Good Deal or Not? “stunningly modern inside” edition

This home is located at 1461 Florida Ave, NW:

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The flier says:

“Historic exterior stunningly modern inside, top-to-bottom renovation of a 3 level rowhouse with addition and sep. 925 sq ft rental unit (will rent for over $2K a month. ) Top two floors feature 2 Master Bd, 2.5 Ba and grand entertainment space. Beautiful Hwd floors, skylights, floating stairs case, walk-out patio and sleek kitchen with huge stone-top island. Steps to U St Metro and park.”

You can find more info here and photos here.

This 3 bed/3.5 bath is going for $899,777.

Ed. Note: Last week’s GDoN Revisted 1412 Florida Ave NW which sold for $805,000.

44 Comment

  • I usually hate modern homes but this one is quite nicely done.

    • Yeah, I read the description and thought I would hate it. While it’s definitely not my style, it’s not terrible. I think it’s because the bones of the house have lines that complement the contemporary stuff.

      I’m confused about the kitchen in the rental unit. Is it a full kitchen? All I see is a sink and maybe a microwave.

  • I really like it. Nice and modern, just my style.

    The one question I would need to know is if that rental unit has its own entrance. I don’t see one but I could be wrong.

    If there is a separate entrance, I think GD.

    • Yep – says there are two separate entrances to the basement apt.

      Basement Information

      * Has Basement
      * Area (Finished): 950
      * Walkout Level
      * Front Entrance
      * Rear Entrance

    • I think the entrance is through the back yard maybe? Down that staircase?

      • The lower floor apt is actually on the ground floor – kind of confusing. The door on the left is for the upstairs portion of the house and the slightly hidden door on the right is the separate apt’s. There’s also an entrance to the terrace in the back from the apt.

        If you buy this place and rent the downstairs, it would be more like a nice two story condo than a full house. Throwing 180k down seems like a lot for that style of living.

  • I need me some Mouse on House. With this house, it’s hard to tell how the layout works.

    But I love the way this has been redone. Totally my style.

  • Street parking only.

  • Cute house but did they have to paint the facade boring gray?

  • wow – can’t believe it was just over 200k just over 2 years ago; incredible buy assuming they put in 2-300k to get it to where it’s at now_

  • I am stunned – stunned I tell you — at how modern this house is.
    Mabe not a good deal but market price.

  • Wait, so upstairs (the part the owners would live in) only has 2 bedrooms? What? For $900k? It’s gorgeous, but no thank you.

    • Yes, but if the rental unit really does bring in $2k a month it’s essentially like paying mortgage on a $700k home. Which is not bad at all for that location.

      • Well, maybe 30% to 60% of your mortgage, depending on the terms. And the renter won’t be helping with the bid ole down payment needed.

  • Can Occupy Wall Street do anything about house prices in DC? My god man! How is someone making a modest, maybe slightly above average income ever supposed to buy a house here? Is everything 800K+ in this town? Geesh!

    • You can’t do it on a single income, but partner up with someone else who makes a decent salary and it’s definitely doable.

      • Also, you’re talking about a house+apartment that’s beautifully rennovated, steps from the metro, and in one of the hottest and most expensive neighobrhoods in the city. There are obviously cheaper options out there.

        • cheaper options in the ghetto where i might get shot / mugged. i’d need to walk around with rottweilers and pit bulls so people wouldn’t mess with me. if you want to buy in a good neighborhood, and make say 75k/year, how are you supposed to get anything? seems like every house i see in the paper, or online is at least 700k. sure, i can move east of the river, but why would i do that? basically, dc is turning into an elitist town where you better have money or get out.

          • Either look for a 1-bedroom condo or wait until you’re in a serious relationship with someone who makes as much as you do. I was considering the first option but ended up doing the second. We got a house for $775k. She makes a little more than you do and I make about the same, and we have no trouble making the mortgage payments and saving a little for emergencies.

          • P.S. – I do understand your frustration. It’s annoying when you have a great job and can barely afford a condo here, while people you went to high school with are living in giant McMansions as stay-at-home moms. But I wouldn’t want that lifestyle anyway.

          • If you think you can’t by a home in DC for under $700k in a desirable neighborhood, you really haven’t looked very hard.

          • your chances of getting mugged and shot are actually pretty low.

          • I don’t think anyone should live in a neighborhood where they feel unsafe just because it’s the only place where they can afford to buy. I wouldn’t feel comfortable living in Petworth, or even Columbia Heights, which is why we didn’t see much (during our 2-year search) that was under $700k. I see where Anonymous 3:19 is coming from, even if they’re being overly dramatic.

          • your entitled to your opinion, but to say that no one should live in a place they feel unsafe is ridiculous.

            this used to be the home of of the brave. it takes courage in this world to make things better. you don’t have to help out, but i applaud all of you that do.

            this city has come a long way only because of people stretching beyond their comfort zone. i did it. and i’m damn proud that my neighborhood is leaps and bounds better because of people not cowering in their fears.

          • Have you spent much time in Petworth? You might be surprised at how safe and friendly it is.

          • Have you been the victim of crime? Have you had the window bars of your house bent and your home ransacked? Did have men loitering right outside your house, flashing their guns at you?

            I tested out a neighborhood that was slightly outside my comfort zone, by renting for a year before I commited to buying. After all those things above happened within the first 6 months, I just knew I couldn’t live there. I applaud your bravery, but I think you’ve just been lucky. And probably a man.

