Good Deal or Not? (I Originally Thought It Was) Half a House Edition


This house is located at 1241 Linden Place, NE:

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The flier says:

“Reduced & renovated 2 BR 2 BA Home features refinished original hardwood floors & exposed brick walls. The kitchen includes granite counters, stainless appliances, maple cabinets, recessed lighting, and open dining space. Master BR offers 2 walk-in closets & private balcony; New stackable Washer & Dryer; New Windows, Doors, AC, Heat and rear patio with storage shed complete this excellent offering.”

More info and a virtual tour found here.

I thought this was an interesting property because it is one of those half houses we’ve looked at before, plus it is located on a really quiet street near H Street, NE. So what do you think of the house itself? Does $449,000 sound reasonable?

31 Comment

  • I can’t tell how big this house is… it might be the perfect location for someone, but the thing that kills me the most is the astro-turf on the balcony. Seriously?!? Couldn’t get tile, or even cement (painted!)… Otherwise its cute… But, I wouldn’t buy it if only for the barred windows and doors on the second floor. That would scare me at night and I would become an insomniac.

  • Looks cute. Parking on that street is hard to come by. A parking space (which it looks like you could add, but the listing only provides for street parking) would make it a better deal. I don’t know whether it is a good deal or not. It probably is but I’m still pro-Upper NW if you want a house for under $500k. I wouldn’t buy it for that price, but that might just be my bias showing. If H St continues on its path to becoming the new Adams Morgan, it will be a good investment.

  • Don’t like at all and I think quite overpriced. Not sure of the comps but I still am not quite sure why anyone would choose to live in that area. Moreover, you should at least be able to get a beautifully renovated place sans the shag carpet and astroturf. Exposing some brick (too much in my opinion), doesn’t make it worth it.

  • I’m highly, highly skeptical of the listing’s claim that you can find 1500 sq. ft in this place. I think that’s probably high by at least 300-400 sq ft., based on the pictures.

    As to whether it’s a reasonable price, ask yourself whether you’d pay $900k — or even $800k — or even $700k — for the whole house, and I think you’ll have your answer: no. And if you’re still unconvinced, ask yourself whether $450k is reasonable for a place located in an area where they keep the window bars up after the renovation.

  • For that kind of money I want central air, period. I don’t understand the half-house concept – is it just the upstairs? Is is a condo? The finishes look pretty decent as well. It’s not the worst thing I’ve seen depending on the layout. I don’t know that part of DC very well so I say it’s *perhaps* worth it depending on the neighborhood and given no parking, whether there’s a metro close. I did go to an openhouse last weekend on Morgan near Chinatown for a small-ish renovated TH that is slightly pricier (I think 489 or maybe 499?) but it had central air and the design, esp the kitchen, was really cool, I had never even heard of the appliance brands but my bf was all impressed so I assume they were good. For half a mil I think you need something “extra” like that place, a rental and/or something to ooh and ahh over. Still, this one isn’t bad (tho agree on the astroturf–time to get rid of that).

  • that pricing is hilarious.

    i love the argonaut but this area is *sketchy*. almost as sketchy as columbia heights.

  • Calling this a half-house is misleading. It looks like it USED to be a half-house (one small flat downstairs through the front door on the right; another small flat upstairs through the front door on the left), but the wall are knocked down and there is only one house number. So $450,000 might not be as crazy for a whole house in a possibly booming area.

  • @eric, I agree the place is overpriced and small, and has some weird aspects (carpeting and mirrored closets in the master bedroom)….but I recently looked at a condo not far from this one (14th place NE) and there’s a ton less crime there than in CH. Comparing the 1500-ft radius (a couple blocks) surrounding that street versus 13th & Monroe NW, the CH location had TWICE as many reported crimes for each of the past 2 years.

    I’ll admit that perhaps people in CH are more likely to report crimes, and that crime along H St will probably go up as development continues, but for now it’s just not accurate to say it’s “almost as sketchy as Columbia Heights.”

  • If I lived there, I’d be dead within a week.

    Not from crime, but from eating Horace & Dickies 4-piece fish sandwiches, Philly Water Ice Co’s cheesesteaks, Taylor Gourmet’s fried risotto balls, and “Evil” Danny’s fried gizzards, wings, and mambo sauce every f**king day.

  • hee hee i was just kidding. the whole city’s sketchy.

  • Definitely overpriced, and the renovations look cheap (cheap hardwood floors). The area is good, though. This are is about to go through an explosion of development within the next two years.

  • I don’t think this is a half house. I think this house used to be split, but isn’t now. The first two interior pictures show that there are actually two front doors (and there’s matching stained glass over each), but that it’s all one property. I think that also accounts for the weird interior layout.

    Good deal. That’s an awesome street and close to everything.

  • @ eric makes the point of the year! “the whole city’s sketchy.”

    well, most of it is, anyway. enough so that crime statistic pissing matches aren’t worth anybody’s time.

    but to keep on topic, this place is a horrible rip-off and the lack of central air is emblematic of the half-assedness of the reno.

