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Cornell Real Estate Review

Article Title

Case Study in Residential Development: Golden Hills

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© Cornell University. Reprinted with permission. All rights reserved.

Abstract

The Golden Hills Case Study is focused around the financial analysis and evaluation of two undeveloped tracts within a master-planned community in the Los Angeles region. The owner of the two parcels, Reality Development, has received an offer from a competitor to buy the land. In the role of Marc Baker, the protagonist of the case study, the task is to evaluate the net present value of the land if Reality were to develop it and compare the results again the offered price. As the market had turned after the burst of the internet bubble and demand for smaller unit had increased, the approved plans and product mix - that would represent a continuation of the existing surrounding - appeared to be not the most favorable solution as it has a concentration of three-bedroom houses. For this reason an alternative product mix with increased density and a faster overall absorption was developed. But no only the start of the construction would be delayed as the new design would maybe also face resistance from the existing community. A decision is to be made on how to proceed, assessing both the quantitative as well as relevant qualitative aspects.