          • Ever consider that maybe your comfort zone is not the same as someone else’s? Maybe stretching outside your comfort zone means living in Anacostia, while for another it might be H Street. And I’m sure you’re helping to make the neighborhood better, but let’s not forget that you got a great deal by choosing to live in a less safe area. You shouldn’t be making yourself out to be a martyr, just a guy who’s willing to take risks to save money.

          • hahahaha. making myself out to be a martyr?

            you guys make the weirdest assumptions.
            i tried to make my point. i failed.
            have fun ya’ll.

        • clevelanddave

          Hotest most expensive? We are talking above U St/Adams Morgan here. Most expensive? Wouldn’t that be like West End, west side of Dupont, Georgetown? Even Church Street and that area is both hotter and more expensive. This is a transitional nice hood but not zowie.

          • That’s why I said ONE OF THE hottest and most expensive. And who still thinks U Street is “transitional”? That was like ten years ago! I also don’t think anyone would call this area Adams Morgan.

    • Move to Petworth. Buy a house in good shape, that just needs updating. Update yourself. Done deal!

      • and care mace 🙂

        • Again, have you spent much time in Petworth? My wife and did not even consider moving to Petworth (we had barely even heard of it, so it wasn’t on our radar) when we started our search, but we wound up here, after looking in NoVA, Capitol Hill, Shaw, and Columbia Heights. We like it here, and we feel safe.

        • Yea nope, no mace here! Just a 3br, 1.5ba rowhouse with a little space for the dog in front and back, my own deck and front porch, and a 15-year mortgage payment cheaper than what some people pay for studios!

          Totally agree on the feeling safe. I feel quite safe. I do pay $32.95 for security system and monitoring, but that is almost purely for peace of mind while I am at work, or the wife and I are away for the weekend.

  • To say houses in DC are “too expensive” or you can’t find “something in a good neighborhood for under 700K” is just perception.

    First and foremost, forget about the McMansions your stay-at-mom friends live in. You are NEVER going to get that in the city in a safe neighborhood. Those “McMansion” size (I said size not the McMansion themselves) houses in the city are seen here on PoP every Wed. Also known as “House Porn”.

    From there you look at how much you want to spend. You can easily get a 1br + den in the U St area for 400K. EASILY. Is it going to be 3000sq ft like your friends’ houses in bum–ck, VA? No. But you know what, you aren’t going to have to drive anywhere and your commute is going to be 15 min.

    People seriously need to actually look for some places before they go all crazy over how DC is totally unaffordable.

    This is all coming from a person who bought a 2br condo in the Ust Area just last year for about 350K, and prices have not gone up *that* much since then. So don’t tell me it can’t be done.

    • I do agree with you that all is not lost for the single buyer – but check the current listings around U St (little bit of Shaw/Logan/Adams Morgan/CH)!lat=38.916687032803885&long=-77.03196684092279&market=dc&max_num_beds=2&num_baths=2.0&num_beds=2&v=6&zoomLevel=16

      Average for a 2&2 is $599k. That’s a lot for a single person. Fact is, a buyer needs to have access to 90k or over 100k for a down payment and have some freedom to look. That can be really hard to do in an area where the rents just keep going up and up.

      • “Fact is, a buyer needs to have access to 90k or over 100k for a down payment…”

        You really don’t need even close to $100k down to buy a home. It amazes me that people on this site always seem to assume that you need to put 20% down on a house. It really isn’t that hard to get an FHA loan with 3.5% down….and with mortgage rates at historic lows, putting down 3.5% really isn’t that onerous in the long term.

    • Wow. That is an incredible deal you got there! Congratulations! I wouldn’t even think you could get a 1 bedroom over there for $350k.

      • In all honesty, I got a really good deal. However, there is the possibility.

        Also, until you get head 1st into buying and are actively buying (pre-approved for loan, ready to make an offer) there is really no point in complaining. There are SO MANY places out there right now. And the sellers just list them really high and hope for a sucker to come along. Do your homework and you can get a good deal. Especially if you have good credit and are pre-approved for a loan. The housing market is so crappy right now because it is SO hard for people with decent — not perfect — credit to get a loan these days. So if you are pre-approved you are way ahead of the game and sellers are willing to negotiate with you so they can get a place sold.

  • We actually looked at this place when it was a shell and, unfortunately, the $200k wasn’t necessarily a steal. It was originally listed at $300k+ when we looked at it, but I believe was later foreclosed on.

    We took an engineer over there, and there were some huge issues with the place – the previous owner (a developer I believe) started doing some major renovations either without permits, or improperly, and as they were trying to dig down that ground level the walls of the neighboring houses started to bow, strucuturally compromising all of them. Also, the nice patio you see in te pictures was a giant concrete block from an attempt at a separate backyard studio. All that, along with brick work that needed major repairs, and the overall sad state inside (there had been squatters), meant a ton of work that needed to be done.

    I’m actually glad to see that a developer was apparently able to do such a nice job with it (whether it’s my style or not), because I doubt an individual without deep pockets would have been able to tackle the redo, and we had met several really nice neighbors who maligned what had happened to such a nice house over the years, and that it was the only eyesore on what is generally a good looking block.

  • I have noticed several homes around the intersection of Lamont and Warder St. that have come on the market and quickly be placed under contract. Does that area have investment potential? Is it even safe?

  • This was indeed very nice, but not as huge as one would hope for that price, because you are essentially buying the rental unit–which would normally be a finished basement/first level. The rental isn’t nearly as nice but given the location it should find willing occupants. A huge hotel/residence looms on a hill over the small paved back “yard”–and it looks like the retaining wall should deal with the water runoff, but renters beware. Too modern for my taste overall, but some great window/renovations–I suspect it will sell for list.

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