Good Deal or Not? “Fully renovated” edition (Reader Request)

This home is located at 1118 Florida Ave, NE:

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The flier says:

“Two units zoned residential/commercial in a sought after rental area. Fully renovated in 2007, each unit has Stainless/Granite kitchen, gas appliances, Jacuzzi, exposed brick, rear deck, parking for 4 cars. Located in the H Street/Atlas District, a short commute to Metro, Downtown, Capitol Hill, and easy access to Gallaudet University, shopping and eating establishments.”

You can find more info here and photos here.

The reader writes:

“Hey, I saw this property and its neighbor pop up a few weeks ago and can’t figure out why they’re so cheap. Perhaps it’s the stigma attached to the Trinidad neighborhood, but I’d be interested to see whether people thought this was a GDON or not. The second link is the property right next door and has probably been renovated by the same person.”

That is bizarre. This 4 bed/2.5 bath is going for $319,000. This is truly bizarre. In June 2006 it sold for $615,000. Does the $319,000 sound realistic or will it get bid up much higher? The house next door that the reader mentions went under contract for $349,000.

25 Comment

  • Short Sale. Not a real price.

  • The bizarre part, IMO, is that it ever sold for $615k. It’ll probably go for higher than $319k but I think the price will proably be closer to 300 than to 600.

  • It’s a short sale. Those are always priced low so they will get bid up and sell fast.

  • “sought after” is a stretch. It’s loud, there’s a lot of rundown houses and businesses on the block. The liquor store on the corner has the vestiges of the old DC -bullet proof glass everywhere. You’ll be overrun with church-goers on Sundays.

    it’s like living almost anywhere on Florida Ave, without the convenience of having anything useful close by.

    • On the plus side, there’s a damn fine tobacco shop a few doors down.

    • Like living almost anywhere on Florida Ave? I think the scene over at Florida Ave and Connecticut is a bit different. That is a sweeping generalization, my friend.

      • I think most people would understand that statement to mean east of where Florida comes off of U at 9th NW. I’m not sure living by all the fauxganic and fake-good places by FL and CT (Nora, Veritas, Thaiphoon, etc…) would qualify as being near anything useful either, but at least you have Rite Aid rather than CVS. And Leather World.

        • “fauxganic”? what does that mean?

          • Places that trade on being organic/local/green/seasonal/whatever but are clearly only doing it to the extent that it gets them business or allows them to pad their prices. Nora, Sequoia, Founding Farmers, and Jamie Leeds’ places all qualify.

      • Your right, Florida and Connecticut isn’t a mess.

  • Yeah, a house on my block was listed for something like $200k… it sold within a few days for over $500k. The developers will run that $319k right up, then cut it up into a couple of condos.

  • I looked at this place and it is huge. The bank has offers in the $400,000 range already…it will probably sell for around that.

  • @photodork is right. a short sale price means absolutely nothing. you could say that it costs $100k, but unless the bank accepts it, it’s meaningless.

    no matter what you think about the surrounding neighborhood, i think living directly on FL ave is part of what makes this unappealing. high traffic road = plenty of noise, don’t plan on having kids and let them play out front. it will command less than a similar property on a quieter sidestreet.

  • I was in this neighborhood on Monday, and I think it’s getting nicer very rapidly. Nice surprise. As for kids, there’s always the back yard, and I think there are two good charter schools within walking distance.

  • There are some really cool looking houses on that block from the outside at least. Several different styles of houses too, Some in bad shape, others look really nice. And these houses also have some really deep yards and a few carriage houses/ garages. Ragged Dog is right though it is loud on that street, tons of commuter traffic during rush hours.

  • that area is dangerous. before you buy there try and buy some crack just to see what i’m talking about.

  • It is dangerous if you are buying or selling drugs. Other than that you just need to use common sense and it’s no worse than most places in the city.

  • Hey everyone, a friend of mine emailed me this blog posting. I’m the person who will soon be a first-time homeowner in the place next door to this one. It’s bee interesting reading the comments on the blog, because in both the pro and con arguments, I see many elements of my own thought process.

    As a longtime renter, I’ve put a lot of thought into buying a place in DC, and had been looking (on and off) for about 18 months. I explored many neighborhoods, and types of homes, before settling on the Atlas District.

    In every home, there are positives and negatives. Yes, H Street and Trinidad are rapidly becoming nicer neighborhoods. But on the other hand, Florida Avenue is a busy street, with speeding cars blaring rap music and the occasional liquor store. I don’t yet have a wife or children, but when those materialize, the neighborhood may give me pause.

    However, I chose to buy where I did because I am confident that overall, the neighborhood is changing fast, and — from my perspective — for the better. I like the masonry of the nearby townhomes. I like the history — the fact that H Street was a once-and-future thriving commercial corridor; the fact that Florida Avenue was originally named Boundary Road, because it was the northern border of Pierre L’Enfant’s original map of Washington, DC, back in 1790. And I simply like the aesthetics of the area.

    For anyone beginning this process, or deliberating among different neighborhoods, I suggest taking a look at Trinidad. You can get more for your money than in other parts of the city; the proximity to H Street and the new cable cars means that the feeling of disconnect from the rest of the city will gradually ease; and Gallaudet University, along with the proposed Florida Market redevelopment, offer natural centerpieces for the neighborhood.

    One question for everyone: has anyone had experience with DC schools including magnet and charter school? The only thing I worry about with becoming a DC resident is that public schools will not offer a good education for my hypothetical future children.

    Finaly, thanks for reading, and I am looking forward to being your new neighbor!

    • “I like places that were once boundaries but have since expanded”

      I mean, what kind of comment is that? Why is that something to like? How can that possibly make you feel any better about anything and why do you ever think about it?

      I love the fact that the Mississippi River was once the western boundary of the United States. I’m going to go buy a house there. Gratifying.


      I’m not saying the house and/or location are bad or good, but simply pointing out that the rationale is just awful.

      • Dolph Strike,

        Nope. You are paraphrasing me incorrectly.

        But in any case — that wasn’t really part of my rationale for buying. Rather it was an aspect of the neighborhood I liked.


  • How are the DC public schools in this area? Any recommended charter or magnet elementary schools nearby?

  • I live in Trinidad and I don’t send my daughter to a public school in the area. We entered the lottery and she attends a Thomson elementary downtown an IB school. Alot of people in the area like Two Rivers charter school on Florida. My neighbor has her son in the Capital Hill public schools, another neighbors son attends Yu Ying China immersion charter school in Brookland. By the time you have kids things may have changed enough that the local (walking distance) schools will be something you might want for your kids. Welcome to the neighborhood! I’ve been there 10 yrs. now.

  • Award: the danger comes from gun fights and crazed fools hooped up on dippers, not from buying drugs. when you are buying drugs you are a customer and treated as such. look up the number of shootings in that area, that’s the tip of the iceberg. will it get better? Sure, but for now it is dangerous if you walk in there with no clue like so many newbies do.

  • Kromeklia, thanks very much! I did not know about the Thomson School. The IB and Mandarin are big draws. Exciting.

    See you around the neighborhood!

Comments are closed.