Starting his real estate career at age 19, Richard Haynes today has a great deal of industry experience at 35. Other than his college years at USC, he has lived his entire life in Palos Verdes, Manhattan Beach and every Beach City in between. Richard is the owner of the boutique firm Manhattan Pacific Realty.
How many years have you been working in real estate?
“Growing up in the South Bay, it feels like I’ve always indirectly worked in real estate— learning the local geography, culture and lifestyle details that are important to homeowners. That said, 2006 was the official launch of my professional real estate career. So for nearly 16 years I have had the privilege of working in every aspect of the business. During college I worked in real estate advertising, PR and mortgage lending. After that I worked in a variety of industry niches such as full-time mortgage broker, income property investor, property manager, home flipper, real estate agent and broker, and spec home developer. My focus has always been on the South Bay including Manhattan Beach, Hermosa Beach, Redondo Beach and Palos Verdes, but we do dip our toe into Greater Los Angeles for our investors.”
What is the #1 way you help clients save money?
“There are a lot of ways we help clients save money. With my unique experience as an investor—I have facilitated the acquisition and disposition of 30 properties personally—I have experienced many of the pitfalls that can happen in a transaction. But the biggest way I save our clients’ money is by not being afraid to tell them ‘no.’ When my clients are looking at investing in a property and trusting me for my direction and opinion, I will clearly warn them when I believe a home is overpriced or could easily become a money pit. Often I feel the need to tell my client to offer less when they want to offer more, which in the end saves them a lot of money.”
Describe one of your favorite real estate projects.
“One of my favorite projects was the home we developed and sold on 9th Place in the Manhattan Beach Sand Section a few years ago. I had my hands on every aspect of the transaction: locating the land, raising capital, purchasing the property, designing and developing the home, and ultimately earning a solid return on the investment dollars. The whole process allowed me to express myself in many different varieties of the business and, more importantly, learn many aspects of real estate that I can share with my clients today.”
Is the South Bay real estate boom over?
“The answer is multifaceted, as it depends on how you define ‘boom.’ In the South Bay from 2012 to 2015, we experienced an awesome boom. But since then, yes, it has slowed, and the ‘boom’—or significant growth—has been over for about a year or two. The market has started to slow, and the increase in pricing has slowed or even declined in some areas. That doesn’t mean the market is going to crash, but buyers need to exercise patience and be very picky.”
If the boom is slowing, is real estate still a good investment?
“Well, that is a bit of a loaded question. Sometimes it is, and sometimes it isn’t. Timing in real estate is a huge factor. Real estate has had a great run as an investment over the last five to seven years, but presently in Greater L.A. it’s getting harder to make appropriate short-term or mid-term real estate returns for the risk taken these days. The easy money has already been made. If you have the wherewithal, investing over the very long term will still prove to be an excellent investment in my opinion. As a result, I have sold some of my investment properties and invested in the equities market, which is proving a better return in the short term.”
What are some of the steps you take to earn your clients’ trust?
“I take the time to underwrite property and its valuation for my clients. They are looking to me for expertise, and I am known for my pragmatic approach. My opinion is what they come to me for, and they trust that it is based on data and almost two decades of experience in many facets of real estate coupled with a lifetime of personal experience in the South Bay.”
What have been the biggest changes you’ve seen in the South Bay market?
“The emergence of Manhattan Beach as a luxury market is for sure the biggest change we’ve seen. Due to access from the ‘new’ 105 freeway, it became a major commuter thoroughfare. That and the advent of social media put the city on the map for many of Los Angeles’ elite. Manhattan Beach is not the sleepy beach surf town it was just 20 years ago; it is a destination. Population growth, upscale properties and high society moving in have affected not only the real estate prices but the landscape and beautification of the city itself. It’s been amazing to be a part of the growth and change.”
Share a bit about your job. what does it entail?
“In a nutshell, we are high-level real estate advisors to our clients. Through data and unmatched quality of service, we establish ourselves as experts in market knowledge and then flawlessly execute contracts and transactions. We’re like that old friend you go to for big life decisions such as family and career (only it’s real estate)!”