After selling new  homes in suburbs such as Palmdale, sale rep Jim Mahboubian this week began the task of selling 36 condos in Echo Park near the center of Los Angeles. While the first model home for the 36 on Echo project won’t be finished until next month,  that has not stopped Mahboubian, who works for developer D.R. Horton, from setting up an Echo Park “Sales Center,”  which in this case consists of a green canopy – decorated with red and blue balloons – that was plopped at an entrance to the dusty construction site. Mahboubian concedes he has not had much time to prepare; even the “Sales Center” sign is a leftover from a Palmdale subdivision.  But Mahboubian, who was handing out brochures from the trunk of his car earlier today, said he has kept busy answering questions from potential buyers and  neighbors, some of whom expressed concern about street parking becoming even harder to find near Echo Park and Delta avenues.

“They are really upset,” Mahboubian said.  But he said he has told neighbors to “relax,” explaining that each unit comes with a two-car garage.

Sales have not officially begun for the three-level condos, which are expected to be priced from the mid $400,000 to the mid $500,000 range. But Mahboubian was taking names for an interest list – which had grown to about 80 people –  and had given an informal tour of the site to potential buyers. At least two had gone to the trouble of getting pre-qualified for a home loan, Mahboubian said.  The first homes are expected to be finished in August.

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