Good Deal or Not? “3 Bedroom & 2.5 Bath condo” edition

This condo is located at 1118 Monroe St, NW:

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The flier says:

“Welcome to this amazing 2 Level – 3 Bedroom & 2.5 Bath condo in the heart of Columbia Heights! This gorgeous 1,550sf home offers Gourmet Kitchen, Wood Floors, lots of closet space, Opt. gas fireplace, Deck, W/ D & parking for 2-3 Cars! Steps to Target, Restaurants, Metro & Shops!”

You can find more info here and photos here.

$579,900 ($150 monthly condo fee) sound right for this 3 bed/2.5 bath?

51 Comment

  • Too much yellow!

  • is no one a fan of a separate kitchen? everyone wants to cook in the middle of the floor? walls get no respect

    • Agreed! I detest “open concept” and all those wankers on HGTV talking about all the “entertaining” they do and how they can cook and talk to their guests at the same time. I like my kitchen to myself, with walls and a swinging door. Ole skool.

      Sadly, I live in an open concept floor plan. Do you have a separate kitchen? Am I about to envy you?

      • I have a separate kitchen. ๐Ÿ™‚

      • Yes, I agree with you calling out all the wanna-be trendy people all yearning to cook in their living room but think there is a happy medium as opposed to living in a kitchen completely walled off from the the rest of the house, with no windows, and a doggie door ๐Ÿ™‚ …oo-lala look at those granite counter tops, never seen that in a renovation!

        • My kitchen reno was complete crap– bottom of the line Home Depot everything– but at least the floorplan is ideal. Kitchen and dining room are separated by a substantial island, and the dining room has pocket doors to the living room. It’s ain’t ooh-la-la, but it could be, someday, when I find $20k in the couch cushions!

      • yes girl! that was one of the selling points… love a swing door! and if i ever get high post, the server can come out and place plates while i entertain my guests… it’s a good thing.

    • Plus, where the hell do you put the china cabinet and the art? And the sideboard? Totally agree, all ye separate kitchen whores (just had to say it after yesterday’s discussion.)

    • I much prefer a separate kitchen. Why if you are having a “fancy” dinner party do you really want to be staring at the kitchen? Just don’t get it.

  • The above ground level looks lovely, but–REALLY? Someone might pay $579K for half a house, with half of that half being a basement?

    Just wild

  • Based on location and size of bedrooms, good deal. Includes parking — even better deal.

    Only downside (not to me, but presumably to some) is that one of the bedrooms is off the kitchen. This GDoN is essentially a nice 1 bedroom condo, with two extra bedrooms stacked on top. I like that layout. You get 3 large bedrooms as a result.

  • The two “extra” bed rooms are on the bottom (basement). And it is weird that the “master” is right off of the kitchen. That is really expensive for a condo where someone presumably lives above you. It might be priced right based on the square footage and location, but I think it is priced high for the wanky layout and condo aspect.

  • Stop splitting up houses. Damn it makes me peeved, and I don’t know a single person of many that I know that have bought one of these split house condos that didn’t regret it.

    • DC has a housing shortage, and it’s only going to get worse each year for the next couple decades. Should we reserve all the 4 level homes for people with extremely high incomes? I don’t think so. If you want more affordable housing, you have to be OK with dividing giant homes — which you will most likely never even set foot inside anyway.

      • What housing shortage?

        • One indicator you can look at is the vacancy rate, which is very low — that’s one reason rents are shooting up so quickly, even in less popular neighborhoods.

          DC’s population is increasing for the first time in generations. Everything that is happening in DC right now — all the development and revitalization that’s featured on this blog and in other outlets — is going to increase the rate of migration and gentrification over time. As DC gets nicer, more people will want to live there. Unless more homes are built, the shortage will become more pronounced.

          • Maybe I’m wrong here, but I think there’s a different between a rental vacancy rate and a buying vacancy rate. More people are renting cause they can’t afford / get approved for loans. I’m not sure there’s a correlation there.

          • All of the rental units that people are living in are owned by someone, right…? We’re not seeing a flood of government owned housing being occupied…

      • except for the fact that the asking price of one floor of that home is equivalent to the price of some rowhouses… it’s insane. there is no way i’d pay close to half a mil for a floor in a house. i just don’t get it.

