GDoN Revisited by Hipchickindc – 3013 11th St NW #3

Hipchickindc is a licensed real estate broker. Her latest business venture can be seen here. Unless specifically noted, neither she nor the company that she is affiliated with represented any of the parties or were directly involved in the transaction reported below. Unless otherwise noted, the source of information is Metropolitan Regional Information Systems (MRIS), which is the local multiple listing system. Information is deemed reliable but not guaranteed.

Featured Property: 3013 11th St NW #3
Legal Subdivision: Columbia Heights
Advertised Subdivision per Listing: Columbia Heights
Original List Price: $409,900.
List Price at Contract: $409,900.
List Date: 09/30/2011
Days on Market: 4
Settled Sales Price: $402,000.
Price per Square Foot: $462. (870 Square Feet per Listing, 848 Square Feet per Tax Record)
Settlement Date: 11/21/2011
Seller Subsidy: $125.
Bank Owned?: No Short Sale? No
Type Of Financing: Conventional
Original GDoN post is: here.
The listing can be seen: here. To see the photos, after opening the listing link, scroll through the arrows on the main pic.

Even compared to many other rapidly developing parts of the city, the Columbia Heights neighborhood has experienced a tremendous amount of construction over the past decade. In addition to numerous recently built multi-unit condo and apartment buildings, conversions of existing apartment buildings to condos, and the seemingly ongoing expansion of DC USA, the surrounding blocks feature an abundance of solid Victorian housing stock. Many of the late 19th and early 20th century homes in this area are quite large, and developers have taken the opportunity to create “boutique” condo buildings, ranging from two units to several.

Continues after the jump.

Boutique condo buildings in converted rowhomes tend to have lower fees. They may also have the feel of living in a house without the whole expense and responsibility of maintenance. Some boutique condo owners also prefer the sense of control that comes with living in a smaller community.

Back in 2003, 3013 11th St NW transferred as a single house for $220,000. (Note that ground had not even been broken for DC USA until 2006.) The property was purchased by developers in June 2004 for an undisclosed amount. The subject property, Unit 3, originally transferred in November 2004 for $389,000. Unit 2, which public records defines at 865 square feet, sold in 2005 for $429,000.

Unfortunately, Unit 2 was never publicly listed so there is no information about how it differs from Unit 3. Typically, in a converted rowhome, the top level will be the most expensive unit. It appears that Unit 1, which is the lower level, was retained by the developers.

The biggest challenge with a condominium consisting of a small number of units tends to be managing the investor ratio. Financing the purchase of a unit becomes difficult once the investor ratio in a building exceeds 50% (i.e. in a two unit building, one of the owners decides to rent out his/her unit). I’m currently working on a listing in a building with three units, two of which are rented out. I’ve contacted numerous lenders prior to marketing the property and have received responses ranging from not being able to get financing at all, to a couple of lenders who have in house portfolio loan products that would require 20% or 25% down payment (rare for first time buyers), to one lender who is able to provide options at 5% down.

8 Comment

  • oh wow. That is the place I was going to take a picture of and send in. They have the BEST door. That street has some excellent doors, but look at that carved sun. Amazing.

  • Could we get a GDoN/Update/Info on 1209 W St NW?

    That place was on the market for literally 4 or 5 days before it went under contract and today I saw a SOLD sign.


  • I’m surprised that no one is commenting on the fact that the seller isn’t making any money on this deal but for what they may have in equity on the mortgage. While they’re not losing money, I’d be upset to be in a place for seven years, pay condo fees etc. and basically walk away as if I was renting for that entire time…

    • @Petworth Res…except that it’s like you were living rent free for 7 years if you broke even on a sale rather than paying say, conservatively $1000/mo for 1 year = $12,000×7=$84,000. in rent (closing costs would likely be in the range of $28-$30,000, so $15,000 or so loss on this side, plus the closing costs the first time. Still better than renting by my calculations.)

      @13thnearu, I have a couple of high profile sales that I am planning to re-visit over the next couple of weeks so I don’t anticipate covering 1209 W. However, it was listed at $649,000, and just settled at $667,000.

      • @Hipchickindc so tell me how this was like, “living rent free again?” In order for the seller to live “rent free” for the seven year period, they would have gotten a return of the money paid towards the mortgage plus any condo fees. Considering that the first three years of mortgage payments typically go towards interest on the loan, any equity the seller would’ve accumulated over their initial down payment would have been made starting on year 4 and ending in year 7. Best case scenario: the seller lived 4 years “rent free.” Wait, let’s factor in the $30K in closing costs, which means they lived 2 years “rent free.” But what about condo fees and other necessaries? Then best case is probably more like 1 year “rent free” out of a total 7 years. Sounds like a good deal to me.

      • A little rationality lifts the qaltuiy of the debate here. Thanks for contributing!

  • A pealisngly rational answer. Good to hear from you.

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