  • I looked at this house last year before the renovation. You can’t get a parking space in the back because access is largely blocked by a tree. As others have mentioned, it used to be two apartments and was partially renovated when sold to the current owner. Those renovations were pretty bad. The kitchen is super tiny and narrow, and the house is pretty dark. That said, I looked at a similar place on G St NE that was priced at $479K, so I guess it is in the range.

  • This one might be a little less nice and only has 1 bath, but it sold for almost $100k less:

    (by the way, that website is awesome for searching for recently sold properties)

  • Looks to me like it is the whole house, and I don’t think it as overpriced as some commentators suggest. Look at the comps. Most homes in the area are listed for over 500k. The only thing in this range in this area is a totally uninhabitable wreck.

    I don’t dig the astroturf. I don’t like the mirrored closets. I don’t like the concrete back yard–if you don’t want to tear out the tree to make a parking space, then plant some grass and some bushes. The kitchen looks pretty small, as does the second bedroom.

    BUT, I think it is ridiculous to try to compare Capitol Hill or H Street to Columbia Heights. The homes and the neighborhood appeal to different kinds of buyers. Homeowners in the Capitol Hill area LIKE the quirkiness of much older homes, even their narrowness, small rooms, and wierd layouts.

  • “Most homes in the area are listed for over 500k. The only thing in this range in this area is a totally uninhabitable wreck.”

    Hmm, that might be true for houses closer to Lincoln Park or Eastern Market but places closer to H St are priced quite a bit lower. Look at the place I linked to above that’s a block away from this place; I definitely wouldn’t call in uninhabitable and it sold for $355k. Also when looking at comps you should look at sold prices, not list.

  • Not impressed with the renovation, but the location is decent. Linden Pl is a nice leafy narrow block around the corner from H St.

    Commenters have mentioned any number of problematic choices around this house, but if it’s one unit, what gives with the double front door and double meter? It completely kills any potential curb appeal as a single home. It seems better suited to being a multiple unit rental.

  • OK, what gives with this place — two homes or one? Who’s seen it? I’ve lambasted its value as a half-house, but I retract that if it’s a full house that just suffers from dual-dooring and -metering and a house-long dividing firewall. It’s still weird, but value-wise it offends me much less for the whole thing.

  • When this property was sold last summer, the previous owner had it demised as two separate units. During the renovation, the current owner tore out the kitchen and a wall upstairs to make that master bedroom. Downstairs, they left the walls the same (except to expose the staircase in the front) and kept the galley kitchen. It is definitely one house now. I agree that, unless you went into the unit, you’d have no idea it was not two places.

    I spent 5 months house hunting earlier this year. Based on that experience, I’d say this is priced competitively with the rest of the H street area for a renovated house.

  • Even assuming its a full house, which I think it is, its overpriced by about $100k. There are some nice features but its really a really small house in a area that has a long ways to go. Just searching quickly for similarly priced houses in the area, I found a beautiful and much larger home for sale :

  • @ABCs

    That is a nice looking modern reno, but while Florida Avenue isn’t that far geographically, Linden is a much more desirable location.

  • agree with ABCs – there are far more desirable houses in the neighborhood even from a quick glance around redfin.

    it’s overpriced – no central air, only 2 bedrooms and only a “potentially booming area” – I really don’t think they’ll get over 400 for it. Maybe in 3-5 years, but not now.

  • Are we really still calling H St. a “potentially booming area?”

  • Calling this house $100K overpriced is one of the more laughable GDON responses ever posted. And that’s saying a lot, considering some people here devalue a home by $100K because they think the doorknobs are tacky.

    I bet this goes for close to the asking price.

  • Manga, the house on Morgan was mine and yes, it is way better than this. Now come buy it.

  • I looked at two homes in the H St area 4 years ago. It’s reputation was exactly the same… “potentially booming”. Okay- boom? Ya coming? I’m glad I didn’t buy in that area.

  • h street will “boom” when/if they finish the street renovations and put in a streetcar.

  • No parking, and there is a tree in back so there never will be parking…

  • Interestingly enough, my agent pulled this one as one of five ‘comps’ for a $270k(ish) home I’m putting a bid on off of H St. My house (fingers crossed, I find out tonight) is of comparable size, and is on one of the nicer side street. And while it needs work, not $200k worth of work! I bet I could make my place look like that w/ a $40k – $50k renovation.

    It might go for over $350k but only b/c some goof thinks he is getting a great deal knocking $100k off the price tag.

    As a side note, the baseboard electric heaters and astro turf porch are ghetto.

  • @Greeps — this house seems much larger than the one you’re selling on Morgan. Your house has sleek kitchen items, but needs a person with a streamlined sensibility —

    Too bad neither one has a front porch, but back deck and garden are great! Whoever bought a place on the alley behind me actually tore out the concrete parking pad and is growing many more interesting plants!

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