Good Deal or Not? “extra large 1 BR (formely 2 BD)” edition

This condo is located at 1657 31st St, NW:

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The flier says:

“elegant floor plan, extra large 1 BR (formely 2 BD) on the sunny front side of the building. Located across the street from historic Tudor Place and 1/2 block from Montrose Park and Dumbarton Oaks. sep. dining room w/ gas fireplace. light filed living room and solarium. Storage. Beautiful view on rear gardens.”

You can find more info here and a virtual tour here.

Normally we look at multimillion dollar homes in Georgetown but it was pretty cool to get a (virtual) look inside this great old building. What’d you think of the tour?

This 1 bed (formerly 2 bed) is going for $575,000 ($1,022.80 monthly condo fee.)

34 Comment

  • That is quiiiite a condo fee. And for that, you still get to carry your dirty laundry to the basement? No thanks.

    • I believe it’s a co-op, not a condo, and they just redid their windows, stucco and brick. I looked at it and that unit still owes it’s share of the blanket mortgage, hence the large monthly fee. The owner is planning on paying this off reducing the monthly by $378. Water and heat are included, there’s almost always a place on the street to park, there’s a real estate tax deduction (not on condos I think), and knocking out three loads of laundry, wet to dry, in an hour ten? I like that!

  • Those grounds must be costly to maintain. And I bet you can’t have a party/cookout in those common lawns. Imagine the conflicts if dogs were allowed (they aren’t) as some residents would use the common lawns as bathrooms for their dogs.

  • The comps might support this, but that’s nuts. It’s a nice building, sure, but that kitchen is a joke and it’s still a one bedroom apartment. You’re looking at a $3300 per month mortgage + $1000 condo fee.

  • I love Georgetown, but seriously? Almost 600k for a place with no w/d, no parking, no metro, and a kitchen that hasn’t been renovated since the 1960s? If I’m paying that kind of money for a place I want to be comfortable, and that isn’t comfortable.

  • Wow! Just goes to show how much people are willing to blow just to avoid riff raff like me!

  • horrible deal. why would anyone choose this over a row home in a marginal neighborhood or a 2br condo in an equally safe neighborhood? laundry in the basement?! crappy range? no closet space?? inconvenient to public transportation? no thank you.

    • Judging by the age of the building, this probably was built as a 1 bedroom with a sun-room, changed to 2 bedrooms, and then back again. I agree that a 2 bedroom condo would be preferable (if available at that price), but the question “why would anyone choose this over a row home in a marginal neighborhood” answers itself. Not everyone wants to sacrifice personal safety to have new construction, which isn’t always better, or a hastily renovated and flipped home. There’s no question that the kitchen and bathroom are dated and that the condo fees are high, but a lot of buildings in DC feature $750 and higher condo fees. The lack of a 24-hour front desk and parking are the biggest problem for me when you’re paying that kind of money each month.

      • Yep. A lot of people (particularly people with money) don’t want to take care of a property, or are incapable of doing so (either from physical limitations or garden variety cluelessness).

  • And no central air. Saw a window unit in one of the pictures. Not sure what you’re really paying for here…

  • Horrible deal. If I’m paying well over $3K a month for a 1 bedroom space, it better be newly and nicely renovated, have central heat/AC, have a covered parking space, and have a washer and dryer in the unit. This has none of those things.

  • At over $4k/month + $150k down payment, this is way more costly than renting a roughly comparable unit in Georgetown. I think whoever buys this is so price insensitive, that the sheer unwiseness of this purchase as a RE investment doesn’t affect them. There’s no way they come out ahead when you run the buy vs. rent numbers. I think it needs $75k – $100k price drop to make sense in that way.

    Also — who buys this? You have to be high income and childless, which generally means you want to live in a more hip neighborhood.

    • Older to elderly rich people who would never live anywhere in DC except somewhere in Georgetown. No one younger would accept the deficiencies of this place.

    • Maybe an extremely status-conscious retiree with a serious nostalgia for old, cramped kitchens? I’ve been trying to figure out the target market for a unit like this and that’s all I can come up with.

      Anybody who can drop this kind of cash on such an incredibly poor investment (not to mention uncomfortable living space) could get so much more for the money. I guess I’m just not Georgetown’s target demographic.

    • Yeah I’m thinking wealthy empty-nesters who want to sell their house in McLean to move into the city. But it’s still not a good value.

  • Bear

    I feel like I’m missing something here. This seems ridiculous, even for Georgetown.

  • This unit is going to appeal to an older buyer who probably does not desire the bells and whistles of stainless steel appliances, vessel sinks, etc. The separate dining room and the various antique finishes will be appealing to that person. So I think it’s a bit high for my personal taste but I suspect it will sell for close to asking.

    • Yeah, I really like the style of it actually… appeals to me more than the new construction condos around the city. Maybe I really am 70 yrs old at heart… but I would not want to be carrying my laundry to the basement at that age….

  • Taking a 2 br and removing one of them in a apt is like ripping the hood ornament off your Bentley. Immediate devaluation and can’t understand why someone would do that.

    Also, considering this place is a COOP rather than a Condo, the high price is even more astounding as condominium units are always worth more than a coop.

    I wouldn’t pay it, but you’ll have some 45+ single person with more money than brains jump at it because they just “have” to live in GT.

  • Yes, I really want to be on the “sunny front side of the building” with no central air conditioning. The place must be an absolute furnace by the evening unless you leave the window units running all day. But at least you’ll get plenty of exercise if you take the non-air-conditioned stairs to that non-air-conditioned laundry room when you realize you didn’t bring enough quarters for the dryer, which by the way throws off no heat at all. The money you save on a gym membership you can put toward the monthly common fees or an intravenous hookup at Sibley Hospital after you collapse from heat exhaustion.

  • Unbelievable..

  • I think people who comment here have no clue of what the building is really like. I live there and it is truly fabulous. A lot of young families are part of a cosmopolitan group of owners. The grounds are open to all and we have many great times on the lawn. People, it is OK to go down to the basement to do the laundry. It is actually fun to meet others and chat while folding laundry.

  • Does the art convey? Because a Goya and a Fragonard, among others, would make the price pretty reasonable.

  • Wow what a horrible deal… “former” 2 bedroom condo?

    The condo fee alone is enough of a turn-off. Geez

  • The only buyer I can imagine at this price is perhaps the owner of a next-door unit, to combine two units into a larger one. They’d be the only one who’d be willing to pay this kind of premium.

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