      • agreed. If this whole house was for sale it would cost double. I don’t know about you but I’m not in the market for a $1M+ house.

  • Yes. This is weird. You can surely get a whole house close to the metro in close to as good a condition for around this price – maybe low sixes. Why would you buy half the house and pay someone $150 bucks a month for nothing?

    • I don’t think you could get a whole house close to Columbia Heights Metro in this condition for this price. (Other Metro stations, sure.)

      Even if the whole thing is above-grade, the basement portions look dark (probably because of the porch, and because the front of the house faces north).

    • Agreed. We live 2 blocks away in a full rowhouse with comparable square footage–above grade. With another ~800 sq feet of finished basement. Looks like we bought our place around the same time (summer 2006) for $10k less and I am confident that we got the better deal.

  • I think it’s a good deal if it were for the whole house, but definitely not a house called a condo. That’s just dumb.

  • You can go to Petworth and buy a whole house, then add $100K improvements into it and still come out @ 350-450K.

    Course, you have to pick your block in Petworth.

  • I went to the open house and live down the road, so I hope they get full price. But I thought all of the rooms felt really small.
    I think this place will appeal to someone who wants everything new & done. But I agree if someone was willing to invest some money into a remodel, they could get a single-family home for the same price.
    But the antiques in the house are exquisite.

  • Even if it’s all technically above-grade, you gotta deduct points for the lower level and how dark it looks from the photos.

    Also, it looks like just today they lowered the price to $549.

  • no way jose!

  • I will never understand why people pave over the entire back yard for parking. Cars already take up the roads – so you have to give up the yard too? You’re going to pay half a million for half a house, and no yard?

    • it’s nice to have a parking spot.

      • Yeah, that’s what I don’t get. It seems far nicer to have a yard than a parking spot. Cars seem like such a burden. (can you tell I don’t have one?)

        • Cool story.

          Meanwhile, in the rest of the world, we have cars.

        • i agree. they are a burden. but my life is such that i utilize a car for work, live in an area that is increasingly hard to park on the street, and hate lawns. my spot serves a dual purpose as patio and parking spot for when my car is loaded up with work related stuff or i can’t find a spot on the street.

          it’s great that you don’t have one, but all of our lives are different.

      • Parking for 3 cars, for each condo = six parking spaces. Coulda done 1 for each condo, and still had a yard.

  • What about the noise factor in these house conversions? You can sometimes hear your neighbors in apartment buildings so I can only imagine what it’s like to live in a converted house. Does anyone live in or know somebody who lives in one?

    • I lived in a rowhouse that was turned into three separate apartments. I could actually hear the upstairs neighbor’s cell phone vibrating…or hear them drop change. And good god did they drop shit all the time.

  • Mostly a nice looking condo, though I’d re-paint that orange.

    When did the trend of putting that concrete colored tile in showers start? Some friends just did it on a renovation of their house and it (and this one) look very institutional to me. We could call it ‘Park Service Shower Grey’ Slogan: “Revisit the showers of Acadia National Park” or some such…

  • Let’s not turn this into a pissing match over neighborhoods. CH and Petworth are pretty darned close in terms of character. I happen to like my part of Petworth more than most parts of CH. And I don’t say that because I bought a house there and have a stake in the place…..we looked at a lot of neighborhoods in the District and could have bought a nice house in a nice part of Capitol Hill, for example, but Petworth won out for a number of reasons.

  • No one should ever buy a condo in a two-unit building. You are beholden to the other owner and hope that he pays his condo fees. If not, you have to sue and that takes resources and time. If you own the upper level and the roof leaks, it’s the responsibility of the condo association to fix, but the other owner could refuse, and then you’re screwed. Two unit condos are not eligible for FHA financing, so your potential pool of buyers is diminished because most people need FHA loans, which allow buyers to put 3 percent down. Buying half a house is simply not worth it. And it appears to me that part of this house is in the basement. Really? A basement and a first level for nearly $600,000. Besides the headache of ownership in a two-unit condo, more than half a million for half a house (no matter the neighborhood) is not a good deal at all.

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