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How to own a piece of paradise at a fraction of the price

5050 Edna Rd San Luis Obispo-large-001-001-5050 Edna Rd-1499x1000-72dpi.jpg
Posted at 6:00 AM, Jul 05, 2022
and last updated 2022-07-05 13:51:36-04

We all know the cost of living is high on the Central Coast.

While home prices here may seem unattainable - we took a closer look at how some people are buying a second home to get slice of paradise, at a fraction of the price.

“Second home ownership is here to stay," said Whitney Curry, Pacaso Chief Marketing Officer. "We as a society by a pretty fundamental change of how we do work and how we do home. The ability to work from home is that more people than ever are desiring to have a primary location and a secondary home.”

Though prices are increasing, the desire to own a second or luxury home hasn’t faded - especially in sought after areas along the Central Coast.

Some buyers are now turning to fractional ownership, where six to eight people, create an LLC to purchase a home together.

That’s where the company Pacaso comes in - to facilitate the sale and manage the property.

“With Pacaso, we’ve been able to meet that demand and provide a solution that makes better use of our existing housing stock through co-ownership,” said Curry.

Cal Poly graduate turned real estate expert, Kate Hendrickson, calls this is a creative way to widen the pool of buyers looking for luxury real estate.

"It isn't a new concept. Pacaso has just taken that and put it on a platform. It streamlines the process - and they take it from acquisition and management of that property after that acquisition. So they’ve really just put it into a nice little box,” said Hendrickson.

“A lot of people think, oh I’d love to have a second home in Aspen, or in Tahoe, or even in the Edna Valley, but I don’t have $4 million to spend. This is really giving them the opportunity to enter into these markets and have an ownership stake in a beautiful luxury home,” Hendrickson said.

But not everyone’s on board.

Many opponents are comparing it to a timeshare of sorts in their neighborhood.

Brad Day started researching Pacaso when a home on his street was listed on its site - and helped initiate the effort called 'Stop Pacaso Now.'

“It’s really 'corporatizing' residential America. And before you know it, you’ve lost that sense of community, and that's a really, really hard thing to get back.”

He and his neighbors are now trying to stop the effort through organized protests, a Change.org petition and contacting local governments.

"if you are trying to raise a family - or you’re trying to have this sense of community - and you have a house or several houses that are just kind of like a rotating door of people coming in and out - that’s not a community, that’s just a glorified hotel,” said Day.

But Hendrickson offers another perspective, saying there is a place in the industry for this sort of business model.

Hendrickson said, “Pacasso tends to focus that are in high demand for second home housing - and the Central Coast is certainly one of those areas.”

“I think really where the platform can shine, is in areas like this where there’s no CC&Rs, there’s no restrictions, and there are no people that you’re impacting with this turnover,“ said Hendrickson.