopnet.com/california/lancaster_land-for-sale/

Without more detail, I can't narrow the market down except by lot size.

Bottom line, asking prices for land in Lancaster might support selling the property, but you need more information.

jeromedawg

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Re: Advice on getting rid of a lot of land parcel split 4 ways
« Reply #6 on: February 03, 2019, 06:30:34 PM »
What you are looking at is the legal description of the parcel.  You should look at the grantee information instead.  Likely it describes each party as having an undivided 25 percent interest in the property.

You should call one or more commercial brokers in the area to get comparable sales and listings to estimate the value of the property.  Let them know there is an interest in selling.  If it's worth anything, perhaps they can convince the other three parties to sell.  Otherwise, they can ask the other three parties to buy them out.

If they cannot sell the property for the assessed value and they are stuck with the property, they should file a "request for review" with the assessor's office.  Any comparable listings or sales in the area or that offer they received can be used as evidence.  At least they can get the taxes reduced.  If the assessor does not respond by July 1st, they can file an assessment appeal.  Lancaster is in LA County IIRC.

Here is the land commercial brokers have for sale in Lancaster:

https://www.loopnet.com/california/lancaster_land-for-sale/

Without more detail, I can't narrow the market down except by lot size.

Bottom line, asking prices for land in Lancaster might support selling the property, but you need more information.

Thanks. I don't see anything else on the Grant Deed but I'll check again. Right now with the sale of their restaurant there's a commercial broker helping them but they (and we) are not a big fan of him. We may try to find someone closer. 


In any case, this is the parcel they hold - https://portal.assessor.lacounty.gov/parceldetail/3105021087


Another Reader

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Re: Advice on getting rid of a lot of land parcel split 4 ways
« Reply #7 on: February 03, 2019, 08:28:00 PM »
It's a grant deed.  Who is/are the grantee(s)?  If there are four sets of grantees for the one parcel, then no one owns a separate piece of land. 

Another Reader

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Re: Advice on getting rid of a lot of land parcel split 4 ways
« Reply #8 on: February 03, 2019, 08:48:09 PM »
The satellite view shows no development in the area at all except for the airport and a couple of buildings scattered here and there.  The street is wide and paved with turn lanes almost back to the freeway.  It's obvious from Google Street View that someone thought this area would be developed and did at least some of the public improvements.  The development never happened.

The brokers you need to call are the local brokers up there, not in Orange County.  Look at the listing names on LoopNet for some of the smaller parcels.  Call a few of them and ask them about sales up there and the potential for development.  Your in-laws, assuming they want/need to sell, can then have a conversation with the other owners. 

If it's clear the property is worth a lot less than the Assessor says, file an informal request for review.  At least the owners will not have to pay taxes on a value that is not there.