A flagstone-fronted house at dusk with interior lights casting a golden glow. In front of the house is a drought-resistant landscaping with a large tree as well as hedges and purple flowers.
This Alamitos Heights house, listed at $1.75 million, is the priciest two-bedroom home on the market. Movoto photo.

If you’re in the market for a home, most likely it’s a three-bedroom, two-bath house you’re looking for. Even if it’s just you and a partner, the 3+2 configuration is the ideal setup. You’ve got at least one bedroom for the two of you—maybe two bedrooms; I don’t know the intricacies of your relationship with your partner, or even what I mean by “partner.” If you’re sharing a bedroom, you’ve got a couple of more to turn into a guest room, an office, a studio, a place to keep your cats, or whatever.

And if you have a family, the rooms are for the kids.

The 3+2 is by far the most popular housing unit in existence (although it can also be 3+1.5 or 1.75; any number greater than 1 will be fine). A Census Bureau study of the residential building industry in 2018 showed that of the 617,000 homes sold that year, 45% were three-bedroom.

But today we’re looking at two-bedroom homes, which are not without merit in certain demographics and for some preferences. Their chief attraction, of course, is their price. The median sold price for two-bedroom homes in Long Beach in March was $625,000; for three-bedroom houses the median was $900,000, which would suggest that an extra room is worth $275,000.

And while two-bedroom homes are more difficult to sell, there is a market for them, particularly at both ends of the pool of buyers: First-timers who simply can’t afford the cost of a three-bedroom house and are looking to get into the market, perhaps with hopes of later selling at enough of a profit to enable them to move up in house size; and aging Baby Boomers, some 65 million of them, lining up on the ridgeline like Apaches in an old Western movie, ready to swoop in and downsize to cozy two-bedrooms and live their lives out traveling and otherwise having a high time with the massive profits made from selling their larger homes.

While the current inventory of two-bedroom homes listed at below $750,000 is fairly ample—there are about a dozen—let’s take a look at a few anomalies currently for sale: million-dollar two-bedroom homes.

These are homes that hit the seven-figure park by merit of the most important word in Realtorese: location. And even by being situated in a desirable spot, a million-dollar two-bedroom place is a rarity because most homes that would’ve qualified have long since been either torn down in favor of something more spacious, or have had some major addition work to beef the place up and increase its value. That’s why you’d need some serious good luck to find a cozy two-bedroom on Naples Island.

Oh, wait, here’s one now.

A white picket fence surrounds a Spanish style home with red tile roof. A palm tree is at the right of the house and smaller bushes and other foliage is on the left and along the front.
A $1.2 million two-bedroom home on Campo Walk in Naples. Movoto photo.

An intact original 1928 Spanish-style 1,080-square-foot home at 5642 Campo Walk in Naples. It’s got some beautiful touches inside, including woodwork trim and hardwood floors throughout, an upgraded kitchen and a nice flagstone patio out back.

The house features a barrel ceiling in the living room, a sort of funky freestanding electric fireplace and a formal dining room, with decorative arches between rooms. A small area with built-in shelves and cabinets can serve as an office, while the two bedrooms are more spacious than you’ll find in most two-bedroom houses. The formal dining room has a swinging door to the kitchen which has good appliances and a long butcher block counter.

The front is surrounded by a traditional white picket fence, adding a ton of charm to this little place that’s a short stroll to the canals of Naples. Buy it and live in it before it gets obliterated.

It’s listed by Marie Picarelli at $1.2 million.

A light brown stucco Spanish style house with red tile roof and drought resistant flowers, a large tree and other plants in the front yard. A blue and white canvas awning shades on t=of the front windows,
This Cal Heights home on Olive Avenue is on the market at $1.05 million. Movoto photo.

Next up is a completely renovated Spanish Colonial Revival home at 3610 Olive Ave. in California Heights. At 1,152 square feet, it’s as spacious as many three-bedroom homes, allowing for bigger bedrooms and living areas. The living room has high vaulted ceilings and an electric fireplace and the kitchen is also large with top appliances, custom cabinetry and a center island with seating.

The two bedrooms each have walk-in closets with restored built-ins. The backyard is on the small side, but it includes a nice patio for entertaining small groups.

The front yard is low maintenance with drought-resistant landscaping and a drip water system.

Improvements to the home include refurbished original hardwood flooring throughout along with new electrical and plumbing.

The 1925 home is offered by Realtor Stephanie Destatte at $1.049 million.

A flagstone-fronted house at dusk with interior lights casting a golden glow. In front of the house is a drought-resistant landscaping with a large tree as well as hedges and purple flowers.
This large two-bedroom home in Alamitos Heights on the Rec Park Golf Course is listed at $1.75 million. Movoto photo.

For our last pricey two-bedroom, we’re gonna need an asterisk or two. For one, it’s a little more on the luxe side with two bathrooms, while a two-bedroom house normally has one. And a bigger asterisk is needed for the fact that the house originally had three bedrooms, but one was knocked out to make space for a large family room. We’re assured by the listing that it can be reconverted to a three-bed house. That all explains the mammoth size of the home. At 1,840 square feet , you could practically stuff a normal two-bedroom house in the laundry room. The home, listed by Joan Marshall at $1.75 million, is in Alamitos Heights at 622 Santiago Ave. across the street from Recreation Park Golf Course.

You get views of the course from almost everywhere in the house—the living room, dining room, family room and kitchen.

A brightly lit white living room with hardwood floors and a light brown rug. A maple coffee table is on front of a white couch dark throw pillows facing a flagstone fireplace. At left is a wall of black-framed floor-to-ceiling windows through which you can see trees and the golf course across the street.
Most of the rooms have views of the golf course. Movoto photo.

The curb appeal is outstanding, with an expertly landscaped front yard featuring drought-resistant plants, and the backyard is large, thanks to the oversized and elevated lot. The back is equipped with a barbecue area with granite counters, refrigerator and two built-in bistro tables.

The updated kitchen has maple cabinets, a six-burner stove and dual ovens. The bedrooms are large, with the primary having access to the back patio.

The place has hardwood or porcelain tile throughout and a fireplace to add a little coziness to the place. For a two-bedroom, it’s a lot of house, and it demonstrates, even with its asterisks, that a two-bedroom house isn’t always small—or inexpensive. 

Tim Grobaty is a columnist and the Opinions Editor for the Long Beach Post. You can reach him at 562-714-2116, email [email protected], @grobaty on Twitter and Grobaty on Facebook.