New Townhomes Proposed for Old Rink Site

by Nick Molnar on February 19, 2010

A South Bend land developer has announced his intention to build moderately priced townhomes downtown South Bend. David Matthews, developer of Ivy Quad, and formerly associated with Keenan Court, spoke before South Bend’s redevelopment commission about his proposal for the the roughly one acre piece of land north of Colfax Avenue at the river. This lot is commonly known as the “Rink site” because it was formerly the site of Rink Riverside Printing.

David Matthews stated his intent to build ten or eleven townhomes, eight with river views and two or three set off the river. He said they would be 1,680 square feet with 2-car garages and prices would start around $170,000. He said he has verbal commitments for two of the units, though at higher prices due to upgrades the purchasers selected. The lower priced of the pair is “under $200,000.”

The contract for the land is not final, but is for $10,000 and stipulates that the developer won’t request a tax abatement for the project. It also gives the developer 36 months to complete construction. When asked about this timeline, David Matthews said he intended to have completed townhomes on the site by this Fall. He said he will first build three: a furnished model and the two he has pre-sold.

The  terms are very different from those the last interested developer received. Place Builders, who planned to build eleven townhomes on the site priced from $400,000, was to pay $150,000 for the land. They never began construction and their $15,000 deposit was returned at the redevelopment commission’s last meeting on February 5th. Here is WNDU’s story about that project’s approval in September of 2008.

I’ll post updates on the Rink Site’s progress as it occurs. If you have questions about South Bend condos, put them in the comments, or contact me directly if you prefer.


New Downtown South Bend condos will be announced soon

by Nick Molnar on February 13, 2010

Watch for an announcement regarding a new condo project in South Bends’ downtown to hit the news stations in about a week. I’ll review the details here as soon as they solidify. But before we start talking about floorplans and finishes, let’s try an open discussion:

What will it take for downtown condos to succeed in South Bend?

  • Do they need a certain location – for example on the river or on Michigan Avenue?
  • Will it require a specific feature: an attached garage, a balcony with a view, common greenspace, or something else?
  • Should they be newly built, or in a rehabbed historic building?
  • Will they need to be ultra luxury or surprisingly affordable?
  • What would it take to get you to buy one, or to recommend one to a client or friend?
  • Is there anything else you would suggest or say to the developer, if he is reading the comments?


Sunny Options on the south side of South Bend

by Nick Molnar on February 6, 2010

It’s sunny and clear in South Bend today, beautiful really. I went for a run for the first time in ages.

At we often work with people moving to the area who want to be near Notre Dame. That is on the north side of the city, so they select homes there, or in nearby Granger.

But, looking around as I gasped for breath, I was reminded why I’m partial to the south side of South Bend. I brought a camera and snapped its shutter a few times. These images are from Ridgedale, a neighborhood of older homes with one or two new ones and Erskine Manor, a neighborhood of newer homes with one or two older ones.

If I were in better shape, I’d have continued to Topsfield and Deer Run, or even Stonehedge and New Road.

If you are considering a move to the South Bend area, I’d encourage you to keep an open mind and look at all your options. Unless you want to be walking distance to a specific spot, the difference between getting in a car and driving one mile or driving five miles is trivial. South Bend traffic isn’t bad.

If you look a bit off the “beaten path,” you might find options that surprise you.

Photo from South Bend's Ridgedale neighborhood


South Bend Real Estate Sales Report: January 2010

by Nick Molnar on February 4, 2010

The South Bend Area MLS records for January 2010 show that

  • 121 residential properties sold
  • 201 residential properties went under contract
  • 491 residential properties were listed for sale

The 121 sales added up to $9.6 million in volume. That is the lowest monthly sales volume going back as far as the South Bend MLS provides electronic records, mid 2001. It is also the first time the sales volume has fallen below $10 million.

Sales Prices

The most expensive sale was 51572 Norwich, which sold for $400,000. It last sold in 2001 for $375,000.

Two properties sold for $3,000, the lowest price. One of those, 234 Calvert sold for $5,000 in 2008 and for $18,000 in 2003

There were 14 sales under $10,000
There were 18 sales over $150,000

Here are all 121 sales prices, represented visually on a scatter graph


Cash accounted for more than half of all sales.  FHA and conventional loans each accounted for about 20% of the sales. VA loans and other types of financing remain uncommon here.

Notre Dame Condos

No condo or townhouse near Notre Dame sold through the MLS in January.  Several properties in neighborhoods like Mishawaka’s The Forest and South Bend’s Somers Square sold, but it was a slow month for complexes near Notre Dame. January is commonly slow for Notre Dame homes. In January 2009, there were two such sales. In January 2008, there were four.

New Construction

I found MLS data for the January sale of two newly built homes.
A Weiss built home in South Bend’s Royal Oak Estates, which sold for $211,225.
A Jeff Moser built home in Granger’s Stoneybrooke Shores, which sold for $328,400

Have Questions? Need Help?

While this is the most detailed and most current information you’ll find on real estate sales in the South Bend Area, there are significant details we can’t share here. If you need to better understand the market to make smart decisions, or need help buying or selling property call or e-mail. We’d be pleased to hear from you.


More Model Unit News from South Bend and Mishawaka

by Nick Molnar on January 27, 2010

Eddy Commons model is nearly ready, but there is news about the model units at other condo and townhome developments in South Bend and Mishawaka Area. Here is a quick roundup:

Irish Crossings

The model unit at Irish Crossings is available for sale. It’s waterfront, furnished, and comes with many upgrades. Asking price is reportedly $455,000, lower than the base price plus that of the included upgrades and furniture.

Riverwalk Townhomes

The model unit at Riverwalk Townhomes, listed for sale at $349,900, is now also available for lease.

Stonebridge Villas

The builders of the Stonebridge Villas are now offering detached villas, a departure from their original plan with four units per building. The detached villas start in the mid $200s and peak above $300,000 for the largest model with upgrades.